HOW TO CHANGE THE WORLD

The task which Jesus has bestowed upon Christians is not easy. However, it is simple enough to fit in a single sentence: “We who are strong have an obligation to bear with the failings of the weak, and not to please ourselves” (Rom. 15:1 ESV). As Christians, we have the spiritual duty to tend to the needs and struggles of the non-Christians around us. Despite our differences in many aspects, we are called to love them with the love of Christ.

When Jesus began His public ministry, He read aloud the scroll of the prophet Isaiah. From it, he recited this passage specifically: “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor” (Lk. 4:18-19; cf. Isa. 58:6 ESV). By saying these words, Jesus called to the forefront of the Hebrew minds Isaiah’s prophetic promise of national deliverance and restoration. Jesus declared that He had fulfilled that prophecy through His very Christology, and that through Him, the world would certainly change.

Jesus effected the highest form of social change in the world. T.S. Eliot captures the nature of the change Jesus ushered into the world through his eloquent poem, Journey of the Magi. Based from the story, the symbolic depiction of the global change achieved through the Christian mission is reminisced by one of the Magi, who witnessed Christ’s birth. In the final stanza, the Magi asks, “Birth or Death? … [I] had thought they were different; this birth was hard and bitter agony for us.”  In Christ’s birth, the abolition of the old Roman religion was consummated; eventually, Christianity took a dominant role in the world. Jesus took away old traditions and customs of the pre-Christian world. He ushered into the social landscape both a new understanding of how others should be treated and an obligation to tend to the needs of the poor.

If we are bent on emulating Christ, we must also emulate His impact on the world. We must confront social inadequacy and deplorable customs if we are to fulfill the Great Commission and carry out the movement which Jesus began. Of course, it is the will of God for His Church to transform the social landscape and form it into His image.

Social landscapes adjust to the individuals residing in them. Therefore, if a culture should be changed, an initial change must occur among those comprising the society. We are unable to claim a desire for one thing, yet we practice another contrarily. As Christians, we must be a consistent and pursue holiness, goodness, and justice. If we desire these things and evangelize our local communities, our social landscapes will definitely adjust accordingly. However, if we fail to live our lives based on what, we will not be able to provide any authentic or meaningful influence into the culture where we belong.

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How is God using you to change the world?

 

THE POWER OF SOCIAL CHRISTIANITY

Christianity is a social powerhouse. The actions and institutions ushered into the social landscape of the world in Jesus’ name are verified throughout the historical religious world. Even today, the Christian Church continues to be the largest benefactor of social care in the world. The ethical worldview of the Church has given rise to countless hospitals, orphanages, and homeless shelters. This suggests that the power of Christianity in the social landscape—global or local—is unparalleled in its duration and efficiency. The Lord prophesied such exemplification when he commanded, “Give to the one who begs from you, and do not refuse the one who would borrow from you” (Matt. 5:42 ESV).

            Organized labor has changed the world, not necessarily for the better or worse. The change caused by the rise of industrialism and commercialism has given Christianity a context. Inter-personal relationships in the areas of charity and care have slowly diminished, while large corporate entities have taken their place. Rather than physically going to one’s neighbor and helping him, one can send a care package to an impoverished child over the internet. This aspect of social change flies in the face of the personal nature of the social gospel Jesus preached; however, the powerful forces of such corporate entities cannot be denied.

Christian non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have, for a long time, contributed to the alleviation of global suffering by expressing compassion and sympathy in action. The World Council of Churches and Caritas Internationalis spend over a billion dollars a year in aid and development. After World War II, 90% of assistance provided to needy families was from similar Christian NGOs. A study conducted concerning Catholic Relief Services showed that one-third of AIDS victims in the world are treated and cared for by the Catholic Church. As an institutional organism, the Christian Church has definitely succeeded in addressing social issues.

Walter Rauschenbusch offers a fair criticism of the modern industrial context by claiming that, “Industry ought to exist for the support of life; actually, it exists to make money, and it is in constant danger of sacrificing the life of the many to the profits of the few.” Love does exist in society, but, Rauschenbusch continues says, “Alongside of great sympathy for single cases of suffering runs an astounding indifference to suffering and death in the mass. We strain out the gnat of football accidents and swallow the camel of Pittsburg steel industries without winking.”

