Class Notes: 5/19/2021
Smyrna, the pivot for SPQR part 40
Phil 1:29; For it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ, not only to believe in Him, but also on behalf of Him to suffer,
Heb 9:27; NET And just as people are appointed once to die once and then to face judgment,
2Cor 4:1-18; Therefore, since we have this ministry, as we received mercy, we do not lose heart,
2 but we have renounced the things hidden because of shame, not walking in craftiness or adulterating the word of God, but by the manifestation of truth commending ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God.
3 And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing,
4 in whose case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.
5 For we do not preach ourselves but Christ Jesus as Lord, and ourselves as your bond-servants for Jesus' sake.
6 For God, who said, "Light shall shine out of darkness," is the One who has shone in our hearts to give the Light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.
7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves;
8 we are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing;
9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed;
10 always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body.
11 For we who live are constantly being delivered over to death for Jesus' sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh.
12 So death works in us, but life in you.
13 But having the same spirit of faith, according to what is written, "I believed, therefore I spoke," we also believe, therefore we also speak,
14 knowing that He who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus and will present us with you.
15 For all things are for your sakes, so that the grace which is spreading to more and more people may cause the giving of thanks to abound to the glory of God.
16 Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day.
17 For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison,
18 while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.
Psa 23:1-6; (NET) A psalm of David. The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
2 He takes me to lush pastures, he leads me to refreshing water.
3 He restores my strength. He leads me down the right paths for the sake of his reputation.
4 Even when I must walk through the darkest valley, I fear no danger, for you are with me; your rod and your staff reassure me.
5 You prepare a feast before me in plain sight of my enemies. You refresh my head with oil; my cup is completely full.
6 Surely your goodness and faithfulness will pursue me all my days, and I will live in the Lord's house for the rest of my life.
Heb 2:14-15; Therefore, since the children share in flesh and blood, He Himself likewise also partook of the same, that through death He might render powerless him who had the power of death, that is, the devil,
15 and might free those who through fear of death were subject to slavery all their lives.
In our study on Smyrna, the base of the pivot power for the first gentile client nation SPQR. We are in Rev 2:10; that starts with the mandate "not to fear what you are about to suffer"
Last time we noted that God uses suffering as a venue for the believer to apply Bible Doctrine under the ministry of God the Holy Spirit to prepare the believer for their transfer to heaven via physical death.
It was the persecuted Church that was sustaining the Roman Empire just as it was Jesus Christ who while he was on the cross dying for the sins of the world who was sustaining the universe.
Bible doctrine resident in the soul removes fear of death as well as fear of life. The believer living inside of God's power system is not afraid of torture and death. That means that death by martyrdom is never in vain.
This means that being martyred for the sake of Christ is the basis for the greatest of eternal rewards.
Before Constantine the Roman Empire was evangelized through dying testimony; after Constantine it was evangelized through living testimony.
Dying testimony just like living testimony requires that Bible doctrine be more real than anything else in life otherwise, when called upon to live or die for the Lord Jesus Christ, if He isn't real to you, you can't testify for God on the basis of divine viewpoint so you end up testifying for satan on the basis of human viewpoint.
Jesus Christ is not a reality to believers who neglect Bible doctrine because Jesus Christ is God's Word. John 1:1; John 17:17; John 14:15;
The success standards of satan's world must be replaced by the success standards of God's plan. The judgment seat of Christ will reveal that many people who have a comparatively modest station in life were the great ones as far as God's plan is concerned. 1Cor 1:23-31;
Only through Bible doctrine can God and His plan be more real than people, situations and pleasures. Beware that you do not compromise your principles with your arrogant ambition.
Beware that you do not run your life on the basis of human viewpoint, on the basis of rationalizing doctrine to fit your plans and desires in life.
If you do not watch your step and put doctrine first in your scale of values, and establish your priorities on the basis of doctrine first by having priorities related to residence and function in God's spiritual power system God is going to send on believers of that client nation a plague of special persecution. Out of that special persecution a different kind of Christian than we see today will be manufactured.
