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

December 8, 2019

Christians: Do You Act Out Of Your Soul Or Your Spirit?

     That's a big question, and I ask it because I'm not sure that Christians understand what it means to know who we are in the Spirit. In fact, I would suggest that most Christians live their lives from their soul, rather than their spirit. Even though we all quote the Scriptures, For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart (Hebrews 4:12), and [God] has raised us up with Him and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 2:6), do we really understand the full implications of those verses? After our salvation, what part of us is seated in Christ in Heaven? Certainly it is not our flesh; we still remain on this earth.
     That leads to another question -- do you know that we are a three-part being -- body, soul, and spirit? And do you understand that our soul and spirit are meant to be separate entities, as Ephesians 2:6 suggests? We all know what our body is -- our flesh, the physical tent that houses our soul and spirit. Our soul is our mind, our [free] will, and our emotions. Our spirit is what identifies us with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. We are made in their image ... he who is joined to the Lord becomes one spirit with Him. 
     But here's the thing; too often a person's soul refuses to submit to the spirit, and can easily overrun or smother the spirit. And just as common is the scenario that a Christian thinks they are hearing in the spirit, when in reality it is their soul who is running the show. They respond to what they are thinking [in their physical mind] or what they are feeling [in their emotions], and both of those are elements of the soul, NOT the spirit -- and then they proclaim they are living by God's directive to their spirit. But is there fruit in their life that is evidence of this claim?
     Sadly, as the human race has increased in knowledge over the last 2000 years, and as we have experienced new technology and gained new skills, it has resulted in us living from our flesh and our souls, rather than our spirits. In our arrogance, we have come to rely less on our spiritual connection with Christ, and more on our own accomplishments and abilities. We may have grown in our knowledge of things of the world, but we are also more ignorant of the spiritual realm in which our spirits have citizenship -- our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ (Philippians 3:20). This has also resulted in the fact that we don't know how to engage our spirit because we credit what we think or what we feel as a word from our spirit, when in reality it originates in our souls and flesh.
     Here's a concept I'd like to propose to you: God designed our souls to interact with our spirits and our flesh. In other words, consider this: Our souls are designed to receive divine inspiration from our spirit and then birth it into the natural through our flesh -- a heavenly download if you will from Heaven to our spirit. Our soul received the revelation from our spirit, and then we follow through in our flesh. But if we don't know who we are in our spirit, then it's likely that we will be more influenced by own mind and emotions than we are by God's opinions. 
     Remember, Jesus is our model. He said He did nothing that He had not heard or seen from the Father (John 5:19 and 12:49). Can we say the same? When we tell people, "I heard the Lord say" ... or "The Holy Spirit showed me"... is that the real truth? Are we sure? Did those revelations originate in the mind of God, or do they coincide with our own desires? 
     How many of you truly believe you became "a new creation" when you received Christ as your Savior? And what does that look like? I mean, your body stayed the same right? And your soul only begins to change when you use your free will to renew those parts of it called your mind and emotions. That's a growth process. BUT your spirit is reborn immediately as exemplified in Ephesians 4:24: "[the regenerated and renewed nature], created in God’s image, [godlike] in the righteousness and holiness of the truth [living in a way that expresses to God your gratitude for your salvation]." We are spirit from Spirit, and it is true that we are born with a sin nature; a nature that is unlike the Lord's and separates us from Him. But again, I remind you of 1 Corinthians 6:17, But he who is joined to the Lord becomes one spirit with Him. At the moment of your salvation, your spirit becomes one with His; you are a new creation, with a new spirit and a new nature. But do you recognize that truth and receive it?
     And do you understand the bigger truth that your spirit can be in heaven and also interface with your soul and flesh here on earth? Again, Jesus modeled that for us as a human man on earth whose spirit interacted with God in heaven. Like Jesus, we can receive counsel, resources, knowledge and breakthrough in our lives IF we actively engage our spirits to receive God's downloads, spend time in our spirits to understand them, then translate these revelations to our souls [through our renewed minds] and finally walk them out in the flesh. 
     But we need to have a relationship with our own spirit, knowing who we are in Christ, and where we are seated.We must come to the knowledge that we are designed to be spirit beings, having access to the spirit realm in Heaven and the Presence of God and Jesus. We have been made a spirit being, yet having a soul and living in a physical body. As Christians, we must begin to experience the spiritual realm and cooperate with Heaven to see God's Kingdom come and His will be done. We must begin to think like God and act like Jesus and hear/see with the help of the Holy Spirit. Then we can collaborate with Them and bring heaven and earth into agreement through our thoughts and actions. 
     All of Heaven’s resources are available to us through our spirit, which in proper alignment with our soul, prompts our minds to think and act righteously. I know I'm being repetitive, but it is so important that we get this ... Our human spirit will get a download from God [through the Holy Spirit] and then impart the divine thought or concept to our soul [which includes our mind]. The soul has to come together with the spirit in order to be implanted with the seeds of revelation, breakthrough, and those things that have been written upon our scroll in heaven. If our mind has been renewed to think from heaven’s perspective, rather than this world’s, then we will be able to receive the heavenly concept, plan according to God’s ruling principles, act on what has been revealed, and produce fruit for the Kingdom. Our mind/soul and the spirit must work together to give birth to the designs of God in the earth, and our spirit has to take precedence over our soul! 
     So, it is my earnest prayer that the Body of Christ come into a fuller knowledge and relationship with our spirits; that we begin to encounter Jesus through true and authentic spiritual experiences ... spirit to Spirit. Only then will we learn to walk in the path Jesus modeled.

