A Modern Woman's Perspective On The Kingdom of God on Earth


August 21, 2019

Romans 13 And The Kingdom of God

    
     There is no denying that our nation has been in turmoil over the past few decades in regards to deciding how we want to be governed. The Presidential cycles are becoming more and more hostile; and citizens are aligning themselves along polar-opposite political lines, leading to aggressive and combative attitudes and actions -- not exactly following the commandment in Ephesians 4:32 to be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.
     But we can hardly say that the world's governments follow the dictates of the Heavenly government can we? And how many people -- even Christians -- understand that how God governs in His Heavenly domain is to be the role model here on earth? I suppose secular people, who have no relationship with their Creator, can be forgiven for not asking those questions and seeking the answers. But, if you call yourself a follower of Christ, it is incumbent upon you to read His Word, taking the whole counsel of it and study what He had to say about how mankind was to be governed; and then pursue an understanding of how His Disciples interpreted government. If not, your opinion is not Christ-oriented.
    All that being said, I would submit to you that most Christians look to Romans 13:1-7 to try to define how we are to regard government. So, let's consider that passage: Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval, for he is God's servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God's wrath on the wrongdoer. Therefore one must be in subjection, not only to avoid God's wrath but also for the sake of conscience. For because of this you also pay taxes, for the authorities are ministers of God, attending to this very thing. Pay to all what is owed to them: taxes to whom taxes are owed, revenue to whom revenue is owed, respect to whom respect is owed, honor to whom honor is owed.
     Before we dive into an expository on this passage, I believe [as always] that it is important to look at what is spoken within context of the bigger picture. It can be a mistake [in understanding] if we let these seven verses alone determine our doctrine on what God thinks about earthly governments. So, let's look at who the Book of Romans was written to, and see if that gives us a clue where to start, because all 16 chapters would have been written as one long letter, without the chapter divisions that modern Bibles include.
     Romans, Chapter One, verse 7 says [in the Amplified version], [I am writing] to all who are beloved of God in Rome, called to be saints (God’s people) and set apart for a sanctified life, [that is, set apart for God and His purpose. So Paul is writing to "God's people", not the general secular population of Rome. Furthermore, the Bible records this letter [to this particular group of people in Rome] right after the last two verses of the preceding chapter. Acts 28:30-31 says Paul lived in Rome two whole years at his own expense, and welcomed all who came to him, proclaiming the kingdom of God and teaching about the Lord Jesus Christ with all boldness and without hindrance.
     Can you comprehend that when Paul writes in Romans 13:1, Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God, that "every person" refers to every Believer [his audience as stated in Romans 1] and he is reminding them to submit to the kingdom of God's government? 
     There is no reason to doubt that Paul understood that Jesus came proclaiming that the Kingdom of God had arrived [and along with it, its government]; Paul wrote about the kingdom 17 times in the 13 books of the Bible that bear his signature. Since he was writing to Christians and understood that Jesus came to establish God's governing principles on the earth, the "governing authorities" he referred to should be understood to be godly men entrusted to execute Heaven's government on earth. When you understand Romans 13 from the kingdom perspective, then you know who these authorities are, and who they represent. Then the statement "there is no authority except from God" makes perfect sense, and "those who exist have been instituted by God", should tell us that God is establishing an earthly kingdom that resembles His heavenly kingdom [through chosen Believers that will legislate according to His purpose]. And what was God's purpose for man as stated in Genesis 1:26-28? To rule the earth in His stead!
     That makes verse 2 even clearer: Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. Whose judgment? God's! And the next three verses make more sense from the kingdom perspective as well. The rulers who are appointed by God to administrate His kingdom government on earth are not to be feared if you are walking in the ways of a citizen of the kingdom. Only those Believers who stray from the righteous path should be concerned about the authorities of the kingdom. I invite you to think from a renewed mind [one that thinks from God's perspective and not the carnal mind] -- Romans 1:7 establishes that this letter is written to Christians, right? If you read this passage from the commonly accepted viewpoint, you must ask yourself this question: why would God give "worldly" authorities power over righteous Christians? Does it make sense that He would tell us to be subject to them above Him? 
     And I know that verses 6 and 7 might cause confusion because they tell us to pay our taxes to the ministers of God. This has long been interpreted from a secular government frame of reference because we all pay taxes to our nation's government. But when we stop to realize that Jesus came to re-institute God's kingdom and its government here on earth, He was fully aware that He was bringing a new kingdom that would have to exist here in the world; think "in" the world, but not "of" the world. That means God's righteous ministers of His kingdom's government would need to be supported to do God's work here on earth. Since we are in this world, that requires support by earthly means ... taxes and revenue; but all for God's purpose [establishing righteousness among His people], and showing respect and honor to whom it is owed.
     A very dear friend sent me a link to a website called EmbassyofHeaven.com which gives a very good and concise summary of Romans 13: "The best way to understand Romans 13:1-7 is to read it as a blueprint for Christian government. Paul was not telling us to obey Caesar or the Roman State. He was giving us a definition of lawful [kingdom] government. Punish the evil and reward the good... Jesus did not come to earth to put us under governments of men. He came to bring us a government to replace the governments of wicked men". 
     We must look at the big picture! Paul was beheaded for promoting a rival government to Rome's government. In Romans 12, Paul tells us "do not be conformed to this world". If, in Romans 13, he is telling us to submit to the governing authorities of Rome, wouldn't that be hypocritical? No, Paul is presenting a very important argument in favor of the Kingdom of God. It is critical that we recognize our Father in Heaven's government is here NOW -- and that share this Good News, encouraging every nation, and tongue, and people to stop seeking the kingdoms of this world. Let us rejoice that we, in this time and age, are seeing this truth, and let us step into our purpose and destiny as the sons and daughters of the King. Partake of the government Jesus promised His disciples [and all who follow Him] ...

Luke 22:24-30   The disciples bickered over which one of them would be considered the greatest in the kingdom. 25 Jesus interrupted their argument, saying, “The kings and men of authority in this world rule oppressively over their subjects, claiming that they do it for the good of the people. They are obsessed with how others see them. 26 But this is not your calling. You will lead by a different model. The greatest one among you will live as one called to serve others without honor. The greatest honor and authority is reserved for the one who has a servant heart. 27 The leaders who are served are the most important in your eyes, but in the kingdom, it is the servants who lead. Am I not here with you as one who serves you?
28 “Because you have stood with Me through all My trials and ordeals, 29 I give you your destiny: I am promising you the kingdom realm that the Father has promised Me. 30 We will celebrate in this kingdom and you will feast with Me at My table. And each of you will be given a throne, twelve thrones in all, and you will be made rulers on thrones to judge the tribes of Israel.”


