April 4, 2011 ©Homer Kizer
Commentary — From the Margins
The Lord spoke to Moses on Mount Sinai, saying, “Speak to the people of Israel and say to them, When you come into the land that I give you, the land shall keep a Sabbath to the Lord. For six years you shall sow your field, and for six years you shall prune your vineyard and gather in its fruits, but in the seventh year there shall be a Sabbath of solemn rest for the land, a Sabbath to the Lord. You shall not sow your field or prune your vineyard. You shall not reap what grows of itself in your harvest, or gather the grapes of your undressed vine. It shall be a year of solemn rest for the land. The Sabbath of the land shall provide food for you, for yourself and for your male and female slaves and for your hired servant and the sojourner who lives with you, and for your cattle and for the wild animals that are in your land: all its yield shall be for food. / You shall count seven weeks of years, seven times seven years, so that the time of the seven weeks of years shall give you forty-nine years. Then you shall sound the loud trumpet on the tenth day of the seventh month. On the Day of Atonement you shall sound the trumpet throughout all your land. And you shall consecrate the fiftieth year, and proclaim liberty throughout the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a jubilee for you, when each of you shall return to his property and each of you shall return to his clan. That fiftieth year shall be a jubilee for you; in it you shall neither sow nor reap what grows of itself nor gather the grapes from the undressed vines. For it is a jubilee. It shall be holy to you. You may eat the produce of the field. / In this year of jubilee each of you shall return to his property. And if you make a sale to your neighbor or buy from your neighbor, you shall not wrong one another. You shall pay your neighbor according to the number of years after the jubilee, and he shall sell to you according to the number of years for crops. If the years are many, you shall increase the price, and if the years are few, you shall reduce the price, for it is the number of the crops that he is selling to you. You shall not wrong one another, but you shall fear your God, for I am the Lord your God. / Therefore you shall do my statutes and keep my rules and perform them, and then you will dwell in the land securely. The land will yield its fruit, and you will eat your fill and dwell in it securely. And if you say, ‘What shall we eat in the seventh year, if we may not sow or gather in our crop?’ I will command my blessing on you in the sixth year, so that it will produce a crop sufficient for three years. When you sow in the eighth year, you will be eating some of the old crop; you shall eat the old until the ninth year, when its crop arrives. / The land shall not be sold in perpetuity, for the land is mine. For you are strangers and sojourners with me. And in all the country you possess, you shall allow a redemption of the land.” (Lev 25:1–24 emphasis added)
Part Three of this Commentary introduced a correspondence between the Passover sacraments of unleavened bread and wine with circumcision. This correspondence will be pursued.
The foundational documents of the United States of America were not inspired by God but by the Adversary, a declarative statement American Christians do not want to even consider, but nevertheless, a truism apparent in the United States of America’s Constitution; for in the second covenant made at Mt. Sinai, an eternal heavenly covenant, the Lord says,
Observe what I command you this day. Behold, I will drive out before you the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites. Take care, lest you make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land to which you go, lest it become a snare in your midst. You shall tear down their altars and break their pillars and cut down their Asherim (for you shall worship no other god, for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God), lest you make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land, and when they whore after their gods and sacrifice to their gods and you are invited, you eat of his sacrifice, and you take of their daughters for your sons, and their daughters whore after their gods and make your sons whore after their gods. (Ex 34:11–16 emphasis added)
The Establishment Clause—the First Amendment—produces a separation between God and governance by We, the People, and this separation precludes God from being a part of the governance of the United States; hence, President Obama’s statement that America is not a Christian nation is factually correct although that should not be the case … would God inspire a document that precludes Him, a document that does not promote walking uprightly before God, keeping His commandments? No, He wouldn’t. As a jealous God, He temporarily accepts that His people worship demons and the works of their hands (and will continue to do so throughout the Affliction — Rev 9:20), claiming that such worship is of Him, the Most High. But God will only accept the idolatry of Christendom until Sin completes the work it has to do in causing Christians to be appalled by the ways of the world; i.e., the ways of Satan.
God tells Noah, “‘[Y]ou shall not eat flesh with its life, that is, its blood’” (Gen 9:4) … life is in the blood.
When Jesus blessed the Cup and gave it to His disciples, He said, “‘Drink of it, all of you, for this is my blood [my life] of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins’” (Matt 26:27–28) … forgiveness of sin lies in Jesus’ life.
The first Adam—the first man—called his wife Eve, a name that sounds in Hebrew like the linguistic icon for life-giver and resembles the Hebrew icon for living … to Timothy, the Apostle wrote, “For Adam was formed first, then Eve, and Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and became a transgressor. Yet she will be saved through childbearing” (1 Tim 2:13–15).
Sin did not enter the world via Eve, but by Adam knowingly choosing to not believe God and eating the fruit that Eve ate (cf. Rom 5:12; Gen 2:16–17; 3:6).
Through the connection between life being in the blood, the forgiveness of sin coming via Jesus’ blood, and Jesus being the last Adam, a life-giving spirit (1 Cor 15:45), the blessed wine of the Passover sacraments covers sins and gives life in a manner analogous to how Eve gave life to all of humankind. In wine [as opposed to grape juice], naturally-occurring yeast on the grapes skins has done its work; so when yeast represents sin and grapes represent human persons (see Rev 14:19), wine represents people after sin has done its work in processing the natural fruit of the Promised Land (see Deut 11:14) into life like that which Jesus had. Thus, as the first Eve has given life to the fleshly bodies of all humankind and has thereby been saved physically via childbirth, the last Eve—the Christian Church—will be saved through childbirth and the forgiveness of sin when She brings forth a nation in a day (Isa 66:7–8). Therefore, it can be faithfully said that the broken unleavened bread of the Passover sacraments that represents the body of Christ Jesus also represents the Man who is without sin either through having his sins covered by the righteousness of Christ Jesus or through covering himself with his own obedience once the Son of Man is disrobed (i.e., stripped of the garment of Christ, grace). The wine in the blessed Cup that represents the blood of Christ Jesus also represents the Woman, the Christian Church, who will be saved through childbirth when She gives birth to a spiritual Cain and Abel at the beginning of the seven endtime years of tribulation, then gives birth to spiritual Seth, the third part of humankind (see Zech 13:9), halfway through these seven endtime years. Sin will have done its work on all of humankind during the endtime years of tribulation.
God will deliver all Christians into the hand of the little horn—the Adversary who is then possessing a human person—for the destruction of the flesh at the beginning of the seven endtime years of tribulation (see Dan 7:25): after filling Christians with His breath [pneuma Theon] and thereby liberating them from indwelling Sin and Death, God will deliver all Christians into the hand of the Adversary so that Sin can do its work of trying to recover these Christians who have been freed from Sin through no work of their own … the greatest jailbreak of all time will occur when God springs Christendom out from servitude to the present prince of this world through suddenly taking the lives of uncovered firstborns and baptizing all Christians who honor the resurrection of Christ Jesus in His breath, which will function as a watery escape by Christians from enslavement by the Adversary. Sin will be separated from Death, and both of these demonic kings—the King of the South (Sin) and the King of the North (Death)—along with their cohorts, the False Prophet (the King of the West) and Abaddon (the King of the East, the angel of the Abyss), will pursue escaping Christendom, and will within 220 days capture virtually all Christians, thus condemning their captives to the second death, the lake of fire.
The M.O. of the Lord has been consistent throughout the history of Israel; for the Lord said to the prophet Ezekiel, “‘Moreover, I gave them [the children of Israel] statutes that were not good and rules by which they could not have life, and I defiled them through their very gifts in their offering up all their firstborn, that I might devastate them. I did it that they might know that I am the Lord’” (20:25–26).
When the Lord took the fathers of Israel by the hand to lead the nation out from Egypt, the Lord made a separation between Egypt, the representation of sin, and His firstborn son (Ex 4:22). That separation began with the fourth plague, when the houses of Egyptians were filled with flies but the houses of Israel in Goshen saw no flies (Ex 8:21–23), and that separation was complete when death struck the firstborn of Egyptian people and livestock but passed over the houses of the people of Israel where the blood of a paschal lamb was smeared on doorposts and lintels.
Today, prior to the Second Passover liberation of Israel from indwelling sin and death, a separation between the people of this world and Christians also exists, but this separation is invisible for it pertains to whether the inner self of the person has been raised from death or remains dead, its natural state … as the natural state of angelic sons of God is as living ministering spirits, the natural state of the inner person of a human being is death; hence angels are temporarily above humankind for angels have life in the heavenly realm [i.e., life outside of the visible creation] whereas human persons are humanly born with no life other than that which comes via the oxidation of simple carbohydrates at the cellular level. Therefore, before the possibility even exists of a human person entering the dark portions of the Creation [where dark matter and dark energy exist], the person must first receive life that is not physical: the person must be born of God through receiving a second breath of life, the breath of God [pneuma Theon]. And when born of God through receiving the Holy Spirit [pneuma hagion], the inner self of the person is resurrected from death and passes from death to life without coming under judgment (John 5:24). This now-living inner self has life as a son of God in the heavenly realm, where his unbelief is covered by the righteousness of Christ Jesus, that is the garment of grace.