The divine viewpoint must override peer pressure, and arrogant ambition must be replaced by grace orientation from doctrinal perception. When that happens and you fulfill the principle of being faithful, even unto death and become a recipient of special super reward from God in heaven.
The ten special persecutions from Domitian to Diocletian made death a reality to millions of believers in the Roman Empire over that period of time. Believers living in the cosmic system when facing the threat of torture and death often renounced their faith in Christ.
This didn't mean they lost their salvation, they still had eternal salvation, they had merely temporarily saved their physical life by their act of cowardice.
Believers living in the God's spiritual power system when facing the same threat of torture and death were not afraid and departed from this life under the principle of dying grace.
But fee cosmic believer's fear of death became fear of life. This is what we see in our country at this time with the response to the CCP virus.
It took the persecution of the Church to give the perspective then for missionary function. In fact the missionary church sustained the Roman empire. So the Bible doctrine resident in the soul removes fear of death as well, of course, fear of life.
The believer living in the divine dynasphere is not afraid of torture and death, and their martyr deaths were not in vain. Before Constantine the Roman Empire was evangelized through the dying testimony of martyrs and after Constantine it was evangelized by the living testimony of mature believers.
Doctrine must be more real than anything else in life and the success standards of life must be replaced by the success standards of God's plan. Only through Bible doctrine can God and His plan be more real than people and their plans.
Ambition to excel above one's peers is a trap; it is designed to destroy both your happiness and your spiritual life by giving you either a superficial or a false scale of values. So beware that you do not compromise your own principles because of inordinate ambition. And beware that you do not run your life on the basis of human viewpoint and rationalize doctrine to fit your own ambitions.
If we do not watch our step then as believers and put doctrine first in our scale of values, and establish priorities related to residence and function in the divine dynasphere, God is going to send the believers of this nation a plague of special persecutions.
The believer with maximum doctrine in his soul cannot be corrupted by fear of death any more than he could be corrupted by fear of failure in life. If your goals are set and related to advance to maturity then you have nothing to fear in life and you have nothing to fear in dying or how the Lord may choose for you to depart from this life.
Divine viewpoint must override peer pressure. Arrogant ambition must be replaced by doctrinal viewpoint so that your motivation is in line with the plan of God.
Two people may arrive at the same point of achievement but the one who has false motivation is weak The one who has the correct doctrinal motivation in getting there will be very strong and will glorify the Lord in their advance.
The final phrase in Rev 2:10; starts out with the connective kai, translated "and." Followed by the future active indicative of the verb didomi, and it means "to give "and I will give."
The predictive future anticipates special blessing and reward at the judgment seat of Christ. The active voice: Jesus Christ as the prince ruler of the Church produces the action of the verb at the judgment seat of Christ.
Every believer receives their evaluation for what they did with logistical grace from the time of salvation to the time of their departure from this life via physical death or the exit resurrection.
Our Lord Jesus Christ from His omniscience does the evaluation. The indicative mood is declarative for the reality of eternal blessing and reward above and beyond the possession of a resurrection body for believers who advance to maturity.
Free volition is the issue in the angelic conflict. From salvation you are free to advance to maturity and you are free to fail, so that there will be great inequality in the perfect environment of heaven. Perfect environment always represents the function of freedom and therefore inequality is healthy because it indicates the use of our own free will to succeed or fail.
The dative singular indirect object from the personal pronoun su closes out our exegetical study of this verse. It is translated "to you." The dative of indirect object indicates the mature believers whose advance in God's spiritual power system results in getting great eternal blessing and reward above and beyond the resurrection body.
This is also a dative of advantage. Then we have the accusative singular direct object from the noun stefanos, that can be translated either crown or wreath. When used in its athletic connotation from the Hellenistic culture of the Roman Empire it is a wreath, but when used in its military connotation it has to do with special Roman decorations.
With this we have the descriptive genitive of the noun zoe, translated life. The crown of life is given to the believer who advances to maturity through living in God's spiritual power system by learning and applying Bible doctrine.
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