Who among us is not moved when we watch a slideshow of pictures of impoverished people on a screen in church in order to try and save them? Certainly, a particular love exists in the hearts of men in such situations. But do we concern ourselves with such singular, individual cases and not sympathize with the whole world over the many social issues hounding it? Like what Rauschenbusch says, everybody is aware of the danger that comes with playing football, head trauma being the most common. But who is aware of the countless limbs industrial workers lose annually, or the danger faced by workers who earn far less than a typical football player? Such awareness is next to non-existence in the social landscape today. Rauschenbusch, who wrote an entire century ago, depicts a figure of those injured in American work accidents as much as half a million on an annual basis.

The Church needs to be aware of these things. The Church needs to care and to show sincere compassion towards those suffering from lesser-known social crises. Otherwise, we turn a blind eye to our neighbor—intentional or not—and fail to uphold Christ’s commission that we love the struggling. Jesus was never apathetic to the sufferings of those around Him. His message has historically been accompanied by the social tenderness and sympathy which Jesus himself breathed into the Christian community.

 

Studying the Word of God is about equipping yourself to live out in practical ways the standard of the Bible. Archbishop Jordan’s book, Prophet in the Marketplace is now available exclusively via the Book of the Month Club.

 

Not only does the Book of the Month Club provide a pathway to knowledge, wisdom and insight, it also sets you up to be in attendance at the Spring Session of Prophecology 2018: Birthing House: The Latter Rain, February 23-25, 2018.

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SOCIAL MEDIA: THE MODERN-DAY MARKETPLACE

According to Walter Rauschenbusch, the social gospel is the old message of salvation, but enlarged and intensified. The individualistic gospel taught us to see the sinfulness of every human heart; in addition, it also inspired us to have faith in the power and love of God to save every soul that comes to him. However, this individualistic gospel has not given us sufficient understanding of the sinfulness of the social order and its share in the sins of all individuals within this order. In effect, how does society sustain the sinfulness of men?

The Apostle Paul warned the young prophet Timothy to inform and instruct him in the perilous time he would observe, something that we are still living in today. His warning on the dangers of the marketplace during their time has remained relevant even today. Those were the sins Timothy would confront and expose in preaching God’s Word. Those were the sins that he would need to avoid in his life, as young as he was and much more vulnerable to temptation.

1You must understand this, that in the last days distressing times will come. For people will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, inhuman, implacable, slanderers, profligates, brutes, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to the outward form of godliness but denying its power. Avoid them! For among them are those who make their way into households and captivate silly women, overwhelmed by their sins and swayed by all kinds of desires, who are always being instructed and can never arrive at a knowledge of the truth.

(2 Timothy 3:1-7)

Open your social media accounts and you will see people who are “lovers of themselves,” “lovers of money,” “boasters.” You will also see those who are arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, the list can go on. Whom/What does your social media account glorify? Does it glorify God or does it glorify only you? Moreover, what does it mean to be prophets in the marketplace today? It means to be prophets of God in the social media where the people hang out.

People who excessively love themselves are individuals who are utterly self-centered. Everything they do is driven by self-love, rather than self-sacrifice. Because they are so self-engrossed, nothing interferes with their pursuit of self. They do not allow the Word of God to call them out of bondage of their sins. In a society that encourages “selfies” and using “#blessed” captions to “humbly brag” about the things they own or the place they have been, the prophet in the social media marketplace must recognize these sins in the sinners, as well as themselves. However, they must still be compassionate towards the sinners themselves. Today’s prophets in the marketplace must be sincere with spreading the social gospel, wherein we realize that we can only find the true meaning of life in the love of God and in spreading this love to others.

In the King James Version of the Bible, a single word represents those who are “lovers of money,” who are said to be simply “covetous.”Covetousness is about being consumed by the desire for more, to make material wealth the chief object of one’s affection. What did Paul say about this sin that we see so widespread in the marketplace? The reason a lot of people are primarily in the marketplace is that they desire more material gain.

Of course, there is great gain in godliness combined with contentment; for we brought nothing into the world, so that we can take nothing out of it; but if we have food and clothing, we will be content with these. But those who want to be rich fall into temptation and are trapped by many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, and in their eagerness to be rich some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pains. (1 Timothy 6:6-10 NRSV)

 

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How do you differentiate self-love from sacrifice in the context of your life?

 

SOCIAL SCIENCE AND CHRISTIANITY

We hear the world saying that science and religion are unrelated activities of the human mind. Charles A. Ellwood said, “A new hope has come into the world — that science may unite with religion in the work of redeeming mankind; that thus we of this generation may discover a new synthesis of aspiration with knowledge.” The world says that science cannot be the basis for religion and that it deals with entirely different realms of experience. However, God says, “The earth is the Lord’s and all that is in it, the world, and those who live in it” (Psalm 24:1). God’s declaration breaks this compartmentalization mindset that distinguishes between the secular and the sacred.