The father of the fleshly body of every human person is the first Adam, but the Father of the living inner self of a disciple is the Most High God. Thus, in giving to a person a second breath of life, God has instigated a turf war inside the person for control over the actions of hands and body. And it is this turf war about which the Apostle Paul writes:
What then shall we say? That the law is sin? By no means! Yet if it had not been for the law, I would not have known sin. For I would not have known what it is to covet if the law had not said, “You shall not covet.” But sin, seizing an opportunity through the commandment, produced in me all kinds of covetousness. For apart from the law, sin lies dead. I was once alive apart from the law, but when the commandment came, sin came alive and I died. The very commandment that promised life proved to be death to me. For sin, seizing an opportunity through the commandment, deceived me and through it killed me. So the law is holy, and the commandment is holy and righteous and good. / Did that which is good, then, bring death to me? By no means! It was sin, producing death in me through what is good, in order that sin might be shown to be sin, and through the commandment might become sinful beyond measure. For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am of the flesh, sold under sin. For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. Now if I do what I do not want, I agree with the law, that it is good. So now it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. / So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin. (Rom 7:7–25 emphasis and double-emphasis added)
Again, the Lord tells the prophet Ezekiel, that He, the Lord, gave the children of Israel statutes that were not good and rules by which they could not have life, that He defiled them through their very gifts in their offering up all their firstborn, that He might devastate them so that they might know that He is the Lord … the same M.O. is present in Paul saying that the commandments were given to Israel to bring Sin to life so that Sin might slay Israel so that Sin could be seen as the evil that it is, repulsing the firstborn son of God so that Israel would flee Sin as Moses fled from Pharaoh—the earthly representative of Sin, the king of the South—after he slew the Egyptian (Ex 2:13–14).
By serving the law of God in his mind while his flesh served Sin, Paul describes the turf war that originated within him when he received a second breath of life … the Second Passover liberation of Israel will move this war between Sin—the ways of this world—and the Law outside of the fleshly body of the Christian. The Christian will be given [will become the true beneficiary of] Christ Jesus’ victory over Sin. And all the Christian then has to do to be saved is endure to the end, with the Christian’s end coming either via physical death during the seven endtime years or through glorification upon Christ Jesus’ return at the conclusion of these seven years of tribulation. But enduring will not be easy: just as fighting against the desires of the flesh [the indwelling law of Sin] is not today easy, what Paul acknowledges, fighting to live by every word of God will also not be easy for as long as the Adversary remains the prince of this world, and he will remain the prince of this world until dominion over the single kingdom of this world is given to the Son of Man (Dan 7:9–14; Rev 11:15–18).
Again, Sin has a work to do, that of causing Sin to be shown as sin and sinful beyond measure, thereby causing the human son of God to flee Sin as Moses fled from Pharaoh. But frankly, the Adversary has sought to thwart God by making sin so desirable and attractive that even Christians are enticed by the ways of this world. The Adversary dangled republicanism before 18th-Century men of integrity, and they bit, swallowing the Adversary’s bait hook, line, and sinker, a trite phrase that best expresses just how deeply hooked America’s founding fathers were hooked into the ways of the Adversary and his advocacy of democratic rule.
The Adversary dangled economic prosperity and the frontier before 19th-Century Americans, and they bit, hooking themselves just as firmly as America’s founding fathers had: as if they were steelhead, they hastily strung lines across the continent, their initial runs having the strength of large fish in small streams, searun rainbows determined and strong, silver bright—Christians missionaries preached a silver gospel [i.e., the gospel according to the demonic kings of Persia] around the world.
Two world wars and several decades of American progressivism caused the Adversary to change baits in the 1960s: the Adversary dangled rebellion against authority in all forms before my generation, and we bit. Although I didn’t bite into sex and drugs as many [most] of my peers did, I bit into rebellion against game laws: I became a poacher, living off the land and outside of the law. What began as true necessity—at sixteen, I was legally on my own, an emancipated minor, with a rifle and no support and America’s child labor laws prohibiting employers from hiring me—but ceased to be a necessity when I turned eighteen, and became, instead, a way of life, taking game (never wasting a deer or a fish I could recover) as I needed the meat, I shopped with a rifle until I left Oregon for Alaska in 1974, and I had to learn respect for the law after I received a second breath of life.
For most Americans who came to maturity in the 1960s and since, sex has been the Adversary’s most effective lure … today, even Christian women appear in public looking like they are shopping for men as they troll their uncovered heads and scantily clothed bodies through the work places of the nation—and men are no better if not worse as they buy casual sexual liaisons for the price of a hamburger. Marriage as an institution—as a sacrament of God—has ceased to have any meaning for both parents and young adults: girls live with boys and boys live with girls, often in the homes of one of their parents. Shacked-up couples have children, thus raising the next generation of Americans to place little value on the sacrament of marriage: children are born and Food Stamps are collected without the benefit of marriage, and when two young Americans do marry, the date for their marriage is two or more years in the future, all the while the couple sleeps in the same bed.
Sin is no longer recognized as sin. Fornication is no longer deemed sinful. The Law has been lost. And it would seem as if the Adversary has defeated God, but long ago, the endgame—how this age will end—was written in the blood of firstborns: all of the above, the fornication and prostituting of Christian women, is about to change, for humankind worldwide can get no farther from God than it presently is … when the Sabbatarian Christian community cannot recognize a swindler, but invites the man to eat with the community, God’s deliverance of Christendom into the hand of the Adversary after baptizing every Christian in His holy breath will very shortly occur. There no longer is any Christian community that is truly of God. All that remains is one or two disciples here and there that have not yet bowed before the Adversary.
With Moses, separation of Moses from his people coupled with embedding Moses in Pharaoh’s household worked to produce the good that God intended. But Israel and the children of Israel in the wilderness, as the left hand enantiomer of endtime Christians after the Second Passover liberation of Israel, never walked uprightly before the Lord, never ceased profaning the Sabbaths of the Lord—
From the beginning, it has been the intention of the Most High to have mercy upon all of humankind, thereby liberating all of humanity from servitude to the Adversary … this liberation from the ways of this world will be done to Christians, and done against the will of most Christians who are satisfied with their present spirituality. And the sudden removal of Christians from the ways of this world through baptizing Christians in the breath of God, thereby filling them with spirit [pneuma Theon], changing their mental landscapes through writing the Torah on their hearts and placing it within them (Heb 8:10; Jer 31:33), changing their human natures from desiring to buy and sell (the production of the Adversary) to being content with what they have—the sudden liberation of Christianity from bondage to the Adversary will not be welcomed by Christians, but will be resented, and with every few exceptions, Christians will flock back to the Adversary, taking Sin inside themselves when no sacrifice remains for Sin, and these Christians will form the mirror image of the third part of humankind (from Zech 13:9) that when filled with spirit will embrace the Lord and strive to keep His commandments.
The Adversary remains the prince of the power of the air (from Eph 2:2) … how destructive can air be? Is not the damage done by a hurricane or by a tornado caused by moving air? What is the real difference between a tornado ripping through a Christian’s home, destroying everything but the Christian’s life, and what happened to Job?
Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them. The Lord said to Satan, “From where have you come?” Satan answered the Lord and said, “From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking up and down on it.” And the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, who fears God and turns away from evil?” Then Satan answered the Lord and said, “Does Job fear God for no reason? Have you not put a hedge around him and his house and all that he has, on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. But stretch out your hand and touch all that he has, and he will curse you to your face.” And the Lord said to Satan, “Behold, all that he has is in your hand. Only against him do not stretch out your hand.” So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord. (Job 1:6–12)
This is being written after tornados have shredded the lives of a great many American Christians, who, like Job, give thanks to God for sparing their lives even though the lives of their equally righteous neighbors were not spared. These American Christians will assemble together on Sunday morning to give honor and respect to the Most High, but by simply assembling in a worship service on Sunday morning, they show God that sin has not yet done its work in their lives, that more work remains to be done: these American Christians do not comprehend the most elementary principle of Christendom, no person can enter heaven before Sin has completed its work of being shown to be sinful, thereby causing the Christian to flee Sin and turn to God and walk uprightly before Him via keeping the commandments by faith.
