FLIGHT FROM BABYLON

 

AND

 

 

LABOR NOT FOR THE MEAT THAT PERISHES

 

By

 

Chris Anderson

TABLE OF CONTENTS

 1.   INTRODUCTION

2.   BABYLONIANISM VERSUS THE WAY OF FAITH 

3.   SUBVERSION OF THE OLD COVENANT PEOPLE

4.   THE MINISTRY OF JESUS                                                   

5.   COMMISSIONING OF THE NEW COVENANT PEOPLE

6.   SUBVERSION OF THE NEW COVENANT PEOPLE

7.   GRADUAL RESTORATION OF THE KINGDOM GOSPEL

8.   NEW PATTERN FOR PERSECUTION  

9.   GRADUAL SALVATION FROM THE POLITICAL WORKS OF THE WORLD  

10. THE RISE OF FALSE KINGDOM TEACHING THROUGH TWO RESTORATIONS

11. WHEAT OR CHAFF: WHICH AM I? 

12. WHILE THE CHURCH SLEPT

13. THE COMING SALVATION FROM THE WORKS OF COLLECTIVE SOCIETY, AND THE CLIMAX OF HISTORY

14. BECOMING CONFORMED TO HIS IMAGE

15. "UNTO THE CHURCH IN WEST BABYLONIA WRITE"

 

          &&&&&&&&&&

 LABOUR NOT FOR THE MEAT THAT PERISHES


 

 

1.     INTRODUCTION

 

          The next and final degree of salvation by grace to be restored to the Church before earthly appearance of Christ's kingdom is salvation from the works of collective human society--specifically, human economy and social community. God's salvation has always been by grace through faith, from dead works--into a new way of life governed and empowered by the Spirit. What has been less readily perceived is that salvation has various degrees (not just one), and that salvation is accomplished after initial conversion by a process of development out of various dimensions of dead works - individually and corporately. In this article we are addressing the final degree of salvation to be obtained by the Church to make Her ready for the Lord's return.

 

     Some preliminary historical review is helpful to illustrate the degrees of salvation as God has already restored them to the Church. The first and most received phase of restored salvation occurred in the 16th century through the movement now commonly called the Reformation. Spearheaded by Martin Luther, this movement saw God restore the first and most basic degree of salvation from dead works, the "works of the devil". The believer is translated out of the kingdom of darkness1 and into the kingdom of Light through basic faith in Jesus Christ.

 

     Yet there was more to be restored. A couple of centuries later, God began implementing a further phase of His corporate salvation. Through the efforts of 18th and 19th century evangelists like John Wesley, God recovered the next degree of salvation: salvation from the "works of the flesh" through crucifying indwelling sin2 by the power of the Spirit.3 The central message of this movement was the "work of the Cross".4 At the heart of this movement was a reintroduction to the New Testament experience known as the "baptism of the Holy Spirit",5 though at that time it was not clearly understood by that phrase. Some called it a "deeper life", others "sanctification", and still others, "second blessing". A few called it the "baptism of the Holy Spirit". But however it was called, it was universally recognized by those who encountered it as a further, distinct work of God in the believer's life to give him a hitherto unknown resource for defeating the "power of canceled sin". Later, in the 20th century, this dimension of salvation was expanded to include recovery of the other supernatural gifts, manifestations, and anointings of the Holy Spirit.6  This was known as the Pentecostal Movement, and still later, the Charismatic Movement. All these Spirit manifestations were given to complement salvation from the "works of the flesh."

 

     But there yet remains for the Church one last degree of salvation to be restored, and its time is at hand. While this coming phase has been somewhat anticipated in some of God's latest activities in the Church, it has not fully come in and we yet await its arrival. We speak now of salvation from the dead works of human economy and social community - the "works of the world".7  This coming dimension of salvation is difficult to comprehend, especially in the Western world. Nevertheless, it is clearly revealed through the Scriptures. Let us turn there for a prophetic look at the remaining degree of salvation to be brought to us, culminating in our physical translation to new bodies and the visible return of our Lord Jesus Christ to establish His manifest kingdom on earth.

 

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References:

1 Eph 2:2  Col 1:13  

2 Rom 7  

3 Rom 8:1-17  

4 Gal 5:24; 6:14   

5 Acts 2  

6 Rom 12  I Cor 12 and 14  

7 Gal 1:4  I Jn 5:4


 

2. BABYLONIANISM VERSUS THE WAY OF FAITH

 

 

The Concept of Babylonianism

 

          The theme of this article is salvation by grace from the works of human economy and social community. Prophetically, the term applied to this system in Scripture is "Babylon":

 

     "`Fallen, fallen is Babylon the great, she who has made all the nations drink of the wine of the passion of her  immorality.'

     "And the great city was split into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell. And Babylon the great was remembered before God, to give her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of His wrath.

     "And a strong angel took up a stone like a great millstone and threw it into the sea, saying, `Thus will Babylon, the great city, be thrown down with violence, and will not be found any longer.'"1                                                  

Rev.14:8; 16:19; 18:21

 

     To found our understanding of what "Babylon" truly means, we turn to Genesis 11 where we find the first mention of this city and its famous tower, the "Tower of Babel":

 

     Now the whole earth used the same language and the same words. And it came about as they journeyed east, that they found a plain in the land of Shinar and settled there. And they said to one another, "Come, let us make bricks and burn them thoroughly." And they used brick for stone, and they used tar for mortar. And they said, "Come, let us build for ourselves a city, and - a tower whose top will reach into heaven, and let us make for ourselves a name; lest we be scattered abroad over the face of the whole earth." And the Lord came down to see the city and the tower which the sons of men had built. And the Lord said, "Behold, they are one people,
and they all have the same language. And this is what they began to do, and now nothing which they purpose to do will be impossible for them. Come, let Us go down and there confuse their language, that they may not understand one another's speech." So the Lord scattered them abroad from there over the face of the whole earth; and they stopped building the city. Therefore its name was called Babel, because there the Lord confused the language of the whole earth; and from there the Lord scattered them abroad over the face of the whole earth.

     [Now Cush became the father of Nimrod... And the beginning of his kingdom was Babylon and Erech and Accad and Calneh, in the land of Shinar. From that land he went forth into Assyria, and built Nineveh and Rehoboth-Ir and Calah, and Resen between Nineveh and Calah; that is the great city.]           Gen.11:1-9; [10:8,10-12]

 

     Prior to the establishment of Babylon and its tower, human society was loosely knit and extremely mobile. Life was fairly "nomadic", ie, people did not become settled for very long periods of time and conglomerate into large, fixed centres of population. But at Babylon, the intent of man took a decided turn. Under the leadership of Nimrod, the people of earth decided to establish just such a center. It was to be a new system of society organized under a human ruler and secured with buildings constructed of permanent elements (brick and mortar). Its landmark was to be a tower that would "reach into heaven".

 

     The idea of building a city was new to these people. They were all descendants of Noah within the third and fourth generation, which means they had been born after the Flood. They did not know what cities were. From whence then came the idea to build a city and why was God so opposed?

 

     The clue that answers these questions is found in the words of the people: "Let us build for ourselves a city, and a tower whose top will reach into heaven, and let us make for ourselves a name." According to the prophecy of Isaiah, these words mirror the words of satan himself, the arch-enemy of God:

     "I will scale the heavens; I will elevate my throne above the stars of God. I will sit on the mount of assembly, far away in the north. I will rise above the heights of the clouds; I will rival the Most High."                               

Isa. 14:13-14

 

     The parallel spirit between these passages shows us that satan was the inspirer of the new idea to build a stationary city. This also reveals therefore why the city was built. We already know that from the beginning, satan's goal was to overthrow God and rule the universe. The focus of this struggle has been the control of earth through the allegiance of mankind to whom God gave its dominion. Since satan inspired the idea to build this city, and since his goal is universal control through securing the allegiance of all mankind, we see therefore that the gathering together of mankind into stationary collective societies through the building of cities is satan's means for accomplishing his end of world rule. In gathering man together, his objective has been to rule him through possessing human leaders. This is conclusively revealed to us in Isaiah's prophecy where satan is interchangeably identified with the king of Babylon.2

 

     Now we can see why God was so opposed to what the people did under Nimrod. This gathering and settling was not just an innocent switch in lifestyle. It was the first post-Flood manifestation of spiritual war3 in the heavenlies for control of earth through the collectivization4 of man. God's will was for man to remain mobile over the earth. When man conglomerates into settled organization, his thoughts turn to self-exaltation and rebellion which service the satanic quest. Therefore God viewed the people's action as rebellious. Retaliation was swift. Because of the ramifications building this first city would have, and to permanently impede those ramifications in history, God scattered the people through confusing their language. This activated a pattern of judgment ordained upon all human attempts to become collectivized.

 

     Despite God's pre-emptive strike against this first incident of collective rebellion, the struggle was still in force. The war had only just begun. Under Nimrod as first earth-king, Babylon went on to become the first fixed human society among many more to come. It achieved ultimate status as "empire", ie, the embracing of a region under control of a network of fixed population centres ("cities").5  From that time forward, the story of spiritual war has been told through the rise and fall of empires over the goal of  complete collectivization of man into one global community under a single satan-possessed monarch. We are told by the prophets that satan's quest will ultimately fail. At the end, all of the cities of the nations will fall.6 Afterward, man will rise no more to " fill the face of the earth with cities" (Isa. 14:21).7

    

     Because of its precedent-setting position, "Babylon" becomes for all time the name in Scripture that identifies the concept of satanic control through the gathering of people into immobile concentrations of population cemented by systems of economy and social community. To God, every human city is named "Babylon" and its  permanent  buildings a  symbol of its rebellion - the bricks typify the people, the mortar typifies the slavish works of fixed society that bind them together. These systems of human economy and social community are the "works of the world". They are the last works from which we, the Church, await our salvation, and it is our salvation from these works which is the theme of this article.

 

Abraham and the Way of Faith

     Scattering the people at Babel was only a stop-gap measure for dealing with the blight of babylonianism. Within two to three centuries of Babylon's founding, God initiated a new strategy for overcoming satan's quest for world dominion through collectivization. He chose to begin a new line of descendants through the man Abraham.8 This new line of descendants was to be noted for their walk by faith9 with the Unseen Eternal God, contrary to the ways of mankind-at-large who now held the upper hand in rebellion. This new line was to be a people who would live in direct opposition to the force of babylonianism wherever they encountered it.

 

     When Abraham was called by God, he was dwelling in Ur-of-the-Chaldees.10  Ur was a city, ie, one of the manifest centres for the rebellion. Not only was it a city, it was a city belonging to the original site of collective rebellion - Babylon. This is highly significant. Precedenting another pattern, God reached into the very heart and center of world babylonianism to initiate his plan to save a people who would one day bring about the destruction of babylonianism and possess the earth for Him.

 

     For Abraham, the first step of salvation and obedience was that he leave Babylon and return to a life of mobility.11 This did not just happen to be a first requirement laid upon Abraham to test his faith in an invisible God. It was an absolutely fundamental requirement because, as an act of spiritual war, it undermined the foundational principles on which babylonian society was laid and which had become accepted as the norm after so many decades. Abraham's action challenged the validity of babylonianism without lifting a sword. It set a new standard for righteousness in the earth. It also established that true faith is not just a declaration, but manifest action that openly confronts the world system and its drive for collectivization.12 The way of faith was to be the way of salvation and a way of perpetual conflict until that salvation was complete.

 

     God's call to leave Babylon set the pattern for salvation for all who were to follow in Abraham's steps. From Abraham on, God's People  in the earth were to be marked by an openly different lifestyle of relative mobility. Whereas the babylonian cities were secured by their permanent buildings and towers, God's People  were to become noted as tent-dwellers (making tents to become symbolic of the way of faith for all time). They were to be free from attachment to the works of human economy and social community rooted in collective centres of population. They were to be identified as the "called-out" people.13  The call to leave Babylon is found to the very end of the Scriptures.14    This is the way of faith. As a life of mobility and unattachment to collective society, it is found to describe the completely faithful in the book of Hebrews:

    

     "(Men of whom the world was not worthy), wandering in deserts and mountains and caves and holes in the ground.

     "For here we do not have a lasting city, but we are seeking the city which is to come.                              

          "By faith Abraham, when he was called, obeyed by going out to a place which he was to receive for an inheritance; and he went out, not knowing where he was going. By faith he lived as an alien in the land of promise, as in a foreign land, dwelling in tents with Isaac and Jacob, fellow heirs of the same promise; for he was looking for a city which has foundations, whose architect and builder is God."                   

Heb 11:38; 13:14; 11:8-10

 

     These historical observations of Babylon and Abraham set the tone for us. What we are establishing is that since the Great Flood:

     1. The chief manifestation of rebellion in earth is  stationary, collective  human economy and social community (the "works of the world").

      2. The chief manifestation of the way of faith is a lifestyle of relative mobility free from works of organized human society.

 

Salvation by grace through faith has always included salvation from the works of organized human society--conomically and socially. From the very beginning, the kingdom of darkness and the kingdom of God are distinguished by different lifestyles relative to these works. We are saying that no salvation of God is complete until this fundamental alteration of lifestyle from immobility to mobility takes place in the believer's life and in the world-wide body of Christ. Salvation from dead works must include salvation from "Babylon."

 

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References:

1 also Is 21:9  Jer 51:44,48-49  

2 Is 14:1 > 13-14  

3 Gen 3:15 > (Eph 6:12  Dan 1O:13,2O  Lk 1O:18  Rev 12:7-9)  

4 (Zec 5:5-11)

5 Gen 10:10-12  

6 Rev 16:19 > Is 30:27-28  Ob 16   Hag 2:6,21-22

7 also Jer 51:48   Mic 5:14  

8 Gen 12:1-3; 15:5-6; 17:1-8; 22:15-18    

9 Rom 9:4     

1O Gen 15:7    

11 Gen 12:1  Heb 11:8

12 Jms 2:10-24                 

13 Heb 11:8 > Mt 16:18 "church"=[Gk]"ekklesia"= "called-out") > Rev 5:9 (KJV) 

14 Is 6:1-2; 48:20; 52:12; Jer 50:8; 51:6,9,45;   Zec 2:6-7 > Rev 18:4

 


 

3. SUBVERSION OF THE OLD COVENANT PEOPLE

 

 

     Shortly we will consider the ministry of Jesus and demonstrate that His salvation included salvation from the works of human collective society. We cannot appreciate this however until we first consider what happened to the original line of Abraham's descendants. We must see what happens when the  "called-out" People of God fail to maintain the righteousness of faith evidenced by a mobile life outside control of the systems of organized population. This will place our understanding of Jesus into right perspective.

 

     We know that God had promised Abraham's physical descendants a land they could inhabit all to themselves. But God never intended them to build an empire on it after the fashion of the surrounding nations from which they had been called-out. He never intended them to develop a fixed political, economic, and social system rooted in huge centres of immobile population. The chief figure in such a society is called a "king". We specifically know that God did not want Israel to have a human king, nor therefore the babylonian type of society over which such a king presides. Israel had already experienced slavery to such an empire for 43O years in Egypt.1 It was hoped by God that such slavery would have washed out all inclination in His People to become like such a nation.2 When we come to the time of Samuel however, we find the subversive spirit of babylonianism prevail in the hearts of the people concerning the matter of a king:

 

    Then all the elders of Israel gathered together and came to Samuel at Ramah; and they said to him, "Behold, you have grown old, and your sons do not walk in your ways. Now appoint a king for us to judge us like all the nations." But the thing was displeasing in the sight of Samuel when they said, "Give us a king to judge us." And Samuel prayed to the Lord. And the Lord said to Samuel, "Listen to the voice of the people in regard to all that they say to you, for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected me from being king over them. Like all the deeds which they have done since the day that I brought  them from Egypt even to this day - in that they have forsaken Me and served other Gods - so they are doing to you also. Now then, listen to their voice; however, you shall solemnly warn them and tell them of the procedure of the king that shall reign over them." I Sam. 8:4-9

 

     So God accommodated the people in their rebellion and gave them a king, warning them of the slavery that lay ahead for them. In time, a capital city was founded like the other nations had, and the entire nation converted over to a babylonian-style society. The capital city was named Jerusalem. In God's eyes, however, it carried the names "Sodom and Egypt" after the spirits of babylonianism that founded those cities.3 From its founding the city was an offense to Him.4

 

      Eventually, Israel achieved the coveted status of "empire" like her predecessors - Babylon, Assyria, Egypt.5 Despite a fleeting moment of "glory" under David and Solomon, Israel's adoption of an immobile political, economic, and social order paved the way for her eventual destruction as a nation.6 By becoming "like the nations", she sealed her already rampant inward alienation from God and subjected herself to the same fate ordained for all nations. From Solomon forward, the story of Israel is a story of societal decay, decline, and destruction.

 

     Under Israel, seed spiritual forces were unleashed that were to characterize God's dealings with His People in succeeding ages. This made Israel to become a type and pattern for future generations of God's People.7 (This continuity of spiritual forces explains why there are dual and even multiple applications and fulfillments of prophecy in different ages.) Through Israel's reversion to babylonianism, five particular precedents were set which activated patterns to be repeated throughout all subsequent history of God's People and the struggle for world dominion:

 

     1. Israel's reversion to babylonianism was unique because, unlike all other people, she had specially been called-out to be a testimony against babylonianism in the earth. This peculiar display of unfaithfulness to the God who called her out of Babylon gives rise to the scriptural picture of spiritual harlotry. From this time forward, the picture of spiritual harlotry is used to describe the People of God in any age who "fornicate" and "commit adultery" by reverting back to babylonian life.8  Beginning with the Old Testament prophets, this portrayal culminates in John's Revelation with a harlot seated on the beast of world babylonianism. To her is ascribed the name: "Babylon the Great, The Mother of Harlots, And of the Abominations of the Earth" (Rev. 17:5).

 

     2. Israel's ultimate dispersion, captivity, and destruction was accomplished by the very nations she copied - in particular, the first two empires developed after the Flood - Babylon and Assyria.9 The very babylonianism she emulated destroyed her. From this time forward, whenever God's People leave the way of faith to return to babylonian life, He has ordained their judgment by the society they have emulated. The warning of this begins with the Old Testament prophets10  and culminates in the picture in Revelation when the harlot is destroyed by the beast on which she rides (Rev 17:16).

 

     3. Throughout Israel's history, God raised up prophets from the midst of His own adulterous people to expose their spiritual harlotry, warn them of the consequences, and give them opportunity to repent before God destroyed them by that society with which they were fornicating.11  In turn, Israel persecuted and destroyed these prophets.12  From that time, whenever God's People  go astray, he has raised up prophets from their midst to correct them and the People destroy them. This pattern begins in the Old Testament, continues in the New Testament,13 and culminates at history's end in the martyrdom of the (company of) Two Witnesses (Rev. 11: 7-10).14

 

          4. Israel serviced her reversion to babylonianism through false kingdom teaching. The thrust of this teaching was to redefine her purpose as the called-out People in terms of babylonianism, enabling her to justify her reversion. By redefining the terms of her calling, Israel was able to live like the babylonians but still consider herself true to the way of faith. The chief spokesmen for this teaching were identified by God as false prophets. Based on false kingdom teaching, these men led Israel to worship at pagan altars in the Lord's name. They also assured Israel's evil kings that God was with them in their wars for babylonian supremacy over their neighbours.15 Most notably, these men also spearheaded the opposition and persecution of God's true prophets. From this time forward, whenever God's People revert to babylonianism, it is serviced with some form of false kingdom teaching which redefines their mission and God's  kingdom in terms of some human collective society surrounding them. This teaching forms their justification for cohabiting with babylonian society and their basis for destroying God's true witnesses. Described in the New Testament as "antichrist",16  the pattern of this teaching culminates in Revelation with the picture of a beast having a lamb's horns and a dragon's voice. This beast leads mankind to worship the image of world babylonianism in the name of the kingdom of God (Rev. 13:11-14). The catchword of false kingdom teaching is "peace and safety"17  as promised through some form of collective society.

 

     5. In keeping with her reversion back to fixed collective society, Israel replaced her tents with brick and mortar structures for securing her society. The symbol of faith was supplanted by the symbols of collectivization. More importantly however, Israel's central place of worship was changed from a tent to a stone temple. There are significant contrasts for note here. God had personally ordained the construction of a tent for His dwelling.18  But it was Israel's human king (David) who initiated the idea for a permanent temple.19 Solomon, its builder, had been a worshipper at the forbidden "high places" before its construction.20  Moreover, he built it under the shadow of a treaty with the babylonian empire at Egypt and his marriage to Pharaoh's daughter (for whose god he also eventually built a temple).21  These connections introduced an element of false worship in the temple from the beginning. While God accommodated the construction of such a building by permission, it was not in harmony with His true desire.22 As an accommodation, God allowed it to serve as a type of His true temple in heaven.23  The point for note here is that, from this time forward, whenever the called-out People of God have reverted to babylonian society, they have moved to erect permanent structures of worship and abandoned mobility-oriented worship. In time, the permanent structures become the centres for the promoting of false kingdom teaching and the symbols of hardness of heart24 - subject to eventual destruction with the downfall of the harlot society they service.25

 

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References:

1 Gen 15:13   (Gal 3:17)  

2 Ezk 20:5-38  Mic 6:4-5  Ac 7:39    

3 Is 1:10  Jer 23:14   Am 4:11 > Rev 11:8         

4 Jer 32:31-32       

5 I Ki 4:21  

6 Jer 2:14-19  Am 9:7-8 > Hos 13:9-11 

7 I Cor 10:1-11 > Heb 3:7 - 4:11  

8 Is 1:21-23; 57:1-13   Jer 2:20 - 3:20; 4:30; 13:26-27  Ezk 6:9; 16:1-58; 23:1-49; 43:6-9  Hos 1:2; 2:2-12; 3:1 - 5:3; 6:10; 9:1; Mic 1:7 > Jms 4:4    

9 II Ki 17, 24 and 25    

10 Is 10:5-6,24; 14:3; 42:22-25; 43:25-28; 51:17-20; 54:7-8; 57:16-18; 64:9-12  Jer 4:5-7,29; 5:15-17; 6:22-26; 10:22; 13:21; 15:14; 2O:4-6; 21:3-10; 22:25-30; 25:8-11; 27:6 -29:32; 32:3-5,24-36; 33:5; 34:1-7,17-22; 39:1-14; 44:24-30; 52:4-34  Ezk 5:5 - 6:7 Hos 7:16; 8:13; 9:3-7; 10:9-11; 11:5-7; Am 6:14; Hab 1:5-11    

11 II Chron 24:19  

12 II Chron 36:16      

13 Mt 23:29-39; Acts 7:51-60  

14 (Is 8:2  Zec 4:11-14)  

15 I Ki 18 and 22  Jer 28  

16 Mt 24:23-25 > I Jn 2:18-19      

17 Jer 6:14; 8:11; 14:13-16  Ezk 13:19-16  Am 9:10 > I Thess 5:3  

18 Ex 25:1-8    

19 II Sam 7:1  

2O I Ki 3:2-4  

21 I Ki 3:1; 11:1-8     

22 IISam 7:5-7 >13      

23 (Is 6:1-4; Ezk 40 - 44; 46:1 - 47:12 > Rev 21 - 22  

24 Jer 7:4-15  (Mic 3:11)  Mt 21:12-13  

25 Is 64:11  Jer 7:14; 26:9; 52:13,17  Ezk 7:24; 13:13-14  Hos 10:2 Am 7:9 > Mt 24:2


 

4. THE MINISTRY OF JESUS

 

 

Now that we have seen what happened to the original line of Abraham's descendants, we are ready to appreciate the significance of Jesus' ministry and a much more complete understanding of the scope of His mission. Let us have then the immediate context at hand -

 

     The time is approximately 4 B.C. The unseen war for control of earth through the collectivizing of man still rages. To date, the drive for collectivization has pushed on to encompass much of Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East under the headship of Roman Imperialism. Meanwhile, the nation of God's called-out people lies in abysmal slavery under the crushing foot of this empire. Israel has failed.

 

 

The Missing Ingredient

 

     The essential nature of the struggle with babylonianism was spiritual - not physical or material. The manifesting of empires and armies was motivated and energized by satanic spiritual force.1  Therefore, to overcome them and live by faith outside the works of collective society required more than sheer human determination. God's People  required an inner spiritual LIFE- force that was equal to and could supersede the force behind the works of man's societies. For lack of such a power Israel failed her calling. She had been no match for the power of Nimrod.

 

     The mission of Jesus Christ was to bring this very LIFE and to plant it within His People. Once rooted within them, His LIFE would enable them to fulfil their true calling and eventually bring about the end of babylonianism. But how was this LIFE to be procured for His People and what was to be the means of planting it into them?

