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PART TEN - THE COMMENTARY CONCERNING THE "BOOK OF MALACHI," AND THE FUTURE OF GOD'S HEBREW PEOPLE

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The Apostle Peter's Confession And The Millennial

[ "Ekklesia ] Congregation."

And: The Proof Of CHRIST'S Deity . . . References: { Matthew 16:13-20; - Mark 827-30; And - Luke 9:18-21 }.

( 1 ). Commentary ... All the Synoptics which take in the first three books of the New Testament record the same confession by Peter of the identity of CHRIST.

( 2 ). Thus, the book of Matthew, that is truthfully looked upon as the teaching of the Kingdom Gospel, gives the further details of the keys of the Millennial Kingdom of Heaven and its "Church [ i.e., Temple" and Millennial Congregation ] which MESSIAH will build in relation to His Millennial Kingdom Reign. Peter's confession was called forth by CHRIST'S Own question: The LORD asked . . .

( 3 ). Scripture: He asked His disciples, saying, "Whom do men say that I the SON of man am, { Matthew 16:13 }?"

( 4 ). And they answered, that some speculated that JESUS was the 'prophet John the Baptist' who had come back to life, or 'Elijah, or Jeremiah', or one of the other Old Testament prophets whom had risen back from the dead.

( 5 ). Then JESUS directed the Question to the disciples ... "But who do you say that I am?" Peter answered for all of them when he said . . .

( 6 ). "You are 'the [ MESSIAH' ], 'the SON of the living GOD.' JESUS declared that Peter did not learn this fact from any human source but it was revealed to him by GOD the FATHER in Heaven. And the same-thing can be said of { Titis 2:13 }!

( 7 ). Here we have what is perhaps the clearest claim of JESUS Himself to His MESSIAH-SHIP and His unique relation as 'the SON OF GOD [ and or GOD the SON' ].

( 8 ). CHRIST not only claimed it for Himself, but declared that GOD THE FATHER was the originator of this revelation.

( 9 ). People who have not had this truth revealed to them by the FATHER may deny His title as the ANOINTED One or as the SON OF GOD, but they cannot deny that JESUS claimed this for Himself.

( 10 ). There follows after this a statement By the LORD JESUS which is one of the most misunderstood of all His teachings . . .

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( 11 ). { V. 18 } Scripture: "And I say also unto you, That you are Peter, and upon THIS ROCK I will build My Church; and the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it.

( 12 ). { V. 19 }: And I will give unto you the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven; and whatsoever you shall bind on earth shall be bound in Heaven: and whatsoever you shall loose on earth shall be loosed in Heaven, { Matthew 16:18-19 }."

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( 13 ). The above { Vs. 18-19 } paraphrased below in commentary form ...

( 14 ). { 18 }: "And I say also unto you, That you are Peter, and upon THIS 'ROCK [ i.e., Myself' ] I will build 'My [ Millennial Kingdom' ]: 'Church [ i.e., Ekklesia, meaning: Messianic Assembly, Multitude, or Congregation' ]; and the gates of 'Hell [ Hades, death' ] 'shall not [ or ever will' ] prevail against it.

( 15 ). { 19 }: And 'I will give unto 'you [ Peter' ] the keys of 'the [ Millennial ] Kingdom [ Messianic Gospel ] of Heaven' [ 'to teach after you 12 apostles are sitting on your thrones during My Millennial reign' ]; and whatsoever you shall bind on earth shall be bound in Heaven: and whatsoever you shall loose on earth shall be loosed in Heaven, { Matthew 16:18-19 }."

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( 16 ) Commentary . . . The old Roman denomination uses this above passage as proof of the Papacy: they teach that their own Roman Catholic Denomination is built upon Peter with the power to forgive and to bind sin. And, that their priest have the power to remit - i.e., forgive a person of their sins!

( 17 ). Protestants have borrowed much of Rome's false ideas and also teach some of their doctrine. Some of them have used all manner of interpretations to try to deny the claims of Rome.

( 18 ). Some Protestants ARGUE that Peter's name means a little rock or pebble, but the rock upon which the BODY OF CHRIST is to be built actually means bedrock foundation, and that foundation rock is not Peter but was Peter's confession.

