W W W W World Wide Web Witness Inc. Home Page Contents Page for this Volume What is New
NOT THE DECLAMATIONS OR DISTILLATIONS
BUT THE DOCTRINE OF DEITY
The GLOBAL WARMING IN SPIRIT, and the
APOSTOLIC WARNING AND EXAMPLE -
A Message for a Disturbed Century
THE SITE FOR THE GOSPEL
The religion of the Redeemer, which is what Christianity is, the doctrine of the Cross of Christ (Galatians 6:14), of the resurrection of that self-same body which had been interred (I Corinthians 15:1-4), of the power of God (Romans 1:16), of the love that sent the Saviour from eternity to the factual act which translated this in practical terms to salvation (I John 4:9-10), to the work of the Holy Spirit which applied this to man and to his heart and ways (Ephesians 1:13-14, Romans 8:9), it is not a doctrine of philosophers (I Corinthians 1:20-25), though being the word of God it stands logically where those fall (II Corinthians 10:5, Romans 1:17ff., I Peter 3:15). It provides a record of realities, testable, viable, virtuous, assured (Acts 1:3), of the very acts of God.
It stands in explanation of the curse on this earth, and the intense blessedness available in it, though not of it. It shows where expiation is available for the guilt that this curse exposes (Roman 3:25), and where the unction and function of God is to be found (Ephesians 1), for those who seek Him (Isaiah 55). It is not in ideas (Jeremiah 23:21ff.), nor is it in summits of society, for society itself is under judgment (John 14:30, I John 5:19). It is in the word of God, what He has spoken (I Peter 1:21-23, John 15:7), and in the life of Christ, what HE has wrought on the earth, showing the dynamic of deity in life and the demission of sins through His death, with the vitalisation of new life in His own (John 14:19, Titus 3:3-7), which once given, brings immortality to pass (I Corinthians 15:50-58, Philippians 3:20-21).
So many trademarked 'versions' of it, from mystical aloofness to sentimental spookiness, from civic rights to revolutionary, to anti-revolutionary, have been made, that it is necessary in this our 21st century, to remind ourselves what it is. The word of God and the kernel of the Gospel within it (Galatians 1:6-9, I Peter 2:24-25, Revelation 22:18-19, Matthew 5:17-20), these are immutable, since God is, the truth, since Christ the Son is the truth, incapable of suspension, since God swears that He does not change (Malachi 3:6, cf. Psalm 102, Hebrews 1) so that forever it is settled in heaven (Psalm 119:89). The word of man for his own part, or to take over from God, sneaking in this or out that, this is forever doomed (II Corinthians 11, II Peter 2, Jude), since its presumption is equaled only by its ignorance. WHO, asks the apostle knows the thoughts of a man but his spirit, and WHO knows the thoughts of the heart of God but HIS SPIRIT! It is this which He sends to convey His authoritative word, His ONLY written one, to man, in the Bible (I Corinthians 2:9-13 cf. SMR Appendix C and D).
New christs, new attenuated words, new omissions, new bypassings, new simplifications, new conformities to this and that part of the culture of this or that people, these things are passed off now as if it were some kind of psychic tic: that man COULD not leave Christ or the Bible alone, but must USE and ABUSE both Him and His word, as to use His name for their own foolish thoughts. That was the exact position in the day of Jeremiah as it is to be in our own day (II Peter 2, I TImothy 4, II Timothy 3-4, Romans 1:17ff.) as the return of Christ draws near (cf. SMR Ch. 8, Answers to Questions Ch. 5). It is almost servile, the way in which the evil intentions and words of those who betray Christ are mounting to the skies, like a tsunami; but before the Lord, all this ferment and spray is tall only to an ant. It is but superficial and the hiss is not that of deep waters, but the serpent.
What was to be, now is. Indeed, more and more, error judged by the word of God, this is precisely what almost always now, is presented in its name in some lands, and they increase. This is far from saying there is no church left, but it is to say that most of the major denominations have had such a fall from the grace and truth of God, even in my own living memory, though it began well before that in its major slide, that they are coming increasingly to resemble the degree of stultification wrought by Romanism much earlier, when, backed by army, the papacy declared it was altogether necessary to salvation to be subject to the Roman pontiff (Unam Sanctam, Boniface VIII). It is still affirmed, though much more quietly, just as Christ's own word still affirms that after all, those who are CHRISTIANS are ALL brothers SO THAT there is only ONE teacher and master, Jesus Christ (Matthew 23:8-10). ONE is likewise their Father, even God.
This confusion of prelate with deity, on deity's own terms, even those of Christ who also declared in the context of His body, and 'eating it' as they did the Passover lamb, a sacrifice which He as the Lamb of God fulfilled in Himself, was at once dispelled in the same place where He declared (John 6:62-64) that the words He was speaking were SPIRIT AND LIFE. What if, He asked, the Son of Man ascend where He was before ?
How then could anyone imagine foolish ideas about physical bodies being eaten, when it came to Christ. ONCE He would fulfil it all and that would be eternally just (Hebrews 9:12-10:14) for "now once in the end of the Age, He has put away sin byt the sacrifice of Himself." Not often ? No, says Hebrews 9, for then He would have had to suffer often. The blood that counts was shed once, and sacrifice to be effectual must be both that of blood and that of suffering, neither of which is the Mass! This titanic imposition of the ideas of man on the clear teaching of God is so horrendous, that its outcome in the slow burning of many martyrs for rejecting such a thing, shows the intensity of the flame of desire in those who have made this human sacrifice their highest measure of spiritual communion! (cf. SMR pp. 1032ff.).
The pope is elevated above others, his word above others, his ruling above others, his new doctrines to be believed, and this 'master' and 'father' becomes one who intrudes into the SPECIALLY delimited demarcation of God Himself, by HIS OWN LIPS (Matthew 23:8-10). A man intruding where only God defines Himself to be ? Did the pope die for people ? did he rise from the dead ? Is he the focus, or is the Saviour, and ONLY GOD is the saviour (Isaiah 43:10-11), and there is no other name given to men by which they MUST be saved (Acts 4:11-12), neither that of pope or Mary. THESE: they are other names. They cannot enter, yet they do, making Romanism therefore a sect.
But first, consider this. The difference between sin-free God and sinner ? infinite. The presumption therefore ? infinite. The recent meeting on a 'mass' where the body Christ is statedly turned into a piece of bread, which is then worshipped, where some 400,000 met in Sydney with this in view, a papal mass, this but illustrates the scale of the idolatry that continues (cf. SMR pp;.1088Bff.).
As more and more churches decline from the Bible, characteristically and understandably these are becoming more and more tolerant of some of the sects, since in effect, their number is duplicating, and many former churches are merely new forms, through decay (Revelation 2:4-5 gives an example of the process, and 8:16 another) of sect.
What then is a sect ? It is a dishonest, a twisted, an unsustainable change of what is written as sole, whole doctrine of deity,
by addition (which as
with witnesses to an accident changes things), or
by subtraction (talk of
dynamic cultural change and the like is merely theory for the fact,
intrusion of alien perspectives which neither are generated
The falling away that Paul denotes in II Thessalonians 2, is the real dynamic of change, that which is following II Peter 2 elaborate network of false prophets, false teachers arising "among you"*1, from your own midst. These will take the unwary in itheir course, like a river of molten lava, constantly extending; and they will at last bring many so driven, to the explicit worship of man, by means of the antichrist, that "man of sin" who in II Thessalonians 2, is found admiring himself in a kind of self-adulation, making the element confusion of thinking that he, a man, is yet God.
Implausible as this might have seemed once, yet we must remind ourselves that the Roman Empire actually DID REQUIRE you in terms of religion, to worship the Emperor. What a truly beautiful account there is of the aged church patriarch, Polycarp, who confronted by would-be executioners because having served Christ for some 86 years, he could not even consider betraying Him who had done so much and been so much to him, said so.
