The Regeneration of the 144,000
(Wilfred) Maybe we should just take a look at these statements that John gave us first.
The Great Controversy page 47, “The gospel presents to them principles of life which are wholly at variance with their habits and desires, and they rise in rebellion against it.” Isn’t that typical of us? “They hate the purity which reveals and condemns their sins, and they persecute and destroy those who would urge upon them its just and holy claims. It is in this sense—because the exalted truths it brings occasion hatred and strife” That is they bring occasion for hatred and strife.“—that the gospel is called a sword.” Is that clear?
Volume 2 Spiritual Gifts page 229, “Many, I saw, were flattering themselves that they were good Christians, who have not a single ray of light from Jesus. They know not what it is to be renewed by the grace of God. They have no living experience for themselves in the things of God. And I saw that the Lord was whetting his sword in heaven to cut them down.” Now, what is His sword?
(Several voices in the Audience) His word.
(Wilfred) His word. And what’s it going to do?
(John) Making it sharper.
(Wilfred) And it’s going to cut them down.
Acts of the Apostles page 502, “The shield of faith must be in our hand, the helmet of salvation on our brow; and with the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God, we are to cut our way through the obstructions and entanglements of sin.” Slightly different aspect of the sword there but very closely related.
And on page 582 of the same book, “In His hand are seven stars, and out of His mouth issues a sharp two-edged sword, which is an emblem” or symbol “of the power of His word.” So why does the Bible use a sword as a symbol of the word? Well, because it cuts and because it has power.
The Bible Commentary Volume 4 page 1161, “The angel with the writers ink horn is to place a mark upon the foreheads of all who are separated from sin and sinners.” Did you notice now? Who’s going to get that mark?
(Several voices in the audience) Those who are separated from sin and sinners.
(Wilfred) How are they going to be related to the sword when it starts flying around?
(John) They are going to allow it to cut its way through the obstructions and entanglements of sin in their own lives.
(Wilfred) Right you are! And then it says, “The destroying angel follows this angel,” remember that these six men came from the higher gate and one man with the writers ink horn was commissioned to go through the midst of Jerusalem and place this mark upon all those who sigh and cry for the abominations that they’d done in the midst thereof. Then the five men, with the destroying weapons in their hands were ordered to go through after him and slay utterly. Now, do you get the picture or is it sensible to you?
I want to read just a wee bit from Joel to tie that in with what we said before, we have to keep coming back to these things to tie them in otherwise we lose them. Remember the second chapter of Joel here causes alarm because the day of the Lord is coming. 1 “Blow ye the trumpet in Zion," what does blowing a trumpet in God’s word symbolize?
(Wilfred) Yes! Giving a massage with a loud noise, blow the trumpet let everybody hear it. “And sound an alarm,” and you know what an alarm is? It’s something that wakes you up in the morning when you’re sound asleep. It makes a lot of noise, gets you going. The fire siren is an alarm. It’s an emergency, gets you going. Well the Lord says, "Sound an alarm." Why sound an alarm? It’s an emergency. What’s the condition of the people? Lukewarm and probably asleep, a lot of them. But the Bible says it is now high time to awake out of sleep. “Let all the inhabitants of the land tremble: for the day of the Lord cometh, for it is nigh at hand; 2 A day of darkness and of gloominess, a day of clouds and of thick darkness, as the morning spread upon the mountains.” Now look, at that time, when the day of darkness is about to burst upon God’s people and the world. What is God going to have? Verse 2, right in the middle of it, “A great people and a strong, there hath not been ever the like, neither shall be any more after it, even to the years of many generations.” Who are those people?
(John) The hundred and forty four thousand.
(Wilfred) The hundred and forty four thousand. Go down a little further. 3 “A fire devoureth before them; and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and nothing shall escape them. “What’s happening here?
(John) It’s the last message.
(Wilfred) It’s the last message. And what’s it doing?
(John) If you are still hearing it there is opportunity but if you’ve heard it and rejected it you’re like a barren desert.
(Wilfred) Yes, you're going to be cut down. 4 “The appearance of them is as the appearance of horses.” Who’s he talking about here?
(John) The hundred and forty four thousand.
(Wilfred) Those people, that great people. "And as horsemen, so shall they run. 5 Like the noise of chariots on the tops of mountains shall they leap, like the noise of a flame of fire that devoureth the stubble, as a strong people set in battle array.” Are they disorganized? They are united. What unites them?
(John) The truth.
(Wilfred) The truth, that’s right. 6 “Before their face the people shall be much pained: all faces shall gather blackness. 7 They shall run like mighty men; they shall climb the wall like men of war; and they shall march every one on his ways, and they shall not break their ranks: 8 Neither shall one thrust another;” Get that? “They shall walk every one in His path:” Now watch this. The last part of verse 8, don’t miss it, don’t get distracted, watch it. “And when they fall upon the sword,” they shall be slain.
(A man in the audience) Unintelligible.
(Wilfred) That’s not what it says. Not these people. It’s not going to cut them down. The sword is not going to cut this strong people down. What’s it going to do? “They shall not be wounded. 9 They shall run to and fro in the city;” What is the city?
(A man in the audience) Jerusalem.
(Wilfred) “They shall run upon the wall, they shall climb up upon the houses; they shall enter in at the windows like a thief. 10 The earth shall quake before them;” What’s the effect of their message?
(Several voices in the audience) Unintelligible.
(Wilfred) It’s going to be earth shattering. That’s right. “The heavens shall tremble: the sun and the moon shall be dark and the stars shall withdraw their shining:" Don’t be surprised if there is more in there than what we so far have been preaching. 11 “And the Lord shall utter his voice before his army: for his camp is very great: for he is strong that executeth his word:” Who is it that’s strong?
(John) The Lord.
(Wilfred) Yes, For he is strong that executeth his word. Who’s that talking about?
(John) The people.
(Wilfred) The people, who are going what?
(John) Giving His message.
(Wilfred) Executing his word. Do you see the identifying mark of these people? They are people who are obeying the word of the Lord. What is the test of God’s people with respect to those who are not God’s people? That they obey His commandments and what is the sign in those commandments that they have given their allegiance to Him?
(Many voices in the audience) The Sabbath.
(Wilfred) Ok, Have you got the people identified for sure now? “For he is strong that executeth his word, for the day of the Lord is great and very terrible; and who can abide it? Well, we could go on and read the rest of the chapter, it’s a tremendous chapter.
(John) That’s almost repeating what Malachi says, Who can abide the day of His coming? Who can stand the day of His coming?
(Wilfred) What was Malachi’s day he was talking about?
(John) A day of fire and trial...
(Wilfred) For what? For what purpose?
(John) For purifying.
(Wilfred) Purifying God’s people. Now, have you got the thought that before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord God’s people are going to hear an alarm. Have you got that? What’s it going to sound about? Well, maybe I should ask, What kind of people is it going to produce?
(Several voices in the audience) Unintelligible
(Wilfred) A strong people. A people who are doing what?
(John) God’s word.
(Wilfred) God’s word. Keeping God’s commandments and following his book. Right. Now, when the day comes upon them what’s going to happen to them? They’re going to fall on that sword. But they are not going to get hurt. Instead they are going to be grounded in the truth, settled into the truth, and they are going to receive that mark. Right? But those who do not follow the truth and obey God’s word. What’s going to happen to them?
(John) They’re going to be slain.
(Wilfred) They are going to be desolated by it. And there will be a famine of the word of God such as has never been. And it says they will go to and fro in the earth searching but the saints will have nothing for them. It’s too late now. They have rejected it. You cannot get the message across, it meets a dead end. No Spirit. The Spirit of God is going to be removed from the earth and it will be settled upon God’s people.
Well, I should spend the evening going through that chapter but I have something more difficult to handle tonight. And I say more difficult because it is the sword that we have just been reading about. And when that sword comes upon us we’re either going to be unhurt or desolated. I hope it’s not going to be that severe tonight. But that’s the picture God has given us.
Now let me be a little more humble in my presentation of this. I will tell you frankly that I am going to share with you that which I believe the Spirit of God gave to me. It was either the Spirit of God or it was the Spirit of the devil. One of the two. And whenever we meet up with these things, the Bible says we are to do what with the spirits?
