God’s Plan for Christians
God has had a Plan in place from the very beginning—and not only was the Sacrifice of His Son the vital initial component of the Plan from the beginning, but God has had a Plan in place for those who would be called to accept the Sacrifice of His Son and to conform, transform, their lives in preparation for God’s holy world-ruling Kingdom—which will be initiated at Christ’s return.
The Father instructed His Son: “Sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool” (Psalm 110:1). Note: the Son is greater than the angels, having created them—and all things, visible or invisible (Col. 1:16, Heb. 1:5).
Those now called will be heirs of salvation (Col. 1:13-19, Heb. 1:10-14, Rev. 4:11).
As the Creator—Christ’s life is of greater value than the sum-total of all creation; Therefore He—and He alone—could atone for the sins of all human kind in one sacrifice (John 1:3, Col. 1:16-17). He is the only way to God (Acts 4:12, Heb 10:10).
Yet there is even more, if that were possible, that Christ has provided for us. What does it mean to be child of the living God—with Christ our elder brother?
“For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God” (Rom. 8:14-19, Gal. 4:5, Eph. 1:5, 1 Jo. 3:2).
All of creation groans and travails in pain. Everything awaits the manifestation (revelation, appearance) of the children of God (Rom. 8:19-22, Rev. 5:13).
How important, How vital to everything, is the manifestation of the sons of God? Will Firstfruits be essential in God’s eternal ever increasing government (Isa. 9:7)?
The Shocking Truth of What Our Calling IS
There are so many vital truths to understand regarding God’s holy plan for our lives. Too often, Truth as revealed through the Word of God is notably different than commonly accepted traditions and beliefs of society and professed Christianity.
- The Father will subdue Christ’s enemies. The first primary enemy is the invisible deceiving god of this world.
(Psa. 110:1, Mat. 4:1-11; 22:44-45, John 8:44, 2 Cor. 4:4, Heb. 1:13, Isa. 27:1, Rev. 12:9, 13-17, Rev. 20:1-3)
- Those who accept God’s call inherit salvation, inherit His Kingdom, inherit eternal life as a gift of grace (Eph. 2:8-9).
(Mat. 5:5; 19:29; 25:34, Mar. 10:17-21, Luke 10:25-37; 18:18-22, 1 Cor. 6:9-10; 15:50, Gal. 5:19-21, Rev.21:7)
- Because eternal life is not inherent in mankind; humans have no immortality, as do angelic beings (1 Cor. 15:53).
- Christians, Firstfruits, are adopted, grafted, begotten and ultimately born into the Kingdom, the family, of God.
(Luke 20:35-36, Rom. 8:14-16, 23; 9:4, Gal. 4:6; 5:3-6, Eph. 1:3-14; 3:14-15, Phil. 2:15, 1 Jo. 3:1-2; 4:4; 5:2-4)
- Sufferings experienced during this mortal life pale in comparison to the glory that shall be revealed (Rom. 8:18).
- Ear has not heard, eye has not seen, what God has prepared for those who love & wait for Him (Isa. 64:4, 1 Cor. 2:9).
- The Saints, Firstfruits, will be given vital roles in God’s government to set everything right, to revitalize all of creation.
(Isa. 9:7; 30:20-21, Eze. 47:8-9, Luke 4:18, Rom. 8:19-21, Rev. 1:6; 5:9-10; 22:1-3, 14)
Why has life throughout all of creation suffered? Because God subjected creation to futility by reason of hope (Rom. 8:19-21).
There is a purpose, and a hope, in the subjection of creation to frailty and death. The called, repented, converted, character developed and finally changed from mortal—to immortal—Firstfruits, are a vital part that hope for the future (Rom. 8:21).
The spiritual element that rebelled against almighty God and His right ways of life and living (Satan—the adversary—and those with him) will be removed, and ultimately more than replaced by the sons of God; who will then be born of the spirit, born to eternal life as God’s children through the resurrection (Luke 20:36, John 3:6-8) to faithfully serve God for ever & ever!
How can that be? And how can God know that the Firstfruits will be eternally faithful?
Because they will have already, through a life of overcoming, proved that they will put down their nature that is contrary to the nature and perfect will of God; and will have put on the divine nature through obedience to God, and fulfillment of His holy will in their own mortal lives—before immortality is given to them, as a gift—by truly accepting God’s provision for salvation, and all of the conversion and overcoming that it entails (Rom. 6:12-18, Rev. 2:7, 11, 17, 26; 3:5, 12, 21; 17:14).
