An Examination of Kingdom-, Dominion-,
and Latter Rain Theology
An Apologetics Index research resource
An Examination of Kingdom Theology - Part 3/3
If the dominion overcomers are to be God's instruments of destruction upon not only unbelievers, but believers who do not submit to the authority of the apostles and prophets as well, they will need immunity from reprisals. It is an essential ingredient of Dominion Theology, therefore, that these overcomers, through their perfect (sinless) living, attain immortalization and become impervious to injury and death. That's why it's such a tragedy for someone in the movement to die - especially someone in a position of dominion leadership. If God does not count such an one worthy to escape death, then those close to him must make excuses such as equating his death with some vicarious suffering for the Body of Christ. Of the fringe movements in dominion teaching, Positive Confession is most susceptible to this theory of immortalization. The believe-it-and-receive-it mentality of Positive Confession must inevitably result in the belief that if one can muster enough "faith" to live in "divine health" (which has never been sufficiently defined), he can also believe for immortality. Of course, it is believed that this final state of physical perfection will come about only through the attainment of spiritual perfection. The reason is that death is the final enemy to be conquered (I Corinthians 15:26).Earl Paul
THE FIFTH FUNCTION OF THE CHURCH IS TO CONQUER THE LAST ENEMY, WHICH IS DEATH, AND TO BRING REDEMPTION TO THE BODY OF CHRIST. When the Apostle Paul says that redemption has not yet taken place, he speaks, I believe, of the redemption of the individual body; yet in my spirit I perceive that he speaks also of the redemption of the Body of Christ. [Boldface Paulk's throughout.] Jesus Christ Himself overcame death individually, and WHEN THE CHURCH BECOMES SO CONFORMED TO HIS IMAGE THAT THOSE WHO DIE DO NOT PASS THROUGH THE GRAVE, BUT BECOME INSTEAD GLORIOUSLY CHANGED IN THE TWINKLING OF AN EYE, IT WILL BE THAT CHURCH WHICH WILL BRING THE KINGDOM OF GOD TO PASS ON THE EARTH. [Paulk then quotes Romans 8:18,22-23, and Ephesians 1:13-14.] We have received the earnest of the EXPECTATION through the baptism of the Holy Spirit, but we must move on to the POSSESSION, which is overcoming the last enemy, death. Sometimes the interpretation has been made that Jesus Christ conquered death, but if that were so, why would Paul's epistle to the Corinthians, written at least ninety years later, say that the last enemy that SHALL be destroyed is death (I Corinthians 15:26)? JESUS CHRIST CONQUERED DEATH INDIVIDUALLY, BUT IT IS LEFT TO THE CHURCH TO CONQUER DEATH ON A CORPORATE BASIS.. Is it possible that there will be a people who so possess the authority of Almighty God, as Elijah did, that they, as a group, will say to death, hell, and the spirit of Satan, 'We will NOT die. We will stay here and be changed, and we will call Jesus Christ to return to this earth as King of Kings and Lords of Lords'? Yes, that is what I believe the church must do! But it will not be easy, because GOD IS LOOKING FOR THE MANIFESTATION OF A MATURE CHURCH WHO CAN SPEAK WITH THE AUTHORITY JESUS HAD WHEN HE STILLED THE WINDS AND CALLED LAZARUS FORTH FROM THE GRAVE. An exciting prospect? Oh, yes! We are God's people, called to do the will of God in the world today and to see the King of Glory return to establish His Kingdom on earth! Jesus Christ had the authority to say 'No' to death on earth, and He is waiting for us to come to that same authority He had so we can say, 'The last enemy - death - has been conquered!' (1)[Paulk then quotes I Corinthians 15:20-26.] Jesus Christ, as the firstfruit of the Kingdom, began the work of conquering death on an individual basis, but we, as His church will be the ones to complete the task. Jesus said (Matthew 28:18), 'All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth,' and the church today has that same power. Death will not be conquered by Jesus returning to the earth. It will be conquered when the church stands up boldly and says, 'We have dominion over the earth!' How else will God be able to show Satan a people for whom death holds no fear, over whom death no longer has any power? When God can do that, Satan's hold on us will be broken forever!I Thessalonians 4:13-17; I Corinthians 15:50-55). This immortality unto eternal life, the hope of our salvation, will occur suddenly and will take effect throughout the Body of Christ, not just among a select few "overcomers." It won't occur because we happen to come to the realization that we can speak it into existence because of our attainment to holiness through outward works of righteousness. Such a notion is ridiculous and is contradicted by Scripture. Likewise the very Scriptures Paulk quotes contradict his belief that the Church will destroy death. For verse 26 of I Corinthians 15 says, "For he [Jesus] must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death." Jesus, when He returns (not the Church prior to His return), is the one who will put all enemies under His feet. He must reign on earth until that is accomplished. The context of these verses shows clearly that death will be destroyed 'after' the Millennium, when Christ "shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father" (I Corinthians 15:24).
(Leading apostle of the Identity Movement): In a communication to his followers, Ebaugh reprinted a proclamation by a Rev. Dean Gross entitled "Melchisedec Order Decree," and offered it free on request to those who would write to his organization, Word by Word Association. This decree, affirming belief that the end-time overcomers will be a part of the Melchisedec Order of priests, states in part:Sam Fife
In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, through his blood, fire, water, and Spirit, I receive glory, honor, and immortality by imparting his now-blood, liquid streams of living light into my blood. My whole spirit by faith, soul by works, body by hope is now being preserved blameless until the coming of the Lord. When I decree a thing, it is established unto me; and your light shines upon my ways. I decree that the full manifestation of the Kingdom of God from within me now come forth. I decree that every atom within my earthly, physical body bring forth health, light, life, and immortality. My light is now coming forth as the morning, and my health is springing forth speedily, and my righteousness goes before me. Your glory is my rear guard. For I am made in the image of Elohim, after Elohim's likeness. I have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. I am helping to bring about the revelation and restoration of all things which you have spoken by the mouth of all your holy prophets since the world began.
(A leading apostle of the Manifested Sons of God Movement): In his book, 'One Corporate Man,' Fife states:
Therefore let all men know, that in this dispensation of the fullness of times, God is going to fulfill His purpose to bring together into one, all things that are in Christ, both in the earth and in heaven, and make of all the twos, one new many-membered man, who lives after the order of Melchisedec. When He has finished preparing this many-membered man, He is going to purge the earth of every other man by His Judgment Day, and there will come in a new age, and a new earth, with a new man living in a new order, where every member is so dead to self that he lives unto the rest of the Body, and that order shall perpetuate eternal life.
...The accusers said to Jesus, 'We have Moses as our father, and Moses said, Thou shalt not commit adultery.' Jesus replied, 'I believe that too, but let me carry you to a heavenly dimension. If you don't lust in your heart you cannot commit adultery.' They said, 'The law says, Thou shalt not kill,' and Jesus replied, 'I believe that too, but let me speak to your heart. If you don't hate first, there is no possibility of murder.' How wise Jesus was!
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