( 19 ). Others argue that Peter had no more authority to forgive sin than the humblest Believer and that all that JESUS meant to say was that when we ourselves preach the Gospel we are using the keys to the kingdom, so that we can say when a man believes his sins are forgiven, and when he doesn't they are retained.

( 20 ). And Rome further uses the statement about the gates of Hell to claim infallibility for their denomination and ... that the devil will never be able to prevail by bringing false doctrine into their Denomination.

( 21 ). Therefore, of course both Catholics and Protestants alike agree on one point, and that is - that the Church of which CHRIST spoke of in the above texts, is our present BODY OF CHRIST of this present Age. Naturally, this present Dispensation of Grace was not what Israel's MESSIAH was talking about at all!!! "Yes, I am being very dogmatic here!

( 22 ). If we could only stop for a moment and put Scriptures in perspective we would be saved from all of the controversy and confusion.

( 23 ). The first fact is, Paul's plain teaching that the Church [ i.e., "ONE NEW MAN' - BODY OF CHRIST" ] of which he was the revelator and minister was kept a secret truth hidden in GOD and never before revealed to the sons of man in past generations before it was revealed to the Apostle Paul himself, { Ephesians 3:3-9; - & - 5:32. Read also 2:15- 16 }.

( 24 ). The other fact is that the "Church [ i.e., Kingdom Congregation" ] of which JESUS spoke of was to become the long promised - future earthly Dispensation of the Messianic Millennial Kingdom of the Heavens.

( 25 ). That future Dispensation was predicted by all of the Old Testament prophets, which will be established here on earth when MESSIAH returns as the KING OF KINGS.

( 26 ). To make the Kingdom 'Church [ Ekklesia' Assembly, - Congregation to be ] identical with the BODY OF CHRIST of our present Dispensation of Grace, we must either say that the Apostle Paul who taught by the authority of CHRIST Himself was completely mistaken about the present BODY OF CHRIST being a previously unrevealed secret . . ., read again { Ephesians 3:9 }.

( 27 ). Or we must say that the term "Kingdom of Heaven," has suddenly taken on an entirely different meaning from the way it has been used previously in Matthew's Gospel.

( 28 ). But, if we let Scripture speak for itself and recognize that MESSIAH is going to have a "great Messianic Congregation [ or Christian Assembly . . . GREEK Ekklesia" ] in the Millennial Kingdom, read { Hebrews 2:12 } which is quoted from { Psalm 22:22 }, the meaning becomes perfectly clear.

( 29 ). CHRIST told Peter and the other Eleven Apostles that they would sit on 12 thrones as judges in that earthly Kingdom - judging the Twelve Tribes of Israel, { Matthew 19:28 }.

( 30 ). It makes little sense to argue that a judge sitting upon a throne exercising his authority has no more authority than the humblest Saint.

( 31 ). Why do we have to resort to an interpretation which completely nullifies the words of CHRIST to try to answer the claims of Rome?

( 32 ). Rome is correct in delegating authority to Peter concerning the Gospel of the Kingdom, but wrong in making the future Millennial Congregation to be a Church in this present Grace Age today.

( 33 ). Rome is wrong in limiting this authority to Peter, for CHRIST gave this same authority to all twelve of the Apostles, for all of them are to sit as judges on 12 thrones right here on this earth in that future Kingdom one thousand year Dispensation, { John 20:23 }. "Read also { Mark 2:7 }. . . . It is only GOD Himself that can really forgive sins."

( 34 ). Many people have the mistaken idea that an "Ekklesia" Greek - Christian Congregation is limited only to the BODY OF CHRIST in this present Age of Grace, and absolutely has nothing to do with Israel.

( 35 ). Naturally this is true concerning the BODY OF CHRIST during this Dispensation! "But the word Ekklesia appears over 40 times in the LXX [ the Greek translation of the Old Testament" ].

