Have you heard people claim the following passage of Scripture with an unlimited hope: “For it is written: As I live, says the Lord, every knee will bow to me, and every tongue will give praise to God.” This verse is from Romans 14:11 that the Apostle Paul was explaining to the Roman Church some of the most logic-based writings of any timeframe in human history. An English professor in college, who was not a believer in Christ, exclaimed that if you wanted your kids to understand logic, have them read the book of Romans. I never forgot the idea he espoused.
But what does the above phrase mean? Why do Christians repeat this and other verses about all men coming to the throne of God to humble themselves without personal reservations? The verses in question are the above Romans 14:11 passage as well as Philippians 2:10-11 that is also written by Paul to the church of Philippi.
Paul gave brief but powerful passages to his current charges that dot the New Testament. Fundamentalists, of which I proudly stamp my passport to that camp, portend that the entire Bible should be interpreted as directly from the lips of God; and therefore, it’s words are absolutely correct. Others mistakenly accept that the Bible isn’t God’s Word spoken through man inside of the Holy Spirit. I am not going to argue the authenticity in this article, because it could encompass books to extricate that idea wholeheartedly.
Philippians 2:10-11 reads “So that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow – of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth – and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” From a grammatical standpoint, when one starts with a conjunctive phrase indicating that the information within, it must be consider verbiage before. In the passages before verse 10, Paul designated that Jesus was humbling Himself on the Cross and that His name was above any other name. I think most people in the Church readily conjoin with this tenant. In later sections of explaining this passage, I will show how God was envisioning far into the future against other religions whose only wish was to utilize a few of the Biblical principles to propagate their faith.
Knowing that someday that all humans of every timeframe will come to a saving knowledge of Jesus would be a beautiful fantasy. The problem is that we all have Free Will to make our own minds up about that consequence. I want to pull us away from the Predestination vs. Free Will debate by using the more correct correlates of Choice versus Control. In the above Scriptural example, we must denote that Paul was speaking about the Choice of every knee bowing, not the Control that God will try to plaster upon humankind to do so. Saying that God would require humanity to come into His Will makes the whole Bible out to be a liar. Why would the Word try to present so much convincing logic and emotional displays of conviction to bring people into the understanding that the Lord of the earth is in love with His creation? They must Choose to come into that perception within their lives. Love cannot be forced to bow to Heaven.
Therefore, I believe this verse must be talking about something in the future. I feel that it is referencing a day called Rosh Hashanah in which I believe that Jesus will reveal Himself in the clouds at the last ten days before He sets up His Millennial Reign at the end of His seven-year Tribulation Period fulfilling the celebration of Rosh Hashanah. I wrote an article upon “2 Chronicles Seven Fourteen America” (available on my website at DrScottYoung.com) that explains this critical verse to the future of the world and that beautiful timeframe that I cannot wait to see.
Firstly, Jesus was humbled in His First Coming to the earth. He was then killed and offered His life as a sacrifice to pay for the penalty that the Law of Sin introduced to the world inside of the payment called death. Elevation Worship in 2016 released one of my favorite worship songs called Resurrecting. Just a few of the lines below connote that radical Scriptural nature of what He will do from His First to Second Coming:
The Head that once was crown with thorns
Is crowned with glory now.
The Savior knelt to wash our feet,
Now at His feet we bow.
You need to hear the rest of the song; during the first dozen times I listened to the song, I broke into tears at the meaning that dripped from the chorus and verses.
The song speaks of the Sovereignty of God. Not in that He Wills for bad things to happen, as some indicate in their belief when unfortunate consequences occur in their lives. But in the nature that the Sovereignty of God is the interconnected nature of His being with His creation. He is the point of the resolve which has the authority to give the possessions of Himself to humans as well as assigning the orderly maintenance of all that He ordains. This Sovereignty is the reason that the Bible can be written through people and allow for all of their own quirks, but still not miss that the Lord of the Universe will accomplish His intricate plan to perfection.