However, his executioners sat down to a meal with him, and gave him the requested hour for prayer. That he could have escaped before they came, is the more interesting in that he forbore to use this method, declaring, "The will of the Lord be done." In this way, his actions live in an eccentric world, with a stability, spirituality and composure much to be admired, being so felicitously sure-footed, keen-sighted and charitable.
Concerned for the welfare of those sent to slay him (that is, unless he were willing to give to Caesar the garments of God, incense prayer and lordship), he gave them no trouble, but ensured they were refreshed after their journey. Stating, "I do not intend to do what you advise," he willingly allowed the execution, for what ? It was for a congenital inability and a voluntary incapacity to worship the emperor, directly or indirectly, to give to him what is for God only. Born twice, once of God and a member of His family, it seemed to him as it is, ludicrous even to consider disowning by what he lives. It would be still more ludicrous to disown the One who died for you! nd yet more derisible to depart from Him who, risen from the dead, made death no final count any more (cf. Hebrews 2:14-18, I Cor. 15).
There are more ways than one of making such a betrayal, but this was the pet method then, instituted by Rome and applied murderously to many. WORSHIP what is not God! or take steps equivalent, imputing to what is merely creation, or part of it, what is part of the majesty and praise of God only.
The phenomenon both of idolatry and of sects, then, this is hardly new. The papacy has had weird claims, such as that of pope Boniface VIII, who conceived himself as greater than man, being "alone most high over all the earth," whereas the King of France was, in his words, to be compared to a worm in such a presence as this, that of the papacy! Using the language of deity, he sought that those opposing him in his majestic conceptions about himself might "perish for ever that they may know" of his heights of being, authority and power, his papal office set above that of mere men. Whose office then ? Was he talking of that of the Lord ? No, not at all: the person in question, so referenced by the pope, WAS the pope himself. Remember, altogether necessary to be subject to the Roman pontiff, when NO OTHER NAME is given among men by which they may be saved.
Alone over all the earth! the pope ... God says that HE ALONE is most high over all the earth. What an aweful conflict, man against God using GOD'S OWN NAME! Here is the acme of treachery and the burden of untruth.
"For the LORD most high is terrible; he is a great King over all the earth" (Psalm 47:2). Again, Isaiah 2:109-17 declares a very different scenario in terms of who is who:
"Enter into the rock, and hide in the dust,
From the terror of the Lord
And the glory of His majesty.
The lofty looks of man shall be humbled,
The haughtiness of men shall be bowed down,
And the Lord alone shall be exalted in that day.
For the day of the Lord of hosts
Shall come upon everything proud and lofty,
Upon everything lifted up—
And it shall be brought low—
Upon all the cedars of Lebanon that are high and lifted up,
And upon all the oaks of Bashan;
Upon all the high mountains,
And upon all the hills that are lifted up;
Upon every high tower,
And upon every fortified wall;
Upon all the ships of Tarshish,
And upon all the beautiful sloops.
"The loftiness of man shall be bowed down,
And the haughtiness of men shall be brought low;
The Lord alone will be exalted in that day ..."
Note that the words made bold (added here for emphasis) are here a type of refrain. Alone exalted on the earth ? INFINITELY beyond man, GOD ALONE has this place and He alone is Lord (Isaiah 45:5,18, Ephesians 4:4).
What then is the good of this unprepossessing, presumptuous servant! this papal phenomenon, this one above princes! How many times does one need to contradict the emphatic teaching of the Bible in order to become awake ? (cf. SMR p. 99*1A).
Since "he who desires to be great among you, let him be your servant" (Matthew 20:26), this papal pretension was of course in line to be an eternal recipe for humiliation and shame.
Thus a pope might challenge any opponents to consider his greatness before being difficult against them, and it was the papacy that pursued pilgrims to the death, even using an army against the Waldensians, who moved to Italian mountains, but were sought out by the most implausible form of love.
That ? how was this love shown ? It was by the infliction of death on those who put Christ above the papacy, and His divine commands in contradistinction to this riotous self-elevation of the papacy above the role appointed by Christ to man. Thus some of these popes even had the very audacity and literal impertinence to seek to kill those whose saving faith was in Christ's name! This of course, exactly fulfilled John 16:2.
Certainly, in the light of Matthew 23:8-10, it took some daring to obey a mere man as if he could divulge and deliver whatever he decided should be added to the Bible, as one looks in the brilliance of I John 2:19-27, where you need not that man teach you, since the Lord does by His Spirit. This is not to dismiss helpers, but to divorce pretenders and authoritative usurpers. Each must stand, each being persuaded in his own mind.
These words in I John, like those of Christ seen in Matthew, disallowed the presumption, and forbad the erection of such pomposity and illicit pretensions. Yet it was done, so that the requirements for life of God, became the utterances of man, which being forbidden in any such role, became the practical emblems not of emperor worship, but papal glory. This was the transition and Romanism is therefore well named: it is the religion of Rome, former capital of a vast and powerful empire, and the cross received the same defilement whether by autocratic Roman Emperor, or arrogance of papacy.
No Christian could consider such a thing, though even Archbishop Cranmer was tempted in the name of church unity and peace, which he so greatly desired, for a very short time to yield. Famously however, he showed courage of conviction, after this slip, by actually burning his right hand first as the Romanists of Britain put him to burn at the stake.
Why ? It was because with this very same hand, he had signed away his protestation against the papacy. Quickly, however, on reflection, he denied his error, making retraction before all from the pulpit, and re-affirming a biblical faith in Jesus Christ, that ONE LORD. It was THIS Lord whom Boniface VIII could not comprehend as such, according to his own words. It was for THIS Lord, this same Jesus (Acts 1) who is to return again in a way like that in which He left, for whom Cranmer died. Like Peter, he denied his Lord for a moment; but like Peter he gave his life in the end, exalting this same Lord and not man, glorifying God.
There have indeed been many other elevations of man where only God may be found.
Mao with his little red book, Stalin with his high marks given to Marx with his worship of an imaginary process*2, Hitler with his bemusement with racial pools and grandeur and glory for a phase of human life, in a setting of highly placed Rosenburg and his mystique*3, these all played god, taking this or that of His unique prerogatives, ruinously to themselves, whether personally or representatives.
The case thus is not without precedent, early and late, ancient and modern, that of this infatuation with man, this adoration at times, this worship, this provision for man or his words with the awesome dignity of the living God. It is He who, having spoken, suffers no additions, let alone in His name, and having devised the Gospel from eternity (Revelation 13:8, 14:6, Ephesians 1:4), allows no mutations! (Galatians 1).
Part of the Gospel is the power of God (Romans 1:16). This is firstly to provide truth, secondly to provide a divine sacrifice because of the truth of man's sinfulness, thirdly to provide the exemplar of the resurrection, proving the point of pardon, just as Christ proved His power to heal as in Mark 2, by POWER in healing under a test situation. Indeed, the Lord has openly and repeatedly put it to open test situations, so precise, that these might have been devised as an experiment. The conditions are very stringent. What is done truly in God's own name can never fail once. This standard Christ exhibited, even in dealing at the level of divine miracle, and thus occasioned the inane desire to kill the One they could in no way confound or answer. They are not alone. Many will merely kill the light which glimmers in them, and seek escape by crucifying Him again in their own hearts, dismissing Him on the ground of desire.
We must make no mistake, this denial of the power of God, so common in our generation and indeed century, is part of what is predicted for the area of time just before Christ returns (II Timothy 3:1-5). It is the period of that falling away denoted by Paul, of that use of Christians as merchandise for making latter day false prophets rich as Peter foretold. It is quite systematic.
The direction of flow is one, downwards. The variety of methods of degradation, however, are many.
