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Displacement and Deity
The Australian October 21st., 2002
Displaced Religions may trail idly along as cultures shrug and befuddle, but God is not mocked, nor is He to be found, trudging in the rear, but directing events, now as always. His humility is to bear for love, not to suffer a devil’s hell for man, by mere inadvertence!
It was, of course, not entirely surprising. Australia seems, governmentally, to find little trouble with being a close ally of the USA in its war on terror, which in turn is misconceived as WAR on EVIL, when it fact, biblically defined, it is partly evil against evil. The denial of Christ is SO extreme a displacement from one’s nest, nestling and nature in the Creator, that John (I John ) epitomises LYING in terms of doing just this.
Ø “Who,” he asks, “is a liar, except he who denies that Jesus is the Christ ? He is antichrist who denies the Father and the Son.” Further, “Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father either; he who acknowledges the Son has the Father also.”
HENCE, in simple biblical faith (and the Bible is demonstrable truth as in SMR), you CANNOT be immersed in truth, if you are appositely designated, in spiritual terms, liar. You cannot be true, if truth is rejected as your basis. Evil cannot be defined outside the ultimate error of rejecting the definition of goodness; and truth cannot be found outside the criterion and Keeper of it, who composes it as the very word of God. Therefore, the Bush assault, war on EVIL, is misconstrued; and in due time, will miscarry. If now it had been simply a war on terrorism, fine; or if simply a war on a SPECIFIED evil, possible.
When however forces, presumably GOOD fight what is designated as EVIL, without more ado, then there can only be one result.
Either the definition is true; or it is false. If false, the war is not as claimed, and some of the participants are themselves guilty of one of the most heinous evils possible, denying the One who is Good, and duplicating Him, if it were possible, with another god, another life, another way, another code of morals, another author and another salvation, if you could call the hopeful massing of imperfect works as a ground for finding the haven of God, by such a name at all. (Cf. Highway to Hell,
this, we have given reflection, sadly enough, before. It is now the increasing
“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and
in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able
to stand against the wiles of the devil.
For we do not wrestle
against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against
the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of
wickedness in the heavenly places.
Ø Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints …”
This much is in clarification.
The Moslem menace,
¨ coming from many
¨ whose divine approach to faith is as far from this unhappy parody*1 - and indeed it abides further - as is reason:
this is not ultimately met by force. It is met by faith.
not mean that a nation, being physically threatened, may not defend itself; but
it does mean that if we are to enter into moral
and spiritual dimensions, force is not the answer. A war on terrorists,
as multiplicitous murderers is a war on crime. Many might hunt criminals,
religious or other. Those who hunt may be spiritually evil, though civically
activated. To be evil, we recall, you do not need to FEEL evil, for your
conscience may be seared as with a hot
iron, as the Bible instructs us (I
Timothy 4:2); and indeed, it is
precisely for that reason that many religionists have used force to BRAND their
religion on the minds of men, and INVADE the wills of man, as if this were
relevant to truth or faith in any way at all!
The profusion of confusion (cf. *3 below), the contusion of concepts in bruised and battered remnants, can thus be seen readily in the contemporary world seen, amidst ‘terror’. Accordingly, President Bush’s exercise in a Prayer Breakfast (Red Alert … Ch. 8), justly exposed here as contravening scripture, not to say wisdom, with other leaders, and many religious, appears an exercise in acknowledging the terror of men, rather than that of the Lord!
Of the latter, you read in Isaiah 2:10-12 (bold added):
v “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…”
Again Jeremiah , as we shall see, declares the impotence of the idolatrous inventions of man’s flesh, passing as gods, to help, and the fact that these very creations of man’s mind, who made neither heaven nor earth, will perish from before them. OF the universe, they have no standing over it, at all. Nonentities, they are vanities, to use the terminology of the Lord, worthless absurdities before the God who speaks in the Bible, in history and to the heart of man.