 

     According to God's wisdom, the only way His LIFE could be procured was through the death of God Himself. Jesus Christ was the Son of God. He was God. It was His own LIFE which He came to make available to His People. The only way it could be procured was by His own death. Therefore, the ultimate goal of Jesus' coming was to die. By the breaking of His own body like an alabaster box, His LIFE could pour out as ointment and become accessible to His chosen People for their salvation and empowerment.2

 

     But once procured, how was this LIFE to be planted into His People? How was it to become activated? Ah! The strategy for this was ingenious. The means God ordained for planting His LIFE into His people was through their hearing of the message which described how that LIFE had been procured! The message that described how Jesus procured LIFE for His People by His death CARRIED WITHIN IT THE VERY LIFE IT DESCRIBED. The power of the LIFE of God travelled on the wings of the words that described it as pollen in the air. All that was necessary was for the message to be received by the "flowers" who heard it and the hidden LIFE within the message would take root like a seed in their hearts. To think that by the unassuming ordinariness of spoken words the LIFE capable of overthrowing all world babylonianism could be planted in the People of God. The plan was so simple as to be deemed foolish.3  Therein lay its genius.

 

     Thus the message of Jesus became the key to the new strategy of God in the earth for empowering His people. Before His own death, Jesus preached His kingdom message of salvation. As He did so, His own LIFE was released through His words. In Him was LIFE and He was the embodiment of the Living Word. Unlike the prophets before Him, His Words carried the very resource necessary to their fulfilment in the lives of those who received them. The name for this message was "the Gospel".4

 

 

The Gospel of Salvation

 

     Closer examination of the Gospel Jesus preached will reveal to us the complete nature and scope of the LIFE brought to us through it. The Gospel carried its own blueprint describing how it works in His People to save them. This blueprint was "coded". Instead of plainly describing how His message worked in His People, Jesus used parables - stories from nature to illustrate the operation of His saving LIFE.

 

     The parables of the Gospel centred about the theme of growing seeds. Together, Jesus' parables communicate the following realities about His salvation:

    

     1. The essential force behind His salvation is unseen (ie, spiritual)

     2. His unseen salvation begins inside the hearts of His People and works its way outward through their lives. It is a process that grows.

     3. His LIFE within His People progresses through definite stages of salvation from dead works until the whole world is affected by them. Within His salvation are levels to be attained.5

 

     Consider this more specifically through some of the parables Jesus used. In a parable about a woman who hid leaven in three measures of meal, Jesus showed that His salvation moves through three definite, basic stages in the lives of His People.6 (He also demonstrated this in the parable of the sower where the good ground brought forth three levels of fruit.)7 Using a parable about a seed growing into a tree, Jesus showed these stages of eternal LIFE to be a process beginning inwardly and working its way outwardly to affect our relationship to the world-at-large.8

      God's salvation begins as an invisible spiritual seed when the Gospel message is planted in the heart.9 This is hidden - explaining what Jesus meant when He said "The kingdom is within you."10  From there the seed of the word works its way through our souls.  Watered by the outpouring (baptism) of the Holy Spirit, His living word germinates within us to take dominion over the world of our thoughts and passions, destroying the power of indwelling sin and changing our character. At last, His salvation in us breaks through the ground of our entire way of life, causing us to walk in grace outside all the systems of the world with its works. Now the tree is highly visible. Their power is incontestable. Jesus is ruling through His People.

 

 

The Inseparable Concepts of Salvation and Kingdom

 

     Did we say "ruling"?  Yes indeed. In the completeness of their salvation, God's People are a ruling People. You see, in presenting His Gospel, Jesus spoke of salvation in terms of a "kingdom". His parables were given in terms of the "kingdom of God". He called His Gospel the "Gospel of the Kingdom".11 By placing His teaching about salvation in terms of God's kingdom, Jesus made it plain that in coming to save His People, the ultimate goal of His eternal LIFE in them was to enable them to rule earth with Him.

 

     If this is true, and if earth is presently under the dominion of the enemy babylonianism we have been studying, then we conclusively realize that the salvation of Jesus had to include SALVATION FROM THE WORKS OF FIXED HUMAN ECONOMY AND SOCIAL COMMUNITY. For how could God's People fulfil their ultimate destiny to rule with Christ if His Kingdom salvation didn't provide for their deliverance from the works of the world's kingdoms?

 

      No, dear Relative. Salvation by grace through faith was not just from spiritual darkness, nor even only from the power of indwelling sin. It is not a salvation that just gives us a personal relationship with God. In its third degree, Kingdom salvation touches our relationship to the whole world. It brings us into the place of sharing Christ's Lordship over His creation (- mandating  our salvation from slavery to the systems of human society.)  It works in us the fulfilling of the Lord's own prayer that the kingdom of heaven be brought to earth in victory over all the kingdoms of this world.12

 

     Yet as a kingdom, its resemblance in order and structure in the earth is utterly foreign to the babylonian concept of kingdom. God's kingdom is a Shepherd's kingdom. It is the rulership of the meek, the gentle, the lowly, the peacemaker, and the pure in heart.13 It is a kingdom not made with human hands, not built through conglomerations of sinful men called cities, not built on the laws of earthly economics,  and not built on the traditions  of human families or customs of their cultures.

 

      It is a kingdom that emerges from the inside out of His People until they walk in total grace outside the world's works unto its destruction. They need never lift a sword. They need only let God become Himself through them til He breaks out through their very flesh. For it is in the manifest glory of God Himself shining through His People that the kingdom of darkness is overthrown.

 

      Using  a parable of a seed that lives after it has died Jesus showed that in the ultimacy of their kingdom salvation, God's People  are given to walk in the grace of an entirely new body.14 Death is abolished for them. In their perfected holiness, they can withstand to see the King Who at last deems the earth ready for His return.15  THIS IS THE COMPLETE KINGDOM GOSPEL OF SALVATION.

 

 

Jesus and Israel

 

     For centuries before His coming, the prophets who had called Israel back to repentance had also foretold the coming of the Messiah-king who would save Israel and ultimately rule the world.16 But what happened?

 

      At the time of Jesus' birth, Israel was still in dispersion for having become like the nations. At this time, they were under the Romans. Despite their judgment under the feet of the various empires, Israel never learned from their slavery. So they seized upon the prophetic hopes of a coming king. But based on their entrenched false kingdom teaching, they desired the Messiah according to the very first king they had desired and for which they had ultimately entered into slavery. They desired a babylonian-style messiah, one like the kings of this world who would throw off the Roman yoke and restore them to their earlier imagined "golden age" under David and Solomon.

 

     But Jesus' kingdom was not of this world.17  He had come to specifically destroy the babylonian works of the devil they still craved. When Jesus came therefore, they did not recognize Him. Their time under foreign rule had never taught them how to look for another kind of king or kingdom.

 

     It was under these conditions in the chaotic milieu of Roman-governed Palestine that Jesus released His saving Gospel of the Kingdom. The message of Jesus  was directly descended from the message given to Abraham, bringing it to completion. Because He was a king after the  way of faith, Jesus' teaching was anything but "kingly" to the ears of a babylonian. Instead of promising the Jews the things they had come to accept as the norm for human society over the centuries, He called them to the things that were opposite:

 

   - Instead of telling them to fortify their cities and build great metropolises, He told them to scatter throughout the world and bring the word of salvation to all people.18 He told His followers to be mobile and, as necessary, to flee one city and enter the next.19

 

   - Instead of telling them to build financial empires through great enterprises based on the economy of the land, He told men to free themselves from the entanglements of human economy, divest themselves of all but the most necessary possessions,20 and enter into an economy based on giving.21  Trusting God to meet their necessities,22 such an economy would facilitate their mobility. (Jesus lived this way and every one of his first followers saw his natural employment ultimately terminated.)

 

   - Instead of encouraging His followers to "permeate" or "take over" or "reform" social community life, He called them to forsake their relationships which supported the world social order and to give themselves to freeing others from such systems.23

 

     This was the true message of the kingdom of God - a kingdom to be executed in the here and now by faith, but not after the fashion of the kingdoms of this world. Because of their babylonian blindness, however, the Jews had no ears for such a message. They had all but forgotten the purpose of their calling. As a nation, Israel had forgotten the war against babylonianism and the way of faith begun with Abraham. Any concept of the "kingdom of God" they had was now permanently redefined in babylonian terms according to false kingdom teaching. At the last, all they could say was, "We have no king but Caesar."24

 

     When it became clear that Israel would in no wise receive her King, Jesus turned from Israel to begin preparing His closest followers to start a new society that would live by the way of faith, obtain complete salvation, and ultimately overcome the rebellion begun under Nimrod. Meanwhile, as it became clear to Israel that Jesus was not going to serve them as a babylonian king, they turned from Him. In one final act of adultery, the Jews consorted with their Roman conquerors to deliver Him up to the same fate as the prophets before Him. As the prophet who had been foretold to come,25  Jesus was their last chance. By this act of crucifixion, they sealed their permanent disfranchisement as the called-out nation of God.

 

_______________________________

 

References:

1 Dan 10:13,20  

2 Rom 5 - 8 {3:21-26 > 5:1-2,21 > 6:6-8}  Gal 2:16-20  

3 I Cor 1:18  

4 I Cor 15:1-4 > Rom 1:16-17 > Eph 1:13>19 > I Thess 1:5 > 2:13  (I Cor 4:20)   

5 Mt 5:19; 11:11; 18:1-4; 19:30 > Phlp 3:14  II Tim 2:20-21  Rev 3:11  

6 Mt 13:33

7 Mt 13:8,23  

8 Mt 13:31-32  (Ezk 17:22-24  Dan 2:35)   

9 I Pt 1:23,25  Jms 1:18 > I Jn 3:19  

10 Lk 17:21  

11 Mt 4:23; 9:35; 24:14   

12 Mt 6:10 

13 Mt 5:3-10     

14 Jn 12:24 > I Cor 15:35-57  

15 Heb 12:14  

16 Is 9:6-7; 11:1-10; 32:1  Jer 23:5; 30:9,21; 33:15  Ezk 37:24  Dan 7:22  Mic 2:13; 5:2  Zec 6:12-13; 9:9; 12:10-14; 14:1-11      

17 Jn 18:36    

18 Mt 28:19-20  Acts 1:8  

19 Mt 10  

20 Mt 10:9-10  (I Ti 2:4) 

21 Lk 6:38     

22 Mt 6:24-35  

23 (Acts 2:40)  

24 Jn 19:15  

25 Dt 18:15


 

5. COMMISSIONING OF THE NEW COVENANT PEOPLE

 

     The founding fathers1 of the early Church received the message of salvation  from dead works in its three-fold totality. In the wisdom of God, it was Jesus' death at the hands of the Jews that paid all the prices for sin necessary to procure the new inward LIFE that would activate this salvation process in His followers.2  After Jesus ascended, the outpouring of the Holy Spirit watered the seed of the Gospel they had received causing it to germinate in new power for them.

 

     Having been with Jesus and emulating His lifestyle through the Spirit's power, the apostles were well-versed in not only salvation from the works of the devil and of the flesh, but also from the works of the world. This salvation was intrinsic to the Gospel from the start and it is this message in its three-fold entirety that was and still is THE Kingdom Gospel.

 

     The blood-bought Church of the new covenant was ordained to become the first society since the spiritual fall of old Israel to stand in opposition to babylonianism. They would walk after the complete tradition of Abraham, find salvation from the power of human society, and carry on the war against the collectivization of man, seeing  it through to its consummation in Christ's return.3  The Church inherited the mantle that old Israel forfeited by her abdication to babylonianism. The Church became the New Israel of God.4

 

     The ultimate victory of the Church over babylonianism was first foretold in Daniel's interpretation of the dream of the babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar.5  In this dream, the king saw an image representing the drive for collectivization through four successive empires. He then saw a stone cut without hands destroy the image at its feet (ie, the last empire). The stone represented the Church (in union with Christ), God's city made without hands.6  This anticipated Jesus' commissioning of His Church with Peter ("the Rock") and His prophecy that not even hell could stop the Church's expansion.7 In the dream, that expansion was pictured by the stone growing into a mountain filling the whole earth, paralleling Jesus' parable that likened His kingdom to a seed that would grow into a huge tree.8

 

The Great Commission

 

     One of the landmark features of the newly commissioned Church was to be Her ability through separated mobility to take the envived Gospel of the Kingdom to the remotest parts of the earth - what we today call the Great Commission:

 

     "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always even to the end of the age." Mt. 28:19-20     

 

      This was not a mere command. It was a commission that could be carried out only as the Church Herself walked in the fullness of its message. The message of salvation She was to carry to the ends of the earth was not just salvation from the works of the devil and of the flesh, but also the works of babylonian society with its fixed centres of population. Yet the only way She could carry this total message of salvation over the earth was if She Herself was walking in it, freed from the power of babylonianism, free to walk outside the dead works of fixed economy and social community.

 

     The commission was not only a command therefore. It was a barometer whose fulfilment would itself indicate its effectiveness in the lives of those who claimed to be saved by its message. Such was the design of salvation in all three of its dimensions that it could only be proclaimed by those who had spiritually experienced the salvation and could thereby bear witness to it. Only those who experienced the new birth could testify to it. Only those who entered salvation from sin's power through the Spirit's baptism could reach others in that power. And only those who gained salvation from babylonianism could reach the ends of the earth against the power of Babylon to proclaim the Good News. Should the news fail to reach the ends of the earth, that in itself would prove the Church Herself had not been saved by Her own message - at least not in that degree!

 

     In keeping with His will for the mobility of His New People, Jesus made no provision for them to erect permanent structures of worship. This was in sharp contrast to the Jewish landscape dotted with its synagogues and its massive stone temple in Jerusalem. (By the time of Jesus, these places were nothing but "whited sepulchres" for dead religion.)9  The only temple Jesus recognized was the temple of His own body.10  His first followers amplified this to include the Church11  wherein His People are the "living stones"12  and their mortar is the LIFE of Jesus binding them together. Jesus called His New People "ekklesia",13 meaning "called-out ones". They were the Church. In fulfilment of their out-calling, they met in transitory places - homes,14 borrowed places,15  public places,16  places of nature,17 "caves and dens of the earth".18  The thought that this new name for His People (ie, "Church") could ever become associated with permanent buildings was nothing short of abomination in the mind of Christ.

 

_______________________________

 

 

References:

1 (Eph 2:20)  

2 Acts 2:22-24,36  I Cor 1:23-24  

3 Jn 15:16-27; 17:1-26 

4 Gal 6:16 

5 Dan 2:34-35,44-45  

6 Heb9:11>11:10; 12:22 > Eph 2:20-22  I Pt 2:5 

7 Mt 16:18  

8 Mt 13:31-32  

9 Mt 23:16-22 

1O Jn2:19-22 (Ezk 11:16 Rev21:22)    

11 Eph 2:20-22> Heb 3:6          

12 I Pt 2:5  

13 Mt 16:18 ([Gk] "ekklesia"="church")

14 Rom 16:15    

15 Acts 19:9-10

16 Acts 5:20-21,25,42 

17 Acts 16:13

18 Heb 11:38


 

6. SUBVERSION OF THE NEW COVENANT PEOPLE

 

     At this point our review of history takes an unhappy downturn. For though the Gospel of the Kingdom carried within it the seed of LIFE necessary to enable its believers to fulfil the way of Abraham and enter into all dimensions of salvation from dead works, that LIFE had to be activated by confession and action to be made effective.1  Without it, the seed could be lost from the heart, not taking root, and be yielded up.2  As well, the Gospel itself was capable of being counterfeited. Like the original message of Abraham and the prophesies of the coming messiah, the Gospel too could be redefined in terms of the very works from which it was designed to save men. Men could be led to believe they were living by faith when they were living by dead works. They could be persuaded into serving the kingdom of Nimrod in the name of the kingdom of God.

 

     Like Old Israel therefore, God's New Israel began to yield to the insidious infiltration of the spirit of babylonianism. The Gospel of the Kingdom underwent gradual, subtle changes to accommodate babylonian society - ultimately to become a completely prostituted, counterfeit message of salvation. One by one, the three phases of salvation by grace were subverted and lost until, like Old Israel, the Church-at-large became completely melded in with world society. (We say the "Church-at-large" because, despite the corruption of the overall body, God has preserved to Himself those individuals and very small groups in every century since the commissioning who have obtained and maintained testimony to complete salvation in opposition to the spiritual harlotry festering around them.)3

 

Salvation from the Works of the World - LOST

 

     The first dimension of salvation to be ceded by the Church to the world is the dimension for which we are contending in this article: salvation from the dead works of fixed human economy and social community. The early Church gave up Her mobility, losing Her outward distinctiveness as a moving society of faith among man's immobile population centres. The Church "settled down" and began to adapt to babylonian economy and community rooted in the cities.

 

     The first hint of this subversion is suggested to us in the New Testament where we read of the persecution which broke out after the death of Stephen. The persecution  scattered the Church.4  The unspoken implication behind the story is that the Church was massing together in Jerusalem. In so doing, She was already giving up ground to the spirit of babylonianism behind that harlot city. Because the Church was failing to disperse, She was judged and forced to disperse by persecution. The instrument of persecution was the people She was beginning to become like - babylonian Jews. (This fulfiled several patterns we have already considered.)

 

     Eventually, despite this early warning sign from God, and despite the faithful few who retained their mobility to carry the kingdom Gospel to a number of distant lands, the Church-at-large rooted in to adopt the Roman fixed economy and social community. True to form, the Church also began building permanent places of worship using the tell-tale elements of brick and mortar. The Roman Empire became dotted with such high places as Israel had been. This manifestation came to the place where the entire meaning for "church" became transferred from the People of God to the buildings in which they worshipped.

 

     The absorption of the Church into Roman society became so complete that the Church Herself came to be identified by the babylonian adjective "Roman". What was originally the Church at Rome became the "Roman Church" and applied to everyone in the empire. As the other dimensions of the Gospel were gradually lost, complete union between the Church and the Roman government was eventually established.

 

     To service this reversion, and in keeping with the pattern we earlier saw, the Church redefined the kingdom of God as the Roman empire under the Church's direction. Thus was born the first brand of false kingdom teaching relative to the Church and the Gospel. The only difference now between the counterfeit kingdom message held by Old Israel and that advanced by the Roman Church was that Israel looked for a Jewish babylonian kingdom without reference to Jesus Christ while the Roman Church proclaimed a gentile babylonian kingdom in the name of Jesus Christ. The essential similarity of the spirit behind these false gospels was confirmed as the Roman Church set about to persecute the remaining faithful as the Jews had persecuted the prophets.

 

Salvation from the Works of the Flesh - LOST

 

     Once the outermost dimension of salvation was given up, it was only a matter of time before the inward two dimensions would be lost. After ceding to the works of the world, the Church ceded to the works of the flesh. The message of holiness through the crucifying power of the Holy Spirit became transformed to teach holiness through the obeying of religious forms, laws, traditions, and ascetic practices that counterfeited the work of the Spirit in the believer's life.5 As well, the supernatural manifestations of the Holy Spirit given until the Church reached perfection (ie, complete salvation)6  were quenched out of the Church. Instead, it was taught that they had "ceased" and "died out".7  This meant now that the Church had not only lost Her distinctiveness through mobility, but Her distinctiveness as a force for moral righteousness within the societies She had come to inhabit. The believers lost their ability to deal with the power of sin in the flesh, yielding to the same temptations and moral weaknesses of the societies now choking them.8

 

     This reminds us of an earlier type and example when Lot chose to abandon the mobile life he shared with Abraham in order to settle in the babylonian centre established at Sodom.9 As a result of this move, he also sacrificed what moral distinctiveness he may have had prior to this. His presence in the city brought no offense to the people there. He was willing for his daughters to be raped, and he was given to drunkenness. His wife was in love with the city, and his daughters were not beyond inducing him to incest with them. Although we know he had not lost the basic seed of righteousness,10 we read that he just barely escaped the destruction of Sodom "by the skin of his teeth",11 and that only because Abraham the faithful had interceded for him to God.

Salvation from the Works of the devil - LOST

 

     Finally, the most basic dimension of salvation from the true Kingdom Gospel was lost. Commonly and simply known as "The Gospel", this is the message of salvation through faith in the blood of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins.12 The loss of this root message of the Gospel ushered the Church into that period of history appropriately called the "Dark Ages".

 

      By forfeiting the seed spiritual truth of the salvation message, the Church disfranchised Herself from the rightful name of the Church of Jesus Christ. The body had now gone beyond losing its distinctiveness to losing its identity. The truth of salvation by grace was now totally usurped by a counterfeit message of salvation by works through "the Church".

 

      What was called "the Church" was now nothing more than the religious arm of babylonian society. It incorporated into itself all other forms of pagan religion and sponsored them in the name of Jesus Christ. Rightfully called "Religious Babylon", this body which had been founded to stand against the brick-and-mortar of babylonian society now  served as that mortar itself and came to be recognized by it. It became the bond for holding secular Roman society together. Needless to say, this institution, like Old Israel before it, was and is a fierce opponent and persecutor of those faithfully scattered people since who retained their identity, preserved the basic message of faith, and kept their commitment to the total way of salvation from all dead works.

        

_______________________________

References:

1 Jms 2:14-15 > Heb 4:2  

2 Mt 13:3-7,19-22        

3 Rom 11:1-5      

4 Ac 8:1-4  

5 Gal 4:9-10  Col 2:18,16-23 > Is 1:10-17; 57:6; 66:3-4,17-18  Jer 6:20; 7:21-22; 14:11-12  Hos 2:16; 8:11-13  Am 5:21-23  Zep 1:4-6  Hag 2:14  Mal 1:6-14; 2:10-17   

6 Eph 4:7-13  I Cor 13:8-10 > Php 3:12-14 

7 (II Pt 3:4) 

8 Mt 13:22     

9 Gen 13:10-13; 19:1-38

1O II Pt 2:7 

11 (Ju 22) 

12 Ac 2:38 Ro 3:21-26

 


 

7. GRADUAL RESTORATION OF THE KINGDOM GOSPEL

 

     By all rights we should already be in the Millennium.1  Jesus should have been able to return before now. The quest for world collectivism should have been destroyed long ago. The three-fold Gospel of Jesus was sufficient to bring a quick end to world babylonianism if it had been faithfully followed. Had it remained unsubverted, the message would have been taken to the ends of the earth where it would have undone all empires and returned the world to the mobility it had before Nimrod. Collectivized society would have disintegrated through the complete salvation of much of the world's people, making possible Jesus' return to shepherd the planet.

 

     But we know it didn't happen this way. There was unseen war in the heavenlies, - factors beyond mere human will to obey the Gospel. The kingdom message was subverted and lost at large. The Church was seduced into "shacking up" with fixed society, facilitated by adulterated kingdom teaching. We saw a nearly exact replay of the fall of Old Israel (despite Paul's warning).2 The night in which no man could work overtook the world.3

 

     One wants to ask why God allowed this? Perhaps the answer is found in the words of Jesus who prophesied that, before a seed can live, it must first die.4 Jesus had already likened His kingdom (hence His Church) to a seed that would grow to cover the earth. Would it not follow that, in terms of God's progressive plan for the Church's ultimate victory over babylonianism, His own plan should be allowed to die only to rise again as He Himself died and was resurrected?

 

     One might also ask why God did not simply cut off the Church as He did with Israel and begin again with a third covenant people? Perhaps it was because, beyond Jesus, there is no more sacrifice for sins.5  There could be no third covenant. If there was to be a People of God to complete the way of Abraham and of Jesus, they would have to be restored from within the dead body of the lost new covenant people even as Samson found honey in the lion's carcass.6  This was not impossible, for we read that one day there will even be a restoration of the first covenant people. They will be made one with the restored new covenant people at the very end - "and so all Israel" (old and new) "will be saved" together.7 

 

     So it pleased God to begin restoring His New Israel from their fallen place. That Restoration is now in progress. The Kingdom Gospel has three dimensions. The dimensions were lost one by one. Two have been restored with one to follow. The dimensions have been restored in opposite order to which they were lost. Salvation from the works of darkness was lost last and restored first. Salvation from the works of the world was lost first and is about to become the last restored.

 

     It is hard to imagine restoration of salvation not yet experienced. For instance, before the Reformation, true salvation from sin's penalty was virtually unknown and therefore nearly impossible to imagine. Now it is largely taken for granted. The simple first-degree "Gospel" is well known throughout the world. Again, before the Holiness-Pentecostal Movement, it pressed human imagination to conceive of a deeper work of the Spirit to free the believer from sin's power into a life of the miraculous. Now the "Full Gospel" is widely known though not as widely received as the simple Gospel.

 

     In the same way, it is now difficult for the Church (especially the Church in the West) to imagine salvation from the dead works of collective, industrial society - even though it was for the purpose of destroying such society that Her salvation from it was ordained. The Church has almost no conception of the need for such salvation. Yet in the Millennium, such salvation will be considered as elementary as the present evangelical world considers first-degree salvation from sin's penalty.

 

     Why God chose to restore the degrees of salvation one at a time instead of all together is another mystery. This staggering-out of the Restoration is at the root of the many heartaches, strifes, and divisions within the overall body. A group saved in one dimension becomes antagonistic toward those who press on into a further degree. Certainly this has worked to obscure the identity of the true Body of Christ in the world. The Church within Herself cannot decide who is "saved" and who is not - each party drawing up its own definition to settle the debate. Perhaps we will find the answer to this later. Suffice it to say here that two distinct degrees of the lost Kingdom Gospel have already been restored. We turn to review the events and patterns of these restorations.