       
    

August 18, 2019

Learning From History: God's Law, Solomon, and The Antichrist


      No matter whether a Christian or not, people can see the rising tide of evil and lawlessness in the world. That has many people wondering if the Antichrist is about to make his world debut. I want to be clear ... I am not advocating that we all begin trying to decipher the Book of Revelation and become fixated on the End Times. But, as Ambassadors of the Kingdom of God here on earth, it is our duty and responsibility to stay awake and aware of the possible signs that indicate that Satan's own ambassador is on the scene.
     However, not everyone is looking at this situation from the same perspective. There are those who are enmeshed and readily accept the conveniences of technology and artificial intelligence in our everyday life -- after all, it is nearly impossible to escape it. Alexis and Siri offer helpful suggestions, and nanotech is becoming a pervasive element in our lives. Have you considered the ramifications of the following nanotechnology: that nanoparticles in pharmaceutical products improve their absorption within the body and make them easier to deliver [insert]; that most sunscreens today are made from nanoparticles that effectively absorb light (see this post on how AI can bend light in our bodies); or that thanks to nanotechnology, a huge variety of chemical sensors can be programmed to detect a particular chemical at amazingly low levels? This capability is ideal for surveillance and security systems at labs, industrial sites, and airports ... and more. Think it might be useful for the "Beast System"?
     Then there are Christians who are either so convinced that nothing will harm them because Jesus is going to whisk them away before "the bad stuff happens", so they're just going to remain "of the world" with all it has to offer -- or the Christians who are so certain that we are on the doorstep of the Apocalypse that they don't ever accomplish anything for the Kingdom. And neither are much good at "occupying" until our Lord returns.
     So, now I would like to get to the point of this article. I do not wake up each morning wondering if this is the day that the Antichrist will show up, but I am alert to the indicators in our world that point to increasing lawlessness and a disregard for God's laws. You see, I am a follower of Christ who knows that my God is a God of order and He expects us to be obedient to His statutes and commandments. My God is the same God who is revealed in the Bible -- the whole Bible. So as I read the accounts of the ancient kings and kingdoms, and how God instructed them, I know that those same laws/commands/statutes/rules apply to modern kings and kingdoms. Our God is immutable; never-changing. He is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow. And I know that just as some of the greatest kings of history fell away in disobedience to God and fell from positions of power, the same thing can happen today. Furthermore, it is incumbent upon me as an Ambassador of Heaven's government to be watchful for men and systems and structures and networks that could ensnare and entrap mankind into serving the Antichrist.
     And that is why the reign of Solomon is so interesting. The Bible tells us that because Solomon [upon attaining the throne of Israel] asked God for wisdom and knowledge to rule and judge God's people -- rather than riches, wealth, honor, a long life, or great victories over his enemies -- God "strengthened his kingdom, was with Solomon, and elevated his stature" (2 Chronicles 1:1-10).
     But as has happened to kings, both past and present, it started off better than it ended. As the son of King David, a man after God's own heart, Solomon was given this piece of advice before David's death: "Keep the charge of the Lord your God: to walk in His ways, to keep His statutes, His commandments, His judgments, and His testimonies, as it is written in the Law of Moses, that you may prosper in all that you do and wherever you turn. . . for you are a wise man."
     For awhile, Solomon was successful, quelling a civil war and the treachery of his half-brother Adonijah, General Joab, and Abiathar the Priest. Israel's success and prosperity, as a nation, were due to his reforms and innovations such as the improvement of defense measures; the expansion of the royal court; the financial windfall from more sophisticated taxation; labor conscriptions of Canaanites and Israelites; tributes and gifts from foreign countries [who were under the influence of Israel and its king]; and a land and sea trading system that utilized a powerful navy and army to protect assets and trade routes. According to the Hebrew scriptures, “The king made silver and gold as common in Jerusalem as stones, and he made cedars as abundant as the sycamores, which are in the lowland”.
     But as happens so often, men [and kings] are deceived by the temptations of this world and their own pride. Solomon forgot the wise advice offered by his father, King David, and forgot the statutes God commanded as set forth by Moses in the Book of Deuteronomy. According to Deuteronomy 17:16, God demanded that a king of Israel was not to increase his number of horses or make the people return to Egypt to increase his horses.Yet, King Solomon formed alliances [in the name of peace] with other nearby powerful nations such as Egypt, Moab, Tyre, and Arabia -- enemies of Israel! But in 1 Kings 4:26, we find that "Solomon had forty thousand stalls of horses for his chariots and twelve thousand horsemen"; a direct violation of Deuteronomy 17:16.
     But that's not the only reason Solomon fell out of favor with God. In Deuteronomy 17:17, God establishes another of His statutes: "Neither shall he [the king] multiply wives to himself, so that his heart is turned away; neither shall he greatly multiply silver and gold for himself". Yet 1 Kings 11:3 says, Solomon "had seven hundred wives who were princesses and three hundred concubines, and his wives turned his heart away". And 1 Kings 10:22 says Solomon had a fleet of ships, and every three years they brought in gold, silver, ivory, apes and peacocks. In addition verse 14 says "Now the weight of gold that came to Solomon in one year was 666 talents of gold". King Solomon reigned for 40 years, so that's approximately $64.3 billion in tribute alone. I find it interesting that the number 666 is mentioned only twice in the Bible, once here in reference to Solomon's gold trade, and once in Revelation 13:18, identifying the Antichrist.
     Solomon also married foreign women, which God said not to do. According to his wisdom, what better way to secure peace than by marrying the daughters of foreign kings? But it was a direct affront to God's commands. He achieved peace at a very expensive cost. And again, we see Solomon rebelling against God's command in Deuteronomy 7:5, But this is how you shall deal with them [foreign nations]: you shall tear down their altars and smash to pieces their sacred pillars, and cut down their Asherim (symbols of the goddess Asherah), and burn their carved or sculpted images in the fire.
     Yet, what did Solomon do? Solomon went after Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, and after Milcom the abomination of the Ammonites. So Solomon did what was evil in the sight of the Lord and did not wholly follow the Lord, as David his father had done. Then Solomon built a high place for Chemosh the abomination of Moab, and for Molech the abomination of the Ammonites, on the mountain east of Jerusalem. Would it surprise you to know that Milcom and Molech are gods dedicated to child sacrifice? They reign today in our practice of abortion. The god Chemosh was influential in child molestation; he rules today in the child porn and sex trafficking industries. I guess Solomon knew what he was talking about when he said "there is nothing new under the sun". 
     I ask you to consider the concepts I have brought before you today. When the time of the Antichrist comes upon the earth and its peoples, it will be a time when lawlessness is legalized. Just as in Solomon's days, or Hitler's, or Stalin's, the "kings" of the world are influenced by the antichrist spirit to legalize child sacrifice, genocide of whole populations, abortion, drugs, same-sex marriage, and all things immoral and abominable to the God we serve. 
     While it is important to note that the Antichrist is certain to come in the End Times [and that we are not necessarily exempt from his persecution], it is even more important to remember that the spirit of the Antichrist is always with us. Maybe, instead of trying to figure out who he will be, we should be concentrating on what he will be doing and what systems and programs he will putting in place to control and manipulate the whole world. The Bible doesn't give us an exact idea of who "the Beast" is -- it could be a man, a system, a network, or a structure.  The one thing we do know is that the Bible tells us he/it will deceive the world by the signs [wonders, miracles] that he/it is given by Satan. Could we be seeing those signs emerging in our advancing technology and artificial intelligence, which are certainly being heralded as "wonders" and "miracles" of this age? Is it outside the realm of possibility that, with the rapid advancement of AI and medical technology, a human computer hybrid could be developed and demand to be worshiped? And just as in King Solomon's age, we are seeing alliances among former enemy nations [Russia, China, and Iran] and disparate religions [think Chrislam] -- all united under one system called "globalism".
     I do not claim to be able to identify the Antichrist. Nor do I want to be a sensationalist. But it is foolish to put our heads in the sand and ignore the lawlessness and ungodly practices that are apparent everywhere around us. And, because I see things from this perspective, I can recognize the spirit of Antichrist and warn others to reject it. It is my prayer that more of us will rise up in the strength of the Lord as the children of Israel did -- to discern our times like the sons of Issachar and respond to this time, in this age that we have been born into, through the power of the Holy Spirit. We need not be afraid, but be like the children of Zebulon, going forth into spiritual warfare with all the weapons of our Lord. He will not forsake us, nor leave us; and the victory is ours!