In one variety, you talk in tongues and this is sanctity, or eminently to be desired, or desired for all, or a sign of conversions, instead of being a case of 5 words with the mind in a public assembly, better than 10,000 in tongues (I Corinthians 14:19). That is the low rating Paul gives to such a gift! That is quite some change!
Again, biblically, you do not talk in tongues jointly, but in 2 or 3 AT MOST, separately. You interpret ALWAYS, each one, in intelligible language. If this cannot be done, there are to be NO tongues. That is the position in I Cor. 14.
Sometimes this exaggerated, wrongly glorified tongues tempest is related to Pentecost, though it was as far from that as the East from the West. Thus at Pentecost, divine power was given for a staggering event: the formal, epochal transmission of the truth to an international crowd at a popular feast day, that the MESSIAH had come, had been crucified, had risen on the third day as biblically foretold and had power of a missionary kind, indeed of a kind predicted by Joel (who was quoted).
The result of this power in this case was simple: internationals could understand the message. It was as if they had all sat at desks in some UN setting, and translations of what was being said at the rostrum ere provided. Thus those who, because of their linguistic narrowness, could not understand the Gospel in a polyglot assembly of persons at a feast time in Jerusalem, by this internalised translation wrought by the Spirit of God, knew what was being said, could share in this foundation day address from the Church of Jesus Christ by an apostle.
Foreign languages were granted as a birthday present to the Gospel Church of God, the Christian Church (Acts 2), just as in Corinth much later (I Cor. 12, 14), the opposite phenomenon arrived, making potentially intelligible speech unintelligible*4.
At Pentecost, what those not able to understand Peter heard, heard speech in this, that it was PRECISELY INTERPRETABLE, and interpreted. That was the objective. It was reached. It was practical, missionary in impact, effective in overcoming on that great day, what later many would have to study for years to overcome: a linguistic barrier to the Gospel which was as it is, for all men. This UNDERLINED that facta! This supernatural translation was different from ordinary language in this, that it required a supernatural power to do this.
Yet the basic speech of Peter was in ordinary, comprehensible language, for those who spoke tha language. In the case of the Corinthian church and its tongues, the symbols, the sound uttered, were not surveyable in any systematic manner in order to grant meaning. There was NO language which they held, known to any. They required a miraculous action by God, just like healing, to turn them into speech which could be understood in the assembly in its normal linguistic way. Thus at Corinth, normalcy was omitted, and what sounded like gabble, a thing of no known language, was given out. ONLY an interpreter COULD understand this, and he HAD to provide the interpretation of the 2 or 3 cases allowable, or else ... no show! Nothing then was permitted of this kind at all.
Thus those who put a special emphasis on the Corinthian type of tongues (only misnamed as Pentecostal, since it was virtually the OPPOSITE of that) were in contradiction of Paul, and are so to this day. For the apostle's part, Paul gave dramatic de-emphasis of tongues in many ways, the number, the place in a service, the comparison with sound teaching, the limitation lest it interfere with the more important proclamation of the word of God, all these things exerted a strong DOWNWARD pressure on tongues in the Corinthian mode.
Not to be forbidden, these tongues-speakers in the church became nevertheless almost like prisoners. Their ways were guarded carefully, lest they create a diversion and not edification. EVERYTHING in the Church services MUST edify, said Paul I Corinthians 14:8,14-15,19,26). There was NO ROOM for uninterpreted tongues, if indeed you had any at all! No interpretation simply meant no tongues. This is the apostolic teaching. What varies from this is merely the erection of one more sect. While the severity of the heterodoxy varies, the thrust is all but a mockery of Paul.
Tongues in this sense, thus readily becomes like the intrusion of forbidden authority through human personalities, like popes. In the traditional Romanist sense, there is a bull or declamation of some kind from top authority; in the intrusive Pentecostal sense, where "the Lord is saying" becomes a noveau-tradition entering in the contemporary field, there is a similar result very often. Someone is adding to the Bible by telling the assembly the latest from heaven.
This is part of the same transformation of the simple power of the Lord, to the complex spiritual pathologies of man, with false prophets or procedures a bait for the unwary. It becomes a substitute for His clear speech and His Gospel, a decline from it which is not only predicted, but perceptible. Now it has happened and it rages. Thus increasingly, Pentecostal tongues phenomena are linked with Romanist cases of tongues, and the two tend towards joint sharing, to fellowship in tongues. This is another contempt for the Bible: for since Rome is against the word of God, and tongues joins this body to Pentecostals rather freely, it is apparent that this misused tongues concept becomes a paste for joining what God has separated*4A.
So do many sects, many wolves, many in sheep's clothing (cf. Matthew 7) parade and display their fangs, dressed up by lupine dentistry, to look like very pale lips.
BY CONTRAST WITH IRRATIONAL RECKLESSNESS
AND IN COLLISION WITH IT
In contrast to these things, we shall shortly see from Acts 20 and surrounding text, something of the real thing, the actual case, the example of the Apostle Paul who tells us ( I Corinthians 11:1), "Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ."
As to Paul, his conversion was of the most public and dramatic kind.
Stricken from his horse in the stunning impact of a celestial light which was visible to others, but communicative to himself (rather like the case for Daniel as in 10:7ff.), was met by Jesus Christ. What was his business when this happened ?
In fact, at that time, he was performing in an acting sense, an admirable imitation of some of the earlier Nazi work against Jews, but his target was people who followed Jesus Christ. That is, Christians were being identified, hounded, imprisoned, whipped at his authority, in view of his appointment by the Jewish authorities, who preferred their Temple without the foundation of Christ, and hence sought to obliterate or at least hobble Christians, just as they had begun their work on Christ Himself. It is clear that, in general terms, judgment apart, which is not a way of life, but a sentence of death, as from a judiciary, it is not religion which is the killer, but intemperate religion, which confronting God, finds its come-uppance in such a degree that it rests in violence where truth will not do.
When will truth not do ? It will not do when it is not being told. Only force or trickery then remains. Christ was impossible to trick. With Paul it was, because of the Spirit of God, a vast difficulty. Christ then was killed, and Paul persecuted, eventually killed also, the One as the Ransom for man, the other as the ambassador for Christ, not a little in bonds! Indeed, the sheer saga of his sufferings for Christ because of dutiful productivity with the Gospel, transmission of truth in Asia Minor and in Europe, is seen not only in the book of Acts, but in his summaries found in I Corinthians and II Corinthians 4! In a way, these read rather like Hebrews 11, dealing with the heroes of the faith over the years.
Paul however was converted to Christ, and ceased the Judaistic slaughter - though in numbers it may not have been great, whipping and imprisonment more the norm, yet as Paul at first fought Christ, he did it, like so much of Islam today, with violence! it is, in general, the irrational alternative.
Indeed, in the end, it is the lie marching on truth which is the killer. It serves itself here and there, but its end is the same, except they repent, whatever sect, secular or religious, with whatever mystique, is in view. A secular sect ? this is a parallel to a religious one, but the term has point when you come to the Western world, where much of secular faith - unreasoned commitment to contrariness against God and His word - is a residuum from a former time when the Gospel moved like a bushfire into Europe. In the case of Communism, showed a fascinating parallel between the Gospel terms and those of Communism, a sort of secularised reflective image*4B.
Millenia of freedom so to march have been assiduously and indeed sedulously used by mankind, in a variety of efforts to unseat the Mighty Monarch, God Almighty; but obviously, this cannot work. It is tried anyway, as if by so many rebellious, manic-compulsive children, who cannot take their eyes off power; and so, avoiding the power of God in the process, their spree done (it may last as in the case of the Inquisition, for centuries, but it goes), they flop in the grasses of fantasy, like worms.
