Principle No. 14 The Election Principle Part 3
By Clifton L. Fowler
Taken from Grace and Truth Magazine 1924
THE ELECTION PRINCIPLE ILLUSTRATED BY GOD'S TWO MESSIAHS
The Lord Jesus Christ Is God's second Messiah. Since we know God's purpose according to election is to establish all seconds, we know that the Father will establish the Savior forever. But God's first Messiah, because he Is a first, is set aside. Who was God's first Messiah? The word Messiah means, "the Anointed." The New Testament equivalent Is Christ. The meaning of the word Christ is, "the Anointed." The first Christ has been deposed and set aside. God's second Christ has been exalted far above men, demons, and archangels. The Lord Jesus, the only begotten of the Father, is God's second Christ. But who was God's first Christ? The word Christ does not mean Redeemer, nor Savior, nor Substitute. Redeemer, Savior, and Substitute are titles which speak of glorious things accomplished, works performed by God's second Anointed One, God's second Christ. Some earnest children of God may be somewhat perturbed at the thought that we speak of God's "having two Christs. To them, the word Christ Is synonymous with Redeemer or Savior. This, however. Is not actually the case. The word Christ simply means "Anointed." God's first Christ was Indeed lifted to lofty position, and anointed (i.e. Messiahed or Christed) for glorious tasks. But he became puffed up and God set him aside. Who was God's first Christ?
The word Anointed In the Old Testament, when it appears In connection with sentient beings. Is used In three ways. That Is to say. Anointing is an ordinance which Is employed by God to Induct His creatures Into three separate and distinct offices.
Anointing was an ordinance which God connected with the PROPHETIC office:
Anointing was an ordinance which God connected with the Aaronic PRIESTHOOD:
Anointing was an ordinance which was also connected by God with His placing KINGS upon the throne:
Thus we see that In the mind of God, the ceremony of anointing stood connected with the three great offices of Old Testament times, — The Prophetic office, the Priestly office, and the Kingly office. It Is most interesting to observe that whenever these anointings are spoken of some form of the root word from which the word Messiah comes Is used by the Holy Spirit. It Is as though God were saying to us, wherever you see one of My Prophets, Priests or Kings, you are beholding In type. In adumbration. My Coming One, My Beloved Son, My Anointed One, My predicted Messiah, My chosen and exalted Prophet, Priest and King, for Jesus is the rightful and Anointed holder of all three of the Old Testament offices.
But as we face these more or less familiar truths in God's Word, the question keeps rising, — who was God's first Anointed one? Who was God's first Prophet, Priest and King? Who was God's first Messiah? Who was God's first Christ? Who is the one who, because he stands in the position of a first is to be forever set aside? For God's purpose according to election must and shall stand.
GOD'S FIRST CHRIST
There is a much quoted passage in Ezekiel 28 which contains the answer to these questions. We quote:
The identification of the personage spoken of in this passage is determinable from the words of the passage itself.
The passage opens with a lamentation over the king of Tyre, but the language is such that the thoughtful reader soon becomes convinced that the Spirit of God is merely using the king of Tyre as a starting point. The king is evidently an earthly type of some creature which is more than human for the astonishing phraseology ascribes attributes and powers which cannot apply to a mere man. Since a king is used to shadow forth this being, we conclude the passage concerns a male being. In the fifteenth verse of this remarkable chapter reference is made to "the day that thou wast created." This carries the identification a little further. We now know two things concerning the character described in Ezekiel 28. It is a male and it is a created being.
Another examination of the fifteenth verse will reveal a noteworthy fact concerning the one whose identifying description we are seeking to gather from these inspired words. In the opening statement of the verse he was "perfect in his ways," but at the close of the verse we find this horrid denouncement, "iniquity was found in thee." Evidently these words refer to a being who started perfect, but experienced a humiliating fall. Further details of this fall are suggested in the succeeding verses. The once perfect, but now fallen one is spoken of as having a heart that was lifted up and wisdom that is corrupted. As a result of this appalling fall this being is "cast out of the mountain of God" and "cast to the ground." Thus we observe, we have gleaned three facts concerning the being described in Ezekiel 28. It is a male, it is a created being, and he was created perfect, but through the sin of pride, fell from his lofty perfection.
Furthermore this being is said in verse fourteen and again in verse sixteen to be a cherub. The cherubim, as Ezekiel makes so plain in the first chapter and in the tenth chapter of his prophecy, are the living creatures, the loftiest rank of the angels, to whom is committed the special care of the throne of God. An additional point of information
concerning this astounding creature is that he was in Eden the garden of God. We have learned five facts about him by which we shall seek to identify him.
In securing this identification, our fifth fact gives us a good starting point. We know from the Scripture that there were four in the garden of Eden, — Adam, Eve, God and Satan. Hence the one whom we are studying about must have been one of these four. Let us by a process of elimination find out which he was. He cannot be Eve because he is a male. He cannot be God because he is a created being. Because he was perfect and fell he might be confused with Adam, but this confusion breaks down when we face the one remaining fact. He cannot be Adam because he is a cherub. Adam was not an angelic creation. He was man. Hence the amazing creature described in Ezekiel 28 is none other than Satan himself.
