What will be the most important step in establishing peace of this earth, after the return of Jesus Christ?
For nearly 6,000 years the god of this world has invisibly swayed the nations, he has influenced civilizations, governments and world leaders. He has inspired world wars and helped cause the misery, hate, suffering and violence that have plagued mankind throughout history.
Satan has been this world’s ruler ever since God gave him that office, when he was known as “bringer of life,” but his days in that office are numbered.
Today’s modern Christianity speaks of “winning souls for the Lord;” they speak as if there is some kind of contest between God and Satan. But God is not in some great controversy with Satan. The question who is going to rule this earth has already been decided.
In Matthew 4:11 tells us who that ruler is going to be; Jesus Christ, in verse 10-11 Christ told Satan, “Get thee hence or away with you; verse 11 “then the devil leaveth him.”
In these 11 verses Christ qualified to replace Satan, and when He returns He will take over the governments over all this world and dispose of Satan. This world will then have peace at last.
God has given us seven steps to show how He is going to bring about salvation to all mankind. The Day of Atonement is the 5th step in that plan. This step pictures deposing of Satan from his position as world ruler.
Satan will be bound for 1,000 years, no longer able to deceive the nations or influence mankind.“An angel will have the key of the bottomless pit and will cast him into the bottomless pit and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled” (Rev. 20:1-3).
On the Day of Atonement – God’s Church is required to fast-- that means going without food and water for a 24 hour period (or from sunset to sunset). But, why fast? Because fasting is a vivid reminder of the state of mind necessary for salvation, of humility, Godly sorrow, earnestly seeking God and His ways.
This world in which we live is filled with pomp and pride. The people that occupy this earth don’t realize that they have been cut off from God because of sin: “But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear” (Isa. 59:2).
Only those few whom God is calling are now reconciled to God; the vast majority must wait.
Now after the terrible events that are pictured in the Book of Revelation by the six seals and the six trumpet plagues men and women still refuses to repent. “The rest of the men which were not killed by these plagues repented not of the works of their hands neither repented they of their murders, nor of the sorceries, nor of their fornication, nor of their thefts” (Rev. 9:21).
By why won’t both men and women repent, what’s the problem? John tells us that Satan has deceived the entire world (Rev. 12:9). Now notice Rev. 13:11-14: “And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon.”
What did this second beast do? Verses 13-14: “he does great wonders (or signs) so that he makes fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men. And deceives them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles.”
Revelation 18:3 tells us that these people are spiritually drunk. What does it mean to be spiritually drunk; the same thing as when a person is physically drunk? When a police officer arrests a drunken person, that person simply can’t comprehend anything the officer is telling him; his mind has been impaired by alcohol. The same is true when a person is spiritually drunk; their minds have been impaired by false religious teachings of this world’s religions that they can’t understand or comprehend spiritual truth when they hear it.
These nations are so spiritually drunk that it is easy for demons to influence these nations to fight the return of Jesus Christ.
The Bible mentions three worlds “the world that then was” that perished in a worldwide flood (II Peter 3:6), “this present evil world” (Gal. 1:4), and “the world to come.” In this New World to come, Satan and his demons will no longer be allowed to influence individuals, nations and religions.
We know that Jesus Christ will replace Satan as world ruler, but what about the demons? “Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unjust (or unrighteous) and not before the saints? Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? And if the world shall be judged by you are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters? Know ye not that ye shall judge angles” (I Cor. 6:1-2).
Now compare this with II Peter 2:4 “For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell (Tartarus – a place of constraint) and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment.”
Figuratively speaking Satan and his demons will be under the saint’s feet (Rom. 16:20). “And the God of peace shall bruise (crush) Satan under your feet shortly.”
Does God command our presence on the Day of Atonement? “And ye shall have on the 10th day of this 7th month an holy convocation: and ye shall afflict your souls: ye shall not do any work therein’ (Num. 29:7).
Modern Christianity has totally misunderstood most aspect of God’s Holy Days. And since they don’t observe them (which reminds us of God’s Plan) they do not know what God’s plan is. They don’t understand the symbolism of the Day of Atonement. This day more than any other is hated by the great deceiver, because it pictures his defeat.
The 16th chapter of Leviticus details what God commanded the Levitical high priest to do on the Day of Atonement? These rituals, which are no longer performed because there is no longer a physical priesthood, pictured the binding of Satan, the 5th step in God’s plan to restore His government on this earth and bring the knowledge of salvation to everyone.
The rituals of God were to remind the House of Israel of their sins, and that the penalty for sin was death (Rom. 6:23), and that they would need a savior to pay their penalty for them. These sacrifices need not be offered today, nor can they be, there is no functioning Levitical priesthood nor anyone else authorized to perform those physical duties. Even though the rituals are no longer performed, we can still see their symbolic meaning.
The Day of Atonement should have a deep personal meaning for each member of Gods’ true Church. When Satan and his demons are dethroned and removed from office, they must be replaced; Christ has already qualified to replace Satan, the demons must be replaced by qualified rulers.
The question is; are you qualifying to rule this world as it ought to be? Could you do a better job than the rulers of today? Now you may think you could, but could you really? Right now, members of God’s church don’t have the power or the ability or capacity.
Of himself no man or woman is great enough to even begin to commence to measure up to the standards necessary to bring peace and happiness to the nations. It takes the power of God , the life of God, the mind and nature of God, but it is possible through conversion, and through conversion every single person great or small, can have God’ own power and nature added to him or her by receiving the Holy Spirit.
That is the message of the Gospel and most human beings can’t grasp this marvelous truth. They are unwilling to humble themselves under the Mighty hand of God and wait to be exalted in His due time.
