Living in the Two Hearts

My Spiritual Insights and Musings

Coming Soon: Chapter 6: Part I, On Earth As It Is In Heaven…

Posted by Anne Elizabeth on January 17, 2013

The Prayer of the Church

The Prayer of the Church

CHRISTIAN PRAYER: Monday, Week I, Evening Prayer: READING: Col 1: 9b-13 (emphasis added, with commentary)

[Brothers and Sisters], may you attain full knowledge of God’s Will through perfect wisdom and spiritual insight.  Then you will lead a life worthy of the Lord and pleasing to Him in every way.

You will multiply good works of every sort and grow in the knowledge of God.

Does not Jesus say that they will recognize us by our “fruits” – that is the GOOD that we do in His Name (cf Mt 7:17) By the same token, those who bear bad fruit will end up in the fire (v19)

By the might of His Glory you will be endowed with the strength needed to stand fast, even to endure joyfully whatever may come, giving thanks to the Father for having made you worthy to share the lot of the saints in light.  He rescued us from the power of darkness and brought us into the Kingdom of His Beloved Son.

The Word of the Lord … Thanks be to God!

RESPONSORY:  Lord, you alone can heal me, for I have grieved you by my sins.

***IMPORTANT*** If you haven’t already read Mark Mallett’s writing: Mystery Babylon, I highly recommend reading it before continuing on with this next installment.  The mirroring images are stunning, especially as I, Barber, and Mallett have consistently compared the current situation of the United States with that of Ancient Israel.  Ps, you can also purchase a copy of the painting featured on this blog at Mark’s homesite.  This is one of my favorite ones!

Index of Terms

"After this I looked, and lo, an open door in heaven ! ~Rev 4:1

“After this I looked, and lo, an open door in heaven ! ~Rev 4:1

Rev 4: 1- 6:17 (emphasis added)

Revelation 4: 1 After this I looked, and lo, in heaven an open door!  And the first voice, which I heard speaking to me like a trumpet, said, ‘Come up hither, and I will show you what must take place after this.’”

With the words, ‘Come up hither’, John is taken up into heaven…John has now moved from seeing ‘what is’ – that is the [current] situation with the seven churches – to ‘what will take place hereafter’ – the fall of the harlot city (cf. Rev 1:19).(Barber, 81)

The imagery that will transpire for the next several verses parallel that with the prophets Daniel, Isaiah (Isaiah 6) and Ezekiel (Ezek 1-2), and what they saw in their visions concerning the Son of Man and the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple.  Mind you, that temple destruction was in their time, about 586 BC, for Isaiah and Ezekiel; whereas Daniel did see to John’s day and the time leading up to it.  Yet Barber does make mention that:

“The Book of Revelation closely follows the pattern in the Book of Ezekiel…[for] like John, [he] had foreseen the fall of Jerusalem and the establishment of the ‘new’ Jerusalem.  It makes sense, then, that John would draw on the Book of Ezekiel so heavily…”

It’s like when you’ve read a really good book and years later the events in your life seem familiar because they mirror what you’ve read so long ago. 

However, it can be said that if these scriptures demonstrate anything it would again be this: SACRED SCRIPTURE IS TIMELESS; as well as man’s flawless ability to repeat his own history.

Two Prophets of God - One Message...

Two Prophets of God – One Message…

On page 82, of Barber’s book, he lists fifteen examples of parallels between Daniel 7 and Rev 4-5.  He also mentions these examples are only “a few”, indicating that there are too many to discount the OBVIOUS connection between these two prophecies

He also gives us a rather impressive list (pg 83, with 20 in this one!) of the parallels between Ezek 1-2 to passages found in the Book of Revelation.  It’s quite fascinating!

The concluding result – because I’m not going to list the fifteen examples here – is that it is CHRIST who fulfills ALL PROPHECY, for it is Him who “receives the kingdom and gives it to the saints.” (Barber, 82)

And WHY did God take the trouble to give these prophets these visions and understanding?  The reason is just as important for US as it was for them, and that is…

“…so that [we] would know that the temple on earth was only a penultimate.  The true temple is the heavenly city above.” (Ibid.)

For Christ has entered, not into a sanctuary made with [human] hands, a copy of the true one, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God on our behalf.” (Heb 9:24)

And since we are talking in Temple Terms, which must also mean that the Liturgy will continue to present itself in all its heavenly form!

"Adoration of the Lamb" By Jan van Eyck (1390-1441)

“Adoration of the Lamb” By Jan van Eyck (1390-1441)

WE BEGIN THE LITURGY WITH THE THRONE OF GOD

Revelation 4: 2-3 makes a description of the Throne of God and what John sees.  What he SEES mirrors exactly what Ezekiel saw in his vision of heaven (cf. Ezek 1: 26-28) which has a significance beyond the mere fact that they mirror each other.  Barber tells us of the “stones of jasper and carnelian” that:

[T]hey were found in the Garden of Eden, the original earthly sanctuary (Ezek 28:13)…The rainbow, seen both by John and Ezekiel(1:28), signifies ‘new creation’ imagery in its connection with the Flood of Noah (Gen 9:13).  (Barber 84)

So we begin in God’s Holy presence… hmmm, when we enter the Sanctuary at Church are we not also in the presence of the Throne of God as He resides – Body, Blood, Soul, and divinity – in the Holy Eucharist? 