Alas for man, that he cannot cease such conduct, whether from atheism, or agnosticism, or religious fervour or from philosophic speciousness. He asks for judgment, and though God is slow to anger, inherits it, though for the time being, in attenuated form. He seeks to drive hard bargains, but finds it is with the devil, not God, he is bargaining.
One remembers all too vividly an actual real life case of an individual, once a second hand car salesman, who quite literally was planning to make a contract with God, a special deal, in which God would yield on this and that point, and he would do this and the other. Man is not unlike that, although often he does not even bother to address God; but in his imaginative manipulation, at other times, he seeks to replace the word of God with his own, even on occasion seeking to use SOME OF IT, in order to gain authority, and pontificating with his quite alien additions. The pope himself is merely one explicit example of this (cf. SMR pp. 911ff. and loc. cit.).
Mark 7:7ff. with Jeremiah 23, Revelation 22:18-19, show the opinion of God on such antics.
There is room neither for bargain nor for change, and procrastination merely erects the barriers of habit, as if a drowning man wanted, ludicrously, to have a smoke first, before being rescued.
This world has been so sunk in sin, literally sunk in the time of the global flood (Genesis 6, II Peter 3), that God has used many and various ways of alerting it, in order that it might be saved (John 3:17). Although in fact, as one organ, this world will not be saved, yet the scope of the divine offer and sovereign effusion of grace toward mankind is shown in the Gospel, which declares the tenor and scope of His love and of His mercy toward all in His outgoings of grace (cf. Great Execrations, Great Enervations, Greater Grace Chs. 7 and 9).
To be sure, Israel once invaded Canaan at the request of God, but this was a once-for-all impact, made for the establishment of Israel, as a base for the revelation of the Bible, and for the Christ whom it focussed as Saviour. Moreover, it was a matter of a judgment which in that case God chose to implement through one race, Israel, on another area of various races, Canaan. It was far from racism, since Israel had to meet the most pressing standards as an agency for God, ethical and spiritual, moral and legal; and it suffered both immensely and intensely in multiple invasions, predicted quite clearly, as for centuries it abused the role given (Deuteronomy 32, Isaiah 14).
No one likes having his words mixed with those of others, while his signature remains. But let us return to the famed instance of the power of God used in one episode, in war, in the case of Israel (cf. SMR pp. 1175ff.).
That invasion of Canaan by Israel, then, was a form of judgment explicitly and integrally part of God's revelation to Israel, which had to be moved from enduring slavery and partial genocide in Egypt, to its invasive role*5. This stopped at appointed boundaries and in this unforgettable manner, God set up the spotlight on Israel and its productions, as also for what was to be granted to it. It was one nation at one time selected for one mission, culminating in the coming of the Messiah and accompanied by the presentation of the word of God to man. As there is one God, so there was one such mission, to one Messiah in one Gospel.
So selected as a servant for this task, Israel accordingly has been a focus for foul play, whenever its follies made this possible; for the hatred of man for God is only too clearly shown in his hatred of Christ. Even when the love of God was shown in the face of Christ Jesus (II Corinthians 4:6), deity incarnate, yes, and where the sacrifice for sin which God foretold was wrought, in the very body of Christ, still man sought to wreck it all. Outwitted, despite the predictions of God's beautiful intention, man in hatred actually implemented the very sacrificial plan the Lord had devised, making himself look such an ass! Imagine a revolutionary implementing the plans of the king, in his violence against this Monarchy! (I Corinthians 2:7ff.)
Now, with the whole world under judgment (Acts 17:26-31, Romans 3:19-20), we see the light of Christ in the love which is so profound and unmistakable, once man is found to be willing to find God and not merely lampoon or leave Him.
It is so simple. Our contemporary knowledge of genetics (so brilliantly brought up to date in many matters in the latest Journal of Creation, Vol. 22 (2), 2008, pp. 60-74, 79-104) has been so fascinatingly growing over the last few decades*6.
It has involved
such a prodigy of system,
of language in code,
of orders to dispose of matter like a field marshal with his troops,
such an intricacy of allied and intimately correlated forces and items,
on prepared pathways and in simultaneities and progressions of legislated kind,
equipped with copying power and editing facilities
making a sheer marvel of accuracy for billions of cells in their divisions and apportionment on the genetic horizon,
that it literally teaches science the most profound lessons in command and miniaturisation.
The subject of this growing genetic knowledge, the genetic texture itself, exhibits the profundities of multiple and chronologically exact specifications and attainment, as the scenario proceeds as if that of task-masters with their slaves.
In its multi-systematic integrality, in code and command, in bustle and action, in concert and in conceptual interlocking via the significance of symbol in the arena of the structure for the actual implementation of command, it attains something. That ? it is by far the greatest material object to meet the definition of design, that exists on this earth. As such, it makes clear the precision with which this design (Deity and Design ...) has been assembled, so that reason, symbol, order, command, direction, intimation, access, process work in a glorious profusion of technical prodigies which makes the body of man.
Why then is there also on this earth, such a multiplicity of gross events, stinging disturbances ? Man had better first ask himself, why as a creature, HE is so adroit in calling for these by wickednesses of cruelty and obscuration of thought and life in endless maimings and murderings! But the answer is there.
You find it in Genesis Ch. 3, Romans 8:17ff., Romans 5:1-12. Man is a fallen species, or better, KIND. He has transgressed and is now liable to do it without even realising, or if awakened, without power to resist, or if with some power, yet blind to the nature of the adversary. However, he does not sin with impunity, far less with immunity; yet neither is he rubbed out, like a simple mistake on paper. With persons, the case is more profound than with simple verbal propositions!
The mosquito, the locust, the spider, the fly, the grass-hopper are mere illustrations, with erosion and hurricane, typhoon and tornado, tsunami and earth-quake, cancer and plague, of the adverse actions also authorised. As the Creator created, so to miscreants there comes an alliance with desecration and a series of termini to truth, which in turn invite the desolations which breach of truth ensures.
Thus hyper-precision (David phrased it long ago in Psalm 139*7) is met with widespread, specific and sometimes ingeniously created designs of devastation. These were used specifically against Pharaoh, in God's plan for Israel deliverance from a nationally imposed slavery; just as and at various times in rebuke in Israel (cf. Joel, Amos 4). God is no respecter of persons, as if to bend truth for the sake of a cover-up.
What then is wrong ?
Why has precision met so many devastations for precision ? why has such sophistication of design, of potency in man, met such degeneration and tragedy ? It is the subject, man: if he will not subject himself to his Maker, then he is subjected instead to the dislocations of life which attest its futile misuse.
Let us take an illustration.
As our genes deteriorate*8 over time, so moreover does the environment harm them in specific ways. How could they come, then, into being in the face of such innate degradation over time, in such a system as this ? and why are they so roughly treated in so many things ?
They came as all design, because they were created, and they go, as is the trend in all design, because as created things, they are in a non-ideal setting, like a child in detention class. It is DESIGNED to be that way (cf. Romans 8:18, 5:1-12). It is because God has cursed man's environment. He has deliberately*9 made man who views design as chance to have every 'chance' of being disturbed, in fact, like the chaff which the wind blows away (Psalm 1). There is irony to meet man's making of his neck as iron, and being stiff-necked, refusing to bend to reality, while elevating himself, personally or racially, into that ultimate and pestiferous racism, human racism, gods to come!
One sect*9A already actually teaches this, as if wanting to iron out the irony, but in fact aggravating the case against it all the more. In fact, Isaiah centuries before Christ ruled out the riotous calumnies on the word of God, which such teaching implies (cf. Isaiah 43:10-11 in conjunction with Isaiah 45:21. God has no duplicates, none to precede, none to succeed, none to join, as in Psalm 96:4-5, 90:1-2, and judgment is the certain result on such unpersonable aspirations to impersonate! (as in Isaiah 2:10-11).
