Candlestick has a special meaning
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The doctrine of the seven church ages is one of the most important patterns in the Bible. But churches ignore its value
- There are two spirits in the church
- The central candlestick alone has the truth
- The church and the 144000 Jews appear in the Tabernacle
- The 7 church ages cut the 70th week of Daniel in half
- The church in Thyatira only started after John died
- The first church age of Ephesus grew and then relaxed
- Church age 2 put a Bishop in charge of a city
- Church age 3 introduced the deadly error of Trinity
- In church age 4 the big church controlled politics
- In church age 5 Luther restored salvation by faith
- Church age 6 brought holiness and the missionary age
- Church age 7 restores us back to the first church age
- A vision of a magnificent future
There are two spirits in the church
The Book of Revelation is full of symbols that describe the history of the 2000 years of the seven church ages.
The first three Chapters of Revelation involve seven candlesticks.
What does this teach us?
It is as if the church of the New Testament was a "good seed" of Bible truth that the original apostles planted. Then Christians became complacently asleep in a spiritual sense, and error crept in because they did not insist on being strictly Scriptural.
The seed of Truth was buried in the Dark Ages of Europe’s history and then germinated back to life in the Reformation of Martin Luther. The reformers formed the first blades and shoots. The church slowly struggled to get back closer to the original New Testament beliefs of the apostles.
In the end, the plant will produce a seed identical to the seed that was first planted.
But this move was constantly opposed by other spirits in the church that focused on human leadership, unscriptural doctrines, political involvement, big money, and pagan influences.
This clash of spirits occurred within church circles and will continue to the end.
MATTHEW 13:24 Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field:
:25 But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat and went his way.
:26 But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also.
:27 So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares?
:28 He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up?
:29 But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them.
:30 Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest, I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.
At first sight, it seemed that the church burned equally brightly in all seven church ages.
But there were wheat and tares present.
Therefore the church light was and is a mixture of truth and error. There were two vines in the church.
So if we carefully consider what Bible truth was in the church in each age, and separate that from the human traditions and deceptions, then the true light in each age looks more like this:
The central candlestick alone has the truth
Let us consider the symbol of the seven-branched candlestick mentioned in the first three chapters of Revelation. The first church age will be the central lampstand with the most significant flame.
REVELATION 1:13 And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man,Jesus alone is the Truth.
This truth will only be found in the first church age.
We cannot improve on the teachings of Paul and the apostles. The New Testament is the way God wants the church to be.
As we get further away from the central lampstand, we are getting further away from the apostolic truth and into the Dark Ages.Church age 3 saw the truth die at the Council of Nicaea when Trinity entered the church.
Church age 4 saw the Roman Catholics kill tens of millions of opponents.
Moving away from the beliefs of the first church age can be described as EVIL.
This is described by the four churches in Revelation Chapter 2.
If we reverse the direction and move towards the first church age, it becomes LIVE when EVIL is reversed.
The Revelation Chapter 3 deals with restoring the truth from the Dark Ages back to the beliefs of the first church.
Martin Luther in Germany restored salvation by faith in church age 5.
John Wesley in England restored holiness and outreach, which led to the missionary age in church age 6.
In church age 7, Pentecost restored the gifts of the Holy Spirit, and William Branham in America revealed the mysteries of Scripture to restore our understanding of Bible truths so that we could believe what the first church age believed. The last church age is when the Bride has enough light from their oil lamps to read and understand Scripture.
The church and the 144000 Jews appear in the Tabernacle
The seven candlesticks in Revelation reflect the seven-branched candlestick in the Holy Place in the Jewish tabernacle. It was together with the table of shewbread that held 12 loaves.
The vessels in the tabernacle formed a cross.
Thus, they reflected events that will occur in the New Testament when the seven church ages unfold over 2000 years.
Notice the two key numbers, 7 and 12.
Jesus is the Head of the church and the saved people form His spiritual Body.
EPHESIANS 5:23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church:
The head is connected to the body using the backbone.
The first seven vertebrae form the neck. Tying the 7 church ages.
The following 12 vertebrae hold the ribs. Typing the 144000 Jews from the 12 tribes of Israel.
Jesus referred to these two numbers from two of His greatest miracles.
Feeding thousands of Jews from a schoolboy’s lunch of bread and fish.
MATTHEW 16:9 Do ye not yet understand, neither remember the five loaves of the five thousand and how many baskets ye took up?
