Content copied from www.theacademy.org.au
It was still dark outside on Sunday morning, February 5, 2012, when I arrived at the church office to spend time in prayer and to meditate on the Scriptures that I was planning to teach later that day.
As I was about to put a key into my office door, my cell phone rang. I was surprised to see that it was a prophet friend calling me from the other side of the country. He just had a visitation from an angel. This was not unusual for him. He told me that the angel said “This morning Joe Sweet will be speaking about the glory of God within. The Lord says to tell him to tell the people that My glory IS within men.”
He went on to tell me that when the angel told him this, he had thought to himself “I know that. Joe knows that. I wonder why the angel is giving me this message.” Then he thought again “No, we don’t really know it. We may know it in our heads but we don’t really know it or God wouldn’t have sent the angel. We need to know this.”
The amazing thing is that my message that morning was about the glory of God inside the believer! I was planning to teach on the transfiguration of Jesus when he was on the mountain and how the glory of God shone through Him like the sun. My message was that the SAME glory can and should arise within the believer, if we know how to cooperate with God’s will. We are going to see, in our day, the appearance of the “shining ones” who are walking in the manifested glory of God. Jesus did. Peter and Paul did. We are about to see many throughout the earth manifest His glory like we have never seen before. The angel was sent to confirm this message.
“Christ in you, the hope of glory” Colossians 1:27
The following is a summary of the message that was confirmed by the angel that day:
When Jesus was transfigured on the mountain; when the glory of God shone through Him, He was showing Peter, James and John the potential of the believer who walks with God. Yes, there will be end-time saints who literally walk in a visible, shining glory as they manifest the love and power of Jesus Christ in the earth.
“Arise, shine; for your light has come! And the glory of the Lord is risen upon you. For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and deep darkness the people; but the Lord will arise over you, and His glory will be seen upon you.” Isaiah 60:1-2
Notice that the glory of God does not fall from heaven upon the saints, it rises (from within) upon them.
The transfiguration of Jesus
“And He (Jesus) said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you that there are some standing here who will not taste death till they see the kingdom of God present with power.” Now after six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John, and led them up on a high mountain apart by themselves; and He was transfigured before them. His clothes became shining, exceedingly white, like snow, such as no launderer on earth can whiten them. And Elijah appeared to them with Moses, and they were talking with Jesus. Then Peter answered and said to Jesus, “Rabbi, it is good for us to be here; and let us make three tabernacles: one for You, one for Moses, and one for Elijah”— because he did not know what to say, for they were greatly afraid.
And a cloud came and overshadowed them; and a voice came out of the cloud, saying, “This is My beloved Son. Hear Him!” Suddenly, when they had looked around, they saw no one anymore, but only Jesus with themselves.
Now as they came down from the mountain, He commanded them that they should tell no one the things they had seen, till the Son of Man had risen from the dead.” Mark 9:1-9
I used to read Mark 9:1 and think that the phrase “till they see the kingdom of God present with power” was referring only to the Second Coming of the Lord Jesus. However Jesus was referring to apostles seeing the Kingdom of God manifest through Him in glory on the Mount of Transfiguration. We know this from 2 Peter 1:16-18. Peter writes:
“For we did not follow cunningly devised fables when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of His majesty. For He received from God the Father honor and glory when such a voice came to Him from the Excellent Glory: “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” And we heard this voice which came from heaven when we were with Him on the holy mountain." 2 Peter 1:16-18
When the glory of God filled and shone through the Lord Jesus Christ on the holy mountain, Peter was seeing “the kingdom of God present with power” as Jesus had predicted in Mark 9:1
When Peter writes, in 2Peter 1:16, “we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ”, the Greek word, parousia, that is translated “coming” is also translated as “presence”. On “the holy mountain” as Peter refers to it, the three apostles saw the “kingdom of God present with power”. 2 Peter 1:16
We remember when the Pharisees asked Jesus about the kingdom of God appearing. They were expecting an external appearance of the government of God to come and affect their society, perhaps overthrowing the Roman occupation. The Lord Jesus corrected them, saying,
“The kingdom of God does not come with observation; nor will they say ‘See here!’ or ‘See there!’ For indeed the kingdom of God is within you.” Luke 17:20-21
The glory of God will arise from “the kingdom of God within” and overshadow the believer who walks with God. Again, on the mount of transfiguration, the Lord was showing His disciples what they were called to walk in. Peter certainly walked in this manifested, shining glory. There was so much of God’s presence radiating from him that if someone got within shadow distance of him they were healed. There was not healing power in his shadow. There was a “glory zone” radiating from Peter. When someone got within that “zone” they were healed.