(John) Try the spirits.
(Wilfred) Try them. Whether they be of God. That’s right, and that’s what I recommend that you do. And I hope nobody feels desolated because they may not be able to follow the thing that I present tonight or that it may look to them as though it where not true. But I do hope that everyone will be willing to be discreet in the use of what we are talking about tonight. You can regard it as a theory if you wish, you can stick it on the shelf if you wish, you can reject if you wish. I have been leading up to it for some time and I believe that if your mind is alert you’ll recognize that theory or no theory it does solve a lot of the dilemmas that I have been bringing to you during the past few weeks. But it adds new ones and that’s the way God’s word is. So that it continues to expand and unfold, it never reaches a dead end. Personally, I have checked and rechecked all the aspects of this particular subject, I have set it aside at times. At times I have tried to reject it simply to be sure in my own thinking that this thing holds water, that it is logical, that it makes sense. And I must admit that there are spots which I cannot explain and I simply have to leave them. I don’t know them, I don’t understand it. But there are many of these dilemmas that we have been talking about which are cleared right up when this key is applied. So, I’ll do my best to share it with you. I have had an awful day today, the very day I was hoping I would be able to have peace and quiet and be able to collect my thoughts because I really need to do it and I didn’t have it. So I’m going to have to depend on the Lord to help me get organized. There are different ways this thing can be presented and I was laying in bed one night and the whole thing was going through my mind and I thought, now, I should put that down on paper so I have it and I won’t forget it. And I said, No I won’t forget that, and I didn’t want to get up at that point and didn’t want to disturb my wife and furthermore I didn’t want to wake too much as I knew I wouldn’t get back to sleep for a while. So, I thought I will remember it. and you know what happens. I hope it will come back as I am moving along.
Last week I went through a number of items that present
problems. And I think maybe I should take just a few minutes to refresh
our minds on those without going into all the details. Let me refer you
back to the shut door. There is a problem in the shut door thing. On
the Day of Atonement the high priest goes into the holy apartment and
he goes on into the most holy apartment, without going into the
details of what he does on that day, you can find this all described
very nicely in M.L. Andreasen’s book, The Sanctuary Service, and
White has quite a bit in her books too. But Andreasen goes into minute
detail in describing this. But on the Day of Atonement there were no
individual sin offerings brought to the tabernacle, it was just the
regular morning offering services that were conducted first on behalf
of the people at large, and then the special services of the Day of
Atonement were conducted. And Sister White said, with reference to the
midnight cry and the parable of the coming bride groom to the wedding,
that they went in and the door was shut. And they didn’t understand
that thing to well and later it was revealed to her in vision that this
referred to going into the most holy apartment of the sanctuary leaving
the holy apartment on the part of Christ. He moved from the holy to the
most holy, you got that? And she was shown that the door to the holy
apartment was shut and nobody could open it. And the one to the most
holy was opened and nobody could shut it. And that this began in 1844
as the anti-typical Day of Atonement and has been in progress ever
since. But you see it presents a problem because the preliminary
service took place at the beginning of the Day of Atonement on behalf
of all the people and all the sins that were committed on the Day of
Atonement were obviously taken care of by that one service. There were
no other sacrifices made, this was a day that they had to recommit
themselves, they had to afflict their souls because of their sins. And
they stood in trembling and fear because it was a day of judgment and
if the high priest went into the most holy apartment failed to come out
it meant that the Lord had not accepted the people because he
represented the people. But when he came out it meant reassurance that
God had accepted them in spite of their sins. And they were clean, not
just that their sins had been forgiven but that they were clean in His
sight. They were cleansed.
The problem is that some of us weren’t born at the time that that service took place. At the beginning of the Day of Atonement in 1844, understand? So what about our sins? Were all the sins that were confessed during the Day of Atonement by us covered by that 1844 experience? Because the door was then shut how can those sins get in from now on? If the door is shut my sins can’t be transferred to the sanctuary by the sprinkling of the blood when the door is shut. And the priest is already gone in there and gone into the most holy. You get the problem? And yet, you’ll find in all the writings of Sister White she talks as if when you confess your sins they're transferred to the sanctuary by the blood of sprinkling. Now, what do we accept? How do we look at this thing? One thing is sure God still accepts his people, that is sure. It’s not too hard to prove that. The door of probation is not closed. Well I took a long time on that one.
Then there is the one about the delayed coming of Christ. What would have happened if Christ had come before we got on to this scene of action? She said it could have happened.
(A woman in the audience) ...the same thing when He does
come all those that are not born are not going to be there.
(Wilfred) That’s true. Then, how can He ever shut it off? And have everybody say, Well, you were fair Lord. Somebody is going to say, well look, if you would have let it go on a little longer there would have been someone else come in.
Miller’s message, I mentioned that one. The seventh trumpet, I mentioned that one. I won’t go back on that one just at the moment. Mark of the beast, Revelation 21:4 the souls of these martyrs. He saw them beneath the alter or something. And they had not received the mark of the beast and yet Sister White says that nobody has received the mark of the beast until it becomes a test in the final days. And yet these people were dead. But those who don’t receive the mark of the beast receive the seal of God and where do they go?
(John) Through to translation.
(Wilfred) Through to translation. Yes. That’s right. How come these people were dead?
I don’t think I brought you that one, I should have put it in here but I guess I just slipped up on it. It says, It is appointed unto men once to die but after this...
(John) The judgment.
(Wilfred) Well, what about the hundred and forty four thousand? Another problem, right? Let me just mark that one in here. I forgot to put it on my list.
Then we have promises to the over-comers in each of the eras of the seven churches in Revelation 2 & 3. Sister White makes it quite clear that those promises are cumulative and that they all apply to the one hundred and forty four thousand. But the one hundred and forty four thousand she says are the living saints on the earth who go through the seven last plagues and are translated. Now these over-comers in the other six eras of the Church's history and the first portion of the seventh era including Sister White are all dead. How can they be among the one hundred and forty four thousand? As the over-comers who go into the temple on Mount Zion and I pointed that one out. As Jesus was leading the saints including Sister White during her first vision they went out of the city and up to the temple on Mount Zion. And Jesus paused before entering and raised His voice and said, only the one hundred and forty four thousand enter this place. So only the one hundred and forty four thousand can become, Can I say it?, members of the building of the temple on Mount Zion? Those who are not among the one hundred and forty four thousand do not go into that temple, she says it very plainly in her first vision, Early Writings. And she says that the ones who are the one hundred and forty four thousand are the living saints. At the same time she says that the angel showed her that she would be with the one hundred and forty four thousand. And there was some other lady that was going to be there with the one hundred and forty four thousand.
And in her vision of 1856 she saw that some were to be food for worms, they would die, some would go through the seven last plagues and die, and some would go through to translation.
(John) And they are all dead.
(Wilfred) And they are all dead.
Now, lets get a few more here. If the one hundred and forty four thousand are the only ones who go into the temple on mount Zion with Jesus and if the one hundred and forty four thousand are the living saints who go through to translation that would exclude all the apostles and the apostle Paul, all the other over-comers.
(John) John the Baptist.
(Wilfred) John the Baptist and all the rest of them. Yet Jesus promised those disciples something. Have you ever read it? What did He promise them? You can’t come with me now but latter you can come with Me, wherever I am. And Revelation 14 says the one hundred and forty four thousand, they follow the Lamb, how far?
(Many voices at once) Withersoever He goeth.
(Wilfred) And that means it in more than one sense. They not only follow Him in his experience but they follow Him where He goes.
(John) Not only that Brother Johnson but in the Desire of Ages she says that the ordination of the apostles, just as the twelve patriarchs were the foundation of the Old Testament Church so when Christ laid his hands upon the disciples He was saying they were the foundation of the Christian Church.
(Wilfred) Well, can you see that if all these difficulties are going to be solved or resolved, if the promise of Jesus to his disciples is going to be fulfilled, those disciples are going to have to be alive on the earth before the close of probation. Well, somebody says that there is a special resurrection; maybe they come up in the special resurrection. Well, Sister White tells us plainly who comes up in the special resurrection all those who have fallen asleep in the third angels massage and those who pierced the Lord and a sprinkling of others.