( 36 ). There was definitely a "Believing Congregation or Ekklesia" during the time before CHRIST was born. And before the death of CHRIST there was another "Ekklesia Congregation of Believing Jews in which many of them lived on into this Grace Dispensation." The reader should again study CHRIST'S instructions in { Matthew 18:17 }

( 37 ). The Believing Congregations "BEFORE our own Dispensation of Grace," "was strictly one hundred percent Jewish because the BODY OF CHRIST was not in the former Dispensations before the Apostle Paul came on the seen at a later time, and at the beginning of this Grace Dispensation!"

( 38 ). The Apostle Paul - the Apostle for the Gentiles had not been as yet saved. Read { Acts Ch. nine }, and after being saved and called forth by the risen CHRIST - { Ephesians 3:1-9 } tells us the truth of the matter.

( 39 ). As we have said . . . "Before this present Grace Dispensation - that the previous Ekklesia was entirely Jewish and was the nucleus of the Kingdom Congregation, [ i.e., the beginning of the Kingdom Congregation but set aside because of unbelief at that time, and will become a whole Congregation of Kingdom Believers in completeness after MESSIAH'S Second Advent." ]

( 40 ). The BODY OF CHRIST called the Church by most folks in our Dispensation of Grace is a "ONE NEW MAN" A JOINT - BODY that were saved out from the Jews and the heathen, where all such nationalistic distinctions have disappeared. We were [ past tense ] lost Gentiles, Heathen, but now: we are the saved "CHILDREN of ALMIGHTY GOD THE FATHER!" Read again concerning the three types of people on this earth, { 1 - Corinthians 10: 32 }

( 41 ). As we have before stated else-where, GOD'S born again Children in the BODY OF CHRIST are no longer counted as Jews or Gentiles except by their races only.

( 42 ). We today after becoming GOD'S Children, are the "ONE NEW MAN . . . The BODY OF CHRIST." And, "CHRIST is the HEAD of this BODY." And as the Head, He is the instigator of the building up of the BODY OF CHRIST whom we are!

( 43 ). We are absolutely not Jews or Gentiles in any way! Our Denomination is the BODY OF CHRIST! { Ephesians 1:22-23; - 2:15-16; - 4:4, 12, 13; - & - Romans 12:4-5 }. Also . . .

( 44 ). There is a misunderstanding about the meaning of "The gates of Hell not prevailing against the future Millennial Congregation. Hell, here is referred to from the Greek word "Hades", which is presently the Abode of the wicked dead.

( 45 ). Hades is in the unseen world, it is down inside and at the interior of this world. It is at times translated as "grave."

( 46 ). Hell at the end of the Millennial reign of MESSIAH will be cast into the unknown place called the "LAKE OF FIRE." The lake of fire has been prepared for the Devil and his wicked angels, { Jude Vs. 6-7 }. [ "Read our message concerning HELL," called "The Prison Of No Return." ]

( 47 ). CHRIST stated that many of His followers, who were His members of His Kingdom Congregation, would suffer martyrdom. And, what He is saying here in { Matthew 16:18 } . . . is that the gates of death will not prevail against His Church i.e., [ saved Millennial 'Ekklesia' - "Congregation - ASSEMBLY, Greek" ] during His Kingdom Dispensation age.

( 48 ). For He will conquer death and bring all of these martyred Saints back to life, and at His Second Advent they will take part in His Millennial "Church" - i.e., His Millennial Kingdom . . . "Greek" . . . "Congregation or Assembly!" And this will include the Tribulation martyrs.

( 49 ). It is altogether possible that CHRIST spoke these words in Aramaic and not in the Greek, and if so, there is no possibility of making the distinction between Petros, a little stone, and Petra, a foundation stone, in the Aramaic language.

( 50 ). In every Dispensation GOD has given special authority to certain men. Surely Moses and Aaron, David and Paul were men of special authority.

( 51 ). Why take the authority away from Peter in the future government of the Messianic Kingdom? If we understand this passage correctly, it refers to the yet future Millennial 'Church ...' "i.e., Congregation", the program of which was interrupted and temporarily set aside because of Israel's rejection of CHRIST and their choice of Caesar rather than JESUS as their King.

( 52 ). It has no reference to the "Church" i.e., the "ONE NEW MAN - BODY OF CHRIST" of this present Dispensation, of which Paul is the master-builder { 1- Corinthians 3:10 }.