 

 

The Reformation

 

     Each move toward Restoration was spearheaded by pioneers, - apostles raised up by God to take on the surrounding darkness of some form of "salvation-by-dead-works" teaching that blinded the Church.8  Like Abraham, these pioneers were raised up from within the ranks of the overall babylonish body to lead out a major body of believers from the darkness into "new" (ie, restored) light. The pioneers of the first Restoration were men we today call "the Reformers" - Martin Luther, John Calvin, Ulrich Zwingli, and others.

 

      The issue then was as it is now: salvation by grace through faith in Jesus Christ from dead works. The degree of dead works against which these men preached was the works of man to earn his way out of guilt and into heaven through "the Church". The salvation they preached was first-degree certainty of present eternal life and salvation from  eternal separation from God after death. For their faithfulness in the tradition of the Old Testament prophets, the Reformers were hotly persecuted by the great surrounding harlot-body of Romanism out of which they had been born-again.9

 

     Make no mistake. The Reformers were not the first to recover the light of this salvation. Indeed, God had preserved to Himself a faithful, scattered remnant of little-known believers who had never lost the light of salvation. These had already been persecuted throughout the centuries. But in keeping with the precedent set with Abraham, God raised up the Reformers from the heart of the Roman Church-state when He was ready to challenge it head-on and lead a great body out of it.

 

 

The Holiness-Pentecostal-Charismatic Restoration

 

     As critical as the Reformation was in recovering salvation from the works of darkness, it did not recover the complete Gospel of salvation. The Reformation left untouched salvation from the works of the flesh for perfecting personal holiness. The Reformers offered no salvation by grace from sin's power. Their only solution for holiness was "keep the Law" and "Do your best". (Today, the spiritual descendants of the Reformers and Baptists still preach salvation by works from sin's power through keeping the Law, and/or New Testament ordinances, and/or various other ecclesiastical traditions of men. It is the standard teaching in today's evangelical and fundamentalist circles.)10

 

 

The Holiness Movement

 

     About 250 years after the Reformation began, God initiated a new phase of Restoration to bring back the second degree of the Kingdom Gospel. For this, God reached into the state-churches descended from the Reformers to raise up new apostles. The earliest most notable of these was John Wesley from the English state-church. Others raised up later include Charles Finney, W.E Boardman, Robert and Hannah Smith, D.L. Moody, R.A. Torrey, William Booth, Andrew Murray, A.B. Simpson, A.W. Tozer, and Watchman Nee.

 

     These men all preached a deeper work of salvation by grace after initial conversion. This work was necessary to obtain deliverance from the power of sin in the body and to be able to live a "victorious life" over sin.11 It was described as the "crucifying work of the Spirit".12  Its theme was "the cross"13 and "death to self".14  Its focus was the emotional nature of the soul with its carnal desires. This work of salvation was recognized as a distinct work after conversion, usually centering about a "crisis" in the believer's life. It was vaguely defined by different terms such as "baptism of the Holy Spirit", "sanctification", "second blessing", and "baptism of fire".

 

 

The Pentecostal-Charismatic Movements

 

     The Restoration of salvation from the works of the flesh unfolded into several succeeding phases or "waves" of sub-restoration. About the turn of the 20th century, God expanded the Holiness Restoration to include restoration of the supernatural gifts, anointings, and manifestations of the Holy Spirit.15 Further apostles were raised from the ranks of the Methodists, Wesleyans, and the "deeper life" bodies of believers. These men and women became known as "Apostles of Pentecost." They included such front-runners as Charles Parham, William Seymour, A.J Tomlinson, Smith-Wigglesworth, Aimee Semple MacPherson, Charles Price, Kathryn Kuhlman, Oral Roberts, and Kenneth Hagin - to name just a few. Each was and/or is known for their particular supernatural ministries in healing, faith, and deliverance from demons.16

 

     While the earlier Holiness Restoration dealt primarily with the carnal desires, these later phases specially challenged the works of the carnal mind.17  They attacked the entire world view of naturalism enslaving the western Church since Thomas Aquinas in the 13th century. The pioneers of the Pentecostal-Charismatic Movements particularly clarified the nature of the "baptism of the Holy Spirit" which to this point had been ill-defined and not precisely identifiable. The Holiness Movement had focused more on the works of the emotional nature. Because of this, the "baptism" had come to be defined in terms of an unpredictable "crisis point" in the believer's life - a teaching which left some trying to "earn" it. But the Apostles of Pentecost showed that the Holy Spirit could be received by faith upon conversion and could be precisely recognized by His manifesting of supernatural gifts in the believer, especially the ability to pray in a heavenly language.18

 

     The Pentecostal Movement evolved into the Charismatic Movement of the 1960's and 70's, recognized by the term "Full Gospel". This in turn branched into the "Discipleship" and "Faith" Movements of the 1970's and 80's.

 

      Unfortunately, with the recovery of the supernatural aspects of salvation, some of the basic stones of earlier Restoration have been bypassed in these later movements. Many people have been drawn into the nets of these later phases of Restoration without having benefited from the foundational messages of Restoration laid through the Reformation and the Holiness Movement. Because of a lack of more foundational truths from earlier Restoration such as the fear, sovereignty, and judgment of God, and self-denial, the later Charismatic Movement and its offspring have been marked by a superficiality and shallowness that has brought needless reproach to their followers and the "Full Gospel". Nevertheless, while some of the apostles and followers of these later restorations have yielded to tangential errors through excesses and personal weaknesses, God has used all of them in some way to recover and deepen the Kingdom Gospel of salvation from the works of the flesh.

 

______________________________

 

References:

1 (Rev 20:4)  

2 I Cor 10:1-11  Rom 11:17-22  

3 Jn 9:4  

4 Jn 12:24  

5 Heb 10:26  

6 Jg 14:5-9  

7 Rom 11:25-32  (> Ezk 37:15-22)  

8 (I Cor 4:9-13)  

9 (II Cor 4:8-9; 6:4-10)  

10 (Gal 3:1 - 5:26)  

11 Rom 6:19 > 8:13  

12 Rom 8:13 > Col 3:5  Gal 2:20; 5:24  

13 Gal 6:14  Lk 9:23; 14:27  

14 Lk 9:24  Jn 12:25  I Cor 15:31  II Cor 4:10-11  

15 Rom 12  I Cor 12 and 14  

16 Mk 16:17-18  Acts 2:43; 5:15  

17 Rom 12:2  Eph 4:23   

18 Acts 2:1-21,38-39 > 8:14-17; 10:44-46; 19:11-12  (Gal 3:5)


 

8. NEW PATTERN FOR PERSECUTION

 

 

     During this 470 year Restoration of the Gospel, a new pattern for persecution emerged. Much earlier in our study we learned that when God's People apostacize, they persecute the voices He raises up to testify against them. This precedent was set in Old Israel culminating in the crucifixion of King Jesus Himself. The pattern continued as the Jews persecuted the New Covenant People. Then the corrupted babylonian "Church" persecuted the faithful remnant throughout the Dark Ages and then the Reformers.

 

     Since the beginning of the Restoration, however, a new pattern for persecution emerged which continues to this day. Because of the staggering-out of the Restoration into succeeding waves, the pattern of persecution became transplanted to occur within the Restoring Church itself. With each new phase of restored salvation, the new body that arises is persecuted by the spiritual descendants of the preceding moves of Restoration for exposing their remaining vestiges of babylonian harlotry. Thus a perpetual sword of judgment and division has fallen within the restoring Church these 470 years.

 

     In every phase and sub-phase of Restoration, we see the children of the earlier move persecute the apostles and followers of the succeeding move, casting them out of their brick-and-mortar synagogues.1  The spiritual descendants of the Reformers cast out the apostles of the Holiness Movement. The descendants of the "Deeper Life" Movement cut off the apostles of the Pentecostal Movement. The children of Pentecost cast out the pioneers of the Charismatic Move, etc.

 

     To complicate the pattern, the process happens in reverse when the children (and apostles) of a later move persecute those associated with an earlier move whose more foundational truths they have not first absorbed. The best example of this is the arrogance with which the purveyors of the Charismatic Renewal and Faith Movement have inveighed against those who promote the message of self-denial (from the Holiness Movement) and the message of the fear and judgment of God (from the Reformation).

 

     Yes. The staggered nature of God's Restoration has led to an internecine war of persecution among the various bodies of His People reminiscent of the intertribal wars during the time of the judges in Old Israel.2 It fulfils by unique application the prophecy that for Jesus' sake, households would be divided.3 One of those households was His own.4  This intra-Church persecution has been marked by three notable characteristics:

 

Twisted Use of Scripture

 

     God gave the Scriptures to His People of all ages to aid them in their quest for salvation. The accurate use of them, however, was dependent upon having access to God's mind for true context. This in turn was dependent upon approaching the Scriptures with a pure heart and teachable spirit, for only to such a heart would God reveal His true mind.5

 

     But in the hands of a mind polluted by some form of babylonian unbelief, the Scriptures are not only a stumblingblock over which to trip,6  but a dangerous weapon for the destruction of the righteous. Ever since the babylonian Jews used the Law to kill Jesus,7  the Scriptures have been a central feature in the persecution of apostles of Restoration by babylonian-minded descendants of earlier Restoration who claim to "stand on the Word".

 

     Throughout the Restoration there have been a consistent set of Scriptures used to persecute the faithful. These Scriptures have been used to support three basic charges against the faithful:

 

     1. The faithful are "rebellious" against church and/or state authority.8

     2. The faithful are guilty of "causing division" among the brethren.

     3. The faithful are "unloving" toward the brethren.

 

     Today, any time a pioneer of greater salvation or his followers address some form of remaining babylonianism in the Church and act to free others from it, these charges are used against them backed with supposedly relevant Scriptures ("obey them that have the rule over you9...mark them which cause divisions/ and avoid them10...this is my command that you love one another,"11  etc.) Additionally, other Scriptures are used to suit the particular issue or situation. That Jesus Himself could have been convicted based on such Scriptures should be obvious and proves that, unless interpreted by the mind of the Spirit, the Scriptures alone can be used to prove nothing about anything, least of all a man's righteousness.

 

Charge of Promoting Licentious Living in the Name of Grace

 

     Besides the illegitimate use of Scriptures, another attack is maintained by religious believers upon maturing believers. Every time a pioneer promotes a greater degree of salvation by grace, he is charged with advocating some form of spiritual lawlessness. When the apostle Paul advocated salvation by grace apart from the works of the Law, babylonian Jews charged him with preaching, "Let us sin more that grace may abound...let us do evil that good may come."12

 

      Since that time, all believers governed by some remaining form of babylonian-mindedness have laid some form of that charge against any who promote a greater degree of salvation from human works. The Roman Church system charged the Reformers with preaching civil anarchy when they preached salvation outside the works of their system. The Reformers' descendants charged the Holiness apostles with advocating self-indulgent living when they preached salvation outside the works of the Law and Reformation traditions. The descendants of Holiness charged the Pentecostal and Charismatic pioneers with mental anarchy for preaching salvation from the works of the natural mind.

 

Charge of Excessive Behaviour

 

     Perhaps one of the better excuses for the Pharisees' rejection of Jesus was the displays of the mindless multitude around Him who sought His salvation for self-serving purposes.13 Even so to this day, those who resist a further message of grace point to the excesses and faults of the proponents of that message to justify their own continuance in unbelief.

 

     It is unfortunate that every move of God's grace is plagued with the barnacles of those who abuse its message. Because of them, the way of salvation is blasphemed,14 whether it be the abuses of the Reformers, the Deeper Life advocates, or the Charismatics. At the same time, however, God will not allow the abuses surrounding His Gospel to be used by others to preserve their remaining unbelief. Abuse of grace will never justify unbelief through dead works, and unbelief through dead works will never justify the abuse of grace.

 

     A special word is in order for any who claims to be saved by grace in any degree. If one tries to point to the abuse of a greater grace by some to justify his remaining unbelief, then he must disclaim his own salvation. This is because Christianity itself is plagued by those who abuse its most basic message of grace. If one refuses to move forward into greater salvation because of some who have abused it, then he cannot justify why he is a Christian at all because the most basic Gospel was abused long before he was ever converted. If one was able to be converted despite the abuses then, he cannot justify remaining where he is because of abuses now.

______________________________

 

References:

1 Jn 16:2  

2 Jg 20 - 21  

3 Mt 10:21,34-38  Lk 12:49-53         

4 Heb 3:6  

5 Jn 7:17  (Mic 2:7) > Mt 11:25 > I Tim 1:5-8 

6 I Pt 2:8 > Mt 13:13-15  Jn 5:45-47  

7 Jn 10:33; 19:7  

8 (Jer 32:1-5; 38:4-5  Am 7:10-11)  

9 Heb 13:17  

1O Rom 16:17-18  

11 Jn 15:12  (I Jn 4:7-12 etc.)  

12 Rom 3:8; 6:1,15      

13 Jn 6:14-15,26 > 7:47-48; 12:19  

14 Rom 2:24  Is 52:5 Ezk 36:29-23


 

9. GRADUAL SALVATION FROM THE POLITICAL WORKS OF THE WORLD

 

 

     The one remaining form of dead works and spiritual adultery that neither of the first two restorations attacked head-on was the Church's remaining slavery to the works of the world. Despite the great advances in salvation by grace, neither the Reformation nor Holiness-Pentecostal Restorations directly confronted the babylonian quest for the total collectivization of man. With few exceptions, the Church never broke Her shackles to move out from under the works of babylonian economies and communities to fulfil the Great Commission. Meanwhile, as the Church has only begun to awake from Her adulterous sleep, the world has been rushing pell-mell toward collectivization under satan, awaiting inauguration of its world empire under the last great king of Babylon  from Nimrod's dynasty.

 

     Though neither of the first two restorations secured salvation from babylonianism, the Church's relationship to fixed society was not left totally untouched. In particular, the Church's direct tie to political babylonianism was greatly affected. As a side-effect of the first two restorations, the Church's gradual deliverance from political babylonianism paved the way for the coming final Restoration that will sever the Church's relationship to all the works of fixed society. In this section, we want to trace the history of the Church's increasing salvation from political works of the world stemming from the first two restorations.

 

A First Blow to Tyranny

 

     Of all the alliances the Church has ever made with collective society, the alliance of Church with the political sector has been the most abominable. It is the crowning manifestation of spiritual harlotry. The union of Church and state was effected in principle under Emperor Constantine in 323 A.D. It culminated in the inauguration of the Holy Roman Empire in 800 A.D. giving equal authority to pope and emperor.

 

      The first crack in this unholy union occurred as a side-effect of the Reformation. Until the Reformation, the Holy Roman Church-state retained its monolithic grip over the continent of Europe. That grip was broken through the Reformation. In its wake, Europe came to be dotted with a host of smaller independent church-states. The Roman "Catholic" Church was no longer catholic. The new diversity opened the door to the eventual total dissolution of the church-state alliance.

 

Separation of Church and State

 

     About 1636, half-way between the start of the Reformation and the Holiness Restoration, the decisive blow to the church union with political babylonianism was struck on the newly-settled shores of the American continent. At this time, new babylonian-style colonies were being established by predominantly Christian people who had fled Europe because they were being persecuted for divergent views by the state churches there. In founding their new colonies, these settlers modeled them after the church-states they had fled.

 

     From among these colonies, the Lord raised up a prophet who saw the intrinsic evil of this union between the Church and political babylonianism. His name was Roger Williams. For his opposition to this form of harlotry, Williams was predictably persecuted and put out of the "synagogues" of these colonies (which meant banishment from their societies altogether).1 Nevertheless, his voice was carried back to England where the spiritual momopoly of the state church there was destroyed and other free bodies of believers began to flourish. So influential was the ministry of Roger Williams in breaking this union that when the American colonies united to become an official nation in 1787, no provision for an established national church was made. The United States of America became the first nation of Roman Empire descent to be free of official union with the Church since 323 A.D.

 

     (Unfortunately, Roger Williams did not go far enough in leading the Church in America out of complete babylonianism. Separation of Church and state is not full separation of Church and fixed society. Though Williams achieved the former, he left the latter relatively untouched. He was himself subverted into establishing another collective society named Providence. This is a tragedy in view of his original purpose for coming to America which was to fulfil the Great Commission among the native Indians.)

 

     After the dissolution of church-state alliance, the Church was left to its own artificial, self-supporting political forms called "denominations". Now the political force for holding the Church together was found entirely within the Church Herself. But it was still man-made force. The structure of denominationalism was modeled after the political structures of babylonian society and drew its support from the Church's remaining rootedness in babylonian economy and social community. Still, it was a marked improvement over church-statism on the road to complete salvation from collective society. Denominationalism was the dominant political force at the beginning of God's second phase of Gospel Restoration in the late 18th century.

 

Greater Evangelical Freedom

 

     As the Holiness Restoration gained momentum and the deeper work of the Spirit to save from sin's power took root, the disintegration of artificial political power in the Church continued. Human control began yielding to greater Spirit control. Denominationalism began giving way to looser confederations of churches called "fellowships", "conventions", "alliances", and "assemblies". Churches began seeing a need to returning to simpler forms of government patterned as closely as possible after the New Testament picture.

 

     One notable movement toward simpler Church government and more independent bodies arose in England during the 1830's. Under the leadership of John Darby, the "Plymouth Brethren" movement was launched. It stressed plurality of leadership in local Church government. Other similar moves took place such as "the Restoration" - now known as that affiliation of churches called "Church of Christ". Both these movements stressed the evil of a body of believers accepting a name outside the name of Christ.

 

     All this was very good. Unfortunately, because all these organizations of believers were still enslaved to the remaining works of fixed economy and social community, they all eventually stagnated. They  became equally static in their preoccupations with particular persons and corners of truth. In turn they were closed to all but their own limited circles of fellowship. By this, they became denominational in spirit and in practice, if not in name. With us today are the synagogues and sepulchres of their spiritual descendants.2

 

     One last noteworthy point about the Holiness Restoration is that some significant ground was broken in taking the Gospel (as it was restored to that point) to the ends of the earth. Various missionary organizations and societies arose within and without the established churches of America and Britain. A number of believers went out to foreign lands. Of course, it was a small percentage in comparison to the number who stayed, and the Gospel they carried was incomplete, being at best two-dimensional and in most cases only one. As well, they usually carried the "extra baggage" of their American and European cultures with them, mixing it with their Gospel. Nevertheless, this was the first significant mass effort in Church history since the first apostles to fulfil the Great Commission. These missionary efforts presaged the coming of complete salvation from collective society when ALL the Church will be liberated to fulfil the Great Commission and to prove that She has been saved by Her own message.

 

New Wineskins For New Wine

 

     With the added restoration of the gifts of the Holy Spirit to the Church in the 20th century, the artificial control of men in the Church was broken even more. For the first time since the very early Church, the travelling supernatural ministries of apostles and prophets were openly restored. Men and women with incontestable supernatural ministries in healing, faith, and deliverance from demons went up and down through the land of America. Walking outside of the established churches, they showed the Holy spirit to be unlimited by any man's concept of how the Church  should be "run". Through the displays of the dynamic spiritual power entrusted to them, they forever destroyed the notion that spiritual authority can be conveyed by seminary degree and parliamentary vote! These pioneers broke all the traditions and customs that the earlier established bodies had incorporated into their stagnant organizations.

 

     With the coming of the Charismatic Movements, the local bodies of believers became more independent than ever before. Although many mistakenly used the Charismatic "Renewal" to try to preserve the dead bodies and old wineskins3 of past denominational structures, those who were delivered from these structures by this movement became the freest of all from false human control. They have become more conscious of the other believers in their locality than ever before. (Many of these bodies have dropped the word "church" altogether from their names because of the babylonian connotations come to be associated with the word.) In addition to them, many spontaneous conventions and congresses have been occurring outside the control of established church bodies, not to mention multitudes of other para-church ministries that have arisen in recent decades. Indeed, the Church has become more freed than ever from the political works of the world. 

 

Church in Transition

 

     Perhaps three most recent moves of God's Spirit portend above all others the nearness of the Church's final liberation from all the works of collective society. The first is the increasing move to house churches in the West.4  God's People are just beginning to become aware of the evil of their brick-and-mortar synagogues and how stifled their relationships have become because of them. Though they do not realize it, this is preparing them for the time when they may no longer meet in buildings.

 

     The second transitional move is the Faith and Prosperity Movement. Despite its disrepute because of its abuses and subverted applications, this move is preparing God's true sheep for life outside the systems of fixed babylonian economy. It is teaching them how to take on the physical world to obtain God's physical and material provision, preparing them to live in an economy based on giving in advance of the time they will not be able to buy or sell in Babylon or use its hospitals. The true sheep are availing themselves of these vital realities to set themselves free from all human works.

 

     Third, there is the quiet, less obvious move in recent years of various bodies into isolated Christian communities outside the ties to babylonian society-at-large. These believers have seen the "handwriting on the wall"5 and have begun moving out of babylonian population centres into the more remote, rural quarters of North America. Though in many cases these communities are re-rooting into their own collective establishments similar to the first American colonies, the true sheep are learning preparation for a completely mobile life that will enable them to eventually take the Gospel to the ends of the earth.

                      _____________________

 

     These three moves point the way to the final stage of Restoration. But they only point the way. They are not there yet. In not a few cases they are plagued by parallel false kingdom teaching which is bringing them into disrepute and causing many to stumble. Overall, the Restoring Church-at-large in Euro-America is not even begun to prepare for the coming salvation from all the works of fixed society even though so much has happened to save Her from the political works.

 

Remaining High Places

 

     We read at times in the Scripture where Old Israel underwent periods of revival under certain kings. But then the story qualifies the revival by saying, "Yet the high places were not removed."6  The revival was incomplete. So too, the Church's Restoration is incomplete. Her "high places" remain. What are they? They are the stone temples and synagogues where a mixed offering is yet poured out - partly to God, partly to the honour of the Church's remaining relationship with fixed economy and social community by which those high places are built.

 

     Why is the Church still so enslaved to the financial and social works of collective society despite Her monumental gains in freedom from political babylonianism? The answer in large part is due to the rise of false kingdom teaching which has dogged the steps of the Church's Restoration and risen like tares along Her restored blessings.7  We now turn to trace the course of this teaching which has arisen alongside the Church's gains in salvation to reinforce Her remaining bondages under collective society

 ____________________________

 

References:

1 Jn 16:12  

2 Mt 23:27  

3 Mt 9:17  

4 (Rom 16:5)  

5 Dan 5    

6 Ex 20:26 > I Ki (3:2-4; 12:31-32; 14:22-23;) 15:14;  22:43    II Ki 12:3; 14:4; 15:4,35; (16:4; 17:9-11)  

7 Mt 13:25


 

10. THE RISE OF FALSE KINGDOM TEACHING THROUGH TWO RESTORATIONS

 

 

     Earlier in our study, we noted five precedents for patterns that were established when Old Israel reverted back to babylonianism. One of these was the rise of a counterfeit kingdom message. By redefining the purpose of God's People  in babylonian terms, this message could give the babylonian-at-heart people justification for living "like the nations" while allowing them to profess faithfulness to the way of faith. We saw how the Jews failed to receive Messiah Jesus because they redefined the prophetic promises to expect a king like Nimrod. Later, we saw how the Gospel of the Kingdom was redefined to allow the Church to cohabit with the Roman Empire in the name of establishing the kingdom of God.

 

     The development of false kingdom teaching has been a master stroke of genius on satan's part. It has allowed him over the centuries to garner from the ranks of his most dangerous opposition his best allies in promoting world collectivism - all without their knowing it. The strategy of subverting God's People through false kingdom teaching has done more to bring the world under complete collectivization than the overt effort of any single empire.

 

     During the true Gospel's 470 year Restoration from the total darkness induced by counterfeit teaching, false kingdom teaching has not remained dormant. With each degree of Restoration, the spirit of this teaching has redoubled its efforts to keep the Church bound to Her remaining ties to fixed society. In our last section, we saw how the Church has gained gradual freedom from the political works of babylonian society. In this section we will observe how that, in the wake of Her freedom from political works, the Church has become more enslaved to the works of human economy and social community through false kingdom teaching.

 

 

False Kingdom Teaching: Reformation Brand

 

     Through the Reformation, the first degree Kingdom Gospel was recovered - spiritual salvation from the wages of sin.1 This recovery broke the power of the totally false kingdom message of the Roman Catholic Empire which identified the (Holy) Roman Empire as the kingdom of God. But because the Reformers recovered only the first degree of the Gospel and remained enslaved to the dead works of that empire, their teaching concerning the kingdom of God spelled a new mixture of truth and error that left behind an even more insidious brand of false teaching than the one out of which they had recovered.

 

     The Reformers had restored the truth that only those who are saved by grace from sin's penalty constitute the true kingdom of God in the earth. But they still believed in the dead works of collectivized society, including union of Church with state-babylonianism. Instead of pressing on in kingdom truth to break free from those works, they mixed their seed truth concerning God's kingdom with their remaining darkness. They extended their definition of God's kingdom to include the church-states inhabited by the saved. They said in essence:

     "The kingdom of God is a nation like the nations except that all or most of its people are saved by faith and its rulers are saved and in good standing with the National Church."

 

     Because of the truth in this definition which recognizes the essentially spiritual nature of God's kingdom, true believers were made more loyal to babylonian society and government rather than freer from it. Therefore this form of false kingdom teaching was more captivating and harder to break than the more obvious total lie of the Roman Church-state message. It gave rise to the indelible false term "Christian nations" applied to the various European church-states of the Reformers. Today, Christianity in the western world is still held in the grips of this lie. What is more, this "reformed brand" of false kingdom teaching became instrumental in bringing the drive for world collectivization to new reaches throughout the earth.

