Easter Twist You’ve Never Heard Before

This post was written by Pete

Easter's Holy Week

I know many of us would say that Easter’s Holy Week is important because it signifies the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus. Yes, that is all true, but many individuals do not fully understand the grand magnitude or huge significance of Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection has for their own lives now. When we believe in Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection, most of us understand that if we put our trust and faith in him and repent of our sins, that the opportunity for eternal life is available to us. That alone is huge, but how many of us fully understand that we can also be completely free from the world’s standards of living? How many of us fully understand that at the time of our conversion we were given the key to have access the Garden of Eden again? In order for us to fully understand this, I would like to take us on a short journey and start from the beginning before God created the earth. If you stay with me through to the end, you will see the grand magnitude of Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection in a much clearer and deeper way than you had before.

My disclaimer here before we dive into this is that I will take us deeper into Gods word and point out things that might come across as strange for some of you. The reason for this is because many of us have never really noticed certain contextual dynamics that are written throughout the Bible. This was true for me when I began diving deeper and I would guess for you as well. I will share just enough in order to see the big picture and not go too deep into it or this blog will become a book!! This blog will take about 20 minutes to read, maybe not that long. My hope is that you read through this the first time through or you can bookmark where you leave off so that you can read it at your convenience. My goal is to open your eyes to Gods truth so that His joy invades your heart. I hope to spur you on to dive deeper into Gods word, in which His truth can deliver us all from the bondage that the world system puts on us without every knowing it. We will uncover 3 grand sins that Jesus had to die for so that the earth can be redeemed. Those are Adams sin, Watchers Sin and the sin of Babel. Enjoy!!

The Creation of the Divine

Let’s begin before the Garden of Eden was created in Job 38: 4-7 God is responding to Job and He made this statement, “4 Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell me, if you have understanding 5 Who determined its measurements—surely you know! Or who stretched the line upon it? 6 On what were its bases sunk, or who laid its cornerstone,7 when the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy?”

Verse 7 is what I want us to focus in on for the moment. Just who are the morning stars and the sons of God and how is this relevant to Easter Holy week? This is where our journey must begin in order to fully understand the grand picture of it all. I promise towards the end it will all make sense.  For the use of time, the morning stars and sons of God, are higher ranking angels. That word “God” here is translated as “Elohim”. We will see the term “sons of God” used many times throughout the Bible and we will draw upon some of those verses in our journey here. The bottom line in what I want us to see here in Job is that God had divine company before he created the earth.

The next verses that I want us to look at is Psalms 82:1 “God has taken his place in the divine council; in the midst of the gods he holds judgment:” Again, here we see the word “God” used two times and both of these times it is translated as “Elohim”. We know the first “Elohim” must be Yahweh and the second “Elohim” is some other god. Keep in mind anytime in Hebrew you see the “IM” on the end of any word, it is plural for more than one. So is there more than one God? Because of time, no, but yes. There is only one creator of all things, God, Yahweh and there are demi-gods that are a divine creation that oversee things that Yahweh puts them in charge over. This is not what I want us to take from this verse, but I want us to notice that there is a divine council. God, Yahweh is in constant communication with His council.

The Garden of Eden

Ok, now let’s start to turn our attention towards the Garden of Eden. In Gen 1:1-25, God creates the heaven and the earth and He said it was good. But in verse 26, He says something unusual; He says “Let us make man[h] in OUR image, after our likeness.” Who is our? Many people have said that this is the Trinity, but how could that be if the trinity is one? He would not have to say “our” would he? This again is referring to the council of God in His heavenly realm. I don’t have time in this blog to talk about what the image of God is here, but the point again that I am trying to make here is that there is a divine council involved with God before man was created.

It states in Genesis 2:8 “The Lord God planted a garden in Eden, in the east, and there he put the man whom he had formed.” Keep in mind that He created all of the earth! Everything we experience today, God created, but He separated a special place called Eden. This is where that His heavenly council and man could have fellowship together. This is where as it says in Genesis 3:8 “man experienced the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day.” It was in the garden of Eden that all of creation had fellowship together, both divine and humankind. Gods plan from the beginning of time was to have fellowship with His creation and be our God. Genesis 3:22 says “we were to live forever with Him”, God never planned for us to be separated from Him.

Adams Sin 

We were never created to experience sin; that was never Gods plan from the beginning of time. His love for His creation both divine and humankind, gave us the opportunity to love Him back. Satan, as it says in Isaiah 14, wanted to be like the most High God and he made a choice to rebel against a loving God. He and his followers were cast down to earth and in 2 Cor 4:4, Paul says he “is the god of this world”. As we all know how the fall of man happened. Satan tempted Eve with truth. He simply shared with her that there is more to the story, if she wanted to know more, she would have to go against what God told her was not the very best thing to do. Satan enticed her and Adam that becoming “like” god in knowing good and evil was ok and would surely not kill them. Ultimately, that was not the case, what they did not understand is that God is holy, he’s the complete opposite of sin. He cannot associate with sin and their fellowship with Him in the Garden of Eden was now over.