Truth, however, it is mercifully, filled with kindness; for that is WHO God is (cf. Exodus 33:19ff., Titus 2-3). Yet it is not deviant, does not decline, is never manipulable, is what it is, since it is the very nature and will of God with which you then are dealing: as Christ said, “I AM THE WAY, THE TRUTH AND THE LIFE” (John 14:6).
That much is in clarification and repudiation of synthetic slither, cultural wandering, taking the name of the Lord in vain with association with vanities, in terms on the one hand of reason, but categorically, of biblical Christianity, of the word of God.
Hence it is rather a spirit that is being manifested, a synthetic one, if perhaps somewhat mutedly so, compared with the works and efforts of many theologians, so-called, who try to marry everything marriageable in religion, sometimes only in one field, sometimes in all (cf. News 121, 122, Stepping Out for Christ Ch. 1, Repent or Perish Ch. 5), as if engaged in some orgy of wedding ceremonies. Alas, many of these religious marriages and wakes are DISPLACED. Like displaced persons in the individual realm, you thus find displaced religions, trying to pretend, or pretending to try to assimilate, to relate, or at any rate pretentiously proceeding to undo whatever authority they might have had, in terms of tradition, in favour of new authorities, statistically gained, compositely proportioned, like a lion-horse wedding, in which the nature of the beasts is artistically contrived to bear, each to each, some resemblance, though really the marriage is quite impossible. It is merely a contrivance.
This spirit of convenience, of convention, of contravention – in terms of the Biblical revelation, of invention of new things by specious contrivances uniting the old (like uniting 2+2=1.897 and 2+2=4, alongside 2+2=lemon juice), is one of the most effective possible ways of divorcing yourself from the goodness of the Lord, who being Himself, is not really a spout from which to find things pouring forth, when you have made the spout, AND the connections, to who knows what synthetic religiosities. It is important to realise that this is precisely what the Lord says, in His word, as found in Jeremiah 7:8-10:
“Behold, you trust in lying words that cannot profit.
v “Will you steal, murder, commit adultery, swear falsely, burn incense to Baal, and walk after other gods whom you do not know, and then come and stand before Me in this house which is called by My name, and say, ‘We are delivered to do all these abominations’? Has this house, which is called by My name, become a den of thieves in your eyes? Behold, I, even I, have seen it,” says the Lord.”
Adultery of the spiritual kind is prominent in all these things (as in Ezekiel 23, Hosea), and stealing HIS words, each one from his neighbour, is especially vehemently condemned (Jeremiah explicitly charges just this). “I am against” the prophets who do this, says the Lord, in this matter. It is enough if GOD BE FOR YOU; but it is also enough, on the negative side, if GOD BE AGAINST YOU, through your foolish and vain pretensions in ARRANGING things for Him, who alone has spoken His own word to mankind, and needs not help in the utterance! Swearing ? taking HIS name in vain, by traducing what is His, with the equipment of others, and vice versa, is not the least misuse of it.
As to Baal, it is precisely this “Lord” of the Middle Eastern nations so dominantly for so long, which now works in the children of disobedience, who take another god and another one, or a composite, or a novelty, and name him or it, the One! Vile violence and vicious evils flow like a red stream from this source, however many do not apply the words in the Koran as they might, and many do.
“Behold,” He says, “I am against the prophets … who use their tongues and say, ‘He says’!” It is a phenomenon neither new nor wise.
Is it so very surprising! The only teaching in the field of religion which is “GOOD”, to use President Bush’s reported term, is from the mouth of God, Himself the objective and only just object of worship, and source of all religion. Suffice that having something resembling the word of God in this or that feature is no more to the point than having 16 airliner wheels, its electrical system and no engines, with a different design for the wings, suffices to duplicate or expose, expound or substitute, attach to or replace a given airliner of another sort.
however, is no mere matter of SORTS of religion, but of meta-religion (cf. A
SINCE the goodness of God is not available from another, and HE is not available for reconstruction, and HIS truth is the only one, from which all else must flow or ultimately be exposed, thus the goodness of God is forfeited by this playing with the words of men, religious or otherwise; and it is like a child, nursed by a mother’s breasts, going to a dirty street fountain, and breaking its teeth. Yes, but far worse than this, is it: for the child at least is excusable in its misplaced derring-do, but man, finding the products of cracked cisterns, broken fountains, he is likely not only to bring evil on his body, his mind and his spirit, but to suffer so that he may then bring unjust cause against the ‘mother’ whom he forsook, as if his inventions were her error! (Ecclesiastes 7:29).
