From the Beginning

A STORY OF "TIME" by Trevor Topsfield

Eternity

That which is eternal is both everlasting and perfect. God is eternal and so is heaven.

The standard of perfection must be maintained, for even the slightest imperfection would compound over an age and change perfection into something which is far from it. In fact, given long enough it will become an unbearable place to be.

When the angels were created it also became necessary to create a place where they could express their volition so they could be with God or away from him.

Therefore: In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Genesis 1:1 (NIV)

For this is what the Lord says— he who created the heavens he is God; he who fashioned and made the earth, he founded it; he did not create it to be empty, but formed it to be inhabited—“I am the Lord there is no other. Isaiah 45:18 (NIV)

With the earth created with its own eco system up and running there was always an alternative to being in heaven

THE ORIGINAL SIN.

Day Star Son of the Morning (an angel) said; “I will ascend to heaven; “I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly on the utmost heights of the sacred mountain. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the “Most High”.  Isaiah 14:13+14 (NIV)

The pride of this angel to consider that he could be like God was the first time that perfection was tainted.

While Isaiah records the sin, Ezekiel explains further:-

“You were the model of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty. You were in Eden the garden of God; every precious stone adorned you: ruby, topaz and emerald, chrysolite, onyx and jasper, sapphire, turquoise and beryl. Your settings and mountings were made of gold; on the day you were created they were prepared.

You were anointed as the guardian cherub, for so I ordained you. You were on the holy mount of God; you walked among the fiery stones. You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created till wickedness was found in you. Ezekiel 11:2-15 (NIV)

  Many other angels decided to follow Day Star. Their pride allowed them to be swayed to follow him in their quest to be like God.

Only God has the personal resources to sustain heaven, none of the creatures God created were designed for such a task. The pride of Day Star and his followers had to be condemned and judged, for if they changed anything it could only be to the detriment of heaven.

The judgment of God upon the angels had to restore the perfection of heaven, so they were immediately exiled to the earth as a temporary fix.

However, it became obvious a permanent solution was required which was achieved with the creation of hell.

“Then he will say to those on his left ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.” Matthew 25:41 (NIV)

Fire refines; therefore the fire of hell will consume all the imperfections of the fallen angels as they will live there forever.

Therefore there are clearly two alternatives: heaven or hell and each have its own life style.

“Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.” Matthew 25:46. (NIV)

There is eternal punishment; or eternal life. One is to perish; the other is to live with God forever. The angels who followed Day Star will perish; but those who stayed loyal to God will retain their eternal life. Eternal life is often referred to as spiritual life, a life that is perfect in quality, everlasting by nature and a prerequisite to live with God.

What happened when the angels first sinned was their perfection was gone, therefore so was their eternal life. Eternal life can only exist where there is perfection, so the eternal life they had enjoyed, died.

Day Star and his angels spent most of their time on earth as they were no longer “in tune” with God. Their lack of perfection took its toll, and the deterioration of the earth set in.

Now the earth was (became*) formless and empty. Genesis 1:2a (NIV)

(A footnote in the NIV Bible says, “or possibly became”.)

With the introduction of sin, God demonstrated one of his attributes that no one had ever seen before. Because righteousness had been violated, God had to restore it. With perfect JUSTICE God sets a punishment to fit the crime; a punishment that will restore the perfection that existed in the beginning.

Clearly the angels sentenced to hell were shocked at the severity of the punishment and so Day Star accused God of being unfair. We know of Day Star’s accusation for his name was changed to Satan, which means “accuser”.

To resolve the issue the earth was restored in six days to something of its original glory (without some of the prehistoric animals) and man was created with free will like the angels; so human history began.

Human history will demonstrate that that God was fair and just to judge Satan and the demons as he did; it will show :-

  1. God’s love for mankind stopped at nothing so that we might be saved, so why then would he have failed in the case of the angels.
  2. If all mankind has to do, is to be positive towards God to be saved, surely the angels would not be condemned if they had remained positive to him also.

3 Imperfections if left unchecked will compound to the extent that they will eventually destroy all around them.

Like the angels, Adam and Eve were created perfect; in the image of God, and having eternal or spiritual life it enabled them to understand the things of God.