Thus man seeks to overcome the limits and realities which God has set in his own body, mind and spirit, and to make new words, ways and life for himself in his own will. However, the Bible will not expand to include these things, nor will the narrow path become a highway for them (cf. Highway to Hell, Aviary of Idolatry).
In fact, a recent article in the Vol. 2, 2008 Journal of Creation exposes the fact that so far from leading on to greater things, mutations which are many, though small, in man, are deteriorative and the progress is in fact regress towards an ultimate extinction for the human race, at the physical level. Far faster, however, than this is the downgrading that comes from wilful deterioration, not of genes but of morals, worship and society, and the end of this world is coming in multiplied convulsions, military, social, psychological, geological, just as foretold. Man is asking for what he gets, and this so loudly, that only mercy has slowed the finale down, for the time (cf. II Peter 3:9).
It is the profoundest of mercies that Christ according to God's own word, will return for His 'wheat' before the end comes, and will adorn this world so that the earth will for a time be filled with the knowledge of the glory of God as the waters cover the sea (Habakkuk 2:14, Isaiah 11). This rule will be terminal, however, for the earth (Isaiah 11, Psalm 2), and will not be a sponge for misuse of liberty, but give scope for the beauty of truth, as the King Himself is present. But then ? then the world must go, as in Revelation 20; for as to the heavens and the earth, "there was no place found for them" ! Heaven and earth, said Christ, WILL PASS AWAY. In contrast ?
"But My words will not pass away!" (Matthew 24:35). Whatever the creature does, the handbook remains the same, both in creation and its care, and in remedy and its way, and with that, judgment and the outcome: insulation is ONLY by the Redeemer who is ONLY Jesus Christ (Acts 4:11-12).
As to this world, biblically as actually, it is inveterate in evil; and no periods of time will ever remove the simple fact that if people insist on missing the bus of salvation now (John 5:24), rejecting Christ's salvation, then there are no more tickets then (John 3:19,36, 8:24, 15:21-23).
What then ?
Man's worst deterioration, the spiritual-moral-personal, is the cause of the lesser, the physical, the environment, that in increasingly threatening space, laden with asteroid potentials (cf. Revelation 8:10). It is man's wilful debacles which are arm to the environmental, the genetic and the social decay and increasing morbidity. He is gambling with God; but God does not play.
As to this earth, He has not as yet removed it, though He is on record with His intention to do just that, just as He was in His intention to send the Messiah at a given date with specified miracles and actions, with assigned point and purpose. When He does remove the earth (Isaiah 51:6, II Peter 3, Matthew 24:35), then its "works" will be "burnt up", which is doubtless the best that can be done with them.
Over time, and most mercifully, God has sent word of salvation, and then salvation itself, in Jesus Christ, and with Him, He has sent word of the time for its reception, to be gauged not at a date this time, but through the preliminaries which will announce it (as they now have done ... cf. Answers to Questions Ch. 5). Then will be His second coming, for His own and then with them He will return to this earth for the vindication and exhibition of righteousness (cf. Psalm 2, Isaiah 51, 4, Micah 4, Habakkuk 2:14, Isaiah 11, Revelation 20). It is all very pleasant, once getting beyond the deliberately free impact of the curse, a person finds God and awaits His good pleasure, with relish.
The power of God is always adequate protection, the mercy and the truth of God always provides adequate inspection, and the grace of God provides sufficient understanding. Thus called, Christians may happily set about realising what this world and this race really is, and being regenerated, act like it (Titus 3:3-7), in the grace and security of God's own salvation, bought with a price which HE ONLY has paid (cf. Galatians 3, 5, Romans 3:23ff., Ephesians 2:1ff.).
Thus this world has many kinds of tempests, some in judgment, some in folly, all with detriment. The program is for their increase, the mental, the spiritual, the moral and the disciplinary. Some people are helped when they see the grand sweep of events. Yet help is what all need, such is the coming duress.
Thus not all the Lord's creations are to go. Why is this so ? It is because man has an exemption clause, called the Gospel, which allows the curse to be borne by Christ: the curse for sin from the first coming rapidly, and travelling in company with further decline, to its worst.
As to this exemption, God has inserted this in the 'contract' by means of the incarnation, crucifixion and purity of Christ who, sinless, became sin (that is, a sin offering) for us (II Cor. 5:17-21). Since God CANNOT LIE*10, a fact continually confirmed by endless fulfilments to the letter of what He says, a fact in which He is quite explicit (Matthew 5:17-20), and man for eternal life, MUST LISTEN, but by and large, will not (give a few millions perhaps, out of increasing billions), thre are many emblems of death, not least scores of millions of murders by unscrupulous politicians over the last 70 years.
Not satisfied with strife over nations, many as we have seen, even dare to contravert, invade, change and mutate the word of God, which nevertheless remains just as it was, in the most widely purchased book in recorded history, two things have happened.
Man is now setting sail for an inglorious sunset, in which darkness and not light, is not only the end of this incendiary day, but will constitute a night in which no man can work (John 9:4).
This tragic terminal period, to the lost rather like a terminal cancer, not in but on the bodies politic and recklessly religious, will become with its spiritual epidemic becoming so vile as to grow almost endemic,a night in which, if there is any glow, it is lurid.
Man, then, increasingly en bloc, is on collision course with God, as specified in Revelation 19:19. It is therefore fitting to consider something of the EXEMPTION CLAUSE, known as the Gospel, and its mode of PRESENTATION by Paul, before the spiritual inanities of the present, which though predicted are strangely prevalent, became almost like bread, the thing to take, for many.
Against this luridity, look at the light which shone first upon Paul, and then through him, and the word which at first he transgressed, but which then was granted, as to an apostle, through Him, the very word of the living God. It is this which remains, and its Lord who gave it.
The Apostle and the Acts
1 INCURSION OF LIGHT
Paul, having made himself sufficiently clear to his hearers at Ephesus to be near to being slaughtered, this apostle, so diligently diplomatic as to be described as one who set the world upside down (at Thessalonica, Acts 17:6), made the principles clear to the elders. Specially these had been called from the nearby church in Ephesus, a city in which there had been a pandemonium about their goddess, because of the clarity of Paul's teaching.
In his earlier missionary tour into Greece, he had needed to leave Thessalonica at night, such was the commotion, just as in Philippi before that, he had been put in prison, only to be delivered by an earthquake, which not only loosed him from bonds, but at length, his gaoler from the guilt of sin. That came when this officer was converted after Paul had acted as NOT OF THIS WORLD, in kindness and responsibility (Acts 16). Overcome, the man asked, What must I do to be saved! Paul told him, and saved he was. Persecution there was; but In all these places, churches arose with strength! On this occasion, then, cited in Acts 20, he met with elders from areas about Ephesus, at Miletus.
How did the apostle get there ? After the ministry at Ephesus, Paul had returned to Greece, and it was on his return from that mission work that he came to Miletus, after meeting with brethren at Troas, who as we learn from Acts 20, "came together to break bread."
When did they do this ? It was on "the first day of the week", just as the Corinthians took up their offerings on that self-same day (I Cor. 16), just as Christ gave peace on that very day, and Thomas came to the next gathering on the same day, and Pentecost occurred on the same triumphant day which of necessity was the R-day for resurrection-day of Christ, the greatest expression of love and power jointly, ever made!
It is of course the New Testament day of rest, and wise are they who rest in the Lord on His day, not occupied with normal necessities. It is a horror that Seventh Day Adventists so slight both the Bible and its Lord in this area.