So do men affront God in deed and word, in action and in reaction. The results are more than reactions of ‘nature’ to misuse, of environment to exploitation, and of the souls of man to much the same, by commerce, philosophy, psychology or politics, yes or the voracities of science or religion, falsely so-called.
Such is unnecessary, unwise and provocative. It is to live as if His patience were all that was concerned, and not His justice, and truth; and to seek to play on His mercy in the very act of defiling the name He has for it, while seeking it where it is NOT to be found (Jeremiah 17:13):
“O Lord, the hope of
All who forsake You shall be ashamed.
“Those who depart from Me
Shall be written in the earth,
Because they have forsaken the Lord,
The fountain of living waters.
“Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed;
Save me, and I shall be saved,
For You are my praise.”
Not only so, but in forsaking Him who is the fountain, they invest their time in their own inventions, inadequate and disabled, because displaced, their very source different, divergent and deviant (Jeremiah -13):
v “ ‘Be astonished, O heavens, at this,
And be horribly afraid;
Be very desolate,’ says the Lord.
v “For My people have committed two evils:
v They have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters,
v And hewn themselves cisterns—broken cisterns that can hold no water.”
Further, they are ingrates in heart, flagrantly awry, as well as having idols in their hearts (Ezekiel 14:4), forgetful in oppressive personal lordliness of spirit, of the goodness of the Lord, their own Maker.
v “O generation, see the word of the LORD!
Have I been a wilderness to
Or a land of darkness ?
” Why do My people say, ‘We are lords;
We will come no more to You ’ ?”
But again, it is worse. The sheer wonder of the truth is defiled by irreconcilable division, in the guise of unity, displacement from Himself.
v “Even the stork in the heavens
Knows her appointed times;
And the turtledove, the swift, and the swallow
Observe the time of their coming.
But My people do not know the judgment of the Lord.
v “How can you say, ‘We are wise,
And the law of the Lord is with us’?
Look, the false pen of the scribe certainly works falsehood.
The wise men are ashamed,
They are dismayed and taken.
v “Behold, they have rejected the word of the Lord;
So what wisdom do they have?”
KING DAVID, when he fell temporarily into sin, had this word concerning the goodness of the Lord: “And if that had been too little, I also would have given you much more! Why have you despised the commandment of the Lord, to do evil in His sight?”
Jeremiah makes it generic: “Your iniquities have turned these things away,
And your sins have withheld good from you.”
Error against truth is trouble; error against the truth who is goodness, is desolation and loss. It is the heart of the unnatural, such as visits so many civilizations in their decline, and attacks them in their fall, such as AIDS too well attests and the blood from the Islamicists, seeking to destroy civilisations for the benefits of raw power or intimidation, overthrow or imposition, unconcerned about children, fascinated by the facets of their new mushroom, that of the little bomb that grows in the cultural gardens of man. All of this is unnatural, impotent and reckless, just as Jeremiah said of the false prophets of his own day, equally deluded, and without excuse (Jeremiah ):
¨ “Behold I am against those who prophesy false dreams, says the LORD, and tell them, and cause My people to err by their lies and by their recklessness. Yet I did not send them, or command them; therefore they shall not profit this people at all.”
