A REVELATION THAT HAS CAUSED MUCH MISUNDERSTANDING. DID THE FIRST RESURRECTION TRANSPIRE IN ONE, TWO OR THREE PHASES? YOU WILL BE SURPRISED TO LEARN THESE FACTS CONTAINED IN THIS ARTICLE. FACTS YOU MAY NEVER HAVE BEEN TAUGHT BUT INFORMATION YOUR BIBLE HAS ALWAYS CONTAINED.
For centuries man had no enlightenment unto the fact there was even one phase to a resurrection, let alone three. Many of you may disagree with me, but I ask the opportunity to bring my defense before you pass judgement. If you will allow me, I shall bring many men up for Testimony. Fear not, I shall call for my defense only learned men of the holy scripture. The first learned man I shall summon shall be none other than the tried and the tested Prophet of his hour. A man who, because of his great love and devotion for the Eternal God, was put to one of the severest test ever a human being was called upon to endure, yet his faith failed him not. A man whose wife, seeing the horrible condition her own husband endured, asked him to curse God and die – Yes, you know the prophet and patriarch that we shall first call in behalf of our defense.—JOB
FIRST KNOWLEDGE MAN WOULD LIVE AGAIN
How long before the hour that Job came on the scene had devoted men pondered the age old question, if a man die shall he live again? Job is the seer that investigated the mind of God coming up with this very small insight on a subject so vast that Almighty God would be using, as time went on, numbers of men to bring this great subject into the open. In Job’s day God allowed to the believers a mere Crinkle of revelation to open the darkened mind on the most hidden subject -The Mystery of man’s body after death.
As previously stated, Job was in a terrible state of existence, covered with cancerous sores and boils. His only comfort was the ash heap that he sat in daily. His friends had accused him of missing the will of God, for they could not possibly understand how anyone in such a ghastly condition could be in the perfect will of God. None, not even Job was aware that this was one of the severest trials man had ever endured, and he was keenly aware that if God did not soon undertake for him, he would not long endure in such a condition. Poor Job reached a critical point-already he had cursed the day it was announced that a man child was born. True, he cursed the day of his birth but Satan desired to cause him to curse the God who made the day. Of this, Job was never guilty, for with his lips, he never cursed God nor once did he blame God for the misfortune of losing all his children etc. Job is discussing many things with God such as what happens to man after he dies. He had witnessed many times the sap going down the trees and leaves dying but the following year it always seemed the trees came back to new life. What about man, God, if he dies will he ever live again? I can see him one day in his ash heap, covered with boils as the revelation strikes his predestinated soul and he cries with the voice of triumph. Though after my skin worms hath destroyed this body (of flesh) yet in my flesh shall I see God. How could this be? With one breath Job says the Skin worms, the Maggots will destroy his body after his life is over, yet, in almost the same breath he says- Yet in my flesh shall I see God. (Job 19:25-26) With all our knowledge today this might not mean much to you, but bear in mind, this is the first ray of hope given unto the dying human race. You say, what about Moses, didn’t he write the first five books of the Old Testament? True my friend, but Job had long ago left the scene of action and the Skin worms had by this time already fulfilled Job’s prophecy as to what they would do with his flesh. Job’s day is placed about the hour the Israelites went into Egypt, long before Moses was given any revelation, this would eliminate any possibility of Job being an Israelite, FOR THEY WERE ALL IN EGYPT, thus the Book of Job is the oldest writing of scripture in existence. And it was he who broke the first seal of revelation on the resurrection by proclaiming that his Redeemer lives) and that he shall stand at the latter day, though he was unaware of when the latter day would be, having lived and dial 1600 or 1700 years before the Redeemer came to this earth. Notice his other statement, “And after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh I shall see God. Yet in MY FLESH – that the skin worms had destroyed SHALL I SEE GOD. No explanation is given here as to what will happen to that destroyed flesh (or even the Soul). that enabled it to be in a condition presentable to be able to see God. But, excited Job could care less-he now has hope beyond the Grave that somewhere, at sometime in the future, IN HIS FLESH he shall see his Redeemer God. He does not hold all the unraveled mysteries concerning the Grave but he knows now somewhere the grave is going to be forced to release his Body. For it shall be in that Body he shall see his Redeemer long after the skin worms have destroyed it.. Many things could be observed from Job’s statement of revelation but we must pass on to our next witness for every scripture on this subject must be dealt with. Many hundreds, yes even perhaps over a thousand years drift by before God allows another man to probe His great mind for a nugget on the resurrection, but we who live in the closing of this seventh and final church age have what men of the past did not have. We have at our disposal all the revelation that God saw fit to reveal to mankind who not only probed His great mind on the subject of the resurrection yes, but on every subject. How fortunate we are, for Job certainly did not have David’s or Isaiah’s or Daniel’s, or even Christ’s, Paul’s or even John the Revelator, revelation on this first resurrection, nor did the other men who preceded the ones following them. Yes we are going to carefully examine each man’s testimony on this great subject, and from all Testimonial evidence gathered we shall present OUR DEFENSE THAT THERE IS NOT ONLY GOING TO BE ONE RESUR-RECTION FOR THE RIGHTEOUS, but through-out the long ages of time THERE WILL BE THREE SEPARATE CHAPTERS OR PHASES OF THIS FIRST RESURRECTION – each phase dealing with SEPARATE CLASSES, with each transpiring at a designated interval of time. (1) with the resurrection of the Old Testament saints, (2) the Bride saints, and (3) the Tribulation saints. Note, these resurrections were not at the same hour, but are referred to in scripture as the “first resurrection.” It will be totally impossible to prove such a fantastic statement until we have examined each testimony closely and then are willing to accept what the testimony of these trusted Holy Men with the Holy Writ has revealed unto our hearts.
Are you ready for the Second witness? Our second witness is also a prophet, for the word of the Lord in olden days comes only unto the prophet (Heb. I : I), and now this word of revelation comes to David the Prophet. Some may say, I thought David was a king- the Holy Ghost speaking through the apostle Peter called him also a prophet, (Acts 2:), as Peter related what David had spoken under the inspir-ation of the Spirit. Please bear in mind, NONE of these Old Testament men carried the revelation that either Paul or John the Revelator possessed on the resurrection. These Old Testament witnesses will be merely establishing the fact that at some distinct, appointed hour God is going to cause the dead to rise and live again. They know nothing about how it is to be accomplished or of there being any order to the resurrection as Paul the ‘ Apostle brings out in his writings to the church.