“So that they brought the sick out into the streets and laid them on beds and couches, that at least the shadow of Peter passing by might fall on some of them. Also a multitude gathered from the surrounding cities to Jerusalem, bringing sick people and those who were tormented by unclean spirits, and they were all healed.” Acts 5:15-16
Is this only for Peter, James and John? No! Scripture tells us otherwise.
“But we are bound to give thanks to God always for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God from the beginning chose you for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth, to which He called you by our gospel, for the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.” 2 Thes. 2:13-14
“He who says he abides in Him (Jesus) ought himself also to walk just as He walked.” 1 John 2:6
We are also called to walk like Jesus and Peter walked. How do we get from where we presently are to the place that Peter walked? Peter gives us step-by-step instructions in his second epistle.
“Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us to glory and virtue, by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.” 2 Peter 1:1-4
Walking in His glory happens through the grace of God by believing His great promises and becoming partakers of his divine nature (holy love).
“But also for this very reason (that you are called to walk in glory and virtue), giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins.” 2 Peter 1:5-9
These are the steps we are to take to enter into His Kingdom (glory realm) with power and glory:
1) be diligent
2) have faith
3) add virtue – doing what is right as unto the Lord
4) add knowledge – be immersed in and illuminated by Scripture
5) exercise self-control, a fruit of the Spirit
7) add godliness
8) grow in brotherly kindness
9) increase and abound in love. (1 Thes. 3:12-13) Love is the goal (1 Timothy 1:5)
“Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble; for so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” 2 Peter 1:10-11
The “everlasting kingdom” that Peter is referring to is not heaven.
Rather it is the realm of “righteousness, peace and joy” that we can live in. A person does not have to have diligence, virtue, godliness, and perseverance to make it into heaven. The thief on the cross did not have all of that, and he went to heaven. The kingdom Peter is referring to is what he saw manifesting through Jesus on the Mount of Transfiguration “the kingdom present with power”. Jesus said this “kingdom is within you”. If we grow in virtue, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness and brotherly kindness until we come to LOVE, then we will be given an abundant entrance into the “kingdom present with power” realm. Love is the key! Love is the main thing. Love is the goal.
“God is love. He who abides in love abides in God and God in him.” 1 John 4:16
"This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all." 1 John 1:5
The more that we walk in love, the more the LIGHT of God fills us and radiates from us.
Peter, referring to the Mount of Transfiguration experience, goes on to say,
“For we did not follow cunningly devised fables when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ (on the Mount of Transfiguration), but were eyewitnesses of His majesty. For He received from God the Father honor and glory when such a voice came to Him from the Excellent Glory: “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” And we heard this voice which came from heaven when we were with Him on the holy mountain.” 2 Peter 1:16-19
Yes, when Peter was saying we would be given an “abundant entrance into the kingdom” he was saying that the “kingdom with power” that Jesus manifested on the Mount of Transfiguration will be our experience. Peter continues in verse 19.
“And so we have the prophetic word confirmed, which you do well to heed as a light that shines in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts” 2 Peter 1:19
What prophetic word is Peter referring to? He is referring to 2 Peter 1:1-11. That is the prophetic word, which we do well to heed (pay attention to; act on; hold onto) UNTIL the Day dawns and the Morning Star (Jesus Himself) RISES IN YOUR HEART. The Morning Star rising in our hearts is transfiguration. These are the shining ones of Isaiah 60:1-2.
It is love! God is love. God is light. As we grow in virtue, knowledge, self-control, etc., until we come to LOVE, the kingdom will begin to shine out of us in glory.
Mark 9:2 says that it was “after six days” that Jesus took Peter, James and John up on the Mount of Transfiguration. 2 Peter 3:8 reminds us that “with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.” From creation to the time of Jesus on earth spanned about 4,000 years. From the time of Jesus until now has been over 2,000 years. We are NOW in the time of “after six days”.
In the last days, when gross darkness covers the earth, a visible glory will be seen on some of God’s people. Each of us chooses how close we want to walk with the Lord. If we are hungry and pursue Him, He will give us the grace to do it. In the last days there will be many who rise and shine with His glory.
Remember, when Peter was instructing us how we are “called to glory and virtue” and how to pursue an “abundant entrance into the kingdom”, he said that we become partakers of the Divine Nature through the “exceedingly great and precious promises”. The following are a few of these promises:
“Now may the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you perfect in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.” Hebrews 13:20-21
“Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, to God our Savior, Who alone is wise, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forever. Amen.” Jude 1:24-25
“Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who calls you is faithful, who also will do it.” 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24
“And may the Lord make you increase and abound in love to one another and to all, just as we do to you, so that He may establish your hearts blameless in holiness before our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all His saints.” 1 Thessalonians 3:12-13
“Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Therefore let us, as many as are mature, have this mind; and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal even this to you.” Philippians 3:12-15