Vacation trip and the divine court case
Aug 11, 2015
We are back from our vacation. As usual, it turned out to be more of a working vacation, but now and then our heavenly Father did give us some time off to be tourists.
Ten of us met at cabins in Estes Park, Colorado to enjoy the scenery and the thin air at 7500 feet above sea level. We saw elk grazing a short distance away, and one elk family of eleven walked past our cabin toward town one evening. They were probably intending to have a night on the town. The chipmunks were fat, and the hummingbirds were abundant enough for a full choir.
Darla saw no bears, though she diligently sought for them on her walks into the hills. No one else could keep up with her, as we could hardly walk between cabins without being winded in the thin air. So she worshipped the Creator of all by herself in the mountains in the midst of wild flowers and deer fawns.
One day we drove up the mountain to the tundra about 12,200 feet above sea level. From there we could look across the valleys at the snow from our position above the tree line. We also spent a few afternoons in downtown Estes Park picking up some tourist items from the shops. I bought some Rooibos [“roy-bus”] tea that was imported from South Africa. It has been my favorite tea since 2008 when I was introduced to it on my trip to South Africa. It has no caffeine and is full of minerals. It is very good for health. It is hard to find in America, but I now am now well stocked for the next year.
The most important aspect of the trip, however, was the good fellowship with friends. Most of our cabin time was spent in prayer and discernment, which, of course, was our favorite pastime, since the things of God and His Kingdom were never far from our thoughts and our focus.
On the way to Estes Park, I read the book by Dr. Henderson called Operating in the Courts of Heaven.
He had held meetings here in the Minneapolis area the end of February earlier this year, and some of our local group had heard him speak. However, Darla and I missed hearing him, because we had already flown to New Zealand for meetings of our own. But some had bought his book, and this was shared with me as we began driving to Colorado.
Because we rode with friends, I did not have to drive, and this freed me to read the book. I soon found that the information in this book was the impetus for some important work in the divine court that the group was to do in Colorado. That is how our “vacation” turned into a working vacation.
As many of you know, I have been talking about the divine court at least as far back as the start of the Jubilee prayer campaign in November of 1993. Until recently, I did not know that God had been revealing this to others as well. Dr. Henderson has a clear grasp of the distinction between classic spiritual warfare on spiritual battlefield and the various courts of heaven. I learned this in 1993 when our spiritual warfare against Babylon turned out to be a court battle, rather than the type of warfare I had experienced in the 1980’s.
Likewise, Henderson explains the difference between the divine court (Daniel 7:10) and the throne of grace (Hebrews 4:16), something that we saw clearly in 2001. The throne of grace is accessible to everyone in personal prayer for needs and requests. The divine court is the venue for legal matters and records in the “books” of heaven (Exodus 32:32; Daniel 7:10; Malachi 3:16; Revelation 20:12, 15).
Books were written from the beginning for everyone and every tribe and nation and religion to establish the blueprint of history and everyone’s calling. Not everyone actually achieves their calling as written in their “book,” says Dr. Henderson, for most people fail to come to their full potential. In my view, their failure is also written in the book, and that in such cases their success will come after the Great White Throne judgment. Perhaps our difference of opinion is rooted in the fact that I do not see death as a divine deadline but as a legal change in earth’s history.
The Purpose of the Arrest Warrant
Our current life time is the most opportune time for achieving our full potential that comes only by faith in Christ and in developing a mature relationship with Him. Since Adam, a warrant has been issued for the arrest of all sinners, but that warrant has not been enforced in order to give men time to turn themselves in to the court, confess their sin in agreement with the law (i.e., “repent”), and to find forgiveness through the blood of Jesus.
Since most people have not done this throughout history, the Great White Throne judgment is the time when the warrant is enforced, and all men are summoned from their graves to answer for their deeds done in their life time on earth. At that point, every knee will bow and every tongue will confess their allegiance to Christ (Isaiah 45:23, 24). Even so, they will have to learn the ways of God (Isaiah 26:9) and to grow into spiritual maturity. This will take time, and so they will be “sold” (Exodus 22:3) to those who can teach them by example—those who are given the authority to “reign upon the earth” (Revelation 5:10).
The purpose of the summons to the court (via the resurrection) is to give all creation a proper understanding of who Christ is. Most people either do not hear of Him during their life time, or they were given an improper introduction that turned them away from Christ. The Great White Throne is designed to do away with all misperceptions of His character and work on the cross. When this event takes place, there will be no more unbelievers, not because they were forced to bow their knees, but as Revelation 15:4 says, “Who will not fear, O Lord, and glorify Thy name? For all the nations will come and worship before Thee, for Thy righteous acts have been revealed.”
In other words, at that time it will be self-evident to all of creation that He is the one to “fear,” to “glorify,” and to “worship.” Bowing before Him will be a “no-brainer,” as they say. Yet the purpose of God is for all to come to spiritual maturity, not simply to have faith in Jesus Christ. That is why there are three feasts, and not just Passover. If Passover (faith in the blood of the Lamb) were sufficient in God’s sight, He would not have instituted Pentecost and Tabernacles.