He has already seen it all; He, therefore, knows the outcome. But more importantly, inside the real understanding of Sovereignty, all things flow together because of God. There is nothing that exists without God knowing about it and making it work together for the plan He has already foreseen. So, when the Father blesses something, it cannot help but react in its blessing, that is unless the object of the blessing has a Choice. Sometimes, humans allow the lies of Satan to take away that idea of Choice that God has already made. God made the Choice to love us and bless us if we would just believe.
When we read the above verse, we see that all confess with their mouths. When we meet genuinely evil people who use the name of Jesus as a cuss word and frequently deride the nature of God, many cannot imagine that they would confess Jesus as Lord. It seems impossible. We have considered two choices concerning this Scripture: 1) to disbelieve it based upon the audacity of the verse or 2) to concede that we will not understand how He will do it. I submit that we have another choice inside of this verse: believe that the reason for this passage will come after tremendous revelation of who Jesus really is.
We have all considered how Jesus will show Himself in the clouds. Artists over the centuries have implanted imperfect conceptions of the creative work that Christ will do in the future. It is more likely that what Jesus will do as a result of the goriest, tumultuous timeframe in human history pushing all of His creation to the brink of annihilation. Matthew 24:22 revealed that no one would survive if the days were not limited. No apocalyptic film has ever devised the incredible works that will be on display for the people of the planet during those fateful days of a Seven Year Tribulation. There will be a darkness on the lands of the world right before Jesus enters the clouds to mess with the world’s perceptions of who Jesus really is to the history of man.
The word Confession means to acknowledge the truth to one another. I have to believe that God visibly appearing in front of all humanity in His mighty authority would drive the knees to the concrete to admit that someone is more significant than themselves. But realize that the Greek word for Confession doesn’t indicate that they turn from their evil ways (2 Chronicles 7:14). But seeing those clouds part to behold a sight that no eye has ever glimpsed will lead to their pronouncement that God has entered the realm of our existence. Moses never could behold what the world will see on that day.
To say that Jesus is Lord means Master, in essence indicating that He owns that which He will step upon. If you walked into my house, you would not throw your muddy shoes upon the walls (or at least I hope you would not) to dent and dirty my house. You would readily acknowledge that I own the place and pay the mortgage. The phrase House Rules demonstrates that the rules of the owner should apply even if they are not shared by the guests. If you do not wish to abide by those mandates, written or unwritten, you should exit the premises. Humanity will realize that the leaseholder has to come to call humanity out upon their poverty of spirit. They are bankrupt and cannot internally pay what God wishes for His property: the earth. Those who do not wish to sign their name upon the lease will be given their parting gift: Hell.
I recently heard a professor from Oral Roberts University, Dr. Jeff Lamp in the Theology Department, respond to those who are living a life without Christ. They are already walking in the presence of darkness, and they will then step into that which they existed.
Lord and Savior?
The Disciples were suffering two complex traumas at the end of Jesus’ ministry: He was brutally murdered and then unexpectedly rose from the dead. But only a few of them had witnessed the second miracle. They would only understand later that Jesus was God and that He had to allow Himself to be killed. But, the Disciple named Thomas had not witnessed what the rest of his cadre had experienced. He would not accept what the others were recounting firsthand. Imagine the scene in the upper room where the air would have been somewhat stale cloistering in the men on the run from the Sanhedrin for purportedly creating a panic among the Jewish elite regarding their Rabbi. Nothing any of the Disciples could layout was able to convince Thomas that Jesus was alive. He needed physical evidence of some type of a spirit being, and they could not provide it.
But as Jesus entered the portal of time-space to interact with His creation, He commanded a dumbfounded Thomas to place his hands and fingers in His wounds. Thomas probably didn’t need to comply at that moment. But Thomas utters a profound statement: “My Lord and my God (John 20:28).”
“Jesus said, ‘Because you have seen Me, you have believed. Those who believe without seeing are blessed (vs. 29).’” Andrew Wommack is a teacher in Woodland Park, Colorado with a massive ministry preaching the Word to millions. Pastor Wommack indicated that Thomas’ message might have been the introduction of the Church as a shadow of what was to come for these new believers. Pastor Wommack presented, in his podcasts of 2016, that he believed that Thomas’ proclamation was the first of its kind only to be repeated by the Church Age followers who would never see their Lord as the Disciples would do. But the Church would have a greater blessing than that of Thomas. There are too many implications for addressing here related to the above passages, but the one I would like to focus upon is Thomas’ word choice.