If we are then, how can we enter into His presence making all sorts of NOISE, talking on the cell phone, talking a mile-a-minute with our neighbor, looking around for the best and worst dressed, and FLAT-OUT IGNORING the God, Savior and King before us?!

Revelation 4: 4-5 we see 24 elders around the Throne of God, “clad in white” with “golden crowns upon their heads”. 

This represents the priesthood set up by David (1Chron 24-25) to serve and sing in the temple”, and “the saints who have passed the test by offering their lives in priestly sacrifice and…now…[receive] the ‘crown of life’. (Ibid.)

This is the fulfillment of the calling of Israel to be “a kingdom of priests (cf. Ex 19:6), for the most High God, and then later for us to also…

“…you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s own people, that you may declare the wonderful deeds of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.” (1Peter 2:9, emphasis added)

"I saw seven golden lampstands, and in the midst...one like a Son of man..." ~Rev 1:13

“I saw seven golden lampstands, and in the midst…one like a Son of man…” ~Rev 1:13

The continuing symbolism of “peals of thunder”, “flashes of lightening”, “seven torches of fire”, “seven spirits of God” are reference to that which we’ve already seen in chapter one, giving further credence that John truly was in the presence of the Throne of God – Who IS Jesus. 

We also have here an example of the presence of God, the Holy Spirit, “in and through the Church” as He appears to rest upon the seven lampstands.  Recalling of course that “the seven spirits” represents the Holy Spirit and the seven lampstands represents the 7 Churches which represent the entire church.  See previous chapter.

Matthew, Mark, Luke, & John

Matthew, Mark, Luke, & John

Revelation 4: 6-7 The glassy sea and “four living creatures” bring to mind Solomon’s temple that housed a bronze laver before the Holy of Holies (cf. Ex 30: 17-21), and the four Gospel writers represented by a – man, lion, ox, and eagle.  Here’s what Barber tells us:

Matthew is represented by the Man, since his Gospel begins with Jesus’ human genealogy.  The Lion stands for Mark, whose account begins with a voice in the wilderness, where lions live and roam.  Luke is symbolized by the Ox, since his Gospel begins and ends with the temple, where oxen are slaughtered.  Finally, the Eagle denotes John, whose Gospel “sores” to the heights in contemplation of Christ’s divinity. (Barber, 86, see footnote 7 for some more information, emphasis added)

During the course of the celebration of the Holy Mass, we hear from an Old Testament writer followed by a New Testament reading (often one of Paul’s many letters), but then conclude with a reading from one of the four Gospel writers. 

Our celebration of the Mass, therefore, continues on with the heavenly liturgy as we sit, stand, and worship in the presence of the Most High God receiving His very WORD.

HOLY, HOLY, HOLY

Revelation 4:8-10 The four living creatures suddenly take on a different appearance from the previous verse.  Now, as well has having “full of eyes in front and behind” “around and within”, they now each have “six wings”.  This brings into play Ezekiel’s account of what he saw in heaven (Ezek 1: 5-14), and how he related his description of them.

Ezekiel tells us, [these] are angels, ‘cherubim’, upon whom God ‘rides’ (Ezek 10: 14-22).  Their description calls to mind the ‘seraphim’ seen by Isaiah, who also have ‘six wings’(Is 6:2). (Barber, 86, 87)

They work as God’s agents, seeing all things and reporting them to Him…Like the seraphim in Isaiah’s vision, the cherubim sing, ‘Holy, Holy, Holy’(Is 6:3).(Barber, 87)

When these “four living creatures” sing “Holy, Holy, Holy”, and “glory, honor, and thanks to Him who is seated on the throne”, the 24 elders fall down in worship, casting down their crowns, and singing.

When we sing “Holy, Holy, Holy” in the Mass, Jesus is elevated in the Holy Eucharist.  We see Him and WORSHIP HIM, and then we ‘fall down’ by going to our knees to make ready to beg God for the forgiveness of our sins by echoing the words of the centurion:

Lord, I am not worthy that You should enter under my roof.  So only say the words and my soul shall be healed. (cf. Mt 8:8)

The Apocalypse: "the book of the heavenly liturgy...standard for [Church's] own liturgy." ~Cardinal Ratzinger (Pope Benedict XVI), "The Spirit of the Liturgy", c.2000.

The Apocalypse: “the book of the heavenly liturgy…standard for [Church’s] own liturgy.” ~Cardinal Ratzinger (Pope Benedict XVI), “The Spirit of the Liturgy”, c.2000.

