Revelation 2:16. "Repent or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will fight against them with the sword of My mouth."
What else can He say? Can God overlook the sin of those who have borne His Name in vain? There is only one way to receive grace in the hour of sin, REPENT. Confess you are wrong. Come to God for forgiveness and for the Spirit of God. This is a command from God. To disobey is death, for He says, "I will make war with you with the sword in My mouth." The beast made war with the saints, but God will make war with the beast. Those who fought the Word will one day find the Word fighting them. It is a serious thing to take from, or add to the Word of God. For those who changed it, and did with it as it suited them, what will their end be but death and destruction? But still the grace of God cries out, "Repent". Oh, how sweet are the thoughts of repentance. Nothing in my hands I bring, simply to Thy cross I cling. I bring my sorrow. I repent that I am what I am, and what I have done. Now it is the blood, nothing but the blood of Jesus. What will it be? Repentance, or the sword of death? It's up to you.
Revelation 2:17. "He that hath an ear let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches. To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and I will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it."
Each message to each age holds out an incentive to the believer, encouraging him to be an overcomer and thereby be rewarded of the Lord. In this age the Spirit is promising the hidden manna and a new name written in a white stone.
Now since each of these messages is directed to the 'angel' - (human messenger) a very great responsibility as well as a wonderful privilege is his lot. To these men God makes special promises, as in the case of the twelve apostles sitting on twelve thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel. Then, remember Paul was given a special promise: that of presenting the people of the bride in his day to Jesus, II Corinthians 11:2 "For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy; for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ." So it will be with every messenger who has been faithful to the Word of his hour and his age. It will be so in the last day. It will be the same special reward that was given to Paul. I think most of you remember how I said I had always been afraid to die lest I should meet the Lord and He should not be pleased with me as I had failed Him so many times. Well, I had been thinking of that one morning as I lay in bed and suddenly I was caught up in a most peculiar vision. I say it was peculiar for I have had thousands of visions and not once did I seem to leave my body. But there I was caught up; and I looked back to see my wife, and I saw my body lying there beside her. Then I found myself in the most beautiful place I have ever seen. It was a paradise. I saw throngs of the most beautiful and happiest people I have ever seen. They all looked so young - about 18 to 21 years of age. There was not a gray hair or a wrinkle or any deformity amongst them. The young women all had hair down to their waists, and the young men were so handsome and strong. Oh, how they welcomed me. They hugged me and called me their darling brother, and kept telling me how glad they were to see me. As I wondered who all those folks were, one beside me said, "They are your people".
I was so astonished I asked, "Are all these Branhams?"
He said, "No, they are your converts." He then pointed to one lady and said, "See that young lady that you were admiring a moment ago. She was 90 years old when you won her to the Lord."
I said, "Oh my, and to think this is what I was afraid of."
The man said, "We are resting here while waiting for the coming of the Lord."
I replied, "I want to see Him."
He said, "You can't see Him just yet; but He is coming soon, and when He does He will come to you first, and you will be judged according to the Gospel you have preached, and we will be your subjects."
I said, "Do you mean I am responsible for all these?"
He said, "Every one. You were born a leader."
I asked him, "Will every one be responsible? What about Saint Paul?"
He answered me, "He will be responsible for his day."
"Well," I said, "I've preached the same Gospel that Paul preached." And multitude cried, "We're resting on that."
Yes, I can see that God is going to give a special reward to His messengers who have faithfully discharged the responsibility He has placed upon them. If they have received the revelation of the Word for that age and faithfully preached in their day, and lived what they preached, they will receive a great reward.
Now with this thought in mind, look at the verse again. "I will give him the hidden manna." We all know that the manna was angel food; it was what God sent down upon the grass for Israel at the time of their wanderings. It was perfect food. It was amazing how those little pellets of food kept them in perfect health. No one got sick. It was all they needed. When the ark was made they put some of that manna into it. Then the ark was put behind the veil and only the high priest would dare approach unto it and then he had to have the sacrificial blood. The Bread from heaven, symbolized by manna, one day came down from heaven and became Life for all who believe on Him. He said, "I am the bread of life. I am the living bread that came down from heaven, if any man shall eat of this bread he shall live forever." When He went away He left us His Word, "Man shall not live by bread alone but by every Word that proceeds out of the mouth of God."