Jesus wants us to understand something. The critical issue is not the thousands fed but how many baskets of rejected scraps were picked up by the disciples.
MATTHEW 16:10 Neither the seven loaves of the four thousand and how many baskets ye took up?
The number of baskets of rejected scraps of bread and meat was 12 and 7.
What must we understand about the rejected scraps that were collected?
Bread and meat represent doctrine.
The Jews would reject Messiah and the doctrines that He preached as unwanted scraps.
The disciples would pick up the rejected Gospel and make sure that they took these New Testament doctrines out to the Gentiles who would come in during the future seven church ages. Only the apostolic doctrines of the New Testament are valid as a doctrine to feed the souls of future Christians.
The New Testament is the Light of the world, represented by the 7-branched candlestick. The New Testament, which is based on the Old Testament, would be the Light to guide the church through the different conditions of the seven church ages. When the church from 7 ages is resurrected and leaves this world as they are caught up to meet the Lord in the air, the Gospel will go to the Jews, the 12 tribes of Israel, during the 3.5 years of great Tribulation. The Jews will finally receive, from their two prophets, the scraps of New Testament doctrine that their ancestors rejected 2000 years ago.
The 7 church ages cut the 70th week of Daniel in half
Jesus had a three and a half year ministry to the Jews. Then the Jews rejected Him.
God turned from the Jews to the Gentiles during the seven church ages. On the day of Pentecost, the Holy Ghost came down to guide the church through 7 church ages and will leave the earth when the Holy Spirit catches the church up to meet the Lord in the air. Then God turns back to the Jews during the final three and a half years of great Tribulation.
The 12 loaves of shewbread represent the 12 tribes of Israel.
I CHRONICLES 9:32 And other of their brethren, of the sons of the Kohathites, were over the shewbread, to prepare it every sabbath.
The shewbread lasted seven days before 12 new shewbread loaves were baked to replace the old loaves on the next Sabbath.
The priests ate the old loaves in the Holy Place. The shewbread had to stay in the Holy Place.
These 12 loaves symbolize the 144000 from the 12 tribes of Israel, at the end of the seven church ages (typed by the end of the 7-day week), who have to be back in their Promised Land (symbolized by the Holy Place) to meet Messiah.
We have seen the Jews returning to Israel for the last century. The stage is being prepared for the return of the Messiah to Jerusalem. The 12 tribes of Israel are returning to the Promised Land at the end of the seven church ages.
12 and 7 thus reveal a deeper meaning, a definite pattern in God's plan.
According to some historians, there was no church in the city of Thyatira by the time John the Revelator died about the year AD 100. That church only came into existence later. So John’s letters were not just describing events in these local churches but also referring to future events. There was no “Balaam” nor “Jezebel” in these early churches.
These names refer back to periods in Jewish history when false leaders were raised up to oppose God’s men of those time periods, who were Moses and Elijah, respectively. Significantly, they are also the names of the two witnesses who will return to Israel in the Tribulation (Revelation Chapter 11) to turn the 144000 to the Messiah.
The church in Thyatira only started after John died
This symbolized that the apostles all had to die before such a backsliding church could come into existence. The church of Thyatira would later move far away from the original apostolic doctrine.
Thus John was not writing about the condition of the church in Thyatira, as there was no church in his day.
The church of Pergamos had no man Balaam in it.
So John was not writing about the 7 churches of his day. Each church had characteristics of a future church age.
Thus the 7 churches give a unique prophecy of the changing conditions in the church during 7 church ages that would cover 2000 years of church history.
The church of Thyatira did not form in the days of the apostles but started soon after. This symbolized that the church age of Thyatira, the Dark Age, was the furthest that the church backslid away from the teachings and influence of the apostles.
REVELATION 1:19 Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter;"Hereafter". These churches prophesy of future church ages.
John would tell us some things about the first church age that he lived in. Then John would see future revelations about the church ages, and then the Jews being restored in great Tribulation at the end of the 7 church ages.
Thus the “mystery of the seven churches” means that each of the existing six churches and the soon-to-be-formed church of Thyatira had within them the characteristics of a future age that the Christian church would go through.
God wanted to push His church through seven very different sets of circumstances.
In the end, God would be able to claim that whatever adverse conditions existed, and however Satan attacked the church in fiendishly different ways, there would always be those Christians who could overcome. Their testimony would prove the falseness of those people who would claim that their circumstances were too challenging for them to survive as Christians, which is why they abandoned the faith. Jesus can help everybody through their particular fiery furnace if they are not prepared to bow down to what is false and unscriptural, despite severe and intense pressure to do so.
