Friday Morning Manna June 21, 2019

Nathaniel Fajardo

The Four Different Natures Contrasted

In the Bible there are four distinctly separate natures that follow this descending order: divine, angelic, human, and animal. They are never interchangeable, divisible, or evolutionary.

The Divine Nature. The Godhead, comprised of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are alone divine. To them exclusively belongs and emanates from mysterious life—original, unborrowed and underived. Thus, life is the greatest manifestation of God. These “three who are One” (1 John 3: 4) are alone immortal, uncreated, eternal, having no beginning and no end. Without God there is no life and without life there is nothing, not even void, much less a “dark hole.” God in Christ is the great I AM. “I AM that I AM” means not subject to time nor to space, circumstance, or anything. As Jesus declared to the unbelieving Jews: “Verily I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM” not “I was.” (John 8: 58).

But in “the mystery of godliness” (1 Tim. 3: 16) the incarnated Creator, filling in as fallen man’s Substitute and surety, became subject to His own law else He need not have died as the Lamb of God at Calvary in order to satisfy the demands of His own eternal and immutable law  which had been transgressed by the first human Adam, not the second divine-human Adam. The wages of sin is death. Again, God never ceased to be God when He became a Man. All living things below the divine nature of the Godhead are their creatures, following this order:

Angelic Nature

There are different orders of angels given in the Bible. Those that stand in the presence of God (Luke 1: 19), beholding God’s face (Matt. 18: 10). They move swiftly, faster than lightning (Eze. 1: 14; Dan. 9: 20-22). God’s and Christ’s “chariots” are composed of angels (Ps. 68: 17) as well as those which transported the translated Elijah to heaven, that bore the risen Savior to heaven at His ascension, and will bear the eternally redeemed on the resurrection morning to the New Jerusalem in heaven, etc. Seraphim have their appointed work (Isa. 6: 2, 6). Cherubim were stationed at both ends of the mercy-seat (Exo. 25: 16-18). God dwells between the cherubim (Ps. 80: 1). Before his fall Lucifer (Satan) was a covering cherub (Eze. 28: 14). Because they are numberless, they are described as “clouds,” numbered “ten thousand times ten thousand and thousands upon thousands” (Rev. 5: 11, etc.), all were created as “spirits” and designated as “His ministers a flame of fire” (Heb. 1: 7; Ps. 104: 4). Gabriel is the angel of prophecy.

Human Nature

Only Adam and Eve and all their offspring are human, and only they were made in the image and likeness of the Creator. Sin and its curse have progressively marred and in fact, almost obliterated that image and likeness of the Creator in man today, six thousand years after the fall. The plan of redemption was designed to restore to every penitent sinner who humbly surrender all to Christ, are genuinely born-again as baptized by water and the spirit and then walk in the newness of spiritual life in the fallen flesh, even as Enoch walked with God and pleased God.

In the unparalleled, incomparable, never-to-be repeated supreme act of condescension in the wonderful mystery of the incarnation, God Creator literally descended from heaven, Paradise itself and its realms of glory that “eye hath not yet seen nor ear heard” to our sin-darkened, cursed, fallen earth.  with its plighted, decrepit and rebellious inhabitants. This alone was suffering untold. No one else would or could ever suffer this but Christ alone.

He left His throne of indescribable glory, the immediate presence of His Father, the purest and most sublime adoration, love and devotion of the mighty heavenly beings, to mingle with the undeserving, plighted, decrepit, wretched, miserable and rebellious human beings. This alone was suffering untold. No one else would or could ever suffer this but Christ alone.

But in the mystery of mysteries, like man, human beings He had created in His image and likeness yet “a little lower than angels” (Ps. 8: 4-6; Heb. 2: 6-8), He, likewise in the incarnation, unquestioningly and willingly submitted to God the Father (as Isaac humbly submitted to his father Abraham to be sacrificed) to be also “made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone. For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons into glory, to make the author of their salvation perfect through sufferings (Heb. 2: 9-11).” This alone was suffering untold. No one else would or could ever suffer this but Christ alone.

     “Inasmuch then as the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He likewise shared (partook, KJV) in the same, that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, and release those who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage [of the fear of death}.” Heb. 2: 14, 15.

     “Therefore, in all things He had to be made like unto His brethren [His brethren are not angels nor animals but human beings only who are made of flesh and blood in His image and likeness], that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation [blood atonement] for the sins of the people. “[Note: “The life of the flesh is in the blood.” Lev. 17: 11; also, “without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sins.” Heb. 9: 22].

      “For in that He Himself has suffered, being tempted, He is able to aid those who are tempted.” Verse 18.  

Without temptation there could be no suffering. Notice from the foregoing that the incarnation of Christ into that one-of-a-kind, once and for all human nature, was subjected to the temptations for this type of humanity alone, the sufferings of which were that of that humanity alone that no other human nature will ever be subjected to, thus never suffer. This was to specifically enable Him to become a faithful and merciful High Priest in things pertaining to God.  To whom can this apply but to Jesus Christ alone, the Word made flesh, Prince Immanuel, being interpreted, God with us. Thus, any mortal who dares claim to occupy this High Priestly office on earth or heaven, and the exclusive authority that comes with it, is without a doubt, not only a counterfeit but undeniably antichrist.

