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12 CHURCHES - 12 APOSTLES

12 TIMES - 12 DENOMINATIONS IN TWO THOUSAND YEARS

  Carlos Padilla, Pentecost - June 2014

 

Yahshua, Jesus Christ, hast only one Church, which is His spiritual wife, and of which every Christian is part of. However it is evident that there is not only one church -in small letters- but many and different, and although many do not know it, inside catholic and orthodox traditions, as well as in the protestants. Never the less we find that Jesus had twelve Apostles, and Israel has twelve tribes -although it really had 14 Tribes, 14 Apostles, and we can also find 14 denominations- 12 are the called, and we will learn why and its reference that in deed there are 12 Churches. This is a symbolic reference to the three groups of 14 generations that we are taut in the genealogy of our Lord Jesus Christ in the Gospel of Matthew, chapter 1, which starts with this subject. It reveals us 14 generations from Abraham to David, 14 from David until the captivity in Babylon, and 14 from the captivity in Babylon until the Christ.

As in Christ's genealogy the three groups of fourteen are mentioned, we shall make memory of those fourteen in each group, which is: In the Tribes, in the Apostles and in the Church. For those wondering what kabala am I doing, here is the first clue: If you realize we have different lists of twelve tribes in the Bible. If we take the list of 144.000 sealed in Revelation 7, we find that it is different than the one in Genesis 49 or than the one in Joshua 13. The list in Revelation is for the end times. This list provides a clue about the denominations that exist in Christianity, and how they are related.

The first question is why two Tribes and two Apostles are replaced, and if this means that also two Churches are? The aim is to find its significance and if it has to do with Israel dividing in two kingdoms, of the north and of the south, with ten Tribes and two Tribes respectively, and that two were the Apostles that wrote specific letters to fourteen Churches, John and Paul, the first, seven, and the second eight, one coinciding, making them fourteen.

The second questions is, will there be two Churches, and if they are the Catholic and the Protestant, like many will be thinking, or are there others that initially we cannot see? The last Church of Jesus Christ could be formed of two Christian "Tribes", two ways of foreseeing the Gospel and two Denominations. Which ones are they, and what is their mission, and to which do we belong?

 

12 CHURCHES - 12 APOSTLES

The Twelve Apostles could not imagine the amount of denominations and divisions the Church would end up having, for doctrinal reasons, after councils, after the Reform, and after Protestant denominations, nor they could imagine who the last Church would be before the coming of Christ. While the fact is that the Church is one only invisible body made by visible people and congregations, under one only head which is Yahshua, man has converted the Church in an infinite series of all kinds of adaptations to cultures and traditions, with one exception: the "Message of Salvation" is always the same: Yahshua is our Saviour to take us to the Kingdom of God full of justice and peace and eternal happiness, who gave His life in sacrifice to pay for our sins to make us heirs of His Kingdom, has raised and will come to take us to His Kingdom, through faith and the transformation of our spirit through His Holy Spirit in us. At least that should be the Message that every Church should preach. That is essentially the Gospel, the Good News. Then it has been mixed with many man made doctrines which are not original parts of the Gospel of the Kingdom of God which Jesus Christ, the son of the living God preached. All that mixture has, as a result, produced the denominations, whether catholic, orthodox or protestant. Lets remember that Judaism had two principal denominations: Pharisees and Sadducees, not counting the Essenes and other ascetical groups from the desert, or those of Qumran where were found the Dead Sea Scrolls.

On the other hand we are to take into account that two of the Apostles wrote 14 letters to 14 Churches. The Seven Churches to which John the evangelist writes in the Revelation of Apocalypse include a church that is common inside the list of eight churches to which Paul writes. It is the first church to which John writes, Ephesus: Write to the angle of the church in Ephesus..." and the epistle of Saint Paul the Apostle to the Ephesians. Which leaves two groups of 7, which add to 14. In the same way we have 14 tribes in Israel, this is, the twelve sons of Jacob, plus the two sons of Joseph in Egypt, Ephraim and Manasseh, who receive inheritance in Israel. But, it is in Revelation 7 where when mentioning the twelve thousand of each tribe, twelve a mentioned, leaving two tribes out: Dan and Ephraim, a son of Jacob and a son of Joseph, grandson of Jacob. One born on the way to the Promised Land and the other born in Egypt, symbol of the world.

The letters of the two Apostles, John and Paul are the following, in Biblical order: To the Romans, to the Corinthians, to the Galatians, to the Ephesians, to the Philippians, to the Colossians, to the Thessalonians and to the Hebrews. To eight churches. The rest are to the Christians Timothy and Titus, not to churches. John writes to the church in Ephesus, to the church in Smyrna, to the church of Pergamum, to the church of Thyatira, to the church of Sardis, to the church of Philadelphia, and to the church of Laodicea. Seven. Ephesus coincides. Fourteen in total. the other letters of the rest of the Apostles, are universal, like those of Peter and James.

