Main references: Is 29:9-14 NKJV; Rv 5, Rv 10 (Rv 21)
What are the former-heaven and the latter-heaven today, and how are the commandments of men different from the revelation of God?
Former-heaven refers to the period from Jesus’ First Coming until the time of the Second Coming. The work of the former-heaven was to make known the fulfillment of the Old Testament and what will be fulfilled from the New Testament at the Second Coming. Jn 3:31-34 were Jesus’ words spoken during the time of the former-heaven.
Today, at the Second Coming, the latter-heaven is the time when the promises that were made during the former-heaven are fulfilled. This period comes after the former-heaven preaches the gospel of the First Coming for 2,000 years.
Physical Israel did not accept the kingdom of heaven (Mt 4:17) that came at the time of the former-heaven (the First Coming); this is why the kingdom of heaven (heaven, God, and Jesus) left (refer to Mt 21:43), and this heaven has returned (the Second Coming, Rv 3:12, 21:1-6).
The state of faith (life of faith, 신앙) at the First Coming was like that described in Isaiah 29:9-14. During this time, Jesus received and ate the words of revelation from God. He came to his people to proclaim it, as described in Ezekiel chapters 1~3, but darkness did not understand it (Jn 1:1-5). Why did they not perceive? This was because the people taught and learned only the commandments of men, instead of the revelation from God.
The people, who learned only men’s commandments, came near to God with their mouths, but their hearts were far from Him. Would they receive salvation? These people, who were taught only men’s commandments, thought Jesus’ revelation (Mt 11:27) was a blasphemy and “a different gospel,” (refer to Jer 6:9-10) so they persecuted Jesus.
How about at the time of the latter-heaven in the Second Coming?
As it is written in Rv 5, there is no one in heaven or on earth who is worthy to break the seals and open the scroll; there is no one who could open the scroll or look inside. Then, what would be taught? Of course, it was only men’s commandments.
On September 26th, 2013, we went to the Philippines and met a cardinal (age 83). He gave us a pamphlet (a small booklet) of researched information on the doctrines of 13 different religions. The teachings of the 13 religions of the earth were men’s commandments all alike.
Jesus took the scroll from God’s right hand in Rv 5 and began to open the seven seals one by one starting from Rv 6. He opened all of them in Rv 8. He gave the opened (revealed) scroll to the angel in Rv 10, who then gave the opened scroll, the revelation, to the New John. Like Jesus at the First Coming (Ez 3), the New John received and ate the scroll (Rv 10:8-10). The angel told the New John to prophesy this word and what he saw (Rv 1:2) again to the peoples, nations, languages, and kings (Rv 10:11). In Rv 11, while he was preaching according to this command, the New John was killed by those who came out of the Abyss; but, like Jesus, he came back to life in 3 days.
The reasons why they killed the New John were that they considered the revealed word as a blasphemy just like the people at the First Coming, and they, who were the sun, moon, and stars that darkened and fell, did not perceive the revelation, which is the light of life (refer to Jn 1:4-5).
At the First and Second Coming alike, Satan’s pastors of the Abyss prevented the messenger of God from working on this earth, through the commandments of men. That is why Jesus said to overcome (Rv 2,3). Satan has ruled over the entire earth for 6,000 years. If one cannot overcome him, one cannot take back the earth that has been lost.
Only by overcoming, can the earth be found. The work of God does not end because of insignificant matters like the commandments of men. There is a massive war between God and Satan. It is a war that has been waging for 6,000 years. This war ends and the Sabbath comes when God and his pastor fights and overcomes Satan and his pastors. Through victory, there is the kingdom of God and salvation (Rv 12:10-11).
At the First and the Second Coming alike, before the faith to be revealed (revealed faith) came, everyone was teaching and learning at the level of men’s teachings. According to Hosea 4:6, no one has any other way but to be destroyed without the knowledge to be revealed (revealed knowledge). After receiving the revealed faith, one can go on to perfection by leaving the elementary teachings of the Way (Heb 6:1-3 NKJV). “Perfection” is the fulfillment of the Book of Revelation that appeared as a physical reality (revelation of the physical fulfillment). The difference between the era of the sealed scroll and the era of the revelation of the sealed scroll is as great as that of heaven and hell. If one does not overcome, God’s kingdom and salvation do not come (Rv 12). If one truly understands this, he will know himself and know this era.
Until Jesus’ revelation of the First Coming came, Physical Israel had believed that they were saved. Until today’s revelation of the Second Coming came, Spiritual Israel believed that they were saved. But this is not the case as the prophecies of the Book of Revelation and their physical fulfillment are made known. Indeed, the end of the age is a night. People do not know the Bible, themselves, nor God. Why do you think Jesus said in Mt 11:27 that no one can know God unless he received the revelation? It says in Hosea 6:6 that God desires mercy and not sacrifice, and that He desires the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings (NKJV). And it says in Jn 17:3 that eternal life is to know the true God and Jesus whom He sent. Revelation is the way to know the true God.
Apostle Paul was flawless in regards to the law, and was famous for his knowledge, being second to none. But after knowing the Lord, he threw away his own knowledge, for he considered them rubbish (Phil 3:5-9) and said in Gal 1:11-12 that he only taught the revelation he received. Paul said in 1 Cor 13:9-12, “For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.” He was referring to the revelation, which referred to the physical realities, the entities that were promised. What are the promises the Lord gave us to believe in? Are they not the physical realities, the entities, of the prophecies that were promised through the blood? The reason the promised prophecies were told in advance is so that we can see and believe when they are fulfilled (Jn 14:29).
Physical Israelites claimed that they believed in the Old Testament prophecies, but they did not believe in their physical fulfillment (refer to Jn 1:9-11; Jn 3). This faith was false.
‘If we claim that we believe in the New Testament prophecies, yet we do not believe in the physical fulfillment of the prophecies, how can we be any different from Physical Israel?
I did not come on my own, but the Lord sent me for the churches. While he was fulfilling the promises he made for the churches, the Lord showed me and explained to me chapters 1 through 22 of the Book of Revelation. After I received the word of revelation (Rv 10) and he showed me, and made me see with my own eyes, the physical entities of all the events of Revelation, he commanded me to testify all these to the churches.
This is how you know that I have been sent in the name of the Lord, as the messenger who speaks on his behalf (Rv 22:16).
As it says in Revelation 2 and 3, I sent letters to the seven stars (angels/messengers) who prepared the way of the Lord, urging them to repent. Now that I am being sent to the churches, I pray, more than believing in me, that you will believe in the Lord who sent me and in the revelation that is fulfilled, and become the people of heaven and the priests of God’s new kingdom.