Background: I’m convinced the Cross is central to all of existence. If the Word is what drives all of life, the Cross is what the Word rests upon. Before time, during earth time and after time the Cross is found. All we have to do is look. All we have to do is “lift up our eyes.”
Paul of Tarsus is the only human who visited heaven and then returned to earth. He was told not to reveal any details. But in one of his letters he let the cat out of the bag. “I resolved to know nothing...except Jesus Christ and him crucified.”
That tells me the Cross IS everywhere. In heaven, on earth, on every page of the bible. The Cross is the secret to Christ-like living on a daily basis. What would Jesus do? He’d die to his flesh.
When asked what was of “first importance,” Paul didn’t hesitate to reveal what he had learned from his own trip to heaven. It was “that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the (Scriptures).” Not that Jesus lived an amazing life or that he performed astounding miracles. No, it was that Jesus died on the Cross for sin according to the script laid down in advance. (1st Corinthians 15:3)
Story: Buried in one of the most boring sections of the bible is found the Cross in all its glory. Isn’t God just like that? Numbers 2 describes in mind-numbing detail how the various tribes were to set up camp around the central hub of the priest’s families. Here’s how it breaks down:
22.300 Levites were to camp in the center hub around the Tabernacle, indicated by the “X”
186,000–those from the tribes of Judah, Isaachar and Zebulin were to camp on the east side of the Tabernacle
158,000–those from the tribes of Dan, Asher and Naphtali, to the north side
151,000–those from Reuben, Simeon and Gad, to the south side
108,000–those from Ephraim, Manasseh and Benjamin, to the west side
When you plot this out proportionately, this is what it would look like from the air:
151K-------------|------------158k ----------> North
Comments: Why would God do this? To witness to onlookers! In Numbers 23-24 the evil prophet Balaam views the tribes from this birds-eye perspective. “And in the morning Balak took Balaam and brought him up to Bamoth-baal, and from there he saw a fraction of the people.” Numbers 24:2 says, “And Balaam lifted up his eyes and saw Israel camping tribe by tribe. And the Spirit of God came upon him...”
Balaam saw the Cross when he “lifted up his eyes.” God took him into another dimension where he even saw Jesus hanging from that living Cross.
Besides Israel’s enemies, angels and saints would see the Cross. “Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight...looking to Jesus...who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross...” (Hebrews 12:1-2)
If there is life on nearby planets and they had telescope-like vision, they’d see the Cross outlined in the white sands.
Jesus himself points out the Cross in John 3:14-15, recalling when Moses had been instructed to raise up a pole with a bronze serpent in Numbers 21. “And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.” Note the term “lifted up.” As I say here, that indicates a door opening into another dimension. I’m convinced the movements Moses made in raising the pole were identical to those of the Roman soldiers 1500 years later. Those looking at the bronze serpent for healing even saw fleeting visions of Jesus hanging on that pole. That’s God’s love at work.
I believe God had Israel multitasking during their 38 years of wandering in the Sinai. With their million feet-prints leaving large swaths in the sand, they were drawing the Cross. Not only that, I believe they were also writing the Torah letter by letter in giant letters for witnesses to contemplate. Satan’s counterfeit would be the Nazca lines of Peru.
When Jesus bent down in the sand to write, as John 8:6 records, will you be surprised to someday learn he drew a Cross? Didn’t all of life, all our sins, play out on the Cross? Wouldn’t the Cross be the great truth-detector that would cause the woman’s accusers to come unglued as they saw their sins displayed by the Ultimate Hidden Camera?
The Cross is everywhere. It’s the centerpiece of heaven before time began. It’s the Tree of Life “in the midst of the garden” of Eden. It’s indelibly etched on planet Earth. It’s the tree of life in the New Jerusalem (Revelation 22) whose leaves are “for the healing of the nations.”
The Cross is even infused in our very bodies as the protein molecule laminin. Colossians 1:17 says “And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together.” That is the function of the laminin glycoprotein, to hold cells together. Which of course is simply an expression of DNA which is simply an expression of God’s Word.