 

 

A New World Headquarters for False Kingdom Teaching

 

     In the 1620's (one century after the Reformation began), certain spiritual descendants of the Reformers called "Puritans" left Europe to establish new colonies on the shores of North America (- a land which to that time had almost never seen a fixed society and to which the drive for globalism had hardly reached). With them, the Puritans imported the reformed brand of false kingdom teaching. They intended to build from scratch what in their minds was the "pure" kingdom of God. (This was in contrast to the European "kingdoms of God" which were converted from originally pagan societies.)

 

     For establishing their new fixed society, the Puritans took as their model Old Israel. They called their settlement "New Israel" saying, "We are a citty set on a hill." In so saying they failed to realize that the "citty" they were fashioning themselves to be was babylonian at root, contrary to the way of faith, and therefore NOT the true kingdom of God. The "New Israel" they thought themselves to be was molded after that Israel which had sown the seeds for her own destruction by becoming a fixed society like the nations. In establishing themselves after that model, the Puritans likewise planted the seeds for the destruction of their society.

 

     No, the Puritans did not establish the kingdom of God on earth. They did not advance the way of the true "pilgrim" Abraham nor fulfil the Great Commission. Instead, through their deceived kingdom teaching, they unwittingly became the instruments for bringing the satanic drive for world collectivization to the New World. In the name of God's kingdom, they advanced the kingdom of God's enemy.

 

     By transplanting their reformed brand of false kingdom teaching to a virgin land which had not known the evil of collective society, the Puritans served to give this teaching a new world prominence. The major world focus of false kingdom teaching shifted from Europe to America.  By its prominence, this form of teaching became rooted in Christian thought as it otherwise would not have. To this day, American babylonian government and society have been confused with the kingdom of God in the minds of the Church and the world more than any other nation. Today, the teaching which identifies the United States government as the kingdom of God permeates the thinking of many quarters of American Christianity and is enshrined in that particular doctrine called "Anglo-American Israelism". The greatest manifestation of the continued force of the Puritans' teaching is the slavish involvement of the Church in the political affairs of the United States.

 

     Why were the Puritans so deceived? It is because within their false teaching they possessed the seed of truth that recognizes the intrinsic spiritual nature of the kingdom of God. Most of them had personally entered the first degree of kingdom salvation by grace recovered through the Reformation. To that degree, they truly were (part of) the kingdom of God. But this did not make their collective society Christian nor their church-state government the manifest kingdom of God in the earth.

 

     Perhaps the deep, tragic irony in all this is that the declared purpose for starting this colony was to reach the native Indians with "the Gospel". But in reality, the lifestyle of the loosely knit, roaming Indian tribes was much closer in practice to the way of faith than that of the babylonian "Puritans" who possessed the letter of it.2  The Indians lived after the purest tradition of man before Nimrod. Except for their lack of true spiritual life through Jesus Christ, they were actually a truer model for the kingdom of God in the earth than either Old Israel, the Puritans, or any society in the West called "Christian" over the preceding 1300 years to that time! At the end, instead of converting the Indians to faith in Jesus Christ, the Puritans either destroyed them or absorbed them into their collectivized society.

 

     From this point, our study of false kingdom teaching centres on the United States of America. Because of the initial transplanting of false kingdom teaching to America with the Puritans, and because God's further works of Restoration  centred in His People in America, all the central developments of false kingdom teaching occur in the context of American babylonian society.

 

 

American False Kingdom Teaching and the Holiness-Pentecostal Restoration

 

     Despite the special deceptiveness of the reformed false kingdom teaching and its American prominence, God broke the back of that teaching and, through the ministry of Roger Williams, set the Church free from union with state babylonianism. It was in this context that the American colonies united in 1787 to become the first nation of Roman descent since 323 A.D. to be free from official relationship to the Church.

 

     Contrary to what one would expect, though, this did not destroy the power of false kingdom teaching. Instead, counterfeit teaching retrenched itself to secure the Church's remaining bondage to American economy and society. Once the United States was founded free from official tie to any National Church, it became fairly clear to all but the diehards of puritan spiritual descent that the government of the United States could not possible be the seat of God's kingdom in the world. But if it became obvious that the U.S. Government is not the seat of God's kingdom, it became less obvious that U.S. economy and social community are also not God's kingdom.

 

     After the official relationship of Church and state was broken in America, the political power in the Church passed from the state to the denominations with their synods, conventions, headquarters and hierarchies. With the state no longer in the running, these structures became considered to be the seat of God's kingdom. This was a slightly more accurate lie than that which identified the state as the seat of God's kingdom. It was more accurate because it restored the truth that the kingdom of God is found wholly within the Church. But it was a lie because all these denominational structures were not of the Spirit. They were man-made and man-governed by the same parliamentary procedures as the governments and organizations of the world.

 

     Because the denominations were man-made, their life was not drawn from God but from the Church's remaining relationship with American economy and social community. Since the denominational structures were considered to be the seat of God's kingdom, and since they depended on American society for their life, it became necessary to impute "kingdom status" to the rest of American society as well and commit the Church to its preservation.

 

     This imputing of "kingdom status" to American society and the committing of the Church to its preservation is the essence of the new brand of false kingdom teaching that replaced the more obviously false reformed brand. The new American brand of this teaching is more dangerous than its predecessor because it accomplishes this imputing of "kingdom status" to American society without saying so. This teaching doesn't call America the "kingdom of God". Instead, it euphemistically refers to "America's Christian heritage". But the effect is the same. It unites into one concept the advancing of God's kingdom (ie, the Church with its man-made structures) and the preserving of American babylonian society.

 

     This is the brand of false kingdom teaching that was spawned when the United states was founded and that continues in one form or other to this day. By it, the Church in America has been kept from fulfiling the Great Commission and deluded into a program of "regressive evangelism" whereby, in the name of fulfiling the Great Commission, She devotes Herself to preserving America's babylonian institutions on which She depends for Her life. As the Holiness-Pentecostal Restoration has progressed over the two centuries since America's founding, the good moral side effects that have rubbed off on surrounding babylonian society have served to keep retrenching the lie that American society is Christian and basically "good". In turn, the Church has continued to re-cycle the blessings She receives through Restoration back into the false quest to preserve American society.

 

     One doctrine that articulates this teaching especially well is called the "Cultural Mandate". This teaching charges the Christian with the obligation to permeate every sector of American babylonian society with Christian influence until it can be made righteous. Some forms of this teaching go on to say that, once the Christians have purified all babylonian society, Jesus will be able to return and receive it as an acceptable offering over which to rule!

 

      Especially  since the Holy Spirit began openly manifesting His own political control in the Church at the turn of the century, false kingdom teaching relative to American society has taken on a supernatural life of its own. Men under the anointing of the Spirit for the miraculous now use the miraculous to teach that God will "turn America around". They teach that by the miraculous  He will overcome all America's inherent evils and will usher in a new age of American peace and prosperity culminating in the return of Jesus Christ. (One group has claimed that Jesus will return to a specific hillside in Tennessee while another well-known prophet of this teaching has claimed Jesus will return to Tulsa, Oklahoma!)

 

     In reality, all such diversion of the Spirit's power into supporting the cause of American babylonianism has worked to prepare the Church to eventually unite with other religions of the world who also anticipate a coming age of peace and prosperity. (American Christian political organizations already unite with other religions and cults in the common goal to "save America".) Based on this unified expectation, the Church will be deceived into receiving the miracle-working false messiah who promises to usher in the kingdom of God. The fever pitch to which such teaching is climbing in the Church in America is indeed alarming.

    

 

False Kingdom Teaching and the Transitional Moves Toward Complete Salvation

 

     So far we have looked at false kingdom teaching in specific relationship to United States government and society. But not all false kingdom teaching in the Church in America directly relates to the United States per se. False kingdom teaching occurs anytime the work of God's salvation is redefined in terms of fixed politics, economy, or social community, - within or without the Church, with or without specific regard to U.S. society. Keeping that in mind, we turn to see how two of the earlier cited transitional moves toward complete salvation have been affected by false kingdom teaching.

 

The Faith and Prosperity Movement

 

     The closer a move of God approaches complete salvation from all the works of the world, the greater the stench that arises when that move is subverted,  - the greater the stumblingblock3 when it is counterfeited. This is seen no more clearly than in the subversion of the Faith and Prosperity Movement.

   

     By this movement, God would prepare His People for life outside collective society. He would enable them to call on Him to obtain the minutest physical, material, and financial provisions so they might be able to fulfil the Great Commission. Yet the wolves4  of false kingdom teaching have redirected the message. Instead of teaching the sheep how to use the laws of faith and prosperity to deliver themselves from American society, they teach them how to entrench themselves more deeply in it - building to themselves financial empires featuring cadillacs, mansions, jewelry, and the finest food and clothing.5 This teaching is featured in everything from direct sales companies supposedly based on the "golden rule" to the justification for building America's third largest entertainment centre in the name of "Christian rest and recreation".

 

     Yet what is true of collective population is also true of collected material possession. God abhors it. If it remains collected together, God must scatter it in judgment. As God has willed His People to disperse, so has He willed them to disperse what they have and live by faith through an economy based on giving.6  This alone is true kingdom prosperity. Any teaching however that encourages the collectivization of people or possessions is false kingdom teaching.

 

The Christian Rural Retreat Movement

 

     Here too is a move of God which emits a terrible stench when it is subverted to promote collectivization in the name of fleeing it. God has shown many the need to break their ties of dependence upon American fixed society by moving out into remote, rural areas ahead of the time when God will thrust out all His People. In the meantime however, many of these groups have merely retrenched themselves into their own private brand of fixed society. They have created a mini-babylonian society within the borders of the larger surrounding one. False kingdom prophets have arisen to rule these little babylons through their equally fixed doctrines. They often proclaim their community to be the new and only true manifestation of the kingdom of God in the earth (shades of the Puritans).

 

     One of the worst manifestations of this perversion was the Jonestown commune in South America which culminated in the mass suicide of about 900 people. (This commune was led by a man who began as a preacher of the Pentecostal Gospel.) Other communes have been formed with much purer intentions and guidance from the Lord. Yet they have succumbed to becoming their own fixed societies with closed circles of fellowship, slavish political structures, and peculiar terminologies designed to distinguish them from all other Christians. All such aberrations of this move by God to the wilderness have earned for these moves the name "cult" (a name which is unfortunately meted out without distinction upon even the faithful groups). In their closed fixation of thought, practice, and locale, these cultic Christian groups have given way to warped teachings and strange practices. This is the product of false kingdom teaching.

Assessing the Cumulative Effects of False Kingdom Teaching on the Church in North America

 

     Never has the time been nearer for the Church's salvation from the dead works of collective society. There is virtually nothing more that can be restored to the Church short of this. The Church in North America has recovered all it can of salvation and still remain shackled to American babylonianism.

 

     But at the same time, the Church's lostness in the works of babylonian society through false kingdom teaching has never been greater. The enemy's greatest bondage is always manifest just before the time of salvation, "because he knows his time is short."7  It is darkest just before the dawn.

 

     As we step back to assess this intense darkness, here is what we see:

 

     - We behold a North American Christianity transfixed with its life "at home". We see a Christianity that has failed to enter mobility to fulfil the Great Commission  apart from American society. Instead it is obsessed with its passion for building with brick and mortar.

 

     - We see a Christianity that does not call collective society out of its dead works. Rather, it is dedicated to restoring its society's "democratic" brand of those works because it believes it to be essentially of God. We see a Christianity that uses evangelism as a tool to plug the moral holes in a society that must collapse because it is intrinsically anti-christian. It fights an ever-losing battle against political, moral, economic, and religious corruption. We see a Christianity that through its "regressive evangelism" is drowning in its involvement with the babylonian political, economic, and social community.

 

     - We see a Church equally dependent upon American society for Her survival in that society:

        - dependent on babylonian politics for Her "tax-exempt status" and other laws to preserve the "rights" of Her stone temples and schools;

        - dependent on babylonian economy for Her support, courting the rich, merchandising the Gospel, and pleading for money from Her babylonian donors locked in their "9-5" jobs - jobs which support the drive for globalism;

        -  dependent  upon  the technology of babylonian social community ("the media") for Her cohesiveness through the artificial images of radio, television, satellite, and glossy magazine.

 

     This is the sum and substance of a Christianity in the West that is two parts saved, one part lost, and sealed in that lostness by false kingdom teaching.

 

______________________________

 

References:

1 Rom 6:23  

2 Rom 2:14-19  

3 Mt 23:13 > Rom 2:24        

4 Acts 20:29-30  

5 I Ti 6:5-11  

6 Lk 6:30,38  

7 Rev 12:12


 

11. WHEAT OR CHAFF: WHICH AM I?

 

 

     As bleak as the picture of American Christianity looks, all is not lost. God has not been thwarted from completing His Restoration or from leading His People into the salvation that will enable them to destroy the satanic drive for world control. On the contrary. God has used the darkness as a sieve for sifting His People, separating the true from the professing1 until as with Gideon, He has mustered the army that will go forth to bring salvation to the earth.2  Amidst the noise and confusion, God has preserved to Himself a people who have maintained teachability and stayed close to the Spirit of truth through a pure heart. They have learned from all the works of God's Restoration and have overcome the deceptions surrounding that work so they might enter into His next stage of salvation.

 

     John the Baptist used a metaphor about wheat and chaff to illustrate this sifting process.3 Before wheat is come to maturity for harvest, it is surrounded by chaff and cannot be seen. When harvest is come, the wheat is threshed. The threshing removes the outer chaff to reveal the wheat within. The wheat is saved but the chaff is swept up and burned. 

 

     By analogy, the chaff with the  wheat grain hidden within represents the total body of the professing Church. The wheat pictures those in that body who are the special objects of God's favour and preservation - "the elect".4 They are the objects of God's unfolding Restoration. The chaff pictures those in the body who partake of God's salvation, but yield to self-deceptions, fail to enter into all God would restore, and otherwise become stuck in their salvation. As the wheat persevere in obtaining complete salvation, they become separated out from those who manifest as chaff at some point. The points at which the wheat divide from the chaff are points of "threshing". Let's look more closely at the character sketches of wheat and chaff in the Church.

 

 

The Wheat

 

     The wheat in the Church are those who always continue to move on in their salvation. They do not stop at a point of truth and say, "This is the ultimate revelation."

     The wheat have an unquenchable desire to change and to grow in their salvation. They realize that they have not arrived and that there is always more to learn. Therefore they are not afraid to explore new areas of understanding. Overcoming their fears of the unknown, they trust the Spirit of truth to protect them from straying. They are not kept back by the hearsay and prejudice of others toward other believers. 

     The wheat realize that at the root of every deception is a seed of truth from which they can and must learn. Therefore they do not allow the deceptions surrounding any degree of God's salvation to throw them off track from their quest for Living Truth. They see through the deceptions, taking what is of God, and reject the abuses and excesses grown up as tares alongside the truth.

     At the same time, the wheat do not allow the rejection by others of what truth they already have to become an excuse for abusing it to excess and becoming stuck in it.

     The wheat do not make blanket judgments about ministries and movements. They do not say "This is all of God" or "This is all of the devil". They trust the Spirit to discern for them what is of God and what is not. They do not mock or speak evil of what they do not understand.

      The wheat use God's light to lead them out of what remaining darkness they find in themselves. They use the Scriptures to judge their own unbelief. They focus on applying truth to themselves, not to others.

     If there is one word that describes the wheat, it is "consistency". For the wheat, "consistency" means persistent change toward perfection. They believe that if one begins the Christian quest for salvation by grace,  he can never justify ceasing to overcome all further challenges to dead works and unbelief.

      For the wheat, unity is not measured in terms of their own visible ministry  or by what they visibly see happening in the Church. They measure unity by the common desire to keep pure and to keep changing beyond all visible forms. They realize that "Here we have no continuing city."5

     The wheat do not measure their sense of self-worth by what they understand or by their activity for God, but by Him Who is their Understanding and their Life. For them, truth ultimately rests in their relationship with the Spirit of truth.6

 

 

The Chaff

 

    The chaff in the Church are those who begin the journey of faith but ultimately come to a  resting place in their thinking beyond which they are unwilling to change.7 The chaff declare some point of God's revelation to be the final revelation and reject any further or other form of revelation outside what their understanding is willing to accept.

     The chaff are inconsistent.8 Having begun to change by grace, they yield at some point to reason for holding onto a form of unbelief when confronted by the Spirit of truth.9

     The chaff make blanket judgments about men, ministries, and movements.10  They label a thing "all of God" or "all of the devil". They judge by what they understand and speak evil of what offends their understanding.

     The desire in chaff for change becomes quenched at some point. They become comfortable in their salvation. They come to trust in their understanding and no longer the Spirit of truth. Therefore they fail to overcome further fear of the unknown that they might keep growing. They are held back by the hearsay of others and become spreaders of that hearsay.

     The chaff do not see through deceptions to learn from the truth hidden by them. Therefore they allow the abuse of truth by some to justify their total rejection of it. Meanwhile they allow the rejection by others of truth they have to justify their own abuse of it.

     Because of secret impurity of heart, God's truth becomes to the chaff their stumblingblock and they become stuck in their salvation.11  They interpret the Scriptures by their unbelief. When God's light comes among them, they use it to justify what remaining darkness they find within themselves. They take God's light as a sign of His approval of their darkness.

     Having lost their first  desire to keep changing by faith into Christ's image, the chaff come to rest their sense of identity in some visible manifestation of what God is doing in the Church. This manifestation becomes their standard for defining unity. They seek to enforce unity based on their last stopping point in faith. The chaff come to measure their sense of self-worth by their ministry for God. For them, truth ultimately comes to rest in what they think they understand about how to worship God, or how the Church should meet, or what to believe about some issue. Then they are offended when any of these are shaken by the wheat who press on in their change. Then they become persecutors of the wheat.

 

 

"They Are Not All (New) Israel Which Are of (New) Israel"

 

     Earlier in our study, we asked why God allowed the Restoration of His Church to be staggered over centuries allowing for division and persecution in the very midst of the body itself. Why did He allow a work mixing wheat and chaff? Why did He allow chaff in the first place? Why not just wheat? Why not a pure work from the start? Why the mixture? Why did He allow false kingdom teaching in the midst?

 

     Nature itself teaches us why, for nature is patterned after spiritual reality. When we see wheat, we call it wheat. But it is really chaff and wheat. The outer chaff is not the wheat, but an outward body that hides the true wheat within it. Yet because it is what we see, we still call it "wheat". When we see corn in a field, we call it corn. But it is husk and corn. The outer husk is not the corn, but an outward body that hides the true corn within. Yet we still call it "corn",  for that is what we see.

 

     So it is with the Church. We see "the Church". But what we see is not the true Church. The true Church is hidden within the visible Church. From the time God chose to redeem to Himself a chosen People, He has preserved to Himself a true People hidden within an outward visible body called "His People". But as chaff is not wheat though outwardly we call it wheat, even so "They are not all Israel which are of Israel."12  Neither are they all the Church which are of the Church.

 

     As the profitless chaff serves as a body that protects the true wheat til it ripens, even so the outward body of the Church, seething with division and turmoil by the efforts of many to enforce faith according to this world, serves to protect the faith of the true wheat from becoming corrupted. Listen to the prophetic word of the Lord:

 

     "AS THE BODY OF CHAFF PROTECTS THE WHEAT UNTIL NOURISHED TO MATURITY, SO DOES THE OUTWARD BODY OF MY CHURCH THROUGH UNBELIEF NURTURE THE FAITH OF MY WHEAT IN HER MIDST - TIL MY WHEAT IS RIPENED AND READY TO BE REVEALED AS MY TRUE PEOPLE.

     "THE DESIRE FOR THE VISIBLE UNITY OF MY CHURCH IS BORN IN FAITH BUT ENFORCED IN UNBELIEF. FOR IT IS ENCASED IN THE HUSK OF NATURAL EXPECTATION WHICH SEEKS TO ENFORCE UNITY IN THE NATURAL STRENGTH OF COMMON UNDERSTANDING. AS MY PEOPLE SEEK BY UNBELIEF TO ENFORCE THEIR PRESENT MANIFESTATION, THEY CREATE DIVISION. AGAINST THE TURMOIL, THE FAITH IN MY HIDDEN WHEAT IS EXERCISED. THEY LEARN THAT TRUE UNITY IS OF THE SPIRIT AND CANNOT BE OUTWARDLY ENFORCED. IT CAN ONLY BE PRESERVED FROM WITHIN AS THEY FOCUS ON ME, NOT IT. WHEN THEY TRY TO ENFORCE IT, IT DISINTEGRATES IN THEIR HAND. LEARNING BY THE CHAOS, THE FAITH IN MY WHEAT IS PERFECTED. THEY STAY CLOSE TO ME AND NOT THEIR IDEAS ABOUT MY KINGDOM. THEY ARE MATURED AND RIPENED INTO THEIR COMING MANIFESTATION AS MY TRUE CHURCH WHEN I TAKE THE CHAFF AWAY AT MY COMING.13 FOR IN THAT DAY THEIR FAITH WILL HAVE MADE THEM EQUAL TO THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THEIR MANIFESTING. THEY WILL BE ABLE TO STAND VISIBLY BEYOND DANGER OF CORRUPTION.

     "YOU SEE THEREFORE, MY PEOPLE, WHY I COULD NOT RESTORE YOU IN A SINGLE GENERATION. NOT ONLY WAS IT MY JUDGMENT UPON YOU FOR YOUR FIRST INFIDELITY, BUT THERE WAS TOO MUCH TO BE RECOVERED. I TOLD ISRAEL I COULD ONLY DELIVER THE LAND TO THEM GRADUALLY AS THEY BECAME EQUAL TO THE ABILITY TO STEWARD IT RIGHTLY.14 LIKEWISE I COULD NOT RESTORE TO YOU YOUR COMPLETE SALVATION AT ONCE.

     "BY LEAVING UNBELIEF IN YOUR MIDST, I GAVE MY WHEAT THAT AGAINST WHICH TO EXERCISE THEIR FAITH SO THEY MIGHT PRESS INTO THAT WHICH WAS NEXT AND NOT BECOME SATISFIED. BUT WHERE NO FRICTION IS, THERE CAN BE NO MOTION. AND WHERE THERE IS NO CHAFF, TRUE WHEAT CANNOT BE NURTURED, FOR IT COULD NEVER WITHSTAND THE ELEMENTS. THEREFORE I SAID TO YOU IT MUST BE THAT DIVISIONS COME, YET WOE TO THEM BY WHOM THEY COME.15 IN THE PROVING GROUND OF MY VISIBLE CHURCH, THE EXPERIENCES OF MY WHEAT OVER STRIFE THROUGH  UNBELIEF VACCINATE THEM AGAINST THE WORLD'S UNBELIEF - AGAINST WHICH THEY COULD NEVER OTHERWISE STAND NOR GROW TO FINALLY OVERCOME."

 

     We see by this that the visible Church is not God's true work. It only hides it. The visible Church, seething with corruption and division, has been for the protecting of the Lord's true Church. The hiding of the identity of the true Church is for Her own protection. To this day it is a classified secret. For it is as the People of God have thought themselves to be THE manifest People of God that they have become corrupted. That such corruption could occur is why it was allowed to occur, that the true hidden People might learn by the folly and be preserved.

 

     This is the mystery of disguised blessing behind the ages- long subjection of the visible People of God to perpetual chaos, turmoil, and division. It is a lesson of nature. It is a mystery hard to be perceived. He that has ears to hear, let him hear.16

 

     We have said all these things to say that, despite the apparently desperate state of the visible Church in North America, God has not been thwarted by the manifold deceptions of false kingdom teaching throughout the body. Only those who have allowed themselves to become as chaff have been deceived. The hidden wheat have continued on, faithfully advancing their salvation out of every form of dead works. They have been protected from unbelief by the chaos caused by unbelief. Because they have learned from the unbelief  of  the  surrounding  chaff,  their hearts are not fixed in their understandings of God's ways. Therefore they will not be stuck as the next great phase of Restoration dawns to free God's People from babylonianism.

 

     No. It is not to lament therefore the pitiful state of the visible Church. It is rather to know for certain where one stands in his heart: In the kernel? Or in the husk?

 

 

"Make Your Calling and Election Sure"

 

     At this point I turn to you, Relative in Christ, to say: Now is the time to step back and take stock of yourself spiritually before the full threshing occurs and God's next stage of salvation is revealed. Now is the time to determine whether you are wheat or chaff with respect to the coming salvation. Now is the time to make your calling and election sure.17

 

     You claim to be a "believer" in Jesus Christ? Well and good. The demons also believe - and tremble.18  If your participation in the various stages of God's salvation has ceased to lead you into ever-increasing conflict with fixed society and with those in the professing Church still married to it, then you may know that your faith has died. You are chaff to be burned at the time of threshing.