God’s rule is simple, as in early Babylon:
If you refuse to bow, God will refuse to let you burn.
The first church age of Ephesus grew and then relaxed
Church Age 1 began in AD 33 on the day of Pentecost.
Around AD 100, the last apostle, John, died, and ambitious human leaders began to rise in the church.
Ephesus means aimed at and relaxed.
Minor unscriptural errors began to creep in. One-man leadership of the church started to creep in.
People, feeling complacent, did not care about small mistakes, but the trickle of error would grow into a flood in later ages.
This first church age ended during the reign of the Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius (161-180 AD), when Christians were persecuted.
The second church age would see much persecution of the Christians.
Approximately 3 million Christians were killed by the Roman empire from the persecution of Nero starting in AD 64 and ending in AD 312 with the persecution begun by emperor Diocletian. Most of these deaths happened in the second church age, from about AD 170 to AD 312.
The first church age was built on the New Testament and the apostles' doctrines. The Word of God was their Absolute.
A group of elders ruled each local church.
The only name that believers had was “Christian.”
There were no denominations while the apostles lived.
ACTS 20:17 And from Miletus he sent to Ephesus and called the elders of the church.
ACTS 20:28 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.
Paul did not put a pastor in charge of the church at Ephesus.
ACTS 20:29 For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock.
Ambitious leaders, ruthless in seizing power and money, would dominate the church in later days.
ACTS 20:30 Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.
New Testament Christianity would degenerate into denominational Churchianity under a one-person ruler or boss who demands that people follow what he says. This would be the big failure of the future church.
Then women would be allowed to teach in the church.
I TIMOTHY 2:12 But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence.These were some of the mistakes that began to creep in after the apostles died.
While the apostles were alive, the first church age became the pattern of what the New Testament church should be like for all ages.
The apostles never got involved in politics.
The murderous Nero was emperor in Paul’s day. Paul could have had a great time listing Nero’s faults, but Paul just said that we must pray for the leaders.
Paul always boosted Christ as the fullness of the Godhead.
COLOSSIANS 2:9 For in him [Jesus] dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.
Nero would die, so Paul ignored him, but Jesus would remain, so Paul uplifted Him.
This candlestick represents the first church age of the New Testament. Our best example of a Christian church.
The New Testament church at the beginning of the first church age is the model church that we should be restored back to.
Church age 2 put a Bishop in charge of a city
As time moved on, human leadership introduced error as different deviations from Scripture began.
Men began to call themselves by new, unscriptural titles like “the bishop of Antioch.”
PHILIPPIANS 1:1 Paul and Timotheus, the servants of Jesus Christ, to all the saints in Christ Jesus which are at Philippi, with the bishops and deacons:
There were many bishops in the city of Philippi.
The early church never had a bishop of a city.
A bishop is simply an alternative title for an elder.
57-0908 HEBREWS CHAPTER FIVE AND SIX.1
Show me by the Bible what's greater, in the Bible, than a local elder to a local church?
That's right, yes, sir, the sovereignty of the local church, each church in itself.
The local elders rule each local church.
AN EXPOSITION OF THE SEVEN CHURCH AGES. PERGAMOS. NICOLAITANES.
Now, this doctrine started as a deed in the first age. The problem lay in two words: 'elders' (presbyters) and 'overseers' (bishops). Though Scripture shows that there are several elders in each church, some began (Ignatius [from Antioch] among them) to teach that the idea of a bishop was one of preeminence or authority and control over the elders.
Now the truth of the matter is the word 'elder' signifies who the person is, while the word 'bishop' signifies the office of the same man. The elder is the man. Bishop is the office of the man. 'Elder' always has and always will refer simply to a man's chronological age in the Lord. He is an elder, not because he is elected or ordained, etc., but because he IS OLDER. He is more seasoned, trained, not a novice, reliable because of experience and long-standing proof of his Christian experience.
But no, the bishops did not stick to the epistles of Paul but instead, they went to Paul's account of the time he called the elders from Ephesus to Miletus in Acts 20. In verse 17, the record states, "elders" were called, and then in verse 28, they are called overseers (bishops). And these bishops (no doubt political minded and anxious for power) insisted that Paul had given the meaning that 'overseers' were more than the local elder with official capacity only in his own church. To them, a bishop was now one with extended authority over many local leaders. Such a concept was neither Scriptural nor historical, yet even a man of the stature of Polycarp leaned toward such organization.
