The video is here.
Our premise (and experience) is that the Keys of the Kingdom (Mt 16:18-19) is ascending to Heaven’s courts and councils to “see” what is already bound and loosed so we can play our Kingdom role on earth (very practical). Let’s look at the context of Jesus’ promise (cf. Heiser, Chapter 32).
Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi (Mt. 16:13) and asked His disciples this question, “Who do men say that I am.” The disciples, and anyone with a Jewish background, know that this location is near Mt. Hermon. They also know the history of this particular mountain. It was the spot where the original divine council met to decide to go after the daughters of men, and also where they fell. This thought isn’t found in the Bible, but it was common Jewish knowledge from other popular literature at the time.
And they were, in all, two hundred and they came down on Ardis, which is the summit of Mount Hermon. And they called the mountain Hermon because on it they swore and bound one another with curses. Enoch 6:6
In Old Testament times Mt. Hermon was know for Baal worship. During the Greek and Roman period it was a center for worship of Greek fertility Gods and was known as the “Gates of Hell.” (see link). That’s the context for Jesus making this statement:
Mat. 16:18-20 – I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it. “I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and whatever you bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven. NASU
Jesus redemption is the answer for us, but it’s also the answer for the fall of this divine council and the invitation for us (as sons of God) to repopulate that council and displace powers and principalities over the nations. All creation is waiting in eager expectation for these new sons of God to be revealed and liberate the world from bondage and decay into the glorious freedom of sons (cf. Rom. 8:18-24).
The Rock – Roman Catholics understand that Jesus would build His church on the Rock (Peter). We understand the Rock is Jesus (1 Cor. 10:4). Heiser simply suggests that the rock was Mt. Hermon. The gospels often record Jesus as going up or going into a mountain to pray and be refreshed (e.g., Mt. 6:6; 14:23; 26:36: 28:16, Mk. 6:46, Lk. 5:16; 6:12, Jn. 6:15-17). He was going to heaven, into the presence of His Father. It wasn’t a doctrinal position, it was an experience in prayer.
When we connect the dots we can see Jesus restoring the divine council (us ascending) on the exact spot the original council rebelled. Jesus is the Key to the Kingdom and the rock, but more specifically, our act of ascending to the mountain (Heaven) is a spiritual gateway—the keys to the Kingdom of Heaven. It’s the exact key that allows us to “see” what is already bound and loosed (i.e., what the Father is doing) that constitutes our marching orders for what we bind and loose in our metron to bring His Kingdom to earth. When we’ve already seen it in heaven, we can pray and decree and do with an entirely different level of authority. We act like kings!
John 5:19-20 – I tell you the truth, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does. For the Father loves the Son and shows him all he does. Yes, to your amazement he will show him even greater things than these. [emphasis mine] NIV
Can you “see” that ascending and using your seer gift is instrumental in utilizing the Keys of the Kingdom?
Transformed by Heaven – The very next scene from this same geographic location on Mt. Hermon is this:
Mat. 17:1-9 – After six days Jesus took with him Peter, James and John the brother of James, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. There he was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as the light. Just then there appeared before them Moses and Elijah, talking with Jesus. Peter said to Jesus, “Lord, it is good for us to be here. If you wish, I will put up three shelters — one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.” While he was still speaking, a bright cloud enveloped them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased. Listen to him!” When the disciples heard this, they fell facedown to the ground, terrified. But Jesus came and touched them. “Get up,” he said. “Don’t be afraid.” When they looked up, they saw no one except Jesus. As they were coming down the mountain, Jesus instructed them, “Don’t tell anyone what you have seen, until the Son of Man has been raised from the dead.” NIV
So . . . The Jesus is now raised from the dead and we can tell everyone about going up to a mountain and seeing in heaven. We can tell them that it’s the Key to the Kingdom.
We’re transformed too! – The first thing we notice is Jesus is transformed in a remarkable way the disciples can clearly see (We are not told this is all a vision, so we assume it’s literal). The same Greek word for transfigured (metamorphoo, G3339) is used to clearly suggest we should have the same experience (on a mountain/in heaven):
Rom. 12:2 – Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is . . . [emphasis mine] NIV
2 Cor. 3:17-18 . . . where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit. [emphasis mine] NIV
Interactions on the mountain – This scene on Mt. Hermon is remarkable because Jesus isn’t just praying by himself. He’s talking to two other people (human) and God is talking to them. The whole experience scared the disciples (not surprising). And Peter offered to build a denomination!
Keys of the Kingdom – We can’t just write off things like this as mysticism and make excuses for not experiencing them ourselves. The only thing that makes sense is to have the same experiences ourselves. We’re being invited to ascend a mountain/stairway/gateway to heaven and see what’s going on up there. Conversations should be the norm, not the exception. And, we should “bring home the bacon” in terms of binding and loosing. These experiences leverage our effectiveness in making a difference on earth. They translate to our specific role in our mountain of culture to bless people and nations (Gen. 12:2-3) and to disciple nations (Mat. 28:19). That’s our ambassadorial commission. It shouldn’t be weird or mystical; it should be normal and practical. We’re being invited to make it so.
Quiz – After the resurrection Jesus is meeting with the disciples to cap everything off with the great commission. Where did they meet? Where do we meet with Jesus now?
Matt 28:16-19 – Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations . . . [emphasis mine] NIV
If you’re one of those young lions hungry to birth a reformation in the Netherlands, contact Marcel van den Berg http://opzoeknaarhetkoninkrijk.nl/
Podcast #5 with Tyler McCart
Podcast #3 and #4 Micro-church– The most recent interviews with Shae Bynes
Podcast #1 and Podcast #2 – fun interviews with Steve Reiter and John Ramstead
Books – Releasing Kings and Desire to Destiny
Heart Plan in Europe – HeartPlan.eu
For those of you who own a Business, join Larry Nault and myself at Building A Kingdom Company.
If you’re in education, please get acquainted with David Nycz at http://www.educationviaheart.com/
Releasing Kings is available in French “Libération des Rois pour le ministère dans le monde du travail” ISBN: 978-90-78643-08-1
Releasing Kings is available in Dutch “Moderne Koningen”
Your teaching never fails to amaze, empower and encourage me. The ascension I think is also referring to an awakening to our identity which then empowers us to take the knowledge and apply it. Thanks for your teaching.