(A man in the audience) Unintelligible
(Wilfred) Yes, but the point here is that that resurrection does not occur until just before Jesus comes.
(John) And that’s long after the close of probation.
(Wilfred) And these people don’t live to see all these experiences. They just come up specially to see the second coming of Jesus. So we’ve got a problem. Then I pointed out last week that the apostle Paul saw himself as being among the living. He said, then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them, the ones that were raised from the dead, and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Do you think that was an accident? Was it a twist of speech? Do you think the Lord gets careless when He gets His Bible written?
(John) Although Paul said that day shall not come unless there is a falling away, he recognized that it wouldn’t be right away.
(Wilfred) What about John? Remember what Jesus said to him or to Peter about John? If I will that he tarry till I come what is that to thee? Follow thou me. And Sister White said that all the sayings of Jesus have a meaning which is not on the surface. We have to read a little deeper. There is a significance there she says that you don’t discover just by reading it casually. Jesus did not make any statements that did not have significant meaning. Why did He make a statement like that? What’s that got to do with it?
Then over in the Revelation when John, that same John, was faithfully doing what he was told to do, to write all the things that he saw and heard, seven thunders uttered their voices and John was about to write as he had been instructed to do, and the angel said, don’t do it. Don’t write that. Then the angel went on to explain about that little book, and then he said, for you are going to prophesy again before many nations, kindred, tongues, and people.
(John) And John was over ninety years old then.
(Wilfred) And John never had a chance to do that. Other than through his book, but he didn’t write what the seven thunders uttered in his book. Did you get that point? So there are two things about the apostle John that there is a problem with. Now these are the spots that you need to pay attention to when you are studying God’s word because those are the little Orions that open out into space where there is a lot more light. But don’t go speculating. And I want to tell you frankly that I did not speculate, I am going to give you the thing that the Lord presented to me. The key that unites these things and unifies these things and makes sense out of chaos and it pretty nearly shattered me, and it took me a long time to get adapted to it. And to recognize that this is the way God works. We have been so schooled in symbolisms and sand-table displays and pictures that we have a hard time getting out of our childhood ways of thinking of things. Now, when the apostle Paul says, when I was a child I spoke as a child and I behaved as a child and so on. But when I became a man I put away childish things. And he also talks about, we drink the milk first but as we grow up we’re able to take the meat. And I think there is a little of that involved. It’s very easy for us to say, Ok, the Lord can do this, he can do anything, and I’m not limiting God but I’m going to say that while God will be able to do things, He doesn’t. God can heal everyone of you from everyone of your diseases miraculously in a few seconds of time. Do you believe that? But He doesn’t do it. I’m I right? God can form a body six feet below the ground and cause an earthquake to erupt the graves and that body can come out alive. He can do it. I don’t doubt it. There is no positive evidence anywhere in the Bible that says He’s ever done it. You find it for me. If you can find it then I’ll agree that he’s done it. But I haven’t found it. The only kind of resurrections I have ever found in the Bible, positively are resurrections in which there was already a body there. Got that?
Who was raised from the dead?
(Wilfred) Lazarus. Two widow’s sons.
(A woman in the audience) Unintelligible
(Wilfred) I figured someone would bring that up. There is no positive evidence that those bodies were formed below the ground and reconstructed.
(A woman in the audience) Unintelligible
(Wilfred) But there was nothing in the graves.
(John) Those bodies weren’t there.
(Wilfred) Why did the graves have to open if there were no bodies in there?
Now, do you want the real key? Would you like to have the real key to understand this? It’s in the Bible. At least it is to my vision. Better take your Bibles and see if we can’t understand it.
Let’s try Hebrews 1:6,
Maybe we should start at number five to get our bearings here. 5
“For unto which of the angels said he at any time," and that “He”
refers to God the Father. “Thou art my Son,” and that is how I
know, because “Son“ is capitalized. And somebody else is saying. “Thou
art may Son. And who’s Son was Christ?
(John) God’s Son.
(Wilfred) “This day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son? 6 And again, when he bringeth in the first begotten into the world, he saith, and let all the angels of God worship him.” Now what is Jesus called in verse 6?
(John) The first begotten.
(Wilfred) If there is a first begotten. Then it has gone beyond the stage of the “only” begotten. Hasn’t it? There would be no point in calling Him the first begotten if there was never going to be another begotten, He would be the “only” begotten. Now He was the “only” begotten Son of God. But He went through an experience known as the sacrifice of Christ in which He is going to give his divine life to others and they are going to be born again into the family of God. And they will be sons of God and joint heirs with Christ. They will also be begotten of God. Did you get that? Jesus was then the first begotten, others are going to come afterwards.
Now lets look further. Revelation 1:5, This will
put another slightly
different slant to this term. Everybody got it? 5 “And from Jesus
Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the
dead," now, He is the first begotten of the dead, not the only
begotten, the first begotten. If He is the first begotten of the dead
then there will be others begotten of the dead. Right? What does that
mean? Oh, you may say, that means He was resurrected. And I am not
going to deny that. I am sure that’s what it means. But I want to point
out to you that Moses was one ahead of Him. Since I learned how to
count in school I would have to conclude that Moses was the first
begotten and Jesus must have been the fourth or fifth begotten if that
is what it means, that somebody was resurrected into the body that he
died in a few days before, or a day or two before, or an hour or two
before. Lazarus had been in there for four days and they said that his
body would be stinking by this time. Now the Bible doesn’t say it did,
it was the people that said that. I don’t know for sure, but I am
rather suspicious that God preserved that body, until it was raised
from the dead. But that’s neither here nor there. That’s a little
personal thing thrown in. I don’t throw these personal things in very
often because I don’t expect you to take something just because I think
so. If I can’t prove it so, what difference does it make, let’s forget
it. But that is possible, that that body was persevered until it was
raise from the dead.
So, maybe there is another meaning to this first begotten of the dead. Maybe. If Christ is the first begotten of the dead He’s the first one that has gone through a certain experience in a matter of a resurrection that nobody else has gone through before or He couldn’t be called he first begotten. I’m I right? So, let’s go a little further.
James 1:18 I think this time we’ll take it slowly so you won’t get indigestion here. 18 "Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of first-fruits of his creatures." Now here’s the word first-fruits introduced. What are first-fruits?
(John) Those that come first.
(Wilfred) Those that come first. And it is supplied in the Old Testament in what connection?
(John) The wave sheaf.
(Wilfred) Yes, The crops that grew, that the Lord gave life to and because of their gratitude to God for what God had done for them to give them this food. They were to take the first fruits of this and offer it to God as a symbol of their appreciation; I think that's it in a nutshell.
(John) And Sister White says that it is a symbol of the resurrection.
(Wilfred) Oh good. A symbol of the resurrection.
(John) The presenting of the wave sheaf was a symbol of the resurrection.
(John) And that wave sheaf was constituted of that which came first.
(Wilfred) Right. And there is a though there, I won’t comment on it now. It’s hard for me to know what parts to give and what parts not to give in the progression because I don’t want to get you confused I want to take it as easy as I can.
First Corinthians 15, and when we get all these pieces maybe we can just put them together. I told you that the key to this thing was a little complex. I can state it very simply but you might not see it if I did it that way. First Corinthians 15 down about 15.
15 “Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God,” He’s saying, this is Paul saying, I’m accused of being a false witness because we have testified of God that He raised up Christ. Because Paul said that He was accused of being a false witness. “Whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not.” So they were discussing about the resurrection, do you remember the Sadducees didn’t believe in the resurrection, was it? And the Pharisees did or the other way around? And they had a little squabble sometimes about that, and Paul had been called into question about believing in a resurrection from the dead. See? So, he said, well then, I have been called a false witness because I testified that God raised up Christ from the dead whom He didn’t raise up. Obviously if there is no resurrection of the dead. 16 “For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: 17 And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins. 18 Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished." No hope then if there is no resurrection. They’re gone. Well, we’d better go on a little further. 19 "If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable. 20 But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the first-fruits of them that slept."