The Sabbath comes on the seventh day of a seven day cycle,
Observe the Sabbath day, to keep it holy, as the Lord your God commanded you. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, you or your son or your daughter or your male servant or your female servant, or your ox or your donkey or any of your livestock, or the sojourner who is within your gates, that your male servant and your female servant may rest as well as you. You shall remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and the Lord your God brought you out from there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm. Therefore the Lord your God commanded you to keep the Sabbath day. (Deut 5:12–15)
Sin also has six days to do its work: Sin will do no work in the Millennium. Throughout the thousand years, humankind will not be consigned to disobedience, but rather, every person will be humanly born filled-with and empowered by the breath of God. Thus, Sin cannot again do its work until Satan is loosed for a short while [three and a half years] after the thousand years (Rev 20:7–10).
Because even tornados destroying all that some American Christians have is not enough to cause these Christians to rethink their relationship with Christ Jesus: their faith is like an Egyptian obelisk, like the Washington Monument, a phallic symbol, erect and hard, proud and defiant, unbroken by the loss of things and by loss of lives close to them. Their faith has them flipping God the bird. So God will permit the Adversary to have another crack at their faith as Satan had a second crack at Job’s faith: the Most High God will deliver these Christians into the hand of the Adversary for the destruction of their flesh:
Again there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them to present himself before the Lord. And the Lord said to Satan, “From where have you come?” Satan answered the Lord and said, “From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking up and down on it.” And the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, who fears God and turns away from evil? He still holds fast his integrity, although you incited me against him to destroy him without reason.” Then Satan answered the Lord and said, “Skin for skin! All that a man has he will give for his life. But stretch out your hand and touch his bone and his flesh, and he will curse you to your face.” And the Lord said to Satan, “Behold, he is in your hand; only spare his life.” (Job 2:1–6)
Will an American Christian give all he or she has for the preservation of the Christian’s fleshly body? Will a Southern Baptist be baptized as a Mormon so that he or she can eat to live another day? With few exceptions, Baptists and Catholics have not prepared for a soon-coming crisis where food will not be available to be purchased. But for the past half century, Latter Days Saints, capitalizing on what their prophet told them in 1937, about being prepared, having on hand their needs for a year, have made plans to leverage food into discipleship. Instead of preparing, many Evangelical and Charismatic Christians anticipate being bodily raptured to heaven when the endtime years begin, but they believe a lie, one of the worst ever told, and by not being prepared to shelter in situ, they will be easy prey for Sin and Death when these two demonic kings come seeking them.
Sin, the spiritual King of the South and third horseman of the Apocalypse, will, when Christendom is liberated at the Second Passover, lurk at the door of every Christian: those who are of spiritual Cain will invite Sin into their freshly cleansed bodies, and Sin shall remain in their bodies [houses of flesh] until it consumes both the inner and outer self. In this way. Sin does the work of the flying scroll [book] the prophet Zechariah saw in vision (see Zech 5:1–4): this flying book is the curse that goes out over the face of the whole land. For everyone who steals shall be cleaned out according to what is on one side, and everyone who swears shall be cleaned out according to what is on the other side. And this flying book represents the curse with which Sabbatarian Christians—those who swear they are of God—will be cursed for receiving and supporting swindlers, idolaters, and the sexually immoral, beginning with allegedly essential endtime men and women of God. This flying book will enter the bodies of those Sabbatarians who have received men such as Norman Scott Edwards where it will remain to consume them, physically and spiritually.
In His sermon on the mount, Jesus said, “‘Let what you say be simply “Yes” or “No”; anything more that this comes from the evil one’” (Matt 5:37) … the Christian who swears, the Christian who swears falsely, the Christian who declares that he or she is of God when the Christian has not been born of God—the Christian who believes he or she does not require Sin to do its work in the Christian but that the Christian can appear before God on the first day of the week because Jesus as the Wave Sheaf Offering appeared before God and was accepted on the first day of the physical week [the fourth day of the spiritual week], this Christian is presumptuous at best and already the son of the Adversary in the worst case scenario. This Christian will be, when filled with spirit, as self-righteous as Job was. And Sin couldn’t do its work in Job.
When the Adversary attacked Job’s flesh, striking Job with “loathsome sores from the sole of his foot to the crown of his head” (Job 2:7), the man Job simply took a pottery shard and began to scrape away the stinking flesh of his body while he sat in ashes (v. 8). He neither repented of wrongdoing—the Lord told the Adversary that Job was blameless and upright in all his ways (Job 1:8; 2:3)—nor did Job curse the Lord. However, Job did curse the day of his birth.
Job knew of nothing for which he had to repent. He says that if he were to appear before the Lord, “‘I would give him an account of all my steps; / like a prince I would approach him’” (Job 31:37) … he probably would have approached the Lord as a prince, but in saying what he said, Job discloses that he doesn’t comprehend the enormity of the gulf between heaven and earth. And because Job probably would have approached as a prince, it isn’t the Adversary that can do the work that needs done in Job’s life. The Lord, Himself, has to intervene and take over the work of bringing Job into righteousness:
Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge?
Dress for action like a man;
I will question you, and you make it known to me.
Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth?
Tell me, if you have understanding.
Who determined its measurements—surely you know!
Or who stretched the line upon it?
On what were its bases sunk,
or who laid its cornerstone,
when the morning stars sang together
and all the sons of God shouted for joy? (Job 38:2–7)
God, Himself, will have to take over the work of bringing the Christian Church into righteousness midway through the seven endtime years—and He will do this by taking dominion over the single kingdom of this earth from the four demonic kings and the little horn and giving that dominion to the Son of Man, Head and Body (see Dan 7:9–14, 27; Rev 11:15–18).
Inwardly, eighth-day Christians resent Sabbatarians, both Jews and Christians. Even when filled-with and empowered by the breath of God, the majority of today’s eighth-day Christians will rebel against God and become spiritual Cain and slay their Sabbatarian brothers, thereby marking themselves with the mark of death, the tattoo of the cross, and they shall not live but shall perish during the seven endtime years as the nation of Israel that left Egypt—except for Joshua and Caleb—perished in the wilderness because of that nation’s unbelief.
The role that the Adversary’s resentment of angels being created as ministering spirits plays and has played in the course of world affairs has been greatly underappreciated. Enough is revealed about the Adversary by the prophets Isaiah and Ezekiel that certain elements of the Adversary’s personality can be ascertained, the foremost being that he was proud and thought more of himself than he ought, his pride corrupting his wisdom, with the source of his pride originating in his appearance for which he had done nothing. The Adversary took ownership of what he had been given, and pride in that ownership, pride greater than what would have come via earned accomplishments, destroyed him. And in that last clause of the preceding sentence is the flaw he, as the prince of the power of the air, broadcasts to all of humankind.
The Apostle John wrote, “Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride in possessions—is not from the Father but is from the world. And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever” (1 John 2:15–17).
The Adversary would have Christians loving and even coveting the things of this world, with the name it & claim it gospel being solely from the Adversary. However, from the Beginning, it has been the Most High’s intention to take humankind away from the Adversary and to deliver humankind to the Son of Man on the doubled day 1260 of the seven endtime years, with the Son of Man then exercising dominion over humanity through controlling the thoughts of the person in a similar way to how the Adversary today controls the thoughts of the person … the preceding means that it has been the Most High’s intention to take from humankind both desire for the things of this world as well as the appetites of the belly and loins. And when humankind no longer has a desire for the things of this world, technological development will cease: every person will be content to dwell under his or her own vine and fig tree, taking from the land the reasonable increase that the land yields. The Millennium will not be an age of technological marvels, or space exploration, or of even buying and selling. There will be neither Capitalism or Communism. There will be neither nuclear bombs or cluster bombs. There will be no great tank battles, no sniper kills of over a mile. There will be neither cell phones or solar panels. Rather wood and dung will fuel cooking fires and heat homes built from materials gathered locally: the primitivism of forefathers will return as swords are beat into plowshares and ball bearings are forged into knife blades. And the Adversary will gnash his teeth for he knows how easy it will be to deceive those human beings born into the Millennium: all he needs do is wave the technology of this age before the holy ones who have lived for a thousand years without war, murder, diseases, adultery, prostitution, drugs, hunger, poverty. The Adversary knows that he can fuel resentment in these holy ones who have done without Twitter and Facebook and social networking. He knows he can again fuel resentment in wives who have covered their hair and their breasts and have not displayed their bodies as meat to be sold in the shambles. He knows what has worked in the past, and he will again use the same tactics, the same tricks that worked in the Garden of God, both in heaven and here on earth.