Ecclesiastes 12:7     then the dust [out of which God made man’s body] will return to the earth as it was, and the spirit will return to God who gave it.

December 5, 2019

The History Of Christmas Revisited

     This is a re-post of an article I wrote in 2016 on the History of Christmas. Back in 2013, I had begun doing research on where our Christmas traditions came from and was astounded to find so many pagan roots. I will admit that I was angry that the Church had promulgated so many of the false traditions as religious truth. I had to take my confusion to the Lord and let Him help me work through the feeling that I had been deceived and that God's truth had been compromised to promote a false story about what has become a "sacred" holiday to most Christians.
     I will tell you that I became almost religious in my commitment against the holiday for the first couple of years. And I still am pretty disgusted at the commercialization and the exploitation of our faith. I still do not put up a Christmas tree, but I do put up my manger scene and some meaningful artifacts that celebrate the Lord's birth (even though it was not on December 25th, as you will see when you read this blog post). I have been able to reconcile my sentimental memories of childhood Christmases with my adult understanding of how the Enemy has manipulated man through the institution of this holiday, and I am now at peace with where I stand. 
     I can still enjoy all the Christmas movies and the lights and the songs of my childhood, but I don't pretend that they have anything to do with Jesus. I know that I am viewing them all through the lens of my flesh, while my spirit recognizes how my God wishes to be truly celebrated. I don't need to justify myself or my beliefs, and what someone else chooses to do is up to them. And that is a decision you will have to make for yourself as you read and contemplate the following information. I do not condemn anyone for their choices -- you must decide what you will do with this knowledge. And perhaps the best thing is to take it to the Lord, just as I did. Your spirit will recognize His voice, and let Him counsel and comfort you.