1 John 3:1-5 Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure. Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law. And ye know that he was manifested to take away our sins; and in him is no sin.
1 John 3:10 In this the children of God are manifest . . . whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother. 1 John 4:4 Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world. 1 John 5:2-3 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.
It is really that simple. And it is really that true.
Though we should know, as Firstfruits—we do walk and live with eternal life and death on the scales and in the balances!
Those who are truly called by God today, to understand and to live according to His Truth, are provided every assistance and every assurance; and we do have the utmost obligation to carry out and fulfill God’s holy will in our lives—now, today; for this indeed is our day of judgement, as well as our day of salvation (Heb. 10:24-29, 1 Pet. 4:17-19).
Yet, for such an incomprehensible salvation! For such an eternally bright future! May Almighty God indeed help us to be “called, chosen and faithful” to His inexpressibly glorious eternal plan (Isa. 64:4, 1 Cor. 2:9-10, Heb. 3:6; 4:14-16; 10:19-23)!
Most Not Now Called
Again, looking at the range of human history, God has not cast away His people, Israel. But He blinded them until the end of Gentile times, so that through their fall, salvation comes to the Gentiles, who, through Christ, are individually grafted in, or spiritually adopted into the family of Israel. This is currently the dispensation when God is calling a people for His name (Acts 15:14-17) to be a Kingdom and Priests, reigning with Christ in the Kingdom during the thousand years (Rev. 5:10).
After this dispensation of calling of all nations a people for His name—”I will return,” promises the Eternal; “and will build again the tabernacle of David, which is fallen down; and I will build again the ruins thereof and I (Christ) will set it up.”
Why? “That the residue of men might seek after the Lord.” In God’s Kingdom the “residue of men” will have an opportunity.
Tabernacle signifies worship. During this present Church age, the Jews and Israel are blinded. Their church “tabernacle” is fallen down. Israel is “in Babylon.” After this, Christ will return, and then the rest of men—blinded Israel, and Gentiles alike, will seek after the Lord, when Satan will be chained and locked away, and Christ will reign as King of kings and Lord of lords (1 Tim. 6:14-16, Acts 15:14-17, Rev. 19:16; 20:1-3).
Those of the Firstfruits of His salvation, then made immortal, will then reign with Him, as kings and priests in the wonderful work building a new civilization. During this present time Israel is mostly blinded until the fullness of the Gentiles come in; and so all Israel (Rom. 11:1-26) shall then be saved from sin; for the Deliverer, Christ, shall come out of Zion! All Israel shall be brought to repentance and saved from sin.
How? Because Christ turns ungodliness from Israel by forgiving sin (Rom. 11:26-36). Christ will take away their sins!
In this present dispensation, Israel (as a whole) has not believed. The tabernacle of David is fallen down (Amos 9:11, Acts 15:16, Rom 11:31-32). Yet, through the mercy extended to the “Elect,” picked out in this age to serve as kings and priests with Christ in His Kingdom, then others, who heretofore had not obtained mercy, may then also obtain mercy (Rom. 11:31-36).
How amazing is God’s great plan of redemption when we truly fully understand it as illustrated through His annual Holydays!
First Harvest Now
Romans 8:23 and James 1:18 call the saints of this dispensation the Firstfruits of God’s salvation. This dispensation—the picking out and preparing of people to bear His name—began on that Feast of Firstfruits when the Holy Spirit was given.
This Feast annually pictures this great event, this great “mystery” dispensation, in God’s redemptive plan.
Passover, Unleavened Bread and Firstfruits fall at the beginning or spring of the year. They picture events that occur at the beginning of, or within, this formative dispensation. They are foundational events in God’s great plan for all of humankind.
The group of holydays coming at the end of the year all symbolize tremendous events in God’s Plan of redemption to occur yet future, at the end of the dispensation! They all come in the seventh month; their fulfillment will introduce the seventh thousand years—reversing the history of tragedy and the travesty of human experience apart from the government of God.
The churches of “Babylon” today teach it is the mission of the Church to save the world. They teach that all who ever shall be saved are now being saved, in this present dispensation. They teach that “Probation ends” by the second coming of Christ.
If this were true, what a failure would God’s plan be. Few have truly been saved in this dispensation. One-third of people alive even today have not heard the explanation of the only name under heaven whereby we must be saved (Acts 4:12, Phil. 2:10).