Paul however had been unexceptionable with the Ephesians. He pointed out how he had been "serving the Lord with all humility, with many tear and trials which happened to me by the plotting of the Jews" and how to them he had "kept back nothing that was helpful," and "taught you publicly and from house to house." He testified to Jew and Gentile "repentance toward God and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ." Here was the climax of millenia, the Gospel of the grace of God with its own day of rest, its own day of resurrection, its own Messiah, gloriously fulfilling what was old, and putting new wine in new wineskins. Paul preached with no little enthusiasm and skill, but with an awesome sense of responsibility, which did nothing to reduce his concern and kindness, as this culmination of the Ages was broadcast to mankind (cf. Titus 2-3).
. This personal example, which he set, was intended to help them to be clear, unambiguous, unequivocal, to say what they meant, mean what they said and having faith, both to look like it and act like it, in word and in deed.
2 INVASION OF DARKNESS
As he rehearsed his challenge and doctrine, Paul intimated this: he was going to Jerusalem as one bound in spirit. He was quite well aware that this was what God wanted of him, and again, blessed are those who are NOT vague, but as needed, know what the will of the Lord is (Ephesians 5:17, cf. Psalm 32, Acts 16, 13).
It was in fact to lead to his imprisonment, going to Rome under guard, becoming most notable in the imperial centre, and indeed, it was to those at Rome to which he had addressed his most famous epistle, that to the Romans.
Here then was a hinge in the door of open opportunity for Paul, though it was little short of amazing how the Lord worked these great things. A prisoner apostle to penetrate to the heights of Rome! But then, God is highly original, and it is best to wait on Him VERY CLOSELY (Psalm 27:14).
In fact, Paul EVEN KNEW that in going to Jerusalem as called by the Spirit of God within Him, the Spirit of Christ (Acts 20:23), "chains and tribulation await me." How is that for prosperity Christianity! He CHOSE to follow the Lord INTO both chains and tribulation. He was not secretly seeking vast returns on capital, elevation, acclaim or prosperity, except this last in one thing, getting the job done in the love of Christ. Why, it is the exact opposite of that foolish doctrine of material prosperity! (cf. James 4:4).
As to those at Ephesus, in summary, Paul declared this: "I have not shunned to declare to you the whole counsel of God." There is no question of leaving things to later!
He enjoined the elders therefore to "take heed to yourselves", to be diligent, to be watchful, to be alert, to be conscientious as he had been, to omit nothing, to secure the safety of the flock and to teach and preach diligently, as their gifts lay.
ARE SEPARATE AND BARED,
AND HAVE THEIR OWN WAY OF SEPARATING!
What made this the more urgent was a very practical fact, and it applies today even more than it did then (Jeremiah 23:2021, Matthew 24:24, II Peter 2:1ff.).
The special call for watchfulness was like one from a helicopter which had spotted submarines in the vicinity of an aircraft carrier. WOLVES, in this case (you even have a 'wolf pack' with submarines) were about to attack: that is, unspiritual people of subtlety and underlying ferocity, without heart, scavengers and assailants spiritually. These would disturb their peace and eat their lambs unless they showed watchfulness and diligence.
This is PRECISELY what is not now being shown in multiplied 'churches' which
alas are in many cases becoming almost farcical in their treachery and false
teaching, as if clowning their parts for amusement; though in fact, their
conduct is deadly, moribund, mortal! The falling away foretold (II Thess. 2) is NOW so gross
that it is almost the case that one looks ODD if one is not fallen! Churches
that stand are now becoming so suave and sophisticated in their use
of ALPHA, the congregation
with unbelievers fellowship mode
of the WCC, that erratic
post-Christian array (cf. SMR pp.
of the United Religions
Movement (News 121),
of theTemple of
and with almost any other idolatry or heresy, that simple faith in the Lord's Christ (Luke 2:26) according to the Lord's Book is becoming much more rarefied in many nations. It is growing harder to find, like pure water on the planet, as seas and rivers pollute, lakes are affronted and water levels drop. Men are trying to unite the disparate, talk out the true, relativise the absolute, combine contradictories, and hence devalue realities and act in despite of the Bible, the only divinely authorised communication of God to man (cf. SMR, Reason, Revelation and the Redeemer, Light Dwells with the Lord's Christ, Design and Deity ...).
However, the Bible will not expand to include them, nor will the narrow path become a highway for them (cf. Highway to Hell, Aviary of Idolatry). In fact, a recent article in the Vol. 2, 2008 Journal of Creation exposes the fact that so far from leading on to greater things, mutations which are many, though small, in man, are deteriorative in overall resultant, and the progress is in fact regress towards an ultimate extinction.
Far faster, however, than this is the downgrading that comes from wilful deterioration, not of genes but of morals, worship and society, and step by step we are moving towards the end of this world, as we find pointers coming in multiplied convulsions, military, social, psychological, geological, just as foretold. Man is asking for what he gets, and this so loudly, that only mercy has slowed the finale down, for the time.
Great now is the need to shepherd the church, God Himself our resource, with vigilance, fearlessness and immovability in doctrine.
If then as Paul says, the elders should "shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood", they should be alive to the cost and sacrifice which may be needed, and compromise as much as does an athlete, when he is seeking the world record. Here, however, what one seeks to have recorded, is this, that this world's records are precisely, being evil, what one avoids, and Christ's call, what one fulfils with faithfulness, and not savvy, spiritual grace and not carnal place.
4 THE RIGOUR, THE REALITY AND THE JOY
These hands, says Paul, "have provided for my necessities and for those who were with me" (Acts 20:34), this an example of the principle,
"You must support the weak!"
Indeed, there is a further principle, this:
"It is more blessed to give than to receive."
Then they all "wept freely" for there was one who lived much as he spoke, spoke much as he was commanded, went where he was sent, looked after them like a nurse (cf. I Thessalonians 2:7) and had them in his heart (Philippians 1:7). They went with him to the ship, as seeing off till the end of the Age, the apostle whose words would remain in abundance, to the extent of some 13 epistles, till Christ should Himself return.
Off he went to known tribulations and bonds, filled with the love of God, abiding in the presence of the Lord who had shone upon him, led him in the way from the time sent (Acts 13) and on through his pilgrimage (cf. Acts 16:6-9, 18:9). Notice how at an earlier time, they were FORBIDDEN by the Spirit of God to go to Bithynia, but then given a vision for Macedonia! So in various ways, did the Lord guide him.
HOWEVER He guides any one of us, three things are clear. We need first by repentance and faith in the finished work of Christ, His present power through the resurrection of His body authenticating Him (Romans 1:4, 3:23-27, I Cor. 15:1-4), as likewise rest in His redemption and clear expectation of His return (Acts 1:7ff., Revelation 22, Psalm 37), to be operative Christians. Next, we need to follow His written word (Matthew 4:4) and test all things (I Thessalonians 5:21), bear all things and avoid the wolves and those who are devoured with curiosity concerning them.
May the good Lord give grace to all of His people, so to live, and let us be thankful for the example of Paul, and not deviate from the apostolic testimony, itself authorised by the Lord (II Peter 3:16), with the rest of the scriptures.
How simple it all is, when we are delivered from falling through weakness into this or that sin which so easily besets us (Hebrews 12:1); and how delightfully challenging to wait on Him with equal faith and relish, knowing that to serve the Lord's Christ is inestimable privilege.
“Therefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a
cloud of witnesses,
let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us,
and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
looking to Jesus the author and finisher of our faith;
who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross,
despising the shame,
and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
Major and minor movements alike have not only come from frankly foreign influences, as in the case of Muhammad (though he took some of the Old Testament furnishings and endorsed them cf. SMR pp. 1080ff., Going with God ... Chs. 3 and 4), but from within the Church. This is precisely the age-old phenomenon of false prophets, so exposed by Jeremiah, as in Ch. 23, and Ezekiel as in Ch. 14. They often despise the authority which God has given through His word (cf. Numbers 16), and sometimes simply contradict or add to it cleverly, or disastrously, but always falsely (Numbers 22, Jude 11, II Peter 2:15ff.).