All right, now, here in the Bible through the voice of Paul applies the first-fruits of them that slept, the first-fruits of the resurrection to Christ in the sense that He is risen, and because He is risen then others are going to risen too. But others have risen before this. But what is the significance of the first-fruits of them that slept? Moses, Elijah, and Enoch are in Heaven already. Does anyone want to suggest something? Do you think it's fair play to call Him the first-fruits of them that slept? Yes?
(A woman in the audience) Unintelligible
(Wilfred) Yes, but isn’t Paul talking here about Christ being risen from the tomb? I think he is.
(A man in the audience) Could it be that Jesus’ resurrection was the first resurrection after the sacrifice had been made? So He could be the first.
(Wilfred) We've got some brains here.
(A woman in the audience) This would have been His second death.
(Wilfred) There was something about the experience of Christ that is different from any other resurrection. And this brother here has hit the nail on the head and we are going to come to it in a minute. Yes sir?
(Another man in the audience) Christ conquered death whereas Moses did not. Moses and others raised of the Lord, Christ conquered death.
(Wilfred) Who raised Christ from the dead?
(John) By his Father.
(A woman in the audience) Didn’t He say that He would lay down His life and He would take it up again?
(Wilfred) Yes, He did. Read verse 15. Anybody to read it out loud?
(John) 15 "Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God, because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ:"
(Wilfred) Who does Paul say raised Christ?
(Wilfred) Wasn’t it James here that said the same thing? I read another one here a few minutes ago that said the same thing. And that’s another problem, because Sister White says He came forth from the tomb by a power that was inherent in Himself. And I’ll bet you can’t explain that and maybe you can.
(A man in the audience) Verse 22 gives part of the answer. 22 "For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive."
(Wilfred) Yes, That’s right. We have already dealt with this. We have shown you that nobody has eternal life except through the sacrifice of Christ in which He gave his eternal life into the hand of the Father through the Everlasting Covenant and the Father is now administering that lifeblood of Christ to his people. Christ gave his life and took our death. That’s the only way we can have eternal life. And in this sense, and I hope you get this, we are born again. The Bible says, except a man be born again he cannot see the Kingdom of Heaven. He is to be born physically, but he is also to be born of the Spirit. And the Bible is full of that. And I have some texts here tonight that I can read. But, I think Adventists are familiar with this aspect that maybe I don’t have to go through all that. To be born of God means to be born of the spirit. And whose spirit was that that God is administering to his people to initiate the rebirth? Whose spirit? Then you are born again by a power that was inherent in Christ. And what Spirit was it that raised Christ from the dead?
(John) The Holy Spirit.
(Wilfred) And who’s Spirit was
(John) The very soul of the life of Christ.
(Wilfred) The very soul of the Life of Christ she says. That was the power that was inherent in Himself. His physical body was dead in the tomb, there was no life in it. If there had been life in it, it would not have been dead. The power that raised that body from the dead was through the hand of the Father, The Father used the power of the life of Christ to raise that physical body of Jesus from the dead.
(John) Which was the Holy Ghost.
(Wilfred) Which was the Holy Ghost. Which was the life of Christ, which was inherent in Himself. Mystery? Well, a dead corpse can’t be alive, if it is alive it is not a dead corpse. And Jesus was a dead corpse in the tomb.
(John) We read last week that all that compose the life and intelligence of Jesus, slept while He was in the tomb. That’s from the Bible Commentary.
(Wilfred) He slept. All right. We got a little off the track. Let’s get back on verse 23, “But every man in his own order:” He’s talking about the resurrection there and in the previous verses. “Christ the first-fruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming.” Now do you get the sequence? Who comes first?
(Wilfred) Then who comes afterward?
(John) The first-fruits.
(Wilfred) All right. What about these people who have gone before Him? Maybe we'd better not labor that point. But there is some experience in which Christ is the first-fruits of the resurrection. And others are going to follow after at his coming. And I have pointed out to you that there are two comings.
What was it that came to the tomb of Jesus to raise Him from the dead?
(John) His Spirit.
(Wilfred) His Spirit. What is going to come to god’s people before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord to raise them from their spiritual death?
(John) The same Spirit.
(Wilfred) The same Spirit. Now watch it. That same Spirit is going to bring an experience of a resurrection to some people in harmony with the experience of the first-fruits. He is the head of the new body of Christ, The members of the body are still to come, but they have to be restored as members of the body of Christ. And the marriage union has to take place so that they become one flesh. Ephesians 5. And the body of Christ is restored. What was, how shall I put this? It is simply, Christ in you. That’s it. He gave His life to share. And He was the first partaker of it. He gave it back there in the heavenly sanctuary court before He came to this world, that’s where He gave it. And He had two witnesses’ there that He called up from this earth to see it. We’ve shown you that. And He was born completely ignorant of His former life until He reached a certain level. And He became a person in a human body who had lived before.
(John) Without knowing it.
(Wilfred) Without knowing it. Now, the devil has picked this up and He is scattering the idea of reincarnation all over the country. And I hope that some of you people don’t go out and say, Wilf Johnson believes in reincarnation. Wilf Johnson is telling you something that’s in the Bible. That’s all he’s doing. And Jesus was the first-fruits of the dead. The first begotten of the dead. He was the first member of the new body of Christ, the head. And the other members in particular, and you can find this in Paul’s writings, it is as clear as a bell, they will become members of the body of Christ and then the marriage union will take place before the close of probation. And the words of Jesus to those Jews back there will be fulfilled. He said, Destroy this temple and in three days I will raise it up. And all the words of Jesus have a deeper meaning. He wasn’t just talking about the physical temple, He wasn’t just talking about His physical human body, He was talking about the body of Christ, that He had relinquished, the one that Moses had seen, the one that He had told the Jews that unless you eat my flesh and drink my blood you’ve got no life in you, that’s the one He was talking about. And at the last supper He committed to his disciples the New Covenant, The Everlasting Covenant, Sister White says that. And that Everlasting Covenant said that His life was to be given to be shared with his people. And where is the life, pray tell?
(John) In the Spirit.
(Wilfred) And where is the Spirit?
(A man from the audience) No man can see Him.
(Wilfred) But where is He in reference to a person?
(John) Within us.
(Wilfred) In the body. God breathed into Adams nostrils the breath of life and man became a living soul. What happened to the body of Christ? And I can’t answer this one. But what happened to the body of Christ when He gave up the Ghost? The ghost of his eternal life. Before He came to take on humanity.
(John) It slept.
(Wilfred) I don’t know what happened to it. But I do know one thing, Jesus said at the last supper that that body was broken. And to me that means divided. So, that the saints can have a piece. Now it refers to his Word, his Word is a symbol of his body. And we eat his Word and we are partaking of the body of Christ. Sister White bears that out. But what does that Word do for us? It restores in us the mind of Christ. When the Spirit is added to the ingredients of that body then the mind of Christ becomes alive in us. Can you see that? The thoughts that were in the mind of Christ He wrote in his Word before that body went to sleep. He gave it to his prophets, and wrote it. Now when Jesus came to this world with a human brain He partook of that Word himself so that the Word was restored in his brain and He was anointed with the Holy Ghost so the Word was made alive in his brain. And the mind of Christ was restored. Jesus was Christ. He was one who had laid down his life and now was alive again in a human temple.
(A man from the audience) And that was at his baptism wasn’t it?
(Wilfred) Well, it took place from the time of his birth to the time of his baptism, and I think it continued after that. I don’t think we can say at any stage it was complete. But I don’t know.
(John) At the age of twelve He first recognized who He was.
(Wilfred) But prior to that his mind had been filling up with the ingredients, you see. And then the Spirit came and began to assemble those ingredients into a pattern of understanding.
Why did God do this? Why did Christ come? Well there were many reasons. One reason that you may have missed and I want to bring it out because it ties into a key that I’m going to give you in a few minutes. Hopefully.
This statement is found in volume 7 of the Bible Commentary page 924. It says, "He lived out the character of God through the human body which God had prepared for Him."