 1 Chronicles 12:32-33            Of Issachar, men who had understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do ... Zebulun, equipped for battle with all the weapons of war, to help David with singleness of purpose.

     
    

August 15, 2019

How Are We To Live Under Our King?


   
     A couple of posts back, I expressed the idea that we Americans have difficulty understanding what it's like to live in a kingdom, since we have never experienced it. Therefore, it makes sense that we might struggle with how Jesus, who is our King and Savior expects us to live and honor Him. Hopefully, I can help you put some familiar Scriptures in their proper kingdom perspective, and see how Jesus describes kingdom living.
     It's important that we understand that a King is also "Lord" of his kingdom, which has different connotations: Master, as in having dominion, or absolute control; and an identity as Ruler of his subjects. And here's why living under a King in a true kingdom is beneficial: as the supreme master and ruler over his subjects, a King protects the citizens of his kingdom, as well as owning all the resources, distributing them as he sees fit to those in need. There is then no competition for those resources, because everyone has what they need, when they need it. And since the King owns it all, there is no ownership by the citizens which can result in jealousy, deceit, or greed. The citizens are stewards of what they receive, by way of submitting their allegiance to the King.
     This concept is expressed in Matthew 20:8-10, And when evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his foreman, ‘Call the laborers and pay them their wages, beginning with the last, up to the first.’ And when those hired about the eleventh hour came, each of them received a denarius.  Now when those hired first came, they thought they would receive more, but each of them also received a denarius. Jesus is showing us the equality of living in His kingdom.
     So then, from a kingdom standpoint, and for a successful kingdom life, the most important thing we can declare is that "Jesus Christ is Lord". Paul tells us this in Romans 10:9 ... Because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. And by "saved", Paul means redeemed, bought back, salvaged, restored from the estrangement our ancestors Adam and Eve caused with their rebellion against God [the King] in the Garden. It's about restoring that right relationship with Him by acknowledging that Jesus is King and Lord of everything, including our lives and our destiny.
     So, again, I come back to how do we rethink [or better yet, let's look at it from the Biblical perspective ... renew our mind] about what living under such a Lord looks like. Well, Jesus is Lord of the earth, right? Another way of saying that is, He is Lord of the land. Even our Western minds understand the concept of a landlord. It is a small, but accurate picture of Jesus as Lord. The landlord is the owner and authority of the land [or property] that you occupy, and we as tenants [or residents/citizens] are responsible to obey His instructions, commands, and laws. 
     Jesus cannot be Lord without obedience, so IF He is Lord, you cannot say "Lord...but" or "Lord...except" or "Lord....wait".  IF He is Lord, the only thing you can say is, "Lord...yes"! Jesus tells us this is His expectation when He says, If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me (Luke 9:25); and again, in Matthew 10:37-38, He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. 38) And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me.
     It's pretty clear ... unless Jesus is the first priority of your life; unless He is above any other thing or person you treasure; and unless He is above every goal, ambition, or dream you have ever had, or will have ... then you cannot call yourself a disciple, nor is He Lord of your life. One of the most serious questions Jesus asks in the Bible is this: Why do you call Me Lord, Lord, and not do the things I say? Can any of us honestly deny that we have not been guilty of this accusation at one time or another in our lives? There are no exceptions to His demand for loyalty and obedience. The bottom line is this: Either Jesus is Lord of all, or He is not Lord at all.
     And with that understanding, comes a serious warning. In God's Kingdom, there can be only one King and Lord. We must understand that He does not share ownership of His Kingdom with anyone; not even us, His loyal citizens. He graciously shares all His riches, resources, and all good things of His Kingdom. That is a right we enjoy as a citizen. But as soon as we forget this principle, and begin thinking we own anything, then we make ourselves a lord. With that mindset, we take our focus and trust away from His provision and begin thinking we are responsible for our own needs. We then become proprietary of all we have; we fight to keep what we have; and we begin to live in fear of losing it. When we live in the true Kingdom of God on earth, there are no shortages and no worries or fears about our resources. When we relinquish our possession of what God owns, and acknowledge His Lordship, we find that we have full access to those resources; more even than we could dare to hope or ask for.
     I know that on one hand, this sounds simplistic; and on the other, so foreign compared to how we've been taught to consider Jesus. I think our primary title for Jesus, as taught in the Western Church, is Savior. Yet, in the four Gospels, which are the teachings and revelations of Jesus in the Bible, He is only designated Savior 3 times, but Lord 190 times, and King 364 times. I know it is easy to dismiss this concept of Jesus as Lord/King and ourselves as citizens of His kingdom, but if you agree to accept the Bible as the true revelation of Christ, we cannot dispute this perception of Him and His domain, nor can we refute our rightful identity as sons and heirs of the King. I don't know about you, but that's an identity that is worth exploring, accepting, and inheriting.

1 Thessalonians 2:12     We comforted and encouraged you and challenged you to adopt a lifestyle worthy of God, who invites you into His kingdom and glory.
 

