Raising the Standard – Pastor's Corner
Last week I stressed that spiritual adoption means that God places us in His Body for service and that He gives us a responsibility that we control in His Name. Today, I’d like to dive really deep into what this means for Bride of Christ as we approach the Millennium. Today we’ll study:
- The link between spiritual adoption and the Rapture
- Why Satan will be bound 1,000 years (the Millennium)
- Our role with Christ during this time period.
I’m excited to study this with you and I hope you are too!
What does Adoption have to do with the Rapture?
Let me start by quoting Paul in 1 Corinthians 15:50 where he says “flesh and blood shall not inherit the kingdom of God.” The Lord Jesus drove this point home when He taught Nicodemus that we must be born again (1 John 3:3-6) because a sexual birth can’t produce a child of God.
Our New Birth brings us spiritually into condition with God (see Adoption Study #1) but our bodies are still full of corruption.
This must change.
Referring to nature, Paul writes,
And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.Romans 8:23
Now this is where I believe some get confused and put off all adoption into the future. But Paul here isn’t talking about our soul’s status before God—he is talking about our body. Whereas here we struggle with aches, and combat viruses like COVID, our body will one day receive the acknowledgement of its placing as a son or daughter of God just as our soul receives its acknowledgement when God places us into His Spiritual Body for service.
In other words, we are groaning and crying out for Christ’s return because then, like nature, we will be changed to have a perfect body that will never age, get sick, or die. This is the adoption of our body—not our soul. That has already happened when Christ placed us for service in His spiritual body.
Adoption here is the moment that we stop groaning and we receive the condition we ought to have enjoyed all along. It is the moment where nature recognizes us as supreme lords that rule this world in the place of our Heavenly Father. It is the moment when we regain the supernatural abilities that Adam possessed, and Jesus demonstrated, but we robbed of by our fallen birth.
Again, Paul prophesies the things that are to be.
For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the working by which He is able even to subdue all things to Himself.Philippians 3:20-21
This does not happen at death for death takes a Christian to a temporary body (a theophany according to 2 Corinthians 5:1). Remember, those who go to be with the Lord “sigh and cry” wondering how long until they can come back to Earth (Rev. 6:10).
When Christ returns, then the children of God receive the adoption of their bodies. Take some time to pause and think about this. Compare it to John the Revelator who wrote,
Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is.1 John 3:2
Pause and think about this. When you’re ready, pick back up here.
Okay, so to drive home my first point, there is coming an adoption of our body (not our soul) in which we will have a body that will be similar to Christ’s at the moment of transfiguration (Matthew 17:1-8). You see, prophet after prophet in the New Testament understood that there was coming a time that nature itself would recognize the authority of the adopted children of God.
What’s everything waiting on? What’s the whole creation waiting for? The manifestations of the sons of God. It’s waiting for the Church to become into its position. Who was the son of God, when Adam, where was his domain? The earth. He, he had domain over the earth. Is that right? [Congregation says, “Amen.”—Ed.]
He wasn’t Elah, Elah, Elohim then; He was Jehovah. See? That is, “I am God, and I’ve made some lesser ones under Me. And I have give them a dominion. And in their domain, the dominion under them, is the earth.” Man had dominion over the earth. And all the whole creation is waiting for the sons of God to be manifested. Oh!
60-0522M – Adoption #3
Rev. William Marrion Branham
In that day our bodies will be changed to wield the authority that God will entrust to us.
“What authority?” you ask. The authority to carry out His commands and rule over this world (and possibly others) as He entrusted to Adam. This is yet another reason why the Rapture is necessary—we cannot fulfill the original commission in this feeble flesh. We need something higher, something divine.
At the Rapture, we are changed to a theophany, and when Christ returns, we receive a glorified body. But we’ll go into details on that another time, Lord willing.
Why will Satan be bound?
Satan will be bound during the Millennium because there is no one for him to work through. We, who were once his slaves in sin, rule over him and sin when we are born of the Spirit. During the Millennium and beyond, the Bride will rule over this world. How can Satan tempt or rule when the sons of God have dominion?
Nothing will be out of order. We will enforce the law of God and nature will willingly humble itself to the leadership of the redeemed. Satan, the one who brought death to man and nature, who turned animal against animal, will be scorned according to Isaiah 14:16-18.
Now, he tries to make us fear him as he bluffs us and attacks our mind. But let us remember that we have already overcome him (1 John 4:4) and we are pressing the battle to the final victory when the spiritual will be manifested and the devil will be our captive (Rev. 20:1-10).
Take some time to think about that before we move into our final segment for today.
How does adoption impact our role with Christ in the Millennium?
I said previously that adoption is a service as well as rulership role. That is true. We are placed in the Body of Christ to serve and are given authority within our role, just as the priests, prophets, singers, and righteous kings of the Old Testament had their specific levels of authority and duty.
Just as we spiritually are placed with authority over a specific area (spiritual gifts, the ministry, the career God has chosen for us or our domestic relationships etc), so will we have specific authority in the world that is to come.
Didn’t Jesus promise us, “To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne (Rev 3:21).” ? We see here again the parables He taught of the servants who used their talents (responsibilities/callings) wisely and received rulership under the king’s dominion (see Luke 19:11-27).
To the Bride is given the privilege of ruling with Him, not because She is worthy humanly speaking, but because Her character meets His standards for She is part of Him. In recognizing the sincerity of our faith, Christ places us in His Body (or adopts us).
Throughout this life’s journey, we must remain faithful to His calling, giving him interest on the talents (Luke 19) that He has laid in our hands. At His return to Earth, we will receive the adoption of our bodies and usher in a thousand year ruling period in which the Earth will be repopulated and Satan will be bound.
But then comes the really good part—the Eternal world and the New Jerusalem.
Lord willing, we’ll get into that some other time.
- The adoption of our body is different than our spiritual adoption now. It occurs when Christ returns as King with His Bride.
- Satan will be bound during that Millennium for the Righteous (Mrs. Jesus Christ) will hold the Earth under Her control in His Name.
- Christ has promised that we will rule with Him and, to do so, we must receive a body more infinitely glorious than anything we can imagine.