Elders had ruled the early church, which was usually small local groups.
The word “pastor” is only mentioned once in the New Testament but condemned prophetically six times in the Book of Jeremiah. There is no Scriptural authority for a pastor being the head of the church.
(Especially since there are 45000 different types of churches today, headed by tens of thousands of pastors with different beliefs. A real spiritual swamp).
The church began to drift away from strict New Testament standards as time passed.
Religious deception was creeping in. Jesus had warned, “Take heed that no man deceive you” in Matthew 24:4, but people preferred human wisdom instead of Scripture.
MATTHEW 24:4 And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you.
Smyrna means bitterness and death. Persecution and poverty stopped the church from straying too far. God commended this church age.
The unpalatable truth is that persecution and poverty are good for the church.
The church looked like it was still shining bright, but some of that light was just human wisdom caused by human leaders thinking up their own ideas.
Jesus and John the Baptist were not polite when they addressed the Jewish religious leaders as these leaders were leading the Jews astray. Human leaders in this second church age were starting to mislead the churches and, sadly, the truth was shrinking.
So the second church age looked like this, in terms of truth, as the flame of Bible truth was shrinking.
Church age 3 introduced the deadly error of Trinity
The Council of Nicaea in AD 325 put the official church under the domination of a ruthless political tyrant, the emperor Constantine.
He had stopped persecuting the Christians in AD 312, and the grateful Christians now accepted this murderous semi-pagan politician as the head of the church. An awful mistake.
The emperor gave the bishop of Rome vast wealth and the beautiful Lateran palace to make sure he obeyed the emperor. Because the bishop of Rome was backed by the Roman emperor Constantine, this bishop ambitiously then wanted influence and control over other cities. Rome had been the capital of the empire, so the bishop of Rome felt that he was more important than the bishops of other cities.
Unscriptural words like Trinity, Christmas, Good Friday, and Pope became the church's focus. Political involvement entered the church, and pagans were persecuted. Eventually, Christians who disagreed with the Roman Catholic church were also persecuted.
Pagan traditions were dressed up in Bible terms.
Christmas on a made-up date of 25 December that copied the birthday of the Roman sun god was declared around AD 350 to be a church festival by Julius, the bishop of Rome.
The Bible never asked us to remember the birth of Jesus.
Spreading this unscriptural Christmas as a significant church doctrine and festival around the world helped establish Rome's authority over other churches.
The Roman bishop invented Christmas. Thus all the churches that accepted Christmas fell under the influence of Rome. Rome made the laws of Christmas.
According to Rome, it must be a big festival on a pagan day in midwinter. Thus shepherds could not be in the fields at night as winter is far too cold outside. This was an outright denial of Scripture. They claimed the wise men went to the stable, which was another denial of Scripture. This gave them the excuse to introduce presents and a star. A star must be up in the air, so the decorated pagan “Christmas tree” was adopted.
The wise men actually went to a house and saw a young Child, not a baby.
MATTHEW 2:11 And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother,
The Jews went astray when they introduced the star of their god.
AMOS 5:26 But ye have borne the tabernacle of your Moloch and Chiun your images,
the star of your god, which ye made to yourselves.
The pagans worshiped a star god. Except for Venus, the evening and morning star, Saturn was the next brightest star to be worshiped. They did not know it was a planet in those days.
That is why they claimed the wise men followed the star to the stable. The star had nothing to do with the stable when Jesus was born. The wise men only got there two years later. The Star that guided the wise men for two years was the Holy Spirit. Today, the Holy Spirit still guides wise people to Christ.
But the pagan star was part of the mid-winter festivals in December.
JEREMIAH 10:2 Thus saith the LORD, Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven [signs of the Zodiac]; for the heathen are dismayed at them.
:3 For the customs of the people are vain: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe.
:4 They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not.
A cut-down and decorated tree and a star on its top were standard pagan mid-winter symbols. The word "Yule" in the Chaldean (or Babylonian) language means "child". From them, we got Yuletide. Thus mid-winter had to be the time of the birth of Jesus to keep the pagans happy.
Picking the date 25 December according to the new Roman calendar, which had been changed in 45 BC by the Roman dictator Julius Caesar, gave this Roman calendar authority over other nations. To keep the made-up Roman Catholic laws of Christmas, the people had to adopt the new Roman calendar. This gave Rome even more authority over other people.