The quantum secret
Story: Going where angels fear to tread, I’m convinced that quantum physics is God’s last stand. And his first stand. It’s no mystery that God is light. Man, created in His image, was also light at the beginning.
The Fall was more catastrophic than we can imagine. How can a massless being of light comprehend what it means to become localized, to have weight, to be grounded? Yet that’s precisely what happened. God severed ties by pronouncing curses on the serpent, then Eve, then Adam and finally, the world. All of that is recorded in Genesis 3. The really bad news–changing from a light wave into a grounded particle–wasn’t revealed until much later.
But God has a sense of humor. We think of God as being “really big.” Who would ever guess he’s also “really small?” In fact, that’s how he’s retained ownership and planted his flag. At the atomic and sub-atomic level where particles appear and disappear, first here and then instantly, a million miles there...like it or not, that’s God’s territory!
Here’s a list, in no particular order, of some of the weird aspects of quantum physics. I should say, of God’s character.
1–Particles making up atoms can either be particles or waves. Particles have weight, waves don’t.
2–Atomic particles can be everywhere at once. This is called non-locality.
3–Particles entangle with each other. This connection, under post-Fall conditions, is tenuous and falls apart (decoheres)as distance increases between the two.
4–Our world is digital, not analog. All changes occur in distinct steps, not sliding from one state to another. The simplest digital representation is a “zero” state (off) and a “one” state (on).
5–Depending on who you prefer, Niels Bohr or Hugh Everett, our thoughts either affect subatomic particles or they don’t. If it’s the latter, parallel universes are created every second.
6–Time is like a bus that speeds up or slows down. It’s all “relative,” as they say, meaning your point of view.
7–The energy contained in purely “empty space” is mind-blowing.
8–Particles confronted with impossibly thick walls can simply tunnel through.
9–Atoms are mostly empty space. Since we’re composed of atoms, what we are is...mostly empty space.
10–What we see around us may be a holographic projection, only a shadow on the wall.
11–There are 4 dimensions (length, width, height and time) in our world. String theory says more than 10 exist.
Bible pages are dripping with quantum phenomena.
Thanks to the great people around here and those who came from afar in the face of the impending snowstorm, the premiere showing at the Canton Rialto was a sellout, standing room only, and many people had to be turned away. We quickly arranged a second showing at 9 pm for those who could make it, and due to popular demand we will have a showing again on Thursday, January 28th at 6:30.
Thanks for the great support and we hope to see you there!
Thursday, January 21st at 6:30 pm, please join us for our latest documentary world premiere!
The Canton Rialto Theatre, Canton, PA. Tickets $5.00.
Background: I’m a visual guy. My chances of remembering increase slightly when there’s a drawing involved. What I’ve mapped out here is God’s plan from the beginning before time to the end of time. Right now, we’re locked in the “B” world, the one which Paul implores us to “wake up from your drunken stupor...” (I Corinthians 15:34)
Comments: Genesis 1:2 is typically translated “Now the earth was formless and empty...” but it can also be translated “Now the earth became formless and empty...” Since God often does things in triple sets, having an “A, B and C” world makes sense, each with its own set of natural laws. The “C” world, for example, won’t have a sun or any sea. Gold is transparent. The curse has been removed. (Revelation 21, 22) There will be no death, no decay. Blood won’t be needed anymore. Everything is light.
Nobody knows for sure when Satan was cast down to earth except Jesus, who admits in Luke 10:18 “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven.” The “A” world seems a likely time for Satan’s plunge. After all, Genesis 1:2 says “darkness was [my note: already] over the surface of the deep...” Revelation 12:7-9 describes the war in heaven while Isaiah 14 describes the pride that led to his downfall. That pride then infected us all once Satan tempted Eve with the killer hook “you will be like God.” (Genesis 3:5)
The “A” world may have been similar to Eden pre-fall. Psalm 104:2 says God “wraps himself in light as with a garment.” Adam and Eve, as God’s image, were beings of light too. When Satan was conducting interviews for each person’s script, Ezekiel 28:14 says Satan “walked among the fiery stones.” That’s us! Our speech was a digital sort of communication– without interference, perfectly transmitted. Looking to the future (and the past, as the clothesline theory indicates) Zephaniah 3:9 says, “For at that time I will change the speech of the peoples to a pure speech.”
