If God prepared our eternal destiny before creation, how should we treat others?

 

2 Corinthians 5:1 “For we know that if our earthly house, this tent, is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.”

 

Eternal tabernacle

If we have a tabernacle, which was prepared before creation, eternal in the heavens, and we will one day put off our earthly tabernacle and put on an eternal, heavenly tabernacle, then we can declare that before God created our earthly tabernacle, He prepared our eternal, heavenly tabernacle. It can also be said, that before He spoke all things into existence and breathed life into the nostrils of Adam’s earthly tabernacle, He had reserved, in eternity, all the eternal tabernacles destined for His sons and daughters whom He knew would respond to His call to be reconciled unto Him through Christ, 2 Corinthians 5:17-6:2, Romans 8:28-30.

 

This in no way is meant to suggest that any particular man or woman is predestined by God to eternal life or eternal destruction. On the contrary, what was predestined was the plan that God Himself, in Jesus Christ, would take on the nature of His own creation and reconcile His created likeness and image unto Himself through His personal sacrifice. The elect of God living among mankind are the one’s who enter into God’s eternal destiny as His sons via the new birth, which results from their believing in the gospel, repenting of their sins, confessing Jesus is the Christ and being immersed into Him who is the Divine Son of Man and Son of God; the firstfruits of all creation, (Romans 6:2-4, Colossians 2:11-12, Galatians 3:27, I Corinthians 15:20-28). Those who choose not to enter by new birth, though still the offspring of God and eternal, will not be welcomed into His realm, but will be cast forth into outer darkness, Matthew 25:30,46. This is not the desire of the Father, but results from the willfulness of the individual refusing to accept God’s free gift of eternal life in His Son, Romans 6:23.

 

Creation

Acts 17:24-31, “God, who made the world and everything in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands. Nor is He worshiped with men’s hands as though He needed anything, since He gives to all life, breath, and all things. And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their pre-appointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings, so they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us; for in Him we live and move and have our being, as also some of your own poets have said, ‘For we are also His offspring’. Therefore since we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Divine Nature is like gold or silver or stone, something shaped by art and man’s devising. Truly these times of ignorance God overlooked, but now commands all men everywhere to repent, because He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained. He has given assurance of this to all by raising Him from the dead.”

 

Creation occurred when God spoke into existence the elements of the earth and Christ set them together in Himself (Col 1:15-17) after which the Holy Spirit moved upon them to fashion their form; all of which was well pleasing unto the Father. And when the fashioning was complete God, from whom the elements originated, took a portion thereof and formed the first man. Then, after breathing His breath into the man’s inanimate form, raised him up and made him to live in His very image and likeness and allocated to him the responsibility of reigning over all that had emerged from within Himself when He spoke it into existence, Genesis 1:26-28.

 

The sons of Adam

 

All mankind emerged from Adam who, in turn, emerged from God. Adam was brought to life by the eternal Father’s word and breath and existed to exhibited the Father’s very image and likeness. This resulted in all mankind harboring within them the very essence of the living God from whom they were also birthed through their father Adam. Thus, all mankind is the offspring of God and partake of His very essence and nature, Acts 17:29

 

Mankind’s eternal destiny preceded their physical existence

 

In addition to mankind’s physical birth into the realm of created time, mankind’s timeless, heavenly destiny as sons of God in Christ precedes created time, Ephesians 1:3-14. Mankind’s heavenly destiny existed before their earthly father Adam’s tabernacle was given life and before sin erupted in heaven prior to entering created time and separating God’s original offspring from their Heavenly Father.

 

The outcomes that follow being born again

 

This thesis, that God prepared our eternal destiny before He created us out of His very own essence and personally took on our created form and lived among us, illumines our need to be compassionate and loving, not only toward God’s elect but also toward the remainder of mankind, regardless of their race or physical appearance, because they too emerged from the same eternal Father. Both the converted and the unconverted have emerged from God with eternity written on their hearts (Ecclesiastes 3:11) and all harbor the very essence of their eternal Father in an earthly tabernacle. Thus, when we, God’s elect, are compassionate and love others, we love our Father because they are made in His image and His essence resides in them, Matthew 9:36 & 25:40.

 

In the light of this, the teaching in Matthew 25:31-46 can be appreciated and eagerly embraced, along with hundreds of other passages which teach us to love all mankind unreservedly just as God loves them and, beyond that, we can also wholeheartedly, embrace all the scriptures that teach us to keep ourselves from sin, James 1:27; 1 John chapters 1-5.

 

Blessings

Bob Chapman MA

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