DAVID’S RESURRECTIONAL TESTIMONY Psalm 16:9-10
Why David’s flesh shall rest in I hope? No. We learn when David dies, he is not worried about his soul being left in Hell. Yes, that’s exactly his own words-he is no longer worried about having to stay in Hell forever after he dies. He now has a clearer promise that someday Job’s Redeemer will come and take him , out of Hell, and we know, according to scripture, after our redeemer had expired on the cross he went immediately into the heart of the .earth while his body lay undisturbed in Joseph’s Borrowed Tomb. Probably even before His body had been removed from the old rugged cross, He was fulfilling the Prophecy of David, HE SHALL NOT LEAVE MY SOUL IN HELL Psm. 16. In this prophecy of David’s we further learn that God will not suffer his Holy One, Christ, to see corruption the Holy One spoken of here was not David, but Christ the Blessed Redeemer, as explained by Peter on the day of Pentecost. Peter chose David’s unusual testimony as part of his opening Sermon when he began using his badge of authority (the keys to the Kingdom of Heaven) that had been given unto him by the God man Himself, (Matt. 16:). Here he is unlocking far more than a revelation to the 3000 souls who I gladly heard his words and were baptized – Peter also unlocked much . of that scaled up Prophecy given by the Prophet David in explaining to the public just who this Holy One was, whose body of flesh was not to see corruption. Peter, in explaining to the crowd how they too might receive, that power given unto them a brief time ago said, it was the work done in their hearts by THIS RESURRECTED CHRIST of whom David had prophesied concerning -so we are sure that Christ, while busy in the heart of the earth for those three days prior to his own resurrection, DID NOT LEAVE HIS FAITHFUL SERVANT DAVID THERE IN HELL, while he was witnessing to the departed souls who were sometime disobedient, during the day of Noah (1 Peter, 3:18-22). Christ’s Spirit was not in Hell preaching that souls might repent, believe, and have salvation, No! No! He was there witnessing to all those who His faithful ministers in their own hour had witnessed unto concerning a coming redeemer to save mankind from his sins.
TWO-FOLD PURPOSE FOR BEING IN HELL
(1) – To witness to the damned, no living soul knows what his testimony consists of.
(2) – He was there to lead out of captivity those Old Testament saints such as David who over 1000 years before had testified the Holy One would not leave his soul in Hell. Note his soul, (not his body), his body was not in Hell, it was resting in hope in the Sepulchre up near Jerusalem. Christ, unlocking the very door of Death, Hell, and the Grave, was enough of a witness to the damned in Hell that they should have believed the witnesses while they lived upon earth. Today only the lost and forever damned are being kept there until the second resurrection, the appointed hour lkII shall give up all her captive souls. (Rev. 20:14). (Luke 16:19-26) Explained the setting in Hell between the righteous and the wicked, the rich man lifted up his eyes being in much torment and Lazarus in Abraham’s bosom, or Paradise, being comforted and the great gulf that’s between them – kept them separated – our Lord took from Satan the Keys and released all captive souls held in Paradise on Lazarus’ side.. Whoever Lazarus represents he too was led out with David and the others, because Paradise was moved to glory. (II Cor. 12:12) (Eph. t 4:8-10). (Rev. 20:13) None of the righteous dead has ever been kept in Hell since Christ went into the heart of the earth, witnessed to the damned and released those righteous souls such as David and all the other Old Testament saints who died with their hope in that redeemer of Israel. (Note). What happened to their bodies at Christ’s resurrection shall be discussed and testified unto by the apostle Matthew much later. If this is not true we deny the testimony of the Apostle Paul to the Ephesus Church when he said Christ first descended into the lower parts of the earth and led captivity captive up on high -(Eph. 4:8-10). We deny also the statement of Christ to the dying thief on the cross. “TODAY THOU SHALT BE WITH ME IN PARADISE.” Notice, each writer is reassuring that there will be a time when God will move bodies from the crust of the earth, but none of them are able to place any order to the resurrection — they know not whether there will be one general resurrection when both the righteous and wicked will be resurrected together or not. It would appear that this might be the general belief UNTIL WE COME TO PAUL’S REVELATION ON THE SUBJECT. There we shall pick up fresh enlightenment and learn truly there is to be no general resurrection of the dead, but to our amazement we learn there will be AN ORDER to the resurrection, yet, even there Paul does not classify the Bride’s resurrection, in 1 Cor 15:20-58 as the first and ONLY RESURRECTION for all righteous dead.
Time moves slowly on until we come to our third man who investigated the mind of God and found out that DEAD MEN SHALL LIVE AGAIN, and that the dead would arise as His dead body AROSE to life again, Isaiah 26:19. Thy dead men shall live, together with my dead body shall they arise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in the dust; (Isaiah is speaking unto the Nation Israel) for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the EARTH SHALL CAST OUT THE DEAD. Here Isaiah places no interpretation upon it, he does not mention how, or when it shall come for them, only that somewhere the earth will belch out the dead. But notice, he is referring to his own body in this verse—how it will live again in the presence of the redeemer, spoken of by Job and David, Verse 20 deals with the Bride where he speaks concerning the rapture of the bride, “Come my people enter thou into thy chambers and shut the doors about thee, hide thyself as it were a little season till the INDIGNATION IS PAST. This indignation period IS NONE OTHER THAN THE GREAT TRIBULATION PERIOD which closes with the wrath, judgment and destruction from the presence of the Almighty. According to Paul’s revelation, the true Bride church of the living God is to be taken up sometime before those terrible 42 months (I Thess. 1:10) set in. Notice more of Isaiah’s revelation as he probed further the mind of Almighty God, Behold the Lord comes out of His place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity: the earth shall also disclose her blood and shall no more cover her slain. That is Isaiah’s revelation concerning the happenings around the hour of this Bride of Christ being caught away into glory.
FIRST INDICATION OF DISTINCTION BETWEEN THE TWO DEAD GROUPS
That distinction was disclosed by our 4th witness in the Scripture, though at no time did he disclose there would be any order placed upon the event. This rcvelated man truly is greatly concerned about the welfare of his people seeing they had now remained in Babylon for approximately 70 years. This Prophet is searching the mind of God with all his strength when an angel suddenly appears unto him with a message from the Throne showing that God had determined upon his people a prophetic 70 week period, each prophetic week consisting of 7 Jewish years each. A Jewish year consists of 360 days not 365 as on the Roman calendar. During that last prophetical week, spoken of as Jacob’s trouble ter. 30:7 (Dan. 9:27-12:1-4), Michael shall stand up for the troubled nation. For further details read Revelation chapter 12, a paralleling chapter that coincides with Dan. 12. Note Michael is recorded in both Dan. 12 and Rev. 12 as defend-ing Israel in her most serious hour of history just prior to the return of the Lord WITH His bride saints. It was during this conversation the angel disclosed something about the Resurrection that had never been revealed unto any mortal creature. Bear in mind, Daniel did not receive that entire revelation on the subject. We must never forget this is a continual revelation. John himself even touched on a part of this resurrection story which the Gentile’s apostle, (Paul), had not been permitted to see, so therefore you who would hastily build a doctrine around any one man’s revelation on the subject should beware of the danger when it is a continual revelation throughout the scriptures.