No faithful, commandment-keeping saint of “every nation, kindred, tongue and people,” while still living, conscious and rational, is in any way shape, form, or time above or beyond temptation. Only in the first death, as mortals, are they finally placed forever beyond temptation, trial, tribulation and all suffering while still on earth. Yes, that’s the only time. For  they “died in Christ” and thus sleep the sleep of death, which to the Christian is, as it were an interlude, a moment of complete and impenetrable darkness and silence, knowing and feeling nothing, their mortal bodies of corruptible flesh, having returned to the dust of the ground and their breathe of life having returned to the Life giver—they ceased to be a living soul–until the grand resurrection morning!      

I have to point out something really interesting if you haven’t already noticed it yet in your Bible readings/studies regarding Hebrews 2: 16 inparticular. The N.K.J.V. is worded differently from that of the Authorized Version or the K.J.V.

       First, the K.J.V.: “For verily He took not on Him the nature of angels; but He took on Him the seed of Abraham.” The “seed” of Abraham being the fallen nature of man with its propensities, are passed on to his progeny by the power of heredity—i.e., if it the humanity of Christ that is being referred to. 

       Now, the N.K.J.V.: “For indeed He does not give aid to angels, but He does give aid to the seed of Abraham.”  This accords with verse 18 of the same version that says: “For in that He Himself has suffered, being tempted, He is able to aid those who are tempted.”

But both versions convey and amplify the truths that the nature of man and angels are different; that Christ did not partake of angel nature but human nature, thus incarnate (from the Latin in carnis, in the flesh, that is subject to temptation, and having suffered the temptations that all man are tempted with and never yielded, not even in thought, causing Him untold suffering in the process, He is able to aid or succor fallen man, not fallen angels or demons.   

Also, the italicized words on the K.J.V are in the original. The translators of King James indicated the words they believed belonged to the passages by honestly placing such words in italics. Thus, we know. Other versions that employ the dynamic equivalence translation don’t do so.  

Animal Nature 

God’s wisdom is revealed in the animal world for “the sovereignty of God involves fullness of blessings to all created beings,” which includes animals of course. While animals have brains, they do not have a mind or a conscience. They cannot tell between right or wrong and cannot be judged by the same law by which both man and angels are judged. In Eden, they obeyed Adam and Eve. In fact, it was Adam who gave names to all of them, which names and classifications endure even today. They obey God’s law by instinct not by reason.  They can feel and react do not experience the human “change of heart” or moral transformation of character. They are not free moral agents as angels and men are. They are not even amoral for they belong to a sphere where such is not applicable. They are without reason or intellect. God created for a different reason—to serve man.  But note carefully the following:

      Of Angels and Animals. –“The animals were created to serve man, but he has no right to cause them pain by harsh treatment or cruel exaction. It is because of man’s sin that ‘the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together’ Rom. 8: 22. Suffering and death were entailed, not only upon the human race, but upon the animals.”

      “Few realize as they should the sinfulness of abusing animals or leaving them to suffer from neglect. He who created man made the lower animals also, and ‘His tender mercies are over all His works.’ Ps. 145: 9.

     “Surely, then, it becomes man to seek to lighten, instead of increasing, the weight of suffering which his transgression has brought upon God’s creatures. He who will abuse animals because he has them in his power, is both a coward and a tyrant. A disposition to cause pain, whether to our fellow-men or to the brute creation, is satanic. Many do not realize that their cruelty will ever be known, because the poor dumb animals cannot reveal it. But could the eyes of these men be opened, as were those of Balaam, they would see an angel of God standing as a witness, to testify against them in the courts above. A record goes up to heaven [as recorded by every individual’s guardian angel], and a day is coming when judgment will be pronounced against those who abuse God’s creatures.” – Patriarchs and Prophets, pp. 443.

Thus, all animals have a ministry appointed them (Ed 103). They minister to some other life (DA 20). Only the corrupted and perverted “wisdom of man which is foolishness to God” has tried to make animals like humans, elevating them to a higher sphere without the Creator and lawgiver’s authority, attributing to them not only human actions, properties and tendencies but in fact, asserting, against God’s creation that humans evolved not from angels, but from animals as our primordial ancestors.       

    Of Angels and Man. –  “Perhaps the most definitive text regarding angels is Heb. 1: 14. From man’s standpoint, angels’ ministry to man is most significant. Eternity will reveal the breadth of the functions of these beings in relation to the universe. Man will in eternity be ‘equal to angels’ Luke 20: 36; cf. Matt. 22: 30) [no longer “lower than angels!”]. The relationship between angels and men in the plan of redemption indicates the possibility of a unique relationship throughout eternity.” – SDA Bible Dictionary, Commentary Reference Series. Vol. 8, p. 45.

                                                   The Ministry of Angels to Man   

     “Every redeemed one will understand the ministry of angels in his own life. The angel who was his guardian from his earliest moment [of life]; the angel who watched his steps, and covered his head in the day of peril; the angel who was with him in the valley of the shadow of death, who marked his resting-place, who was first to greet him in the resurrection morning,– what will it be to hold converse with him, and to learn the history of divine interposition in the individual life in heavenly cooperation in very work for humanity!

      “All the perplexities of life’s experiences will then be made plain. Where to us have appeared only confusion and disappointment, broken purposes and thwarted plans, will be seen a grand, overruling, victorious purpose, a divine harmony.”- Education, p. 305.

When the four different natures, the divine, angelic, human and animal, and the spheres and functions exclusive to each and their relationship to one another, are properly understood, as revealed in God’s Word, many will be able to break from the chains of ignorance, superstition, confusion, and the numerous doctrinal errors that long have long held them in vise-like grip!

(Continued next week)