The Kingdom of Heaven is at Hand

   
 
   
 

Introduction†

   
 

   
 

THE KINGDOM OF

HEAVEN

IS AT HAND

Biblical Translations Used 

     Unless otherwise specified, Bible quotes in this book are taken from the TANAKH, a new translation published in 1985, according to the Traditional Hebrew Text.

     Next in frequency used is The Amplified Bible published in 1962, according to both the Greek and Hebrew scriptures. The Amplified Bible offers a range of nuances in meaning that are given side by side for the readerís own discretion.

     Next in frequency used are the traditional King James Version and also the Septuagint, the Greek-based text from which Jesus studied, as told in the Urantia Book.

     This spectrum of translations has been crucial in obtaining the full range of possible interpretations that are consistent with the meaning of the original texts.

About Prophecy 

     Isaiah tells us that Godís ways are not manís ways. Godís words, the words of true prophecy, are also not like man's words. Godís words start as small seedlings and over time grow, give off branches, form buds, and finally, burst into bloom. Just so, the word "Israel" starts out as the tiny seed of one man named Abraham, but through the ages, the word "Israel" grows, changes, and finally bursts forth into the brotherhood of all mankind.

     Words of prophecy often have past, present, and future connotations. Each word demands tremendous respect and study of all the contexts of its usage. Reverence for the source of prophecy is the key to its study, for it is God who must lead our minds into the understanding of what He himself has inspired? Without the indwelling spirit there would be no prophecy and no interpretation of prophecy. But reason and the scientific method are also critical for the elimination of error, and for the building of a strong foundation from whence inspired intuition may leap safely. Therefore, both reason and faith are necessary for the complete appreciation of prophecy, just as they are for the full appreciation of all other phenomena.

About the Author

     This book is an outgrowth of a lifelong search for truth. My formal education is in science. My religious education is the result of three books: The Urantia Book, The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson, and the Bible (in chronological order). This book is woven out of these three strands.

     As I knew nothing about prophecy interpretation, this book grew out of an intensive study of The Old Testament prophets, 1Enoch, the Dead Sea Scrolls, and The Complete Works of Emily Dickinson. Many of the ideas that emerged from this study were wholly foreign and surprising to me as they may also be to you. For example, I believed, as a scientist, that predictive prophecy was impossible. The first time I read the Old Testament prophets, I understood practically nothing. I could not see how I would ever comprehend those utterances. Slowly, I realized that I had overlooked this source as a result of many, deeply ingrained prejudices and assumptions that have turned out to be false in the light of further analyhsis. And so, little by little, step by step, the meanings and values emerged for me from the scriptural texts.

     This book has been in circulation both in manuscript and electronic form since the end of 1999, almost four years ago now. The true test of prophecy is the march of time and the historical events that are unfolded inour lives. So far the tenets and explanations provided by this book are passing the test of time with remarkable accuracy. I continue to believe that The Kingdom of Heaven is at Hand offers the most complete understanding of our troubled world that exists today. I feel confident that these truths will stand the future test of time because they belong not to me but to God Himself. I also believe that They have been given to man for his edification, guidance, and use. As always, each of us must decide whether or not we avail ourselves of the information that He has so generously provided.

About The Urantia Book 

     Some of this book refers to concepts and facts contained in The Urantia Book. TheUrantia Book was published in 1955. Its origin remains a mystery. After twenty years of research on this remarkable text, I consider its information to be authoritative and of the highest quality possible. It is available on the Web at www.urantiabook.com in a searchable format. It is also available in some bookstores and some libraries, as well as through the Urantia Foundation and the Urantia Fellowship, its two supporting networks of readers.

     The Urantia Book is embraced at present by only a few, but I believe it will eventually be universally known and studied. If we are tempted to reject The Urantia Book based on its present lack of popular and scholarly success, we should remember that Jesus himself, a divine revelation of unsurpassable magnitude, was rejected and unrecognized, except for a very small contingent of devoted followers who, after his death, set out and changed the world. If Jesus were among us today, would our media portray him fairly? Would our politicians embrace him? Would we ourselves accept him in the face of negative media coverage, slander, and rejection by the power elite? Would our scholars predict his coming or recognize his value? Truth is always a threat to those who use power to further their own ends. Truth dispels the confusion of deceit and lays it bare for all to see. Is this world ready for that? Are we?

     For our specific purposes here, suffice it to say that The Urantia Book contains much new information regarding Jesus and his gospel of the "kingdom of heaven," as well as the mysterious Melchizedek, the "priest of the Most High" in Genesis. This new information has enabled an expanded understanding of sacred scripture and prophecy, which is the subject matter of this book. The uninitiated reader should be able to understand this book even with no prior familiarity with the somewhat alien concepts and terminology of the Urantia Book. In fact, such a reader sill come to understand much about the Urantia Book as a result of reading this book.

About this Book 

     This book presents a new and unified interpretation of the Old Testament Prophets, the Dead Sea Scrolls, 1Enoch, and the Urantia Book. As these interpretations were uncovered, it became clear that they were relevant for todayís world.