WHAT DID DANIEL LEARN NO MORTAL KNEW?
Our first statement shows a breakdown in the different classes of the two kinds of dead-RIGHTEOUS AND WICKED. Though he does not break it up in intervals it does begin to show that THE TWO CLASSES OF DEAD WILL EACH BE RESURRECTED FOR DIFFERENT PURPOSES. Dan. 12:2-The angel speaking of the last week of Israel’s prophecy says that every one of his people who are written in the book shall be delivered and according to John’s revelation there were to be 144,000 sealed, NOT TO RECEIVE the mark of the antiChrist on their forehead such as many of their own Israelite brothers would, (Rev. 7:) but they shall have the seal of the living God stamped upon their forehead. They would have the knowledge of who the Father of Israel is-Jesus of Nazareth (Isa. 9:6 ) Note, no where did Daniel leave the impression that the entire nation was to be delivered, only those who were written in the book. Shortly after the Antichrist breaks his covenant with Israel (Dan 9:27) and has released his excessive hatred against the Jews, MILLIONS OF JEWS SHALL DIE, Zechariah testifies to only a third part being brought through the antichrist’s fire of persecution. (Zech. 13:9) But all who are recorded in the Book will be delivered mainly through the preaching of the two prophets that are to arise in Israel shortly before he breaks his covenant with the Jews. Dan 12:2 states, and MANY (Note—not all) who shall be sleeping in the dust of the Earth shall AWAKE. When? During the same seasonal time element. Somewhere near to this event of the worst part of Jacob’s trouble. Somewhere before –his list 42 months sets in, when he shall run for his life. (The Great Tribulation hour). During that seasonal hour when God is dealing with Israel in their own home land, THERE SHALL BE A RESURRECTION OF THE DEAD. Here the angel i points out there shall be two categories of people in the ground to be dealt with. Some shall awake unto everlasting life, while the others shall come forth unto shame and everlasting contempt. Neither Job, David, nor Isaiah possessed this knowledge.
WHERE DENOMINATIONS GOT OFF THE TRACK
Many manuals of churches speak of THE GENERAL RESURRECTION. This is where so many of the Baptist and Presbyterians got off the track, by interpreting all the other scriptures on the subject in the light of that one told in Dan 12:2-3. IT WON’T WORK. I want to say this is not the major scripture that holds the key to the revelation of the rust resurrection. It is merely a great scripture that runs in continuity with the others on the subject, and must be dealt with accordingly. True, it was the greatest revelation up to that hour, far be it from being the Key Scripture holding the order of the resurrection. By placing Isaiah’s and Daniel’s prophecy together we learn sometime around that great period known as Jacob’s trouble or the Great Tribulation Period there is scheduled to be A RESURRECTION which will set in motion this scripture to be fulfilled. And when it is climaxed, it will have brought forth from the earth both the righteous and the wicked.
WILL THIS RESURRECTION SCHEDULED BE THE FIRST ONE SINCE CHRIST ROSE FROM THE DEAD?
The answer whether we accept it or not IS NO. According to the scriptures, there were many saints who rose from the dead at Christ’s own resurrection. Who were they? Many of them today are recorded in Faith’s Hall of Fame in Hebrews 11.
WHICH SAINTS AROSE AT CHRISTS RESURRECTION
For this exciting story we go to our New Testament. First allow me to teach briefly upon the 5th chapter of John. To learn just who is the Resurrection and the Life we study John 5: In order to receive a clear picture of the resurrection we must deal with every scripture. Note the words of Christ as he spoke one day John 5:25. Verily, verily, I say unto you, the hour is coming and NOW IS when the dead (spiritual) shall hear the voice of the Son of God and live. In this verse we must be careful to observe that the dead spoken of here has no reference to the dead IN THE GRAVES. For he says NOW (PRESENT TENSE) IS THE HOUR for the dead to hear His voice and live. This verse refers to the dead spoken of by Christ when he said let the DEAD bury the DEAD (Luke 9:60). Verse 25 carries no reference to the physical dead in the grave, but the following verses, especially verses 28 and 29 do. For as the Father hath life in Himself (as the great Eternal Spirit that fills all things is life). He has designated unto Christ, the God man, to HAVE LIFE IN THE VERY WORDS WHICH HE SPOKE and he who would hear those words with all his heart could live. Therefore, He was able to give life unto all those that heard Him. For as the Father hath life within Himself so hath He given unto the Son to have Life in Himself. Having all authority He executes judgement also because He is the son of Man.
THE SPOKEN WORD BRINGS FORTH THE DEAD
Notice now as we enter into verse 28 his remarks are addressed strictly to THE DEAD WHO ARE IN THE GRAVES. “Marvel not (don’t get confused I am about to make an important statement) The hour is coming (note here he did not say and NOW IS) in which ALL that are in the graves shall hear his voice and shall come forth, both saint and sinner. ALL SHALL RISE AT HIS COMMANDING VOICE. Just as that voice brought Lazarus from the dead, so every dead person within the grave comes forth when He is ready for them. They who have done good, shall come forth, UNTO THE RESURRECTION OF LIFE, and they who have done EVIL UNTO THE RESURRECTION OF DAMNATION. Here Christ never indicated that the two groups would be resurrected in one general resurrection, any more than He indicated that they who had done good would be resurrected on the bases of their own goodness. He is merely showing that when it is time to bring the dead up from the crust of the earth they will come forth at the commanding of His voice. These verses do teach us something no other portion of scripture has taught. The spiritual dead also upon the earth, in order to live, must hear His voice, and then He turns to His disciples saying, marvel not at this, the only way the dead in the earth’s crust shall ever be raised in their resurrection WILL BE AT MY VOICE. Now we have discovered what causes the dead to raise, HIS POWERFUL VOICE. Not one word has at that hour explained the order of the resurrection. We note that verse 29 is very similar to that of Daniel 12:2. If we read no further than these scriptures one would easily be persuaded that there will be one general time when the voice of Jesus will raise all the dead. Isn’t it strange that he who was the Resurrection and the Life did not explain it any further than what He did. Perhaps it was because they were unable to receive such strong meat. Thanks be unto God our Saviour who said how be it when He the Spirit of Truth is come, He will guide you into all truth. Through the mouths of the other apostles out in the church age, the spirit of truth continued that prophesied revelation through Paul and John. Christ could have told the entire story, or He could have permitted any one of the writers to have done so, but He simply did not choose to. What has been established up unto the ministry of Christ was-THERE WOULD BE A RESURRECTION. To some thinking it would be a general resurrection but our one key word found in John 5:29. Shall come forth, they that have done good unto the resurrection of life. Now he begins to speak of another group. They who have done evil unto the resurrection of damnation. Two categories of people are definitely mentioned here. Both groups connected by the conjunction “AND.” In both scripture verses of Daniel and John AND IS A CONJUNCTION that could easily mislead someone, causing them to think since the two events were within the same verse, merely connected by the conjunction and, that the time element of both was the same, NOT SO, there could be quite a time lapse involved in the two events though they do appear in the same verse.