Who made this body for Him? How did He make it? He used the natural processes that He has established for preparation of every human body to do it. And in the Bible, in Hebrews it says, A body thou has prepared for me, lo in the volume of the book it is written of me, I come or something to that effect. I didn’t get it exactly right but those are the thoughts. The body was prepared and He came into this body. How did He come in, suddenly? No, He grew up into it. And as the Spirit came to fix those ingredients and to crystallize them, to unite them, to coordinate them, to integrate them, the thought patterns of the original mind of Christ began to grow and be restored into the mind of Jesus. He was Christ. That is the process whereby Jesus went to sleep in the first death and was restored to life. He was in this sense the first-fruit of the resurrection, He rose from the dead the first time. The second time He died it was different, He died the death of the sinner. From which there was no hope of a resurrection. And He was still raised again to life. And that’s another problem. Let me read on, “He blessed the world by living out in human flesh the life of God. Thus showing that He had the power to unite humanity to divinity." And that gives you the key to the meaning of this word divinity, Living out the life of God. She says, I’ll read it again; "He blessed the world by living out in human flesh the life of God. Thus showing that He had the power to unite humanity to divinity."
Now, she tells us in Christ’s Object Lessons That it is only through the union of divinity and humanity that sin can be overcome and the divine life can be lived. It is through the divine nature of which we may partake even as Jesus did. We may partake of that same divine nature, we may partake of that same divine character and live a life of sinlessness. And if we are ever going to live a life of sinlessness that’s how we are going to do it. And she tells us in Christ’s Object Lessons that the union of divinity and humanity is what is symbolized by the marriage in that parable. Does it make sense now? The marriage of the Lamb to His saints which is to take place before the close of probation. It involves the reception of the Holy Ghost by the saints and the restoration in the minds of the saints of the mind of Christ from the ingredients that the saint has been digging out of the Word and in symbol, eating the flesh of the Son of God. The Holy Spirit is the life symbolized by the blood, so it says, Except you eat my flesh and drink my blood you have no life in you. And that’s it. And at the last supper Jesus went through that ritual to establish that thought in the minds of his disciples. They were to eat his body and drink his blood. And with that power which is the life of Christ Himself they were to be restored spiritually and physically as Jesus was. He was the first begotten, they follow after.
Well, I’d better move on or I won’t get through. Don’t get tired, try to hold all these things in mind here and we’ll clinch it here shortly.
Now maybe we can turn to Revelation 14:4 we’ll pick up another little piece here, it talked about the first-fruits. Christ was the first-fruits but there are going to be others who will be first-fruits unto Him, and who are they? Revelation 14 verse 4, “These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the first-fruits unto God and to the Lamb.” And who are they?
(John) The hundred and forty four thousand.
(Wilfred) Go back to verse 1 to find that out. So that identifies those who are going to have a similar experience as Christ. They are identified as the hundred and forty four thousand and she tells us that they sing a song, the Bible does too, of Moses and the Lamb, and she says that nobody can learn that song, the Bible says that too, save the hundred and forty four thousand. And she explains that that song is a song of their experience. They have the same experience that the Lamb had.
(John) This raises another one of those little problems because here it plainly says that the hundred and forty four thousand are the first-fruits but in Sister White’s writings those who were resurrected when Christ was resurrected are called the first-fruits also. How can they be members of the hundred and forty four thousand as well as the first-fruits also? And there needs to be something that's going to coordinate that.
(Wilfred) Excellent. Did you see that? Those who are raised at the resurrection of Christ as a token that the resurrection is actually going to take place, the first-fruits they are called, and yet the Bible says that the first-fruits are the hundred and forty four thousand, being the first-fruits unto God and the Lamb. That’s what it says.
(A man in the audience) How about in Corinthians, where we were in chapter 15 and verse 44...?
(Wilfred) Yes, You are going a little ahead of us on that. Verse 44. “It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body.” No, you are going a little ahead of us here. This is moving into the general resurrection which is not what I’m talking about at the moment. Ok?
Now, I gave you Revelation 14:4. Let’s try now, Romans 8:28, you may get tired of me looking up all these references but I want to get enough material on these tapes here so that anybody who questions what we were saying will be able to go through it. Romans 8:28, 28 “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.“ Did you get that qualification? They are called according to His purpose. 29 “For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, What did He predestine them to be?
(John) To be conformed.
(Wilfred) "To be conformed to the image of his Son." We’re talking about the very same thing again. The restoration of the image of God in His people.
(John) That ties right in with the statement when the image of God is perfectly reproduced in his people He will come for them, and this is the hundred and forty four thousand again.
(Wilfred) Right, Now let’s go on. It says then, “Conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.” Is that not clear? He is the firstborn among many brethren who are predestined to reflect His image perfectly. Got that? 30 “Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called, and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.” So what is going to be the end result? Justification and glorification. That’s number 6 I guess. Firstborn, and we’ve got that terminology now.
Colossians 1:15, And if you want to know who it’s talking about you have to go back to verse 13, “Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:” The Father has done this. 14 "In whom we have redemption through his blood,” that’s the blood of the Son, “even the forgiveness of sins: 15 “Who,” talking about the Son, “is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature.” Nobody is going to be born ahead of Christ. Now, He was the firstborn originally, the original Son of God. And I don’t understand that birth. He was the firstborn in the cradle of Bethlehem and He was the firstborn on the morning of the resurrection. He was the firstborn all the way through. The firstborn of every creature. And in every experience He’s the first one. And anybody who’s gone through an experience prior to Him, there is something different about that experience than what Jesus went through or He couldn’t be the firstborn. And I can’t answer you all the problems that arise from here, I told you that there are new problems arising. But let me assure you there are answers. God’s truth is just not dead it will continue to expand. So He’s called here the firstborn of every creature. That’s number 7.
And I want to go a little further on that one. 16 “For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:” So, you see that He was the firstborn in the sense that He came before everyone else. And that’s what it says in verse 17. 17 “And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.” Now, here we have what I was telling you minutes ago. Right here it is in black and white. 18 “And he is the head of the body.” What body?
(John) The Church.
(Wilfred) The Church. Well you say brother Johnson, that word “body” there means “group”. We say a body of people, a group of people. Yes, it does. I believe that. But I hope you have been with me long enough to discover that the Word of God is not limited to one interpretation. And I can read you passages from the Spirit of Prophesy that verify that that is correct. And that word “body” has more that one meaning. It is talking also about the body of Christ which is his church, in a deeper sense. Who is the beginning? The firstborn, now watch that next word, from the dead. Christ was the firstborn from the dead. If He is the firstborn from the dead, somebody else is going to be raised from the dead. But He became what in the body of the Church?
(John) The head.
(Wilfred) The head. And those raised from the dead are going to become what?
(John) Members in particular of the body of Christ.
(Wilfred) And the wedding takes place when?
(John) Before the close of probation.
(Wilfred) So when must they be living?
(John) Before the close of probation.
(Wilfred) Do they have to be living to be married?
(Wilfred) Why, certainly. How can the Spirit of God come into a dead person, whose body has disintegrated in the grave and reproduce the image of God in a thing that isn’t there? Does that make sense? That doesn’t make sense. Is that the way He did it with Jesus? He is the example, He is the first-fruits, the first begotten, the firstborn, He is the way, follow Him. Take up your cross and follow Him. The hundred and forty four thousand have the same experience as He has. They sing the same song that He sings and that Moses sang. What did Moses sing? Deliverance from Egypt. Which is?
(John) Deliverance from sin.
(Wilfred) Well, How can a dead man have deliverance from sin? If you’re going to have deliverance from sin Brother and Sister you’ve got to have it while you are alive. Sin is a decision. A dead man can’t make a decision. Let’s think reasonably here. “The firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence." Now if He is the firstborn from the dead there are others who are going to follow after.