Moreover, Ellwood also suggests that when the church welcomes social science as an ally, then there will be a powerful religious revival that the world has never seen before. Maybe the Body of Christ should start caring more about the social issues that surround the community which it is a part of. But how can the church play a more active role in society?  What gifts does the prophet have to offer to the marketplace?

The worldview that we are all “allies” is a social science model wherein the ultimate goal is to explore whether social science and Christianity are capable of a dynamic integration. In contrast to the “Enemy” social science model, which illustrates social science and Christianity on opposing ends of the spectrum, the goal of the “Allies” model is to achieve unity wholeness in the world. Integration refers to the act or process of making whole; in this case, therefore, integration could refer to the process of fitting two items together in order to make one orderly functioning entity. Simply said, social gospel seeks to unite social science and Christianity together to make the world a better place.

While the church must not turn a blind eye to sin, it must also not bring about condemnation to sinners. In Jesus’ time, he always took the side of the poor, the outcast, the oppressed, and the marginalized, at the expense of the religious leaders who strictly followed the rules.

The crowd did not encounter Jesus and walked away saying, “Man, he sure hated adulterers!” In fact, Jesus stood up for a woman whom the Pharisees called as adulterous (John 8:1-11). Jesus’ main concerns were and are the poor, the homeless, and the sick. Accordingly, maybe the church should also sow into these areas that concerned Jesus the most when he walked the earth. If we apply the “Allies” social science model into practice, we will notice more and more about how the world needs the Body of Christ to put into practice the message of the Bible.

Studying the Word of God is about equipping yourself to live out in practical ways the standard of the Bible. Archbishop Jordan’s book, Prophet in the Marketplace is now available exclusively via the Book of the Month Club.

 

Not only does the Book of the Month Club provide a pathway to knowledge, wisdom and insight, it also sets you up to be in attendance at the Spring Session of Prophecology 2018: Birthing House: The Latter Rain, February 23-25, 2018.

Go to and join the club now!

What can you learn from Jesus as the epitome of a social gospel preacher?

THE NEED FOR IMMEDIATE ACTION

Our scriptures contain Christ’s command. We have an enormous history of the Christian faith which chronicles faithful submission to the Great Commission, along with great stories of men and women who have traveled to various countries to evangelize the inhabitants. The question, however, is, “Are we doing it correctly?” If we are not doing it properly, should there be a reformation of evangelizing tactics?

Don’t get me wrong. There is a very efficient system in place, where benefactors contribute funds to a missionary family, which then goes out into another country to teach the gospel to its people. But asking if this is the system Christ intended for us to execute cannot be avoided I believe that, on top of the systematic missions the Christian faith performs, applying the system itself is crucial so we will effectively engage the world as a whole with the message of Christ.

The call to evangelize is not mutually exclusive to a specific office of the church militant. Pastors, missionaries, elders, deacons, and the common laymen all possess equal responsibility to bring the gospel into the world personally. While contributing money for gospel preaching in other nations is a remarkable practice, if it is the only initiative we take in order to fulfill the Great Commission, then we are failing greatly.

The call to evangelize is a message for each evangelical church as much as it is a message for the entire Church. Each person within the body of Christ must go forth into his or her workplace, school, or other common place of habit, and share Christ’s gospel. We should make disciples of all nations, including, quite literally, our neighbors. What sense does it make if we financially contribute to a missionary overseas but fail to commit to caring for one’s neighbor personally?

Once again, a disturbing lack of apathy among Christians is present, despite their moving emotionalism for specific cases. We may pity the less fortunate, those in third-world countries, or the AIDS victims in Africa; nevertheless, if we fail to care for the needs—either spiritual or physical—of our immediate localities, then we fail in executing Christ’s command in evangelizing the world.

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THE GOSPEL IN ACTION

The Apostle James once wrote, “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves” (James 1:22 KJV). James’ words are more relevant today than ever; even in the same context as was in James’ time. The quote is both an ideal and an action since it has both a spiritual and material substance. One must accept Christ’s work through one’s mental faculties; however, this expression must be worked through Christian love, which cannot happen without evangelization.

If we truly are convinced with the truth of the gospel and its power over our lives, then we should evangelize. Of course, a Christian may not totally agree to such a statement. Many Christian churches and faithful support missionaries who go overseas to preach the gospel to those who have never heard it before. Such a reality is actually a blessing from God. However, we know that we can always do more.