Until the Father draws a particular person from the world (John 6:44, 65), no one is truly free to think long upon thoughts not allowed by the Adversary. This means in an absolute sense that no person can come to Jesus unless the Father first draws the person and Christ Jesus calls the person. Christian doctrines that have individuals making a decision for Jesus, choosing for themselves to invite Jesus into their hearts, are of the Adversary: the decision theology of Doctor Billy Graham is of the Adversary. Although Dr. Graham has spent a lifetime teaching and pasturing as a want-to-be servant of God, Dr. Graham has actually served the Adversary, which is not to say that has been his intention but is to say that is what he has done.
Any pastor or theologian who teaches that Christians are presently under the New Covenant which will have the Law written on hearts and placed in minds (again, Heb 8:10; Jer 31:33) is without spiritual understanding and is teaching without being called by God to teach, and this includes Dr. Graham … without disputing about words or doctrines, the Apostle Paul’s simple test to quickly determine whether a person teaches as a servant of God or as a minister of the Adversary remains valid: does the person teaching ask those whom he or she teaches for support, thereby placing a burden on them? If the answer is yes; if the one who teaches asks for tithes and offerings as most Christian ministers do, the person is not genuine, is not of God, and should be shunned, marked, and avoided. For Paul writes, “For such men [those who burden the holy ones] are false apostles, deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. So it is no surprise if his servants, also, disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their deeds” (2 Cor 11:13–15).
The Christian theologian or pastor who has prophesied in the name of Jesus, who has cast out demons in His name, who has done many mighty works in His name, but who has taught spiritual infants to ignore the commandments of God, especially the Sabbath commandment, has already condemned him or herself to the lake of fire (Matt 7:21–23). This theologian, like the tree from the forest the prophet Jeremiah discusses, the tree decorated with silver and gold (Jer 10:1–5), is not to be feared nor heard; this theologian has already done as much damage as he or she can do so it is not in the theologian’s hand to do greater evil nor any good. Rather, the theologian shall be cast into the lake of fire where he or she will quickly perish and be no more forever.
The Christian pastor who has taught the holy ones of God to profane the Sabbaths of God—and this includes every Seventh Day Adventist pastor, for none keep the High Sabbaths—cannot escape sudden destruction in the lake of fire unless this pastor quickly turns to God, repents, and hastily sets about attempting to undo the damage he or she has done to the holy ones. Likewise, the Sabbatarian pastor who teaches that the holy ones must utter Jesus’ name in bastardized Hebrew can do no greater harm than he or she has already done; so this Sacred Names Sabbatarian shall be cast into the lake of fire where he or she will quickly perish if this Sabbatarian doesn’t quickly turn to God, repent, and earnestly attempt to undo the damage he or she has already caused … most likely, Hebert W. Armstrong was brought from death in 1978 to strive to undo the damage he had caused through his false prophetic teachings, and to this end he diligently worked until he died in January 1986. But he couldn’t undo the damage he had caused. He couldn’t publicly admit that he, himself, was wrong when he said that the entire membership of the Worldwide Church of God (WCG) was like a train that had jumped the tracks.
At the time when Armstrong began stating that the Church had jumped the track to Christ Jesus, I was commercial fishing out of Dutch Harbor, and as I considered what he was preaching (autumn of 1979), I realized that I and everyone I knew in the former WCG were not where the person ought to be. But apparently Armstrong didn’t apply his words to himself; for he, too, wasn’t where he should have been … whether he ever repented is between him and God. I have no need to know, nor does anyone else, especially those disciples who contend that in his early years he was guilty of sexual immorality. If he was, I had no knowledge of that guilt, nor even heard rumors of it. I did, however, have a problem with Garner Ted, a problem that I prayed about daily for years. And I met a much humbled GTA in summer 2001, a man who had been brought (perhaps unwillingly) to repentance.
Again, the work that Sin has to do in every Christian is to bring that Christian to true repentance, where the sinfulness of Sin repulses the Christian and cause him or her to flee Sin, thereby keeping the commandments—all of them, not eight or nine—by faith. And what I observed about GTA in 2001 was humbling unto repentance. Whether that humbling came too late for him remains a matter between himself and Christ Jesus.
What I don’t observe in, say, Norman Scott Edwards is any humbling: he remains a swindler, justified in his own eyes, deceitful and unrepentant. Hence, he has not been brought back into the assembly of the Lord, and those who receive/support him are cursed with the curse of the flying scroll/book.
An American infant born anytime in the past century was born shackled to indebtedness that can never be paid. When this inherited indebtedness is coupled to a crumbling national infrastructure and generations of Americans believing they are entitled to the benefits of a social safety network, the nation that has been the world’s only superpower has become the world’s once-rich uncle that is still feared but widely despised for the handwriting is on the wall: a reckoning is at hand, for American cities cannot feed themselves, or even dispose of the waste they generate. American cannot afford its own way of life. America cannot afford green energy or its own clean air standards. To live as American intellectuals would have the nation live necessarily means a national reduction of the population by forty percent and permanent destruction of American cities; yet if America were to vigorously exploit its internal wealth and resources, the nation would continue to support its present population and a modified form of its present life style for at least another century.
But in the course of human history what is a century?
The present lifestyle of Americans will end within a very short while, what political conservatives fear. Either the American lifestyle will be modified through the scaling back of social safety net programs, or America as a republic—as a new world order—will utterly cease to exist. And the latter will be the case, but not for the reasons that Conservatives fear or for reasons Progressives will applaud. God has more to say about whether America and the world will continue as it has been proceeding than either Democrats or Republicans, Capitalists or Communists, Islamic fundamentalists or Zionists … if the Second Passover liberation of Israel occurs this year, a reasonable possibility, with the second Passover—the 15th of Iyyar—being on May 19th, then as of May 19th, the world as we know it will suddenly cease to be.
America’s unsustainable pursuit of the finer things of life will vanish in a day, and Americans will suddenly be focused on burying their dead, with survival itself being in jeopardy. Most Americans, most Muslims and Jews, most atheists and Buddhists will have no idea why this person died and that person did not; i.e., why the living live and the dead are all biological or legal firstborns. Human beings are simply not willing to accept the premise that God would take the lives of firstborns without warning and without apparent cause. Even for Christians, despite their protestations to the contrary, God simply doesn’t exist. God is an intangible construct—a cultural trickster figure—through which people express higher aspirations and an absence of moral ambiguity … President Obama doesn’t believe that God exists, or that God has consigned all of humankind to disobedience [sold into sin] so that He could have mercy on all. George Soros doesn’t believe that God exists, for no deity would permit (according to human reasoning) a Hitler to do what he did. Glenn Beck, for all of his proclaimed spirituality, doesn’t believe God: although Beck will believe that God exists, he doesn’t believe anything God has said. If he did, he would not attempt to enter into God’s presence on the day after the Sabbath. He would not urge American zealots to support a constitutional republic. He would instead pray for, Thy kingdom come (Matt 6:10), which would put an end to all forms of democratic governance.
Let the person who remains the property of the Adversary attempt to keep the commandments of God, especially the Sabbath commandment: the person simply, will not keep the commandments even though there is no physical thing preventing the person from keeping them. What prevents the person from believing God and transforming this belief into obedience to God is the person’s own mind—and the person will deny that he or she has any need to keep the Sabbath, the test commandment.
Let an American attempt to escape the massive Federal debt with which America’s elected leaders have enslaved the present generation and future generations: the American cannot escape economic slavery, cannot buy his or her liberty, cannot invest in gold and silver to avoid being sold down the river …
The person who remains the slave of the Adversary—while professing liberty for all and believing in his or her heart that the person is truly free from bondage to legalism—simply will not keep the commandments and indeed cannot (Rom 8:7), with the person’s inability to keep the commandments expressed through a variety of justifications and excuses, all of which disclose the reality that the person remains in mental bondage to Sin and Death, the spiritual kings of the South and the North that are together until the Second Passover liberation of Israel. And how better to keep a slave from attempting escape than to convince the slave that he or she is already free?
The foundational documents of the United States of American claim that an unalienable right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness exists, with this right coming from God—and that is simply false. To state that human beings are naturally born with an unalienable right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness reflects American servitude to the Adversary; for the unredeemed person who is a biological or legal firstborn will perish in an instant when the Second Passover liberation of Israel occurs. The Lord will take this person’s life because the Lord can and because the Lord has a prior claim to the person’s life: the Lord exercised His claim to the lives of all human beings in the days of Noah and exercised His claim to the lives of firstborns in the days of Moses, and He will again exercise His claim to the lives of firstborns and to the lives of all human beings during the seven endtime years of tribulation … the reversal of the order of presentation is correct! The Lord first claimed the lives of air-breathing, land creatures in the days of Noah, with only the righteous entering the Ark. Then of the descendants of the righteous, the Lord claimed the lives of the firstborn of man and beast in Egypt, the geographical representation of Sin, that were not covered by the blood of a paschal lamb—and it is this order that will be reversed at the end of the age: the Lord will claim the lives of all uncovered firstborn sons of man and God in heaven and on earth, then will claim the lives of all creatures when dominion over the single kingdom of this world is given to the Son of Man and the world is baptized in spirit, the breath of God (Joel 2:28; Matt 3:11). Then even the animal natures of the great predators will be taken from them and they will be given other natures (Isa 11:6–9). So too will human nature be taken from human beings; for during the millennial reign of Christ Jesus, every person through being filled with spirit will have the mind and nature of Christ.