 

     God's salvation has many phases and levels, levels of wheat and chaff, levels of threshing, and levels of burning. That which is wheat with respect to one degree of salvation may be chaff with respect to the next degree through unbelief. You may have been wheat concerning salvation from sin's penalty, "accepting Christ" as your saviour. You may have even been wheat concerning salvation from the works of the flesh, pressing on into the baptism of the Spirit and of fire. But if your faith in Jesus Christ has ceased to gear you for participation in the coming last confrontation between the Church and babylonianism, then it has become vain. You will not enter into God's last salvation for the Church. Instead, you will hinder those that would and you yourself will be burned as chaff by the lie of false kingdom teaching in your right hand.19

 

     Perhaps you ask, "How may I know if I am wheat or chaff?" I will show you.

     Simply ask yourself, "What phase of God's already restored salvation have I refused to enter?"

     "To what revival of God's truth past or present have I become exclusively devoted at the expense of my pressing on into ALL His truth?"

     "With what group of believers rooted in fixed society have I become exclusively identified and settled? "

     "What other group of believers have I derided for their excesses as an excuse for my unwillingness to enter into the truth they have?"

     "What truth held by other believers have I attributed to the `work of the devil'20  simply because I don't understand it21 or because they have rejected truth I have?"

     "Concerning what truth of God have I stopped my ears22 and pointed my finger at the faults of those who hold it to justify my unteachableness?"

 

     Your answers to these questions will determine whether you are wheat or chaff concerning God's next salvation. They will determine whether you will move on into the salvation from the kingdoms of this world, or whether you will persecute those who do and die at the hands of your favorite brand of false kingdom teaching.

     If you count your spiritual descent from the Reformation or Anabaptists, have you rejected the message of a deeper holiness because it offends your understanding and exposes your dead works?

     If you count your descent from the message of a deeper holiness, have you rejected the charismatic side to the "baptism of the Holy Spirit" because it offends the unbelief of your carnal mind? Or have you rejected the sovereign grace message of the Reformation because it has rejected you?

     If you count your descent from the latest works of the Holy Spirit's renewals in faith, deliverance, and healing, have you rejected the faith of the Reformation with its foundational message of judgment, and the sovereignty and fear of the Lord? Or have you rejected the deeper life of self-denial which you so badly need and for lack of which your excesses are blasphemed by the rest of the Church?23

 

     If your answer to any of these or similar questions is "yes", then you may surely know that you are chaff. You will be burned at the revelation of God's next salvation.

 

     Fixation of faith, thought, and the fixation of collective society go together. If you have settled into a fixed faith rooted in a group of believers rooted in a collective society, there is no way you will heed the final call for flight from Babylon. Your settledness of faith has sealed your love for babylonian society. You will not be saved from the works of this "untoward generation"24  but will go down with them. The society you claim to be salting with your fixed faith and regressive evangelism will salt you (Remember Lot's wife).25  When the final call is issued, your kingdom lie will have trapped you and you will be unable to flee. It will be too late. You will not overcome26 in the coming last war between the Church and global society. You will be overcome. You will not secure yourself a place of rulership with Jesus at the inauguration of His true kingdom on earth.

 

     Yes. This is how you may know whether you are wheat or chaff. But it is not too late. God's final salvation has not yet broken in fully upon the Church. Now is the time to do something about what chaff remains to you. Now is the time to swallow your religious pride and prejudices. Now is the time to fill in the missing gaps in your salvation. If you don't find salvation now from all the dead works for which salvation has already been restored, do you think you will find it from the works of fixed society waiting to be revealed?27

 

______________________________

References:

1 Mt 13:47-50  

2 Jg 7:1-8  

3 Mt 3:12  

4 Rom 11:5  

5 Heb 13:14  

6 Jn 16:13  

7 Jn 8:31 > Heb 10:38   

8 Jms 1:8       

9 Gal 3:3      

10 Jn 7:24; 8:15  

11 Rom 9:32; 11:7-10   

12 Rom 9:6  (II Ti 2:19)  

13 Mal 3:1-5; 4:1-3  

14 Ex 23:29-30  

15 Mt 18:7 (I Cor 11:18-19)  

16 Mt 13:9  

17 II Pt 1:10-11  

18 Jms 2:19    

19 Is 44:20  

20 Mt 12:24  

21 II Pt 2:12  

22 Acts 7:57  

23 Rom 2:24  

24 Acts 2:40  

25 (Mt 5:13 >) Gen 19:26;Lk 17:32    

26 Rev 3:21  

27 Lk 8:18; 16:10  Jn 3:12


 

12. WHILE THE CHURCH SLEPT

 

 

     In our pre-occupation with studying the Church's 470 year Restoration and Her internal ills through false kingdom teaching, we have temporarily lost sight of the progress of satan's drive for world collectivization. It is time to go back and see what has happened while the Church has slept in Babylon's arms.

 

     Despite the Restoring of the Church since 1517, progress toward complete human globalization has continued unabated. Where possible, Satan has recouped the losses he has suffered due to the Church's re-awakening. Through false kingdom teaching, he has led the Church to unwittingly reinvest Her restoring life back into the process of collectivization while letting Her believe She has been fighting that process. Through the strategy of redefining God's kingdom in babylonian terms, he has harnessed his deadliest source of opposition into his most valuable resource. Without Her knowledge, the Restoring Church has been made the number one energy supply for sustaining the globalist quest.

 

     Before tracing the course of this reality in history, we need to understand the nature of satanic administration. Satan is not a creator. He is not an originator. To advance his ends he must copy and counterfeit what God has first made.1  In the case at hand, the satanic kingdom and quest for globalization are imitations of God's kingdom. Similarly, false kingdom teaching is a corruption of the true Gospel of the Kingdom.

 

     Not only is satan not an originator. He also has no life in himself to sustain his works. For this he must siphon off and redirect the LIFE of God to energize his purposes. The restoring life of the Church of Jesus Christ is just such a ready source. The more satan has been able to divert this life, the more he has been able to accelerate the pace toward globalization. His successful diversion of the Church's restoring life back into Euro-American babylonianism over the last 470 years accounts for the dramatic parallel acceleration toward globalization since 1517. Let's look at the details.

 

 

European Colonization

 

     Wherever the LIFE of God is restored to His People, it brings peripheral blessing to the surrounding unbelieving world in terms of increased natural prosperity and individual liberty. Scripture abounds with examples and types of this. The presence of Jacob brought blessing to Laban.2 The presence of Joseph brought blessing to the Egyptians.3 The presence of the Ark brought blessing to the house of Obed-Edom.4 Similarly, as the Church has been restoring, Her life has brought marginal blessing to those nations that have served as the host sites for Restoration.

 

     This reality, however, has proved fatal to the emerging Church. As the surrounding collective societies began benefiting from the side-effects of the Church's Restoration, false kingdom teaching led the Church to impute a measure of "righteousness" to these societies (though that "righteousness" was only a reflection of the Church's true inward righteousness.) In turn, the Church was led into actively investing Her life directly back into these societies, preventing Her from ever leaving Her confines to fulfil the Great Commission.

 

     This is precisely what happened in Europe through the Reformation. As the Reformation dawned, European nations began tasting of the marginal blessings in their societies. Social reforms occurred. The Church took the improvements as evidence of some intrinsic righteousness in the societies themselves and began pouring Her life into preserving these societies instead of dismantling them.

 

     As a result, this diverted life became the power source for exporting European collective society around the world. The nations of Europe, backed by the life of their state churches, began colonizing the world. They began settling uninhabited areas and converting much looser confederations of native peoples over to European brands of collective government, economy, and culture. (This was called "civilization".)

 

     The European drive for colonization actually preceded the Reformation by about thirty years. The Romanized nations of Spain and Portugal, backed by the "Church", began colonizing South and Central America. Eventually, most of the nations of Europe entered the race for colonization - Italy, France, Holland, Germany.

 

      By the turn of 1600 however, the torch of naval power passed to a nation invaded by the life of the Reformation - Great Britain. Great Britain came to be the nation most blessed as a result of the Reformation, and at once the greatest world empire builder in Nimrod's image. Truly, the sun of Constantine never set on the British Empire.

 

     In the 400 years between the Reformation and World War I, European babylonian society was carried to every corner of the world. At the heart of that spread was the state church. Supported by the diverted life of the restoring Gospel, satan made tremendous strides toward fulfiling his own "great commission".5

 

 

The American Empire

 

     Not only is satan an imitator, and not only must he draw upon the diverted LIFE of God to sustain his purpose, but satan follows behind the work of God as closely as possible. Wherever God is, there satan seeks to be. Wherever God plants His work, there satan plants his.6  In Scripture we see satan aspiring to set his throne where the throne of God is.7 In the New Testament, we see satan dogging the steps of Paul in Philippi through a divining sorceress.8  It comes as no surprise then that when God shifted the site for the Church's Restoration to North America after the Reformation, thereto satan moved his command centre for directing the drive for collectivization.

 

     The crowning achievement of satan's strategy came in America when he succeeded at harnessing the life of the Church to a cart of collective society which the Church Herself built from scratch. If a horse could design his own cart to pull, surely such a cart would be so perfectly suited to him as to be able to be pulled further than any  cart designed by a man. This analogy precisely describes what happened in America between the Church and babylonianism.

 

     Unlike the Church in Europe, the Church in America had placed before Her the opportunity to build Her own brand of collective society. This apple had no worms, but was still from the forbidden tree. The proposed society would possess more qualities of the true kingdom of God than any other before it. Yet it would still be a collective society.  

 

     Because this society would be specially designed to run on the diverted life of the Church, it would be able to spread the gospel of collectivization further than any society before it. Why, the sheer genius of it was that it would not look like a collective society at all. Because the Church was building it, it would be free "up front" from the more ugly elements of all preceding collective societies - the repression, the torture, the totalitarian elements. It would look so good in fact that men would think it could endure forever. Therefore they would worship it as God - not by force (as in the past), but by choice! So it was that satan carefully seduced the Church in America into conceiving the first ever "Made in Heaven" brand of collective babylonian society.

 

      In 1787, after a bloody seven year war to sever its umbilical cord from England, the newborn society set sail on the sea of humanity. A new image of Nimrod was raised in the earth which had never before been seen. This image wore a smile rather than a frown. It had all the looks of a lamb though it spoke like a dragon.9  The new image not merely reflected the blessings of the Restoring Church but enshrined them - values such as the freedom and worth of the individual, the right to the pursuit of life, liberty, and happiness. On that day, the Church breathed Her life into this new image of Nimrod that looked more like Jesus - and the world worshipped. Its name?

The Constitution of the United States of America.

 

     The new American form of collective society (called Republican Democracy) became the envy of all the world. Its believers and political disciples became dedicated to spreading it over land and sea. Where the more overtly hostile forms of babylonian society had failed, lamb-like American society succeeded. What the devil could not win by force, he won by seduction.

 

     The spread of American babylonianism was accomplished through a strange combination of factors. On one hand it was serviced by the proponents of the true Kingdom Gospel (ie, missionaries) who went out to other lands. But it was also serviced by world trade and the greed for gain. Then again it was serviced by two world wars in the name of freedom, democracy, and all the borrowed values from God's salvation for which it claimed to stand. In any case, so successful was American-style collective society that by the mid 20th century, not one parcel of land on earth remained free from the jurisdiction of some babylonian society.

 

     The secret to the success of American collectivization was and is the Church. Similarly to Europe, the Church imputed Her righteousness to American mankind which partook of Her blessings. But beyond the example of Europe, She actually created the  republican-democratic framework for the American society and then turned to impute Her righteousness to it as well. The new form of government became adored as God. Together, American government and society quickly upstaged the true Gospel as "the last best hope for man on earth " - not only in the world's eyes, but in the eyes of God's own People!

 

     The Church continued breathing Her life into this new image of Her making. At home, the Church entrenched Herself into slavish devotion to preserving American babylonianism (as we already studied.) Abroad, American missionaries of the Church went out over the globe carrying the mixed message of salvation by grace and salvation by the "American Dream". Instead of leading the world out of their own babylonian societies, American missionaries diverted their spiritual life into converting the peoples of the earth to American brand babylonianism through "democracy". They transplanted American fixed economy and culture everywhere they went.

 

     Over the generations since America was founded, however, the facade of "Christian society" and benign collectivism has begun peeling. The true hidden satanic nature behind American collectivism has begun to wear through within and without.10 Internally, what was once incontestably considered to be a "Christian society" has given way to a spirit of secularization and creeping socialism supported by the doctrines of  secular humanism. America has become invaded by third-world religions and occult phenomena under the intangible umbrella called the "New Age" movement. This movement is finding sustenance by the redirected life of the Charismatic Renewal under the gospel of "Positive Thinking".11  The nation has now become home to every unclean bird and hateful thing.12

 

     Externally, America - which once appeared to be the world protector of the rights of the individual - has become the clear hand-in-glove partner with World Communism in preparing the way for marxist-style collectivization of the third world (Southeast Asia, Africa, and Central America). As satan's hidden world seat for promoting global government, the United States has directly or indirectly spawned all the forces of the last three centuries toward complete globalization. Today, behind its benign image of "democracy", the United States is home to numerous secret political organizations, commercial institutions, and religious orders dedicated to achieving world government and who wield the true power behind the governments of the world. The U.S. dollar has become the recognized standard medium of exchange for world trade. Meanwhile, English has become the world language of diplomacy and commerce, overcoming the language barrier imposed by God on Nimrod's first society.

 

     Thanks to the "American Dream" and its work-horse, the Church, never has the world been nearer to its ultimate goal.

 

 

The Soviet Empire

 

     The lie behind the false image of American Babylonianism could not be hid forever. The truth that American society and republican-democracy were subject to the same evils of all collective society had to come out. But when the truth came out, it was bound to produce a reaction of deepest revulsion in those who saw through the facade. For behind the facade of freedom was the story of another kind of slavery and moral evil. This was the story of exploitation of the poor by the rich,13 and the moral evils of greed, corruption, and vice that followed the American capitalism wherever it went. As well, the slaughter of Indians14 and the enslavement of blacks15  also cried out from behind the image of the American Dream.

 

     In the mid-19th century, a number of Europeans revolted against the "Euro-American Gospel". Their doctrine of revolt wrought chaos throughout Europe. With their revolt was a vision of a "pure" world babylonian empire free from the injustices of the unregulated quest for wealth, free from the moral vices and decadence of Euro-American babylonianism. The new empire they envisioned would be free from all vestiges of God and Church which (as they saw it) were responsible for corrupt western babylonianism.

 

     In 1917, with the help of hidden forces of globalization seated in America and Europe, the empire of World Communism was planted in Russia. Contrasted to the covertness of benign western babylonianism, the new Soviet brand carried no hidden agenda. Its announced intention from the start was and remains the establishment of atheistic, totalitarian collectivization of the world through class struggle and military revolution.16 The specific aim of the Soviet empire has been the ultimate encirclement and annihilation of the "false" babylonianism of America.

 

     Today [ed. - 1987], World Communism is the greatest overt force for complete globalization ever known to man. Under its oppressions and tortures, the Church in the East has suffered miserably.17  At the same time however, the eastern Church has entered a much greater measure of salvation from the works of the world. Many are those who will rise from the ranks of the eastern Church to overcome the final global beast at the last battle and reign with Jesus at His return.

 

 

The Coming Merger

 

     What has appeared a mystery is how the atheistic Soviet Empire - so contrary to natural law that its system cannot feed its own people - has managed to directly or indirectly control nearly half the world in its short 70 year history.The answer is that the Soviet Empire has been secretly and not so secretly supplied throughout its lifespan by the hidden powers behind the benign American Empire.

 

     But why would the American Empire supply its life to support an empire that has avowed to destroy it? It is because the true forces behind American babylonianism have never favoured the useful facade of republican-democracy. Their only goal has ever been world collectivization. When it was ripe for them to birth and nurture through American life an empire dedicated to a collectivization that more truly reflected the satanic nature, they did so. And when in their eyes the facade of republican-democracy has outlived its usefulness, they will abandon it altogether.

 

     It is no irony therefore that the empire of world communism has always been sustained by the life of the empire it has vowed to destroy. The father of world collectivization is author of them both. From his hidden seat in America, the spirit of Nimrod has cleverly used the diverted life of one empire to sustain the other. Through their apparent antagonism he has used them as a giant pincer movement. He has used the fear of one to drive men into the arms of the other until all men have been taken captive by one or the other. The crowning of the satanic strategy will be the mergence of these two great world empires into a coalition that will complete the drive for globalization.

 

     The irony is not that Soviet and American babylonianism are headed for merger despite their enmity or that they are directed by the same force seated in America. The irony is that THE LIFE-SUPPORT SYSTEM FOR BOTH THESE EMPIRES (AND HENCE FOR THE ENTIRE WORLD DRIVE FOR COLLECTIVIZATION) IS THE DIVERTED LIFE OF THE RESTORING CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST IN AMERICA. 

 

     Does that sound preposterous? Consider well. The Soviet Empire has no life but what is diverted from the American Empire and the American Empire has no life but what is diverted from the Restoring Church. This makes the Church the source and supplier of life for all world collectivization!

 

     But the tragic irony does not stop there. For in Her fear of World Communism, the Church does not see Her evil and divest Herself of Her babylonian ties. Instead, She redoubles Her support for the American Empire she created, feeding all the more the Soviet Empire She hates. Through Her deceived false kingdom teaching, the Church pours Her life into the frankenstonian monster She indirectly created and now dreads, tightening the noose ever more tightly about Her own neck.18

 

     Many are there in the Church in America who see the evil of World Communism. Many are there who even see through to the powers in America behind the push for globalism: the world banks, the elite political "think-tanks", the secret religious orders. So what does the Church do? She fights all the harder to sustain the false image of American babylonianism. She works to "purify" republican-democracy. She works to "restore" the U.S. Constitution which counterfeits Her Gospel. She strives to "bring America back" to her "Christian heritage". The Church writes letters to Her babylonian congressmen and presidents. She creates political-action committees. The Church writes books and newsletters to "expose" the works of the elite internationalist organizations and secret societies. The Church even enters into coalitions with avowed enemies of the basic Gospel She preaches to try to "save America".19

 

     All to no avail. And why? It is because the Church does not recognize that ALL  collective society has one source; and that to support it in its lamb-like American form is to support it in its dragon-like Soviet form; and that to pour life into any of its forms is to advance the cause of globalism.

 

     Thus, in the greatest coup d'etat ever staged in earth, the Restoring Church in Euro-America has been made the work horse for the process She was recommissioned to destroy. It was this reality Paul had in view when he spoke of the "mystery of iniquity" which would ultimately prepare the way for the man of sin, the last Nimrod.20

 

     What is the true solution? What will stop the internationalist conspiracy? What will bring down World Communism and ALL babylonianism? There is but one manifold answer:

     - It is for the Church to cease pouring Her life back into preserving American babylonianism and thereby cut off the energy supply for satan's drive;

     - It is for the Church to get out of Babylon, to "come out from among her and be ye separate"21 and go fulfil the Great Commission.

     - It is for the Church to become saved from the dead works of human economy and social community.

 

______________________________

References:

1 Jn 8:44  

2 Gen 30:27  

3 Gen 39:1-6,21-23  

4 II Sam 6:11-12  

5 (Hab 1:14-17; 2:5)  

6 Mt 13:24-30,37-43        

7 Is 14:13-14       

8 Acts 16:16-18  

9 Rev 13:11-14  

1O Is 26:10  

11 Is 2:6  Ezk 8:16-18  

12 Rev 18:2  

13 Jms 5:4  

14 Hab 1:7    

15 Rev 18:13    

16 Rev 6:4  Dan 7:5  (Jer 34:8-22)  

17 Rev 2:8-11; 6:9-11; 7:14  12:11; 20:4  

18 Is 10:20  

19 Is 30:1-5; 31:1-3  Jer 37:6-10  Ezk 16:29  Hos 5:13; 7:8-11; 8:9-10; 12:1   

2O II Thess 2:6-10  

21 II Cor 6:17-18 


 

13. THE COMING SALVATION FROM THE WORKS OF

COLLECTIVE SOCIETY, AND THE CLIMAX OF HISTORY

 

 

     But what must God do to save His People from their sins? The answer is He must judge their sins. The pattern for this judgment is the very first pattern we saw at the beginning.

 

 

Pattern for Judgment Revisited

 

     At the beginning we saw that it is God's will for mankind to remain dispersed over the face of the earth. When man refused to remain dispersed, God executed judgment upon his society and SCATTERED man Himself.1  This initiated the pattern of judgment by scattering, a judgment that has befallen every world empire to the present. (The destruction of American and Soviet collectivism remains on the horizon.)2

 

     A new twist was incorporated into this judgment when Old Israel became the first called-out People of God to revert back to babylonian society. Because they became collective, they became subject to the same judgment as the world. But because they had been first called-out, God ordained that the judgment of His People should come first,3  and that it should come from the very societies they had stooped to emulate. To this day, when the called-out People of God have become settled "like the nations", He has ordained their dispersal by those nations.4

 

     Old Israel was judged and scattered by Assyria and Babylon.5 Likewise, the New Israel of God's Restoring Church will be judged and dispersed by the very babylonian societies She created. Because the Church failed to disperse to fulfil the Great Commission,6  He will use the Daughter of Babylon She conceived to force Her to.

 

     But there is a mystery to be seen here. For in the brilliance of God's inscrutable wisdom, the coming judgment by scattering of the American Church will at one and the same time be the means of the salvation of His truest People from the works of fixed society. The judgment of His People's sins will turn to the salvation of His People from their sins.7

 

     For whom will the coming scattering be judgment and for whom will it be salvation? Ah! We have already answered that. For the coming judgment by scattering is also the threshing process we described which will separate the wheat from the chaff in the Church.8  For the chaff, the coming scattering will be judgment. For the wheat however, the coming scattering will be their salvation from Egypt!

 

     Yes, dear Relative. The judgment to scatter the Church, the threshing to separate wheat from chaff in the body and in each man, the salvation from the dead works of collective society - these are all the one and same event. And when it appears, it will remove the 2,000 year veil of confusion concerning the identity of the True Church of Jesus Christ in the earth.9 So will the kingdom of Jesus Christ appear and the authority of the manifested sons of God.

 

 

The Consummation of Globalism and the Last Nimrod

 

     The merger of the two goliath world empires, West and East, continues on course. Steered by the hidden occultic forces behind the veil of the Romanized Church, and propelled by the redirected life of the Restoring Church, its progress continues unimpeded.

 

     At the pivotal moment in the merging process, the man for whom all history has waited shall step forward on the world stage to bring it to completion.10 Rising from the hidden seat of globalism in America,11  he will be the incarnate fulfilment of the lamb who speaks like a dragon, leading the world into submission to the world beast of sovietized society.12 Becoming all things to all men, he will accomplish the miraculous accord13 among the nations that promises (for a time) to establish the next millennium of peace and safety14  on earth. He will fulfil their image of the coming messiah. He will establish himself through the achievement of a number of incredible false miracles.15  Consider:

     - He will apparently abolish the enmity between the two great babylonian empires, making of twain one new empire.16 With the horns of a lamb and the voice of a dragon, he will lead the "free world" into accord with the Soviet Bloc, appearing to usher in the era when the lamb and lion may lie down together in peace.

     - He will bring to complete establishment the long-awaited resurrection17  of the Holy Roman Empire extended to include America and Asia. He will be hailed as the successor to the Roman Caesars, uniting east and west, north and south. Not only will Washington be joined to Moscow, but Rome will be joined to Berlin. In special significance after the tradition of Otto the Great, he will bring to union the two Germanies at Berlin with the words, "Ich bin ein Berliner!" [*ed. -- see note at end of this section] In short, he will reconcile all the world's political and economic systems into a cooperative socialistic unit.

     - Behind the veil of the world-wide Roman Church system, and under the corresponding umbrella of the New Age Movement,18 the man of sin will bring false kingdom teaching to its zenith of deceptive perfection.19  In Jesus' name (and that of all other gods), he will work the false miracle of conciliating all the world religions. He will be received as the "Messiah" by all who have looked for the kingdom of God to appear on earth in the form of fixed babylonian society - including many in the Restoring Church in America.20

     - Above all, he will cap his false miracles by working the final peace accord between world babylonianism and world Zionism seated in Jerusalem. He will settle the age long "Jewish Question". He will complete the development of the babylonian Jewish state inaugurated in 1948. Completing its merger with America (under whose wing it has been nourished by the diverted life of the Church there) he will establish a new temple for babylonian Judaism21 and will act to move his world capital to Jerusalem.22  For this, and for appearing to resolve enmity between Arab and Jew, world Judaism too will receive this man as the long awaited "Messiah" - even by the children of those who said, "We have no king but Caesar."23  He will crown his blasphemy by sitting in the temple - both the temple of old babylonian Judaism, and the temple of new babylonian Christianity - and declare himself to be God.24

 

     Thus will the last King of Babylon arise to complete the drive for world collectivization begun under his ancestor Nimrod. For a brief period it will seem that the satanic drive succeeded after all, and that the strategy of God to overcome it failed. The body of the Church will lie dead and buried for "3 days" under the crushing foot of this last empire.

 

 

Death That Produces Life, Persecution That Produces Salvation

 

     In spite of the peace that the false messiah will work among the religious and political babylonian societies of the earth, he will yet be up against one remaining enemy. He will be challenged by all those of the True Church who deny that the kingdom of God is a kingdom like unto the nations.