     I hope this book will be a firsthand experience of reading original prophecy as well as an interpretation thereof. Toward that goal, much original scripture is included so that it can be read along with my interpretations that follow. It is always my goal to let the reader examine the facts and to decide for him or herself the meanings of the verses presented. Truth will always bear up, even under the most searching of analyses. Ideally, the books of prophecy discussed should also be available to the reader for more in-depth consultation when needed.

     The length of the book is mostly accounted for by a generous presentation of quoted material from the various sources discussed. I believe that the careful reader will develop a broad understanding of all the sources discussed and that his efforts will be duly rewarded with a newfound understanding of the human condition and the confusing world in which he lives today. When crisis someday arises, I hope this book will be a beacon of sanity amidst the crumbling paradigms and toppling walls of a civilization gone awry. God has foreseen these crises and has passed His foreknowledge to us through His servants, the Prophets, for the guidance, safety, and edification of His children.

Acknowledgements 

     I would like to acknowledge the patience and support of my family throughout the never-ending research and writing of this book.

     I would also like to acknowledge the dedication and perseverance of a friend, who typed and retyped this book many times despite her many other commitments. (omit space before period)

     I would also like to thank another friend, without whom I would have never realized the need to write down what I had discovered.

     Finally, I would like to honor and thank the Prophets of Old that lived and died for the truths that we uncover today. We harvest the fruit of what they sowed so very long ago.

Introduction 

     In order to reduce confusion, a simple sketch of the overall prophetic picture follows.

     We are near to ending "the age of the gentiles" initiated by Jesus and elaborated by Christians over the last 2,000 years. Before the "age of the gentiles" (Christians) we had the "age of the Hebrews" which also had lasted for approximately 2,000 years. After the War of Rome in 70 AD, the Jewish peoples and nation went backstage, and on hold for 2,000 years as the Christians had their turn in the leading role as "Godís people." According to prophecy, we are now entering the consummation of these two ages of man. We are about to begin the trial period that comes before the arrival of the Messiah of Old Testament description. Therefore, this upcoming period is referred to as the messianic period. During this upcoming messianic period both the ages of Christian and Jew are unified and brought to a single, joint consummation. Prophetic scripture of the Old Testament era has much to say about how and why this messianic consummation will proceed. This book is an interpretation, presentation, and synthesis of those prophetic scriptures as they have been illuminated by the recently acquired Urantia Book, and the newly discovered Dead Sea Scrolls (both around 1950).

     Throughout the history of our world, a recurring general theme is evident. Humankind and its leadership first flourish through Godís grace. They then subsequently become self-satisfied and fall away from His precepts. Having become separated from God, we are also separated from the source of all wisdom. The result is the downfall of whatever was built and accomplished. This is the underlying theme behind the fall of ancient Israel, the fall of Adam and Eve, and the collapse of the tower of Babel. This will also be the theme of the unraveling of America in specific and modern civilization in general.   The elements of the story are always the same. The Prophets tell us that the leaders become progressively blinded by power and pride, and thus become mis-leaders Ė progressively lawless, deceitful, self-serving, and unwise. The majority of "the people" are passive, blind, deaf, and dumb. They follow their mis-leaders into chaos and catastrophe. God sends his prophets/messengers to warn and correct, but to no avail, except for the very few whose hearts and minds are set right and who are able to be led to safety. These remaining few become the remnant, the survivors and progenitors of the next cycle.   However, this time the cycle is different. This time, nuclear weapons have entered the scene. If there had been nuclear weapons when Rome fell, we wouldnít be here today to discuss the matter. The presence of nuclear weapons changes Godís evolutionary, remnant plan into no-plan. It changes the remnant into no-remnant. Man has never before been able to achieve stability and avoid the abuse of power and the downfall of empire. Are we more mature now? Are our leaders different from prior leaders? Are we wiser? Have we stopped straying from Godís laws and ways? The presence of thousands of nuclear weapons changes manís next fall into his last fall. The Tower of Babel now has a bomb on the top of it. However, God will not allow the many good and decent people of our world to be annihilated. This is why the Messiah comes. This is why God will choose to enter human history directly. Since the death of Adam and Eve, our world has been without direct divine leadership. The age of strictly human sovereignty will be terminated shortly, and the World Messiah so long awaited by faithful Jews will enter the scene to stay. Our world will never again be without direct divine leadership. Todayís upside down world becomes tomorrowís right side up world. But first, there is a story to tell.

     (The remnant of this cycle has unique characteristics and activities to perform. They are made wise by special books; they stand up for God and His way in the midst of persecution; they receive divine protection through their following of Godís will; and they teach Godís true way: the message of Jesus, the Kingdom of Heaven within. God Himself names this remnant through His prophets and servants. They are the elect, and are those who elect Godís will at the end of the age. This book is dedicated to all those who so elect.)            
 

Said the Master

 Jesus Christ

 

   
 

   
 

 

Quote from "The Kingdom of Heaven is at Hand" by Ed at MEEKROAR@aol.com