From “Feast of Tabernacles,” Chapter 14- Tabernacles – The Feast of His Appearing, continued
THE MOSES-ELIJAH COMPANY
The whole transfiguration scene is a beautiful picture of the power and coming of the Lord into the midst of His people in this glorious hour to create the Moses-Elijah ministry. Moses, and Elijah; because this is the day and hour when the old must give way to the new, when death is to be swallowed up of life, when Law must be fulfilled in Grace. And so Moses typifies the old order of Law and of death. Elijah speaks of the new order, of grace and of life. This is the hour known as the “ends of the ages” when the judgments that have been written concerning the Church and the world must be fulfilled on the one hand, and all the glory and power that is written concerning the Church must be fulfilled on the other hand. Hence the Moses-Elijah company: the fulness of God in the midst of His people, to do away with the old and to establish the new. Moses died; Elijah lived. Moses went down into the grave; Elijah went up into Heaven. Moses administered death and condemnation; Elijah in translation administered life and power–and the very mantle that he wore fluttered down upon his servant Elisha, even the mantle of power and life. This is the hour of God’s vengeance upon the earth; but it is also the hour of God’s Glory in the midst of His people.
THE DAY OF VENGEANCE
“For these be the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled.” (Lk. 21:22.) Vengeance! How we shrink from the awfulness of the Day! But this vengeance is not only to administer death; it is also to administer life. When Jesus picked up the scroll in the synagogue of Nazareth and opened it to the place which spoke of the anointed Messiah bringing deliverance to the people. He closed the book just before He came to the words,” . . . And the day of vengeance of our God.” He was reading from the prophet Isaiah, as follows: “The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me; because the Lord hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the broken-hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound; to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord . . .” (Isa. 61:1,2.) Thus far the Lord read, and then closed the book and gave it back to the servant. (Lk. 4:20.) Why, then, did the Lord close the scroll there, right in the middle of Isa. 61:2? Because thus far was His earthly ministry, and no further. The common explanation is that the remainder of the verse will be fulfilled after the rapture of the Church. Now it is true that the remainder of Isa. 61:2 is to find its fulfillment in the Day of the Lord, when God’s judgments are poured out. But what seems to be largely ignored is the fact that the day of vengeance is at the same time a great day of blessing. Isaiah therefore continues: “And the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn; to appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called Trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified.” (Isa. 61:2,3.) True, it is the day of vengeance, but it is likewise a day of rejoicing–for it is the display of God’s power and glory. It is therefore vengeance upon the works of the Devil, and that will bring judgment to the disobedient, but rejoicing to the obedient. That is why we read, “Say to them that are of a fearful heart, Be strong, fear not: Behold. your God will come with vengeance, even God with a recompense; he will come and save you. Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped. Then shall the lame man leap as a hart, and the tongue of the dumb sing: for in the wilderness shall waters break out, and streams in the desert.” (Isaiah 35:4-6.) Vengeance? Yes, but to save, to heal, to revive. Again we read, “For the day of vengeance is in mine heart, and the year of my redeemed is come,” (Isa. 63:4.) Vengeance? Yes, but at the same time the “year of my redeemed!” GHW
Our God is both just and holy. We cannot separate the two, no matter how much discomfort it causes us. And yes, it often does discomfort us at times. To serve our God, we must acknowledge His justice as well as his holiness. Only He knows how to deal with both within Himself and administer those things in the earth. God is not arbitrary or haphazard in his ways, so we can rest in the fact of His sovereignty.