August 12, 2019

Einstein, The Cross, And Our Power To Heal

    Okay, it may take me a while to set up the concept of this post's title, so I hope you will be patient with me. This post comes from a fascinating study I did based on a teaching by Katie Sousa, an anointed Prison Minister who went from a life of crime herself, to being an outspoken advocate for Jesus. She took me on a wild ride from Albert Einstein's theory of space-time continuum, to Jesus's healing hand, to the power of the Cross. So, I hope I can explain how all this connects, using Scripture and interpreting the meaning of specific words and verses in the Bible. Here goes...
     I know that people [including Christians] often have a hard time understanding how our Inner Healing Ministry really works. How can we ask Jesus to be in the Spirit and be present at our table in the here and now, and He can still heal wounds and hurts that happened in the past? That's where the physicist Albert Einstein comes in.
     Einstein created a theory of special relativity which says there is a fundamental link between space and time. The universe can be viewed as having three space dimensions — up/down, left/right, forward/backward — and one time dimension. This 4-dimensional space is referred to as the space-time continuum, which means space and time can exist uninterrupted. Furthermore, this theory says that this continuum is like a fabric or curtain that stretches, bends, and warps. NASA proved this theory with a project called Gravity Probe B, which proved that the earth is actually bending and stretching the fabric of space. So, it was concluded that space and time are like a fabric that can actually stretch and bend.
     And guess what? It was all created by Jesus! This is the Amplified version of Hebrews 1:1-2, which says, God, having spoken to the fathers long ago in [the voices and writings of] the prophets in many separate revelations [each of which set forth a portion of the truth], and in many ways, has in these last days spoken [with finality] to us in [the person of One who is by His character and nature] His Son [namely Jesus], whom He appointed heir and lawful owner of all things, through whom also He created the universe [that is, the universe as a space-time-matter continuum]
     But I want you to see an expanded understanding of this truth, which appears in the Amplified Classic version: But in the last of these days He has spoken to us in [the person of a] Son, Whom He appointed Heir and lawful Owner of all things, also by and through Whom He created the worlds and the reaches of space and the ages of time [He made, produced, built, operated, and arranged them in order]. 
     So, although Einstein may have discovered this theory of time and space, it was our Lord who created them and how they work together. And I hope to show you how He uses His creation to "heal the broken-hearted and set the captives free". 
     In fact, Isaiah 40:22 proves both Einstein's theory and NASA's experiment. It reads: It is He who sits above the circle of the earth, and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers; who stretches out the heavens like a curtain, and spreads them like a tent to dwell in. What is a curtain made of? Fabric! And what does the fabric of space and time [which Jesus created] do? It stretches and bends and warps... as Jesus made it to do, and as He operates and arranges it [according to Hebrews 1:1-3].
     What does all this have to do with our Inner Healing Ministry? It explains how Jesus is able to heal past hurts in the present; and it explains how we are able to travel in the spirit to receive counsel from the throne room of God. Stick with me. I'm still building the premise.
     Can we agree that where God lives in the third Heaven everything exists -- all of our resources, all of our healings, all the angels and it includes all the reaches of space and the ages of time? [Again, see Hebrews 1:2 above].  So, if you lived in the eternal realm with God and Jesus, and you wanted to go to France tonight to witness the French Revolution in 1789, you could because all the ages of time are contained in Heaven. 
     We can't do that here on earth in our fleshly bodies because we are restricted by time and space. Our time is linear and only moves forward at a steady pace. And moving any distance [in space] is restricted to the time it takes you to get there. So, isn't it logical that if we want to gain access to time and space we need to get to the eternal realm of Heaven? 
     This is where the Cross comes in. The fabric of time and space is used to divide us and keep us from getting to Heaven. But Jesus made an opening in that curtain of fabric [of time and space] for us to get there. And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice and yielded up His spirit. And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. And the earth shook, and the rocks were split. Notice it split from top to bottom -- from Heaven to earth. He has given us access! Now, I know there are some Christians who think this can't be achieved until we die and go to Heaven. But Ephesians 2:6 tells us, And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus;  and Philippians 3:20 tells us that our citizenship is in Heaven. When Jesus died and was resurrected, He tore that curtain between Heaven and Earth and we have access to all the reaches of space and all the ages of time NOW!
     So how does this relate to our power and authority to heal others who are tormented by past wounds and hurts? Well, it was at His baptism that Jesus first ripped through the fabric of time and space. He went forward in time to get all the power [from the Cross and His resurrection] that He would need to do His three years of Ministry while on earth. Scripture even tells us that "the Heavens were opened to Him" -- where all the power of God resides (Matthew 3:16). Jesus had to have access to that power from the eternal realm before He started ministering to people to heal them from past events that were wounding them and keeping them in bondage to the Enemy. And Scripture uses a particular word to describe this entire concept of stretching and bending time and space to return to the origin [or cause] of the suffering. It is the Greek word EKTEINO.
     The word ek means "from [or out of] place, time, or cause". In other words the origin or beginning of a situation. And teino means "to stretch". Consider the story of Jesus healing the man with the withered hand, which appears in several of the Gospel accounts. It reads, And He said to the man with the withered hand, “Come here.” And He said to them [the Pharisees], “Is it lawful on the Sabbath to do good or to do harm, to save life or to kill?” But they were silent. And He looked around at them with anger, grieved at their hardness of heart, and said to the man, Stretch out your hand.” He stretched it out, and his hand was restored. The word for "stretch out" is Ekteino! Jesus took the man to the origin [time] when his hand got withered, and to the place it got withered, and the cause [or reason] it got withered and pulled it out at the root (stretched time and space to heal him in the present). And the hand was restored! He didn't change the order of the events, but He changed the consequences or the result of the events.
     Now consider the story of the Leper who was healed: When He came down from the mountain, great crowds followed Him. And behold, a leper came to Him and knelt before Him, saying, “Lord, if you will, you can make me clean.” And Jesus stretched out His hand and touched him, saying, “I will; be clean.” And immediately his leprosy was cleansed (Matthew 8:1-3). Again, Jesus dealt with the time, place, and cause (ek) that the unclean spirit came into the man, and then pulled it out by the root (stretched time and space - teino) to restore the leper to health. 
     There are other examples, too. In Luke 4:31-37, Jesus heals a man with an unclean demon, rebuking the demon and telling it to "Come out!" That's the same word, Ekteino. And all this demonstrates what we do in our Inner Healing Ministry. We go back to the origin [a memory, or an event] in which the wound was inflicted upon the Beloved -- to the time, the place, and the cause, and then we invite Jesus to appear in that memory and pull out the hurt and the wound at the root. He's able to do that because he can bend and stretch time and space to be both in the past and then appear to the Beloved in the present at our table. 
     But here's the Good News for all of us --- when we are baptized, the power of the Cross is released when we go down in the water (and die with Christ); and the power of the Resurrection is released when we come out of the water, releasing power and authority and dominion to us! And we have the ability to stretch time and space when we go in the spirit to the throne of God and appeal for compassion and mercy and grace to help in our time of need. We have the power to experience Ekteino for others [when we stretch time and space to assist Jesus in freeing them from the bondages of their past]; and we have the ability and power to introduce Ekteino to them and to ourselves, when we go into the future and lay hold of our promises and bring them into the now! 
     Nothing is impossible for our Lord! We are not limited by time or space when we recognize that we are spirit beings who have access to all the reaches of space and the ages of time. Isn't it amazing? We serve a Mighty God! 

Psalm 31:14-15    But I trust in you, O Lord; I say, “You are my God.” My times are in your hand; rescue me from the hand of my enemies and from my persecutors!  
     