The perfect creation that God made for humankind and His divine council on earth as He originally intended it to be is now in a free fall of destruction. Romans 8:22 says that “Gods whole creation has been groaning as in pains of child birth until present time”. Sin has caused the earth to slowly deteriorate and one day it will be no more. God also put a curse on man and Satan as it states in Genesis 3:15 “I will cause hostility between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring. He will strike[a] your head, and you will strike his heel.” God has now connected both man and the divine evil together. Man’s heart as it says in Jeremiah 17:9 “is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked, no man can know it.” Satan is now the god of this world and humankind has regularly followed Satan’s ways and is destined for death unless something happens.

Before Jesus, separation from God is all mankind knows. Unless God initiates contact with man, man will never be able to experience the true living Gods presence. Most of us know our Bible and know that God has constantly been pursuing man ever since the beginning of time. Gods plan for fellowship with His creation has never changed and it all leads us to Jesus and His resurrection. Romans 5:18-19 “So then as through one transgression there resulted condemnation to all men, even so through one act of righteousness there resulted justification of life to all men. For as through the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous.” Jesus act of obedience on the cross now gives us access to Gods presence. But there is more, we need to dig deeper to fully see this grand picture in front of us.

Divine Watchers Sin

In Genesis 6:5, it says “Yahweh saw that the evil of humankind was great upon the earth, and every inclination of the thoughts of their hearts were always only evil”. One of the main reasons for this sin was because His divine Watchers taught humankind to sin against God, who? (I will explain later) The Watchers were teaching humankind things like technology, astronomy, how to build weapons, etc. All of these are not bad if they were being taught to Glorify God, but that is not what was happening. These rebellious Watchers were doing their best to teach the people how to survive without the need of God (I will tie this in more towards the end). Not only were they teaching incorrectly, but they were doing something even worse.

In Genesis 6:1-4 it says “When man began to multiply on the face of the land and daughters were born to them, 2 the sons of God saw that the daughters of man were attractive. And they took as their wives any they chose. 3 Then the Lord said, “My Spirit shall not abide in[a] man forever, for he is flesh: his days shall be 120 years.” 4 The Nephilim[b] were on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of man and they bore children to them. These were the mighty men who were of old, the men of renown.” Wait what? Sons of God came in to the daughters of man and they bore them children, the Nephilim aka giants!? Is this saying what I think its saying? The divine sons of God translated (Elohim) had sex with humankind? Yes! The divine took on human form and dwelt among the humankind in the flesh. We know from scripture that Angels can take on human form (Hebrews 13:2). So how is this relevant to the resurrection of Jesus? I will explain.

The above Bible passage has been debated for years by scholars and raises up more questions than we have time for in this blog.  I encourage you to study more on this on your own and I will give you some resources at the end that will explain all of this in much greater detail.  Let’s talk about who are the watchers, as I stated above we first find the name “watchers” In the book of Daniel chapter 4:17, these are the sons of God mentioned in Genesis 6. In the book of Enoch, there is a whole section about these “watchers”. Jude 5-7 and 2 Peter 2:1-10 both refer to the book of Enoch in describing these watchers and give context to Genesis 6:1-4. These watchers by sinning with mankind created the giants (Nephilim) also called Apkallus, which are spoken about all throughout the Old Testament.

The significance of this has to do with the divine order that God had in place for mankind. It was Gods original design for his human children to be servant rulers over the earth, under his authority, as his representatives, in the presence of his glory. Restoring the loss of the Edenic vision eventually involves creating a people known as Israel and giving them a King David, who is the template for the coming Messiah. The watchers responsibility was to be Gods eyes, watching over mankind, so there would be managed chaos. It was never for them to teach mankind corruptly and defile mankind as they did. The result of their sin was that God had to send the flood to restore order and reset the path that God was working together so that humankind and Gods divine can fellowship together again. What the watchers taught us in their rebellion against God is still with us today, we will see later why Jesus had to come to break us from this sin.