Also on the Day of Atonement God’s people are required to fast; but what is the purpose of fasting? It is to humble us, to help us to see ourselves as we are, and to see God as He is. Fasting means going without food and water for an entire day, fasting on the Day of Atonement reveals to us that we are puny, insignificant little creatures inwardly warring with one another.
Notice Isa. 40:28-30 “Hast thou not known? Hast thou not heard that the everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, faints not, neither is weary? There is no searching of his understanding. He gives power to the faint (or weak) and to them that have no might he increases strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary and the young men shall utterly fall.”
Your glorious spirit body will have no need of food and water to sustain life. When we fast on the Day of Atonement it pictures to us the time and condition when we will no longer need to eat. We will no longer be earthbound, tied to this sphere with it supply of food and water.
It pictures the time we shall have power to go where we will, whenever and wherever necessary to carry out the government of God while we teach others how to live joyfully and happily and how to inherit the same wonderful spirit bodies we will have.
Fasting reveals to us how much we still love ourselves, and how difficult it is to give up some of self. This day is a test to see which we will put first; will it be the cry for food or the sincere desire to obey God? We should not sorrow on the Day of Atonement; like all of God’s Holy Days, it is a time of great rejoicing.
What does At-One-Ment mean to this world? “And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week and in the midst (or middle) of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation (or offering) to cease, and for overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall he pour upon the desolate” (or desolator) (Dan. 9:27).
The primary desolator of earth is Satan, also called Abaddon, Apollyon, and Destroyer.
Jesus Christ was to confirm the covenant for seven years, but He was cut off in the middle of the week or 3 1/2 years of the seven years prophecy. So that leaves another 3 1/2 years yet to be fulfilled after His second coming. Now if Christ fulfilled the Day of Atonement, then why isn’t this world at one with God?
Jesus Christ spent 3 1/2 years from the autumn of 27 A.D. to the Passover in 31 A.D., confirming the covenant by personally teaching and training a first group of true Christians who are to be given the lordship of the world the covenant promised. When Christ returns he will continue what He began by actually putting people in power over nations, bringing all into subjection to the government of God.
“Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord. And he shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you; whom the heavens must received until the times of restitution (or restoration) of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began” (Acts. 3:19-21).
What is it that needs to be restored to this earth, why the government of God? A whole new way of life needs to be restored to mankind. It was once offered to Adam and Eve, but they quickly rejected it, being deceived by Satan the Devil
This world needs to be obedient to God’s revealed will, to develop faith instead of skepticism, not relying on the wisdom of man, but on the superior wisdom and experience of God. It needs to do away with human reasoning and feelings, desires and emotions based on the pulls of the flesh.
The first step in being at one with God is the reinstitution of God’s authority, with absolute enforcement and immediate punishment for the infractions of God’s law.
At-One-Ment or the Day of Atonement will not be complete with merely putting Satan away. People will still be hating and killing each other. Man’s mind, man’s very nature, must be refashioned, his character reshaped and remolded until be becomes “at-one-ment” with God, then the fully confirmed New Covenant will be completed.
Notice the attitudes of both Israel and Judah at that time: “They shall come with weeping and with supplications will I lead them: I will cause them to walk by the rivers of waters in a straight way, wherein they shall not stumble: for I am a father to Israel and Ephraim is my first born” (Jer. 31:9).
Verse 34: “And they shall teach no more every man his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying know the Lord, for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the great of them, saith the Lord for I will forgive their iniquity and I will remember their sins no more.”
“In those days, and in that time, saith the Lord, the children of Israel shall come, they and the children of Judah together going and weeping, they shall go and seek the Lord their God. They shall ask the way to Zion with their faces thitherward, saying. Come and let us join ourselves to the Lord in a perpetual covenant that shall not be forgotten” (Jer. 50:4-5).
Who does God blame for their past sins and wrong attitudes? “My people hath been lost sheep: their shepherds (ministers) have caused (or led) them to go astray” (v. 6). Who are these false shepherds – read II Cor. 11:13-15? Ministers of modern-day Christianity.
“In those days and in that time, saith the Lord, the iniquity of Israel shall be sought for, and there shall be none, and the sins of Judah, and they shall not be found, for I will pardon them whom I reserve” (Jer. 50:20).
God says, “I will pardon them whom I reserve” – those whom he brings through the Great Tribulation. There will be at-one-ment between God and Israel.
The Day of Atonement is a vivid illustration of the state of mind necessary for salvation, of the humility, the Godly sorrow, the earnest seeking for the right way. It is also a warning of the state to which God will be forced to reduce Israel by war, captivity, by deportation, slavery and persecution.
How does James say we will receive the ability to withstand Satan during this life? “Submit yourselves therefore to God, resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded. Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep; let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heavenliness. Humble your selves in the sight of the Lord and he shall lift you up” (James 4:7-10).
Humbling ourselves, resisting Satan and submitting to God is symbolic of how we can be able to replace him as world ruler.
Those who are truly converted, who have surrendered to God’s will; will keep the Day of Atonement, fasting and meeting with others of God’s true Church if at all possible. Those who refuse to keep this day, or who carelessly keep it in some manner other than God commanded, are not converted and will be cut off from among the people of God.
Those ready when Christ returns will enter the Kingdom of God, but outside will be darkness and weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Sin and rebellion had started with one man, Adam. Righteousness and obedience leading to peace started with one man, Jesus Christ. He was the beginning, the foundation of the altogether new building, the New World to come, the new civilization, the New World of tomorrow. The world will then be at one with God.