Gal.1: 4 Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father:
But how are we escaping the rot of this present evil world.?
Just as Noah ESCAPED the destruction in his days, finding grace in the sight of God (Gen.6:8) through his belief in God’s word, and eventually sailing through the storm in the Ark even so are we escaping from the present evil corrupt world of the ungodly through pour faith in the living word of God . Mind you, Noah was in the midst of the storm, not up somewhere in heaven, so also are we getting saved today through our faith in Christ (1 Jon. 5:4) our ‘Ark of safety’ and by our putting on God’s divine nature. Look at it “… He promised to SAVE US FROM THE LUST AND ROTTENNESS ALL AROUND US, and to give us His own character” 2 Pet. 1:4 TLB. Please read verses 4-10.
With the imparted Divine Nature of His, we will be able to live a godly life in this present evil world. (Tit 2:12, Phil. 2:12-15, Math 5:14-16) with the darkness of all sort all around us. Isa. 60:1-2.
So our escape is not through any form of ‘rapture’ out of the world. Therefore the prayer of Jesus to the Father is that, His followers be kept safe in this world from the influence of Satan and his power. They are not part of this world any more than I am: make them PURE and Holy through teaching them your words of truth” Jon. 17:15:17, Tlb. Through Holiness and righteousness is by the living world of God.
Again, the destruction is upon the ungodly, the desires of men, let us not forget that, for that is the way it was in the days of Noah, the ungodly were the only ones destroyed, the righteous lived on.
THE PASSING AWAY OF THE HEAVENS 2 PET 3:10A
“But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in the which the HEAVENS shall pass away with a great noise, and the ELEMENT SHALL MELT with fervent heat, the EARTH also and the WORKS that are therein shall be burnt up” 2 Peter 3:10.
Looking at the above Scripture, what are these heavens and earth that shall pass away?
THE LANGUAGE OF THE PHYSICAL HEAVENS.
Looking at Ps 69:34, it says “Let the heaven and earth praise Him, the seas and everything that moveth therein” See also Ps 19:1-4, telling us of their declaration of God’s power, wisdom and majesty as long as they continue to exist.
In other words, their existence reveals the glory of God in creation, and so the Gospel of God’s creative power is found in His creation – the heavens and the earth, (Rom. 1:20) and they all depends on God for their existence as part of His creation (Ps 148:5-6).
Therefore , we found that, the heavens are used as a simile, relating to things that are everlasting. Therefore, they constitute the best things to describe the peaceful continuous reign of the Davidic Kingdom inherited by Christ. Ps. 72:5-7, Lk. 1:32-33, “… They shall fear thee as long as the sun and moon endure throughout all generations …”.
And so, in text like Ps. 102:25-26 describing heaven as “perishing” and as “being replaced like a worn out garment” should not be understood in a literal sense, otherwise that will also mean that the reign of Christ will “wax old like a garment” However, may we be mindful of the word “AS LONG” in the passage, Ps 72:5-7, suggesting to us, the possibility of change at the will of God, because we do know that through the fall, creation including the physical heavens are all under corruption (state of imperfection), hence we are told
“ … that creation is groaning and travaileth in pain together until now, waiting for the manifestation of the sons of God, so that creation can be
delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of God’s children, besides we do know that , “that which is seen is temporal… “Rom. 8:20-22, 2 Cor. 4:18.
CAN WE SAY, “HEAVEN” IS A FIGURATIVE EXPRESSION IN THE BIBLE ?
God’s warning to the children of Israel, through Moses as they approach the land of Canaan says “But beware that your hearts do not turn from God to worship other gods, for if you do, the anger of the Lord will be hot against you, AND HE WILL SHUT THE HEAVENS – there will be no rain and no harvest, and you will quickly perish from the good land the Lord has given you”. Dt. 11:16-17tlb. And again “And if you still disobey me, I will punish you seven times more severely for your sins, I will BREAK YOUR PROUD POWER AND MAKE YOUR HEAVENS AS IRON, and YOUR EARTH AS BRONZE” Lev. 26:19tlb. Please compare Dt. 28:23-24, I Kgs. 8:35-36, 2 Chron. 7:13-14.
Considering the above Scriptures, it is self-evident that the “heaven” as used here is a symbol of the controlling power of the life of a people, for if the heaven causes the rain to fall upon the earth it will result in its fruitfulness and so a blessing of abundance will follow, whereas the “shutting of heaven – brass” will cause the earth to be hardened – iron, resulting in famine as a result of a sinful life (please see Jer. 14:1-9), to which only a heart searching repentance prayer to God can turn around. 2 Chron. 7:13-14.
Meaning that, man’s heaven (true spiritual source of life) has been shut up as long as he abides in Adam, resulting in a “cursed ground” (Gen. 3:17) speaking of man’s poverty stricken conditions, as the ground (human labour) will yield nothing but “thorns and thistles: Gen. 3:17-18.
Now, this is only describing to us the true picture of humanity without Christ, for “thou oh man art that earth!” for the earth (you) which drinketh in the rain (Spirit from heaven) that cometh oft upon it, and bringeth forth herbs (fruits of righteousness) meet for them by whom it is dressed, receiveth blessing from God; But that which beareth thorns and briers (fruits of unrighteousness) is rejected, and is nigh unto cursing; whose end is to be burned”. (Heb 6:7-8)
“Once they’ve personally experienced the sheer goodness of God’s Word and the powers breaking in on us — 6 if then they turn their backs on it, washing their hands of the whole thing, well, they can’t start over as if nothing happened. That’s impossible. Why, they’ve re-crucified Jesus! They’ve repudiated him in public! 7 Parched ground that soaks up the rain and then produces an abundance of carrots and corn for its gardener gets God’s “Well done!” 8 But if it produces weeds and thistles, it’s more likely to get cussed out. Fields like that are burned, not harvested” Heb.6:5-8.The
So you see the parched ground (earth) ready to be burn here is the house of Israel for rejecting the power of the Holy Spirit (Christ) and so producing thorns and thistle, the same effect of the cursed ground in Adam. In other words, they have reverted to their old ways of Judaistic worship, so all that is left is to have them burned, that is destroyed in AD 70 by the Roman soldiers. Hebrew was written to the Jewish believers in AD 63-67.
Therefore, we can see that the earth referred to here is a people and not planet earth that is being burned up or destroyed.? But rather a rebellious people.
To be continued…
(c) 2015 – Dr. David O. Ogaga