My Lord would have been similar to what all of the Disciples had claimed about Jesus: that He was their Teacher and Master which they were patterning their life on. But intimating My God was a new reality interposition. No one previously came close to stating this type of revelation. Thomas presented the blank check that a man could be God incarnate. This is the postulate of the Church ever since that day. I loved Andrew Wommack’s perception of Thomas’ pronouncement and heartily agree. To be a believer in Christ is to take Jesus as the Lord of our life, allowing Him to control those things over which we have no control. We must also allow God who had become flesh to take away the sins that we committed against the Prince of the universe. That complete phraseology was the final entry point into starting a new race of beings (I Corinthians 5:17) in which our spirits could be created anew and be seated in Heavenly places (Hebrews 9:27).
But note: Philippians 2:11 does NOT include the proactive words that Thomas introduced to the mystery of the new Church. The deviant wretches at the end of the Tribulation will not be turning their destiny to the Master of time by not claiming Him as their God. They will be admitting that He is a master of the place in which we all inhabit. Without the global understanding of being the God of one’s life, Jesus cannot abide within the presence of the person to transform one’s nature in which sin enraptures the Body and the Soul. Therefore, admitting that Jesus, in the death throes of the planet, is the Lord will condemn humanity to reside in the bodily home and concede that their new home would be in Hell.
Lastly, verse 10 states that all knees will bow “of those who are in Heaven and on earth and under the earth.” It’s an appositive phrase explaining of who will bow to Jesus. For several years, I utterly missed this point that if you believe all humanity will come into submission to Christ at the last moment. But let’s explore why.
Those who are in Heaven indicates people who had already admitted that Jesus was their Master and Lord. When we, who are in Heaven, see Jesus complete the Rosh Hashanah Feast of Trumpets calls to fulfill the coming of the Messiah who will remove the disobedient, we will happily understand the perfect time to bow our knees. It will be an act of worship. We may find ourselves in those first moments in Heaven (which could last centuries on earth) just kneeling in front of our God in awe all the wonders He presents. But we will be repeating our pledge that He is our Lord, but we may be adding the phrase: our God.
Those who are on earth are the main focus of most pastors and teachers who believe that people will finally accept Jesus as their Savior. I do believe that there will be Nations of Gentile peoples (spoken of in Isaiah who needs to come to the Feasts of Israel during the Millennial Reign of whom I call the Sheep), and the Remnant who will come to Christ as their Lord and God. The Remnant will be the last third of the Jewish race who will survive the horrors of the Tribulation and be saved when I believe they will see their Messiah in the clouds. John 19:37 that also repeats Zechariah 12:10 which states the following: “They will look on me, the one they have pierced, and they will mourn Him…” Typically, a new believer who discovers Christ on bended knee, there may be a bit of sadness, but also great joy (chara) in which they perceive a new beginning away from the bondage of sin. I think that it will be a mournful day for the people of the earth who accept Jesus as their Savior at this last second, because they will realize how utterly useless their unbelief was in the face of overwhelming evidence that they could have believed earlier.
Those who are under the earth could only be a reference to people in Hell. It’s another reminder as to the placement of the temporary home of non-believers after their bodily death. It’s a severe torment as the story of Lazarus and the rich man (Luke 16:19-31) in which the rich man was hounded day and night over his poor choices burning in his spirit life. These people had already encountered their moment of realization when their works were counted as filthy rags in the weight of the Law of their hearts (read Romans 1-3 to gather this truth). How can one who has already found lacking kneel? It will be their second of three responses to Jesus; this may be bewildering, so let me explain.