Noah and Moses, together, form the non-symmetrical mirror image [the left hand enantiomer] of Christ Jesus during the seven endtime years … Noah and the seven with him form the shadow and type of the glorified Jesus and the angels to the seven churches during the seven endtime years. Moses and Aaron in the wilderness form the shadow and type of the two witnesses in the Affliction, the first 1260 days of the seven endtime years, and form the shadow and type of the glorified Christ and the Remnant (from Rev 12:17) in the Endurance, the last 1260 days of the seven years of tribulation.
The present thoughts of a Christian—the person’s present evil nature—will be taken from the Christian when he or she is filled-with and empowered by the breath of God [pneuma Theon] at the Second Passover. The same thing will happen to the remainder of humankind when the single kingdom of this world is given to the Son of Man halfway through the seven endtime years. Every person’s memory will remain, but how the person thinks, what is important to the person, the goals and present aspirations of the person will only exist as memories; for the person will suddenly and instantly become a different person when the Torah is written on hearts and placed in the minds. The preceding is correct: a person doesn’t own his or her thoughts. For the Adversary to take ownership of his beauty and mind is an affront to God, his creator. For a person to claim ownership of his or her mind is an affront to God. A person has the mind that he or she possesses not because of anything the person has done, but because that mind was given to the person through genetics coupled to human nature that God can take from the person at any time as He took Nebuchadnezzar's human nature from him for seven years.
At the Second Passover liberation of Israel, the world will suddenly become a very different place. Not only will the thoughts and natures of Christians be instantly altered through the Law being written on hearts and placed in minds, but the world in which these Christians live will also be suddenly altered through the death of a third of humanity, all biological and legal firstborns. Again, God has a claim to the lives of all firstborns, and God has required that Israel redeem its firstborns every since the days of Moses (see Ex 13:1), with Christ Jesus today being the Redeemer of Israel, meaning that if a firstborn doesn’t take the Passover sacraments on the night that Jesus was betrayed (the dark portion of the 14th of Aviv), with the sacraments of unleavened bread and wine representing the body and blood of Jesus, the firstborn stands before God unredeemed, destined to perish as the firstborns of Egyptians perished at the midnight hour of the night when Israel in Egyptian sacrificed and ate their paschal lambs. And the chaos resulting from the sudden death of two billion firstborns will cause the interior landscapes [mental landscapes] of Christians to reflect their exterior reality: interior and exterior worlds will be united. Confusion and contrition will reign. Humanity will first ask, then demand why God has slain so many without any apparent warning—and the vast majority of Christians will join the remainder of humankind in rebellion against God for the last three years of the Affliction. These rebelling Christians will continue in their rebellion against God throughout the Endurance, the last 1260 days. They will determine their own fate, but prophecy reveals that they are destined for destruction as vessels of wrath, prepared beforehand by the Adversary whom they worship as their god. They will never cease worshiping demons.
The traditions of the Roman Church, of Latter Day Saints, of Seventh Day Adventists—all stand opposed to God, with their firstborns being unredeemed and subject to death on the day of the Second Passover liberation of Israel.
The foundational documents of the United States of America, carefully crafted by men of good will but by men living in open rebellion against God—any Christian who worships on Sunday, keeps Christmas and Easter, practices rebellion against God for this Christian has mingled the sacred with the profane and has called his or her toxic concoction Christianity—represents well-articulated advocacy for self-rule, the theological principle underlying the ideological location of Satan’s throne here on earth. America and New York City (NYC) in particular serves as the epicenter for the Adversary’s earthly rebellion against the Most High. Plus, for the past two years or longer the future man of perdition has day-by-day broadcast his enthusiasm for human self-rule by radio and by night on television from NYC: this future lawless one (from 2 Thess 2:3) is presently “lawless” and as such forms the shadow and type of himself after the fifth seal is removed (Rev 6:9) and he is possessed by the Adversary. He will then (when possessed) form the shadow and type of Satan being cast from heaven (Rev 12:7–10) and given the mind of a man in the Endurance.
Can a man form the shadow and type of himself? Yes, he can; for no man is today filled-with and empowered by the breath of God. If a man does in type today what he will do spiritually when empowered by the breath of God, that man today forms the shadow and type of himself after the Second Passover. If I, in being called to reread prophecy and in setting about to fulfill that calling from the day it was received, live to be empowered by the breath of God at the Second Passover, I will not stop rereading prophecy but will, in addition, deliver prophecies that have not yet been given. The same holds for the man of perdition.
The theological construction of the Second Passover liberation of Israel—like the Passover liberation of Israel from Egypt—is based upon the premise that God can do with legal and biological firstborns whatever He chooses, including taking their lives whenever He wishes as He did in the land of Egypt in the days of Moses. The ancient nation of Israel as the legal firstborn son of the Lord (Ex 4:22) belonged to the Lord to do with as He pleased, which included dragging the nation out from Egypt and commanding the nation to put away its Egyptian idols, keep His commandments, and not profane the Sabbaths of the Lord.
Christendom, as the reality of the ancient nation of Israel in Egypt, will be dragged out of sin and the activities of this world at the Second Passover just as Israel was dragged out of Egypt: Christianity will not leave sin willingly. If that were possible for Christians to leave willingly, Christians would have long ago ceased their lawless ways; hence, as a man can lead a horse to water but really cannot make the horse drink, God can liberate Christians from bondage to sin but really cannot make Christians believe Him. When God turns loose of a Christian’s nostrils, the Christian—with very few exceptions—will return to sin when no sacrifice remains for the Christian.
The ancient nation of Israel neither kept the commandments of the Lord, nor the Sabbaths after being liberated from physical slavery that served as a visible type of the invisible slavery into which every person is born. If ancient Israel would have had the commandments prior to the nation’s liberation, the nation as slaves to the Pharaoh would not have been free to keep them, but when free to keep them once Israel left Egypt, the nation didn’t. The nation couldn’t: their memory of their idolatry caused Israel to never fully leave the geographical land representing sin.
The Second Passover liberation does spiritually for Christendom what the Passover did for Israel in Egypt, and what the year of jubilee did for the children of Israel in the Promised Land … the purpose of the year of jubilee that the Lord gave to the children of Israel was to generationally end national and personal indebtedness, thereby returning freedom to the nation and to individuals: the year of jubilee would have returned the children of Israel to the status they had when they entered the Promised Land to occupy houses they hadn’t built and to harvest orchards and vineyards they hadn’t planted and fields they hadn’t cleared. The year of jubilee represented more than the land receiving a Sabbath rest, or the people resting from their labors, or the freedom inherent with being debt-free.
The Amorite and Hittite and Canaanite peoples that had previously occupied the Promised Land had no right to their lives that were taken when Israel occupied the land; nor did Israel have the right to return to Egypt where they had a surplus of onions and leeks, melons and cucumbers to eat. The decision of whether a people lived or died rested solely with the Lord, as did the decision of where the firstborn son of the Lord would dwell and how that firstborn son would live.
Israel was not free to worship the Lord however the nation chose, or to worship the gods of the Canaanite peoples the children of Israel were dispossessing. Israel did not have the liberty to choose for itself its Sabbaths or its sacrifices. Israel was not free to act however it wanted; for to rebel against the dictates of the Lord was to invite His wrath. So as the firstborn son of the Lord, Israel’s life was dictated to the nation by the Lord, with both Judaism and Christianity placing a positive spin on these dictates that were from the perspective of American civil-liberty jurists unconstitutional and in violation of the United Nations’ treaty of human rights … for in the Promised Land neither an adulterer nor a homosexual had the right to live: the personhood of the individual was a usufruct right, bestowed by the Lord to the individual for as long as the individual did not damage the property of the Lord—and from the Lord’s perspective all sexual relations outside of the marriage of a man to a woman by legal and biological firstborns that belong to Him damages His property. He would take from the adulterer or from the shepherd who had molested his ewes or from any other person engaged in a same-sex relationship the life of the person; for again, any sex outside of marriage was rebellion against the Lord, with this rebellion through unbelief damaging the personhood given to the individual by the Lord.