Tower of Babel Sin

There is another grand sin that took place that has to do with the importance of Jesus as well.  We find this sin in Gen 11:1-9 which is the story about the Tower of Babel. It says that the whole earth had one language and the same words. Nimrod, who was Noah’s great grandson, had established this region known as Ancient Mesopotamia in the land of Shinar. The sin comes in verse 4 “Come, let us build ourselves a city and a tower with its top in the heavens, and let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be dispersed over the face of the whole earth.” This occurs after the flood, which it showcases the vulnerability of man to fall for Satan’s temptation to worship themselves.  Remember from the beginning that God created man to worship Him and to have fellowship with Him; He never created man to elevate oneself above God. Gods promise by sending the rainbow was to never destroy the earth again by flood, so His only choice here was to remove His presence from all of mankind and establish a kingdom on earth unto Himself, Israel. Right after the tower of babel incident God called Abraham in Genesis 12:2 to be set apart as His chosen to bring about Gods divine plan that through his seed Gods nation will be established here on earth. Let’s dive deeper into the fall of the nations in the next paragraph.

So we see that in Genesis 11:5 God reveals to us that this is a big deal to him because it says that the Lord, Yahweh came down to earth to see this first hand. Many people do not realize that God, Yahweh, Aka Jesus, in human form, came down to the earth many times in person after the fall and before Jesus the Messiah came to the earth to redeem us. The result was from this visit that He and His council determined that having one language was not the very best for humankind. In Vs 7 it says “Come, let US go down and there confuse their language, so that they may not understand one another’s speech.” Did you notice the word “us”? God is one as it says in Duet 6:4 not 3 separate entities that some of us might have associated with this verse in the past as the Trinity. This could only be His council in which He desires to have involved in His decision making. The same goes with his humankind council, hence the importance of prayer and meditation. Gods divine and humankind have always been linked to work together. Prayer is a vital importance in our relationship with God; God listens to our heart and communicates with us His will. His divine creation carry out His plan He has for us and together we work in harmony with one another.  So how does this have to do with Jesus and resurrection? Well, because He has to ultimately reclaim all of the nations.

As I mentioned above, after the tower of Babel experience, God completely turned his back on mankind and began His divine plan of establishing Israel as His chosen nation. The world was now fully turned over to Satan and the sons of God now controlled the nations. We know this because of what we read in Deuteronomy 32:8-9 “When the Most High Yahweh gave to the nations their inheritance, when he divided mankind (Babel), he fixed the borders[a] of the peoples according to the number of the sons of God (Elohim Watchers).[b] 9 But the Lord’s portion is his people, Jacob (Aka Israel) his allotted heritage.” Do you remember in Mathew 4:1-11 when Satan was tempting Jesus and in verse 8 Satan said, “I will give you all the kingdoms of the world” and in verse 9 He says, “All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me”? Because God turned His back on the nations and cannot associate himself with sin these verses again show us that the world belonged to Satan. It wasn’t until Jesus died and rose again that the world ever had an opportunity to have fellowship with God unless they aligned themselves with Gods chosen nation.

Jesus the Redeemer

So what does all of this have to do with Jesus death, burial and resurrection? There has always been a single thread line that has been consistent throughout the Bible. That is that, God loves man, God pursues man, God cares for man, God has patience for man, God desires fellowship with man, God has a plan to redeem man, God never leaves man, God saves man. We celebrate Easter because there is no other God that can even compete with our God. All religions have a consistent thread since the beginning of their creation, which is of man having to please their god by demonstrating good works in order to receive Nirvana, aka salvation. The God of the Bible Yahweh has never given up on man, He has shown more patience, grace and mercy than anyone could have ever dreamed of showing. Man never has to find God, as other religions teach. Yahweh always pursues His creation and desires deep, intimate fellowship with them.

When Jesus was conceived by the Holy Spirit into Mary’s womb in Mathew 1:18, we see in this verse that God establishing the right way, (Holy) for the Divine to impregnate humankind. This very act addresses the sin that the watchers performed with humankind when they physically had sex with humankind. God had to restore order and this was His plan all along. He gave His prophets hints of this all throughout the Old Testament. Paul called this the “mysteries of God”. After Jesus’ resurrection, His disciples’ eyes were then opened to these truth and all the things they were taught started to make sense. Jesus did it this way so that Satan would not know what He was doing. If Satan knew Gods plan, then he would have never had Him killed in the first place. Remember throughout the old testament Jesus was on the scene in person, this was nothing new to Satan. Jesus was setting him up for his grand plan, His plan to redeem once again the whole world unto Himself.