EXAMPLES OF “AND” CONNECTING TWO SEPARATE DAYS
For examples of scriptures to clarify our point in using the conjunction and, first, notice Isaiah’s writing in reference to the ministry of Christ, saying in 61:1-2, the Spirit of the Lord is upon me because He hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek. He hath sent me to bind up the broken hearted, to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord AND THE DAY OF VENGEANCE UNTO OUR GOD. Immediately after Jesus completed his fast of 40 days he went unto the synagogue, took up the Scriptures and read Isaiah 61: 1-2 down to the part connected by the conjunction and, and THERE HE STOPPED, handed the book back saying, “This day hath the scriptures been fulfilled in your ears.” Why did He stop short of completing the verse? Because all that he read was fulfilled in the ears. The rest was for another hour. THE HOUR OF VENGEANCE WAS NOT THEN. That day of vengeance was another hour of time out in the future. The Spirit of the Lord was only upon Him to fulfill only the part of the verse which He read, held apart by the conjunction, and. The Spirit of the Lord will be upon Him greatly also in the day of vengeance. THAT HOUR WAS NOT THE DAY OF VENGEANCE, BUT A DAY OF GRACE, AND TRUTH. The two separate days, though they are mentioned within the same verse, were two separate spaces of time, separated by the conjunction and. JESUS AT THAT HOUR WAS ONLY FULFILLING THE VERSE PERTAINING TO THE ONE DAY. In order to fulfill Isaiah’s prophecy of 61:2 it would take Christ two separate appearances. That is the reason He did not complete the verse. The Spirit of God was not on Him for the day of vengeance, that day was not at His first appearance and doesn’t fulfill the day of vengeance. The next verses in Isaiah would clarify that completely. Oh, Hallelujah! At that hour Christ was proclaiming the acceptable day of the Lord, NOT THE DAY OF VENGEANCE, yet that day will come and he shall Nall that part also. Note ANOTHER USAGE OF THE CONJUNCTION AND, where it again separates a vast period of time and proven to be so by the angel of the Lord. Again the reader might think this time period to be the same, but THE ANGEL OF THE LORD KNEW BETTER. The last book of the Old Testament was Malachi who prophesied concerning the coming of the Spirit of Elijah, before that great and terrible day of the Lord, TO DO TWO THINGS, To turn the hearts of the fathers to the children AND THE HEARTS OF THE CHILDREN BACK TO THEIR FATHERS. Watch that AND once again. Praise God for Angels who know the meaning of the word of God, if they did not when they delivered a message to a human being they might say too much and convey the wrong message. For example, in Luke 1:17 an angel brings Zacharias, the priest, a message that he would soon father a son whose name would be called John. This son would go forth in the power and spirit of Elijah to TURN THE HEARTS OF THE FATHERS TO THE CHILDREN, that is as far into the verse as the angel quoted in Malachi. He only quoted the part up to the conjunction and, and there he stopped. Why did he not finish the verse and say, turn the hearts of the children back to the fathers?? Because he would have infringed on the power and spirit of Elijah to work in another man’s life, to fulfill the rest of the verse. Yet it would be the same spirit and power of Elijah doing both to fulfill the one verse in Malachi. It would be in a different hour that the other part of the verse in Mal. 4:6 was to be fulfilled, and the angel of the Lord knew this. Malachi is just another example of two separate times placed in one verse of Scripture connected by the conjunction “and.” But Thank God the angel knew where to stop in his quotation of this verse ELSE HE WOULD HAVE PLACED MORE ON JOHN’S SHOULDERS THAN HE HAD BEEN REQUIRED TO CARRY. The latter part of the work in Mal. 4:6, TURNING THE HEARTS OF THE CHILDREN BACK TO THE FATHERS is another work, in another hour, by the same spirit of Elijah, but on a different human being at the close of another age. The complete verse was not for John to fulfill, ONLY PART. This time the spirit of Elijah fulfilled the LATTER PART of the prophecy of Mal. 4:6 upon a Gentile Prophet for the Bride. Here was a revelated message preparing the way for the Lord to come for his Bride. This too was the ministry proclaimed by the angel of the Lord at the Ohio River in 1933 before the presence of hundreds. This prophet was none other than William Branham of Jeffersonville, Ind. You may say, show me William Branham’s name in the New Testament and I will believe he fulfilled the latter part of Mal. 4:6. Then I simply ask you to show me John the Baptist’s name anywhere within the Old Testament as the one who would forerun the first coming of Christ and carry the spirit of Elijah to fulfill that first part of Malachi 4:6. His name was not known until the angel of the Lord proclaimed it unto his father, though the scribes had looked for that spirit to come. No one had any idea who would carry that spirit. When you have shown me John’s name in the Old Testament as the carrier of the Spirit of Elijah, then I shall be more than happy to show you William Branham’s name in the New Testament. Although the disciples had been around John many times, they were not even aware that CHRIST’S COUSIN CARRIED THAT SPIRIT UNTIL MATT. 17:10-13. Time will not permit us to investigate other scriptures that join two separate occasions or events by the conjunction “and.” That should be more than sufficient to show you how TWO SEPARATE RESURRECTIONS can be in one verse, separated through a vast span of time and connected by the conjunction “and.”
BACK TO THE RESURRECTION
Throughout Christ’s statement concerning the resurrection, never once did he mention any order to this resurrection. This he left solely to the working of the Holy Spirit for the Gentile church, using Paul and John as agents in which to work through.
PAUL’S BRIDE RESURRECTION Turn now into the writings of Paul. See how the spirit provides the key scripture earring the revelation of the resurrection or the real meat on the subject. I COR. 15:20, Paul is the first man to take up an anointed pen and dedicate an entire chapter to the resurrection. Here Paul’s resurrection deals PRIMARILY WITH THE BRIDE’S RESURRECTION. Many of the Gentile believers had now fallen asleep in Christ and this fact had been quite disturbing to different churches under Paul’s administration. They had become greatly confused concerning the coming of Christ. Paul’s first and second epistle to the Thessalonians dealt solely around surroundings of the second coming of Christ, with the dead in Christ being raised from the Crust of the earth, rising to meet the living and together they were scheduled to meet the Lord in the air to ever be with Him. But it is not in this he describes at any length the resurrection or the order of it, showing that the first resurrection came in Phases-Chapters or events.