DANIEL 7:25 And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the Most High, and think to change times and laws:
Eventually, Pope Gregory 13 would finalize the changes to the calendar. Now the whole world uses these changes that make the times of the Roman calendar fit in precisely with the seasons of the year. The pagan Roman Caesar and the Roman Pope Gregory 13 combined to produce the best calendar. This extended the authority of the Pope over church festivals.
GALATIANS 4:9 But now, after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements, whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage?
:10 Ye observe days, and months, and times, and years.
:11 I am afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you labour in vain.
Annual church festivals are to be avoided. There are no special days for annual festivals.
Paul complained of their bondage to days (25th) months (December) times (Christmas time) years (every year).
Using these clever and popular festivals based on paganism, believers got taken away from the Bible to follow the laws of the Roman Catholic church. A bad mistake.
Rome changed the calendar by which we measure time.
Rome introduced the laws of the Christmas festival and the Ishtar eggs and Ishtar bunnies for the spring festival or sex orgy in March-April. Nine months after mid-April, babies would be born in mid-December, Yule time, or the child's time.
Nimrod was killed and his wife Semiramis, claiming to be Ishtar the queen of heaven, took part in the mid-April spring festival orgy so that her son Tammuz was born in mid-December. She claimed that this child was the resurrection of her dead husband, Nimrod. A tree, if cut down, usually grows again. The cut-down “Christmas” tree thus symbolized Nimrod being killed, and the decorations on the tree symbolized Tammuz being born as the “resurrection” of Nimrod.
A round bun represented Semiramis or Ishtar as the moon or queen of heaven. (The source of Mary worship).
A '†' on the bun was the initial "T" for her son Tammuz, born nine months later. This was the source of inspiration for our hot cross buns.
This third church age saw the spirit of paganism infiltrate the church, using Bible words for pagan practices. Ishtar became Easter.
Hugh Hefner corrupted millions of Americans with his Playboy magazine and bunny girls. Why did he dress the women in bunny outfits? What does this tell us about the source of Easter bunnies? Bunnies are the fastest breeders. Bunnies were a symbol for sex orgies.
Again Rome dragged us into the orbit of her wrong dates.
The Pope declared that Jesus died on a Friday afternoon. Everybody obeys Rome without even thinking.
MATTHEW 12: 40 For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.
To be buried for three nights means that Jesus died on Thursday afternoon. He was in the tomb on Thursday night, Friday night, and Saturday night. Then he rose on Sunday morning.
The Passover lamb was publically chosen on the 10th day and taken to the person's house, and killed on the 14th day.
EXODUS 12:3 Speak ye unto all the congregation of Israel, saying, In the tenth day of this month they shall take to them every man a lamb, according to the house of their fathers, a lamb for an house:
EXODUS 12:6 And ye shall keep it up until the fourteenth day of the same month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the evening.
Jesus was publically chosen as King by the Jews on Palm Sunday, which was the 10th day of the month.
The 14th day would then be Thursday when He was killed.
"Good Friday" is a Roman Catholic invention not found in Scripture.
The 15th day was the first day of the feast of unleavened bread. This was a High Day or special Sabbath.
"Denomination" is an unscriptural word that was taking over the church world.
Constantine showered political authority, money, and buildings on the church.
Thus the church listened to him, not the Bible.
Pergamos means thoroughly married. The church was married to paganism, worldliness, wealth, and politics.
The church shone brightly with human opinions like the Trinity that they argued about for centuries until they convinced almost everybody.
God lost His name, and they were reduced to baptizing in three titles instead of a name.
They talk about the name of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost but cannot tell you what that name is.
You cannot find one name for three People.
In addition, Trinity is an unscriptural word.
Thus the third church age looked like the above candlestick in terms of truth.
Trinity was the first time that they made an unscriptural word an official doctrine. Today they use that as an excuse for any other unscriptural word. Their argument is:
"If Trinity is unscriptural and it is the truth, then any other unscriptural word like Christmas (for example) must also be the truth."
Thus unscriptural truth spreads like a virus.
In church age 4 the big church controlled politics
REVELATION 13:2 ... and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.
The Roman emperor Constantine gave the Lateran Palace to the Roman bishop, and it remains the official seat of the Roman Catholic church, which the Popes claim to be the seat of Saint Peter.