Are the vast majority of all who have ever lived eternally lost, because they never heard, lost and condemned without a chance?
Common teaching today is that God has cast away His people Israel; that they are eternally doomed and lost. If these critics had been keeping these annual holydays, commanded to be kept forever and faithfully kept by the Church as recorded in scripture, they might’ve understood God’s wonderful Plan, and might not be distorting the righteousness and justice of God.
The Church is to declare The Gospel. What Gospel? The good news of the Kingdom of God! The Good News of the thousand years of restitution of all things, when Christ will have returned and will be reigning in power and great glory!
Israel is blinded in part—but only until the completion of this Gentile dispensation. To this day—most in China, India, Iran, Arabia, Russia, Indonesia and many other regions have still not truly heard nor understood the provision for their salvation. Yet God will provide a witness unto the ends of the earth (Mat. 24:14, Rev. 11:3-6).
Many are called during this time, but only a few are chosen. The call is to remain faithful unto the end. Those God picks out for His name shall be made immortal and shall then reign during the thousand years of the Kingdom of God upon the earth.
Israel is blinded until the end of the times of the Gentiles (Rom. 11:25). And so, Israel’s blindness will soon be removed. The heavens receive Jesus until the times of restitution of all things (Acts 3:21).
Those who’ve answered God’s call since that day that the Holy Spirit was first given are just the Firstfruits of God’s Plan of Salvation. This dispensation is the picking out only of Firstfruits of those to be saved; being tried and tested to qualify for positions as kings and priests in God’s Kingdom, to affect, then, the real salvation of the world!
The count and span of fifty days represents the time when God is calling and preparing His Firstfruits. The Feast represents the final readiness, the final harvest of the ripe Firstfruits—fully prepared and accepted to serve with Christ in His Kingdom.
The Final Call
We are closing in on a time of profound change and ultimate renewal of the earth and a new experience for all human kind.
Yet it would be remiss to not remind us all that there will first be “…a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time…” (Dan. 12:1). As Christ said—”For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened” (Mat. 24:21-22).
It is during this tumultuous time just before the return of Christ the two witnesses prophecy from Jerusalem (Rev. 11:3-7). Upon their death people of the earth “rejoice” and “make merry” because these prophets “tormented” them (Rev. 11:10). How corrupt will the world be at the return of Christ? ”And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come” (Rev. 11:18).
The world is so oblivious, that “…as it was in the days of Noah, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man” (Luke 17:27). “…also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded” (Luke 17:28). They do not realize how Godless they are—and how they are in such peril (Isa. 13:9-13, Joel 3:14-17, Hag. 2:6-7, Luke 17:30).
Yet is exactly during this time that God is calling the “eleventh hour” laborers (Mat. 20:6-9). No doubt, during the time of the two witnesses, there are some, who will hear, and will fundamentally then experience a profound crash course in Salvation.
“Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in hither the poor, and the maimed, and the halt, and the blind…Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled.” (Luke 14:21-23).
At this time God is particularly concerned about the Firstfruits. “Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads” (Rev. 7:3). He wants them sealed before the end.
“After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb” (Rev. 7:9-10).
“And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What are these which are arrayed in white robes? and whence came they? And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb” (Rev. 7:13-14).
This will be a time of deception—”For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many (Mat. 24:5).
It will be a time of war, extreme difficulty, “…nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. All these are the beginning of sorrows” (Mat. 24:7-8).
He tells us it will be a time of hatred and betrayal—”Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake” (Mat. 24:9).
And it shall be a time of deception and apostasy—”And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold” (Mat. 24:11-12).
“But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved” (Mat. 24:13).
He sternly warns of the abomination of desolation (Dan. 9:27; 12:10-12) “except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened” (Mat. 24:22). And again of false Christs (Mat. 24:24-26).
“For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be” (Mat. 24:27). ”Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen” (Rev. 1:7).
It is not an invisible coming, nor is it a secret rapture. But it is the consummation of the age.
“And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other” (Mat. 24:31).
Harvest of the Firstfruits and Christ’s Return
Then it is that God shall set His hand again the second time to recover the remnant of His People—all of Israel (Isa. 11:11).
Then it is that “The Lord will come with fire, and . . . by fire and by his sword will the Lord plead with all flesh . . . And I will set a sign among them, and I will send those that escape [these plagues] of them unto the nations [Gentiles] . . . that have not heard my name, either have seen my glory; and they shall declare my glory among the Gentiles (Isaiah 66:15, 16, 19).