August 9, 2019

Why We Americans Have A Hard Time Understanding The Kingdom of God

     
      I am guilty, as I'm sure many of you are, of reading my Bible for years and never grasping or perceiving what Jesus meant when He talked about the Kingdom of God. To be honest, it's almost as if, when reading the Word, I was incapable of recognizing that concept, and therefore just ignored it.  I had been taught throughout my Church experience that the primary message of Jesus was the one of Salvation, yet I only find that word used or referenced six times in the four Gospels, and only once by Jesus (He spoke of being "born again in John 3:1-5). Yet, the Kingdom of God is mentioned at least 62 times, and nearly every time by Jesus, Himself. So why haven't I asked the appropriate questions about the Kingdom, or sought more understanding of why my Lord and Savior spoke so much about it? Why haven't I heard the Gospel of the Kingdom of God taught from the pulpits of the churches I have attended? As simple and absurd as it may sound, I believe those answers lie in the fact that we in the Western world, and especially here in America, have no concept of what it means to live in a kingdom or under a King.
     Think about it. Our nation is both a republic and a representative democracy. And that makes a huge difference in our ability to understand the importance of Jesus's declaration that the Kingdom of God has arrived! A republic is ruled by representatives of the citizen body. Modern republics are founded on the idea that sovereignty rests with the people. As a representative democracy, we have a Government by the people, exercised either directly or through elected representatives. And, as a nation, we have adopted Abraham Lincoln's quotation from his Gettysburg Address: "we must ensure that government of the people, by the people, [and] for the people, shall not perish from the earth."
     Can you see that the focus is on "the people" as the arbiter of government? Yet, Jesus clearly said that we should desire to seek and enter the Kingdom of God. And where does the sovereignty and government derive from in a kingdom? Not from the citizens -- but from the King! But most Westerners, and specifically the citizens of the United States, have never lived in a kingdom nor under a king, so we have little idea of what that looks like or how a kingdom is ruled. In fact, our national DNA is founded on rebellion against a kingdom and king! We even wrote a Declaration of Independence from that king, declaring that Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness were inherent rights, endowed by our Creator. And then in that same paragraph, we set the tone for generations of Americans to miss the knowledge that the Bible has tried to impart to us ... there is a Kingdom that we are to enter that will secure all those rights, privileges, benefits, liberty, security, abundance, health, and welfare that we seek as citizens today. But it is a kingdom of heavenly origin, not earthly, and the Ruler of this Kingdom in Heaven determined to establish a colony of His Kingdom here on earth, ruled by men made in His image, serving as Vice-Regents [assistants with power to act when their superior is absent]. 
     To further understand how this "kingdom concept" pertains to the Bible and helps us to comprehend our purpose on this earth, we need to agree that the foundation and qualification of kingship is rightful ownership of land. In a kingdom, the land is the personal property of the king, and it is this ownership right that designates him as Lord [Master]. In a kingdom, all the land within the kingdom belongs to the king. Psalm 24:1-2 tells us, The world and all that is in it belong to the Lord; the earth and all who live on it are His. He built it on the deep waters beneath the earth and laid its foundations in the ocean depths.
     True, Psalm 115:16 says, The heavens belong to our God; they are his alone, but He has given us the earth and put us in charge. Now, to us Greek-minded Americans, we must be reminded that this verse is not saying God gave us ownership of the land called earth. At any time, He could take it back; that would be His exclusive right. When God "gave" us the earth, He did not relinquish His ownership. We possess the earth as a trust, or stewardship. He gave us dominion [authority, jurisdiction, right to govern in His stead] over the earth in order to extend the government of Heaven to this earthly realm. He gave us rulership, but not ownership. It is a privilege to rule this earth, and we must not take it for granted; we will be held accountable to the King for how we manage His kingdom here on planet earth.
     I'm sure some of you can see how the Enemy has perverted that concept in our modern era. We have segments of our population who sound the alarm that we are not good stewards of our planet and demand that the health of the planet be our top priority. There are also church denominations who preach a "green gospel" about caring for the planet. I agree that we are to be good stewards of the earth and environmental issues should not be ignored. But I'm left wondering if these people understand that the earth is not their land; that it actually belongs to [and is owned by] the King of Heaven? 
     But back to my original premise -- there is a struggle for us in the Western world and America to truly understand the Gospel of the Kingdom; the Good News that Jesus came to reinstitute the government of Heaven on earth through the rulership of Saved men. The Cross and faith in the risen Christ is the doorway [entry] back into the Kingdom of God on earth that was first established in Genesis and which was relinquished in the Garden of Eden. Jesus went to the Cross to restore the Kingdom of God on earth and to restore our rightful role as ambassadors of Heaven's kingdom. In essence, He came to earth to declare that He was King; that a King had come, a Kingdom had arrived, and this Kingdom was available to anyone who wanted to enter.
     At this point, it is very important that we understand our identity within this Kingdom. In John 1:12, the Bible says, But those who embraced Him and believed in His name were given authority to become the children of God! In other words, Jesus came so that we could receive the full rights of sons and daughters of the King. Even though the earthly kingdoms we have known throughout history do not meet the righteousness of the Heavenly Kingdom, they still represent the kingdom model. Therefore, a son of a king will be a king. That is why Jesus is called "King of kings". We are destined to be kings; to rule and reign as sons and daughters of the King! 
     Just as a king is never voted into power, nor can be voted out of power, our authority comes from our birthright as sons and daughters of the King. And just as a king's word is law, we should be the determiners of the laws of our land, according to our King's decrees and statutes. An earthly king who was after God's own heart wrote, The ordinances of the Lord are sure and altogether righteous (Psalm 19:9). 
     When a king is present, his authority resides in his very presence -- not in a document or a place. Because our King Jesus is always present with us, His authority is present -- the same authority He has conferred upon us. We need to start walking in that authority because we are Kingdom citizens [having entered the Kingdom through our salvation experience] and sons and daughters of the King. We represent His glory, His righteousness, His justice, and His compassion; reflecting His Nature and Character. 
     We are not to confuse our citizenship in the Kingdom with our American citizenship. I found it interesting that the five top traits of being an American are listed as Independence, Opportunity, Innovation, Diversity, and Generosity. But in the Kingdom of God, it is His traits that matter because in a kingdom concept, citizens are to be obedient followers, not self-governing and independent. America is known as the Land of Opportunity, where the wealth of self-made men is revered. But in a kingdom, the king owns everything in his kingdom, and a righteous and benevolent king amasses his wealth for the welfare of his citizens. That is why Jesus tells us not to worry about what we are going to eat, or drink, or wear; because our Heavenly Father knows what we need. But we are to seek His kingdom and righteousness and all these things will be given to us. At the same time, the Bible tells us that we have a Father who has a Kingdom in Heaven, and wants to give us good gifts. Our welfare is the responsibility of our King and He will take care of us. 
     Then there is Innovation, which is highly prized in our American DNA. It is said that we lead the world in creativity and originality. But our Father's Kingdom is perfect; there is no need for us to alter or transform His original design; His Kingdom is the model. Again, in America we take pride in our Diversity; it has made us the melting pot of the world. But in a kingdom, the king is the ultimate and only source of authority. Our King is sovereign and His sovereignty is absolute; there is no room for diversification or multiple standards. Finally, there is the subject of Generosity. One of the rights we have as Kingdom citizens, and heirs of the Kingdom, is that we belong to the King of Heaven, who is a righteous and benevolent Lord who graciously allows us to use and fully appropriate and distribute His riches and resources and all good things -- as long as we remember who owns them. If we begin to give to others from a frame of mind that we own it and it is ours to give, then we make ourselves a lord. In the Kingdom of God on earth there can be only one Lord. 
     I know this is only a cursory examination of why we Americans have trouble understanding the Good News that the Kingdom of God has come and is now operating in the earth. But I wanted to give you something to think about, and a concept that might be new to you. In summary, let me ask you a few questions ... Can you renew your mind to accept and apply the understanding that we are not to be independent-minded followers of Christ, but rather citizens in a Kingdom governed by a benevolent, righteous, and just King who is Lord of our lives? Has Religion redefined your original role and purpose in the Kingdom? Are you willing to see yourself from God's perspective and step into your Kingdom assignment?  The answers to these questions can change your identity and transform your life. Spend some time with the Father and hear what He has to say on the subject. Blessings!

I am indebted to the late Dr. Myles Munroe and his teachings on the Kingdom of God. I have grown in my understanding and spiritual insight, thanks to his faithful preaching of the Gospel of the Kingdom!

Matthew 25:34    Then the King will turn to those on His right and say, 'You have a special place in My Father’s heart. Come and experience the full inheritance of the kingdom realm that has been destined for you from before the foundation of the world!' 