CHRISTS FIRST FRUITS: 1 COR. I5:20
Christ was THE FIRST FRUITS of them who slept (past tense) in the grave. His resurrection was the first—the first to break the earth with the new glorified body. His resurrection is according to the new order and He is the first fruits, else how could he be the WAVE OFFERING of Lev. 20:10-12, as administered by the High priest at the temple under the law. Each act administered by the Priest of old were only types and shadows. But I notice, the priest in Lev. 29 did not wave only ONE small stock of grain, but one complete bundle—many, many stocks. This is certainly the type of Christ first fruits and the entire bundle made up in type the Old Testament Resurrected saints.
Remember Paul stated Christ was the first fruits of THEM WHO SLEPT (past tense). Note: Who they were that slept when Christ became the first fruits. None but the old Testament saints. When was the first resurrection (phase) of the resurrection after Christ THE FIRST FRUITS arose? There could never be a resurrection of old Testament saints before the death and resurrection of Christ who became THE FIRST FRUITS. It was He alone who conquered death, hell, and the grave during His three days descent into the heart of the earth. Peter and Paul tell us of his witnessing to the disembodied spirits, disobedient during the days of Noah, etc. Yet at that same hour, according to Paul (Eph. 4:8-10), He was leading out disembodied spirits from the Paradise section of Hades or hell before He Himself became the first fruits of the resurrection.
THEY WHO SLEPT
Christ was soon to resurrect and bring with Him out of hell those who slept, all the Old Testament Saints who patiently, through the centuries, awaited with David (who knew the Holy One would not leave his soul in hell)
WHO ELSE WAS IN HELL? 1 SAM. 28:19-20
Saul, the first king was delivered also for remember how God permitted the witch of Endor to bring Samuel up from his RESTING PLACE to assure Saul who could no longer get God to speak to him through the living Prophets concerning his welfare and safety. Samuel, who was patiently awaiting the deliverance of his soul from hell told King Saul he would be THERE WITH HIM on tomorrow. ALL (not part) these Saints from the Old Testament Age were delivered from Paradise as Christ, who was to become the first fruits of them who slept, stopped inside Joseph tomb and picked up his body. (Meaning the Spirit of God re-entered that dead flesh) According to Matt. 27:52-53 many others CAME UP WITH HIM, even appearing unto many in the streets of the Holy City for what? TO WITNESS. There had been a fulfillment of the work of Christ in the heart of the earth where for centuries souls had been held captive by death, hell and the grave. These were a living testimony to the first resurrection ever to be performed after the resurrection of the first fruits Himself. (1 Cor. 15:20)
THE GLORIFIED CHRIST AND THOSE WHO FOLLOWED
Christ alone did not testify to the resurrection, He had all these witnesses with Him. They were the very evidence the dead had been disturbed. Whether or not Christ allowed all who He had released from their prison to BE BODIED, RESURRECTED and become witness of the resurrection after escaping from Hades IS NOT FULLY KNOWN, but according to the little light shed on the subject from Matt. 27:52-53 many of those disembodied Spirits picked up their bodies held in the grave yards, clothed themselves and went into the city and APPEARED unto many.
WERE THESE GLORIFIED BODIES?
Again the words, APPEARED UNTO MANY , would indicate tint they were capable of appearing even as Christ appeared unto his disciples many times. No doubt as Christ who was the first fruits to them who slept appeared unto a restricted few, the same was the segment of this group who arose after Him from the dead, and appeared unto many. These were appearing unto many testifying concerning that which the Prophets had prophesied concerning the Holy One had come to pass. What happened to THE BODIES of these Old Testaments saints who slept after they were appearing unto many over a given period of time? When they fulfilled their mission, did they shed their bodies on the streets of the city or did they return back to the graves and cover themselves with dirt… before going on to glory? (Eph. 4:8) What happened to those many bodies? Let me ask you this question, when Christ went to glory did He leave His body on the street or did he place it neatly back in Joseph’s borrowed tomb? The answer is no. It was A GLORIFIED BODY that could eat a meal, that could appear and disappear. It was a body that could be felt. As he instructed Thomas, even the very markings of the Cross still remained within that body. Unless these bodies also had been glorified, they would have been in such a ghastly condition IT WOULD HAVE LOOKED LIKE SOME HORROR SHOW BEING PUT ON. Unless that corruption had put on incorruption they would have been hideous to look upon.
After Three Days, What Happens to a Dead, Lifeless Body? Remember the testimony of Martha before Lazarus was resurrected from the dead? (John 11 :39) What body did Lazarus reappear in? Naturally he came forth in his same old carnal, corruptible body, for then Christ had not died nor arose in His incorruptible body, becoming the first fruits of them who slept. Had it remained in the grave, Christ’s natural body would have suffered corruption. (Acts 2:27), Lazarus, along with all the other dead raised throughout Christ ministry come forth from the dead in natural corruptible bodies. It would have been impossible for Christ Himself e to have been the first fruit from the dead. They themselves would have been the first fruits.
DID THOSE WHO LIVED AGAIN DIE TWICE?
Each one of these who were raised to life again during Christ’s e ministry entered back into life’s realm and somewhere faced death a second time. One might say, does not dying the second time break the scripture written in Hebrews stating it was appointed unto a man once to die after that the judgement? This scripture does not regulate the life of every individual to only one death. It is showing that man must die once. That every man HAS ONE APPOINTMENT WITH DEATH before the Judgment. Again, this would not apply unto those who are fortunate enough to be alive at the first phase of Christ second coming for his bride who are heard to say, Oh death, where is thy sting, Oh grave, where is thy victory? (I Cor. I 15:55-56) These Bride Christians would have fallen in this category of Hebrews 9:27. Had it not been for the Rapture taking place before death beckoned unto them. Back to those bodies of saints in Matt. 27. which arose from the dead. What eventually happened to them? Something had to happen to these bodies, were they raised corruptible or incorruptible? Flesh and blood can not enter into the Kingdom of God. But a glorified body could as illustrated by Christ who left the earth going into Glory Acts 1:9. Christ was the FIRST FRUITS OF THEM WHO SLEPT (I Cor. 15:20). Why would it be conscience in our mind that the dead Saints of the Old Testament would be any different, since their own bodies would have had to go through some process of glorification before being decent enough to appear into the city for witnesses? What kind of testimony to the resurrection could they have – been, appearing around in decomposed flesh? For truly the skin worms would have long ago begun their God GIVEN ASSIGNMENT of destroying the flesh. Naturally before their appearance could be presentable, God had to do something to that decomposed flesh-Else the dead witnessing to the living would have frightened them out of their wits. These are natural things that must be considered. There is a record concerning Lazarus who died and was reburied. Archaeologists have discovered his grave along with his two sisters in a cemetery upon the Mount of Olives. This cemetery was still used on into the second century by Christians. BUT NOT ONE WORD IN THE SCRIPTURES OR CHURCH HISTORY SHOWS A TRACE OF EVIDENCE AS TO WHAT HAPPENED TO THIS MULTITUDE WHO AROSE, WENT INTO THE CITY, AND WITNESSED. Seemly they vanished without a trace or clue as to what happened to their bodies.