A 1783 painting, titled "Saturnalia" by Antoine Callet
     I know I will be accused of being a Scrooge during this Christmas season, but I must tell you that it is encouraging to me that our society and culture are beginning to deal in Truth.  With each passing year, we are accepting that the origins of our Christmas celebrations have less to do with Christ, and more with modern commercialization, ancient rituals and even pagan practices. While most Christians, like me, have no problem with honoring our Lord's birth this time of year, there are a growing number of Believers who recognize that Christmas, as we know it, evolved out of the Roman tradition of Saturnalia, a festival honoring their god of agriculture, Saturn, on the winter solstice.    
     The date of Saturnalia, -- December 25th -- was celebrated as "the birthday of the unconquered sun" and was also a convenient way for Emperor Constantine to combine his pagan Sun god worship  with his newly self-professed Christian faith.  It was also a way for him to exclude the influence of the believing Jews from the new Christian faith, by declaring the day as a Christ Mass. Though we now celebrate Christmas as the birth of Jesus Christ, we don’t know the exact date, or even the year of his birth. (Many scholars believe that it was in late September or early October, and associate it with the Feast of Tabernacles). And during Saturnalia, children would often be given gifts of wax dolls – an act with a rather macabre history itself; the dolls were used to represent human sacrifices that Rome had given to Saturn in the past as payment for good harvests. Boughs of certain trees and other plant matter were also common gifts during Saturnalia, and were used to represent bounty and good harvests. So, while I like the idea that gift-giving at Christmas time is associated with the gifts of myrrh, frankincense, and gold that were presented to the Christ child by the three Magi, the reality is that the pagan beliefs were the original impetus for gifts.
     Legend has it that stocking stuffing is rooted in the charitable donations of Saint Nicholas, the forerunner to our Santa Claus.  Nicholas believed that childhood should be savored and enjoyed – but in a time where boys and girls younger than 10 had to work to support their families, this wasn’t always possible. So he decided to ease their burden, and gave what he could in homemade food, clothes, and furniture. The bishop even gave out oranges, which would have been very rare and expensive in Lycia, where he lived. The problem became where to leave these gifts so that the children would find them. According to legends, he then saw girls’ stockings hanging above a fireplace, and ol’ Saint Nick (to paraphrase) thought “Why not?”.  From then on, children would hang stockings up hoping that Saint Nicholas would visit them that night.
     But there is another legend that pre-dates the good bishop.  The practice can be traced back to Scandinavian countries that still held their Pagan beliefs. Children would leave their shoes full of carrots, straw, or other similar foods for Odin’s mythic horse, Sleipnir. When Sleipnir ate the food, Odin would leave candy or other treats in their place.
      Then there is the issue of wreaths and Christmas trees. Although many Christians might say these items are separate from belief in Christ, God still has something to say about our festivals.  Jeremiah 10:3-4 says, For the customs of the peoples are worthless; they cut a tree out of the forest, and a craftsman shapes it with his chisel. They adorn it with silver and gold...  In fact, Christmas was not among the earliest festivals of the Church.  Early Church fathers, Irenaeus and Tertullian, omit it from their lists of feasts, with Tertullian writing, “The pagan Romans clad their door posts with green and branching laurels.  In the Saturnalia, presents come and go. There are gifts and banquets … yet Christians should have no acquaintance with the festivals of the pagans.”  And then there is God, Himself, who says in Amos, Chapter 5, I hate, I despise your feast days...