Whatever form the unnatural takes, it is no isolate. Civilisation is falling apart because having had its opportunities and in particular, in great depth for two millennia, it is divorcing so from goodness, from truth, that lying in the spiritual themes becomes endemic, pandemic and pandemonium. It spreads faster than Ebola devours. Its end is sure. It approaches even now, like a tornado, heard in the distance, its course continuing (cf. Answers to Questions Ch. 5).
Such much for the clarification of the issues, and the pondering of the preliminaries.
MEANDERS TO MOSQUES
when a Minister of the Government of Australia goes to a Mosque in his official
capacity (The Australian,
It has nothing to do, strictly, with the much prized liberty of worship. It is not that. It is rather the OFFICIAL involvement at the GOVERNMENTAL level, with what denies, is divorced from and assails the whole message of Christ, of redemption, of the Cross, of the Son of God, and this without ground or even possibility of truth, as noted above, with grounds provided.
It is an offence, a diligent displacement, a lie in terms of the epistle of John’s designation. He who fears God will not freely so move in government. It is not Moslems or mosques, that this country needs for its security, but liberty for worship and care in government, to decide what is to be the authority to watch. If, however, it is to be ANYTHING, then let ANYTHING save you! The case grows more and more like that of disobedient ancient Israel, experimenting with gods that could not save, did not help, arising new from the ground, or having done so without ground for their arising, groundless and grinding down with the judgments apposite to such inventions (Psalm 99:8 cf. Deuteronomy 32:17-18):
¨ “You answered them, O LORD, our God;
You were to them God-Who-forgives,
Though You took vengeance on their inventions.”
¨ Again: “They sacrificed to demons, not to God,
To gods they did not know,
To new gods, new arrivals,
That your fathers did not fear.
Of the Rock who begot you, you are unmindful,
And have forgotten the God who fathered you.
And when the LORD say it, He spurned them …”
To be sure, we are not a theocracy; but having involvements officially with other gods is just as provocative as if we were. It is not necessary for a government to show that it does not care, en bloc, what a man does WITH ITS NAME as representative, in terms of religions, so long as people are happy. It is enough that it protects freedom of religion provided there is no violence against people’s lives or properties, of expression so long as people do not incite to such violence, and seeks to help all without fear of men, or the pursuit of favour.
THIS, sending a Minister to a Mosque, or suffering him to act as representative in such prayers, is to provoke God, quite simply. It is showing nationally, as individuals show personally, where the government stands: that is, not at all, respecting the Christian faith in terms of which, with whatever admixture of English political error (such as having the Church of England under State control in various ways), this land was founded.
You do not want to be founded in that any more ? Very well, let the issues be clear. If the nation is to cohere with the mockery of the God who is, be it intentional or otherwise, with His denial, and with the religions of force, however many of their exponents do not elect to use it: then it is asking for trouble first of all, from the God of all patience, love and grace.
We must remember this: that
Ø Mystic Multiculturalism is not Licence for Arbitrary Religiosity, and
Ø Tolerance is grace, not a substitute for truth.
As Jeremiah put it, in chapter 2:
“Saying to a tree, ‘You are my father,’
And to a stone, ‘You gave birth to me.’
(Here lies the prelude to the vanities of evolutionism, Nature worship.)
“For they have turned their back to Me, and not their face.
But in the time of their trouble
They will say, ‘Arise and save us.’ (… as at
But where are your gods that you have made for yourselves?
Let them arise,
If they can save you in the time of your trouble;
For according to the number of your cities, are your gods …”
(That parallels the grand multiculturalism in its normal outreach beyond bounds of personal tolerance and goodwill, to the idle and vain ‘authentification’ of diverse displacement from God under the name of religion. The result of NOT being delivered is moral, social, educational, intellectual and spiritual disorder.)
What can these ‘gods’ do, who do not have the ontological advantage of existence” ?
Jeremiah answers this in : “Thus you shall say to them: ‘The gods that have not made the heavens and the earth shall perish from the earth and from under these heavens.’ ”
Zephaniah 2:11 consummates the thrust:
Ø “The LORD will be awesome to them.