Paul specifies some of the results of such a spirit (I Timothy 4, II Timothy 3-4), and Jude and II Peter characterise those involved. The final false prophet is the epitome of satanic self-service in the interests of what is not God! (cf. Revelation 16:13-14, 19:15-20, where the end of the rule of that misleader is by the word of God, direct and with power from Christ).
The test is the word of God (Romans 16:17), and fellowship is limited to what receives it (cf. John 17:3-8), while power for service comes in conjunction with them (cf. John 15:7).
In addition to p. 99, as indicated in the text, in SMR, Ch. 4 of Going with God shows how Christ has been ludicrously misinterpreted by some, concerning Peter, for if such arrogant assertions were true of the papacy, then tracts of the Bible would need to be eliminated, including words of Christ, who knows His own position, even if the papacy does not.
Christ implicitly refers to Himself as this same Lord in Matthew 21:44 when He declares that "whoever falls on this stone, will be broken, but on whomever it falls, it will grind him to powder." The stone in view here ? It is perfectly clear in the situation there described. Christ had challenged those disbelieving in Him with a quotation from Psalm 118:22-23, concerning the stone which the builders rejected. It was for all that, to become the headstone of the corner (cf. a parallel parable in Mark 12). The context was entirely personal centred on the Messiah Himself.
This of course, as with all the Bible says, happened! He did indeed break every contrary opinion, and even His death through the power of evil, was as forecast with sublime wisdom as in Isaiah 49-55, Zechariah 12, Psalm 16,22, as one using the evil of man to secure the outcome in terms of that sublime grace and love of God, which He had desired. THAT, it is the work of deity only! Thus were the actions of the only, the correct, the date-fixed Messiah whose works covered the astounding prophecies for Him, and whose actions displayed the power of God without interception.
Interestingly, the Greek for the translation 'stone' here in Matthew 21:44 is liqos, a term used for BUILDING STONES. Thus in the context, Christ is referring to Himself as the HEADSTONE of the corner, so selecting this term, just as in the annunciation of Matthew 16, He selected Peter's personal name, stone, petros, in the play on different related words, for contrast with the petra which referred to the question already in hand, that is HIS OWN IDENTITY. Petra refers rather to a living mass of rock, Christ as foundation as in I Corinthians 3:11.
The challenge to the object of faith brought forth from Peter, through the stated intervention of the Father's inspiration of that apostle on that occasion (Matthew 16:13-19), the correct designation for Christ: that is, the Son of the Living God. On that correct, spiritually discerned assertion the Church would be built, Christ indicated, that is, on Christ AS the Son of the Living God, seen by faith and so received as illustrated by Peter. As I John shows continuously, this is the case.
It was more than an interesting historical additive, than the eminence that some would like to attach to Peter as if Matthew 23:8-10 and I Peter 5 had never been written, was at once exposed as nonsense when Peter at once being perhaps for a moment carried away, as some have been for centuries, counselled the Christ of the Cross to omit the death part! So was His contribution at once negated in terms of anything beyond administrative and personal reliability in general, for the Gospel would be gone if Peter as 'his eminence' had had his way! Instead, GET BEHIND ME SATAN, came the divine rebuke for you do not savour the things of God, but those of men!
Nothing could be further from Christ's insistence that HE ONLY was Lord and Teacher, and ALL the rest were brethren, than this anti-scriptural assertiveness for one 'brother', who is no brother at all when he makes himself a lord in the earth, when there is no difficulty about the arithmetic in the Bible: of Lord for the spiritual life, of father for the life of the soul, there is one: it is in the trinity, Father and Son, and the Spirit of God applies and activates within us who believe. This trend, then is over a millenium old; but now it is to be displaced by one more in keeping with the spirit of the Age (Revelation 16), pointing NOT to himself, but to the Beast, that aggregate of power for which the new authority will be gifted with an accomplice in the field of religion (II Thess. 2, Revelation 17:13-17). The Roman imposition by then is past, as the verses just cited show, but its message is growing yet stronger, for another imposter (cf. SMR pp. 946ff.).
See Ch. 2 above, *1.
See on Rosenberg, Ancient Words, Modern Deeds Ch. 14.
See A Question of Gifts.
See Romans 16:17, II John, Isaiah 8:20. It is enough to slander someone by crediting him with words he did not speak, or affirmations he did not make, or negations he avoided. When you do this to the words of GOD, then you have escalated from pea-shooters to atomic bombs, in parallel.
On Separation of those professing Christ, the straying from the seeking, see:
The Defining Drama Ch. 4;
Keys ... Ch. 3,
Dizzy Dashes, Heady Clashes and the Brilliant Harmony of Inevitable Truth Ch. 6 ; and Message of the Words of God to Man in the World Ch. 3;
Hallowed Be Thy Name Ch. 9, Ch. 3,
Going with God ... Ch. 1, Separation
A citation from The Meaning of Liberty and the Message of Remedy, Ch. 9, gives detail on this aspect.
We referred earlier to Communism in terms of false religion, one contrasting with this vignette of victories in Revelation 14. The work of Lester de Koster, Communism and Christian Faith, handles this well. In this sort of vein, we see that the proletariat or commoners, are the place-fillers for the Messiah; the CLASS situation is the SIN; the overthrow of this is the overthrow of the DEVIL, and the dictatorship of the proletariat, is the HEAVEN. The LAW of Communism, we must add, though it does not work, has been imagined: that by which history has no choice but to follow on to produce a world communism; and while this failure is seen in this only covertly religious system, the movement towards mimicry of the actual situation under Almighty God with His law, is notable!
While this of course provides precisely the opposite of the case for the Marxist decidedly NON-paradise of decidedly RIFE repression in a decidedly NON-liberated situation, just as do the ways in which it comes fail to meet the case (as in SMR pp. 925-926), yet the direction of thought is clear. GOD is to be displaced, preferably with a sort of mimicry of style, at last, which however futilely, is designed to hold some semblance of conceivability. Such is the path of delusion, a little spice in a sordid mass. Indeed, it is decidedly humiliating to be told thousands of years in advance the very character and unviability of your so intelligent schemings!
But let us proceed with the spiritual parallel which Communism provides, to Christianity.
The SACRIFICE is of the kulaks is then to be considered, that is, of the land holders who were given Siberia for payment, and prison or labour camp as receipt; though this is not strictly in the bookish version, only in that of history. The power to propel matter into man, man into politics, politics into a classless society (except for the rulers of course), and this into heaven, this law in what has to be a ludicrously lawless chaos (cf. SMR pp. 284-315C), is merely one of the side-shows to the Communist fair, this covertly religious atheism, which draws many to its execution squads, not all willingly. Without any possible access to truth, since no absolute (ostensibly) is permitted, Communist tells it anyway, and it does not happen that way, anyway.
Yet it TELLS Falun Gong as if a LORD, what to do, and where to die in many cases, by report. So you have the sense of LORD in their system too! This 'lord', he kills; the Lord of truth, brings life. They are antithetical, like heaven and hell, like verification and falsification, like God and the devil; and their source is antithetical, truth and lie, and their results are antithetical, liberty and bondage. As to the latter, it can be extended, if you want to press the image, into the lingering prisons of 're-education' and the resourceful endeavours so well exhibited by Arthur Koestler in his Darkness at Noon, and by Solzhenitsyn in his Gulag Archipelago, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovitch, and First Circle. This becomes their version of hell.
In one sense, then, Communism too is a perversion of Christianity, using its categories and abandoning its logic in irrational insistences made to history, which does not, simply does not hear! It is a reductionism applied to Christianity, a removal of the substance in the interests of a poor, depleted and denuded caricature of it. Its smuggled in god, a mimicry who is quite inept, cannot do what the real One does; and so it fails to function. What does not exist cannot do anything; and miracles would be needed to make communism work, its laws operate and its thoughts cohere.