PLACING THIS RESURRECTION
What was this great phenomenon of Matt. 27 — When many dead saints arose? Was this resurrection of the dead found in Matt. 27 of Old Testament Saints a PART OF THE FIRST RESURRECTION? It could be nothing else, THE FIRST RESURRECTION PRODUCED IN POWER ONLY BODIES OF DEAD SAINTS NOT SINNERS. Only the wicked came forth at the second resurrection. The scriptures states in Rev. 20:4 this second resurrection hath NO POWER. Rev. 20:13 says the sea gave up the dead which were in it, and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them. Note: where all this dead was cast. Death and hell were cast into the lake of fire — THIS IS THE SECOND DEATH. So these in Matt. 27 were Old Testament saints. NOT SINNERS — They have no place in the second resurrection. There are only 2 resurrections, one for the righteous, and one for the wicked. Let us state here ONLY BECAUSE THE SCRIPTURE IS SILENT ON THESE RESURRECTED BODIES OF Old Testament Saints who were delivered out of Paradise or Hades. Where the righteous were comforted until Christ could become the first fruits of all THEM WHO SLEPT.. ONLY BECAUSE THE SCRIPTURE IN SILENT DO WE SAY, that if for some reason Christ did not raise every dead body of the Old Testament Saints whom he delivered out of hell with David, HE WILL CERTAINLY RAISE ANY DEAD BODY of the saints left when He comes for His New Testament Bride Saints according to Paul’s Revelation in I Cor. 15:20-58. Because, Zech., looking down through the history of time saw Christ returning to earth. Zech Said he had ALL OF HIS SAINTS WITH HIM (Zech 14:5) Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied that the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints. (Jude 14-15)
MANY DOES NOT MEAN A FEW
The word MANY found in Matt. 27:52 may fool you. It may consist of more than you think. Examine this word found in Dan. 12:2 when it speaks of all the saints—Examine it again when it speaks in Matt. 8:11 MANY shall come from the east and west, north and south and sit down with Abraham, Issac, and Jacob in the kingdom of Heaven. Matt. 27:52 DOES NOT MEAN ONLY FEW BODIES WERE RAISED AND WITNESSED IN THE CITY EITHER.
Our belief is, as Christ loosed every Old Testament Saint in Hades, IT IS UNLIKELY HE PERFORMED ONLY HALF AN OLD TESTAMENT RESURRECTION, anymore than He will perform only half a New Testament Resurrection of the saints when He comes for them in the Clouds of Glory. Remember only the first resurrection carries any transformation power (Rev. 20: 4-5). When we complete this teaching on the Resurrection through the book of Revelations it will be well determined that no matter how many times Christ has called the dead from the graves after His own resurrection until the dreaded second resurrection occurring at the close of the millennium reign, every phase of this first resurrection, every event of it, SHALL BE CALLED THE FIRST RESURRECTION IN THE SCRIPTURES. — Yet the second resurrection comes in only ONE PHASE, delivering all the wicked at once. The first resurrection hath power, but the second hath no power and John the revelator said, “…blessed and holy is he who HATH PART in the first resurrection.” – (Rev. 20:4)
FIRST RESURRECTION WILL PRODUCE ONLY SAINTS
We are now witnessing in Matt. 27:52 a resurrection that HATH POWER hence this has to be a part of the first resurrection for the Scriptures only speak of two resurrections. Yet we are showing the first resurrection of Saints come in three parts. — while the second resurrection comes in only one. If all these saints who went into the cities and witnessed, after finishing their job, returned to the grave yarc and continued to sleep, when ever they would be resurrected, the very fact they are called saints indicate when resurrected again it would have to be in THE RESURRECTION OF POWER, which alone the first resurrection. For Zech. saw the Lord returning to earth with not part of his saints, but ALL his Saints. This would include both old and new Testament Saints. Important (THE O.T. SAINTS ARE NOT BRIDE OF CHRIST SAINTS) PHASE II — 1ST RESURRECTION
What about the resurrection of New Testament Bride Saints performed shortly before Christ return to earth WITH his bride? This resurrection spoken of by Paul in 1 Cor. 15: 20-58 is primarily for the resurrection of His bride saints, throughout the Seven Church Ages when He was busy working among the Gentiles to receive a people called by His name (His bride) (Acts. 15:14) Only a tiny percentage will be raptured without seeing death. 1 Cor. 15:20-58 tells of that bride resurrection of N.T. Saints which hath POWER to change our bodies liken unto His glorious resurrected body. (1. John 3:2) Before the second resurrection for the wicked can occur there must be the removal from the earth of all bodies of saints whether Old or New Testament, because there is no power within that second resurrection. All the damned throughout all ages since Adam will appear at THIS ONE EVENT referred to as the second resurrection. Now considering that the resurrection, occurring shortly before the second coming of Christ FOR his bride saints, IS THE FIRST AND ONLY PHASE OF THE FIRST RESURRECTION.
what will you call the resurrection of the dead tribulation saints who are to be resurrected in Rev. 20:4? Seeing you have already used up your first resurrection in I Cor. 15:20-58 and only the first resurrection hath any power, the second resurrection is strictly for the eternal damned, and your tribulation saints who were beheaded for the testimony of Christ found in Rev. 7:14 are those who came up through the great tribulation period and were given resurrected bodies in Rev. 20:4 — Where are you going to place them? God never promised His Bride saints they would be beheaded during the great tribulation period, but she was promised just the opposite — that she would be spared the wrath of God, 1 Thes. 1:10. What resurrection is this called, if I Cor. 15:20-58 IS ALL OF THE FIRST RESURRECTION? That is exactly what that tribulation is — THE WRATH OF GOD.