The first response of the wicked at the end of the Tribulation will be at their death. They will kneel and understand that He is the Master of all. They will also acknowledge that their life was lived inside their own goals (as have we all accept for the grace which God granted us). The second will be at Rosh Hashanah at the end of the Tribulation in which no one will be able to claim that Jesus isn’t the Master. They will believe in the False Prophet, the Anti-Christ and/or Satan for a time, but all will understand the weight of their conviction against the truth of the God of all time. The third will begin a little over 1000 years later in which the White Throne Judgment will display all those of humanity who choose not to have their names written in the Book of Life because of their choice not to believe what the Disciple Thomas proclaimed.
To the Glory of God the Father
I hadn’t caught the magnitude of Philippians 2:10-11 until I began to research it in 2019 reading: “…so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” One must read the verses in its full context to imagine the impact of the details. Opponents of Jesus disdain Christianity for one of many reasons, specifically: we claim that Christ is the only way to Heaven. They turn the tables on us to proclaim a level of hate speech that we engage to mitigate that they abhor us. To be against Allah of the Koran would be politically incorrect, to speak out against the Book of Mormon would be unconstitutional, but to refute the Bible, that is something many Americans can get behind. I will not stipulate further other than to say there is a source of their detestation: Satan.
Satan’s ingenious ability to create enemies of Jesus emanates from his disdain for the truth of the Word, which is also being battled on the thought-grounds of America. Connecting the Father to Jesus intimated that Jesus is the only way to Heaven which thrusts the idea to the forefront that God gets the glory. Why would God the Father receive glory at this statement? Because the world will see the accuracy of the nature of the Bible and its fundamental rootedness inside verification. At Rosh Hashanah when every eye sees Jesus then bows at His feet, all the false religions will end inside of their false claims. But, I get it; as soon as I state this point, some will list me with hate speech. But reality is far from that declaration. The Gospel comes to us through One who loved us before we were loveable. So how in God’s green earth (a favorite phrase of my mother’s) can anyone claim to hate those to whom we must reach? The acrimonious speech will not win the day to change the hearts of the people! Only the love of God to find the world when they were not reaching for Him brings that glory to the Father.
Seven Thunders in Revelation
I love the concept of what the Seven Thunders represent in Revelation 10:4: “And when the Seven Thunders spoke, I was about to write. Then I heard a voice from Heaven, saying’ Seal up what the Seven Thunders said, and do not write it down!’” The concept that comes forth is that God will speak a word, but as John attempts to record it as he does with the other visions he witnesses, the angel tells him to seal the message up for the end. The only additional time that the Bible indicates this same secretive message is recurrent in Daniel 12:4 when the concepts of the End Times are sealed up until the end. It concludes with the famous message “many will roam about, and knowledge will increase.” This is a clear understanding of the day in which we live when scientific concepts are furthered in a doubling fashion once every six months. This torrid pace of new data is mostly placed in the camp of the hard sciences. But, I submit to you that I have experienced that Spirit knowledge, not only in my life, but in men and women who search the Scriptures for wisdom that they never experienced before.
The Seven Thunders will also speak a statement from the heart of our Jesus, possibly preaching a timely message. The Bible is a Timeless message in that the Words within it are applicable for information and learning throughout time (II Timothy 3:16). But Time-Full memorandum can also come from the Lord directly to His people. It may include communication that would give away the date of the last moments or our future. The reality is that no one should know their future. It’s too dangerous to understand something that will happen specifically to yourself. But the Seventh Trumpet (the final one) blows by the angel exclaiming the end of all things which is to be fulfilled in Jesus’ Second Coming inside of Rosh Hashanah which butts up against and is tied together with Yom Kippur.
Rosh Hashanah is the date in which Jews would get themselves right with those whom they have wronged, including God. If you did not ask for forgiveness, your transgressions would follow you into Yom Kippur which is the Day of Atonement or the first day of the new year. Your crops and business would not be blessed for that next year. The Day of Atonement, for too many reasons to count here, is a perfect day to place the Great Day of the Wrath of the Lamb which is the last day of the Tribulation before the Millennial Reign transitions the planet into a new imagination of human existence. To bow at Rosh Hashanah, which I believe that the Nations (represented as the Sheep who come to the Lord to enter the Millennial Reign as very innocent believers only ten days old to that beginning of 1000 years), and the Remnant (the last third of Jews surviving until the end of the Tribulation) come to accept that Christ is their long-awaited Messiah or Savior.