Dr. Henderson comes very close to the truth of the Reconciliation of All Things, telling us that Jesus died to save everyone that has ever lived. He also understands that we must be reconciled to God as a response, because all things are established by the double witness—in this case, heaven and earth. He says further that as intercessors, we are called to bring into the earth all that Christ accomplished on the cross.
I wholeheartedly agree with this. The difference is that He, like so many, believes that death is the divine deadline, and since most people do not come to Christ before their death, it is evident that our success rate is quite low. Our difference of opinion is actually based on our different understandings of the Old and New Covenants. The Old Covenant is man’s vow to God (Exodus 19:8); the New Covenant is God’s vow to man (Deut. 29:12, 13).
If salvation is based on the Old Covenant, then no one can be saved. Even those with good intentions cannot fulfill their vow when they say, “I have decided to follow Jesus.” It is self-evident that even the best of Christians remain imperfect. On the other hand, the New Covenant is based on the promises of God, not upon the promises of men. He has promised to save the whole earth (Genesis 9) and to use Abraham’s seed to bless all families of the earth (Genesis 12:3). Even Moses heard the oath of God to make all men His people and to be their God (Deuteronomy 29:10-15). And obviously, the New Testament speaks often of this.
Galatians 4:28 says that Isaac, the son of Sarah (the New Covenant), was the pattern for those who are “children of promise.” Paul contrasts Isaac with Ishmael who represents allegorically the children of the Old Covenant, who are in bondage while trying to fulfill their own promise to obey God.
The point is that in the end, if God is unable to fulfill His oath (on account of men’s opposition), then He should not have made an oath that He could not keep. If God’s integrity in this matter depends upon men’s ability to bring all of Christ’s work on the cross into the earth by the time men die, then God’s success rate will be very small. In fact, if this were the case, then God would have at least a 98% failure rate, and this would make Him a sinner. The Hebrew word for “sin” is khawtaw, which literally means to fail to hit the mark, to fail to achieve a goal. Romans 3:23 pictures sin as falling short of the glory of God (the bullseye).
But it is self-evident that God cannot fail. Therefore, He will fulfill His promises and achieve all of His goals. He will not lose 98% of humanity, because He is able to fulfill His promises, whether men believe it or not.
I found it most interesting that Dr. Henderson wrote about God’s good intentions but that in the end God would have to fail because too few intercessors knew how to bear witness to Christ’s work on the cross. To me, it is unjust that God would leave such an important work in the hands of men with a deadline that could not possibly be met.
For this reason, we were called to a high mountain and shown the kingdoms of this world and the sea of humanity. We were called to present the case for the Restoration of All Creation in the divine court, presenting the testimony of Noah, Abraham, Moses, David, Isaiah, Luke, John, and Paul. Since all of those writers lived in the past, we used their writings as Affidavits to present their testimony. Their testimonies were true, because they had read the books in the courts of heaven and knew God’s intent and purpose for creation. We simply presented their case and agreed with them, asking the Judge to give us a favorable ruling in this matter.
We know that we won our case, and, as Dr. Henderson said so often, the purpose of going to court is to present the evidence properly so that God can legally fulfill His passion to do His will in the earth. It is His passion to save all mankind, as we read in 2 Peter 3:9,
9 The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing [boulomi, “willing, intending, planning”] for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.
The promise of God, says Peter, is bound up in His intent “for all to come to repentance.” This is more than a wish. It is a Statement of Intent that defines the Promise of God insofar as the divine plan is concerned. Paul used the same Greek word in Romans 9:19, saying, “who can resist His will?” (boulema, "plan, intention"). This is the passage about the sovereignty of God, where Esau and Pharaoh stand as examples of God’s sovereign will. As I have explained elsewhere, men everywhere resist God’s will (thelema), but no one can resist God’s plan (boulema). His will is expressed in His law (Romans 2:18), which men break all the time, but neither Esau nor Pharaoh were able to resist the divine Plan (boulema).
The story of the Old Covenant is how all have sinned by breaking God’s law. The story of the New Covenant is how God cannot fail to keep His promise to be “the Savior of all men” (1 Timothy 4:10). When Christ was lifted up on the cross, He ratified the divine plan to draw [helkuo, “drag”] all men to Himself (John 12:32).
Dr. Henderson tells us that in the divine court the devil (“accuser”) is the Prosecutor accusing us before God. He says that the devil brings up all of our sins and makes the claim that we cannot be saved on the grounds that God’s holiness prevents Him from doing this. He says we should agree with God rather than with the devil. He says that the blood of Jesus paid for the sin of the world, so we should not bear witness to the devil in his accusation.
I agree fully. Let us stop agreeing that God’s holiness prevents Him from saving all men. In fact, it is God’s holiness that demands that He keeps His Promise! It is God’s holiness that requires God to arrest all of humanity, bring them before the Great White Throne, reveal His righteous character, and cause them to repent so that they can be saved.
In our court case, we presented the holiness of God as part of our testimony, but we did not agree with the accuser of the brethren. We found it ironic that both the prosecution and the defense would present the holiness of God as evidence in the divine court! Unfortunately, most Christians find themselves in agreement with the devil on this point of law. They need a greater revelation of the plan (boulema) of God.
When I get the notes from our court case, I will share the transcript of the proceedings.
Dr. Stephen Jones