We have been asking the question who was God's first Christ? Who was God's first Anointed one? The answer is here in Ezekiel 28. God's first Messiah was Satan. The statement is clearly made in this chapter in verse fourteen:
The word translated "Anointed" is in the original a form which appears no place else in the Old Testament. The particular meaning of this word is "an expansion," or "extension" or "overspreading." Its root is the same as the root for Messiah, and the ordinary words for Anointing. Some of the writers have said that the "extension" suggested in this word must be the extension of the wings of the cherub, but this cannot be acceptable to us, for there is nothing about wings in the passage. On the contrary, since the root word means Anointing and since this particular form carries with it the suggestion of an extension or expansion, the consistent interpretation of the word is that it means an extended Anointing, or an expanded Anointing, or an Anointing which spreads over, or takes in all of the Anointings. To this view the context gives most convincing confirmation and endorsement.
An Anointing which expands, or extends to all the Anointings would be an Anointing which would take in God's three great Anointing offices, the office of Prophet, Priest and King. If Satan was the possessor of an expanded anointing from God then he was the Prophet, Priest and King of the pristine creation.
The context contains three illuminating suggestions pointing directly to this conclusion.
First, the Spirit of God tells us that this being, whom we have seen from a study of the passage itself is Satan, is "full of wisdom." Elsewhere the Scripture declares that "the fruit of the righteous is a tree of life and he that winneth souls is wise." Winning souls is accomplished by the telling forth of God's message, which is the exercise of the prophetic ministry. Hence he that exercises the prophetic ministry is wise. Since it is the wise who exercise the prophet office and Satan was "full of wisdom," we instantly see that God's Spirit is placing before us the teaching that Satan exercised the prophetic office. Evidently this occured when he was in his unfallen condition.
Second, this passage clearly teaches that Satan also exercised another ministry. This is set before us in the thirteenth verse and the eighteenth verse.
The wondrous personage of Ezekiel 28 whom we have identified as the Devil, is definitely declared in this passage to have had a sanctuary and to have worn as his covering many precious stones. The significance of these things is self-evident, for it is the priest who wears the precious stones upon his shoulders and his breast, and it is the priest who ministers in the sanctuary. Satan, in those glorious days before his fall was prepared of God to be a priest.
Third, the Spirit of God uses a king as the one who should fittingly typify Satan, hence we are led to the conclusion that he exercised the prerogatives of a king.
Yes, Satan was God's first Anointed one. He was God's first Prophet, Priest and King, as the passage with such satisfying and astonishing clarity indicates. He possessed all three of the Old Testament Anointed offices. He was indeed and in truth the Anointed cherub. He had an "extended." "expanded," "outspreading" Anointing, which reached to all of the ministries received by God's Anointing. Satan was God's first Messiah (Anointed), God's first Christ.
GOD'S SECOND CHRIST
But the Lord Jesus Christ is God's second Anointed One. He is God's second Christ, and He shall not be set aside. He shall be ESTABLISHED.
Satan's anointed three-fold ministry was exercised on the behalf of the pre-adamic inhabitants of earth. These were demons, not men. Adam was the first man. Satan, upon the creation of man, coveted the prize of exercising his three ministries with the human being, — He sought to bring disobedience and rebellion to man. He succeeded all too well. Upon meeting with this success, Satan proceeded to usurp the three anointed offices in his dealings with man. The Scripture shows this plainly.
Although Satan is a first anointed one, and is set aside, he now seeks to usurp his former offices. He is to be completely ousted by the Lord Jesus, Who is God's victorious One Who shall be established forever.
When Jesus was here he presented to God His prophetic ministry. In the course of that prophetic ministry he met Satan in the temptation and overcame him. At Calvary Jesus met the adversary again and defeated him on our behalf. God signified His acceptance of that prophetic ministry by raising Jesus from the dead and lifting Him up in ascension to heaven. Jesus is now at the right hand of God interceding, hence God has accepted Him as priest. There comes an hour when the glory of heaven shall burst upon earth as the lightning flashes out of the east into the west. At that glad hour of Jesus return to earth God shall set His King upon His holy hill of Zion. Jesus has been inducted into His prophetic ministry, Jesus has been inducted into His priestly ministry. The hour soon comes when our blessed Lord shall be inducted into His Kingly ministry, and earth, heaven and hell shall reverberate with the glorious cry, "The Lamb that was slain has become King of Kings and Lord of Lords."
God's purpose according to Election stands. He sets aside all firsts and establishes all seconds. When Jesus comes back, Satan is bound with a chain and put in the pit. The first Christ is dispossesed of his house and all his wares, while God's second Christ, His glorified Prophet, Priest and King ascends the throne of His father David in Jerusalem to reign over all nations throughout a great millennium of power, peace and plenty.
(Copyright, 1924, Clinton L. Fowler)