(week 49/10)

The church of Jesus Christ can be categorized into 3 sections:

1. The Harlot (Babylon) church

2. The virgin church

3. The perfect church

Using the Tabernacle of Moses as a type these 3 sections of the church are located as thus:

1. The harlot church operates between the door and the altar of burnt offering.

Recall that the door represents our entry into the church through the Lord Jesus while the altar of burnt offering represents the place of the shedding of blood for the forgiveness and remission of our sins. Christians who come through the door (i.e. accept Christ) immediately go to the altar to have their sins forgiven and cleansed. However, sadly many after a short period of some spiritual growth do not progress beyond the altar of burnt offering and so do not experience any tangible dominion over sin in their conduct: they are in the church but functionally are dead spiritually and in danger of being cut-off and going to hell.

Revelation 3:1-2 MKJV: And to the angel of the church in Sardis write: He who has the seven Spirits of God and the seven stars says these things. I know your works, that you have a name that you live, and are dead. (2) Be watchful and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die. For I have not found your works being fulfilled before God.

John 15:6 MKJV: If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered. And they gather and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.

There is hardly any fruit of the Spirit in their lives and are characterized by friendship with the world: the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life. They are called spiritual adulterers and adulteresses and so are characterized as the ‘harlot’ church:

James 4:1-4 MKJV: From where do wars and fightings among you come? Is it not from this, from your lusts which war in your members? (2) You desire, and do not have. You murder, and are jealous, and cannot obtain. You fight and war, yet you have not because you ask not. (3) You ask and receive not, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it upon your lusts. (4) Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever desires to be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.

Covetousness: spiritual idolatry dominates their hearts: minds, wills and emotions.

2 Peter 2:14-15 MKJV: having eyes full of adultery and never ceasing from sin, alluring unstable souls, having a heart exercised with covetousness. They are cursed children (15) who have forsaken the right way and have gone astray, following the way of Balaam the son of Beor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness,

Colossians 3:5 MKJV: Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness (which is idolatry),

The good news in all this is that if you retrogress into the harlot church you do not have to stay there: you can and should come out of her!

Revelation 18:2-4 MKJV: And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great has fallen, has fallen! And it has become the dwelling-place of demons, and a prison of every unclean spirit, and a cage of every unclean bird which has been hated, (3) because of the wine of the anger of her fornication which all the nations have drunk. And the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her. And the merchants of the earth became rich from the power of her luxury. (4) And I heard another voice from Heaven, saying, Come out of her, My people, that you may not be partakers of her sins, and that you may not receive of her plagues.

You come out of the harlot church by confession and cleansing of sin (1Jn.1:9) and repentance of double mindedness: seeking God for things primarily and not for the Kingdom (Matt. 6:33):

James 4:8-10 AMP: Come close to God and He will come close to you. [Recognize that you are] sinners, get your soiled hands clean; [realize that you have been disloyal] wavering individuals with divided interests, and purify your hearts [of your spiritual adultery]. (9) [As you draw near to God] be deeply penitent and grieve, even weep [over your disloyalty]. Let your laughter be turned to grief and your mirth to dejection and heartfelt shame [for your sins]. (10) Humble yourselves [feeling very insignificant] in the presence of the Lord, and He will exalt you [He will lift you up and make your lives significant].

This message is a prophetic trumpet: an alarm, a clarion call from God to His people who have become entangled with the spirit of Babylon to come out of her because the day of Lord in which He will manifest the fullness of His glory in His church is upon us:

Joel 2:1 NIV: Blow the trumpet in Zion; sound the alarm on my holy hill. Let all who live in the land tremble, for the day of the LORD is coming. It is close at hand‚

2. The virgin church is characterized by Christians whose motive in coming to Christ is pure: hence the word virgin; virgin Christians are seeking God for moral and spiritual excellence in sharp contrast to the harlot church whose motives are no longer pure and are seeking God primarily for material and physical blessings. There are two sections of the virgin church: the wise virgins and the foolish virgins (Mt. 25:1-2). The foolish virgins do not pray for and receive the spirit of wisdom and revelation (Eph. 1:17-23) as a regular habit; they live and operate at the brazen laver having only a natural understanding of the Word of God: using it only for moral instruction (they are unable to receive prophetic and spiritual instruction from the Word because of a lack of revelation and spiritual understanding (Col. 1:9)). The wise virgins have progressed into the Holy Place and receive the 7 spirits of God (Is. 11:2, Rev. 4:5) as a daily habit including and most especially the spirit of wisdom and revelation.

It is instructive to note that all Christians are born-again as virgins: if they progress spiritually they become wise virgins; if they retrogress they slip into the harlot church.

3. The perfect church is made of Christians who are operating in the most holy place having cleansed out completely the sin-nature from their souls: wills, minds and emotions; and bodies by the blood (Heb. 13.20-21), the Word (1 Jn. 2.5) and the Spirit (1 Jn. 4.12-13).

2 Corinthians 7:1 MKJV: Then having these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilements of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.

Ephesians 5:26-27 MKJV: that He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the Word, (27) that He might present it to Himself as the glorious church, without spot or wrinkle or any such things, but that it should be holy and without blemish.

God is calling us to move out from the harlot church (if we have slipped there) and then progress from the virgin church into the perfect church by perfecting obedience by working in the Most Holy Place.

We need to be quick (with a turn-around time of minutes not of hours, days, weeks or months) to repent and rise up when we fall into sin:

Proverbs 24:16 MKJV: for a just one falls seven times, and rises up again; but the wicked shall fall into evil.

Matthew 18:21-22 MKJV: Then Peter came to Him and said, Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Until seven times? (22) Jesus said to him, I do not say to you, Until seven times; but, Until seventy times seven.

Remember that so long as our motives are pure, God gives us as many chances as we need to ultimately perfect obedience in our lives and so become perfect virgins!