      And we can't ignore that the evergreen was also known to have represented the same values to a variety of cultures, including the Egyptians, Chinese, and Hebrews. The worship of trees was also very common in European druidism and paganism. In Christian tradition, trees were often put up in December to serve the dual purpose of warding off the devil and allowing a perch for whatever birds still remained. Evergreen trees decorated with apples and wafers were also used in Christmas Eve plays during the Middle Ages to represent the tree from which Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit. Now, I know that no one will admit that we are worshiping our Christmas trees, here in the 21st Century.  But, if we were honest with ourselves, they have become idols.  True, we do not bow down physically before the Christmas tree, but when you consider that they have become a matter of the heart, and how much emphasis we put on them as a symbol of the time we say we are worshiping Jesus... well, sounds like idolatry to me.
     Then there is the tradition of mistletoe, which has an interesting story.  The Greeks believed that Aeneas, the famous ancestor of the Romans, carried a sprig of mistletoe in the form of the legendary golden bough. In Eddic tradition, mistletoe was the only thing able to kill the god Baldur, since it had not sworn an oath to leave him alone. Among other pre-Christian cultures, mistletoe was believed to carry the male essence, and by extension, romance, fertility, and vitality. The history of its popularity as a kissing agent is unknown.
     These are just some of our most endearing Christmas traditions, and I know that there are many of my fellow Christians who do not feel the same as I do about the holiday.  They will tell me, "Fine, I recognize that some of the origins of our modern Christmas celebration come from pagan rituals. But that's not what it means to me, and God knows my heart.  He knows that Jesus is the reason I celebrate Christmas". While I respect their decision, it's not that easy for me.  Because the worship of false gods and idolatry were intertwined with these rituals and festivals, my spirit has a tough time sharing a celebration of my Savior's birth with any other idol or deity.
     The final factor for me is not what the celebration of the Christmas holiday means to me, but what does it mean to my Father in Heaven?  And I want to interject this thought ... Although there is no instruction in the Bible to celebrate the birth of Christ, I don't think He condemns us for wanting to honor our Lord and Savior. But, I don't think it pleases Him that we can so easily dismiss the connections between the Christmas holiday and its pagan roots.
     How is it any different than the justification the Israelites gave for worshiping the Golden Calf? Read Exodus 32:1-6, and see if there isn't a valid comparison.  Didn't the Israelites set something up for their pleasure, and declared that it was from God? Weren't they worshiping a representation of a pagan deity, and had the arrogance to say “it shall be a feast to the LORD”?  Didn't they celebrate, claiming they were thinking about God as they brought gifts, drank and made merry? Personally, this is what I think we do with the holiday of Christmas.  And I understand how difficult it is to separate our hearts (our flesh) from what pleases God.
     Nobody enjoyed the emotions and sentimentality of the Christmas season more than me! And if I say, BUT GOD KNOWS MY HEART and my heart is focused on Jesus... aren't we then making it about US, and what we want, NOT what God has asked us to do?  Are we offending Him by celebrating our own man-made feast, rather than His appointed Feasts, and then saying it's about Him?
     I know this is a tough subject, and I do not wish it to cause division in the Body of Christ.  It is a decision that must be made by each individual -- how you choose to honor the birth of Christ is something you need to be certain about in your spirit.  But you should be honest and uncompromising; don't let the Enemy convince you with sentimental memories and nostalgia. Don't let him combine man's pagan rituals with the holiness of the Christ child, and persuade you they are one and the same.  And one secular website even proposed this idea: "Christmas is the one time of year where everyone (or nearly so) is friendly, generous and gets along with each other, [so] does it matter the inspiration?"  (To read an article from this perspective, click here). In other words, why doesn't all mankind just ignore whether the inspiration for Christmas comes from the birth of the Christ child or from an assortment of rituals honoring a variety of false and pagan gods, and just all enjoy the merriment and good cheer?  That might be fine for the non-believer or agnostic, but if you are a Christian you must ask yourself this question ... Would God agree?  

