This beautiful valley of Jezreel/Megiddo will never see an end-time battle
Last-edit: January 1 2018
In defence of the sidelined God Jehovah, Creator of the Universe and Father of Humanity
‑About the World God loved so much‑
All Christians now and gone before, have tried to reconcile:
(1 John 2:15) Do not be loving either the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. . .
with these words of Jesus recorded for us in John 3:16 “For God loved the world so much that he gave his only-begotten Son, in order that everyone exercising faith in him might not be destroyed* but have everlasting life*.
Which world did He love so much? The one Christians are commanded not to love? Are there different worlds?
Among the many definitions of World, Strong's principal definition of that world in John 3:16 is: an apt and harmonious arrangement or constitution, order, government. This seems to infer an arranger without excluding a specific arrangement.
There are three things Jehovah has orderly arranged relative to that Greek word used in the NT ko´smos <2889> commonly translated World:
A. The universe
B. For mankind to have over it good governance . . . and
C. Israel, the means by which He will fulfil that intended purpose for mankind
Albeit, we need to look at the principal definition and how that relates most exquisitely to Israel.
Here from Strong's Dictionary of Bible Words:
2889 kosmov kosmos kos'-mos
AV-world 186, adorning 1; 187
1) an apt and harmonious arrangement or constitution, order, government
2) ornament, decoration, adornment, i.e. the arrangement of the stars, 'the heavenly hosts', as the ornament of the heavens. #1Pe 3:3
The first one obviously does not apply to the above love-related usage in Scripture.
To implement His ultimate purpose (B) God provided the seed of Abraham, Israel (C) by creating the very special orderly arrangement or world of Israel with laws and a structure of governance administered initially by Priests and Judges and then by a series of Kings on Jehovah's representative throne in conjunction with that same Priesthood.
It was into this world of Israel that Jehovah sent His human son Jesus at his baptism
Jehovah loved Israel with a passion usually reserved for firstborn sons and treasured wives. His unique love for His chosen people Israel melded the exquisite love of a Husband for a wife with the unique love a father has for a firstborn son. The Hebrew Scriptures abound with expressions of Jehovah's love for His inheritance Israel and with His mighty acts in their behalf.
Ezekiel beautifully describes the tempestuous love between Israel and Jehovah in synopsis in Chapter 16: from birth via a brief but beautiful relationship, Israel's adulteries, her dismissal as beloved wife to a final and permanent Atonement and forgiveness for the nation. In a sense she was love of His life and His ornament, decoration and adornment as per Strong's Dictionary second definition.
Though the divorce was final, Israel remained His firstborn son (Exodus 4:22). After the Atonement sacrifice of Jesus the Passover lamb for His firstborn, Jehovah entrusted that congregation to the Christ whose bride they now collectively became.
It is that world of Israel, Jehovah continued to love so fervently and gave His only begotten God/Son* for.
His firstborn son Israel was never to become a fatherless boy. Jehovah never abandoned
the promise He made to Israel to become a Kingdom of Priests and a Holy Nation ‑Exodus
19:6; 1 Peter 2:9.
*John 1:18; NAS, NKJV ref, NWT.
Had Jesus intended to say that Jehovah loved all humans so much that He gave His only-begotten son for them, he would have used the same word the inspired apostle John used in Revelation 12:9 translated to express the whole inhabited earth that Satan/Resister had deceived (Gr. oi·kou·me´nen)
But he did not, because God's main focus was to set the Government in place first, so that the whole inhabited earth, i.e. all the families of the earth, could ultimately benefit, in keeping with His grand and original purpose for them.
Jesus initially came solely to save what was lost and only for the lost sheep of the house of Israel (Luke 19:9; Matthew 19:6). He found a small remnant of repentant Israelites who became his disciples. After being born again at his resurrection*, the Christ appeared to over 500 of them.
* not son of man Jesus, because he remains dead forever, but the heavenly only begotten, the antitype of Isaac, the one actually offered as per John 3:16, stood up again from off the altar of God's will and inherited the anointing and the attendant promises and appointments from Jesus after the lamb of God, had died. —John 1:29.
At Pentecost 33 a remnant of that same nation of Israel were anointed with Holy Spirit as a token of their future adoption at sons into God's heavenly family for their initial role as Kings and Priests in that very Kingdom of the Heavens the Lord Jesus commenced his ministry with.