With the emperor's backing, the Roman bishop would soon claim power over the other churches. He became Pope around the time that he accepted the title of Pontifex Maximus (Pontiff) as High Priest of the Babylonian mysteries. Being Pontiff gave him great authority over the pagan tribes that invaded and destroyed the Roman empire.
A massive church hierarchy with unscriptural titles would grow to dominate the Dark Ages, where the Bible was in Latin and not read by ordinary people.
People were often killed just for owning a Bible or for disagreeing with the Roman Catholic church.
Murdering any heretics who disagreed with the Pope was regarded as standard procedure.
This was the church age of Thyatira, which means a dominating woman. A woman symbolizes a church. The Roman Catholic Church dominated Europe in the Dark Ages.
The history of the Roman Catholic Church is described in Revelation Chapter 17 and Chapter 13.
The awful Borgia Pope Alexander VI represented a pit of depravity as truth was buried under dirt.
Political power, church laws, and human greed dominated the church.
The official Roman church dominated Europe and truth died before the onslaught of unscriptural church traditions and doctrines. True believers had to flee to wilderness areas. The Waldenses started in the city of Lyons but had to hide from the murderous Catholic armies in the mountains of the Alps that formed a protective wilderness for them. The Rhine and Rhone rivers are shown on the following map.
Pope, Cardinal, Metropolitan, Archbishop, and Archdeacon are all unscriptural titles, but that is what ruled the Roman Catholic Church.
The church was brightly illuminated with cunning human doctrines and philosophies and money-making projects.
But in terms of Bible truth, this is how the fourth church age looked:
The fourth lamp had little Bible truth compared to the first lamp.
Chapter 2 of the Book of Revelation lists four churches.
They represent the first four church ages. Four in the middle of seven. So the fourth church age is known as the Middle Age or Dark Age when the church ruled Europe.
The truth had steadily declined from the apostolic age to the brutal and superstitious Dark Age of Churchianity which had effectively replaced Christianity. Human traditions and church doctrines had moved away from the Bible truths of the New Testament.
The first four church ages had one thing in common, a movement away from the New Testament church.
Chapter 3 of the Book of Revelations mentions three church ages where the opposite happened.
Reformers were trying to move the church back closer to the Bible beliefs of the first church age of the apostles.
In church age 5 Luther restored salvation by faith
Martin Luther's Reformation made a new start from the other side of the candlestick.
There was still much ignorance in the church, but a new desire had been awakened to start getting back to the apostles' doctrine in the New Testament.
Then brave Martin Luther in Germany defied the murderous church system. The reformers of this age were the first leaves shooting up as the seed Word of God began to germinate. The reformers restored salvation by faith in Christ and not by works. Then Satan fought back, and soon politics and violence re-entered the church. But a beginning had been made to get back to what the early apostles taught. The church age of Sardis, the escaped ones.
The King James Version of the Bible was born in 1611 to give the Scripture in English and checked and re-checked for over 150 years to be finalized in 1769. Then It formed the backbone of the golden missionary age.
Luther stood out like a solitary light in the darkness when the Reformation started. Saved by faith alone. Soon he was joined by other reformers.
The 5th church age looked like the above candlestick as Luther, and the reformers had moved to the other side of the lampstand to start a new movement. He wanted to restore the apostolic doctrine of salvation in Christ alone. He did not want to use good works as the key to salvation and thereby move further away from the New Testament Scriptures.
Church age 6 brought holiness and the missionary age
Then John Wesley in England, abstaining from preaching politics and rejecting violence, restored holiness and outreach, which laid the foundation for the great open door of the missionary age. The life-giving pollen of the Word of God was carried around the world. This was the golden church age of Philadelphia, brotherly love.What helped the missionaries is that you have to preach salvation in the name of Jesus, not in the name of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.
REVELATION 3:8 I know thy works: behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it: for thou hast a little strength, and hast kept my word, and hast not denied my name.
The missionary age was the ultimate in sacrifice and dedicated efforts. Yet God credits them with little strength.
So God regards something as being more important than valiant human labours.
The truth of Scripture was getting stronger, so the sixth church age looked like the above candlestick.But a vital step was missing. The understanding of the mysteries of God.
Church age 7 restores us back to the first church age
This present age is the church of the Laodiceans (notice they make up their own church ideas).
We are supposed to become just like the early apostolic church of the New Testament.