 

     All who declare this will be a threat to the entire world babylonian order the false messiah seeks to establish. For this, the full weight of world babylonianism will turn to stamp out the Restoring Church.25 The beast of western society will particularly turn on the partially Restored Church who has ridden it all the centuries of Her Restoration. Thus will drop upon the Church (especially the American Church) the sword of judgment, scattering, threshing, and salvation.26

 

     What is that sword? The false messiah will require the renunciation of allegiances by all mankind to any other kingdom but that of world babylonianism. Fulfilling a precedent by the earlier babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar, he will require the entire world to worship before his image of collectivized society under his headship.27  Whoever speaks in terms of a kingdom of God must do so in terms of the new empire with himself as the deity by whatever name - Jesus, Buddha, Mohammed, etc.28  Any man who refuses to conform his definition of God's kingdom to the new world order will be barred from participation in the world economy and exterminated.29  The preaching of Jesus Christ in terms of a spiritual kingdom outside reference to the false messiah will be a specially grave capital offense.30

 

     So it is that the sword of judgment which begins at the house of God will be dropped by none other than the man of sin, fulfiling the everlasting pattern. The body of the Restoring Church will be cast into the fiery furnace of world tribulation. As the sword drops and the fire issues forth, the identity of the True Church within the Church will appear with drastic swiftness. The wheat will be separated from the chaff. Those who are wheat with chaff remaining will see it burned away. Those who are completely chaff will not be able to stand.

 

     For those who are completely chaff, who have clung to the Restoring Church but have never known true LIFE, the sword of persecution will at first be no problem. They will have no qualms in supporting the new world church and hailing the new "messiah".31 Moreover they will be happy to help in the persecution of the "fanatics".32  They will have no conscience about turning former pastors and brethren over to the authorities. Their burning will come later when the beast government actually turns to destroy the world church.33

 

     The persecution will also be no problem for those in the bosom of the Restoring Church who, despite the surrounding Church's harlotry with Euro-American society, pressed on to obtain their salvation from the works of the world while the Church mocked. For these who persevered to outgrow their own chaff and maintain their identity as wheat,34 the persecution will not be pleasant, but it will be no problem.35  After all, it is difficult to confiscate the possessions of those who own nothing. It is difficult to uproot from their homes those who have no certain dwellingplace. It is difficult to kill those who have already covenanted their life over to God by sacrifice.36

 

     No. For the wheat, the sword of tribulation and the furnace of affliction will be their salvation. They will be officially liberated from the works of Babylon they detested all along. In their liberation37 they will go to the ends of the earth to fulfil the Great Commission in power and anointing.38 Their threshing will be their flight from Egypt. Under the protection39 of their God they will fly with eagle's wings into the wildernesses40  of the earth where God will nourish them three and one half years. There they shall abide til their harvest41  be come and the calamity be overpassed.42

 

     But to the mixed partly-saved multitude in the Church, the sword of threshing will produce incredible consternation. Because of the remaining chaff in their lives, they will be put to great anguish. All those in the professing Church from Rome to Tulsa will be faced with the most trouble-fraught decision of their lives. As they are forced to cede their brick-and-mortar temples over to the world church, will they face up to their false kingdom teaching at last, or will they talk themselves into receiving the mark of the New Age Jesus and his beast?

 

     For some, the pain of being forced to flee their "Made in U.S.A." ministries with their cushy salaries will be too great to overcome. These are they who spent their lives trying to preserve the American "kingdom of God". They will be unable to bring themselves to admit that they devoted their lives to a false cause and are responsible for ushering in the world empire they claimed to be fighting.They will justify compromise with the new order. Some in their agony will commit suicide.

 

     In that day, the strangest religious bedfellows will be found together supporting the new "kingdom" - Roman Catholics, conservative Charismatics, Evangelicals, and Fundamentalists. Those American babylonian ministers who most assuredly swore they would never support the new order and who condemned the Roman Church for bringing it to pass will find themselves bowing down to the new image. The sword of threshing will cut across every false visible line presently used to discern the "faithful" from the "apostates". Because of their chaff through their worship of the American Dream, they will fall away like flies from every fixed denomination and assembly to worship the new system.

 

     Others, however, will find the grace to repent and flee - but only at great sacrifice. To stay true they will be forced to give up their houses and lands, jobs and community ties, families and friends. These will move on into final salvation when the threshing hits. They will realize late, but not too late, that they spent their lives on a false cause. They will confess their sins of supporting American babylonianism and bringing about the new order they claimed to abhor. The greater the fixation of their ministry in society, the greater the loss they will suffer as they leave behind financial empires and stone temples. But they will be saved43 - so as by fire, even as Lot.44 They will not take the mark. They will be revealed together with the true scattered Church.

 

     Overnight, the world leadership of the completely Restored Church will pass from the well-known American Church leaders with their glossy media-based ministries. It will pass to the obscure wheat who moved on faithfully, silently behind the stage of American "bread and circuses" Christianity.45 It is these who like Moses have been prepared by God, "outside the camp" in their private wildernesses, to lead the totally Restored Church through its "3 day graveyard shift".46

 

 

The Overthrow of the World Empire and the Return of Jesus Christ

 

     The Church's desolation47  under the last king of Babylon will rage three and one half years.48 But in the consummating revelation of God's inscrutable wisdom, what the world meant for the Church's destruction God has ordained to the Church's completed salvation. Through their salvation, God has in turn ordained the final overthrow of world babylonianism and the return of Jesus Christ.

 

     In attacking the Church through whose diverted life he built his empire, satan will cut off the only life support system for his empire. At the same time, his attack on the Church will raise the Church's life to a new level that can no longer be diverted. By that undivertable life, the completely Restored Church will rise to destroy satan's now starving empire.49  The judgment that began at the house of God will eventuate in the judgment that ends the house of satan. The heel satan bruised will rise to destroy his head.50

 

     As Daniel's three friends were thrown into the furnace,51  so in that day of fiery trial will God's People enter into their three-fold perfection.52 Through their intense undivertable intercession, they will succeed in breaking the back of babylonianism.53  In their scattering, they will take the complete three-fold Kingdom Gospel to the ends of the earth, fulfiling the Great Commission at last.54  There, by the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony55 they will undermine the satanic hierarchy over every city, producing its downfall. By the end of their "shift", they will have ripened enough to be harvested into the clouds56 by Him who has the sharp sickle.57 Their enemies will look on in amazement.58

 

     As soon as they leave, the force of their intercessions against the world system will be unleashed. The great winepress judgment of God will begin.59  Devoid of further life upon which to draw, the world coalition of the man of sin will quickly disintegrate.60 The antagonistic babylonian empires will degenerate to destroy one another.61  The harlot babylonian empire in the west will be utterly burned with nuclear fire by the communistic empire in the east.62  Together, all the cities of the nations will fall through their pact of mutually assured atomic destruction.63  God's final judgment on babylonianism64 and His vengeance on it for His People's sake will be complete.65 So will be accomplished the fulfilment of Nebuchadnezzar's dream foretelling the destruction of the image of world babylonianism by the Church of Jesus Christ, the stone not made with hands - the rock against which the gates of hell would not prevail.66

 

     In that day of God's great wrath, the Hebrews too will come into salvation by faith out of the great holocaust they shall incur from the man of sin when he turns to destroy them.67  Having asked for Caesar unto their own destruction, their eyes will be opened to their sin of the rejection of Jesus.68 Then shall all Israel be saved - Old and New together.69  So shall the King of Kings return to assume His throne70 prepared by His People - Lord Jesus Christ, Sole Master of the Universe.71

 

     Thus ends the 4,500 year war for control of the earth through collectivization. Thus is completed the total salvation of the People of God.

 

     Even so, come quickly, Lord Jesus.72

 

[*NOTE: Dec. 2010: At face value, this prophecy would appear to be false. The reference to "Ich bin ein Berliner" is a quote from U.S. President John F. Kennedy given at the Berlin Wall on June 26, 1963. Twenty-four years later, on June 12, 1987, and within a few weeks if not days of the first penning of this manuscript, U.S. President Ronald Reagan issued his "tear down this wall" speech at the same location. Within approximately 3 1/2 years of that speech and this writing (the end of 1990) the wall was down and the two Berlins and Germanies were re-united. However, barring a miraculous resurrection (which is not impossible), neither U.S. President would appear to be the Man of Sin referred to in this teaching having effected this reunion. If not, but and if the teaching is yet somehow prophetically accurate, then it is possible that the Lord's perspective on the Man of Sin as a U.S. President may be in terms of a collective "generational man" inhabiting that office, one whose finally revealed personality remains to be seen, but to whom may still be applied Kennedy's words and Reagan's effects already accomplished.]  

 

______________________________

 

 

References:

1 Gen 11  

2 Dan 2:35  

3 I Pt 4:17 > Is 10:12,25; 51:22-23  Jer 25:9>12,29  Ob 16  Zec 1:18-21  

4 Is 6:11-12  Jer 9:16; 10:17; 18:17; 22:26  Ezk 5:10; 12:14; 20:23; 22:15; 36:19  Hos 9:17  Zec 1:18-19; 2:6; 7:14  

5 II Ki 17, 24 and 25     

6 Is 26:18>20-21   

7 Ezk 36:1 - 37:27  Zep 1:2-18 > 3:9-20  Dan 11:35   

8 Is 1:24-31; 21:10; 27:12; 65:9-16  Jer 15:7; 24:1-10  Ezk 9:1-11; 11:17-21; 44:5-16; 48:11-12  Am 7:8; 9:9-12  Hab 3:12-13  Zep 3:11-13 Zec 13:8-9  Mal 4:1-3  

9 Is 25:7-8  

10 Dan 7:8,11,20-21,24-26 > 8:9-12,23-25 > 11:21-45  

11 Dan 8:5 > 9:12      

12 Dan 2:40 > 7:7,19,23 > Rev 13:1-18  

13 Dan 9:27  

14 I Thess 5:3  

15 II Th 2:9  Rev 13:14 

16 Dan 2:33,40-43    

17 Rev 13:3     

18 Rev 17      

19 II Thess 2:9-12   Mt 24:23-24   

20 Dan 11:30  > I Jn 2:18-19   

21 (Lk 7:4-5)  

22 Dan 11:45  

23 Jn 19:15     

24 II Thess 2:4    

25 Dan 7:21,25 > 8:24 > 11:28-35 > 12:10         

26 Ezk 21:1-32       

27 Rev 13:14-15 > Dan 2:31 > 3:1-7  

28 II Thess 2:4 > Dan 7:25; 8:11,25; 11:36-39      

29 Rev 13:15-16 > Dan 3:6-11,15,19-23       

30 Rev 7:14; 12:11,17; 13:7,10,15; 14:12-13; (20:4)       

31 Dan 11:30,32  

32 Mt 24:9-10,12  

33 Rev 17:16 > Jer 6:29-30; 13:24-25  Ezk 11:21; 22:17-22  Hos 13:3  Zep 3:11  Zec 13:8  Mal 4:1  

34 Is 6:13; 11:11-12; 17:4-6; 28:5-6; 41:10; 57:13; 65:8-10  Jer 4:14,27; 5:10,18;  17:7-8; 30:7-9; 39:15-18; 40:11-12; 45:5; 51:50; 52:16   Joel 2:32   Ob 17   Mic 2:12   Nah 1:7  Hab 1:12; 3:13  Zep 2:7,9; 3:12-20  Zec 2:7-8; 8:6-7,11-13; 9:6-8; 13:9  Mal 3:16-16; 4:2-3    

35 Is 28:16; 52:12    

36 (Ps 50:5)      

37 Jer 30:8-9  

38 Mt 24:14  Rev 11:3-6; 14:6-7     

39 II Pt 2:9   Rev 3:10; 7:1-7; 9:4 > Ezk 9:1-6   

40 Rev 12:14 > Is 27:7-11    Jer 31:2  Ezk 20:34-38  Hos 2:14-15  

41 Hos 6:11   

42 Is 26:20; 32:18-20  

43 Is 10:20-21,24-25; 29:24; 30:18-20  Ezk 6:8-10; 7:16; 12:16  Mic 7:8-20; Zep 3:9-11  

44 Jude 23-23  I Cor 3:15  Is 31:5,9; 43:2  Jer 30:7 Zec 10:11; 13:9  

45 Is 21:15-25; 32:1 

46 Acts 7:29-30  

47 Is 33:1,8  Jer 4:7; 9:11; 10:22; 20:4; 21:4; 22:6,25; 33:10; 34:22  Ezk 6:14; 7:3,9>22-23; 24:21  Dan 8:11-12, 26,27; 11:31; 12:11  [ Rev 11:1-2 > Is 63:18-19  Jer 51:51  Ezk 9:7-11 ]    

48  Rev 11:2-3; 12:14; 13:5  Dan 7:25; 12:11 > Ezk 21:14  Hos 6:2  Jonah 1:17 - 2:10   

49 Hab 2:7,10  

50 Gen 3:15 

51 Dan 3  

52 Dan 11:33-35; 12:10 > Zec 13:9; Mal 3:2-5  I Pt 4:12-13  

53 Rev 8:3-5 > Dan 7:22,27  Hab 2:6-8 > Is 11:14-16; 14:2; 28:6; 31:8-9; 41:15-16; 54:17  Jer 51:20-24  Am 9:12  Mic 4:13; 5:5-9; 7:14-17  Zep 2:7,9-10; 3:20  Zec 8:11-13; 9:11-17; 10:3-7,12; 12:1-14  Mal 4:3   

54 Ob 19-20  Jonah 3:1-3  Mic 5:7-9  Zec 2:10-11  

55 Rev 12:11  

56 Mt 24:31 > Is 11:11-13; 27:13; 35:10; 41:10; 43:6-8; 49:12; 66:19-20  Jer 16:14-21; 23:3-8; 30:8 - 31:40; 32:37-44; 33:6-26; 46:27  Ezk 11:17-20; 20:41; 28:25-26; 36:24; 37:21-22; 39:25-29  Hos 11:9-12  Mic 2:12-13  

57 Rev 14:14-16; 15:1-2  Dan 12:1-3  I Cor 15:51-53  I Thess 4:17     

58 Rev 11:11-12 > Is 62:2  Jer 12:15  

59 Rev 14:17-20 > Is 51:22-23; 63:1-6  Jer 25:15-33  Joel 3:13  Zep 1:7  

60 Dan 2:43  

61 Rev 16:12-16 > Is 13:4-8; 34:1-4  Joel 3:1,11  Zep 3:8      

62 Rev 17:15-18      

63 Rev 16:1-11,18-20  II Pt 3:10 > Zec 14:12  Is 10:17-18; 29:5-8; 33:11-12; 47:14; 66:15-16  Ezk 38:22  Joel 2:30  Hab 2:13  Zep 1:18; 3:8    

64 Is 10:12-19,25-27; 13:17-22; 14:3-27; 17:12-14; 21:9; 24:21; 30:27-33; 33:3; 47:1-5,8-15; 48:14-15; 66:16  Jer 10:25; 12:14-17; 25:12-14,32-33; 46:28; 50:1 - 51:64  Ezk 32:18-32  Joel 3:1-21  Zep 3:8  Hag 2:6  Zec 1:20-21; 2:9; 9:1-6; 10-11; 14:12-15   

65  Is 34:8; 41:10-13  Jer 50:28; 51:34-35  Joel 3:21 > Rev 16:6; 18:6,20  

66 Dan 2:34-35  Mt 16:18  

67 Dan 9:27 Lk 21:20-24 > Mic 5:11,14  

68 II Cor 3:15-16 > Zec 12:10  Rev 1:7  

69 Rom 11:25-29   

70 Rev 19:1 - 20:4  Mt 24:27  II Thess 2:8  Is 64:1-3; 66:15-16  Mic 1:2-4  Zec 14:1-11  Mal 3:2-5     

71 Rev 19:11ff  Dan 2:35,44 > 7:13-14,22,27 > 8:25  Is 19:19-25; 32:1; 62:1-12; 65:17-25; 66:22-24  Ezk 37:24-28  Mic 4:2-13  Zec 9:9-10   

72 Rev 22:20


 

14. BECOMING CONFORMED TO HIS IMAGE

 

 

     It behooved God that His People should fulfil the image of their Saviour in obtaining their complete salvation.1 What He began for them at the cross, He has ordained them to  share in completing through apprenticeship with Him in every detail.2 As He initiated their salvation by dying for them, so are they to share in the completion of their salvation by dying with Him.3 As He first overcame, so have they been assigned to overcome; so that as He is destined to rule, they might rule with Him.4 God's ultimate desire has never been to rule over, but to rule with His People. His ultimate desire has been companionship.5

 

     It was for this purpose of developing a ruling companion for the Son that the babylonian quest was ever allowed to emerge on earth. In the beginning of our study, it looked like God called-out a People for the sake of destroying the rebellion under Nimrod. But at the end we see that He allowed the rebellion to emerge for the sake of calling-out to Himself a People. He allowed it to emerge so that out of it He might initially redeem a People who could then be made equal to ruling with Him by their overcoming of it.

 

     The purpose of the final struggle between the Church and the world system in the coming tribulation is to put His People "over the top" in completing their development into worthy ruling companionship. Jesus did not do all the dying. He left an unfinished portion of His sufferings to be completed by His People for their own complete redemption and for extending that redemption to still others.6  The culmination of their allotted sufferings will take place in the tribulation.

     -  As He died for them outside the camp of babylonian Judaism, so has He ordained them to die outside the camp of world babylonianism.7

     -  As He was made perfect through His sufferings, so are they to be made perfect in one body through their sufferings in the tribulation.8

     -  As He was dead for three days and then rose with a new body at the beginning of the age, so must the Church die three years  and rise with a new body at the end of the age.9

 

     All of this has been ordained so that by Tribulation's end, Jesus will have a body equal to the task of sharing with Him in the administration of the earth in the coming age. Contrary therefore to popular western thought based in false kingdom teaching, the Lord will not up-and-whisk His babylonian-drunk Church into the clouds before the Tribulation. (This is not to say He won't take certain of those who, like Enoch, are ready  before the great judgment.)10  Neither will He come after the Church has somehow "perfected" corrupt babylonian society by "permeating" it. Neither of these teachings allows God to complete the image of the Lord Jesus Christ in His People so they can be made ready to share His throne.

 

     Is there such a thing as a king who rules without a well-trained network of administration that shares his mind? Even so Jesus has ordained to have a People who are thoroughly developed in the three-fold salvation of His kingdom. Through the last great Tribulation, His People will enter and complete the third degree of their salvation, completing their conformity to His image. Thus they will be able to share in the administration of earth with Him at His return.

 

     Right now the Church world-wide is anticipating the imminent return of Jesus Christ to assume His earthly throne. The signs of the times bear witness.11 Moreover, in many quarters of the Church is circulating the prophetic promise of a mighty earth-shaking revival of God's People  before He comes. But be not deceived by the mixture of false kingdom teaching which interprets that prophecy in terms of revival of the American Dream.  No. The coming revival is none other than the Church's salvation by grace from the works of all babylonian society - east and west. This is the true revival unto rulership. The only remaining question is -

 

Are you ready?

 

______________________________

 

References:

1 Rom 8:29  Eph 4:13  

2 Phlp 2:12  Lk 6:40  I Pt 2:21    

3 Phlp 3:10  II Cor 4:10  

4 II Tim 2:12  Rev 3:21  Lk 22:28-30    

5 Jn 17:20-24 > Rev 21:2-7,9-11ff  

6 Col 1:24 > I Pt 4:13       

7 Heb 13:12-13  

8 Heb 2:10; 5:8-9 > I Pt 4:1  Heb 12:10  

9 Mk 8:31 > Rev 11:9,11  

1O Heb 11:5 > Rev 12:5; 7:3-4; 14:1-5  

11 Mt 11:24


 

15. "UNTO THE CHURCH IN WEST BABYLONIA WRITE"

 

     Now, dear Relative in Christ, I turn to you with the word of the Lord.

 

     I write unto you because the storm clouds gather for the final battle of the age, and you are not ready. I write unto you because the day of threshing wheat from chaff is at hand and you are unable to stand. I write unto you because the way for salvation from the works of the world is opening and you are unable to enter in.

 

     And why are you unable to enter in? It is because you have embraced the works of fixed society as the work of God and are blinded by your brand of false kingdom teaching. You see yourself on the "cutting edge" of God's work1  - you have built with your brick and mortar, you have garnered the favour of presidents and kings - but know not that you are wretched and miserable, poor and blind and naked.2

 

     You are blind to the gaps in your salvation from what God has already restored, gaps that must be filled if you are to have hope of surviving the coming SCATTERING to enter into the last salvation:

     - You have rejected the word of the fear of the Lord which is the beginning of wisdom.3 You have rejected the word of judgment and repentance which is the beginning of the Gospel of salvation.4

     - Or you have rejected the word of the cross and of self-denial. You have rejected the Spirit's crucifixion of the works of the flesh in your soul.5  You have refused the baptism of fire6  into a deeper walk with God that would perfect your inward holiness and reveal the Father's all-captivating Presence to you.7

     - Or you have rejected the word of the baptism of the Holy Spirit and salvation from the powers of the carnal mind.8 You have rejected the gifts of the Spirit, redefining them to suit your unbelief. You have rejected the word of prophecy and the speaking in other tongues.9  You have rejected the word of faith for changing the here and now. You have rejected the word of supernatural healing through laying on of hands. You have rejected the word of deliverance from demons, which demons you are held captive to in your crass unbelief. You have rejected the supernatural though you profess faith in it.

    

     In all this you have sealed to yourself your blindness by closing your heart from those in the Church who have filled in the gaps of salvation that you have rejected.10  In hypocrisy you have cried "unity, unity", castigating those who break rank with your unbelief to enter the salvation you have refused. It is you who are responsible for destroying the unity of the Spirit as you cast others out of your synagogues and houses.

     Shall you therefore enter into God's total salvation? Shall you be revealed as wheat? I say you shall not. Because you have beat your fellowservants and have eaten and drunk with the world,11 you shall be left to outer darkness and shall be trampled in the outer court.12

 

     I write unto you because you count yourself rich in Christ but know not you are poverty-struck. For you have squandered your riches in Christ on the booze of babylonian works in the name of the "kingdom of God".

     You have devoured your inheritance in Christ with the spiritual harlotry of America's cities.13  Your soul is drunk14 on the cares and pleasures of Euro-American economy and culture.15  You are drunk on the false image of nostalgia over past "better days" in your imagined American Zion. 

     In the name of "evangelism" your heart is overcharged with the cares of THIS world:16 political reform, economic reform, social reform. Instead of drawing men's hearts out of these issues, you magnify them and are yourself ensnared therein.

      You fight abortion, drug abuse, sexual perversion - as if you expected something better from nimrodian society. You fight unjust taxes (from which you have no right to exemption). You fight for "school prayer" (to an un-named god) as if the laws of human society could guarantee a freedom found only in the heart.

 

     Did Jesus any of these things? Or was His kingdom of this world afterall?

     Do you really believe American society is the kingdom of God? Do you believe the Republican party is the mouthpiece of the Spirit? Do you really believe the U.S. Constitution is direct heir to the New Testament? Do you really believe your brick-and-mortar church buildings and schools sponsored by the American Dream are the repositories of the Shekinah Glory?

     If you say "yes" to any of these you are a fool. If you say "no" you are a greater fool because your actions make you a liar. For what slave fights for an enemy kingdom the way you fight for your "American rights"?17

 

     You are drunk on your "9-5" job in the name of "serving Christ". You are a workaholic for Nimrod, pumping your LIFE back into the drive for globalization.

     You fear unemployment like the plague when it is your greatest ticket to salvation from the works of the world. You say you live by faith but your life shows you define prosperity by the Dow Jones Average and the price of gasoline.

 

     You define your obligations to God in terms of your commitments to collective society and then persecute the pioneers of the next salvation because they don't "contribute to society" nor "use their talents" to advance it. You persecute them for their "laziness" because they aren't employed by Babylon like you are and you cannot tell how God provides for them. You persecute them because they do not join in your frenzied drives to reform the evils of an evil society.

     You persecute them because they walk outside the confines of your brick-and-mortar religion and do not support your building drives with their "tithes and offerings". You persecute them as "rebellious" because they refuse submission to the thread of human political authority (called "spiritual authority") that runs through every assembly tied to stone. You call them "cultic" because they are not afraid to disciple men outside the controlled bounds of your "spirit-filled" synagogues.

     As you do concerning those who fill the gaps of salvation you lack, so you speak evil of what you do not understand concerning the apostles of coming salvation.18 Their unpredictability which characterizes all who are born of the Spirit is an offense to you.19 Instead of ameliorating their afflictions,20  you turn away  angels  unawares21  and blaspheme the beginning of the Spirit's next work.22  You glorify the tombs of past pioneers - Luther, Wesley, Mueller - but are the children of their murderers.23

 

     Do you suppose therefore that with the few crumbs of salvation you have obtained you shall be counted worthy to escape the burning threshing to come and to stand before the Son on Man?24  I tell you, nay, but except for God's grace you shall not escape.