The gospel is a call to action; it is a call to abandon our old ways and offer our full attention to the social issues plaguing our world today. If we truly care about our souls and those of those around us, then the social gospel is not just another doctrine we can pick or choose; it simply becomes a natural extension of the gospel itself. Hence, Christ’s message must be expressed through love. As the Apostle Paul writes, “The only thing that counts is faith working through love” (Gal. 5:6 NRSV). Back in time, the apostolic Church understood the need to spread the Christian message not only through theological discourse of philosophical speculation but also through real and compassionate action. Any social issues which plagued the poor or needy, the apostles would certainly direct their attention towards them.

However, the apostles did not explicitly practice that attitude. The prophets, as we have previously witnessed, were similar harbingers of the gospel in action, albeit the pre-Christian gospel. Christianity is not a mold which can fit into a variety of political spectrums, philosophical systems, and other worldviews. It is not comparable to frosting on the cake of one’s life, or sprinkles on an ice cream cone. As a matter of fact, Christianity is the cake itself, and everything in our lives should revolve around our faith. That being said, the urgency of the message of the gospel and the need that it be proclaimed throughout the world are basic tenant of every Christian’s life. The same is intended by God to exist at the forefront of our mindset.

In the Old Testament, the Golden Rule was always an understood context. When Cain killed Abel, there were no Ten Commandants to discern the law of God, but God’s law is written in our hearts. Therefore, we do not have the excuse when it comes to being obedient to His commands. Thus, loving one as one would love himself was not a revolutionary ideal Christ ushered in. Additionally, the Levitical law exhorted the Hebrew people to “love your neighbor as yourself” (Lev. 19:18). But this was not the message for which Christ came to proclaim. The Golden Rule varies in every religion, so if Christ had simply been one of the many harbingers of love in the world, He would not have been very special. Instead of preaching that one should love one’s neighbor as one would love oneself, Jesus said, “I give you a new command, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another,” (Jn. 13:34 NRSV). Jesus’s command for us to love our neighbor is irrevocably intertwined with our faith in Him. If we are to follow Jesus, we are required to obey His every word—as simple as that.

Loving others as God Himself has expressed His love towards us is not an easy task. God is love (I Jn. 4:8). Naturally, Christ’s divine love transcends all that we are capable of offering Him in return; however, His command still stands as a transcendent goal: a perfect aim for us to pursue. Instead of pursuing happiness which entrances the world with its promises of riches and desire for luxury, Christians should forsake all worldly belongings. They must place on a pursuit of love.

Loving others and caring for the needy and the suffering are the gospel in action; it is the physical extension of a spiritual change within us. When we are being apathetic in the face of global suffering or when we shrug off evil in the world because the world is sinful and shall not be perfected until the grand eschaton, that means we are expressing apathy in the very face of the gospel’s corporeal extension. Such an action is almost similar to blaspheming the Holy Spirit, which is the unforgivable sin (Mk. 3:29). Therefore, we must hasten to do the work of Christ, to be His hands and feet in the world and to love those whom He came to die for. If we cannot care for our neighbor, how can we possibly expect Christ to care for us?

Therefore, the gospel should be expressed by every Christian in every place since it is the very foundation of the Christian religion and any alleviation of its message or expression spits in the very face of Christ and His work. We must obey God, lest we become like the unfaithful Israelites, who repeatedly failed to do good and fell into idolatry due to their lack of a compassionate spirit. Walter Rauschenbusch once wrote, “The Church is the social factor in salvation. It brings social forces to bear on evil. It offers Christ not only many human bodies and minds to serve as ministers of his salvation, but its own composite personality, with a collective memory stored with great hymns and Bible stories and deeds of heroism, with trained aesthetic and moral feelings, and with a collective will set on righteousness.”

The Church is God’s earthly tool. It is through the operation of the Church as both an institution and an organism—both as a corporeal entity and an ethereal people—that God draws all men to Himself. The Church possesses a great number of priests, prophets, and kings, all looking up towards the highest and holiest priest, prophet, and king, Jesus Christ, who gave us an important mission to “make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matt. 28:16-20 NRSV).

Studying the Word of God is about equipping yourself to live out in practical ways the standard of the Bible. Archbishop Jordan’s book, Prophet in the Marketplace is now available exclusively via the Book of the Month Club.