His Word was bread. It was the perfect manna, which, if a man live by, he shall never die. But right after the death of the fathers, no one seemed to know the exact truth and in a short while this manna seemed to have become hidden to the people. But in every age God began to give back by revelation that which was hidden until in this last day according to Revelation 10:7, a prophet will come and reveal all the mysteries and then the Lord will come. Now in each age, I say, the messengers received hidden truth. But they did not receive it for themselves only. But it is as it was when the disciples were asked to serve the multitudes loaves and fishes; Jesus gave them the broken food, but they in turn gave it to the people. God gives His hidden manna to the overcomer. It cannot be otherwise. He would not open His treasures to those who spurn what is already revealed.
What I have been saying about the messenger of each age receiving from God some of the original truth of Pentecost is typed out in the Old Testament where Moses was commanded to take up three and one half pints of manna and place it in a golden vessel behind the veil of the holy of holies. There the high priest of every generation could enter with sacrificial blood. Then he could take a small portion of this manna (for it did not corrupt) which was part of the original and eat it. Now in every age the messenger of the Lord to that age was given the revelation of God for that specific period. Once the messenger was enlightened by truth, he would bring that truth to the people. And they whose ears had been opened by the Spirit would hear that truth, believe it, and live it.
Now then, there is also the thought of the future partaking of the hidden manna. I think it will be the eternal partaking of the revelation of Jesus Christ in the eternal ages to come. How else could we begin to know the un-searchable riches of His own Being? All that we have longed to know, all our unanswered questions, all that will be revealed. It will be from Christ Who is our life that we receive it. Oh, sometimes we think we get to know a little of Him and His Word down here, and it is so good, it makes us rejoice; but one day when our flesh changes, that Word and He will become what we had never dreamed possible.
It also says here that He is going to give the overcomer a white stone and in (not on) the stone a new name, which the owner alone knows. Now the idea of a new name is a familiar one. Abram was changed to Abraham, Sarai to Sarah, Jacob to Israel, Simon to Peter, and Saul to Paul. These names either brought about a change, or were given because of a change. It was only after Abram and Sarai had their names changed by the Lord that they were made ready to receive the coming son. In Jacob's case, he had to overcome and then he was called a prince. In the case of Simon and Saul, when they had received the Lord, their change came. And today each one of us true believers has had a change in name. We are Christians. It is a name common to all of us. But one day we will have another change; we will of a certainty receive a new name. It could well be that name was our true and original name written in the Lamb's Book of Life from the foundation of the world. He knows the name, but we do not. One day at His good pleasure, we will know also.
A white stone. How beautiful. Here is another picture of the saint receiving recompence from the hand of God for his trials upon earth. You know, after Constantine, the false church was able to dip its hand in the state treasury and thereby erect beautiful buildings full of lovely statuary. These statues, made of white marble, were actually Roman idols renamed as saints. The churches and their furnishings were exceptionally beautiful, even as one sees today. But God was not with them. Where was God? He was with His saints in some little home, or in a cave, or some wild mountain area where they hid from the false church members. They did not have beautiful buildings, gowned choirs, fine clothes, and other worldly attractions. But now in this special promise to the true believers of all ages, God has declared He will give them rewards of great beauty and eternal duration. Let the wealthy look down on the poor. Let them give large sums to the church that it in turn might honor the donor by placing a marble plaque or some statuary in their honor on public display that all may applaud. Some day the God Who sees and knows all will once more commend the widow for giving her all, though it be but two mites, and He, Himself, reward with the treasures of heaven.
Yes, hidden manna and a new name in a white stone. How good is the Lord to us to reward us so wonderfully, and we so underserving. Oh, I want to be ready at all times to do His will, and to lay up treasures in heaven. 7ch027.htm
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