Ø For He will reduce to nothing all the gods of the earth;
Ø People shall worship Him.”
The time IS coming, like everything else predicted in the Bible, when with gods exhausted in their inconsequential non-existence, even their dreams trite and absurd, they pass use-by date, which should have been “NEVER”; just as, in the recent past, so many in Moscow, disillusioned and bored, were coming to see to be the case with Communism (cf. Games War of Christopher Booker -1981) before it fell, a headless idol. Vapid and vain, they touched this or that slender fibril of truth, being neither enmeshed in it, nor based on it, neither given through it nor acceptable to it, a vaunting without power and a push without truth. This they did for their little day, only to become part of the so ‘romantic’ past. When however it is the present into which they co me, in their ogreries*3, it is less so; and the dooms delivered, these are far less so.
In fact, the case is a sort of distraught horror, to personify it. It is not only the presumption; the arrogance; the misplaced daring: it is the displaced deliverance, the ruined rest and the offering of the unacceptable, as if the misled people of the land were coming under hypnotism: it is this which is so grievous to man and to nation alike. Micah brings out some of the poignancy of this:
v “Arise and depart,
v For this is not your rest.
Because it is defiled, it shall destroy,
Yes, with utter destruction.”
THIS is not your rest!
Let us be clear. It is good to have a country which does not impose its political power on its people in order to shave off the reality of liberty, and force them into an anything but divine mould. It is fine for people who are not committed to the Lord, to be able to think for themselves, and find what is the truth as they will, and may; for it is still true, that God is gracious, would have all men to be saved (I Timothy 2), and that it is the divided heart of sin which stifles prayer (Jeremiah 29:13ff.):
Ø “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. Then shall you call upon me, and go and pray to me, and I will give heed to you. And you shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart. And I will be found of you, says the LORD…”
It is good to be free to seek. If however in the exercise of this glorious liberty, man here, and woman there, child in the other place, here one, there a group, here a party and there a leaven, moves contrary to truth, and ignores the very mercy of God: then that is the erosive and disposing case, as if a car could CHOOSE not to have a mechanic. The freedom is impressive; its use is not. The result is clear.
Thus it is apologetically significant to realise that Christianity is not the issue for Australia and the USA. It is to a certain extent relevant, in that there are multiplied thousands of Christians, doubtless, in these two countries; but when the nations themselves, as nations, so proceed, so err and so press in false paths, the conclusions for these nations are becoming very different from what they once were.
The mercy of God may for the sake of the many Christians, be vast to the nations; but in the end, if a nation does not in timely fashion seek for the Lord (Acts 17:26-27), in its appointed boundaries of time, and if the people acquiesce in these foolishnesses, their history arises like an unpowered glider into the wind, ready to fall abruptly. When the question is NOT some war or other against terrorists, which may be simply extended police action, but rather that of some evil grouping of EVIL as if it were GOOD, in flamboyant derogation therefore, of CHRIST, as the truth, it is then that the days may come when a very different dawn may arise upon them.
Is it money
? or national wealth ? or high standards
of living ? or comfort ? or the joy of
competition ? the opportunity to develop talents ? Not all of these things are bad, but their PRE-EMINENCE can become deadly overnight, like a sudden ebola attack.
The national interest is not selfish; and if it should become so, it should not be so, in biblical terms. It should include safety and courage, heart and sincerity, truth and justly grounded peace; it should involve the protection of what is right, and the liberty to do good without compromise. If however it be more narrowly defined, in terms of merely advantageous economic, military and regional results, the god is far too small, is non-existent, a delusion and a duping. Of any such gods, it is time to repent; and of all that leads to such absolutely illogical relativism (cf. SMR Ch. 3), it is necessary to repent.