 

Not only does the Book of the Month Club provide a pathway to knowledge, wisdom and insight, it also sets you up to be in attendance at the Spring Session of Prophecology 2018: Birthing House: The Latter Rain, February 23-25, 2018.

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How is James’ book relevant to your life today?

AN IMPOSSIBLE PROMISE TO THE WORLD

In today’s society, the problem is not just about poverty; it is also about inequality and injustice, especially in the context of racism. Transforming the world into a racial inequality — and intolerance-free place was a personal advocacy borne out of my sense of responsibility. My strong sense of responsibility compelled me to call out to my fellowmen to take a stand and eradicate racism.  As I read my Bible, the urge was confirmed; the message I encountered that day was “So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin” (Jam. 4:16). I knew racial inequality and injustice were wrong, and I had to be the prophet in the marketplace to profess these wrongs and to call society to repentance.

Definitely, responsibility needed to start with me. I initiated the anti-racism movement in our community. Uncertainties came our way, but our impossible promise of transforming the world was to create a peaceful and racism-free environment ignited our passion and encouraged us to take the initiative. I took my stand as a leader of transformation; similarly, I urge the people of the present to take a stand. Initiate the change. Understand that we all have the responsibility to transform the world. Become the source of transformation of your future world.

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What is your impossible promise to the world?

BEING ACCOUNTABLE FOR YOUR BROTHERS & SISTER

Jesus spoke about the final judgment that awaits us—it is an inevitable event. With this final judgment, we are reminded of our purpose here on earth. How have we endeavored to advance God’s Kingdom? How have we played the part of the prophet in the marketplace? What have we contributed to society?

34 Then the king will say to those at his right hand, ‘Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; 35 for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, 36 I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.’ 37 Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? 38 And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing? 39 And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?’ 40 And the king will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me (Matthew 25:34-40, NRSV).

In his book Am I Still My Brother’s Keeper: Biblical Perspective On Poverty, Robert Wafawanaka highlights how Deuteronomy 15:4 envisions ancient Israel’s response to poverty. In this passage, Moses argues that there should be no poor among the Israelites because if the people are obedient to the Law of God, then the poor would not have existed. The premise is that community members are bound to take care of the needy members in society. This vision may seem idealistic, but it is true that it could have eliminated poverty among the Israelites if they all obeyed the Lord’s statutes.

There will, however, be no one in need among you, because the Lord is sure to bless you in the land that the Lord your God is giving you as a possession to occupy, if only you will obey the Lord your God by diligently observing this entire commandment that I command you today. (Deuteronomy 15:4-5 NRSV)

Poverty is a problem that has persisted over time because people have continued to disobey God’s commandments. In Deuteronomy, Moses reveals that if disobedience is present in people, the poverty will never cease to exist out in the land, “Since there will never cease to be some in need on the earth, I therefore command you, “Open your hand to the poor and needy neighbor in your land” (Dt. 15:11 NRSV). Poverty in Israel could only be solved if every Israelite would obey the Lord’s call to alleviate the plight of the poor.  The bible mandates the believers to care for the poor; caring for the poor was ingrained in the cultures of Babylon, Canaan, and Egypt—these are cultures which influenced the Israelite way of life.

Studying the Word of God is about equipping yourself to live out in practical ways the standard of the Bible. Archbishop Jordan’s book, Prophet in the Marketplace is now available exclusively via the Book of the Month Club.

 

Not only does the Book of the Month Club provide a pathway to knowledge, wisdom and insight, it also sets you up to be in attendance at the Spring Session of Prophecology 2018: Birthing House: The Latter Rain, February 23-25, 2018.

 

Go to and join the club now!

How do you think poverty connects with disobedience?

THE COSMOS AS A TEMPLE OF GOD

In the beginning, God created the entire universe; toward the end of His creative action, He called it good (Gen. 1:31). He placed Man into the universe and gave him stewardship over His creation (2:15). Since the Fall of Man, all of God’s good creation also fell due to their submission to humanity as steward. As Paul asserts, “For the creation was subjected to futility, not of its own will but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to decay and will obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. We know that the whole creation has been groaning in labor pains until now; and not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly while we wait for adoption, the redemption of our bodies” (Rom. 8:20-23 NRSV).

Based from the above passage, Paul taught that the entire cosmos was subjected to corruption upon the Adamic trespass. However, he advanced that through Christ’s personhood and His incarnation, the cosmos is no longer groaning in pain but is waiting for the fruition of the eschaton. Upon Christ’s Incarnation, the entire universe was affected by the entrance of God into the earth. A typological aspect of Christ’s incarnation is present in the narrative of the Old Testament temple.