     Do you suppose your knowledge of the signs of the times shall deliver you from those times? I tell you, nay, your knowledge shall beat you with many stripes when at last you are found unprepared for the coming destruction of  which you knew.25

     Do you think your hidden reserves of food and water, your private bomb shelters, or your gold and silver coins will save you? I tell you, nay, but because of your drunken  unbelief26 toward God's last salvation, your physical preparations shall avail you nothing.27

     Do you think your knowledge of conspiracy theories - Freemasonry, international banking, the "Illuminati", the Jesuits - will save you? I tell you, nay, it shall not. Do not say "The Roman Catholics will support the new order but we will not." Do not say "The `dead' ecumenical churches will yield to the false prophet but we will not." For I say unto you, Every "church" rooted in brick-and-mortar is a dead church, and every church married to American collective society will yield in that day. And in that day, those who cried loudest from their "tax-free" pulpits against the coming order will be found together with those who supported it. Yea, all who have lived in harlotry with American society will be cast into a bed of tribulation with her except they repent and abandon their fixed religion.28

 

     Nevertheless, I write unto you because there is yet hope. The spiritual pattern yet holds true. For as the apostles of new salvation have ever found mercy through the unbelief of their predecessors, so the unbelieving predecessors may find mercy through the apostles' mercy.29

     Yes. You have persecuted. You have blasphemed what you have not understood.30  You have lost much time toward the countdown unto threshing. But redeem the time31 you have lost if so be God is gracious32 to you and you yet have ears to hear.33  Heed the message while you can respond.34  Flee babylon now while you may before the rake of threshing falls and your flight is forced upon you.35  By then your heart may be too heavy to hear36 and it will be too late to pray.37

 

     Deal with what chaff  remains to you so that as final salvation dawns you may be revealed as wheat.38  Fill in the gaps of restored salvation you yet lack. If you lack the fear and sovereignty of God, enter into it! If you lack the abundant life of intimacy with God through self-denial, enter into it! If you lack the supernatural gifts of the Spirit through the baptism of the Spirit, move into them! For if you have not entered into what has already been restored, how will you enter into that which remains to be revealed?

 

     Now therefore, deal with your drunken affair with American society in the name of "advancing the kingdom, evangelism, salting society, taking dominion," and all such foolishness. It is time for you to watch for the exit sign over the door of your job, your social connections, and your institutionalized "church".

 

     "But," you say, "What are you talking about? God called me to this ministry. God called me to this church. God called us to build all these buildings."

     Yes, and I believe you (though not most of you). I believe God called you to this or that ministry in the confines of Egypt. But you must realize that just because God has spoken a word is no guarantee that He has spoken His truest mind on the matter or that He even basically approves of the thing He has spoken.

     Throughout Scripture God has spoken unto men to accommodate their unbelief and concede to their weakness.39 Yet ultimately the way of God, not man, must prevail. The word that represents the way of God must overrule the word that accommodates man in his weakness and unbelief.

     Did not God say to Balaam, "Go with the men"?40  Yea, but first He had said, "Do not go."41   Did not the Law permit Old Israel to divorce their wives for every cause?42  Yea, but Jesus the Word Incarnate said, "From the beginning it was not so."43

     Therefore do not say to me, "See here! God's Law made Israel provision for a human king."44  For God told Samuel, "They have rejected Me in asking for a king."45  Do not say to me, "See here! God commissioned David and Solomon to build the temple."46 For God had first told David, "I need no temple."47  His word of "commission" was but a concession to the idea of a human king who himself should never have been.

  Divide the word of truth rightly!48 Do not use the concessionary word of God to nullify the perfect word of God. For what is good in His sight may not be acceptable, and what is acceptable in His sight may not be perfect. The good must one day yield to the acceptable, and the acceptable must yield to the perfect.49

 

     Therefore do not say to me, "But God told me to build this great `American' ministry." It could be God answered you according to the idol of your own pre-determined will.50 Do not use the word of concession to nullify the word of perfection and justify your unbelief. For I say unto you, "From the beginning it was not so." Jesus left no blueprints to His followers for the building of stone temples, whether or not He has conceded to your darkness and permitted you so to build. The Scripture says, "The time of this ignorance God winked at, but now commands men everywhere to repent."51

     Let us leave behind the stumblingblocks of fixed ministry and enter the fuller light of salvation from all the works of collective society. For once we are come to the revelation of greater faith, we are no longer under the schoolmaster of lesser faith.52  When confronted with higher faith, it becomes sin and unbelief for you to remain under the schoolmaster of lesser faith. And if you do, then it may be rightly said that God's word to you is your stumblingstone.53

     Listen therefore. It is now time for you to abandon your babylonian based ministries and churches. It is time for you to abandon your quest to preserve "godly" American society. For the darkness is past and the true light now shines!54

 

     "But," you say, "How can you say that about America? Look at how God has blessed us! See what Christianity has done for America. We have made America the greatest nation on earth! We must preserve it. How can you tell us to flee what God has blessed through our devoted involvement?"

     To this I say, have you still never learned from history? Do you still not divide rightly the word of truth? For wherever God has blessed His People, at that site have they erected their altars to their blessings and ascribed the glory to human flesh.55  Wherever God's Presence goes by His Gospel, blessing is sure to follow. But does that permit the fornication of God's People with those blessings, or does that make the sinful recipients of that blessing "great" in God's eyes?56 "ALL flesh is grass... and the nations as a drop in the bucket."57

     America has served as the host land for the latest Restoration of God's People. Of course America has been blessed. But did that give you reason to fornicate by building to her glory a collective society, and is such blessing a result of your   having continued to support it?

     If you believe God has blessed America because His People built her, I ask you, how much more could He have blessed her had His People remained as mere sojourners in her midst rather than her builders? For through your fornication in building American society, you planted the seeds for its moral curses - curses which you now fight but can never root out and will at last force you out of it!

     Behold the blessings of King Solomon's babylonian empire! Was not he blessed? But his blessings mixed with his personal fornication with babylonian society led to his own moral ruin. And could his "blessed" empire sown on the backs of slave labour58  prevent reaping the civil war that followed?59 And could it then prevent its own ultimate enslavement to the babylonians it emulated?

     Therefore consider well you American babylonian Christians! Do you think your "Christian" empire built on the backs of slave labour will escape the same fate? Because by your blessings you erected a constitutional altar to Nimrod, your very blessings are become your cursings as you strive to climb the ladder of health and wealth to destruction.60  Behold after 200 years the moral ruin of your cities and of your children lost to the Gospel because of your "blessings".

     But as for these "blessings" of which you speak, with respect to which of the races of red men you slaughtered or black men you suffocated on your slave ships has God blessed America? The "blessings" of abortion and third world rebellion are the fruit of the deeds of your fathers sown in the name of the Gospel which preaches "Love thy neighbour"61  and "Do unto others..."62

     All human nations are to be judged and destroyed.63 If America were not of the same evil root as all collective nations, why did prophecy doom her to destruction before she began? And how then do you justify trying to preserve that which God has destined to go up in smoke?

     Therefore I say unto you, do not use the incidental temporal blessings of God to deceive yourself in continuing your affair with a nation built like the nations - a nation built on the principles of him who was a murderer from the beginning!64 Open your blind eyes! If you want to be a true blessing to American society and to what remains of your children, flee it now while you can! Get out now before the door closes and locks on you, or before you are otherwise cast out with no preparation.

     Put off your religiously disguised excuses while you yet have hope of escape. For if you praise the Puritans who left their babylonian societies only to found a more deceptive one, why should you reject God's message that now calls you to forsake American society to fulfil the true calling? If you claim to be against the drive for world collectivization, then put your action where your mouth is! Develop mobility and prepare to get out and fulfil the Great Commission!

 

     "NOW IS THE TIME," saith the Lord. "NOW IS THE TIME, MY PEOPLE, THAT YOU FORSAKE YOUR WAYS AND LOOK TO THE END OF ALL THINGS."

 

     God will not hold up His time clock for your disobedience.65 It is for you to decide now whether you will move out by faith   into salvation from the works of the world, or whether you will be steamrolled by the forces of tribulation into fleeing for your life or denying the faith. When that time arrives there will be no other alternatives.

     NOW is the time to look for the exit sign over the door of your babylonian job, social ties, and brick-and-mortar church. NOW is the time to learn how to fly with eagle's wings into the wilderness.66  What will you do when they say you can no longer buy and sell unless you take their mark? What will you do then? and where will your arguments be against those who left before you?67

     I challenge you now in the Name of the Lord to start entering into the final phase of salvation. Commit yourself NOW to learning a life of unattached mobility by faith. Consecrate yourself to depending on God for your family's and your own provisions through an economy  based on  giving.68  These things are not far-fetched reactionary ideas. They are simply the words of Jesus you never took seriously before! - "Sell what you have and follow Me...Leave your father and mother and follow Me...leave your nets and follow Me."69

 

     This is not a message for you to obey after the flesh. It is not for you to take actions on this message based in your own understanding.70  It is for you to commit yourself to the working out of this message into the fabric of your salvation through obedience to the Spirit.71  Not until the righteousness of its requirements is knit into your being by the Spirit are you free from its requirements!72

     Salvation by grace from ALL human works is a total package. Its phases are not optional. What we refuse to grow into the easier way, God must prick us into by tribulation. And if we refuse to grow even then, then we are not His.73

     This is a hard message. It is an offensive message. (The preaching of the complete cross is always an offense.) Therefore, cooperate with the Spirit of God NOW. Let Him lead you into the complete obedience of this salvation. He will show you what, where, when, and how to give things up and break ties with your fixed society. He does not expect you to carry this obedience out in your own strength. But continue no longer in your vain search for excuses to keep your job and other ties to the American Dream. Start looking for reasons to give them up to follow Christ outside the camp. Quit justifying why you stay where you are and start justifying why you should leave for some other place on earth to fulfil the Great Commission.

     The forsaking of babylonianism is never easy. But forsaking it is easier than bearing the consequences when it turns on us to destroy us. If you do not make these decisions for yourself now on terms you can control, men will make them for you under circumstances you cannot control.

 

     "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise instruction."74

     Do you fear the Lord or are you a fool? If you fear the Lord, then stop saying in your heart, "My Lord delayeth His coming"75  and "Since the fathers fell asleep all things continue as they were from the beginning."76 Change your attitude. Otherwise wisdom will say to you,

     "Because I called and you refused... I will mock when your calamity comes."77

 

     "Now is the time. Behold, now is the day of salvation."78

    

     "For here we have no continuing city."79

 

     "HE THAT HATH AN EAR, LET HIM HEAR WHAT THE SPIRIT SAITH UNTO THE CHURCHES IN WEST BABYLONIA."80

 

     Amen.

 

______________________________

 

References:

1 (Jer 8:8)  

2 Rev 13:17  

3 Pr 9:10  Rev 14:6-7     

4 Mt 4:17   

5 Rom 8:13  Gal 5:24  

6 Mt 3:11  (I Pt 5:10)     

7 Jn 14:21,23   

8 Mt 3:11 > Acts 2:1-39  Rom 8:5-6 > 12:2  

9 I Cor 12 and 14  Mk 16:17-18  

10 I Cor 3:3-4; 11:29  Gal 5:15  Jms 2:14-16    

11 Mt 24:49-51; 25:30  

12 Rev 11:2  Is 63:18-19  Jer 51:51  Ezk 9:7-11

13 Lk 15:13,30  

14 Is 28:1-4,7-8  Jer 13:12-14  Hos 7:5-7  Mic 2:11  Hab 2:5  Zep 1:12  

15 Mt 13:22; 24:(38>)49    

16 Lk 21:34 

17 (Jn 18:36)  

18 II Pt 2:12   

19 Jn 3:8 

20 (Heb 10:34)      

21 Heb 13:2  

22 Mt 12:31-32  

23 Mt 23:29-32 > 5:21-22   

24 Lk 21:35-36  

25 Jer 9:23-24  Lk 12:47  

26 Is 29:9-14  Ezk 16:49  

27 Ezk 7:19  Zep 1:18

28 Rev 2:20-23  

29 Rom 11:30-32  

30 I Ti 1:13     

31 Eph 5:16   

32 II Ti 2:25  Am 5:15  Zep 2:3  

33 Ezk 12:3  

34 Lk 8:18  Is 30:8-17  

35 Rev 18:4 > Is 48:20  Jer 6:1-2; 50:8; 51:6,9,45  Mic 2:10  Zec 2:6-7  

36 Mt 13:13-15  Is 6:9-10; 26:9-12  Ezk 12:1-3 

37 Jer 7:16; 11:14; 14:11 > 21:2; 37:3  

38 I Cor 11:31    

39 Ps 18:25 > I Ki 22:5-28  II Ki 8:7-14    

40 Num 12:20  

41 Num 12:12

42 Dt 24:1-4  

43 Mt 19:8   

44 Dt 17:14-15  

45 I Sam 8:7   

46 II Sam 7:13  I Ki 5:5; 9:3 I Chr 22:10       

47 II Sam 7:5-7     Acts 7:47-51  

48 II Tim 2:15  

49 Rom 12:2      

50 Ezk 14:4-5    

51 Acts 17:30  

52 Gal 3:25  

53 Rom 9:32-33; 11:7-10 > Jer 6:21 Ezk 3:20  Hos 14:9  

54 I Jn 2:8  

55 Dt 31:20-21  Ezk 16  Hos 2:8; 10:1; 13:6 > I Cor 10:6-7  

56 Is 26:10  

57 Is 40:6-7,15-17

58 I Ki 5:13-14  

59 I Ki 12  

60 Hab 2:13  

61 Mk 12:31   

62 Mt 7:12  

63 Jer 30:11; 46:28  Joel 3:2  Hag 2:7  Zec 14:2-3 > Rev 16:13-20; 19:10-21  

64 Jn 8:44  

65 Mt 24:42-44,50-51    

66 Hos 12:9   

67 Is 28:22; 29:20  

68 Lk 6:30,38  

69 Mt 19:21; 8:22 > 10:37; 4:19-20  

70 Pr 3:5  

71 Phlp 2:12  

72 Rom 8:4   Gal 5:18     

73 Heb 12:7-8  

74 Pr 1:7  

75 Mt 24:48  Ezk 12:26-28   

76 II Pt 3:4  Ezk 12:21-23  

77 Pr 1:24-33  

78 II Cor 6:2  

79 Heb 13:14   

80 Rev 3:22


 

LABOUR NOT FOR THE MEAT THAT PERISHES

 

    "...They invited him to their home and explained to him the way of God more perfectly." Acts 18:26

 

 

     Wherever God moves to establish (or re-establish) the perfect  way of grace which replaces the way of the law, he raises up a voice to fully articulate that more perfect way. When the fullness of time was come to introduce the covenant of grace to replace the Mosaic covenant, God raised up the apostle Paul to clearly articulate it. Thus we have the letters to the Romans and Galatians in the New Testament. Additionally, we have the letter to the Hebrews by an un-named writer.

 

     The salvation by grace we have through Jesus Christ has many unfolding dimensions. It brings release to the Church from the requirements and curses of all law, and into a higher righteousness through the Spirit. The purpose of this article is to articulate more perfectly the way of grace concerning salvation from the dead works of fixed economy and social community under the "Law of Debt For Service Rendered".

 

 

The Law of Debt For Service Rendered

 

     In the beginning of history, the very first law to which man became subject was what we shall call the "Law of Debt For Service Rendered". This law says that man must earn bread by the sweat of toil.[i][1]

 

      We refer to this law in many ways. Most commonly we call it "earning a living". In more complex economy, we say it this way: "You do this for me and I will do that for you. You give me such-and-such and I will give you so-and-so." In terms of social community, this same law is phrased: "I be kind to you and you therefore be nice to me. I do you a favour and you owe me a favour later." All of this describes what we call "The Law of Debt For Service Rendered". It is the law of interpersonal obligation, both economic and social. Henceforth, we will simply call it the "Law of Work".

 

     All law is given by God to expose man's lawlessness and to check that lawlessness.[ii][2]  The form of lawlessness which the Law of Work was given to check was the new preponderance to laziness acquired through Adam's sin. This first law appears throughout Scripture, especially in Proverbs. In the New Testament, it is succinctly stated by Paul: "If any man will not work, neither shall he eat." [iii][3]

 

     Wherever there is law, there is a curse.[iv][4]  The curse is that by his knowledge of the law, man becomes accountable for doing what he otherwise has no ability to do in any way that satisfies God's requirement. Therefore he becomes subject to automatic judgment without recourse. Meanwhile the rest of his life is subject to dead works under that law.

 

     Under the Law of Work, man was sentenced to a life of profitless labour.[v][5]  His works under this law could not please God,[vi][6] for after a life of toil, he dies anyway. His dead works could not sustain him forever on the earth. They could not even correct his new bent toward sloth and laziness. It would always be there. The reality of this curse was witnessed to by the growing of thorns in the ground. So we find that with his subjection to his first law, man was put under his first curse.[vii][7]

 

 

"Cursed Is Everyone That Hangs Upon a Tree"

 

     This brings us to the salvation by grace we have in Jesus Christ from the curse of dead works under the law. We know that Jesus died to save us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us.[viii][8]

 

     But from how much of the curse? Did Jesus die only to save us from the curse of dead works under the Law of Moses? If so, from where else can other salvation arise to save us from the Law of Work? If Jesus did not die to save us from the curse of all law but only that of the Law of Moses, then there is no salvation from the curse under the Law of Work. For after Jesus there is no more sacrifice for sins! [ix][9]  If Jesus didn't save us from the first curse when He died the first time, then there is no salvation from it because Jesus only died once and won't die again.[x][10] If so, it means we are subject to earning a living for ever!

 

     Too much to swallow? If you don't believe that, if you don't believe you will have to work forever, it must be because you indeed believe Jesus covered that curse when He died. That Jesus did indeed die to remove the very first curse is signified to us by the fact that on the cross, He wore a crown of thorns.[xi][11] By this we are shown that Jesus' death on that tree covered the curse represented by those thorns - the curse of dead works under the Law of Work.

 

     But if it is true that Jesus died to remove the very first curse, then that curse has already been removed. So it remains for His people to enter into their salvation by grace from it here and now. NOW is the day of salvation.[xii][12]

 

      No, dear Relative. The curses for which Jesus died were not removed on some "time-release plan". They were removed all together, made of none effect then and there, once and for all at Calvary. The only delay has been the failure of His People to enter into their practical deliverance from all curses because of their unbelief -  an unbelief out of which it has been requiring God centuries to restore them .

 

     This then is the message of salvation by grace from the curse under the Law of Work. Jesus Christ died to remove the curse of the law which says a man must earn his daily bread to stay alive. His salvation by grace extends to fulfil the righteousness of that law by obedience through the Spirit.[xiii][13] God ordained that by grace, a man should enter into the completed liberty of trusting God for His provisions apart from the law. Salvation by grace changed the entire definition of "work".

 

     Before Jesus Christ, "work" was defined as earning a living by sweat. Since Jesus Christ fulfilled the requirement of that law for us to gain perpetual life, "work" became defined as obedience to the Spirit outside the Law of Work.[xiv][14] Man became lifted into an entirely new economy in which God became man's direct Employer - an economy in which man's only obligation is to obey the will of the Father through the Spirit. God "pays his keep" in the world without respect to human economy or a man's own physical labour.

 

     Salvation from the Law of Work was typified in the Old Testament. While Israel travelled through the wilderness, God directly supplied their physical  need  through  manna.[xv][15]  Israel did not "earn" manna. For Israel, the Law of Work was temporarily lifted and they lived under complete grace respecting that law. This was a foretype of the Church's coming salvation from that law in Her 2,OOO year wilderness journey until Christ's return.  It especially typifies Her last three and one half years journey through the wilderness of world tribulation outside all human economy. Other foretypes of this salvation in the Old Testament include Elijah[xvi][16] and the prophets who lived outside the Law of Work and the dead works of human economy.

 

The Teaching of Jesus

 

     To get a real feel for the truth of our salvation from the law of human economy, we need to turn to the Life of the Author and Finisher of our faith. The Word of Jesus Christ is our final authority. There are a number of telling statements from Jesus revealing that He lived above the Law of Work. He lived under the higher law of grace through obedience to the Spirit.

 

     Christians are quite familiar with the story of the "woman at the well". After the disciples returned to Jesus at the well, they urged Him to eat some food. His response was, "I have meat to eat that you know not of." [xvii][17]  When they pressed Him further, He elaborated: "My meat is to do the will of Him that sent Me." [xviii][18]

 

     When we read this, we commonly believe Jesus was saying that for Him to do God's will was more important than for Him to eat. We also believe He was saying that by doing God's will He was being kept from the need for eating. Both these are true. But He was saying more. Jesus was actually saying that He depended on the Father for His provision outside the Law of Work. He was making a statement about the economic system of grace under which He lived. He was really saying to His disciples, "I have food from a source outside human economy with which you are unacquainted. My food is supplied to Me strictly in conjunction with My obedience to the Father."

 

     Jesus alludes to this same reality in a statement one time to Martha. As Mary sat and listened to Jesus, Martha was burdened under the "work" of getting a meal together. To Martha who was living under the Law of Work, Mary appeared lazy. But Jesus in effect told Martha that Mary's attentiveness to Him was a far more valid "work" in God's sight and that Mary was not under the Law of Work to which Martha was subjecting herself.[xix][19]

 

     As Jesus lived by grace beyond the Law of Work, so He intended His followers to live - without exception. We know that His Life is the pattern according to which we are expected to work out our salvation through the Spirit. We have been ordained to become conformed to His image in every detail here and now.[xx][20] This therefore must include walking in grace outside the Law of Work, free from the curse of dead works.

 

     It is no surprise then that we find Jesus telling His followers they ought to walk as He was walking [xxi][21] concerning this grace:

     "Take no thought for what you shall eat or what you shall drink or wherewith you shall be clothed...for your Father knows you have need of all these things." [xxii][22]

     Could words be any plainer? What do we think Jesus was saying? Because of unbelief, we interpret these words merely to say: "Don't let earning a living become important to you. Don't let it take pre-eminence in your thinking." But that's not what He was saying. In terms of His own exemplary life, He was saying, "Come out from under the law of earning a living." To "take no thought" for what one is to eat means taking no thought for fulfilling any Law of Work by which food is earned.

 

     Jesus was insistent that His followers come out from under the law of fixed economy. He told them that unless they did, they couldn't truly serve God. Immediately preceding His injunction to take no thought for earning a living He said: "You cannot serve God and mammon." [xxiii][23]  By linking this statement to His injunction to take no thought for earning a living, Jesus was clearly referring to more than just "money" when He spoke of mammon. He was referring to the entire process under the Law of Work by which man takes thought to make money! He was really saying: "You cannot serve God and take thought for (ie, live under) the Law of Work." In so saying, Jesus removed any notion that salvation from the works of earning a living is an optional luxury of grace for the spiritually adventuresome. It was a mandatory requirement for anyone who would call himself a servant of God.

 

     In another place, Jesus said, "Labour not for the meat which perishes, but for that  which  endures  to eternal life."[xxiv][24]  What was He saying? He was directly superseding the law given to Adam which said, "By the sweat of your brow you will eat." What then? Was He destroying the Law? Was He abolishing all economy? Certainly not. He was ordaining the fulfilment of the first law by a higher law.[xxv][25]  He was substituting the first economy with a higher economy.

 

     Jesus didn't just say "Labour not." He went on to say, "Labour for that which endures to eternal life." He was telling men to take their definition of "labour" out from under the Law of Work and re-orient it to the Law of Grace even as He laboured

- doing the will of the Father in the power of the Spirit. Thus saying, He rendered the original law of none effect. He delivered us from having to think any more in terms of "earning a living".

 

 

Giving: The Earmark of Heavenly Economy

 

     The new economy of grace articulated by Jesus was specially identified by the Spirit-law of giving. In direct contrast to the life of sweat under the Law of Work, Jesus advocated a life of trusting rest denoted by the freedom of giving. He explained that, opposite to provision based on industrious labour, provision in God's economy is based on giving. In "Babylon", the more one "works", the more one receives. But in God's Kingdom outside the camp of Babylon, the more one enters into rest from personal labour evidenced by His freedom to give, the more one receives:

     "Therefore I say unto you, give and it shall be given to you."[xxvi][26]

     So the freedom to give is the earmark of salvation by grace from the works of the Law of Work.[xxvii][27] (Note: this principle of giving is a central feature of the current "Prosperity Movement" - a movement which anticipates the Church's soon release from slavery to babylonian economy.

 

 

Freedom From Obligation to Man in the New Economy

 

     In advocating a way of life free from the dead works of human economy, Jesus did not teach that the Father's provision in the new economy would never come through secondary babylonian sources. Consider:

    

     Jesus lived totally independently of fixed human economy, totally above the Law of Work. He saw the Father as His sole Employer. His own Life was marked by tireless giving. In the face of this however, Jesus did not hesitate to receive the Father's provision through the means of men - provision which had somewhere been generated through the babylonian system under the Law of Work. For instance, Jesus often ate freely from the table of pharisees[xxviii][28] - food which in man's eyes had been obtained through the Law of Work. Again, Jesus was supplied through the estates of certain women[xxix][29] - money which had been generated through fixed economy under the Law of Work.

 

     One would think that if Jesus is going to preach against "labouring for the meat that perishes", He ought not receive favours generated by such labour. Why, Jesus even went beyond that apparent hypocrisy. He dared to break that same law socially when He criticized to their faces pharisees from whose tables He was eating.[xxx][30]  (Under the Law of Social Debt For Favour Rendered, you just don't do that!)