See SMR pp. 1175 for the background to this. See on results and comparisons at the racial level:
It Bubbles ... Ch. 10, Outrageous Outrages ... Ch. 11. Red Alert Ch. 10.
See Message ... Ch. 4, History, Review and Overview ... Ch. 5, and 'genes' in index.
See Bible Translation 2, No. 10.
On this, see such chapters as:
Man in Retrospect, in Prospect and in Bold Relief Ch. 2,
Beauty of Holiness Ch. 8,
Message ... Ch. 2.
In particular, see Alex Williams' on progressive genetic damage, in Journal of Creation, Volume 22 (2), 2008, pp. 60-66. This is a careful discussion of the anti-creation thrust, that is the deterioration, which drives mankind towards extinction, and this by mutation, which though carefully inhibited by marvellous devices, does occur, and does so progressively. While the trend is not fast, deteriorations are very numerous, and the direction is sure.
It is a type of retrogressive progression, or a time-oriented advance towards un-creation, the peril of all designs over time, since the input information is in danger in this world, as currently constituted, of the effects of that negative law which concerns information: it goes down, not up, without the operation of intelligence. That is the empirical fact, and the Second Law of Thermodynamics is not beholden to any adverse evidence on the topic. That, it is why it is a law.
In Creation, March-May 2007, under the title Electric DNA, Dr Jonathan Sarfati shows on the positive side of creation, another attribute: that of finesse in elegance in conceptually controlled co-ordination of fields of force and construction. Thus there is a method, inherent in the construction of DNA and its attendant workers, which confines interference by electron ‘stealing’, that the results of the attachment of an electron out of the DNA to another chemical. By placing in pairs, the ‘letters’ A and T (the bases adenine and thymine), you get ‘insulators’. These tend to block the electric ‘current’ which comes from successive loss of the electron in a series, as the first hole is filled. He adds that more recently it has been found that the letter ‘G’ (the base guanine) can be and often is used in strings, and in this format, it is found acpable of readily absorbing an electron ‘hole’, so deflecting what could have been ramifying damage to the DNA. He likens it to the principle of galvanized iron.
Moving to the topic repair of DNA, he points out that the equipment for this is elaborate. There are some 3 billions ‘letters’ of data in every cell, so the task of FINDING and FIXING is immense. What svelte, efficient, hand-crafted if you will, slickly sophisticated medium, if you will not, is used for so prodigious a task with such enormities of possible consequences in equipment of so complex and vital a character for such a task ? Using the principle that unbroken DNA conducts current, whereas an error blocks this, he notes the finding of Dr Barton that there are repair ENZYMES to do the work. A pair of these chemicals lock onto two sections of a DNA strand. One sends the voyaging electron down the strand; the other awaits the result. If the DNA has no break, the second, receptor enzyme is caused to detach, receiving the electron. If there is no break, no electron comes to this enzyme in waiting. Amazingly, this enzyme then moves along the now exposed strand (something fishy here …), and does so UNTIL it reaches the error; then in general principle, it fixes it.
Consider the enormity of this. It is so easy in science, to speak of thing happening, as if the empirical were its own rationality; but each happening needs a cause.
The ‘pair’ of enzymes have to be of the same sort; they have first to assemble at each end of a strand; one has to send, while the other waits; the receptor has to detach or not, and if not, move. When it moves there is a direction, along the strand, and a point of impact, the error, and a point for the impact, its correction. ALL such things require EITHER instructions or chemical properties constraining, or both. In the latter case, the underlying DNA instructions have less to do; in the end, whether the matter be from that source, or inherent, the information required is the same, only specified in different regards. The enormity of such brilliance of svelte sophistication, elegance of miniaturization, economy of utilization are all contrary to unordered events in a material setting where objects simply display their characteristics of being. This is as in so much that we see and do, a case of ordered direction with economy of effort, maximal knowledge, choice of elegance for an overall purpose.
Where this is missing, so is this type of unitarily organised result of unitary language in a consistent system where parts and whole, partial and total, interact with a conceptualisable plan, mode of operation and community of result, so forming a constructed analogue of the same kind as is effected by these producers: intelligence, knowledge, wisdom and purpose. The difference is that this excels theirs, in the created format called man.
Without such, such things are NEVER found. Logically, they could not be, for one is of one domain of functional provision, the source of a given result with logical cohesion and cause-effect tracery available, a basis which cannot be dismissed if the direction-dynamic, conceptualisable, concept oriented result is to come. No such result comes, unless of course there is something yet more equipped to do it, having not less but more powers. You never could and never would get grapes from thistles, or intra-systematic design from the undesigning. Configurations that match inherent properties are one thing; constructions which do not, are another. The use of any one medium with its systematic powers to construct in another requires oversight and intelligence, and implies purpose as well as thrust.
Neither empirically nor logically is there room or observable action which bypasses such necessities in KIND, for operations of a kind.
Some speak of the balance of 'nature' and try to avoid upsetting it. However, while there are at both the micro- and macro- levels enormous exhibitions of design on the earth as for man (cf. Deity and Design ...), the concept of 'balance' needs scrutiny here.
Thus equable arrangements to allow this and that to interact so that no extreme is reached can indeed occur, in these as in various sophisticated designs which man can make, more at his own level. When however a cursed earth equipped with highly sophisticated plagues and insects for them, as well as bacteria and viruses, which can be deployed to that purpose, it is best not to be overcome by simplicity. When a car is smashed, it goes ... shall we say, somewhat differently (if it does in fact still go at all).
This earth has various buffers and arrangements, and this is a sound ground to be careful before interfering with some of its provisions, such as the atmosphere; but it also has been given various buffeting, as explained above. To confuse the two is most unwise.
To allow crocodiles to parade near humans in Queensland, in view of their being protected, and to let sharks carry on when they are becoming a menace to swimmers, on the ground of balance and protection, or the inextinguishable desirability of preserving all things in force, is simplistic. Some things are entirely and others in various ways, objects of the curse. We need not sacrifice people who have not yet been smashed in our parade of inglorious wars, in this century. A little prudence, is better, say, than protecting certain viruses, which may be causing pandemics, or other vicious creatures. At least, prudence in limiting them, and no passion for their preservation at cost is in order.
Evils and trials are in this justly smitten world, and it is necessary to categorise blessings in contradistinction from those. It is wiser to remove the cause of a trial, than to accentuate it but having no concept of good and evil, and hoping to keep all things in attenance, in 'their' domains. It is, in a sense, like trying to keep bullets in their aerial domain in a war, in case any particular brand of them should die out.
In this way, we can see how man is helping to destroy himself by his presumptuous attitude to our Creator, and His word, which explains these things.
See Sects, as marked.
Little Angel Ch. 11 as marked,
Calibrating Myths ... Ch. 6,
News 122, 132,
Tender Times for Timely Truth Ch 8 (this last with emphasis on remedy);
Barbs ... 6 - 7,
Repent or Perish Chs. 2, 7
These guidances show examples of what the Lord may elect to do in method, for it is not wise to attempt to limit Him (Psalm 78:41), on the one hand, or to insist on one's own idea of HOW He will guide on the other. ALL must be vetted by scripture, tested thus as in Matthew 4.
Acts 16:9 declares this:
"And a vision appeared to Paul in the night. A man of Macedonia stood and pleaded with him, saying, 'Come over to Macedonia and help us.' Paul at once sought to go, "concluding that the Lord had called us to preach the gospel to them."
Again in Acts 18:9, these words:
"Now the Lord spoke to Paul in the night by a vision, 'Do not be afraid, but speak, and do not keep silent; for I am with you, and no one will attack you to hurt you: for I have many people in this city.' "