Dear Associates, Students and Friends:
There are times when details are important. This month’s presentation goes into detail about the nature of God and the beings He created through Christ for the ultimate purpose of serving mankind to bring many sons to glory. This is God’s plan of creation.
“For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.”
The words and presentation of this article are mine, but I am proud to acknowledge the immense debt I owe to Dr. Ernest Martin for my comprehension of the biblical doctrines as he taught them and as I present them. This biblical information directly reflects the profound work of Dr. Martin best expressed in depth in his book The Essentials of New Testament Doctrine. 1 It is indeed a clear statement of the essentials of the teaching of the New Testament. It shows you the reason and the means by which God’s plan of salvation will succeed — everything comes from God the Father through Jesus Christ. You and I are “in Christ.”
This month’s article is titled “Elohim and the Son of God.” This is part one. Part two shall follow shortly (God willing in the next two weeks), so look for it. Then in November 2007 we will return to the usual monthly Newsletter and Article. But for October you will receive a double dose, one at the beginning of the month, one at mid-month, with the regular article at the beginning of November.
This month’s article is the written version of the lecture I gave at the One God Conference in Albany, NY on June 9, 2007. I was the sole contrary speaker at the conference and my lecture was strongly opposed, but I was graciously received and I felt welcome by all present. 2 It was also great to see a few friends from ASK that were able to attend.
The entire lecture was recorded on video. My PowerPoint presentation was melded into the speech and now the entire lecture is available on DVD for $9.95. You will then be able to watch and follow the lecture, stop the DVD and read the references and their larger contexts from your own Bible to check up on me. Several who have seen the DVD say it makes for an excellent Bible study. It is gratifying any time people are opening their Bibles. It is my hope you will comprehend some of these concepts as never before.
Learning who God is, who Christ is, what their relationship is, and what your relationship is to them, should all be of great interest to you. By learning about God you please God because you are discovering what He is doing for you in creation. As I have said before, in one way of looking at it you are the object of creation. So is everyone else, of course, but that does not diminish your special place in God’s heart. You give God pleasure, now, at this moment, not just at some time in the future when you are “perfect.” 3 Let me prove it.
Few of us realize that it pleases God to see His will and purpose fulfilled in creation. Although it may not seem to be so in your life, this applies to you also. It has pleased God to predestinate you to be adopted as one of His children in Christ. Do not EVER think you are not special in this world or in God’s sight. You may not be “somebody” according the world’s calculations, but you are special to God, which makes you intrinsically special and unique:
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: According as he has chosen us [that includes you] 4 in him [“in Christ”] before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will.”
It gives God pleasure to fulfill His will through you. It pleases Him to do so. You please Him.
I should not have to say it explicitly, but God loves you. He has demonstrated that by choosing you “before the foundation of the world” to know and understand His will for you. If you understand this, then you can be assured you are chosen. If it was not so, your vanity and your natural deceitfulness of heart would not allow you to continue to love God and study His word.
“To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he has made us accepted in the beloved. In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace; Wherein he has abounded toward us in all wisdom and prudence; Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he has purposed in himself: That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him.”
It pleases God for YOU to know the mystery — the secret — of His will. You can know it now, at this moment. You do not have to wait until the general resurrection and explanation at the Great White Throne judgment after the 1000 year reign of Christ. You are being given now an early taste of God’s will, God’s plan for mankind, that will be fulfilled for every human who ever lived or ever shall live. It is given to you to know that mystery, that secret, now. Carpe diem! It means “seize the day!”
Each of us regrets missed opportunities in our lives. There have been many. But God has given us an opportunity greater than we ever could imagine. The knowledge you have now, that you are “in Christ” is literally a heavenly blessing (Ephesians 1:3, above). We appreciate the opportunity to give you some of that knowledge from the Bible, explaining the truths of God in a way that touches your mind so you come to a full knowledge, a full realization of the truth (1 Timothy 2:4). Dr. Martin studied, researched, worked, and taught so you might be instructed and come to acknowledge a large amount of the truth of God’s word (2 Timothy 2:25). We are thankful for the opportunity to continue that effort for the sake of others and you.
We are thankful to each of you who contribute to ASK. For our part we continue to tighten expenses so we can expand and reach out to even more people in an appropriate and efficient manner. For those who cannot contribute, let us know that you pray for ASK and are speaking to others about us. God bless you all.
David W. Sielaff
1 Portland, OR, 2001. The entire book is available online at http://www.askelm.com/essentials/index.asp and was designed to be read in order. Of course I have read and learned from other teachers of Scripture through the decades, both in and out of Fuller Theological Seminary, but Dr. Martin’s work has by far had the greatest and most profound impact on my biblical understanding.
2 Audios of all the lectures are online at http://kingdomready.org/blog/2007/06/14/audio-from-one-god-conf. My lecture did not lend itself to be heard by the audio only without viewing the accompanying PowerPoint presentation.
3 Legally, before God you are already perfect by virtue of your being “in Christ.” This is fully explained in Essentials.
4 For a fun and fascinating exercise, read the books of Ephesians, Colossians, and Philippians inserting the word “me” where the word “us” occurs, and insert “I” where the word “we” occurs. This works for most occurrences and it will personalize these three books to give a better realization of their messages. They do, after all, directly apply to you and your loved ones.
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