The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned.  1 Corinthians 2:14

To make a positive step to continue as they were, man could choose to eat from the Tree of Life.

The other tree situated in the middle of the garden gave Adam and Eve another choice.

The tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil represented Satan’s policies, the things he would do in his quest to be like “The Most High”. When Adam and Eve ate from this tree they accepted Satan’s policies as their way of life. The eternal life they had previously enjoyed could not survive in these new conditions. God had warned Adam and Eve that the day they ate from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, that day they would die, and they did.   Genesis 2:17

Satan had to convince man to eat from his tree to usurp the rulership of the world from man, and then he could demonstrate that perfection was not required, and he was as capable as anyone to rule the earth.

“Good and evil” means anything goes and Satan deceived Eve into eating the fruit from his tree and then she gave some to Adam and he ate some of the fruit too. There is a difference in the sin that caused the fall of man, compared to the sin that caused the sin of the angels.

Day Star sinned when he rejected God; with the idea of making himself like God.  Eve sinned because she was deceived by Satan and ate the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Adam sinned when he ate the fruit which was given to him by Eve.

The difference is:-

  1. When the angels sinned they rejected God as God, which left them in a hopeless situation as God is their only hope.
  2. Man on the other hand sinned without rejecting God; therefore God can overcome this situation as God can still be God to those who will accept his authority.

Even though there is a fundamental difference in the sin that caused the fall of man, both men and fallen angels are condemned. But because God has put forward a way of salvation for mankind; we only have to accept that God is God and have therefore accepted his authority.  This is demonstrated by our faith in Jesus Christ.

Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life. Matthew 25:46 (NIV)

Adam is held responsible for the fall of man because of his own free will and knowing the implications he went astray and ate the fruit that Eve gave him. Eve was deceived by Satan into eating the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.  1Timothy 2:14.

The situation mankind finds himself in after the fall is this:-

  1. No longer perfect and without eternal life we are alienated from God.
  2. Living in a world controlled by Satan and under his policies.
  3. As imperfect beings we cannot produce perfection, therefore we only make things worse as we compound imperfections upon imperfections.

When Adam had lived 130 years, he had a son in his own likeness, in his own image; and he named him Seth. Genesis 5:3(NIV)

Adam’s children were born after his image, not in the image of God and therefore in exactly the same position as their parents.

Consequently, just as the result of one trespass was condemnation for all men, Romans 5:18a

Today we were all born under the same condemnation as was Adam, for today we too are imperfect, and compound our own problems,  Romans 5:12-21

The imperfections of mankind are in three categories:-

  1. The Good and Evil of Satan’s plan.
  2. “Sin” ʹαμαρτια (hamartia) the sin nature or the sinfulness of mankind.
  3. “Sin” ʹαμαρτα(hamartanoo) all wrongdoing is sin according to 1 John 5:17.THE JUDGMENT OF

1 Good and Evil

This is carried out here on earth.

The judgment will be the collapse of the Satanic realm and the inevitable destruction of all that he commands.

“Good and Evil” bring about its own judgment, causes its own havoc. This collapse will prove beyond a shadow of doubt that “Good and Evil” has a very temporary life and its own condemnation.

God only has to wait in heaven until it destroys itself here on earth. If this is the best Satan can do, God has every right to judge him because Satan would destroy everything.

Today we are witnessing thousands of years of policies that are simply not good enough. At every level of life there is a lack of confidence as the collapse of Satan’s world is becoming more and more obvious.

From a personal point of view there is the constant threat to life as the evil side of many people goes unchecked and terrible crimes are committed to innocent people all over the world.

The world as a whole appears to be no better as there are many countries on the verge of bankruptcy. The world will clearly not last forever. We are witnessing the futile attempt of Satan and his demons to prove they can be like the “Most High”. What we are experiencing on earth proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that had imperfections been allowed in heaven, the same thing would happen there.

2  THE JUDGMENT OF SIN; a noun. (ʹαμαρτια)

There are two Greek words that are commonly translated sin; one is a noun, the other is a verb.