The Pentecostal outpouring in Wales in 1904 and at the previously unknown downtown 312 Azusa street building in Los Angeles in 1906
restored the supernatural power of the Holy Spirit.
The church was on track to being restored to the beliefs of the apostolic church of the New Testament. This was the husk that protected the seed. But sadly, by 1917, Pentecost was denominating into factions just like the other churches had done.
God did not just want a restoration of the Holy Spirit's power; He also wanted a complete restoration of the Bible's truth.
JOHN 4:24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.The power of Pentecost, by itself, does not prepare us for the Coming of the Lord.
MATTHEW 7:22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
:23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
These people had powerful Pentecostal ministries, but they missed a more important point.
God wants to reveal the mysteries of the Scripture to us.
JOHN 16:13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come,
he will guide you into all truth:
Today the seed, which is the Word of God, has to ripen in the revealed truth of Scripture.
The final seed that a plant produces is identical to the original seed that was planted. There is no difference.
If the 7th age produces a different seed from the first age, then the 7th age church is a man-made modified hybrid.
God wants every seed to bring forth of its own kind. God never ordained a hybrid seed.
But church-goers prefer church loyalty to Bible truth.
Each person only believes what his or her church preaches. They learn to reject any revealed truth that is different from what their specific church teaches.
This is how the seventh church looks as it is locked in man-made commandments and doctrines and thus cannot discover the whole truth of Scripture.
The church has come a long way from the Dark Ages but is still not back to the beliefs of the original apostles.
Listen to church preachers tell you about the mistakes, contradictions, myths, and faulty translations in the King James Version of the Bible. Thus they have no Absolute to focus their attention on.
So in the last church age of Laodicea (people’s rights), the church has lost direction.
The church should get back to the Bible beliefs of the New Testament.
But Bible knowledge is shrinking in our 7th church age.
The Bible warns that the seventh church is blind.
REVELATION 3:14 And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write;:17 ...and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:
The church got more prosperous and more materialistic instead of more Biblical.
Today there are 45000 different kinds of denominational and non-denominational churches. That represents a broad spectrum of different beliefs.
Today’s church world can get people saved (which is very good) and teach them many good truths about the Holy Spirit and how to live a good life. But then the church proceeds to lose direction, starting with all their varieties of water baptism in a money-driven age of competitive Christianity that has many unscriptural traditions and doctrines (which is terrible). This mixture of good and evil makes the church lukewarm. As such, they are keen to reject the end-time revelations of Scripture. Thus Jesus stands outside the door of the church.
REVELATION 3:14 And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write;
REVELATION 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door and knock:
The end-time church rejects Jesus, the written Word of God. They are happy to restore the Spirit of God but not the Truth of revealed Scripture.
This is how the seventh church should look as it seeks to be restored in both Spirit and Truth to the New Testament church.
Thus the restoration of Spirit and Truth, back to the example of the New Testament church, since the Reformation that started in 1520 looks like this:
Thus looking at the entire candlestick, in terms of the light of the Bible truth, reveals two trends.
The central lampstand was the first church age.
Church ages 1 to 4 revealed a movement away from Scripture to the right.
Church ages 5 to 7 reveal a movement back to Scripture, on the left, that will only end when the last church is just like the first church.
Alpha and Omega, the First and the Last, must agree as the 7th church age is restored back to the first church age.
A vision of a magnificent future
Please note that there is great depth in the symbols of Revelation.
The many symbols in the Book of Revelation cover the history of the church plus the events leading up to the Coming of the Lord and then the 3.5 years of great Tribulation that set in as the Gospel returns to the Jews. Then comes the titanic battle of Armageddon and the 1000 years of peace before the new Heaven and the new Earth set in.
REVELATION 21:1 And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.
There will be no more sea.Our present earth is the first earth. That will last until the end of the 1000-year Kingdom called the Millennium. Then the sea explodes to vaporize the crust of the earth, destroying our deepest mines and all our cities. On the remaining volcanic ash, God builds a new Earth for eternity.
The sea will explode and totally destroy the earth's surface and burn up all the orbiting satellites. There will be no trace left of all our technological and scientific “marvels” that did great things but also caused much damage and produced huge imbalances.
The final unsustainable fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.Jesus ruling on earth for 1000 years is our first taste of Heaven. So the Millennium is the first Heaven.
Eternity must be built on a much better foundation, which is Jesus Christ. He somehow will combine both Heaven and earth for the welfare and benefit of those who became born again of both Spirit and Truth.