How ever, in the same way as there are fourteen tribes, of which twelve remain, and in the same way as from the fourteen churches, twelve remain, also from the fourteen Apostles twelve remain, these are, the twelve, plus Paul and Matthias. From them, one Judas Iscariot is out for betrayer, and Matthias takes his place, plus Paul takes the place of Jacob, killed in Herod's persecution before he died, Acts 12. So, once the Lord Jesus Christ raised to Heaven, to the Throne of Glory, twelve Apostles remain. We can call this: the three prophetic twelves and  the three prophetic fourteens.

 

12 TIMES - 12 DENOMINATIONS IN TWO THOUSAND YEARS

The Church has been going along for about two thousand years of history, and started to divide in different denominations for different reasons, even since the first century, by those of the Jews and of the Gentiles (see the discussion between Peter and Paul, in the firs Council of Jerusalem "Acts 15" which they solved finally with the guide of the Holy Spirit, a sound example to follow today). In the History of The Church we find the causes, which are both of doctrinal character as of government, cultural and national, amongst other causes.

After the primitive Church, which was spread through the world from Jerusalem, which started to be formed by descendants of Israel until the first "Fathers", and until the first councils, to which the bishops would attend without having one ruling over the others -the figure of the catholic pope- until Constantine and the division of the Great Schism between East and West, with the birth of the Orthodox church, we may find the second and third church. The complexity of the division of the Church does not limit to Catholic-Protestant, but for the many changes after the Reform and until our days, to arrive to the last Church.

Almost until the Protestant Reform there would not be major changes after the successive councils and the tradition which was becoming ever more distant, from the "Sane Doctrine of Christ". It would be from the Catholic church that the reformers would erase. Luther, Calvin, and before, Erasmus. Then we can add the Presbyterian church, the Anabaptist, the Anglican, the Methodist, the Adventist, the Baptist, the Pentecostal and finally the Messianic, in a return to the beginning for the children of Israel, making a basic group of twelve denominations, which we can convert into fourteen, if we add some denominations that so call themselves Christian but are not, like in the case of the Tribes and the Apostles.

Now, every Christian that belongs to one of these denominations and thinks that the rest are wrong, and that the brethren that belong to them err -which is true in many cases- must also take a look at his own churche, because the perfect church does not exist, it will only be when Jesus Christ, our Lord, comes to establish the Eternal Kingdom. Therefore, if there is a way to treat the brothers from other churches, it is the same way as Jesus Christ does, and we ought to imitate Him, who is the Master. Some, in all truth, have deviated their teaching and practices so much that do not deserve to be called Christian. If we apply to the twelve churches the result of the division -by human cause and disobedience to God- that brought the division into the two kingdoms of the north and the south in Israel, after the apostasy of king Solomon, we would be left with two churches, as an image of the tribes of the southern kingdom, Judah and Benjamin.

Judah was the fourth son of Lea, who's name comes from the reaction of his mother who wanted to praise God for Judah, while the names of her previous three sons were referring to her seeking of Jacob's love. On the other hand Benjamin is the second and last son of Rachel, the beloved of Jacob, who died giving birth. They are, Judah, the Jews, where our Lord Yahshua-Jesus comes from, and Benjamin, a loved brother by Judah, who defended him before Joseph in Egypt when he was birthing revenge for having been sold a slave. Two tribes that go together, the Messianic and that of the last son.

The Church linked to Judah is the Messianic Church, and the Church linked to Benjamin is the Evangelical Church (in its many denominations). Jerusalem is in Benjamin, in the same way as the closest Church to the primitive is the Evangelical, where the true Gospel and the true service to God in Jesus Christ is found, a kind of itinerant Jerusalem in the Diaspora, until its return to Zion to meet Yahshua. Judah and Benjamin where the southern kingdom, as it is the Messianic Church and the Evangelical Church.

In deed, the Church could very well have twelve apostles or bishops today to try to maintain the faith in the Bible, due to the way the world's population is divided: Jerusalem (Israel), Palestine ("Samaria (Shiloh: Genesis 49:10) and Galilee" and Arab world, Iran, Iraq, Syria, Turkey, Emirates, Saudis...), Europe, Egypt (and north of Africa), Africa, India, China (Japan, Korea...) Russia, Australia (Philippines and the islands...) South America, United Estates, Canada. 12 basic cultures.

But this way of approaching world cultures is far from a reality of fact and practical, as we know that we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of the age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places, like Paul would say in Ephesians, chapter six. Even though we could have honoured the Lord keeping twelve bishops in the world, this way is in conflict with that of government of many churches. A matter with no solution, as it seams, the unity of the universal Church, leaving aside Psalm 133, for love to our Lord from all Christians, Jesus Christ the Son of God. Lastly, the only thing we can find in this, the end time, it that two groups remain, likewise the two Tribes that remained in Judah, that are carrying in their hand the call to the Gospel and to Bible prophecy about the end time and the coming of Jesus according to Revelation 1:7, and they are the Evangelical Church and the Messianic Jews, who are considered by many as Evangelicals. From twelve churches two remain, that are known as one, the Evangelical. From twelve Tribes two remain, that are known as one, Judah. The Church of Christ and the Tribe of Christ. Only pending that the Tribe of Christ receives Him, because the link is alive, the Messianic Jews, a prophecy, the last, that is fulfilling in the Church and People of Jesus Christ.