Israel was now in line for that benevolent heavenly government as a means of permanently restoring God's heavenly governance long denied mankind through the negative Edenic episode.
Israel was and will never be rejected by Jehovah, as clearly indicated here:
(Jeremiah 31:35-37) 35 This is what Jehovah, the Giver of the sun for light by day, the statutes of the moon and the stars for light by night, the One stirring up the sea that its waves may become boisterous, the One whose name is Jehovah of armies, has said: 36 “‘If these regulations could be removed from before me,’ is the utterance of Jehovah, ‘those who are the seed of Israel could likewise cease from proving to be a nation before me always.’”
37 This is what Jehovah has said: “‘If the heavens up above could be measured and the foundations of the earth below could be searched out, I myself also could reject the entire seed of Israel on account of all that they have done,’ is the utterance of Jehovah.”
But wait, there is more. God always makes sure that any biblical truth is established by more than one witness.
The Apostle Paul used that term world specifically to express the world of that orderly arrangement of God Israel in Colossians chapter two.
Allow us to focus but for a moment on verses 13-14 taking particular care to note all the plural personal pronouns, which have been highlighted for the occasion; here from the NWT:
13 Furthermore, though you were dead in your trespasses and in the uncircumcised state of your flesh, [God] made your alive together with him. He kindly forgave us all our trespasses 14 and blotted out the handwritten document against us, which consisted of decrees* and which was in opposition to us; and He has taken it out of the way by nailing it to the torture stake.
But to continue with verses 20-23 to properly identify the world Jesus died for:
If you died together with Christ toward the elementary things of the world, why do you, as if living in the world, further subject yourselves to the decrees*: 21 “Do not handle, nor taste, nor touch,” 22 respecting things that are all destined to destruction by being used up, in accordance with the commands and teachings of men? 23 Those very things are, indeed, possessed of an appearance of wisdom in a self-imposed form of worship and [mock] humility, a severe treatment of the body; but they are of no value in combating the satisfying of the flesh.
*Here the NWT xrefs take the student straight to Ephesians 2:15 and Colossians 2:14 quoted above, where the decrees are intimately connected with the Law given exclusively to Israel. Many Christians know this but do not believe it, because they neither accept that Israel was the trespasser and sinner Jesus died for nor that the world Paul uses here is intimately connected with Israel, their Law and that it is the world of the orderly arrangement of Jehovah's firstborn son Israel who were also temporarily His wife.
What are the elementary things of the world? The Laws given to Israel that were an integral part of their world. 'as if living in the world'? Which world? Why, the world of Israel, which was the only world that contained the elementary things of the Mosaic Law and all of Jehovah's judgements and judicial decisions.
Paul confirms this identification of the elementary things of this world in Galatians 4:1-11
1 ¶ Now I say, That the heir, as long as he is a child, differeth nothing from a servant, though he is lord of all; 2 But is under tutors and governors until the time appointed by the father. 3 Even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under the elements of the world:
4 But when the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, 5 To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons. 6 And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.
7 Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ. 8 ¶ However then, when ye knew not God, ye did service to them which by nature are no gods.
9 But now, after ye have known God, or rather are known by God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements, to which ye desire again to be in bondage? 10 Ye observe days, and months, and times, and years. 11 I am afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you labor in vain. Webster 1833
Note the following confirmation that it was their specific world within which those inhabiting it could trespass laws only they were given:
(2 Corinthians 5:18-19) . . ., 19 namely, that God was by means of Christ reconciling a world to himself, not reckoning to them their trespasses, and he committed the word of the reconciliation to us.
That is the world of John 3:16 and is in perfect concert with Jesus' words in Matt 15:24 and Ca´ia·phas' words in John 11:51.
Note also: The chain of cross-references marked* in John 3:16 NWT are only two or three xrefs away from immortality and incorruption verses, as well as Jesus' expression that the sheep that follow him will never be destroyed, which further emphasizes the incorruptibility and immortality they will attain to in the heavenly realm and ensures that Jesus did not have in mind mankind when he uttered those memorable words of John 3:16, which only have reference to Jehovah's unstinting Love for His firstborn Son Israel (Exodus 4:22).
May Jehovah bless you and give you insightful understanding, as you prayerfully and humbly consider these matters.
(Initially addressed to the JW Elders in NY)
Please continue via the submenu