 

     But did Jesus feel hypocritical? Obviously not. Doesn't it seem strange to us that Jesus felt no obligation to a system through which He was receiving some of His provision? Doesn't it seem especially offensive that Jesus felt no obligation to "be nice in return" to those from whose tables He ate and in whose homes He slept? To us, yes. To Jesus, no. Why? It is because God is the ultimate Giver of all things to all men, whether or not they think they earned it. "The earth is the Lord's and the fullness of it." [xxxi][31]  Man owns nothing, not even what he thinks is his by lawful possession. In God's economy of grace, God is not limited to meeting His servants' needs outside human economy. Therefore, should the Father see fit to bring provision indirectly through human economy, His servant is not obligated to that secondary source.

 

     It made no difference to Jesus whether the Father's provision came from a fish's mouth[xxxii][32] or a widow's estate; from a miraculously multiplied loaf[xxxiii][33] or from a pharisee's table. He saw it as from the Father only. And should it come secondarily through a man who himself has "earned" it, Jesus felt no obligation to the man. Nor did he feel obligated to soften His truth on such account. He did not feel hypocritical for receiving the Father's provision from a source while criticizing the nature of that source.

 

     Now make no mistake. Jesus wasn't a boor. He was not given to wholesale, boldfaced criticism of His hosts and benefactors. (For every criticism He made, imagine how much He withheld saying in love of all He knew about people!) He was thankful and appreciative to his human providers. But He never felt obligated to them. This freedom from all sense of obligation is intrinsic to salvation from the Law of Work under the economy of grace.

 

 

What About II Thessalonians 3:10?

 

     We have now amply shown that Jesus delivered us from the Law of Debt For Service Rendered. Salvation from the dead works of "earning a living" and also from the obligations of social favouritism is part of the total package of salvation by grace. Through the salvation of Jesus we have been set free from the "work" of human economy and raised to live according to a new economy of grace marked by the freedom to give.

 

     But if this is really true, then we are faced with what appears to be a monumental contradiction of this grace by none other than Paul, the apostle of grace. In his second letter to the Thessalonians, he gives this injunction:

     "If any man will not work, neither shall he eat."

 

     What do we say to this? It seems like Paul is keeping the Church under the original law given to Adam after all. It seems like he is contradicting Jesus. This is important because Paul's words have become the number one stumblingblock to keep the Church from breaking out of Her slavery to the dead works of earning a living. Every time God moves in a believer's life to fulfil the words of Jesus and practically release him from the Law of Work, the Church quotes Paul's words to keep him bound and to justify Her own continuing enslavement under the law. (This is especially true in North America where workaholism is considered a mark of godliness.)

 

     The first thing we say is this. Do we qualify the words of Jesus in terms of the words of Paul? Or do we interpret Paul in light of Jesus? Who is the author of our salvation and therefore our final authority? [xxxiv][34]  Jesus or Paul? It should be obvious that the words of Jesus supersede and qualify the words of Paul. Even if we could find no explanation for this seeming contradiction, we can't possibly use what Paul said to disqualify the message of grace brought by Jesus. The entire thrust of God's revelation is that we are not under law but under the Spirit and we are to be coming out from under law through the Spirit's working in us. If so, how do we reconcile what Paul was saying to what Jesus said so we may divide God's word rightly?

 

"Work Out Your Salvation With Fear and Trembling"[xxxv][35]

 

     The solution to the problem is not complex. The key to understanding it is knowing the difference between our salvation in principle and our salvation as it is worked out through us.[xxxvi][36]

 

"IF WE LIVE IN THE SPIRIT..."[xxxvii][37]

     In principle, we are no longer under ANY Law.[xxxviii][38]  By Law here we mean God's revealed will as it is perceived by the natural mind and capable of attempted fulfilment by natural strength. This includes not only the Law of Moses but the Law of Work.

     Why are we no longer under any Law? Was the Law abolished? Not at all. WE were abolished. We (our old man) were crucified with Christ Who Himself fulfilled the Law and Whose death covered our past transgressions under it.[xxxix][39]  In place of our old inner man, we were born anew.[xl][40] We became reborn of Christ's own nature. We became a new creation in Christ.[xli][41]

     Because Christ's Life is righteous (having perfectly fulfilled the Law) and because we are re-born of His Life, we are the righteousness of God in Christ.[xlii][42]  In principle therefore, our New Life already has fulfilled all Law. Christ's Life is our Life.[xliii][43]  Christ is not under the Law. Therefore we are not under the Law.

     For whom was the Law made? The Law was made for Lawbreakers.[xliv][44]  Christ was not a Lawbreaker. We are born of His Life. Therefore as new men we are no longer Lawbreakers. Therefore we are no longer under the Law.

     WE ARE UNDER NO OBLIGATION TO ANY FORM OF GOD'S REVEALED WILL AS WE NATURALLY PERCEIVE IT OR ARE CAPABLE OF ATTEMPTING ITS FULFILMENT IN NATURAL STRENGTH, MENTAL OR PHYSICAL. Instead, we are simply under the law of the Spirit of Life ( - "law" here refers simply to the way something operates. We live by the operation of the Spirit of Life in our new man).[xlv][45]

     This is what our salvation by grace is all about in principle.

"...LET US ALSO WALK IN THE SPIRIT."

 

     But there is the progressive side of our salvation in which our new Law-fulfilling, righteous nature has to be worked out through who we yet are in the flesh.[xlvi][46]  In our flesh remains a law (principle) of sin.[xlvii][47]  Because of this lawlessness remaining in our flesh, our flesh remains under a certain natural consciousness of the Law[xlviii][48] even though we are in principle no longer under the Law. To avoid confusion, let's call this remaining consciousness of Law the "word of law", or simply "the word"[xlix][49]  (Not to be confused with the Living Word of Christ in our new nature).

    The" word" exposes remaining sin in our flesh the same way the Law exposed the sin that we WERE before we were converted. The word is brought to us both through the Scriptures with all its injunctions and ordinances, and also by personal commands and promises of the Holy Spirit as they surface on the screen of our fleshly mind.

      As the word exposes what lawlessness remains in our flesh, we release the Spirit of Life to take our in-principle righteousness and work it through our flesh to crucify the lawlessness.[l][50]  By this the Spirit translates our inward holiness into complete outward holiness. As we encounter each word, each principle, each ordinance of Scripture that exposes some remaining lawlessness in our flesh, the Spirit works out our inwardly completed salvation into living reality here and now.

     Once the Spirit has worked-through our salvation in the flesh against some form of lawlessness, then we are no longer lawbreakers or "wordbreakers"  - not only in principle, but now in practice as well. When this happens, we become delivered from even the natural consciousness of the word. We don't have to think about it. Its righteousness is now a part of us. It no longer applies to us even in the flesh! Our life becomes a free flow in the Spirit.

      As long as we have remaining natural consciousness of word of law, it is because we have some remaining form of flesh disobedience to be crucified. The word of law is therefore a disciplinary tool of the Spirit much like training wheels on a bicycle. As we use  training wheels to turn our fleshly imbalance into skill, the Spirit uses the word to turn our remaining imbalances of soul into skilled character, a vessel meet for the unhindered flow of our inward righteousness.  And if our bodies don't wear out before our souls reach perfection (a nearly unheard of phenomena), our bodies can immediately put on immortality and never see death.[li][51]

 

     To capsulize, then. By our salvation-in-principal, we are slaves become sons. By our salvation-in-practice, we are children becoming adults.[lii][52]

     In the first, the Law is a force of bondage and curse from which to be delivered once and for all. In the second, the word (of law) is a tool of discipline from which to be increasingly freed as the Spirit weaves its righteousness into our being.

     In the first, we have been made righteous. In the second, we are made to express the righteousness we have been made.

     In the first, to "live by grace" has a meaning in the pure sense. It refers to who we are within because of what Christ did. In the second, to "live by grace" has a meaning in the applied sense. It refers to who we are becoming without as we release the Spirit to kill sin exposed by the word until our intrinsic grace nature can supplant it.

     To understand this two-fold nature of our salvation is to understand why we have a certain limited dealing with a form of law after we are in-principle taken out from under all Law at our conversion.

______________________________

 

     Our righteousness by grace has no practical effect until the Spirit has killed fleshly sin to make way for its expression. But the Spirit doesn't kill sin apart from our natural awareness of  it. And our natural awareness comes through a word of law concerning that sin. Therefore to preach grace before the word of law has made us conscious of the sin from which our grace will save us is to reinforce our sin. To illustrate, a child's intrinsic freedom to ride a bike has no meaning to him until his sense of balance has been instilled through training wheels. To merely say to him, "You are free to ride! You are free to ride!" only reinforces his inability to do so. He is free in the sense that he is not locked in his room! But that freedom is of no profit to him until by discipline he learns how to express it through a sense of balance.

 

     Using the same analogy, once balance is not a problem for a child and the training wheels have instilled his discipline, it is folly to leave them on the bicycle. They must come off. If they are left on, they no longer help but hinder, and may even cause a crash. The child can certainly "earn" no further riding ability by keeping them on. Similarly, once we are aware of fleshly sin by the discipline of the word, THEN WE PREACH GRACE. We release the Spirit to kill that exposed sin so our grace-righteousness may flow, making our salvation effective in our flesh. We don't use the word of law further. It's job is done. The flesh can't rid itself of its sin by trying to keep the word. All the flesh can do by the word is spin dead works. To keep preaching the command once we are aware of the sin is to TRY TO LIVE BY THE LAW. No. This is where we let grace take over.

 

     The spiritual art of rightly dividing God's Word pertaining to holiness hinges on right spiritual discernment of this issue.

The great debacle in the Church over righteousness is due to failure to rightly discern when to install and remove spiritual training wheels. Many who recognize their freedom from the Law fail to deal with fleshly lawlessness through the discipline of the word of law. Preaching grace to their flesh, they reinforce its sinfulness.[liii][53] Many others who recognize their fleshly lawlessness fail to recognize their intrinsic freedom from all Law in principle. Long after they should have left behind the word of law to express that freedom, they continue spinning to themselves dead works and holding others in bondage to their legalism. Instead of releasing the Spirit to kill what has been exposed, they try somehow to perfect their flesh themselves. They only succeed in exacerbating their awareness of sin and make life miserable for themselves.

 

 

Now Back to Paul

 

     If we understand the context in which we still have a certain dealing with law after we are converted, then we can understand why Paul said to the Thessalonians "If any man will not work, neither shall he eat." Paul was not abrogating the message of Jesus who delivered us from the Law of Work. He was ministering a word of discipline to deal with a manifestation of laziness in their flesh. Once disciplined in it, they could walk in the complete grace of salvation they already possessed from the Law of Work.

 

     In principle, the Thessalonians were not subject to the Law of Work. In principle, they were the "industriousness of God in Christ." But in their flesh, they were particularly subject to the unexposed weakness of laziness ("busybodies").[liv][54] They were what we would today call "welfare cases". They were ignorant of the standard of God's righteousness (by the Law of Work) which requires industriousness.

 

     Before these Thessalonians could walk in the grace of their internal righteousness of Christ's industriousness, their fleshly laziness had to be exposed by a word of discipline so that the Spirit could deal with it. In order to walk in the complete grace of Spirit-empowered labour, they had to have that grace worked out under the discipline of the word of natural labour. The words "Labour not for the meat that perishes" had no meaning for them. Because of undisciplined  laziness they didn't know how to labour, period. Such words could only be interpreted by them to mean, "Labour not!". They would only reinforce their basic laziness.

 

     That is why Paul told these people to work. He didn't put them back under Law. He put them under discipline until their intrinsic freedom from the Law of Work could have meaning and could find expression through them.

 

      This particular preponderance toward laziness seems to have been common to certain of the Greek people. The Cretians had a reputation for being "slowbellies". [lv][55]  For this cause Paul warned Titus to put them under the same discipline as the Thessalonians. Today you can go to places like Haiti, Mexico, and other third world nations where this same form of lawlessness prevails. Before you can tell people like this to walk in grace from the dead works of earning a living, their flesh has to be disciplined through the knowledge of the Law of Work. Otherwise you reinforce their laziness.

 

     But for a people who are already conscious of the evil of laziness by their knowledge of the Law of Work and whose flesh is disciplined thereby, that Law has no more relevance! Once the Law has exposed lawlessness, it has done its job. It is not given for a people to obey through dead works. It is given that the Spirit may fulfil its righteousness through them by the indwelling life of Christ. That righteousness is ultimately fulfilled outside the entire framework of human economy. As Christians, if by our awareness of the word the Spirit has worked laziness out of our flesh, it is time for us to move into the complete grace of Jesus' words, "Labour not for the meat that perishes." At that point, Paul's injunction to work HAS NO MORE RELEVANCE.

 

Different Strokes For Different Folks

 

     Paul and Jesus were addressing two different types of people. Paul addressed certain Greeks who had a predisposition to laziness. By contrast, Jesus addressed industrious Jews. These people were thoroughly conscious of the evil of sloth and prided themselves on their industrious dead works under the Law of Work. They knew nothing of God's grace or the true purpose for the Law. They counted their own efforts to fulfil the Law by "hard work" as righteousness. God counted it as "dead work". The Jews needed to hear the message of grace through the words "Labour not for the meat that perishes." They needed to move into the grace of Spirit-led labour above the Law of Work.

 

     As it is evil to preach grace to a people who still have to have their lawlessness exposed by word of law, it is equally evil to preach the word of law to people who have been disciplined by it, shutting them  up unto dead works.[lvi][56]  This brings us to the crux of our problem today concerning Paul's words to the Thessalonians. Most of the readers of this article are Christians who already know how to "earn a living" under the Law of Work. You have been raised amidst an industrious nation governed by the "puritan work ethic". The consciousness of the evil of sloth is fully engrained into you. Because this is so, PAUL'S RESTATEMENT OF THE LAW OF WORK HAS NO APPLICATION TO YOU.

 

     But the reason it is an issue for you is because of your own unbelief in failing to move into the complete salvation from the works of the Law. You have used Paul's word to justify serving God and mammon at the same time. You persist in your dead works under the word of law and in holding back others.[lvii][57] You have failed to rightly divide God's word by your unbelief and therefore the word of scripture is become your stumblingblock.[lviii][58]


The Rest of the Story

 

    If you are going to try to use Paul's injunction to keep the Church shut up from entering the fullness of grace that is ours in Christ Jesus, you need to consider the rest of the context in which Paul's word was given.

 

     In the same chapter (II Thess. 3), Paul alluded to the fact that he himself was technically free to live by grace outside the Law of Work.[lix][59]  He specifically said so in his first letter letter to the Corinthians.[lx][60]  Through His employment by the Father, Paul didn't consider himself to "work" for a living according to the world's definition. He did not consider himself bound under the dead works of the old Law.

 

     The only reason Paul "worked" (according to the Law) in these particular cases was to (1) set an example for the lazy Thessalonians,[lxi][61] and (2) prevent immature Corinthians from using their hospitality against him later to blunt the force of his correction. They might say, "Who are you to bite the hand that fed you?"[lxii][62]  (In light of Jesus' example, Paul wasn't really even obligated to take this precaution, but he thought it safe.)

 

     If one tries to make a blanket unconditioned Law out of Paul's injunction to the Thessalonians, then even Paul himself would have to be judged guilty of breaking it. In order to make up what he refused to receive from the Corinthians without paying for it, he was willing to receive from other churches like the Philippians without paying for it![lxiii][63] Again, if Paul's word nullifies the word of Jesus, then Jesus was the greatest Lawbreaker of Scripture with respect to the Law of Work. He received all manner of support and favours without paying for them! Whoever tries to put himself and others under Paul's injunction as a blanket Law immediately condemns himself if he receive even one thing without paying for it - for he is obligated to keep the law without exception![lxiv][64]

 

 

The Nature of Paul's Earthly "Work"

 

     The controversy over Paul's injunction to work is much deeper than it appears. At issue is not merely whether or not a man is working, but whether or not a man's work is contributing to the building of babylonian society. To highlight the issue, let's look at the nature of Paul's own temporal employment.

 

     When Paul was labouring in visible accord with the Law of Work, he did so at a self-employed trade that left him free to keep his mobility outside the fixed economy of the Roman Empire.[lxv][65]  He worked at one place for a season. Then he quit to minister a while. Then he moved on and worked elsewhere for a matter of months. Then he would quit again, etc. Paul did not hold today what we would call a "steady job", ie, an established business of long-term interest that visibly contributed to the Roman economy.

 

     Why is this important to see? Because in determining whether a Christian is fulfilling Paul's injunction to work, the Church in America has gone far beyond the issue of whether a man is performing earthly labour. Because the Church is so wrapped up in supporting American babylonian society, those who use Paul's injunction to keep the Church bound to earthly labour do not accept that a man is working unless his work is recognized as contributing to the babylonian economy. A believer may be performing manual labour in his service for God, but if it is not steadily and visibly in support of babylonian economy, the Church will not recognize it as "work".

 

     By the Church's warped interpretation of Paul's injunction combined with its strictly babylonian definition of work, not even Paul's work would be recognized as "work". Imagine if a man today in America lived as a travelling tentmaker outside American economy, moving unpredictably from one city to the next, remaining a few weeks or months only to pass on to another place. The Church would brand him as unstable, lazy, and guilty of breaking Paul's injunction of working!

 

      Today, a Christian may take up piecemeal employment that accords with the Law of Work, performing a number of different jobs on a temporary basis. But because it is not steady and fixed in harmony with fixed society, the Church will not recognize it as fulfilling the Law. The glaring hypocrisy is this. In the babylonian definition of "work", a man such as a government bureaucrat may literally do nothing but play records all day in his office. But because he occupies a recognized position in the babylonian system, he is accepted as "working" - and the Church accepts it also!

 

                  _________________________________

 

     What is the overall point? The point is that neither Paul's life not his words can be used by the Church for remaining under the Law of Work, and especially not in terms of supporting American collective society. The only thing Paul's life shows us is that sometimes, in the course of living by grace, God allows certain of His People to "work" according to the Law of Work. BUT GOD'S PERFECT WILL IS FOR HIS PEOPLE TO LIVE BY GRACE ABOVE ALL KNOWLEDGE OF THE LAW OF WORK, ABOVE ALL SENSE OF INTERPERSONAL OBLIGATION, AND OUTSIDE THE FIXED SOCIETIES OF MEN.

 

     God wants all His People to manifest the LIFE of Jesus with respect to earthly labour. And if His People happen to be found "working" in conjunction with the Law of Work, and even inside of babylonian economy, it is to be the exception, not the rule.

 

The Right Word For Today's Church in North America

 

     What is our conclusion? The word for the North American Church today is not "If any man will not work, neither shall he eat." The word is -

        

"Labour not for the meat which perishes."

 

     The Western Church already knows how to "work" under the Law of Debt For Service Rendered. The Church is in fact a slave to dead works under the law of the "puritan work ethic". The Church is moreover enslaved to that law according to the definition of collective society.

 

     The Church prides Herself on Her dead works in support of the American Dream. The Church does not know Who She is - free to live above the Law of Work outside babylonianism.

 

     The Western Church must hear that She cannot serve God and serve Babylon under the "puritan work ethic".[lxvi][66]  She must hear that hard, physical labour is not a self-sustaining virtue in God's eyes.[lxvii][67]  He takes no more pride in dead industry than He does in lawless sloth. The self-righteousness of American labour is as abhorrent to Him as the laziness of Haiti. He is pleased only with the labour that brings us into our rest from the works of all Law.[lxviii][68]

 

     The Church needs to stop using the words of Paul to qualify the  words  of Jesus. The Church  needs  to  cease using II  Thessalonians 3:1O to persecute those who are breaking into the more perfect salvation of John 6:27. Most American Christians who do this are either pastors who do not live by the injunction and bleed their babylonian sheep for their "tithes and offerings, - or they are sheep who support such pastors. Hypocrites!

 

     The Church needs a new definition of "work". She has accepted the world's definition so long that She cannot understand God's true labour in any other way. The Church needs to see God's work from God's eyes - the true labour of Spirit that begins in our overcoming the evil forces that cloud our spiritual awareness of God - the labour that starts in absolute stillness of mind and steadfastness of spirit, requiring incredible spiritual effort and discipline.

 

     Is it not a strange irony that what God calls true work - prayer, meditation, intercession, praise and worship - the Church scoffs at as laziness? Yet She is unable to endure at these "lazy" occupations for more than but a few minutes a day. In God's eyes, the Church with Her roots sunk deep in "working" America and slaving under the Law of Work in His name - She is the sleeping sluggard. And until the Church learns to labour for that which ENDURES to eternal life, God will not recognize Her activity as work, but as sloth.

 

     Because the Church has failed to leave behind Her dead works under the Law of Work, God is going to give Her a crash course in salvation by grace. He will take Her out into the wilderness amidst world tribulation.[lxix][69]  There, cut off from all Her dead work, He will teach Her once more how to live by faith, and to receive Her manna only by His grace. In that wilderness He will work out in Her the grace He planted within Her at Calvary. Forced to labour no more for the meat that perishes, She will learn how to labour for that which endures to life eternal.

 

     The call is again clear. Let us put off our unbelief. Let us put off our religious self-justification in the name of obeying the word of God. Let us stop tripping over our self-imposed stumblingblock of Paul's injunction. Let us put off the filthy rags of the old Law and put on all the garments of grace lest we be found naked when He appears.[lxx][70]  Let us cease taking thought for that which the Gentiles seek through their rebellious civilization. Let our only obligation be to do the will of the Father. Let us eat only of the meat He provides us. Let us go in the strength of that meat outside the camp of babylonianism to fulfil the Great Commission.

 

 

     Why wait for the tribulation when we can learn now?
 

______________________________

 

References:



[i][1]  Gen 3:19                                                                    

[ii][2]  Rom 3:20; 7:7                   

[iii][3]  II Thess 3:10                                                            

[iv][4]  Gal 3:10                                                                    

[v][5]  Eccl 1:2 - 2:26                                                           

[vi][6]  Gen 4:3-5  Pr 21:4                                 

[vii][7]  Gen 3:17-19                                                                           

[viii][8]  Gal 3:13                                                                  

[ix][9]  Heb 10:26                                                                

[x][10] Heb 9:26                                                                  

[xi][11] Mt 27:29                                                                 

[xii][12] II Cor 6:2                                                                

[xiii][13] Rom 8:4                                                                

[xiv][14] Rom 6:17-18 > 8:12                                          

[xv][15] Ex 16:14ff                                                                              

[xvi][16] I Ki 17:2-16                                                           

[xvii][17] Jn 4:32                                                                  

[xviii][18] Jn 4:34                                                                 

[xix][19] Lk 10:38-42                                                                          

[xx][20] Rom 8:29                                                                               

[xxi][21] (I Jn 2:6)                                                                               

[xxii][22] Mt 6:25ff                                                                             

[xxiii][23] Mt 6:24                                                                               

[xxiv][24] Jn 6:27                                                                

[xxv][25] Mt 5:17                                                                

[xxvi][26] Lk 6:38                                                                

[xxvii][27] Lk 6:30; 12:33  Mt 10:8; 19:21    

[xxviii][28] [ex] Lk 7:36                                                     

[xxix][29] Lk 8:3                                                                                   

[xxx][30] [ex] Lk 7:40-47                                                  

[xxxi][31] Ps 24:1                                                                

[xxxii][32] Mt 17:27                                                                           

[xxxiii][33] Mt 14:15-20; 15:32-38                                 

[xxxiv][34] Heb 12:2                                                                          

[xxxv][35] Phil 2:12

[xxxvi][36] Col 3:1

[xxxvii][37] Gal 5:25

[xxxviii][38] Rom 6:14

[xxxix][39] Rom 6:6

[xl][40] I Pt 1:23  Jms 1:18 (Jn 3:3-8)

[xli][41] II Cor 5:17

[xlii][42] II Cor 5:21

[xliii][43] Gal 2:20

[xliv][44] I Tim 1:9

[xlv][45] Rom 8:2

[xlvi][46] Phil 2:12

[xlvii][47] Rom 7:23

[xlviii][48] Jms 2:8-12; 4:17

[xlix][49] Jms 1:22-25

[l][50] Rom 8:13 Col 3:3,5 Gal 5:24

[li][51] Jn 11:26

[lii][52] Gal 4:1-7 (I Jn 2:12-14)

[liii][53] Rom 6:15

[liv][54] II Thess 3:11

[lv][55] Tit 1:12-13

[lvi][56] Gal 3:3; 4:9; 5:1-4

[lvii][57] Mt 23:13

[lviii][58] Rom 9:31-32

[lix][59] II Thess 3:9

[lx][60] I Cor 9

[lxi][61] II Thess 3:9

[lxii][62] II Cor 11:7,9-10; 12:13-18

[lxiii][63] II Cor 11:8 (Phil 4:10)

[lxiv][64] Gal 5:3 Jms 2:10

[lxv][65] Acts 18:3

[lxvi][66] Mt 6:24ff

[lxvii][67] (Is 57:12)

[lxviii][68] Heb 4:1-11

[lxix][69] Rev 12:14

lxx[70] Rev 16:15