 

TWO TRIBES - TWO APOSTLES - TWO CHURCHES - TWO PEOPLE?

As we saw, at the end of the separation of Israel in two kingdoms, north and south, in the south two tribes remain: Judah and Benjamin. The Church also has two Apostles who have marked the evangelization of the world for their number of epistles to the different churches, and it is therefore relevant to see that those two Apostles are of those two tribes, Judah and Benjamin, John and Paul. Benjamin is precisely the tribe of Apostle Paul (Romans 11:1). His apostolate has been the most relevant to the Gentile Church, of all the nations, for that was his ministry, which lasts until today's date, until the day of the return of Yahshua. But we also have another tribe, of which our Lord was from: Judah. And, what ministry or apostolate is there of the tribe of Judah that is relevant and with influence in the end time? There is an apostolate for the tribe or Judah, this is the one of the Messianic Jews. But, of the Tribes remained Judah and Benjamin, and of the Apostles we find that the more relevant work is that of Paul, who was of the tribe of Benjamin. Most assuredly we will be able to link John with the tribe of Judah for his relationship with Jesus, because the wife of Zebedee is Salome (Mark 15:40, John 19:20) the sister of Mary the mother of Jesus -and we know that the mothers give the Jewish inheritance of the tribe in Israel- these were of the descendants of king David, of the tribe of Judah. Jesus would trust His mother to his cousin, who was John's aunt (John 19:26-27).

In the last sixty six years since the creation of the Estate of Israel, both the Evangelical Church, and the birth of the Messianic Jews have gone hand to hand in proclaiming the prophecies regarding the end times to announce the coming of the Messiah. However a group of anti Zionist Jews, as well as the majority of traditional churches like the Catholic, Orthodox and many Protestant have defended chiliasm.

The two periods in the history of humanity, those following the primitive Church, the first would be brought forward by Paul, an Apostle called directly by Jesus. The second is coming very soon with the End of the Times of the Gentiles, which will bring forward by another Tribe, that of Judah. The Jews of the end time that convert to Christ, to Yahshua are the so called Messianic Jews.

 

CONCLUSION

One is the constant in the message of the Holy Spirit for the 12 Tribes, the 12 Apostles and the 12 Churches: that we may love one another. This is the Command of Jesus Christ, that we may be one, like the Father and the Son are one. That we may love God over all things, and our neighbour as ourselves. If we follow this rule, despite the divisions, each will manage to add his part for the glory of God.

We know that Israel is still divided and that many whish to unify into one estate Jews, Israelite, Samaritans, Galileans, of which many are Palestinian. But the clue is the example that the Church, in its twelve denominations is able to give in terms of unity -I do not mean an ecumenism of "all is fine"- but to a unity of the Gospel and of the fraternal love between brothers. A relevant story is brought by the 12 Tribes, the reconciliation of Joseph with his brothers who sold him as slave, God placing him lord of Egypt for the salvation of Israel in the midst of the seven years of thin caws, in Genesis 45.

We all need Jesus Christ as Head and guide for those who love Him, because it is in Him that the Church and Israel have the solution, the Salvation for eternal live in a new world. An example of unity, the one reflected by the Tribes under David, which the ten churches separated from the Evangelical-Messianic should do to become one only under the Word of God, and not under man tradition. But prophecy tells about a last event in which Jesus Christ will come in the clouds, with His holy angles and every eye shall see Him. It will be then when the intention of the hearts of everyone and their fruits will prevail in those that one day, received the faith in the Son of God in the two forms of Church that have remained before God, the Evangelical and the Messianic, both pending that the other ten tribes of the Church, recognize the Work of God and the King of kings to unify both kingdoms into one under the King "son of David, the Son of God".

I close this call to be one for the glory of God and of Jesus Christ, Yahshua with the Text of the first universal letters of John the Apostle, chapter 2:

...Brethren, I write no new commandment unto you, but an old commandment which ye had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word which ye have heard from the beginning. 8Again, a new commandment I write unto you, which thing is true in him and in you: because the darkness is past, and the true light now shineth. 9He that saith he is in the light, and hateth his brother, is in darkness even until now. 10He that loveth his brother abideth in the light, and there is none occasion of stumbling in him. 11But he that hateth his brother is in darkness, and walketh in darkness, and knoweth not whither he goeth, because that darkness hath blinded his eyes... ...15Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. 17And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever. Amen!

 

 

 

 

  • For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Prophecy of Isaiah 9:6.


  • I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. John 14:6. Words of Yahshua - Jesus Christ.
  • You want to know God, but you know the way is not through organized religion, nor by sects, nor by society. The world has failed. ...I pray for them;  I do not pray for the world but for those whom You have given Me, for they are Yours... John 17:9. Prayer of Yahshua - Jesus Christ.


  • If you really seek God, begin today the new life though the true hand of God. The Gospel is the message for all nations, no matter their race, their origins or culture. God is the saviour of those from humanity who open their hearts to Him.


  • ...Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.  1Corinthians 15:58.

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