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God's Will and Plan

Feb 18, 2010

I have shown the failure of all flesh to fulfill the requirements of God, whereby they might obtain the Birthright, the Promise of God, the glorified body, or "salvation" in general.

It should also be clear that this failure itself was built into the divine plan. Failure did not take God by surprise. He fully intended that this should happen, in order that we might know this as a tried-and-tested truth established by real experience.

The Old Covenant was given to Israel for the same reason. It put the responsibility upon the people to achieve righteousness and find salvation by diligent obedience. Obviously, this did not work, for we know that they broke that Covenant (Heb. 8:9). But because this too was part of the divine plan, God made provision from the beginning for a New Covenant, referenced by Moses but clearly prophesied by Jeremiah and fulfilled in Christ.

There will be no success apart from the New Covenant, which puts the responsibility upon God to do the work in us by the Holy Spirit.

The sovereignty of God in this matter is shown in countless ways, but since we have been discussing the story of the 12 spies in Numbers 13 and 14, let us see how plain it is that God was not taken by surprise when the people failed to enter the land under Moses.

I showed in Secrets of Time how Israel left Egypt in the Spring of the year 2448 (years from Adam). The following Spring (the year 2449) they erected the Tabernacle and dedicated it just in time for their first Passover celebration in the wilderness (Num. 9:1-3). They also kept a second Passover a month later (9:11). Then they began to journey toward the land of Canaan and pitched camp at Kadesh-barnea on the southern border of Canaan.

The 12 spies were sent into the land for 40 days, and "the time was the time of the first-ripe grapes" (Num. 13:20). Grapes ripened in September. September was the month of Rosh Hoshana, their New Year's Day (insofar as the Sabbath years and Jubilees were calculated). Thus, they were just entering their year 2450 by their calendar.

This was their 50th Jubilee from Adam. (49 x 50 = 2450). The Jubilee was the day of returning to one's lost inheritance (Lev. 25:10). So God brought Israel to the border of their Promised Land at that particular time, so that they could return to the land of their inheritance precisely ON TIME.

However, 10 of the 12 spies gave an evil report, and the people believed them and refused to keep that day as a Jubilee. They did not "blow the trumpet" (give their consent with "jubilation") to return to their inheritance. Hence, they turned it into a day of mourning and fasting, known subsequently as the Day of Atonement.

One might think that God was taken by surprise here. He certainly SEEMED to be angry with Israel and even threatened to disinherit them. However, God had hidden something from them which, if they had known about it, would have clarified the situation.

The fact is that God had brought judgment upon the Canaanites, but Canaan's time for judgment was not due for another 38 years.

Canaan had come under Noah's curse in the year 1660, three years after the flood when Noah became drunk. We read this story in Genesis 9. The flood began in the year 1656 and lasted a whole year (1657). Then they emerged from the ark, and Noah planted a vineyard. Three years later it came time to harvest grapes, and Noah got drunk (Gen. 9:21).

Verse 22 says only that "Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father." The book of Jasher adds that Ham stole Noah's garments which had been passed down to him from Adam (Gen. 3:21), and that these garments went to Canaan, and to his son Cush, and finally to his son, Nimrod, from whom Esau stole them later.

The point to be made here is that Noah laid a curse upon Canaan in Gen. 9:25, probably for denying all knowledge of the theft of Adam's garments. This put Canaan and his descendants on Cursed Time (multiples of 414). That is, Canaan was sentenced by the curse of Noah, then was given a Grace Period in which to repent before the sentence was actually carried out.

Canaan was given 2 x 414 years of Grace. This 828-year period extended from the year 1660 to 2488. The year 2488, then, was the year that Canaan's Grace Period ended, and it came time to bring judgment upon Canaan. It happened to be the year that the Israelites brought judgment upon Canaan under Joshua's leadership.

It was also 38 years after the 12 spies gave their report. In other words, if Israel had actually entered Canaan at their own appointed time (the 50th Jubilee), they would have brought judgment upon the Canaanites 38 years too soon! So while it was God's WILL that Israel enter the land, it was God's PLAN that they would fail to enter the land at that time and would postpone it until Canaan's Grace Period had ended.

This shows how God's WILL can be violated, but no one can resist the overall PLAN. Even when God's Will is resisted, we know that even that very resistance has been built into the Plan.

I might add another insight into this story, since I seldom find opportunity to include the finer details. . .

If Israel had not run from God at Sinai; if Israel had drawn near to God as Moses urged them to do in Ex. 20:18-21; then the people would have fulfilled Pentecost at that time. They would have received the baptism of the Holy Spirit AS IN ACTS 2. It was God's will that they receive the Holy Spirit, but it was not His Plan. The Plan called for a delay, in order to allow the flesh to fail.

But IF Israel had received the Holy Spirit, they would also have been given the New Covenant. And then when it came time to enter the Promised Land, they might have inherited the land in a very different manner. They would have been given the Great Commission, by which they might have conquered Canaan by the Sword of the Spirit.

Israel would have blown the trumpet of the Jubilee on the 10th day of the 7th month. Then they would have entered the land on the 15th day, the beginning of the feast of Tabernacles. They would have entered the land as manifested Sons of God.

If this had taken place, the Canaanites would have repented at seeing the whole House of Israel radiant with the glory of God. Their repentance would have meant that 38 years later, when their Grace Period ended, their sentence would have been cancelled. Their penalty would have been laid at the cross like all other sinners who repent.

However, the Divine Plan included giving the flesh the first opportunity to succeed, so that we would understand that the flesh will always fail. It was the Will of God to fill the whole earth with His glory (Num. 14:21), and His Will shall always be fulfilled--but not without resistance. This resistance slows down the process and extends the Time that it takes to fulfill His Will.

His Will plus Time equals the PLAN. (W + T = P)

Hence, to know the Plan, one must understand Time, its purpose, and its relation to the Will of God. Without understanding Timing, one can never comprehend the Plan of God. God created Time for a purpose and subjected mankind to its limitations in order to allow all flesh to prove itself unworthy. Those who refuse to recognize the value and purpose of Time usually end up as the Israelites in Numbers 14 who attempted to receive the Promise immediately.

The key revelation is to see that the divine purpose of Time is to let the flesh prove itself to be incapable of fulfilling the responsibility of the Birthright. When all flesh has fulfilled its allotment of Time, then the time has arrived for the overcomers to be manifested as the sons of God.

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Category: Teachings

Dr. Stephen Jones

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