NEUTRALITY IS NOT A GEAR, but a GUISE
There is no hiding place in a false ‘neutrality’, merely another name in many academic circles, for the preliminary exclusion of God, and hence active warfare upon Him (cf. SMR pp. 355ff., 362ff., 375ff.). ‘Neutrality’ on the basis of reductionism is merely undeclared war, begging the question with daring innovative embellishment, the ‘lie’ in irrational action. All these things are merely preliminaries to the political default which, when soundly accomplished, brings the whole nation to the place where it has been led by the nose, with halter attached for good measure, for so long; and this, not only in secular myth factories, but in their fallen ecclesiastical counterparts, which increasingly have occupied the ‘religious’ in their idolatrous maws.
It is not just that the time of the crunch may come; it is rather that the crunching has been going on for three quarters of a century of licence in many formerly sound theological circles, which lead to pastoral ellipses, and social elipses, moral befoulings and spiritual tuberculosis, that enervating, enervated de-energised decline without glory.
As to God, it is impossible to deceive or manipulate Him. We are His product, and because gifted with delicious delicacy called freedom, however much defiled by rebelliousness and the entire litany of sin, can glory in our follies. These do not, however, for that reason, become glorious! You cannot hide from God, though your conscience be never so well controlled, and your intellect ever so well pre-occupied with money making, pride-sustenance or dignity-enduement.
We have mentioned Jeremiah, and let us hear further concerning the results of the inadmissible (23:23ff.):
“ ‘Am I a God near at hand,’ says the Lord,
And not a God afar off?
Can anyone hide himself in secret places,
So I shall not see him?’ says the Lord;
‘Do I not fill heaven and earth?’ says the Lord.
“I have heard what the prophets have said who prophesy lies in My name, saying,
‘I have dreamed, I have dreamed!’
“How long will this be in the heart of the prophets who prophesy lies? Indeed they are prophets of the deceit of their own heart, who try to make My people forget My name by their dreams …”
has not changed; only the scenario. That was ancient
It is time to be real, realistic and repentant. It is time to cease these provocations of the Lord. He ? He is not mocked. The slither to the unspiritual zenith proceeds apace, in these unifying, these synthesising, these dangerously debasing declivities. It will happen to be sure, and these are its very prominent foothills. THAT has no bearing on suffering it to do so. We have spirits, and valour is to the fore in such a time. What is the good of it, if it be not used! Will man repent ? what is the good of the opportunity, if this be not DONE! Meanwhile, the train continues on its programmed line, to the end of it. Each station comes and goes; and this is one of the set. To be personally beset by the set, however, is not a necessity. It is a choice.
*1 See SMR pp. 986ff., 977ff., 1088Dff., 809ff., for the dismal dereliction of forsaking truth for adventurism, in this religion, the misuse of force as also 50ff., 65ff., 1186Aff. at *3, and its writhings within itself, self-contradictory to the point it is mere provocation of the Lord to entertain it (cf. SMR pp. 1080ff., Barbs, Arrows and Balms Appendix III, More Marvels Ch. 4, incl. ‘The Moslem Lure’). The parody comes from the use of, departure from, appeal to and diffusion of biblical concepts, programs and promises, plans and definitions, with such aplomb that it reminds one of an artist in a dream. Precision departs; confusion arises and self-contradiction proceeds.
Though judgments alert the conscience, it must arise (Ezekiel 33:11, Luke 19:42ff.). While God alone can grant repentance (Acts ), He is not oblivious of the target, nor does He deal with a vacuum (Romans ). There is NO merit in grace from man, neither that of enlightened self-interest, nor superiority of spirit. Repentance in man is a work that God does, at His own entire discretion and sway, in the fulfillment of His stated concern for mankind (I Timothy 2, Colossians 1); but He does it with man, not a blank or a bric-a-brac.
We have ogrism, in Webster’s. This is not the same as ogrery, for which, if the term has not yet been invented, there seems a clear need. Hence it is rolled into play. Ogrism might be the quality of being ogreish, but orgerie would resemble reverie, camaraderie, and give the sense of the whole spirit of the thing, in broad terms, the very nature of this quality of distorted, displaced life.