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( 53 ). To try to make the Kingdom of Heaven the same thing as the BODY OF CHRIST of this Dispensation of Grace is to completely and positively distort the Scriptures.

( 54 ). John the Baptist came as the messenger before the LORD in the same sense that CHRIST came the first time as the Messenger of the Covenant . . ., and we repeat the next two verses . . .

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( 55 ). { V. 8 } Scripture: "Now I say that JESUS CHRIST was a minister of the 'circumcision [ Jews' ] for the truth of GOD, to confirm the 'promises [ of the Millennial Kingdom and other Covenants' ] made unto the 'fathers [ of Israel' ] . . .

( 56 ). { V. 9 }: And that the Gentiles might glorify GOD for His mercy; as it is written, For this cause I will confess to you among the [ 'heathenistic ] Gentiles', and sing unto Your Name, { Romans 15:8- 9 }."

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( 57 ). Commentary . . . GOD'S mercy to the Gentiles extended from the very beginning of this BODY OF CHRIST Grace Age. . . .

( 58 ). And GOD gave to Paul the glorious message of the FATHER'S Grace in a crucified Saviour to all who would believe and receive so great salvation.

( 59 ). But before the Cross, CHRIST was a Minister to Israel. He told the little Gentile woman who came to ask a favor of Him that He had come to no other people other than to the house of Israel.

( 60 ). And why did the LORD MESSIAH come to Israel? to confirm the Covenants about a glorious everlasting Kingdom in which the will of GOD would be done on earth even as it was done in Heaven - thus, by sitting up the "Earthly Kingdom of . . ., or from, Heaven."

( 61 ). This was what JESUS Himself prayed for, and this is the prayer He taught His disciples to pray as the model prayer given in { Matthew Ch. 6 }.

( 62 ). When Christians pray this prayer, they are actually praying for the Second Coming of the MESSIAH at the end of the Tribulation Period, because the will of GOD will never be done on earth as it is in Heaven until MESSIAH returns literally and stands upon the Mount of Olives as portrayed in { Zechariah 14:4 }. All This is a theological certainty and you can count on it.

( 63 ). But, we read that CHRIST came to confirm the Covenants that JEHOVAH made with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob concerning the land of Israel and a 'future' glorious Kingdom of nations here on this earth.

( 64 ). What does this mean - He "The LORD JESUS came to confirm the Covenants?" A covenant is simply a contract - JEHOVAH displayed to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob . . .

( 65 ). If you will do such and such, then I have the power to do such and such, and as a result of you doing your part of the agreement then I will do My part and the result will be a glorious thousand year Kingdom of peace and plenty for you right here on this earth.

( 66 ). We read in Isaiah and the other prophetic utterances throughout our Bible, of the many other aspects if this future Kingdom of Heaven Dispensation. And all of this, will be the fulfillment of these prophecies that will be completed on this very earth!

( 67 ). But what does confirm mean? How did CHRIST JESUS come to confirm these - contracts? I read in my College Dictionary that confirm means: "To make firm or firmer establish ...; strengthen ..., or to render valid by formal assent." ( end quote ).

( 68 ). So when the LORD JESUS came to Israel He informed the party of the second part that the party of the first part had sent Him to strengthen the Covenants and to assure the Jews that these contracts were still in force even after all these hundreds of years.

( 69 ). If they would accept Him as their MESSIAH, the One Who could validate these contracts, He would fulfill GOD'S promises made back there in the beginning with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

( 70 ). CHRIST JESUS made Israel a firm and legal offer, but it takes two parties to put a contract in force. You can sign contracts all day, in fact you can sign a thousand contracts, but unless another party agrees to the terms by putting his name on the contract, you do not have a legal contract. The offer is legal, but the contract itself is not legal because you do not have two parties agreeing to the terms.

( 71 ). GOD knew that Israel would not receive JESUS CHRIST as the promised MESSIAH and that CHRIST would go to the Cross for the sins of the world; therefore, a legal proxy was appointed to take Elijah's place, and this proxy was John the Baptist. . . .

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The Book Of Malachi Continued On . . .

PART ELEVEN OF THIS COMMENTARY CONCERNING THE "BOOK OF MALACHI"

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