Then it is that “living waters shall go out from Jerusalem,” and the Gentile nations that have not heard previously “shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, and to keep the Feast of Tabernacles” (Zec. 14:8, 16-17)!
Then many nations “shall come and say, Come and let us go up to the [nation] of the Lord . . . he will teach us His ways . . . we will walk in His paths . . . the law shall go forth of Zion and the Word of the Lord from Jerusalem. . . . He shall judge . . . and rebuke strong nations . . . they shall beat their swords into plowshares . . . neither shall they learn war any more” (Isa. 2:1-4).
“In that day saith the Lord . . . the Lord shall reign over them in Mount Zion from henceforth, even for ever” (Mic. 4:1-7).
This does not apply to God’s Church now, but to the glorious Kingdom after Christ returns (Eph. 5:27, Phil. 3:21, Tit. 2:13).
What an astonishing plan of Redemption! His Firstfruits are now fully prepared. Called, chosen, converted overcomers—His Firstfruits will be at His side (1 Thes. 4:17, Zec. 14:5). Christ’s enemies are now finally to be fully subdued (Heb. 1:13; 10:13).
Adam sinned. All have sinned. From Adam to now we behold a chronicle of man without God—much suffering and failure.
God, in His great wisdom, has permitted men to prove to ourselves what sinners we are! How helpless we are of ourselves! The lesson is only when God Himself undertakes to save men, sending Christ to rule this earth, can the world finally be saved!
Those now being saved are Firstfruits, and will have the profound honor of assisting Christ in His final work of redemption!
That is God’s true Plan of Redemption, as taught from Genesis to Revelation! How contrary to the teachings of this world. Yet that is the Plan as pictured through God’s annual Holydays, and confirmed throughout the whole body of Scripture.
May Almighty God fortify His called Firstfruits to be faithfully keeping His Holydays—worshiping Him in Spirit and Truth— and may He help us to not lose sight of His holy plan, to not be deceived by false prophets or false Christs in these end times.
Indissoluble for Salvation
And still, some professing Christians might be naïvely inclined to ask: “what do these days have to do with my salvation?”
Of course, the answer—for those who hear, and understand, all that these Holydays reveal and impart—is “everything!”
Passover represents the Christ’s Sacrifice for our sins, “For even Christ, our Passover, was sacrificed for us” (1 Cor. 5:7 NKJV). Passover reaffirms the New Covenant we have entered into through Christ’s shed blood. Broken unleavened bread and red wine represent His broken body and His shed blood (John 6:53). He is our only source of life, and the only way to Salvation.
We “Therefore purge out the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, since you truly are unleavened” (1 Cor. 5:7 NKJV).
“Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth” (1 Cor. 5:8). We are set free from slavery to sin, protected from our adversaries, immersed into God and delivered thereby, tried and tested by God—and specially blessed for obedience (Ex. 15:26).
It was on the very day of the Feast of Firstfruits the law was given (Ex. 19:9-20); and it was on this very day that the Power to enable us to truly keep that law was also given—the Holy Spirit, to indwell God’s called Firstfruits (Acts 2:2-5, 17-18, 38-39).
God’s Spirit within us will resurrect us to eternal life (Rom. 8:11). The Holy Spirt is the Spirit of Truth which brings all things to our remembrance (John 14:26). His Spirit empowers us (Luke 24:49) and by the Spirit Christ indwells His Firstfruits (Col. 1:27).
The Feast of Firstfruits embodies these vital truths. The very purpose for our lives, and the ability (via God’s Spirit) to be enabled to fulfill that holy purpose is expressed through these Holy Convocations which are given for our Spiritual benefit.
As the Sabbath is commanded for our own good physically and spiritually (to keep us in respect for our Creator), these Holy Convocations are commanded for our own good, physically and spiritually; and they profoundly impart vital understanding.
We’ve only touched on the beginning, the start, of what God has planned for humankind! There is so much more to come!
May we be enacted with David to say “The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes” (Psalm 19:8)! May we be given to understand—and enabled to fulfill—God’s holy perfect will in our lives (1 Cor. 1:8, Phil. 1:6, Col. 1:25-28, 2 Thes. 1:11)! As Firstfruits let us be prepared to serve with Christ in His Kingdom to then help effect salvation for every man, woman and child who ever has been, and who ever will be (Ezek. 37:1-14, John 5:29)!