Matthew 15:8-9    This people honors Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me; in vain do they worship Me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.    

December 2, 2019

Good Question Regarding Power of the Believer!

     One of the benefits of doing Inner Healing is when you encounter someone who recognizes not only the importance of this ministry, but also gets excited about seeking more of the Biblical links. I love it when it leads to inquiring questions. Such was the case recently, when a new friend emailed me the following query ... "Is there something more powerful about the laying on of hands and the anointing of oil versus just praying healing for someone?" I loved this question because it made me really think about my own theology and what the Bible has to say on this subject. Here was my answer...

     This is how I understand the Bible to address this debate: In the Old Testament the laying on of hands was to confer authority upon someone, such as Moses laying hands on Joshua to commission him to lead Israel. In Numbers 27:15-23 we see that Moses asks the Lord to appoint a man to lead the congregation of Israel. The Lord tells Moses to take Joshua (in whom the Lord has placed the Holy Spirit), and stand him before Eleazar the priest. Moses is then to invest Joshua with some of his authority [from the Lord] and commission him to lead. This conferring of authority by the laying on of hands is further confirmed in Deuteronomy 34:9, which reads "And Joshua the son of Nun was full of the spirit of wisdom, for Moses had laid his hands on him. So the people of Israel obeyed him and did as the Lord had commanded Moses."
    In the New Testament Jesus (who has conferred His power and authority to us to cast out demons and heal the sick (Luke 9:1) then commissions us to lay hands on the sick and heal them (Mark 16:18). Scripturally, it looks like this: "Jesus summoned together his twelve apostles and imparted to them authority over every demon and the power to heal every disease... They will be supernaturally protected from snakes and from drinking anything poisonous. And they will lay hands on the sick and heal them.” NOTE: Some scholars believe that this sentence contains two Aramaic idioms. To pick up snakes could be a picture of overcoming one’s enemies (“snakes”), and drinking poison may be speaking of dealing with attacks on one’s character (poisonous words). The imagery is from Psalm 91:13.
     Regarding the anointing with oil, in the Old Testament, it was always about consecrating and setting apart to God, (becoming holy) — first the priests and the Tabernacle where God dwelt, as written in Exodus 30, verses 25-32. The Lord instructs Moses to make a sacred anointing oil of a blend of spices, and to anoint the tent [where God met with them], the ark of the covenant, and all the implements of the temporary tabernacle. In essence, everything that the oil touched would be consecrated unto the Lord, becoming holy. God told Moses, "This shall be my holy anointing oil throughout your generations. It shall not be poured on the body of an ordinary person." In this passage it is poured on Aaron and his sons, as priests. But in 1 Samuel 10:1, Scripture tells us that Samuel, the priest pours it on Saul, the first king of Israel: "Then Samuel took the flask of oil and poured it on Saul’s head, kissed him, and said, 'Has the Lord not anointed you as ruler over His inheritance (Israel)?' "
     The Lord's truths of the anointing oil all come together in the New Testament, where NOW the anointing of oil sets US apart [made holy as believers in Christ] as both priests and kings as Revelation 1:6 notes: "Jesus is the prince of kings of the earth, and He has made us kings and priests to God, His Father." Furthermore, our bodies are now the tabernacle where God dwells! In fact, I would charge you to read 1 Corinthians 3:16, which says, "Do you not know that you are God's temple and that God's Spirit dwells in you?" No mistaking that truth, is there?  
     So, when I get a question like the one my friend asked me, it’s about “connecting the dots “ to build the big picture of who we are in Christ.  It glorifies God more when we, as citizens of the Kingdom of God on Earth (Philippians 3:20-21) use our power and authority to anoint with oil as kings and priests, and when we lay hands on the sick and heal them. This displays more of our appointed power than if we just pray for healing, which is asking God to do it. Jesus commissioned us to carry on His work and He wants us to step into our identity! And it glorifies the Lord [and pleases Him!] when we step into that role instead of asking God to do it for us. 
     Let me be clear, I am not saying it is wrong to pray to God for healing. But my prayers usually consist of asking for more of His power in me to deliver a person from physical or spiritual disease as I anoint them with oil and/or lay hands on them. That is the Biblical model that I clearly see in both the Old and New Testaments. And it has changed my whole understanding about divine healing and the role I play in it. Thank you, Holy Spirit, for revealing the Father's heart!

Mark 6:13   And they cast out many demons and anointed with oil many who were sick and healed them. 

Mark 8:25   Then Jesus laid His hands on his eyes again; and he opened his eyes, his sight was restored, and he saw everything clearly.  


November 29, 2019

Psalm 95:2-3

Let us come before His presence with a song of thanksgiving;
Let us shout joyfully to Him with songs.
For the LORD is a great God
And a great King above all gods