The foundational documents of the United States of America, through the expression of religious tolerance, represent inscribed rebellion against God, rebellion that will see the United States paying a very heavy price in the Affliction, the first 1260 days of the seven endtime years. Since the people of the United States, American Christendom, and even world Christendom have long desired spiritual slavery metaphorically represented by Israel’s physical enslavement in Egypt, the Lord has placed America under a big-eared Pharaoh that doesn’t know the greatness of the Lord …
President Obama and politicians since the formation of the Great Society—politicians from both major parties—have demonstrated the evil inherent in all democracies, including representational democracies: they have demonstrated why a nation must have generational reform of the type offered by the year of jubilee, reform that sees the land returned to families and clans, reform that frees slaves and abolishes debts. But imbedded in the concept of the year of jubilee is the negation of private ownership of land: “‘The land shall not be sold in perpetuity, for the land is mine [the Lord’s]’” (Lev 25:23). All a person has to land is a usufruct right: what a person can convey to another person is usufruct, the legal right to use and benefit from the property of another person for as long as the property is not damaged, with the property returning to its owner, the Lord, at the end of the contracted period.
Americans, especially, view the right to own private property as a foundational and constitutional right akin to the unalienable right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, but again, germane to the conceptual underpinning for the Second Passover liberation of Israel is the reality that no person has even a right to the life he or she lives. No person has a right to mental sanity; has the right to think and act as a human being; has the right to personhood. Each of these things are as the Promised Land divvied up among the tribes of Israel was: a person has a usufruct right to human personhood, conveyed to the living entity as provisional life, first physically provisional and then spiritually provisional.
In this world, no person other than possibly the first Chinese emperor has had the wealth and power that Nebuchadnezzar, king of ancient Babylon, had; thus Nebuchadnezzar serves as the epitome of what it is to be human and to have the finer things of life. His hanging gardens were one of the seven wonders of the ancient world. The image of gold he made, ninety feet tall with a nine foot base (Dan 3:1), probably an obelisk and certainly a phallic symbol, would have, if solid, represented in positive worth twice America’s national debt, thereby making Nebuchadnezzar’s worth in gold more than the worth of the entirety of the United States. But the construction of so heavy an obelisk would have presented technological problems, thus suggesting that the obelisk was only sheathed in gold. Regardless, Nebuchadnezzar serves as the shadow and type [the left-hand enantiomer] of the Adversary partly because of his possessions and partly because he served as a tool that the Lord used to bring destruction upon the land and people of Israel (Jer 25:8–9).
King Solomon, for all of his wealth and glory, did not control the resources of this world to the extent that Nebuchadnezzar did; yet Nebuchadnezzar did not have control over his own human personhood:
I, Nebuchadnezzar, was at ease in my house and prospering in my palace. I saw a dream that made me afraid. As I lay in bed the fancies and the visions of my head alarmed me. So I made a decree that all the wise men of Babylon should be brought before me, that they might make known to me the interpretation of the dream. Then the magicians, the enchanters, the Chaldeans, and the astrologers came in, and I told them the dream, but they could not make known to me its interpretation. At last Daniel came in before me—he who was named Belteshazzar after the name of my god, and in whom is the spirit of the holy gods—and I told him the dream, saying, “O Belteshazzar, chief of the magicians, because I know that the spirit of the holy gods is in you and that no mystery is too difficult for you, tell me the visions of my dream that I saw and their interpretation. The visions of my head as I lay in bed were these: I saw, and behold, a tree in the midst of the earth, and its height was great. The tree grew and became strong, and its top reached to heaven, and it was visible to the end of the whole earth. Its leaves were beautiful and its fruit abundant, and in it was food for all. The beasts of the field found shade under it, and the birds of the heavens lived in its branches, and all flesh was fed from it. / I saw in the visions of my head as I lay in bed, and behold, a watcher, a holy one, came down from heaven. He proclaimed aloud and said thus: ‘Chop down the tree and lop off its branches, strip off its leaves and scatter its fruit. Let the beasts flee from under it and the birds from its branches. But leave the stump of its roots in the earth, bound with a band of iron and bronze, amid the tender grass of the field. Let him be wet with the dew of heaven. Let his portion be with the beasts in the grass of the earth. Let his mind be changed from a man's, and let a beast's mind be given to him; and let seven periods of time pass over him. The sentence is by the decree of the watchers, the decision by the word of the holy ones, to the end that the living may know that the Most High rules the kingdom of men and gives it to whom he will and sets over it the lowliest of men.’ This dream I, King Nebuchadnezzar, saw. And you, O Belteshazzar, tell me the interpretation, because all the wise men of my kingdom are not able to make known to me the interpretation, but you are able, for the spirit of the holy gods is in you.” (Dan 4:4–18 emphasis added)
Nebuchadnezzar was the most powerful man alive, yet he was frightened by a dream—
The king had no right to his own thoughts, let alone to the wealth and power he had obtained and had used for human good. Therefore, his human personhood was taken from him for seven years: his body remained alive, but his mind and nature was that of an ox. He didn’t desire the finer things in life; he didn’t desire a soft bed and soft clothing and delicate foods. He didn’t desire intercourse with a human woman. He was content to graze upon the grass in the field for those years when his human nature was taken from him.
Human death takes human life from the person; takes human personhood from the person; and forms a type of what happened to King Nebuchadnezzar. Hence, resurrection from death in the great White Throne Judgment forms a type of Nebuchadnezzar having his reason returned to him. And when the king had his reason returned, he said, “‘Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise and extol and honor the King of heaven, for all his works are right and his ways are just; and those who walk in pride he is able to humble’” (Dan 4:37). Those human beings who die physically and who are raised from death in judgment will praise and extol and honor the Lord, if death has done its work in these human beings—the work of humbling the person.
The aging process has a work to do in every person, the work of humbling the person.
In Daniel’s interpretation of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream is one of the most important and most overlooked clauses in all of Scripture: “‘And as it was commanded to leave the stump of the roots of the tree, your kingdom shall be confirmed for you from the time that you know that Heaven rules’” (Dan 4:26) … Nebuchadnezzar had a mighty kingdom before he had his reason taken from him, before he was humbled by the Lord. His kingdom was not confirmed until after the seven years and after the king extolled the greatness of the Lord. And in a similar matter, the personhood of a human person is not confirmed or established until after the person is resurrected from death in the great White Throne Judgment.
The confirming or establishing of a person comes when judgment is made concerning the person … judgment is today on the firstfruits of God (1 Pet 4:17), but not on the remainder of humankind. Therefore, the genuinely born-of-God Christian is today confirming or not-confirming his or her personhood as a son of God. The Christian who will not believe God will have his or her personhood taken from the Christian and burned up in the lake of fire, the second death; for again, the Christian only has a usufruct right to those attributes of personality and life than make the person unique. These attributes will not be confirmed until after the person has been humbled by death, either literal or figurative through giving up life in this world, with giving up life being a euphemistic expression for not loving the things of this world, regardless of whether these things are financial wealth, political power, the finer things of life, or geographical locations.
A person such as the Apostle Paul died to this world when he was humbled on the road to Damascus, and remained humbled by a thorn in his flesh, probably weepy eyes that embarrassed him and limited what he could do. His personhood was confirmed through his zeal for the Lord, proclaiming Christ Jesus to the very Christians he had previously persecuted.
Nebuchadnezzar records, through Daniel, “‘At the same time my reason returned to me, and for the glory of my kingdom, my majesty and splendor returned to me. My counselors and my lords sought me, and I was established in my kingdom, and still more greatness was added to me’” (Dan 4:36 emphasis added). Yes, Nebuchadnezzar was returned to the throne he had held previous to his reason being taken from him, the easy explanation for what being established or confirmed means, but Belshazzar, the descendant of Nebuchadnezzar, was not humbled by what happened to Nebuchadnezzar even though he knew the story. Daniel tells Belshazzar,
O king, the Most High God gave Nebuchadnezzar your father kingship and greatness and glory and majesty. And because of the greatness that he gave him, all peoples, nations, and languages trembled and feared before him. Whom he would, he killed, and whom he would, he kept alive; whom he would, he raised up, and whom he would, he humbled. But when his heart was lifted up and his spirit was hardened so that he dealt proudly, he was brought down from his kingly throne, and his glory was taken from him. He was driven from among the children of mankind, and his mind was made like that of a beast, and his dwelling was with the wild donkeys. He was fed grass like an ox, and his body was wet with the dew of heaven, until he knew that the Most High God rules the kingdom of mankind and sets over it whom he will. And you his son, Belshazzar, have not humbled your heart, though you knew all this, but you have lifted up yourself against the Lord of heaven. And the vessels of his house have been brought in before you, and you and your lords, your wives, and your concubines have drunk wine from them. And you have praised the gods of silver and gold, of bronze, iron, wood, and stone, which do not see or hear or know, but the God in whose hand is your breath, and whose are all your ways, you have not honored. (Dan 5:18–23 emphasis added)
But the God in whose hand is your breath, and whose are all your ways, you have not honored—Belshazzar had no inalienable right to life or to his own ways, nor does any person alive have an inalienable right to life. Each person breathes and has the thoughts of a person because the Lord permits the person to breathe and to think as a person, with the Lord well able to take both from the person without even a moment’s notice, and be morally justified in taking from the person life because the person was abusing his or her life through not believing the Lord.