Here’s an outrageous proposal. What if there had been a “chosen nation” in the “A” world called the US? Could that be why the bible makes no mention of the US in bible prophecy in the “B” world and why Israel now occupies chosen nation status?
The “B” world is made up of atoms whose substance blinks in and out of existence. First they’re a visible particle, then they’re an invisible wave. The world’s building blocks are mostly empty space. (An atom’s spaciousness is equal to a golfball inside a football stadium.) Solomon, the smartest man the world has ever seen, said it best in Ecclesiastes 1:2, “Emptiness, emptiness...all is empty.” The “B” world seems solid because our senses are blunted. We’re blind to the very small and the very large. It’s as if the world were made of swiss cheese and we’ve got thick mittens on our hands. We try in vain to feel for the holes.
The “B” world’s life source is found in blood. Blood that cries out from the ground. Blood that is supposed to be sacrificially shed by animals without defect and ultimately, by one human without defect–Jesus. Leviticus 17:11 says “For the life of a creature is in the blood, and I have given it to you to make atonement for yourselves on the altar.” The biological information driving this tremendous life is encoded in DNA. The cosmic information driving everything is encoded in the Word.
It’s all about Israel. Jesus was, is and forever will be Jewish. Gentiles, slow to recognize their Jewish roots, are included only by the grace of God.
My attitude toward communion has gone through several phases over the years. I suppose we all start out clueless, grasping the cup and wafer as part of an empty ritual.
It was Gene Scott who connected dots for me between Isaiah 53 and 1st Corinthians 11. “With his stripes we are healed” describes what happened at the Cross. That healing is now a done deal (past tense!) as Peter confidently says in 1 Peter 2:24 “...you have been healed.” It’s in the script.
So now when I take the bread, I can claim the promise of healing.
Gene felt so strongly about this teaching, he offered communion no less than four times a day on his satellite network.
Armed with fresh insight, I take another look at Paul’s 1st Corinthians 11 teaching in the light of the Cross.
Jesus chose the breaking of bread to represent his dying on the Cross. Is there anything more common, routine and necessary than eating? We’re to remember the Cross as often as we eat. This drill could become automatic at every cross-road we encounter:
A.Jesus died for that particular sin that hangs in the balance in the valley of decision
B. I was united with Jesus on the Cross for that particular sin
C. Therefore I died to that sin looming in front of me
D.Jesus overcame that sin through death, burial and resurrection and through entanglement.
E. I overcame that sin through death, burial and resurrection, clinging to Jesus all the while
The multi-step A=B=C=D=E process doesn’t lend itself to an easy formula. So lazy brains that we are, we will try to dumb it down. If we’re not carefull, we’ll soon have another ritual on our hands.
Note that we risk our health and our very life if we trivialize the Cross. Paul warns, “that is why many of you are weak and ill, and some have died.” The key is properly “discerning the body.” We need to know what really happened to Jesus on the Cross.
Gene Scott stressed this discernment process Paul speaks of in verse 27. “Whoever therefore eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner...” That doesn’t mean we should fret about whether we’ve sinned or whether we’re good enough to partake. No, it means contemplating and pondering Steps A through E, concluding that Jesus has done it all for us. It’s his righteousness that clothes us, not our own “good works” we pass off as righteous.
The same holds for the cup which represents the shed blood of Jesus.
So we’re to remember daily. Many times a day we’re to “proclaim the Lord’s death.”
It’s at the Cross we get the grace, we get the power to choose a godly over a fleshly path. Peter nails this point in 1st Peter 2:24 “He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness.”
The first time I unveiled this concept, I was on a Christian-centered internet dating site. One woman’s profile had caught my eye because she was a musician, artsy and local. But her profile didn’t mention God. So I sent her an email explaining what my vision of heaven was like, pretty much the story you’re about to read. Within 24 hours she had disappeared. Terminated her membership. Gone!
Anyway, for the past year I’d been thinking about the Cross and what might have happened there. One day I read Del Washburn’s take on Revelation 13:8, speaking of “the Lamb that was slain from the creation of the world.” His ideas lit a fire in my head. “What?” I thought, “Jesus was crucified in the beginning?”
Are you ready?
Scene 1: Heaven. Time hasn’t begun yet.
Every soul that will ever exist is sitting around, doing what souls do, praising God. They look like “orbs” of light. No flesh and bone yet.
Satan, God’s right-hand man, has been given the task of transcribing in minute detail God’s plan for each soul’s earth life. In other words, our “book of life” is being assembled letter by letter, line by line, moment by moment from start to finish.
It’s Satan’s job to lay out options at each “cross road” in our upcoming “free willed” life. One fork is God’s fast track where we do His will, the right thing. The other choice is to sin and follow our flesh.
Of course we don’t know what sin is yet. But it sounds like fun as Satan describes it to us. It has a certain appeal.
So Satan dutifully writes down our choices. At 4:05:23 on January 23, 2019 we will choose to sin by doing _____. At 4:08:20 on the same day we will choose to sin by saying ______. And so on and on and on.
After what is truly an eternity our book of life has been constructed. Before Satan leaves to go to the next soul-orb, he says “God wants me to tell you that all those sins you chose to do...there are terrible consequences. Come over here and see.”
Instantly we’re in the middle of heaven where the Cross is. Jesus, part of God, is hanging there. As Satan reads off each sin, we see Jesus writhe in indescribable agony. We see him die by separating from his Father. In fact, we are no longer spectators as we die with him. We accompany Jesus as he descends into Hades. We follow in his train as he then ascends back to heaven.
For each and every of our millions of sins we watch, we die, we descend, we ascend. Incredibly, we are entangled with Jesus face to face on the Cross. There is no separation. He dies, we die. He was ultimately victorious over that sin, we were virtually victorious over that sin.
After more eternity, our time line with its “cross road” moments of either overcoming or succumbing are written.
Satan asks us, “Now that you’ve seen the consequences of sin #_____, are you sure you want to keep that sin #_____ in your book?” We say, “Yes, I’m sure.”
So it was for each and every sin.
After processing 18 billion orbs, Satan becomes so familiar, so casual with sin and Jesus’ reaction that he decides to explore some loopholes. Simultaneously Earth materialized and Satan’s darkness was drawn to it, along with his rebellious followers. A whole new battlefield has been established.
Later on in eternity all of us orbs were looking down upon the earth God had created. Someone said, “There’s the Garden of Eden.” Some other orb cried out, “There’s God’s created humans, Adam and Eve.” A hush, odd for heaven, came over all of us orbs as one said, “There is Satan!”
His temptation led to the Fall.
God pronounced the Curse.
At that instant our orb memory was wiped out. We couldn’t remember heaven...or the Cross...or choosing all of our sins. The next thing we knew, we were being born in flesh and blood bodies.
Our timeline was now unfolding rapidly, “choosing” to sin at “cross road” #1, #2...#45,009...#1,056,745. At a pre-ordained age and time we, you “chose” to follow Jesus. Now we have the power to overcome at those “cross road” junctions.
Now can you understand why the internet lady fled from me?
What’s fascinating about this scenario is its simple explanation for what we call “free will” here on earth.
It also explains how we could be crucified (past tense!) with Christ as the first 8 verses of Romans 6 says. Just so we’ll get it, God creates the Cross experience three times. First, in heaven, before the Fall. Next, during the darkness at the Cross in 32 AD. Finally, on a presumably daily basis here and now.
This gives some insight into the occupational hazards of Satan’s profession. It unfortunately planted a seed which led to his being kicked out.
Here are scriptures to connect some of these dots:
Perhaps Jesus was presented as Savior to everyone–all orb souls–in heaven before time began as 1 Timothy 4:10 and Hebrews 7:27 suggests. But not all orb souls perceive him as Lord during the darkness of the Cross in 32 AD as Hebrews 9:28 says.