In order to do this, God had to send His son Jesus to live out life here on the earth perfectly as He originally intended. Jesus had to live a Holy life, to cover the sin Adam chose to participate in, in the garden of Eden. God is holy and in order for mankind to have fellowship with God, we have to be holy. Without holiness we cannot enter His throne room. Jesus’ blood and resurrection reestablished oneness with the Father so that all man can now come into Gods presence. Mankind still has to make a choice to believe in Jesus and willingly surrender over their control to the Father. The difference being is in Jesus’s name, we are no longer separated from the Father or denied salvation because of our sin. Death (aka Satan) is defeated and victory over all sin is now attainable for us. In this world mankind has an evil heart and sin is prominent with man. With Jesus’ death and resurrection we are now given the Holy Spirit to live inside of us to help us learn all things, John 14:26, so that we can overcome our sin. Romans 8:12-13 “Therefore, brethren, we are debtors—not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.”

This very act also took back Satan’s dominion over the nations spiritually and has given Jesus full authority once again over the world. 1 John 3:8 “The one who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil’s work.” Before Jesus, we had no out when Satan tempted us, he would always win, but now with Jesus we can do what James 4:7 says and resist the devil by the power of the Holy Spirit living inside of us and Satan must flee. Satan no longer controls the nations and every time that someone gives their life to Jesus, Satan loses his ground. That’s why Jesus gave the command in Mathew 28:19 to go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Jesus was claiming ownership and Satan’s rule was now over to all those who believe in Him. Jesus is now King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Revelations 19:13,16 He is clothed in a robe dipped in blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God. . . . On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of Lords.

The New Garden of Eden

In Jesus we now have the key with access to the Father, to bask in His glory in the Garden of Eden once again. No, it’s not in a physical garden, but in a spiritual garden where He is fully in charge of our lives. He can now supply all of our needs here on earth; we are no longer responsible for our well-being. We are now allowed to have fellowship with Him every moment of every day. He is our God and we are His creation, we can now live our lives from Jesus victory. We can have freedom from the bondages of the world and no longer have to lean on the substances the world offers us to get us through our day. We can now lean on Jesus and His goodness to guide us and direct us. What Jesus did is so much more than just eternal life, its abundant life (John 10:10) here on earth. It’s not just abundant life for us but for our family, friends and every person that wants it. We have good news that this whole world needs to see lived out in our lives. People come to this good news because there is His goodness in you, we quenched that goodness when we don’t surrender our will and act like the world.

As followers of Jesus, it’s no longer about us in what we can do to obtain holiness and right standing with God. It’s now about what He has done and that we can do nothing in of our self, accept to believe in Him and rest in His presence. Easter is huge y’all!!!! I pray that each of us lays down our lives today and stop trying to be our own god and simply accept His free gift of salvation. Ephesians 2:8-9 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. Let’s press on and finish this race here on earth strong, for one day there will be a new heaven and a new earth, Rev 21:1, I can’t wait!

I’ve use many resources that you can find below listed for your convenience in my studies, but the best and the most easiest books to read on this subject are written by Michael S. Heiser who is an American Biblical Old Testament Scholar. His books Supernatural and Unseen Realm will help you out in uncovering greater contextual details found in the Bible.

I know that I could not go into more details in this blog and I also know that for some of you there might be more questions. Please feel free to leave a message and I will answer your question the best I can.

 

Resources:
  1. Amar Annus, “On the Origin of the Watchers: A Comparative Study of the Antediluvian Wisdom in Mesopotamian and Jewish Traditions,” Journal for the Study of the Pseudepigrapha 19.4 (2010): 277–320
  2. James C. Vanderkam and George W. E. Nickelsburg, 1 Enoch: The Hermeneia Translation (Fortress Press, 2012)
  3. James C. VanderKam, “1 Enoch, Enochic Motifs, and Enoch in Early Christian Literature,” in The Jewish Apocalyptic Heritage in Early Christianity; ed. James C. VanderKam and William Adler; Minneapolis: Fortress, 1996), 33–101
  4. Archie T. Wright, The Origin of Evil Spirits: The Reception of Genesis 6:1-4 in Early Jewish Literature, Revised Edition (Wissenschaftliche Untersuchungen zum Neuen Testament 198, second series; Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2013)
  5. Annette Yoshiko Reed, Fallen Angels and the History of Judaism and Christianity: The Reception of Enochic Literature (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005)
  6. James C. Vanderkam and George W. E. Nickelsburg, 1 Enoch: The Hermeneia Translation (Fortress Press, 2012)
  7. Benjamin Foster, Before The Muses: An Anthology Of Akkadian Literature
  8. Benjamin Foster, From Distant Days: Myths, Tales, and Poetry of Ancient Mesopotamia
  9. John Walton, The Lost World of Genesis One: Ancient Cosmology and the Origins Debate
  10. John Walton, Ancient Israelite Literature in its Cultural Context
  11. John Walton, The Lost World of Scripture: Ancient Literary Culture and Biblical Authority
  12. John Walton, Genesis 1 as Ancient Cosmology

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