In the Old Testament, God’s presence is told to have entered into a Temple so His people would sufficiently worship him. His presence would sanctify the building and the sanctuary and bring a redemptive aspect to the physical and material world. In the New Testament, God instead enters into the world by taking a body of flesh, sanctifying the world around Him, and bringing with Him into the universe a redemptive aspect of salvation by simply being who He was. The parallelism between Christ’s teaching that “as the lightning comes from the east and flashes as far as the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man” (Matt: 24:27-29) and the Old Testament instance of “the glory of the Lord [entering] the temple by the gate facing east,” (Ezek. 43:4) can be observed here. The typology is difficult to miss; the fact that Jesus entered into the world as God entered into the Jewish temple shows an intrinsically purifying nature to the corporeal universe around us. God, through the person of Jesus Christ his Son, is literally “making all things new” (Rev. 21:5).

The Temple mentioned in the Old Testament belongs to God; no priest would dare argue against that. Therefore, with the cosmos itself being the typological fulfillment of the Old Testament Temple in entering into the cosmos, the entire universe can be considered as God’s. This means that His divinity and holiness enter into it, hence purifying it and making it new. This means that the earth which we live in, the oxygen we breathe, the rivers which provide us water, the crops which we harvest, and the animals which give us meat, all belong to God. According to Matthew Henry, “God’s temple, his church on earth, [is] filled with his glory. His train, the skirts of his robes, filled the temple, the whole world, for it is all God’s temple. And yet he dwells in every contrite heart.” This implies that upon entering the world, God’s glory claims every inch of the world, seeking to purify it and restore it its natural state of goodness.

 

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What are the everyday things you see that reveal to you the glory of God?

THE CHRISTOLOGICAL IMMANENCE OF GOD

 

God’s transcendence is part of God’s nature which is unknowable to humanity in our present state. The face of God, so to speak, or the ability to behold God in all of His glory as He truly exists, is a facet of His transcendence. The very substance which constitutes God’s existence is beyond the realm of human speculation. The only way in which we can define God is describing that which He is not. He is immortal, which is to say, He is not mortal. He is infinite, which is to say, He is not finite. He is infallible, which is to say, He is not fallible. To understand aspects of God’s transcendent nature, we must use cataphatic terms to arrive at an accurate understanding of the one we worship in Spirit and in truth.

God’s immanence is best understood in light of the incarnation. When God took for himself a body of flesh, He eternally united His nature man’s; eventually, man became the perfect human person. Through this, what had been previously unknowable became partially knowable by man. Christian Christology itself has great a contribution to the salvific operation of God in the world because through Jesus Christ, God revealed His light to mankind, hence making the Incarnation of Christ to the Christian faith very crucial. God’s revelation flipped the darkness which the Old Testaments prophesied into a blazing light as seen on the Mount of Transfiguration, where “[Jesus] was transfigured before [His disciples], and his face shone like the sun, and his clothes became dazzling white,” (Matt. 17:2 NRSV). An immanent aspect of God’s nature became incarnated into flesh to descend into our reality and minister to us by guiding us in the ways and statutes of God. In short, God came to Man so Man could come to God.

Thus, God’s immanent theology in the Christian religion is notably distinct from the transcendent and ultimately unapproachable nature of God in other Abrahamic religions such as Judaism and Islam, both of which do not promote personal relationship with the incarnated immanence of God. John recorded the miraculous phenomenon involving the Incarnation as the Word becoming flesh and making its dwelling among us, hence “we have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth,” (Jn. 1:14 NRSV).

Now, the implications of God becoming flesh and dwelling among us lie exactly in what Christ’s Incarnation achieved as an end in itself. The Incarnation is the completion and fulfillment of the Abrahamic promise, of the Mosaic Law, and of the prophecies. In the incarnate person of Jesus Christ, man receives from God the highest priest, the holiest king, and the final prophet. God’s coming into the reality of man is a divine manifestation of His love for us, His creations, and this love extends throughout the entire cosmos.

Studying the Word of God is about equipping yourself to live out in practical ways the standard of the Bible. Archbishop Jordan’s book, Prophet in the Marketplace is now available exclusively via the Book of the Month Club.

Not only does the Book of the Month Club provide a pathway to knowledge, wisdom and insight, it also sets you up to be in attendance at the Spring Session of

Prophecology 2018: Birthing House: The Latter Rain, February 23-25, 2018.

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How does the coming of Jesus reveal God’s divine love for you?