August 6, 2019

Mixed Messages

     I am oftentimes perplexed at the interpretation of Scripture from people whom I greatly respect and who I know walk in reverent obedience to the Lord. No wonder the Body of Christ is often confused and question their own life's journey and purpose. For instance, I was excited to receive my monthly newsletter from an organization founded by a Scripturally-sound Messianic Jewish leader. The lead article was entitled Rock and Key, and perfectly coincided with the recent teachings Mark and I have been conducting on the Gospel of the Kingdom.
     I was encouraged by the message of Matthew 16:13-19 that represented a historic breakthrough for the disciples following Jesus, and should be serving as a rediscovery for us in the 21st Century. These important verses read as follows:

13 Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, He asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” 14 And they said, “Some say John the Baptist, others say Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” 15 He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” 16 Simon Peter replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” 17 And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. 18 And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my ekklesia, and the gates of hades shall not prevail against it. 19 I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”

     I agreed with the article Rock and Key that this passage is important on so many levels. First, notice that Jesus asks who the people say the Son of Man is -- not the Son of God. Here, He is wanting to see how He is being perceived. Up til now He has been careful to guard His deity from the general public, and has concentrated on preaching [and teaching His disciples] that the Kingdom of Heaven was to be restored to the earth. This moment at Caesarea Philippi marks a decisive change in His ministry. Now He is ready for His disciples to gain the bigger picture of who He is, why He came, and that He must soon be rejected, killed, and will rise from the dead three days later. This leads to deeper knowledge that all those who choose to follow Him, must be willing to suffer in this life, as He's about to, in order to gain eternal life in Heaven's Kingdom.
     The fact that Peter receives the revelation that Jesus is the Son of [the Living] God means Peter and the disciples are ready to receive authority from heaven through Him. If they can rightly know who He is, then they will soon be equipped with spiritual authority to carry on His assignment. I agreed with the author that this spiritual authority can be administered directly through His Name -- by declaring in the Name of Jesus. Then the author said it could be delegated through the leadership of the local congregation. In both ways, all spiritual authority comes through submission to the One from whom it is given. And being under the cover of authority is a place of protection, where it is safe, secure, and stable -- that is where the rock comes in.
     It is from the stable foundation of Jesus and the covering of His blood that we are protected from the forces of evil in this dark world and able to release God's good, perfect and acceptable will into this earth. In fact, we are so confident in the power of God in us [Holy Spirit] and our authority from Heaven that even the "gates of hades" cannot defeat us. [This particular site at Caesarea Philippi was considered the entrance (gate) to the underworld of death]. We have so much power and authority to release God's will that what we "bind" or "loose" on earth will be bound or loosed in heaven. And I understand the Scripture to mean that the Lord Jesus said He would build His ekklesia (legislative body of believers] to govern the earth in the model God has established in heaven. 
     As I have pointed out before, Jesus did not say He would build a Church, as in a building full of believers. He would build a group of believers gathered together to carry out the government of Heaven on the earth. So, when the author of this article wrote "if we do not have a personal revelation of Jesus and/or we are not members in a local congregation, we have little authority to influence the world for good by the kingdom of God", well, I was dumbfounded. He went on to say that our influence requires both the revelation of Jesus (I agree!) and the active membership in a local congregation.
     To me, that negates the authority of the believer as an individual. Now, I agree that the power of a committed ekklesia can be more powerful by virtue of the number of obedient spiritual warriors [working in their legal authority] to pray down strongholds and govern in the Name of Jesus. But to say that you must be "an active member in a local congregation" does not fit the biblical model that Jesus shows us. I cannot find anywhere in the Gospels that Jesus demands of His disciples that they must be members of a local synagogue to receive His power and authority. In fact, our English Bibles only record Him using the word "Church" twice, one in the aforementioned Matthew 16:18 and again, in Matthew 18:17-18. In both instances, the English word is mistranslated and He actually used the Greek word [adopted by the Romans] of Ekklesia, meaning "a political assembly of citizens" -- it is not a religious congregation. But down through the centuries, we have loosely substituted "church, congregation, and assembly" for this very deliberate word of "ekklesia". 
     Yes, Jesus taught in the synagogues, but the purpose was to introduce the Gospel of the Kingdom and the government of earth according to the Father's will. He taught in order to defeat the works of the devil [and his kingdom] by bringing a superior kingdom that offered Salvation as the entry point to a life spent transforming the earth [and the lives of men] to reflect Heaven on earth. 
     To say that this can only be accomplished in a religious group setting does not sound like anything my Lord spoke. Now this particular author doesn't go as far as others I have read, who say that Matthew 10:1 (Jesus gathered his twelve disciples and imparted to them authority to cast out demons and to heal every sickness and every disease) was only for a particular group of people for a particular time of ministry. This is known as Cessationism, a doctrine which teaches that spiritual gifts, power and authority ceased when the original apostles died. 
     So, I guess the whole point of this blog post is that it concerns me when leaders of our faith tell us that we have no power and authority as an individual. What I see is that all the parables are teaching lessons that revolve around individuals -- not groups. Everyone He healed was on an individual basis. They came to Him, one-by-one, and He healed them. Even the early Church knew their mission was to raise up disciples of Christ who would go out into the world, as individuals, continuing the work He commanded. As a disciple of Christ myself, I am not on any roll of a local church or congregation. But Mark and I are working to be a part of a committed ekklesia who will come together as a local body of believers who, in contending prayer and fasting, and our legal power and authority, can transform our families, communities, and nation. 
    But, even when not in the company of these obedient ambassadors of Heaven, I know that I, as an individual believer, have been given Christ's authority and the power of the Holy Spirit to effect change on this earth; to take back territories from the kingdom of darkness for my Father's Kingdom in Heaven. Could this just be another tactic of the Enemy to shut down our ability to defeat him? If  he can convince us [out of fear or a lie about needing a covering other than Jesus], then we will be rendered ineffective in stopping his kingdom from advancing. 
     This is what I know for certain: that when I encounter someone in a WalMart parking lot that needs a healing hand; or Mark and I sit with a wounded and tormented believer at our table; or we are called to teach a hungry group of Christians about the Gospel of the Kingdom, we are under the covering and protection of our Lord Jesus. He doesn't require our membership in a local church or congregation to continue His work. His Word tells me that whoever believes in Him will also do the works that He did; and greater works than these will we do, because He has gone to the Father (John 14:12). He needs all of us -- individuals and corporate bodies of believers -- to continue His work! And His Word tells me that He has imparted to me all His authority to trample over Satan's kingdom. I can trample upon every demon before me and overcome every power Satan possesses. Absolutely nothing will be able to harm me as I walk in this authority (Luke 10:19).
     Again, I say that He needs us all! Don't believe Satan's lie that you do not have our Lord's permission to represent Him! You are an ambassador of Heaven, and a child of God, made in His image. Your authority comes from God's Word, and being diligent to follow the Word, not your own will or any other man's. Your power comes from the baptism of the Holy Spirit in you. And whether you walk out your faith as an individual, as a part of an Ekklesia, or within the corporate body of the Church -- He can use you! Do not be made irrelevant by man-made doctrine!

Titus 2:13-15   ... our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession who are zealous for good works.  Declare these things; exhort and rebuke with all authority. Let no one disregard you.
     


     

August 3, 2019

Vanity of Vanities!