Belshazzar did receive a warning although not much of one; for that very night Darius the Mede [Gubaru the Mede] killed the Chaldean king. And in typology, Belshazzar forms the shadow and image of human beings who will not humble themselves before God when resurrected from death at in the great White Throne Judgment: their days were numbered, and their deeds were weighed, and their would-be positions in the kingdom of God will be given to others. They will not be established or confirmed as sons of God, heirs of the Most High God.
As resurrection from death represents a restoring to life, the year of jubilee represented the restoring of Israel to its debt-free state, the status the liberated children of Israel had when the nation entered the Promised Land, which forms a shadow and type of heaven. … The two concepts—the jubilee and death—are interconnected and are related to Nebuchadnezzar having his reason [his humanness] taken from him for seven years.
As one of the basest/lowliest of men (from Dan 4:17), President Obama, an elected Pharaoh with big-ears, apparently seeks to further enslave by stealth the American Body Politick beyond its present enslavement to debt: he talks about change you can believe in while simultaneously talking about economic responsibility though practicing none. As the junior senator from Illinois, he voted against raising the debt ceiling while he now wants the ceiling raised so he can borrow and spend more money that doesn’t represent wealth but debt. But borrowed debt doesn’t cancel itself out as debt: just as two linguistic negatives [I don’t want no potatoes!] do not make a positive but serve to emphasize the negation, borrowing debt doesn’t cancel out the debt, but simply parks American debt in someone else’s or some other nation’s account where it shrivels in size due to inflation and hyperinflation … a farmer takes his or her corn down to the local coop where he or she parks the corn in the grain elevator’s bins. A sign in the coop’s office warns the farmer that there is a 1%/month shrinkage fee, a fee that covers a little grain spilled here and there, and a little grain consumed by weevils, and the actual shrinkage of the grain as it further dries.
Liberty comes with a shrinkage fee: the more the government does for the Body Politick, the less free the Body Politick is to do for itself … twenty years ago, when in the Lower Forty-Eight and in eastern Ohio, I encountered discussions about Amish farmhouses that had to be wired for electricity even though no electricity would be used in the house. Ohio law required that electrical wiring be installed in all new homes. The freedom to build a house however the future homeowner desired [or could afford] had been taken from the people. Whereas in Idaho that same year a person could still claim from the state enough logs to build a home [the prospective homebuilder could apply for a permit that entitled the person to sufficient logs from public lands for a home and a barn] the liberty to build an unwired log home had been taken from Ohioans. Politicians had impinged upon what my ancestors that taken for granted in 1806, the freedom to build on deeded or leased property in Ohio. A short generation later, my ancestors were in Northern Indiana, clearing heavily forested land, seven acres the first year—clearing land without needing permits or permission.
Requiring that Amish property owners wire new residences was a political meddling in religious affairs, a meddling that represents the natural shrinkage of liberty that comes when obedience to God is mingled with well-intended political decrees and slimy campaign contributions.
What bank customers seem not to understand is the interest they receive on money the bank holds also has an embedded shrinkage fee, with this shrinkage fee coming in the form of inflation—
I can remember the first time I paid 45¢ a gallon for gasoline. I was outraged, but then I had to consider that I was in the Ochoco National Forest and about 40 miles from Prineville and an equal distance from Mitchell. Thee were no other stations around (the station was old enough that its pump had a five gallon glass reservoir that was filled and gravity feed into my tank). So I put in enough gas to continue hunting that day and the next morning.
Regular gasoline was then 94 octane, and was expensive at 32¢/gallon in Siletz, Oregon, where I lived, a couple hundred miles from the Ochocos. Gas was 18–22¢/gallon in the Willamette Valley … what is it now, 85 octane and nearly $4./gallon, with $5./gallon coming with the change of the wall calendar. At least one official in President Obama’s administration has publicly stated that he wanted to see Americans pay European gas prices, which would be possible if the nearest grocery store wasn’t a gallon of gas away or more, and the person’s jobsite wasn’t five or six gallons of gas away.
Is there more gas in a gallon now than there was in 1967, when I hunted the Ochocos? What about just weights and measures? Yes, I understand how the free market works. I also understand that the American dollar has shrunk as wool shrinks when washed in hot water, that the savings of a generation has been stolen from that generation through willful inflation. A dollar earned and saved in 1967 couldn’t be simply held, but had to be invested: a bunch of us at Georgia-Pacific’s Toledo, Oregon, pulp mill discussed Tandy Leather’s seeking investors in a venture dubbed RadioShack. My wallet was then made from a Tandy Leather kit, as were several of the other fellows’ wallets—what did a leather company know about electronics? So only one of us actually bought shares: he now owns beachfront property near D-River.
A century ago, rural Americans didn’t venture to town often. They harvested and stored their food on site. My grandfather in rural Indiana made the long trip to Bluffton, 10 miles away, once or twice in a year. He once ventured from his farm as far as Muncie, but wasn’t comfortable spending the night so far from home and returned in the middle of the night. My father, however, born in 1915, traveled all over the continental United States before being drafted in 1941 and touring North Africa, Sicily, Italy, Southern France and on into Austria. He worked as a long haul truck driver for a few years before temporarily settling down in Oregon in 1956 … he was thinking about pulling up roots and heading to Alaska when he died in 1958, at 42 years of age. When I turned 42, I was a graduate student in Fairbanks, Alaska, with Dutch Harbor being the only place where I had/have ever felt I was at home. But Dutch Harbor in 1988 was still remote enough that it was difficult to live there without having access to cheap oil—and I knew then [have known since 1972] that rural America had become too dependent upon underpriced oil, that any life but subsistence could not be long maintained outside of America’s heartland.
I actually desired a subsistence-style life in the Aleutians, but I had been drafted into the Body of Christ and I really couldn’t assemble with others of like mind while living in a remote cove on Akun Island or Sedanka Island or even Unalaska Island. Then in 2002, I was called to a work; so I’m now far from where the world tucks itself into bed to await the coming of a new day. I gave up my life—not literally, but certainly figuratively—when I left the Aleutians. I left most everything I held dear in the Aleutians; however, I’m now a literal stone’s throw from the coop’s grain elevators so little fuel needed to buy feed-quality corn and oats, a ton at a time. Instead of halibut, cod, salmon being the mainstay of my diet, it’s local apples, beans, beets, carrots, corn, onions, peppers, potatoes.
More than thirty-five years ago the word went out that as disciples we should simplify our lives: all of the reasons then given for simplification remain valid … who will laugh the most at $10./gallon gasoline? An Amish farmer who hasn’t compromised with this world and become addicted to Frosted Flakes® for breakfast? Possibly.
About twenty years ago, I wrote an essay that discloses a little about what it means to me to now dwell far from home. The following is the first section of that essay:
The poet Wendy Rose told a Fairbanks audience that when she asks her minority students where "home" is they identify the places of their ethnic origins, but when she asks this of Anglo-American students they identify where they currently live. Home is, to them, a concept rooted in the present. Wendy's observation was that the psyche of Anglo-Americans lacks a strongly held sense of place.
John Haines, citing D.H. Lawrence, wrote about a sense of place. He wondered whether a true literature of the north could develop when so much of what is written about Alaska is, in his terminology, "travel writing."
To start discussions about what is literature, I have used, in classes, John's essay about whether a genuine literature of the North will appear; I believe John's point is well made. However, I believe his observations fall within a larger discussion of whether individually important texts only validate personal experience. The texts John would recognize as having a sense of Alaska as "place" would be those that validate John's experiences of living in rural Alaska. "Home" for John is a site east of Fairbanks, a little off the road and painted blue the last time I passed by.