BRIDE – TARES -FOOLISH VIRGINS
There is a Bride of Christ who is resurrected in I Cor. 15:20 and I Thess. 4:14-18 and there is what is known in the world as the carnal church which is TARES FOR THE BURNING PEOPLE BORN OF THE WRONG DOCTRINE, Matt. 13:24-30. In that body (churchl) will be many foolish virgins who shall become ve wise during that dark hour of Tribulation and shall each one seal their own life, spilling their blood along with their Jewish neighbor. These people, made up of the Gentiles, are referred to as the foolish virgins who did not have the needed oil in Matt. 25:1-13, to make the rapture. THEY CANNOT BE THE BRIDE. Their opportunity will come only as they give their life during the dark tribulation period when the antichrist arises in an attempt to annihilate the Jewish race. Those poor foolish virgins who were attempting to receive oil when Christ came missed the rapture, but will pay the supreme price with their life. QUESTION—WHEN WILL THEY BE RESURRECTED IF THE BRIDE RESURRECTION ( I COR. 15) WAS THE FIRST AND ONLY PHASE OF THE FIRST RESURRECTION? This rapture of the bride has already passed them by (Matt. 25:9-13) It is evident they missed the rapture of the bride saints and the second resurrection hath no power. Caught in the middle, they must have a resurrection, but which shall they be raised up in? Shall these slain tribulation saints lay until the thousand year reign is finished and come forth with the wicked dead of all ages, seeing the second death or Resurrection hath no power? Remember, the Bible teaches the second resurrection is a resurrection of the wicked dead only. Since the scripture teaches these tribulation saints will reign with Christ in a body for 1000 years, though not as a Bride, they too must have a resurrection. The answer is simple, THERE IS THREE PHASES TO THE FIRST RESURRECTION) ONE PHASE, having power took out the Old Testament saints when Christ became first fruits at His own resurrection – THE SECOND PHASE is calling up the bodies of the New Testament saints for His Bride before the second coming, and THE THIRD PHASE, STILL IN THE FIRST RESURRECTION, is the resurrection of the Tribulation saints when He returns to earth to begin the thousand year reign of Christ, ELSE HOW CAN THEY REIGN IN HIS EARTHLY KINGDOM fulfilling their respective positions on earth, Rev. 20:4.
THE TERM FIRST RESURRECTION NEVER MENTIONED UNTIL REV. 20:4
Shocking but true! Never once in all the statements given by Christ dealing with the resurrection did He indicate there would be ANY ORDER within the First Resurrection. As a matter of fact never once did he make reference to the term of a first resurrection. THE MENTIONING OF THE TERM FIRST RESURRECTION COMES FROM THE APOSTLE JOHN ONLY, Rev. 20:4. Paul spent an entire chapter on the resurrection of Bride christians, BUT NEVER ONCE CALLED IT A FIRST RESURRECTION. HE AND HE ALONE SPOKE OF AN ORDER TO THAT FIRST RESURRECTION.
Christ who was the Resurrection and the Life could have explained it in detail but He saved that for the Spirit speaking through Paul and John.
PAUL’S REVELATION —I COR. 15:20-58
Paul’s revelation deals primarily with the resurrection of the Bride at the closing of the Gentile Church age at the SOUNDING THE LAST TRUMPET MESSENGER. (I Cor. 15:52) Paul states that in Adam all die, that is, we of this human race have inherited that death penalty and each of us, regardless of our religious or non-religious beliefs, must die, but in Christ shall all be made alive. All shall be made alive, refers to both saint and sinner, though the sinner is not raised up for salvation, but He who is the Christ, the Resurrection and Life, will even cause the wicked dead to live, states Rev. 20:4, and THE REST OF THE DEAD LIVED NOT again until the 1000 years were fulfilled, meaning made alive for the Second resurrection when all the unsaved dead from Adam will be made alive for their judgment and punishment in the Lake of Fire. Definitely through Christ all shall be made alive, both sinner and saint, in one resurrection or the other. Here Paul establishes Christ is that resurrection power of both sinner and saint for all shall be made alive through Him, John 5:28-29, EVERY MAN IN HIS OWN ORDER. We learn that man cannot resurrect until his order comes up definitely. EVERY MAN SHALL BE MADE ALIVE IN HIS OWN ORDER, 1 Cor. 15:23. This shows us God through His resurrection power will bring the dead forth in some Kind of order. Here it is fully established. Every man will not be made alive at the same time, but MUST AWAIT HIS ORDER of being made alive.
Next, Paul establishes Christ was the first fruits of the Resurrection. Afterward they that are Christ’s at His coming. Please bear in mind, though this second coming of Christ sounds as though it would be only one event, scripture is clear to point out this is to be two separate events divided by a period of time. Both events are called the Second Coming of Christ—First Event, Christ comes FOR His Saints—Second Event Christ comes WITH His Saints.
The First Phase of Second Coming deals only with Christ appearing in the clouds of glory to resurrect His Bride and snatch away the few living saints who make up His true Bride Church. By far the greater percentage of the Bride will be already asleep in Jesus when He comes, I Thes. 4:13-18. Note; concerning the resurrection, Pamul’s revelation is also a limited revelation, limited only to first phase of the Second Coming of Christ for His Bride—he only sees the Bride saints being resurrected and caught up with the living to meet the Lord in the air where we shall ever be with the Lord. Here PAUL’S REVELATION ENDS. He saw nothing concerning the tribulation saints being resurrected. John the Revelator is the only one who sees that beautiful Bride of Christ composed of the dead Bride saints and the living who were caught away at the first phase of that second coming, going to the marriage supper, mounting white horses, now they return to earth with Christ her husband completing the second phase of the second coming. Paul never saw that much of the revelation. John holds something that no man’s eye has ever before seen.
Paul said Christ having raised from the dead, had become the first fruits of them THAT SLEEP. In Adam all had died, but in Christ shall all be made alive. EVERY MAN WILL BE MADE ALIVE IN HIS OWN ORDER, Christ the first fruits, after that they that are Christ’s at HIS COMING. His coming is two-fold. Did you know the scriptures teach there will be dead saints (bodies) raised at both advents of Christ? When the Second Advent is completed all the righteous dead will have been raised from the crust of the earth—the Tribulation will have run its course and produced another group of dead saints. Everyone except the wicked dead of all ages will have been resurrected, thus fulfilling Paul’s statement that Christ will receive His righteous saints AT HIS COMING (first and second phase). Remember when the Bride went to be with Christ at the First Advent of the Second Coming, none of the righteous dead remained in the earth’s crust at that hour, but shortly after the Bride went to be with her Lord, the dreaded Tribulation period began in full force. That 42 months period—wherein the foolish virgins found in Matt. 25 who did not have the needed supply of oil in their vessels were forced to seal their own testimony with their blood when the Image of the Beast has brought about a boycott where you can neither buy or sell without the Mark of the Beast. It was that dreaded Image of the Beast that caused a boycott to be brought into being. THE IMAGE IN THAT HOUR WILL BE NONE OTHER THAN THE WORLD COUNCIL OF CHURCHES. In that hour of darkness there will be multitudes slaughtered who shall not yield, both Jew and Gentile (Gentile making up the foolish virgins). Multitudes alive today shall be forced into it.