Which brings to question: How can some bishops require their parishes to instruct that their people stand at that moment?!?!  When the liturgy of heaven is messed with, and our worship of the Most High God is affected, what JUST JUDGMENT will fall upon those religious rulers?  Jesus was quite clear…

“They do all their deeds to be seen by men…they love the place of honor at feasts [can we say, Al Smith Dinner]  and best seats in the synagogues [place of worship, aka churches & cathedrals], and salutations in the market places…whoever exalts himself will be humbled…

But woe to you…because you shut the kingdom of heaven against men; for you neither enter yourselves, nor allow those who would enter to go in

Woe to you…for you are like whitewashed tombs, which outwardly appear beautiful, but within they are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness.

So you also outwardly appear righteous to men, but within you are full of hypocrisy and iniquity…You serpents, you brood of vipers, how are you to escape being sentenced to hell?” Mt 23: 5a, 6–7a, 12a, 13b, 27-28, 33

In the Mass, Heaven itself touches down to earth.  We participate in the very same Heavenly liturgy the angels and saints celebrate… when we sing ‘Holy, Holy, Holy’, we are joining in the heavenly chorus.” (Barber, 101, emphasis added)

In heaven, Christ still bears the marks that He “received at the house of My friends” (Zech 13:6c), because John describes Him as, “I saw a Lamb standing, as though it had been slain (cf. Rev 5:6)…

But He was pierced for our offenses, crushed for our sins.  Upon Him was the chastisement that makes us whole, by His stripes we were healed.” Isaiah 53:5

And did not Jesus appear to the disciples after His Resurrection from the dead and show them His wounds, even allowing Thomas to place his fingers into the nail holes and his hand into the Savior’s side (cf. Lk 24:39; Jn 20:24-25)?  

So when we speak of the “Re-presentation of the Sacrifice”, we are speaking of the moment Jesus allowed Himself to be nailed to the Cross (cf. Jn 10: 17-18).  Which means, the celebration of the Holy Mass (the Re-presentation of the Sacrifice) is MORE THAN mere worship, it is the participation with ALL OF HEAVEN and is…

Standing before the throne of God as the Lamb who had been slain…[while He] continues to re-present His offering to the Father for all time. (Barber, 199)

Another reason why man cannot mess with the Liturgy of this Divine Worship, because to do so is to stand before God without reverence and awe and placing yourself into indifference and thus calling upon yourself condemnation.

Jewish Historian, Josephus, writes of the people of Jerusalem before its destruction, [T]hey seem to me to have cast a reproach upon God Himself, as if He were too slow in punishing them.  (Ibid.)

How much MORE could this apply to the “modern-day Israelites” – practicing Catholics and clergy – who strive and succeed to mess with God’s divine Liturgy for their own purposes and agendas leaving many of our churches today empty and void of the fullness of God’s divine presence.  How much more will God’s judgment come upon those responsible?  Especially when considering that…

Jesus fulfills [Daniel’s Vision] of the son of man through the liturgy [See Dan 7: 13-14]…in the Liturgy of the Eucharist…Christ bestows the kingdom [His Kingdom] to the Church…[and in] the liturgical prayers of the Mass…the kingdom comes with the King. (Barber, 93; See Lk 22: 29-30)

No wonder there is great rejoicing around the throne of the One who IS and who WAS and who will forever BE as He receives the Scroll to open its seals and begin the judgment of God, a judgment we – mankind – have brought down upon ourselves.

…as if He were too slow in punishing them. (Barber, 199, excerpt)

In the meantime…

Revelation 5:13 And I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea, and all therein, saying, ‘To him who sits upon the throne and to the Lamb be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever!’ 14 And the four living creatures said, ‘Amen!’ and the elders fell down and worshiped.”

So too must we come before the Lord with exultation and humility in our worship of the one TRUE God.  Because when He begins to break those seals…

…as Jesus opens the seven scrolls, things begin to unravel on earth[because] what happens in the liturgy of heaven has earth-shaking consequences. Throughout the book, the events on earth are affected and EVEN effected by the actions of Jesus with the angels and saints in the heavenly liturgy.(Barber, 93, emphasis added)

Did you know in the Catholic Mass, at the last elevation before we repent one final time for our sins, the entire congregation says the great “AMEN!” at the elevation of Jesus?

And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.” (Jn 3: 14-15)

UpNext

Up Next… Chapter 6, Part II: Six of the Seven Seals

Recommended Reading:

Chapter 5 Part I and Part II

Chapter 4: Part I: Revealing the Son of Man
Chapter 4: Part II: Coming on the Clouds

Chapter 3: Heavenly Liturgy and the Holy Mass

Chapter 2: 4 Senses of Sacred Scripture

Mark Mallett:

Mystery Babylon

Advertisements

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

 
%d bloggers like this: