Saturday, May 3, 2008

Who Are The 144,000?

  • Are there only to be 144,000 resurrected when Jesus returns?
  • Abraham’s children are as numerous as the stars. Are only 144,000 of them to be resurrected? Are there only 144,000 stars?

Ron says that the 144,000 & the great multitude are one and the same.  He says God's not calling everyone.  He says God's church is a little flock.

Alright, it was a little flock back in Jesus' day. Do you think it's STILL that little?
Mt. 28:18 Then Jesus came to them and said, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit...
Jesus told His disciples to go make disciples of all nations! Was Jesus confused? Why would He say that if His church was to consist of 144,000 people?
Do you think 144,000 is little? How about 500,000? What about 1,000,000?
Well, 'big' and 'small' are relative.
Small, compared to what? Small compared to your household? Compared to your family and relatives? Small compared to your town, your state, your country? Compared to the people alive at the current time, or perhaps those from the last 1 or 200 years? Small compared to WHAT?
I'd like you to try something. Get a piece of graph paper out & mark out a square about 32 x 32 (of the small squares). That represents about 6.5 billion people (currently on the planet). Now color in one of those single little squares. That represents about 6.5 million people. WOW! That square you colored in is SO SMALL! How much of that little colored square do think totals 144,000? A little dot in the corner. What if that colored square were the number of people in the first resurrection, (6.5 million)? Wouldn't that be SMALL!? Trace out a 10 by 10 section, that's 100 squares. That represents 650 million people! Wouldn't that be small!? Look how many of the 32 x 32 squares remain. Remember this sheet represents only people alive RIGHT NOW. Now consider all who have EVER lived and ask yourself again, what "small" is. Everything is relative.
(See bottom of page to see how this is calculated).

Mt.9:37 Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful… [Out of the BILLIONS, or more, people who have existed and now exist, are 144,000 Plentiful? Doesn't 144,000 sound more like the number of a sheaf offering than a total harvest? See Lev.23:10 .]
Alright, next step...
Rev.7:4-8, We see here, that the 144,000 come from the 12 tribes, numbered and named specifically. [What Herbert Armstrong proclaimed as proof, was no such thing. The US is not Israel. His proof is NOT proof. It is founded in fables and legends. He just gave some scriptures and added a make-believe story for them. There is nothing in the bible that backs him up. Nothing. Why would God list 12,000 from each specifically named tribe of Israel if He was not being literal? (More on British Israelism coming soon.)]
These below, however, come from every nation, tribe, people and language. Read what it says. Trust the Holy Spirit that God GAVE YOU and read it! It doesn't need to be Saturday, and you don't need to be taught by Ron!
Rev.7:9 After this I looked and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and in front of the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands.
There are two groups; the 144,000 and the great multitude: She who has a husband, (Israel, the original bride of Christ), and she who is barren and has no husband, (Gentiles, who would become part of the bride of Christ, once that door was opened by His sacrifice, making the two become one, as stated in the two scriptures below.)
Ga.4:27, Is.54:1 say that the barren woman [Gentiles, aka, anyone not an Israelite] will have more children [of God/great multitude] than the woman [Israel/144,000] who has a husband (Christ). [As Herbert always said; 'Are you getting this!?' This is HUGE!
Ignore that old programming in your head and tune in to God's word. Why did God give you the Holy Spirit in the first place? Is it incompetent? Of course not! If Jesus says; "
For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them", what is the reason? Is it to observe you because He can do nothing else? Is it out of His hands because it's RON'S job to do the teaching!? For crying out loud. Of course not. If you haven't already, please, read my post, Do We Need To Be Taught By Others? (Actually, all of the material on this blog connects together, and can be quite helpful.
Please, don't just read them, look up the scriptures. Really think about them. Find more scriptures. Use and interlinear if you can get your hands on one. And pray for guidance!)
If the 144,000 are literal descendants of Israel, (genetic Israel), then Ron's belief that they are the only ones in the first resurrection, means that Gentiles, (those not genetically Israel), are not included. Which means you would have to ignore the fact that God said that She who has no husband would bear the larger group, (the numberless multitude), and exclude them from the resurrection. Or, if believing the 144,000 are both Israel and Gentile, we're back to a minute group consisting of both.

    These two physical groups; a group of genetic Israelites and a group of non-genetic Israelites, become one spiritual bride of Jesus. Like the Father & the Son are One, and yet, Two, or a Husband and Wife are one.
  • When you become a believer you become a child of Abraham (Ro.9:6-8; Gal.3:6-14).
  • Not all who are descended from Israel are Israel (Ro.9:6-8 Note v.8!). [Meaning, just because one is genetically an Israelite, it's not automatic qualification. There is more to belonging to God than that.]
  • We were formerly excluded from citizenship in Israel but thanks to Christ, no longer (Ep.2:11-22; Jn.1:11-13).I do not believe that the 144,000 are the only ones in the first resurrection. I do believe that the great multitude ARE in the first resurrection, (Re.7:9). I do not believe that the Great Multitude is a group of144,000. I believe that the 144,000 are the children of "she who has a husband", and that the great multitude are the children of "the barren, desolate woman."
Gal. 4:27
For it is written:

"Be glad, O barren woman,
who bears no children;
break forth and cry aloud,
you who have no labor pains;
because more are the children of the desolate woman
than of her who has a husband."
Are there any doubts as to what that verse means? [Galatians is a great book; my favorite.]

I believe that God
IS not calling everyone, as Ron says, but that He is calling FAR MORE than 144,000, and that the great multitude are those who are not genetically from the tribes of Israel (and not everyone who is descended from Israel is Israel) and ARE in the resurrection that takes place at Jesus’ return, and are not excluded, because;
Christ made Gentiles and Israelites ONE (Ep.2:13-18). There is NO DIFFERENCE between Jew and Gentile (Ro.10:12). They are one group spiritually, but two groups genetically - as a combined family of biological and adopted children. Just as in any case today, where a family adopts a child; The biological children and the adopted children are different genetically, but the same, as in, they are now one family.
You don't need to be part of a teeny tiny 'privileged' group to feel special. Don't you feel special just because God called you? Because you belong to Him?

Some of you may be familiar with this story;
Some local ministers ran an add in the paper. They would be on the court house steps, writing checks to pay for parking tickets; all you had to do was to show up and present your parking ticket, and a check for the amount of the debt would be written. Did these people have to qualify in some way? No. It was a gift. Get the picture?
You may also want to see my post, Works Vs Faith.

THE GRAPH PAPER:
The square root of 1,000 is about 32 (hence 32 squares)
6.5 million x 1000=6.5 billion
1 square is 1/1000 so 1 square=6.5 million if 1000 squares = 6.5billion

1 comment:

Judith said...

"Heaven is my throne and earth is my footstool." Just as a footstool sets below the throne, the great crowd which no man could number, that John saw in Revelation) was before the throne, on the earth, his footstool.