Let’s take one more here, number 8. This is Hebrews 12:23, just an interesting comment here. 23 “To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect." Shall we take it again? 23 “To the general assembly and church of the firstborn," Who was the firstborn? The Church of Christ the firstborn. “Which are written in heaven,” The margin says, “enrolled” their names are in Heaven. They are the ones who have accepted the Lord Jesus Christ and their names are written in the Lambs book of life. “And to God the Judge of all,” And in another place it says, all judgment has been committed to the Son. Here it says God judges, another one of those things we have to except as it says. “And to the spirits of just men made perfect." There are just men who are not made perfect. Is that right? I am just in the eyes of God if I follow the conditions but I may not be perfect. But what is going to happen to those first-fruits who are going to follow Christ? They are going to follow Him all the way and they will be perfect. So it’s talking about here, the spirits of just men who have been made perfect. They are the general assembly and Church of the firstborn. The hundred and forty four thousand.
Well, you might question some of that, and I wouldn’t blame you if you did. But I thought you would be interested in seeing that text.
Now, I want to go back to John 3. We have tried to show you that in order to clarify some of the problems we’ve presented it would appear to be necessary that certain people be alive on the earth during the great crisis and the purification period of God’s people.
(John) Before the close of
(Wilfred) Yes. And we’ve
been trying to show you that. And the question then arises, how can
they be there, when the resurrection doesn’t occur until the second
coming of Christ? Last week I pointed out to you that the resurrection
occurs at the last trump. And we think in terms of last trump being
just before Jesus comes, and I do not quarrel with this, but I am
seeing a deeper meaning in that last trump statement. Because the last
trump is the last one in a series, and that the Bible interprets itself
and you will find that there is a series of seven trumpets in
Revelation. And at the
last trump the door to the holy apartment was
shut and the door to the most holy opened and the Ark of the Testament
was seen in the most holy apartment.
(John) So the last trump began in 1844.
(Wilfred) Which would indicate that the resurrection in some form or other was due since 1844. Now, without going any further, if we just simply make that statement, that would account for the fact that the door to the holy apartment could be shut and that the sins that were confessed since 1844 were placed on the head of the scapegoat with special mention, different from ones that had gone before. Do you understand? And it will account for other things but I haven’t got into that yet, the investigative judgment.
Let me read to you the sample again. The sample was Jesus, He came into a human body that was born of a woman before He realized who He was, his character was being tested. He lived out the character of God through the human body which God had prepared for Him. Did He ever sin?
(Wilfred) How come He didn’t sin? When He was a little boy He had a divine character which enabled Him in his humanity to build up a human character of sinlessness. And that’s the experience that God’s people are going to have to have. And it is only through the reception of the divine character that it can be accomplished. But there is no other Christ. Not even an angel could have come and done it. And God is going to prove that today. He’s going to prove it. But He’s also going to prove that it is possible for one to accept the divine provisions and having done that to become like Christ, to reflect his image.
Now, Jesus lived out the character of God in the human body that God had prepared for Him. The character of God had been questioned, his integrity had been challenged, and God submitted Himself in the person of Jesus in a human body to an investigative judgment before the eyes of all the universe. The books of God’s character were opened. Did you follow me? And today, the books of God’s people are being opened to the universe in human bodies living in this world since 1844, the characters that were developed by these old saints all down through history are being reproduced in human minds as the character of Christ was reproduced in the human brain of Jesus. And every last one of them is sinning, but those sins have gone beforehand to judgment, the door is shut. God has accepted them; He is now investigating and proving before the universe. He knows who is saved and who isn’t. He doesn’t have to do it for his sake; He knew that Jesus was perfect, that He would live a sinless life. He didn’t have to prove it for his sake. Who was he proving it for?
(John) The universe.
(Wilfred) And whom did He want to silence?
(Several voices at once in the audience) Unintelligible
(Wilfred) God does not want to take any person into the Kingdom of Heaven that anybody is going to have a question about. Nor does He want to destroy any man in hell that anybody in the future will have a question about. But, how is He going to do it? I’m sharing with you what God showed me. He’s going to do it exactly the way He did it with Jesus. Jesus was the firstborn, the first-fruits, the first begotten, and His family follows after. And the Bible says when it talks about all those Old Testament saints who by faith were accepted of God in Hebrews chapter 11, I think it is; The Bible says, “They without us should not be made perfect.”. That’s what my Bible says. And starting with the Old Testament saints starting back in 1844 God opened the door to the most holy apartment and showed them his law. And as He said back in Malachi chapter 4 verse 3, “Remember ye the law of Moses which I command him in Horeb for all Israel with the statutes and judgments you are going to be tested in the judgment on the law of Moses. And the Old Testament saints from 1844 on down were tested on the law. They taught the law, the law, the law, until Sister White says in 1888 that it was as dry as the hills of Gilboa. And then He gave them the message of righteousness by faith all over again. And the New Testament saints have to be tested. I don’t know whether you are following this. But the character of Abraham has been tested, or is being tested, or will be tested in a human brain born in this world since 1844 so that all the universe can see it. And this testing time Sister White talks about since 1844, this testing time, and she tells us what you’re tested on. You follow?
Oh, but I’m not finished yet. There have been over-comers in each of the eras of the Church's history, over-comers in the sense that they accepted the full provisions that God had made for them up to that time. Not until 1844 was the door to the most holy apartment opened so that they without us should not be perfect in the sense that they come to attain to the fullness of the character of Christ. Now, there was a difference between the perfection of the saints in the Old Testament and the perfection of the saints just before probation closes. I can’t go into the details because I don’t understand them all. All I know is that the door to the most holy apartment was opened and the cleansing of the sanctuary did not start until 1844 and therefore they could not be made perfect without us. The cleansing of the sanctuary did not take place in Israel’s day during the daily services through the year, they didn’t take place until the Day of Atonement. That’s clearly portrayed. I am pointing out to you what the Bible says.
(John) It says in Zechariah 13, “In that day there should be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitance of Jerusalem for sin and uncleanness.” And that is referring to that cleansing that’s available since 1844.
(Wilfred) All right, That’s good John. Thank you.
Now, I want to read a little from John chapter 3 here. We’ll start with verse 3, this is where Nicodemus comes to Jesus and he says, Rabbi, we know that you’re a big teacher come from God and no man can do these things that you’re doing, all these miracles. Then in verse 3 He says, 3 "Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee," Now, when the word ‘Verily” is used in the scriptures, it means “Watch what is coming afterward”. This is very true and important. And He repeats it two times. Jesus said, “Verily, Verily, I say to you Nicodemus except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” And I’m suggesting to you that that means more than what it says on the surface, Because Sister White says that all the words of Jesus do. And unless a man is born again and receives of the Spirit of God as Jesus received it during the Day of Atonement his soul temple and sanctuary cannot be cleansed. Because the cleansing of the sanctuary does not take place until the Day of Atonement. Did I get my point across?