I began fishing Kamloops trout in British Columbia’s lakes in 1967. Each year I ventured a little farther north as if I were a fledgling testing my wings. I wanted to relocate to British Columbia, and I even accepted a job in a Prince George pulpmill in 1969. But the mill's personnel manager said he expected the mill to shortly go out on strike, that I should wait until the strike was settled before I moved north. He expected the strike to last a couple of weeks. However, the strike lasted six months, and by the time it was settled, my gunshop upriver from Siletz was keeping me too busy to think about moving: Hart Mountain National Antelope Refuge had been opened to muzzleloading deer hunters for the first time in 1969. I had far more rifles to build than I could for hunters who wanted a crack at the refuge’s large mule deer bucks that only knew the killing range of an archer with an arrow. So I stayed in Oregon, shot high power competition, hunted deer with a muzzleloader, and caught many, many steelhead for the next five years. But I didn't buy property in Lincoln County even though I could have and should have. I didn't want to get stuck there. I felt an urge to move-on, to move North, an urge that warred with a desire to stay where I was. Each impulse was equally strong. And if I had been one of Wendy's students, I would not have known where home was. I would have answered that it was where I lived there at Twin Bridges, five miles upriver from Siletz, Oregon. It certainly wasn't Indiana where I was born. Nor was it Holland, nor Bavaria from where ancestors once came. It wasn't really where I lived, but I would have had no other answer to her question. I would have hummed and hawed like many of her Anglo-American students even though some Native American blood flows in my veins.
I didn't travel north of Mackenzie, British Columbia, until 1974, when George Connor asked if I wanted to drive a vehicle to Homer, Alaska, for him. I had wanted to go to Alaska since high school; I wanted to talk to Harold "Bill" Fuller, a muzzleloading gunmaker at Cooper Landing. So after confirming that the road to Homer went through Cooper Landing, I bounced my way to Alaska in George’s early Toyota Land Cruiser, towing all the way his sixteen foot speed boat on an eight-foot-wide trailer.
Alaska impressed me much less than I anticipated until I started around Turnagain Arm and up over Silvertip. I liked the Kenai Peninsula and everything I saw. I was smitten as much as I had been by Cecille Sax, my first love. And yes, the semi-realization of the romance of the North produced the same type of feelings of fascination and desire I had experienced at fourteen when holding hands. Puppy love might not be love, but the emotions it produces are hypnotic.
I took a job in North Kenai felling [falling] timber, or rather, felling what the Peninsula calls timber. But after a year and a half of gyppo logging and repairing chainsaws, and after buying an acre of undeveloped land off Kalifonski Beach Road, I faced beginning my second winter North without adequate housing and with very little money. Kathy, my oldest daughter, had started school a year earlier, but she was on Correspondence Study through the State of Alaska. I didn't really have a reason for staying on the Peninsula that second winter; so I returned Outside, where I felled white pine in northern Idaho until heavy snow pushed us, as it does deer, downhill all the way back to Lincoln County, Oregon.
Leaving my wife and daughters in a Newport studio apartment with the rent paid for a couple of months and the refrigerator full, I headed back up the Alaska Highway in February 1976. As far as actual travel is concerned, this would be the toughest trip of the many I have made up and down the Highway. I would arrive in Soldotna with four dollars and an empty gas tank.
But on this trip, as I descended the hill atop of which is Alaskan U.S. Customs, I felt, for the first time in my life, like I was home, like I had arrived where I belong. The feeling was overwhelming all the way to Northway. A real sense of home. But by the time I reached Tok, the feeling had faded although I still felt remnants of it for at least a month. I had felt briefly what it was that Wendy's minority students took for granted.
As I drove across that marshy flat just inside Alaska's Yukon border, I felt a spirit rise from the land and interact with my spirit. It wasn't voices or a spirit being in a religious sense or even something overly transcendental. It was truly a sense of arriving home, or returning to where I belonged, with emphasis on returning. And that is how I attributed it until I sailed into Dutch Harbor in July 1979.
When I arrived in Soldotna that February day, a Friday to be exact, in 1976, I had no home; I certainly didn't think of that acre of raw ground I owned as home. I was as much of a sojourner as a person can be. Yet I felt something that didn't have a tangible manifestation. I felt a connection perhaps less to the physical landscape than to the romance of Alaska, that Alaskan mystic which is in the soul of that hated metatext about the territorial imperative.
Three years later, I looked around my shop, a chainsaw and outboard dealership that was moderately successful, and I didn't see a gun anywhere, didn't see a clean bench on which I could have stocked a gun. Kenai's economy was lying dead in a cesspool somewhere south of Homer. Three of every four people who stopped by the shop were unemployed. I was literally living in grease. I wasn't liking myself much, wasn't satisfied with the direction I was going either personally or professionally. So I put my shop on the market.
It sold nine days later, sold before I could even change my mind.
I carried the contract. But with the buyer's down payment, I bought a 29-foot Bartender (George Calkins' design), rigged it with a pothauler and headed out to Kodiak to fish halibut.
When the halibut season closed in the Pacific, I headed south towards Dutch Harbor—the Bering Sea remained open until Labor Day.
During those three years when I really couldn't get away from my shop for long enough to even catch a humpy—the shop didn't seem able to run an hour without me—I would, every so often, remember that feeling of home I had experienced when I crossed the border that cold February day. I began to wonder what it was that I had really felt, or if I had truly felt anything at all. I could almost remember the feeling, but I didn't feel it. And its memory was becoming more questionable whenever I recalled it.
I thought of myself as an Alaskan. I never expected to be anything but an Alaskan. I had lived with an outhouse at thirty below and colder. I had spent a winter with three daughters in a log cabin too small to park a full size pickup inside. I had moose warm their noses against our windowpanes. I had to chase moose off the shoveled path to the outhouse. I wasn't a cheechako. I even knew where to find ice worms. But I had never again felt a sense of home. I felt like a sojourner, someone marking time, someone waiting until it was time to again move on. I felt the same thing I felt when I built rifles in Oregon. I was like the patriarch Abraham who lived in a land he didn't possess but a land promised to him. I wasn't looking to go anywhere else, but I knew I wasn't home. It was as if the future and the past had acquired aspects of "place."
On my way to Dutch Harbor, I was again short of money. (There has never been a time in my life when I could enter a restaurant and order a meal without first mentally calculating whether I have enough to pay for it.) Before I arrived in port, I had to catch a few halibut so I could buy more fuel—I laid a longline set in a bay of Akun Island. I laid another set off Akutan, where a female Orca circled the boat all one afternoon. We made eye contact; I talked to her, told her I appreciated her keeping the sea lions that I had problems with earlier in the day far up on the beach, talked to her as if she were a dog. I have no idea if she even grasped my sentiments, but she hung around (perhaps because I looked a little like one of those sea lions). And I put fifteen hundred pounds of halibut in the hold while she was there.
Between Akun and Akutan, I started to feel a return of that sense of arriving home. At first the feeling was remembered. Clearly, it was the same feeling I had felt when I crossed into Alaska in 1976. And I tried to dismiss it as just me remembering my return to Alaska.
But as I looked from Lava Point towards Priest Rock at the entrance to Unalaska Bay, that sense of arriving home became absolutely overpowering. And it stayed overpowering as I sailed into Dutch Harbor. I have never felt any feeling as powerful. None. And I wasn't returning to where I had been before.
The feeling was, though, that of returning—
Unless some part of Wendy Rose's observation about a psychology of home or place is transferable across generations, I can't explain what I felt. Yes, Howland ancestors had whaled in the Bering, which means they had to pass near Dutch Harbor or put into port there. Otherwise, I know of no reason why I should have felt like I was returning home when I sailed into Dutch Harbor.
Is genetically retained memory possible?
There is some slim evidence to support the idea that the early ancestors of many Anglo-Europeans dwelt, traded and traveled across a landscape that stretches from China to Europe to the lands drained by the Mississippi. This evidence suggests that they came from Parthia and Carthage and Canaan before famine and wars shuffled them around. It has them as sojourners throughout the historic era, with their history being a mostly lost record of their journeys. It suggests that for them (for me) their sense of place, their sense of home is in a time continuum and is not in a geographic location.
I stayed in Unalaska until Christmas 1979, then came back the next summer. And all the time I was there, I had an ongoing feeling of being home, of belonging to a geographic location. But like early Carthagians, business interests dictated that I leave, that I return on the Mainland. I spent the following winter in Anchorage before returning to Kodiak, where I liked living but never truly felt that sense of home.
It has been almost twenty years since I have been to Dutch Harbor [now, April 2011, over thirty years]. In all of these years, I have not again experienced that feeling of being home although I have traveled to Kenai, to Fairbanks, to Oregon, Indiana, Ohio, Idaho. I don't miss not having that sense of place as much as I am curious about what it was I did feel. I do feel bound to a mental landscape, to ideas, to liberty, to a deity. But if a geographical home exists, it is in the Aleutians and right now I am far from it.
I deliberately gave up that feeling of home when I left Unalaska with a boat still there and the community in need of an outboard dealership, a business like the one I had sold on the Kenai a year and a half earlier. I gave up home for a God that has promised more than a few square feet of this earth’s crust.
A Part Five of this Commentary will be forthcoming.
* * *
"Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved."