There is an old saying that it is always darkest before the dawn. Certainly, it was a dark day and a darkened end to an age when Jesus was crucified. Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour. And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? MAT 27:45 46 But, out of this darkness - within a period of fifty days - the earths of His disciples were bathed in fire and a new beginning of an age of enlightenment was begun. For those who were willing to receive it, the old ways of thinking were done away with and a new lightning had dawned from the eastern sky and began extending itself to the west.
ACT 2:1 And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.
2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.
3 And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them.
4 And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
ACT 2:16 But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel;
17 And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:
19 And I will shew wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath; blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke:
20 The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and notable day of the Lord come:
Yes, the sun was turned into darkness and wonders were shown in the heavens - there was a great earthquake that split the veil in the temple. But, the sun and earth were not destroyed and what was thought to be a bad thing turned out to be a blessing for the peoples of the earth. What happened did not apply so much to the physical earth and physical sun as it did to the mind of mankind.
MAT 27:50 Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost.
51 And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent;
52 And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose,
53 And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.
Now, we must ask you - was the holiest place veil of the temple splitting the important event that happened or, was the splitting of what the veil symbolized the more important event? Jesus explained this to the Pharisees, but his explanation went right by them because their way of thinking represented the old heavens - the old way the thinking that would soon pass away with signs and wonders in the heavens manifesting - when the new heaven (or way of thinking) appeared on the day of Pentecost. Pentecost removed the veil to the entrance of the third level (court) of thinking and that veil was contained within the body (or temple).
JOH 2:19 Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.
20 Then said the Jews, Forty and six years was this temple in building, and wilt thou rear it up in three days?
22 When therefore he was risen from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this unto them; and they believed the scripture, and the word which Jesus had said.
So, has it not become quite clear that if we had taken the prophecies of Joel and what happened in the way the physical earth and sun and the physical temple, we would have missed the true significance of one of the greatest events in mankind's history? When the dispensation changed from the age of law to that of grace, certain things changed with it. Paul summed up some of these changes in the following verses.
GAL 4:1 Now I say, That the heir, as long as he is a child, differeth nothing from a servant, though he be lord of all;
2 But is under tutors and governors until the time appointed of the father.
3 Even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under the elements [# 4747 Stoicheions] of the world:
4 But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law,
5 To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.
GAL 4:9 But now, after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements [# 4747 Stoicheions], whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage?
10 Ye observe days, and months, and times, and years.
11 I am afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you labour in vain.
Why have we highlighted the Greek word for elements which is "stoicheions" in the above verses. When the fire of Pentecost set upon the heads of the 120 in the upper room, were not the weak and beggarly elements of the law dissolved and replaced in the 120 by the leading of the Holy Spirit and fire? Did the elements in the physical upper room fly apart so that the place was on fire or exploded physically? Certainly not - the changes were made to the minds and bodies of the 120! Stoicheion means "something orderly in arrangement". And yet the weak and beggarly elements of the law were dissolved! They were replaced with the higher order of the Spirit led mind. Could Peter have been talking about a further work to build upon the in-part work that was done at Pentecost when he wrote about the old heavens and earth being destroyed by fire? What do you think?
2PE 3: 8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.
9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
10 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 elements [# 4747 Stoicheions] shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.
11 Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness,
12 Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements [# 4747 Stoicheions] shall melt with fervent heat?
13 Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.
14 Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent
The same Greek word "stoicheions" is used in Peter's dissertation above. So perhaps he is not talking about burning up the physical earth and heavens, but he is describing what it will take to finish the in-part work that was done at Pentecost - on what is contained within the temple we call our body. Contrary to popular opinion, Peter tells us that the above event is something to look forward to - rather than something to dread! So, how long will this take to come about. Why did Peter refer to one day as a thousand years?
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