There are seven ERAs described in the bible, depicting 7 periods of time and the activity and prevalent attitudes in the Church of God during those periods of time.
However in two of these time periods, the last two, Christ is shown doing something Himself to aide these two specific eras or time frames of the Church. Rev. 3:7-22
At no other time during the entire history of the new testament church has the bible indicated that Christ did something specific for a specific ERA of the Church.
Now during the Philadelphian ERA of the church, Christ opened a door for the leader of that church to walk through to preach the true Gospel to the world in power for the first time ever. At no time in the history of the church did the true Gospel of God and Christ go out to the whole world in such power.
It was determined that God had sent Mr. Armstrong in the spirit and power of Elijah to bring back to the church, foundational doctrines and the understanding of key data that unlocked our understanding of Prophecy.
Having received this deluge of Spiritual Knowledge, Christ stepped into the picture directly for the first time recorded in the Bible. This is not to say that Christ has not worked with His church before He surely has but here is recorded that Christ is personally doing something in a specific ERA of His church. In Rev 3:7 Christ begins to speak to the angel of the church(the called out ones) in Philadelphia.
Rev 3:7 And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write; These things saith he that is holy, he that is true, he that hath the key of David, he that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth;
Rev 3:8 I know thy works: behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it: for thou hast a little strength, and hast kept my word, and hast not denied my name.
Rev 3:9 Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have loved thee.
Rev 3:10 Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.
Rev 3:11 Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown.
Rev 3:12 Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.
Rev 3:13 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.
Notice verse 8 Christ Himself opened a door for the called out ones in Philadelphia. It was determined that this tied in to the prophetic “Witness Work” of Matthew 24 :14;
Mat 24:14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
In fact Mr. Armstrong often talked about how God had called such a large number of people to the body of Christ during this ERA so that they would have the resources to do the Witness Work of taking the Gospel to the World as a witness and to the Leaders as well.
This was the first time that Christ had done something directly relating to a specific ERA of the Called Out ones throughout the history of the Church. Each ERA of the Called out ones of God had works, He says that He knows the works of each of the ERAs. But in Philadelphia He actually steps in to help them accomplish a huge mission.
We are of course all intimately familiar with all of this as most of us came out of the Philadelphian ERA. So Is Christ doing something similar again during Laodicea? Well lets look at what He says.
Rev 3:14 And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;
Rev 3:15 I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot.
Rev 3:16 So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.
Rev 3:17 Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:
Rev 3:18 I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.
Rev 3:19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.
Rev 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
Rev 3:21 To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.
Rev 3:22 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.
Notice verse 20. Just as He shows us in verse 8 what He did during Philadelphia, in verse 20 He does the same. He says that He is standing at the door knocking and that if any man hears Him and opens the door to Him He will come in a eat with him. Feed Him if you will.
Notice some peculiar differences here:
- He opened a door to mass media for the entire church group to walk through. Here was a group effort to do a work that Christ had made possible.
- He made it by first sending the Elijah as He had promised to give to the church the full Gospel Message and the full foundational doctrines and Prophecies that were needed for them to get ready for Christ.
- He called many more people in this ERA than in any other ERA before so that there would indeed be enough resources for Mr. Armstrong to accomplish the prophetic mission that he had been given to do.
While in Laodicea:
- He appears outside of the Body of Christ outside of each of us as individuals.
- He knocks trying to get the attention of a sleepy and lackadaisical ERA of God’s people.
Notice this Scripture in Song of Solomon as it is very illuminating;
(Song of Sol 5:1) I am come into my garden, my sister, my spouse: I have gathered my myrrh with my spice; I have eaten my honeycomb with my honey; I have drunk my wine with my milk: eat, O friends; drink, yea, drink abundantly, O beloved.
(Song of Sol 5:2) I sleep, but my heart waketh: it is the voice of my beloved that knocketh, saying, Open to me, my sister, my love, my dove, my undefiled: for my head is filled with dew, and my locks with the drops of the night.
(Song of Sol 5:3) I have put off my coat; how shall I put it on? I have washed my feet; how shall I defile them?
(Song of Sol 5:4) My beloved put in his hand by the hole of the door, and my bowels were moved for him.
(Song of Sol 5:5) I rose up to open to my beloved; and my hands dropped with myrrh, and my fingers with sweet smelling myrrh, upon the handles of the lock.
(Song of Sol 5:6) I opened to my beloved; but my beloved had withdrawn himself, and was gone: my soul failed when he spake: I sought him, but I could not find him; I called him, but he gave me no answer.
(Song of Sol 5:7) The watchmen that went about the city found me, they smote me, they wounded me; the keepers of the walls took away my veil from me.
This shows prophetically what Christ is doing in this Laodicean ERA of the church and the fact that there is a urgency attached to it. If we do not rise up in time we may well miss Christ. But is this talking about the Resurrection? No not at all.
Notice that in the earlier ERA of the church it appears that Christ was reaching out to the world, especially those of the tribes of Israel. those nations of the earth that have bee formed by the individual tribes of the nation of Israel as they were filtered through the nations. the US and Britain being the primary nations among ten brother nations. Christ was giving these nation a chance to repent and avoid or at least put off the terrible time of trial that is going to come on all the earth. It was an effort by Christ to save them from having to go through the time of “Jacob’s Trouble such has never been nor ever will be again”. but this was for the physical nations of Israel.
Now we see Christ doing the same thing for Spiritual Israel. Now Christ at this specific time, just before the Great Tribulation begins is trying to SAVE as many of HIS people, those who are part of the “Body of Christ” but are asleep and not able to see their condition. If they do not wake up in time they will have to go through the Great Tribulation the time of Jacob’s Trouble.
Mat 25:1-12 shows the parable of the 10 virgins. This is generally accepted to show that only half of those of the “body of Christ” who go through the Great Tribulation will save their Spiritual Lives. Christ is doing a great work with the individuals of His church to try and save them and wake them up.
God said that He would gather His people in the last days before Christ comes.
Eze 34:10 Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against the shepherds; and I will require my flock at their hand, and cause them to cease from feeding the flock; neither shall the shepherds feed themselves any more; for I will deliver my flock from their mouth, that they may not be meat for them.
Eze 34:11 For thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I, even I, will both search my sheep, and seek them out.
This is the Re-Gathering of the people of God that occurs at the 1335. Christ is asking His people to open the door to him by Zealously Repenting Rev. 3:19 so that He can come into them and begin to feed them what they need to be counted worthy to escape what is coming.
Luk_21:36 Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.
Brethren we have grown up in God’s Church actually we are God’s Church and we have been in it so long that nothing excites us about it any more. We have not only lost our first love but also our second and third love if you will. The Gospel of Christ that we used to be so excited about has lost it savor with us. We need urgently to get excited by the word of God again. We need to start practicing the living principles of the word ZEALOUSLY. If we do these things then God the Father can count us worthy to be gathered together to the place of Safety so that we might escape what is coming.
Christ is doing a special work just for us, to save as many of us as possible from the horrible death and destruction that is soon coming. You have little time, brethren. It takes time to get back on tract so start now while you have the time to change your selves so that you might be counted worthy.
by Raymond Mills