THE IMAGE OF THE BEAST
Note John’s revelation concerning this group of Tribulation saints who were beheaded for refusing the mark of the beast or worship his image, Rev. 20:4. Here is the key that unlocks the tribulation. No where in the pages of history does that image appear. In no hour before the tribulation does the beast image appear. It never appeared during the dark ages although 68,000,000 people were slaughtered. We only see it coming on the scene today, but it is not yet in force. Through the Ecumenical Move the image receiving its life. It will live and be the most detrimental to believers in that dark hour. Do you want to see what the World Council of Churches will become one day? Turn to Rev. 13:15-18, Some of you can’t believe that I know, but nevertheless it is true and soon you shall know it first hand. There is your image giving power to the beast causing all to receive His mark. The foolish virgins who missed the rapture of the church only a short time before this, see the handwriting on the wall for them, realizing the message of the Bride before she left concerning this worst stage of the World Council of Churches when it shall cause that dreaded boycott of no buying and selling save the mark. This people shall be beheaded who during the dark tribulation 42 month period did not receive the mark of the beast nor worshipped the Image – (World Council of Churches). Having been severely tested these shall also reign with Christ and His Bride who have just returned to earth and have taken up their positions of judgement for the thousand year reign. The scriptures state that these who did not worship the beast nor his image lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years also, but the REST OF THE DEAD (Rev. 20:4) lived not again until the thousand years were up. This indicated that there were some dead, some who were killed during that tribulation, then at His second coming to earth were made alive and the rest of the dead lived again until 1000 years had expired.
JUDGMENTS OF THE RIGHTEOUS DEAD
Rev. 11:18 The second phase of the second coming of Christ among other things will be a time when the dead should be judged and rewards given unto the servants the prophets and to the saints and all them who fear His name, small and great. What a time this second phase of Christ will be as He returns with His wife, giving her positions and throne dominions over the earth, Rev. 20:4.
Note here, John said in Rev. 20:5, THE REST OF THE DEAD lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This indicates there were some dead who lived again at the beginning of the thousand year reign. These were none other than those beheaded tribulation saints who were resurrected at His second coming, who did not waile Image nor receive the mark of the beast. Remember, that image only appears in power during the dark tribulation. Sometime before, the Bride went to the marriage supper with Christ-these missed that great calling, Matt. 25:1-13.
The Bride now has returned and it is time for the dead to be judged. The judging of the dead can only be in some phase of the First Resurrection because the Second Resurrection having no power will not occur until the thousand year reign expires. This completely eliminates that group being in the Second Resurrection. The wicked will be raised and judged one thousand years later according to Rev. 20:5.
Which dead is being judged and rewarded at the second coming? Rev. 20:4 plainly tells the answer—those who were beheaded during the tribulation period of Rev. 7:14-16. They worshipped not the beast or his image. This group of dead was granted life in His millenium reign.
They shall be in that Millennium with Christ and His Bride though they cannot be the Bride. The Bride, the highest calling in Christ, was taken away at the first Advent of the Second Coming when there was a resurrection of the dead, nevertheless, these are given some lower position in the kingdom.
Now if there is only one order or phase or chapter to this first resurrection, what on earth is John the Revelator referring to when he refers TO THIS RESURRECTION OF DEAD SAINTS who were beheaded because they refused to bow to the mark of the beast and HIS IMAGE. Bear in mind that image does not do its dirty work until sometime during that great tribulation period. What is John referring to when he calls the dead saints (Rev. 20:4-Rev. 11:18) coming forth at the beginning of the millenium saying there WASN’T GOING TO BE ANY MORE OF THE DEAD RAISED UNTIL THE THOUSAND YEARS WERE COMPLETED. Then he said, “blessed and holy is he WHO HATH (past tense) PART IN THE FIRST RESURRECTION upon which the second hath no power.
Believe it or not, these beheaded saints who were resurrected, who were slain during the tribulation period after His coming for His Bride at the first phase of His coming, came forth in a phase or chapter of the First Resurrection. NO WHERE IN SCRIPTURE HAD THE WORDS FIRST RESURRECTION! BEEN USED UNTIL WE ARRIVED HERE IN REV. 20:4. John said there will be no I more dead to live or be raised up now after Rev. 20:4, until the second resurrection which hath no power will be brought forth, Rev. 20:6-14, then the rest of the dead will live thus fulfilling Paul’s statement, “all in Christ shall be made alive.” So, my friends we can say that when Christ arose from the dead to become the first fruits of them who slept. All who slept at that hour were the Old Testament saints, whose souls had not been left in hell and many of them who sleep in the graves arose for witness—that was the first phase of the First Resurrection (2) When Christ called the dead from the ground to make up the Body of Christ and change the living whose mortal bodies would put on immortality— that was the second phase of the First Resurrection, (3) When the beheaded souls who refuse the mark of the beast and his image during the great tribulation come forth to reign with Christ for the thousand years, this was none other than the third phase of the fast resurrection and John the Revelator summed it all up by saying, Blessed and Holy is he who hath part in the first resurrection which came in three parts or three phases. It is the only resurrection that hath power and we note that in all three phases of that first resurrection there was a supernatural transformation within the flesh body of each saint, proving they all were a part of that righteous resurrection which God completed in three parts, chapters or phases but the second resurrection where the rest of the dead lived not for the thousand years had no power and was in one phase, Rev. 20:4-6.
WHY A SECOND RESURRECTION Rev. 20:11-15
God will cause to come from this earth, through the second resurrection, every trace of sin and death before He ushers in His Eternal age of life. When the thousand years have expired and He calls for the wicked dead of all ages, and judges them in the Great White Throne Judgment this completely erases every trace of sin that started in man’s Garden of Eden. The wicked of all ages will be cast into the lake of rue to erase all sin upon this earth and now He makes all things new, Isaiah 65:17.
GOD HAS ALWAYS PERFORMED HIS WORK IN THREES
Why should it seem so strange that Almighty God would redeem all the righteous dead through a three phase or threefold resurrection calling it all the First Resurrection. His redemptive work has been in threefold measures yet they are one-Father, Word and Holy Ghost, these three are one, I John 5:7. God is in three offices yet only One God. There is only one plan of salvation but it is in three works called justification, sanctification and baptism of the Holy Ghost. The three basic elements that make one body are carbon, oxygen, and hydrogen. Man is one yet he is body, soul and spirit. On this earth God placed three forms of life, plant, animal and mineral. All the way through God’s program we find Him working in that number three to perfect in One.
WHY THINK IT STRANGE THAT HE WOULD REDEEM ALL THE RIGHTEOUS BODIES IN A, THREE-FOLD MANNER AND CALL IT ALL THE FIRST RESURRECTION?
In the next issue we discuss the King on the Throne of His Glory and what this kingdom shall produce. How many separate groups shall be in it and what part will each play in the kingdom? Are there babies born in the millenium? Who does Satan deceive at the end of the reign? If only sinners are resurrected for the second death and sent to the lake of fire, why is the book of life opened at the Great White Throne judgment.