The first one I will explain it the noun and it is the name of the sinfulness we are, and it refers to fact that we are imperfect. When we were born and before we took our first breath the sinfulness of our fathers was passed on to us and we started out sinfulness, and the Greek word for it is ʹαμαρτια (hamartia)

When Adam and Eve ate the fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil; on that day they died as God had warned them. The perfection they were created was destroyed which cause the life that was part of their image of God to die.

This sin (ʹαμαρτια) is the “sin” that is the wages of death. So ʹαμαρτια is the “sin” that Jesus Christ died for on the cross so that we might have the righteousness of God.

We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the Lord laid on him the iniquity of all. (NIV)

“Going astray” and “turning each to his own way” was laid on Christ, and then he became sinful because of us, with our sinfulness judged we might have the righteousness of God.

By oppression and judgment he was taken away. And who can speak of his descendants? For he was cut off from the land of the living; for the transgression of my people he was stricken. Isaiah 53:8

Yes! Jesus was oppressed and afflicted for the “rebellion”, the “going astray”, the “turning to their own way” of the people of Isaiah’s day and all mankind whether they lived before or after this particular time.

God made him who had no sin (ʹαμαρτια) to be sin (άμαρτια) for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

While we are not responsible for our sinfulness; However man is responsible for what he does and because we constantly “miss the mark” of God’s perfection we realise we have a sinful nature, (ʹαμαρτια) therefore we really should do something about it.

So everyone’s sinfulness will never cause any more trouble ever again and is no threat to the eternal value of heaven as Jesus was judged for them all.

Good and evil of Satan plan will be sorted out in time on earth. It is its own judgment and will never be a worry to the perfection of God’s creation once his plan has proven to fail.

Then there is the sinfulness of us all; that was judged while Jesus hung on the cross, so it will never do the righteousness of God’s creation any harm.

But there is still mankind sins to be taken care of .

3 THE JUDGMENT OF “SIN, a verb. (ʹαμαρτα)

Both believers and unbelievers commit sins, these sins are a verb and when we commit them they demonstrate we the sinfulness (ʹαμαρτια) .

These sins (ʹαμαρτα) and the effect they would have on the perfection of heaven means they cannot continue and must destroyed.

Every sin (άμαρτανω) that anyone commits from their sinfulness (άμαρτια) will have to be judged as not one can escape. If this were to happen the damage they would cause as it compounded and multiplied over time would eventually mean the destruction of everything.

Therefore all sins (άμαρτανω) have to dealt with.

Both the believer and unbeliever will be judged, the believers judgment is recorded In 1 Corinthians 3:10-14. When our time on earth is over, there will be a judgment in heaven where fire will test all we have done while on the earth.

Our eternal reward depends on our gold, silver and costly stones, but the wood, hay and straw (sins committed on earth) will be destroyed.

The unbeliever; because he has done nothing about his sinfulness cannot go to heaven and therefore is in a terrible situation.

But for the believer; he will go to heaven as he has been given God’s righteousness and it will not have any detrimental effect on its perfection. But he cannot take anything that is not perfect when he goes there, so all the imperfect deeds he did throughout his life have to be destroyed.

So there is a judgment in heaven for the believers;

By the grace God has given me. I laid a foundation as an expert builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should be careful how he builds. For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. If any man builds on his foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, his work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each man’s work. If what he has built survives, he will receive a reward. If it is burned up, he will suffer loss; he himself will be saved, but only as one escaping through the flames 1Corrinthians 3:10-15.

While every believer will be saved; this judgment makes sure none of them will take anything with him to heaven that was not done through the filling of the Holy Spirit.

But for the unbelievers; they are in a terrible situation. They cannot go to heaven because they have done nothing about their sinfulness (ʹαμαρτια), even though it has been judged.

Because they have rejected God’s authority and a lack of righteousness by not believing in Jesus they will be condemned to hell because of the sins (άμαρτανω) they committed throughout their lifetime.

Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. Earth and sky fled from his presence, and there was no place for them. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and the books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books. The sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them, and each person was judged according to what he had done. Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death. If anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire. Revelation 20:11-15 (NIV)

Trevor Topsfield

Scripture taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION ®

Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved.

 

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