     I was going to title this blog post "Nothing New Under The Sun", a quote from Ecclesiastes 1:9-11, in which the author bemoans, "That which has been is that which will be [again], And that which has been done is that which will be done again. So there is nothing new under the sun ... There is no remembrance of earlier things, Nor also of the later things that are to come; There will be for them no remembrance by generations who will come after them." Then I recalled that I had already used that title in a post from June, 2013. But once again, the headlines have made it relevant.
     As I see God moving among His remnant, and see the Gospel of the Kingdom being rediscovered among Christ's followers, I hear the Holy Spirit and our Lord warning me not to become so immersed in teaching the Good News of the Kingdom that I am unaware of what the Enemy is doing in response to our obedience. They are saying "Don't stay focused on the world, but be mindful of [and informed about] what is going on. That is the duty of a 'watcher on the wall'. And when necessary, give My Sheep the knowledge to overcome". And that is the purpose of today's post.
     If you've paid any attention at all to the news cycle in recent days -- and believe me, I do not obsess over them -- then you cannot escape the evil machinations of Jeffrey Epstein, the politically, financially, and socially well-connected financier, who also happens to be a registered sex offender, and has now been charged with sex trafficking and conspiracy to traffic minors for sex. As abominable as these charges are, they are not the purpose of this post. An article in The New York Times this week revealed that Epstein had plans to repeat one of Satan's strategies that is as old as the Bible. Let me explain...
     The article's headline reads like this: Jeffrey Epstein Hoped To Seed The Human Race With His DNA. A sensational headline? For Sure. But as a Christian, this plan should sound familiar. If it doesn't, then Ecclesiastes 1:9-11 should enlighten you ... There will be no remembrance [of earlier things] by generations who will come after them. So, why should this news about Epstein strike a chord with Believers? God is trying to show us that what the fallen angel, Lucifer, tried to do to prohibit God's plan to redeem mankind is still very much on the Enemy's radar. Those of us who have ears to hear, will know what I am implying.  It's as if, in recent years, God has removed the mystery of Genesis 6:4 to modern-day Christians.  Where once, we just read this passage ("there were giants on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them") as meaning earthly kings married women against their will and produced giants. 
     But as our desire to understand the Hebrew origins and words of the Bible has intensified, we have come to understand that the Hebrew word translated as "giants" in the King James Bible, is actually the word "Nephilim", which in the Hebrew means "to fall; fallen; cast down."  So are you beginning to see where I'm headed?  These "men" who bore children to earthly women were part of Satan's contingent of fallen angels, and part of the spiritual battle to corrupt the DNA of God's creation.  If Satan could pollute man's holy genetic code, (which produces a body worthy of housing a spirit made in the image of God), then he could prevent God's Son (who is perfect) from being born and becoming King of this world; which in turn made it possible for the Kingdom of God to be reinstated upon the earth, thereby defeating Satan's kingdom.
     Satan failed in that plot, and King Jesus was not only born, but He has commissioned us as His ambassadors to overcome the ruler [and god] of this dark world, and to reclaim our dominion over the earth on behalf of our Creator, restoring His will "on earth, as it is in Heaven". But that isn't the only time Satan tried this same strategy. History has recorded that he attempted it through his human agents as recently as the last 90 years or so. In fact, there is plenty of evidence to suggest that Adolph Hitler was interested in the occult, magic, and the paganism of his Germanic roots.  He is said to have marked extensive passages in a 1923 book, titled Magic: History, Theory, and Practice, including one that reads, "He who does not have the demonic seed within himself will never give birth to a magical world". Can you see the same ideology as Genesis 6:4?
     Put simply, our DNA is a highly prized target of the Enemy. It plays a critical role in controlling how cells, organs and other tissues behave. When writing this blog five years ago, I ran across an article in which scientists claimed that beginning 5 to 20 years ago, our DNA began changing. Supposedly, the scientific explanation was this:  "It is a mutation of our species into something for which the end result is not yet known."  One doctor reported that "people are changing at the cellular level. I am working with three children right now who have three DNA helixes (we normally have one double helix)."  What was especially alarming was the scientist's response when asked what characteristics these children displayed:  "These are children who can move objects across the room just by concentrating on them, or they can fill glasses of water just by looking at them. They’re telepathic. You would almost think by knowing these children that they are half angelic or superhuman, but they’re not. I think they are what we are growing into during the next few decades."
     That should be a huge warning to us, but it is amazing how quickly our culture will embrace any kind of technology that promises we can escape the deterioration of the human body. Just a few posts back, I wrote about Elon Musk's company Neuralink that is ready to "begin outfitting human brains with faster input and output by next year", all done with a chip to "achieve a sort of symbiosis with artificial intelligence".
     But Satan isn't only relying on new technology to change our DNA. He is still willing to engage in his old plan of a "seed war", as exemplified by Jeffrey Epstein's diabolical story. As The New York Times article alleges, "Mr. Epstein, over the years, confided to scientists and others about his scheme ... [his] vision reflected his longstanding fascination with what has become known as transhumanism: the science of improving the human population through technologies like genetic engineering and artificial intelligence. Critics have likened transhumanism to a modern-day version of eugenics, the discredited field of improving the human race through controlled breeding." But breeding with whom? Or what? Certainly, Genesis 6:4 shows us one view of demonic breeders; Hitler had another plan with his perversion of eugenics; and apparently science now has a way to alter or mutate our DNA through genetic engineering by, of, and possibly with artificial intelligence.
     With his millions of dollars, and his fascination with "perfecting the human genome", Mr. Epstein attracted scientists such as George M. Church, a molecular engineer who has worked to identify genes that could be altered to create superior humans; and Stephen Jay Gould, a paleontologist and evolutionary biologist. Add these scientific connections to Epstein's desire to inseminate multiple women with his sperm to give birth to his babies; and his desire to have his brain and penis frozen through cryonics, and you just have to wonder if this is Satan's latest plot to corrupt humankind's DNA.
     But I just want to go on record as quoting Dr. Fritz Albert Popp, a noted German biophysicist, who said, "We know today that man, essentially, is a being of light ... We are still on the threshold of fully understanding the complex relationship between light and life, but we can now say emphatically, that the function of our entire metabolism is dependent on light."
     Too bad that the world of Science doesn't recognize that it is the Light, with a capital L, that sustains our bodies and our spirits.  If our DNA is mutating, it is by diabolical means in an all-out spiritual battle.  (See this recent post about the ability of AI to bend light in our bodies). Remember, Jesus tells us in Matthew 24:37, "When the Son of Man returns, it will be like it was in the days of Noah".  Spiritual warfare, and polluted and corrupt DNA is what He is talking about.
     Five years ago, almost to the day, I wrote "We're almost there!" But then, the evidence of Satan's schemes were mostly undercover in the scientific community. Today, the inventions of Elon Musk and the depraved sinfulness of Jeffrey Epstein are freely proclaimed; out in the open, visible and undisguised.  
     "Vanity of vanities" is how Ecclesiastes, chapter one begins. The Hebrew word for "vanity" is Hebel, meaning "something worthless or purposeless: signifying an idol, which is unsubstantial, worthless, and vain".  All these efforts to defeat man's design are part of Satan's schemes, and they are all in vain. And man's vanishing pleasures and empty satisfactions, as terrifying as they may seem, are fleeting. All the answers to life are found in God. Those in opposition to the Holy Spirit and spiritual men will only find that which is futile and temporary; all this has been tried before -- there is truly nothing new under the sun. What has been tried in ages past, will be tried again ... and God will always be Sovereign. But it is incumbent upon us to remember, and watch, and warn. Keep your spiritual eyes open!

Romans 2:5     But because of your calloused heart and refusal to change direction, you are piling up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath, when God’s righteous judgment is revealed. 
    