Sister White has a statement about taking the Bible just as it reads. I forget where it is. I think it is in one of the manuscripts someplace. But Brothers and Sisters, when the Bible says, Through the angel this same Jesus shall so come in like manner as ye have seen Him go. Did the angel mean what he said or do you think it means something else? Now when Jesus says, Verily, Verily, I say unto you except a man be born again he cannot see the Kingdom of God. Do you think He means what He says? Well, Nicodemus, he couldn’t understand that. And what did Jesus do with Nicodemus? Well, Jesus knew that Nicodemus couldn’t grasp this thing yet. It was a long time in the future before all the truth was going to be brought by the Holy Spirit to God’s people. Right? So Jesus did the same with Nicodemus as He’s done on other occasions, He talks to the people at their level. And I hope I’m not talking to you beyond your level. But the day is here Brothers and Sisters when we are going to have to understand the plain teachings of the Word of God or Christ cannot come. If you don’t believe that just look over past Adventist history, we should have been there by now. We have been told that I think, three times. Three different occasions, we could have been in the Kingdom before, at three different points in history. And we are still not there. Something is missing! But when He, the Spirit of truth is come He will guide you into all truth. And the truth is the sword of the Lord, and the sword of the Lord is going to cause the shaking. It is going to bring on God’s people the persecution and suffering which is going to bring about the purification of his people which is going to bring the latter rain to his people, which is going to close the work, restore the image of God in his people, which will close the probation, which will bring Jesus to this world. Can you follow me? I'm bringing you the sword of the Lord and it is going to cut. And you’re going to say, Johnson you’re crazy. That’s what people told me thirty years ago. And I almost believed it. But I went back to God and I stayed with Him ever since. And I have taken all the dirt and all the gaff, and I’ll continue to take it. I promised God that if He would open to me his Word so I could understand it and it made logic to me so I could honestly say that I believe Him, I am a genuine true Seventh-day Adventist Christian even though I am a sinner; I said that I would do anything He asked me to do. And He did His part and now He is asking me to do my part. And I’m doing it. And I thank you people for your cooperation, for your prayers. Some of you have been just out of this world to me. Just out of this world. And I thank God for you. But don’t accept anything I say without going to the book and checking it, and going to God asking Him to show you plainly, is it true or is it false. And don’t be afraid to disagree with me. I’m not here to try to make myself some big one. I’m only here fulfilling the commission that God has given me to do; because I promised Him I would do it. And it’s been the hardest thing that I have ever had to do in my whole life. I can’t explain that to you. You’d have to experience it to know. I’m telling you what God’s says, “Except a man be born again, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.” And that means that unless he is born of the Spirit, as Jesus explained it to Nicodemus, he cannot become a member of the Kingdom of God. And John again talks about it further over here; you don’t need to turn to it yet we may look at it a little later. He said, he that is born of God does not commit sin. What position has he reached? The perfection of Jesus, He did not commit sin. It’s that simple. Now, I apologize to anybody who has explained it in some other way. Every man explains it to the best of his ability as he sees it to that point, and Jesus explained to Nicodemus to the best of Nicodemus’s ability to understand it at that point, and don’t think Nicodemus really understood it. Neither could Nicodemus understand a physical interpretation of it. It didn’t make sense to him. And it doesn’t make sense to a lot of people today. The incarnation of Christ doesn’t make sense to a lot of people, they don’t believe it; they don’t believe it. But I want to tell you something, you don’t need to get all turned upside down about this. Just wait, just wait. But at least do one thing, get into the books and fill your mind with the Word of God. Fill it, keep all the other junk out. Then the Spirit of God can come and have something to work with. He’s not looking around for tools. And if what I am telling you is true it won’t be very long before you'll know it. Jesus knew it, He knew it. He knew who He was and what his commission was and so will you. You’re going to have a taste of the same experience of Jesus so you can sing the same song and you are going to come out of sin because when you are born of God you don’t commit sin.
(A woman in the audience) Is that the hundred and forty four thousand only?
(Wilfred) Those are the only ones I'm talking about. I mentioned the investigative judgment but what I said about that is as far as I can go on that at the moment.
(A woman in the audience) Unintelligible
(Wilfred) But you’ll forgive me if I just stay with the hundred and forty four thousand at the present moment because that’s what concerns you. We’re living now in the day when God is gathering in his people to mount Zion. That’s the day we’re living in. That’s the commission, I have to bring that message. And while we can be concerned about other things and we can study other things, and we can think about other things. Let’s not speculate. Let’s stay with the things that we can bring out of the books that apply to us. God is concerned that we understand the things that are coming to pass in our experience. And before they come to pass He has told us and promised us that He will give us a warning. And that’s what He’s doing right now.
5 “He answered, Verily, Verily, I say unto thee, except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God. 6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.” And that’s how He explained it to Nicodemus because that is what Nicodemus needed to know and that is what all the Christians down through all the ages to our time needed to know. Today, God has a special message for his people, I read you that. We need to know how it applies to us. It applies to us the same way it applied to Nicodemus. But it goes one step further, the truth is unfolding, new truth does not destroy the old. It is not independent of the old, it builds upon it and unfolds from it. You got me? So, He says, 7 “Marvel not that I said unto thee,” he’s talking to you, “ye must be born again.” Now, I want to, Oh, there’s many more texts that I should bring here. But I want to give you this key even though I don’t get all the text to you. Maybe I can get it done later if I can't get it done tonight.
Do you see now how the apostle Paul can be here right now? And his character is being tested, and he is still asleep so far as his life is concerned back there. The books are open in absentia, but he is living the life of his character even as Jesus lived the life of the character of God. Don’t you see? Can’t you see that the character of God was reproduced in those twelve billion brain cells of Jesus, and from the time of His infancy He was functioning according to that character. So will the apostle Paul, but he will be a sinner. Nobody can live a life like Christ did. Until he has that final cleansing of the soul temple that takes place on the Day of Atonement and Paul has to be here on the Day of Atonement to get it. Can’t you understand? And Paul is going to because of his victory and overcoming and the character that he built, the only thing that he can really take with him through the grave. He is going to function by that character, and all the sins that he is committing during this judgment period are caused by the devils interference, and when the Lord takes the devil away, Paul lives without sin. When the Lord lets the devil at him, Paul sins. The difference between Paul and somebody else who hasn’t built a character according to the divined pattern, the difference is, that when the devil is at him he sins when the devil is away from him he still sins. And before the universe this demonstration is going on right now. And it has been going on since 1844. And the sins that are committed by God’s people are therefore placed upon the head of the scapegoat as He leaves the sanctuary. All the sins that are confessed by God’s people since 1844 are placed on the head of the scapegoat. Can you see what I am getting at? And the investigated judgment, the books are opened before the universe. And the fellow who is a overcomer in the Laodecean period is going to partake of the outpouring of the final cleansing blood that cleanses the sanctuary, changes the heart, transforms it to the image of God so that he has the same character as Jesus had, and he cannot sin. But he can if he chooses. But his love for God will not permit him, He doesn’t want to sin, he hates sin, he recoils at sin just like Jesus did. Jesus was the first-fruits, he follows after. He follows the Lamb whithersoever He goes through his experience and he sings the same song. Got it? So Paul can say, The dead in Christ shall arise first then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds so shall we ever be with the Lord.
Now let me finish this. Just before Jesus comes, after the investigative judgment is finished and the test through the final conflict after the close of probation is finished and the apostle Paul has demonstrated that He can live before a Holy God without an intercessor then suddenly in a twinkling of an eye Paul is going to wake up, and Peter is going to wake up, and Paul can talk to Peter in his old language and say, Do you remember Peter when we had that little argument back there in Antioch and Paul will know positively who he is, and Peter will know positively who he is. Sister White says the one hundred and forty four thousand will know positively, and they are perfectly oriented in the modern environment and society. Can you think of a more rational, logical, systematic, scientific way for God to do it than that? Why if Paul had come suddenly out of his grave in all his old garb and Peter would come out in his old garb. What’s that? That’s an electric light. What’s an electric light? They would be frightened silly. Oh, you would say, God could fix that up. Yes He could. God could. I told you God could heal you of all your diseases just like that if He wanted to. But God doesn’t do it. God could have sent Jesus down here full-grown but He didn’t do it. Why not? Because Jesus was the first-fruits, the first begotten, and his saints follow after.
Now let’s just see what we have done. All of the over-comers in all of the periods of the Church's history are born again in the last generation. They are gathered as the Bible says. He goes out to all nations and gathers in his people and assembles them. You’ll find it in the Bible.
(John) It says they will be gathered the second time.
(Wilfred) The second time. And here they are, they have gone through their investigative judgment, they are victorious over sin they have experienced the cleansing and they are all among the hundred and forty four thousand and go into the temple with Jesus on Mount Zion. All the over-comers in all the eras of the Church's history, and Abraham and all the rest of them, they are there. Is God Fair? Did sister White tell the truth when she said that the living saints, one hundred and forty four thousand in number, did she tell the truth? Yes, she told the truth. Did she tell the truth when she saw that she was among the hundred and forty four thousand? Now, you have another problem, I know. Don’t bring it up now. Did she tell the truth when that other women was going to be with the hundred and forty four thousand? Yes, she told the truth. Did she tell the truth when she said, That all those who have fallen asleep in the third angel’s message are going to come forth in the special resurrection to see Jesus come? Yes, she told the truth. How are they going to get there? They are going to be born again. God is going to prepare a body for them like He prepared for Jesus, who was the first-fruits.
John, have you got that text on the seed?
(John) Yes, Would you like to read it or shall I read it?
(Wilfred) You read it.