I believe that the Seven Thunders will be the spoken word to all of humanity in which each person may hear exact instructions and communication upon their life, with only Jesus’ foreknowledge of who would accept Him and whom would not. I am not suggesting that Jesus relegates a race of people to Hell. That’s unscriptural in the limited teachings of Double Predestination. But He does allow each to choose even though He ultimately knows their answer. Why would Jesus have allowed Judas Iscariot to exist in His midst with the foreknowledge that He would betray the Son of Man to His death and yet keep Him in His presence? Jesus was not following a silly maxim to “keep your enemies closer than your friends!” He is currently seeking and will seek all of humanity, bringing them the good news through the Apostles and Disciples of Christ who saw Him perform His works.
But the day of Reckoning will be evident for all people of the planet at the Seventh Trumpet when all is revealed through Jesus being known, finally, to His enemies and friends that He is God and there is no other, which glorifies the Father above!
Final Attention to Romans
Romans 14:11 “For it is written: As I live, says the Lord, every knee will bow to me, and every tongue will give praise to God.” I referenced this verse before, but I didn’t know that its correlate verse from which Paul was quoting was Isaiah 45:13. To hammer into position the placement of this verse in our future of being a portion of the fulfilling nature of Rosh Hashanah, Isaiah’s reference indicated the quality of its investment for the Millennial Reign. It’s the opening stanza of the Millennial Reign in which the King of kings comes to the planet to take it back for His own. But the next verse is even scarier for most people. But should it be?
Romans 14:12, “So then, each of us will give an account of himself to God.” Is Paul signifying that Christians will give an account to Jesus? Yes and no. We will not have to finalize our sins in front of the Father. Why? Because Jesus already did that. Whatever is left, the good works and the useless works (that does not really sin), will be burned away in II Corinthians 3:13-18 in which our work will vanish in a Holy fire. If it’s built-in the temporary, then they will be gone like wood, hay and stubble. What could that be? My own business is an example as well as my house. There is nothing wrong with either of those material possessions in their own right. There is a reason for working in a business, but I do not take that into eternity. But I will take into eternity the people whom I touched to make a difference in their life for good. That comes through the refiner’s fire as jewels.
What most people miss in verse twelve is the statement of account. In business terms, it’s the Profit and Loss statement along with a Balance Sheet. This is what any business person turns into the government for tax purposes proving the capital gains or losses of that person in which taxation comes from. Even if it wasn’t taxed, the documentation shows the record of the growth or decline of the business as well as its ultimate value. The first business was the English Trading Company in the 1600s, but Paul was exemplifying what every company of the world utilizes these global tools to understand its books. Hence, we have another reason for the Timeless nature of the Bible; it knew that businesses would use an accounting system thousands of years before conglomerate businesses would exist.
The word Accounting means Logos in Greek. It would be similar to the written communication of the financial statement, but here it’s the spoken verbal in which Jesus was referring. Our speech to the Lord of Hosts will be the atoning blood of Jesus. If we had to atone for even one of our sins, it would weaken the Cross and Christ’s work. Isaiah 64:6 indicated that our works are as polluted garments (filthy rags) that are useless whether we were Mother Theresa or Adolf Hitler. No one is Good! Therefore, our righteousness is given by the blood of Jesus.
But the earth will not all bow in the same way that you and I will bow in Heaven or the Sheep and the Remnant will bow on earth before our King. They will reluctantly claim that Jesus is the owner of the planet and cede their zip code over to Him. The wicked will readily relegate themselves to either the Outer Darkness (what will happen only to the Goats) or into Hell for one thousand more years of torment. They will go there with full knowledge that it was their choice. They knew better.
“Since what can be known about God is evident among them, because God has shown it to them. For His invisible attributes, that is, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen since the creation of the world, being understood through what He has made. As a result, people are without excuse (Romans 1:19-20).” Scary Word for Paul that all will know their destiny at the final moment of their accounting.