     

July 31, 2019

The Holy Spirit : The Key To Enter The Kingdom of God

   
      This past weekend, Mark and I gave a presentation on the Gospel of the Kingdom for Luke 4:18 Ministries in Austin, Texas. As the time approached, I will tell you that I was a little nervous. Speaking in front of groups of people is getting easier for me, but it does not come naturally. Then my good friend, Mary, gave me a new perspective about this disposition of mine. When we arrived at the venue and I expressed my concern, she looked me right in the eyes, and said, "Oh, that's just your flesh. Your spirit is excited!" And at that moment everything changed. She was right! My spirit was excited about the opportunity to share this important message about the Kingdom of God to the people gathered there; all of whom I knew were never going to be the same after we showed them what they'd missed in their Bibles and in their Churches. After all, we wanted them to have the same experience of divine revelation we had when this amazing Truth was revealed to us. 
     It was such a joy to see minds being renewed to God's original plan for mankind. There was so much to share, and to be honest, I feel we barely scratched the surface of what God wants us to rediscover in His Word.  There are so many aspects of the Gospel of the Kingdom that we need to bring to light, that we could spend days teaching on the "Good News" Jesus brought.  For this day, it was important to show that the reason we were created was to be God's representatives and ambassadors on earth. The word representative is a very serious word. It means one chosen or appointed to act or speak for another; and someone in particular. I sometimes think we forget, or don't see, who we were made to be, and what is our role in the earth.
     Genesis 1:26, 28 make it very clear that we are made in the image of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit [Let us make man in Our image, after Our likeness]. I love a teaching by the late Dr. Myles Munroe, in which he says, "You don't have a spirit .... You are a spirit!"  He goes on to teach that, as the Bible says, God formed man of the dust of the ground (Genesis 2:7), so we are "a spirit in a dirt body, known as a human".  This is important because we need to understand why God only gave humans the authority [to represent Him] on the earth. Dr. Munroe gives a quick etymology lesson: the word humus is the word for dirt. The word for man is Ish, and man is a spirit being. Man is a spirit, but his body is humus.  In essence we are a humus man [spirit being in a dirt body], shortened to human. Follow me, so far? 
     When you think about it, that is a complicated concept, but it is important in knowing God's plan and our purpose. His plan began with giving humans dominion over the earth (Genesis 1:26, 28): Let them (humans) have dominion over all the earth ... God said to them, subdue it and have dominion over every living thing that moves on the earth. So the only being that has legal rights and authority to dominate the earth [given by God] is a spirit being in a dirt body. 
     God's Word never changes, right? So, here is a nugget of wisdom from Dr. Munroe that rocked Mark and I, and I think it will you, too .... "Any spirit without a dirt body is illegal on earth. Now you know why demons are illegal. Your most powerful weapon on the earth is not your spirit. When we die and lose our body, we become illegal, too, and we have to leave the earth. We call it death. We need to understand that our bodies keep us legal on the earth, and this is why demons are looking for a body to enter. They are trying to become legal, so they can become functional on earth".
     NOTE: I want to stop right here and interject an important point. I am not saying that someone who comes to us for Inner Healing and Deliverance and is being tormented by a spirit of anger, or a spirit of unworthiness, etc. is possessed. That is why when we confront these spirits [in a deliverance session] we ask if they have legal authority, and they say "no", because the person is being "oppressed" by the demon of anger, and is not "possessed" by it. It is a matter of torment and not possession, because the demon has not entered their body, they are just whispering lies that the Beloved is believing. That is why we can cast them out, because they have no legal authority according to God's own rules. And we must remember that our Father is a God of order and has set spiritual laws in place to govern His Kingdom, which is why our legal authority is so important. Obviously, I am not saying that our spirit is unimportant -- it is the connection with our Lord and how we have relationship with the Father. But in order to carry out the assignments our spirits have been given, we must have a body here on earth. Make sense?
     Now, it is also important to understand Scripture as God intended. He gave man dominion over the earth instead of giving it to Himself. He created us to be His agents, or ambassadors, who would extend His Kingdom of Heaven to the earth. So He wants to use us in order to become involved in the earth. But it is the spirit in us [which is Him in the form of the Holy Spirit] that enables Him to rule through us. It is God's plan to rule the world through the unseen Holy Spirit, living in the unseen spirit of man, which dwells in our physical [seen] body. 
     Consider this, the Holy Spirit didn't indwell anyone in the Old Testament. He came upon men when God needed them empowered for His service, giving them special skills to perform certain tasks. For instance Judges 3:10 tells us, And the Spirit of the Lord came upon him (Othniel, younger brother of Caleb), and he judged Israel, and went out to war; Judges 6:34 says, But the Spirit of the Lord came upon Gideon; then he blew the trumpet, and the Abiezrites gathered behind him; Judges 14:6 says this about Samson: And the Spirit of the Lord came mightily upon him, and he tore the lion apart as one would have torn apart a young goat, though he had nothing in his hand. And the Bible records that "the hand of the Lord" came upon all the Old Testament prophets to prophesy and do His will.
     That's the difference between the presence of the Holy Spirit in the Old Covenant and the New ... there wasn't a person who could permanently host the Holy Spirit in the Old Testament because there wasn't a sacrifice good enough to make them holy. The Spirit would come upon them to do God's will [through a miracle, a prophecy, or to be strong to do a great work] and then He would leave. And it is important that we recognize that while Jesus was on the earth in the New Testament, there is no record of anyone else hosting the Holy Spirit. Why? Because the power of the Holy Spirit entered Him at His baptism and He carried it from that day forward! And His ultimate assignment was to get the power and the authority of the Holy Spirit into us so that we could carry on His assignment to restore the Kingdom of God on earth back to man.
     You see, while Christ was on the earth, He lent the power of the Holy Spirit that was in Him to men. Luke 9:1 validates this truth so well: And He called the twelve together, and gave them power and authority over all the demons and to heal diseases. But after His resurrection, He appears in the Upper Room and breathed on the Disciples and said, Receive the Holy Spirit. Furthermore, He said, As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you. What was Jesus sent to do? As He says over and over in the Gospels, He was sent to bring the Good News that the Kingdom of God was going to be restored on the earth. And it would be accomplished through Saved men. How do we know that?
     Every parable He taught was a lesson on what the Kingdom of God in Heaven was like, and how we are to walk in it on the earth. He told us to seek the Kingdom first, above all else. He told us to pray that His Father's Kingdom would come, on earth as it is in Heaven. He told us to "ask and keep on asking, and it will be given to you; seek and keep on seeking, and you will find; knock and keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you." He told us that our Father in Heaven knows what we need, and if we, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to our children, how much more will our heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those of us who ask Him! And, He told us it is the Father's good pleasure to give us the Kingdom... but it is incumbent upon us to use our free will to ask for it, seek it, and knock until it is opened to us. He will not force it upon us. And the door to enter into the Kingdom is our Salvation ... unless one is born [again] of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. The Holy Spirit indwells us at our Salvation experience and is the key to entering the Kingdom of God!
     It is so easy to see once the veil is removed from our spiritual eyes. In fact, everything about the message of Jesus in the four Gospels takes on new significance. Just read the Word again with a new perspective ... underline every time Jesus talks about the Kingdom and ask the Holy Spirit to renew your mind about what your purpose is. We are a spirit in the likeness of our Father and Creator, sent here to live in a body and to continue the work of our Lord, restoring the dominion of the earth to God's original purpose... that earth would perfectly reflect Heaven. It is time we recognize the fullness of our purpose and take back the spiritual government of the earth, ruling it as it is in Heaven.

Mark 1:15    The time is fulfilled, and the Kingdom of God is at hand [has arrived]; repent [change the way you think; seek God's purpose for your life] and believe in the gospel [the Good News].