(John) This is page 243 of Testimonies to Ministries, and I have never had anyone but Brother Johnson explain this to me. It says, “The human agent plants the seed, and God waters it and causes His sun to shine upon it, and up springs the tiny blade. Here is the lesson God gives to us concerning the resurrection of the body, and the renewing of the heart. We are to learn of spiritual things from the development of the earthly.”
(Wilfred) “The human agent plants the seed, and God waters it and causes His sun to shine upon it, and up springs the tiny blade. Here is the lesson God gives to us concerning the resurrection of the body, and the renewing of the heart. How do plants continue to live? Well, they don’t they die. How does the species continue to live? The seed regenerates. How do my fingernails continue to live? They regenerate. How does the human race continue to live? It regenerates. Why do you suppose God was so fussy about who they married back there? You know, the Bible says, the disciples asked Him about what they were going to receive, you know, because they had left all and followed Him. He said, in the regeneration you will set on twelve thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel. The word “regeneration” means generated again. That’s exactly what it means, generated again. My fingernail is lost, it’s generated again. My body dies and is lost, what happens? It is generated again. How was it generated the first time?
(Same woman) By natural means.
(Wilfred) How is it going to be
generated again if it is a regeneration?
(John) By natural means.
(Wilfred) The body, the body, that’s how the seed is, that’s how the seed does. And she says here, here is the lesson that God gives us concerning, (1) The resurrection of the body and (2) The renewing of the heart. Do you see the two aspects that I was trying to tell you that Jesus was telling Nicodemus? It’s the resurrection of the body and the renewing of the heart. Both of those things are involved and it’s right there in that statement.
(John) They are both involved with being born again.
(Wilfred) Now, let me give you something from the Bible. I Corinthians 15:35, “But some man will say, How are the dead raised up, and with what body do they come?” You know what He’s talking about don’t you? He’s talking about how the dead come and what body do they come with. That’s what He’s talking about. Now see what He says, 36 “Thou fool, that which thou sowest is not quickened, except it die:" The Body that goes into the ground is not the one that comes back out. The seed you put in the ground is not the one that comes back out. It’s the pattern of the seed that comes up in a new seed, a new plant, right? Watch it. 37 “And that which thou sowest, thou sowest not that body that shall be,” The body that goes to the grave is not the body that shall be. “But bare grain, it may chance of wheat or of some other grain: 38 But God giveth it a body as it hath pleased him, and to every seed his own body." Now how does that body come that God gives you? It grows from the seed.
Now with that statement that Sister White makes and this statement here, we’ve got the key to the resurrection of the hundred and forty four thousand. So that all these problems we’ve been talking about that demand these people be here in order to fulfill the Bible, comes truth. What about that text, “It is appointed unto man once to die and after this, the judgment.” Now, if the hundred and forty four thousand come on the scene now for the first time, they never die and that text is not true. It doesn’t say, it is appointed unto all man except the hundred and forty four thousand once to die and after this, the judgment. It doesn’t say that. It says, "It is appointed unto all man once to die," Now you’ve got more problems I know. Don’t bring them up just now. Do you see how that the hundred and forty four thousand fulfill that text? If you accept the key that we have just given you. Do you see that? And I don’t see any heads shaking one way or the other. Do you see it?
Paul is dead, then comes his judgment. How does he come? How does the body come? It comes from the seed. That’s what it says. And it grows and the character is judged. How was Christ’s character judged? How was God’s character judged? In the body of Jesus. Who gave Him that body? God did, the Bible says. How did God make that body? Through the seed. What seed? The seed of Mary and the Seed of Christ, the Holy Spirit. So that He had the divine characteristics, and He had the human characteristics. And the divinity overshadowed the human and enabled him to build a prefect human character without sin. Can’t you see that? Now Paul is going to come from the seed. But the divine seed comes only after the investigative judgment of Paul to prove to the universe that Paul could not live without sin until he partook of the divine nature. Christ is in all and all. Don’t you see? And the cleansing does not take place until the Day of Atonement. How else can you explain the experience of these people who didn’t live in the Day of Atonement? How else would you ever explain it? The keys are in the Bible, I’ve tried to show it to you. But there is more to it then that. There are more texts as you continue to read and follow The Spirit of Prophesy; I think you’ll find that it starts to make sense. But don’t speculate on the general resurrection. Leave that alone. Leave that alone just now. That comes at the end of the era when everything is all finished. And if God reveals it to somebody I would be happy for somebody to share it with me. He has not revealed it to me. I don’t understand the general resurrection, yet. But I’m perfectly willing to wait unit it takes place and see how it happens. I know how the Bible describes it and it may take place exactly the way the Bible describes it. And it may not. But it doesn’t bother me, all I’m concerned about is that you understand what God is doing with his people now in preparing the hundred and forty four thousand for their experience. Because the devil is counterfeiting it all over the place. There are people all over the world today who are coming up with things that happened in their life when they lived before. And it’s all the devil’s work. It’s all under the principle of Satanic possession and I’ve got plenty of evidence at home in my files to prove that. Lots of files. And Sister White says that the devil will counterfeit everything that God is about to do. Why do you think the devil is so busy counterfeiting that?
(A woman in the audience) Because time is short.
(Wilfred) Because time is so short, and God is about to do it. What purpose would the devil have in counterfeiting it if it wasn’t going to happen? He would be stupid to waste his time doing it.
Do you know that the devil is going to counterfeit the resurrection of the apostles? Because Sister White says so. Why is the devil going to counterfeit the resurrection of the apostles, pray tell?
(John) Because they are going to be resurrected.
(Wilfred) Because they are going to be resurrected.
Well, I’ve given you a terrible slab tonight to chew. I realize it, I know it, I’m fully aware of the implications but I had to do it to fulfill my commission, and I have done it. I hope that you people will be discreet in the way you think about it and the way you use it. Out of consideration and kindness to me I would appreciate you not distorting what I have said and broadcasting it far and wide.
When Jesus came down from the mount of transfiguration He revealed certain things to those three disciples and He told them specifically, please don’t tell anybody about it until after I am raised from the dead. Remember that? Why did He do that? It would have destroyed a part of his influence with the other disciples and with other people. And I am saying the same thing to you. Please don’t discuss this topic with anybody until you are firmly grounded in it from A to Z, and can answer all the questions, and show them from the Bible. And if you do it, then you do it, don’t quote me and say that Wilf Johnson says this or Wilf Johnson says that. Say, the Bible says this and Sister White says this. Is that a reasonable request? Because we are told not to follow any man. So don’t go quoting any man. Now if you start quoting it but don’t believe it, you simple start quoting it, you are transgressing the law of God. Because you are bringing disreproach on one of your brethren. And Jesus’ last prayer, and it ties right in with the sword of the Lord is love your brethren. Do good to them that hate you and persecute you and so on. Well, I don’t hate you and I don’t persecute you. Thank God for that. I might just as well been that way but I’m not because He has taken hold of me, and I hope He hangs on to me.
But if you have any respect for the cause of God at all, I would recommend that you confine your discussion of this topic for the present to folks within this group who have had the background and know what the build-up is. And you may want to listen to the tapes a few times to get thoroughly familiar with the material. But if you feel that it is something you don’t want at all. If it is so foreign to your thinking that you don’t want it, that’s you privilege, shut it off, put it on a shelf. But I would appeal to you to accept the word and council of the Lord not to do injury to those of your brethren who think differently than you do. I have a reason for thinking the way I do and it is not an ugly reason. And if what I am telling you is true I think you will recognize that it is of prime importance that I told you. And when the day comes that all the saints will be perfectly united you will appreciate the fact that you are united by the truth. It will be the truth that will tie your hearts together. And it will be the truth that will be a sword to separate. Can you see that?
(John) Brother Johnson, could I suggest that I think for everyone in the group there is a wonderful chapter that we could all read this coming week. It’s chapter 65, 1st volume of Selective Messages. The whole chapter is entitled “How to meet a controverted point of doctrine”
I just want to get one more text on the tape 1 John 3:9, it talks about the seed, His word which remains in him and he cannot sin because he is born of God.
Well, may the Lord bless us as we continue to study.
Now next week I am not going to plan any specific presentation. I hope we can have one more meeting next week. I’m cutting it pretty close on my own part. But I feel that we should have one more....