     I am definitely experiencing this Thanksgiving season with unrivaled joy and praise for my Lord! Mark and I just returned from a four-day retreat in which we worked with others to minister to 37 military veterans and I got to see 24 of them have an encounter with the Risen Christ! Nothing can surpass that spiritual high of seeing so much pain from the devil being washed away by the Living Presence of Jesus! And I am praying that this experience only multiplies in the Thanksgivings to come.
     Although not everyone has the opportunity [or the desire] to do this Kingdom work, we should all be wary of shortchanging our God with our gratitude. We all need to remember that the Apostle Paul tells us in 1 Thessalonians 5:18, "In everything give thanks, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus."  It is easy to give thanks for those things that come easily -- our family, friends, our health, our job, God's provision.  But notice that Paul said everything!  
     So, what exactly does that mean? Are we supposed to give thanks for the minor stuff like our aches and pains, the difficult people in our lives, the mounting bills on our desk?  And, Paul couldn't possibly mean that we're supposed to give thanks for the sinful world we see all around us -- the immoral culture, the apostate Church, and the escalating evil that abounds in the world, can he?
     Instead of focusing on all the pain and sadness and anxiety that all those things -- both great and small -- bring to our mind and hearts, wouldn't it be nice this Thanksgiving to actually put into practice the words of Psalm 95?  To come before His presence with shouts of joy and songs, in full spiritual recognition that no matter what is going on in our lives or in the world, He is a great God and a great King above all gods?
     You see, I think we Christians tend to give thanks for all the things that we can see or have taken notice of.  But when we thank Him for EVERYTHING, we begin to see Him for Who He is and all that He has done.  So what does that really look like?  
     Have you ever thought about thanking Him for all the times He said, "No", and for unanswered prayer because it not only made you depend on Him more, but humbled you to admit that He knew what was best for you?  What about thanking Him for the things He withheld from you, and for protecting you from things you may never realize ... and the closed doors that may have frustrated you, when, in fact He mercifully kept you from going places He did not want you to go.  
     As we celebrate our traditional holidays this year, will we see it as more than just family, friends, and food?  Will we take advantage of these days that are designed to give thanks and which are dedicated to our great God -- to the LORD who has given us an inheritance in the heavenly places, which is something greater than all the possessions of this world?  Will we thank God for the greatest gift He could ever give us: forgiveness through His perfect Son's death on the cross on our behalf? 
     And then will we take the next step and give Him thanks that He has provided a way for us to release all the lonely times, the tears, the uncertainties, the failures and personal losses ... all our pain? In fact, will we recognize that He not only died on that Cross to forgive our sins and give us eternal life, but that He went to the Cross to set us free and He wants what He died for! He wants you to surrender all your pain and He wants you to live the rest of your life Wonderfully and Completely free!
     This holiday season, it needs to be all about HIM and HIS KINGDOM! I've spent too many Thanksgivings and Christmases focused on what He's done for me, and that is certainly valid and His due. But now, I want to demonstrate my thankfulness by concentrating on what I can do for Him. My salvation is accomplished; my eternal life is secure; but now I want to dedicate however many days are left to me on this earth to fulfilling His purpose for my life in glorifying Him and His Kingdom. 
     I want everyone to know what a GREAT GOD and a GREAT KING He is! I want everyone to understand their true identity as His Kingdom representatives on earth, and to know their Kingdom assignments in this life. We are not meant to just glide through this life until the day we are called Home. We are seated in Heaven with our Lord and Master and we have the same access to His counsel as He did when He walked this earth and heard from our Father in Heaven. 
     My prayer for each of you this Thanksgiving is that you will truly understand and experience that you can come into His presence; that you can experience such spiritual joy that you want to shout of His greatness and goodness in your life, and how the world can serve His Majesty, the King of Heaven ... in all circumstances and in all ways.
     Finally, I want to leave you with a couple of additional Scriptures that I think will inspire you.  The first comes from the Old Testament, but joins with the verses from Psalm 95 to give us special inspiration for the times in which we live.  It is Isaiah 12:4 ... In that day you will say: "Give thanks to the LORD, call on His name; make known among the nations what He has done, and proclaim that His name is exalted."  The second comes from our Lord Himself, in Matthew 24:14 ... Yet through it all, this joyful assurance of the realm of heaven’s kingdom will be proclaimed all over the world, providing every nation with a demonstration of the reality of God. And after this the end of this age will arrive.  
     Let us fulfill our purpose this holiday season -- and every day for the rest of our lives -- to make the Kingdom of Heaven on earth known throughout the world; to participate with Jesus in giving everyone a demonstration of His very real presence in their lives; and to plant Kingdom seeds that the Holy Spirit can water and grow. 
     So, I pray that you and your families had a most Blessed Thanksgiving; a day filled with gratitude for all that our Great God and King have done, are doing, and will do in our lives. And I urge you to move from gratitude to being a spiritual force in the world for the Kingdom. If you truly want to thank Jesus, serve the Kingdom and your King! 

November 26, 2019

The Lies And The Truth

"When the Spirit of the Lord comes upon my heart, I will dance like David danced"
      I want you to contemplate the following post that appeared on Steve Harmon's Facebook page. It's really hard to describe exactly who Steve is -- he's a deliverance minister, a warrior for God, and an ambassador for the Kingdom ... and he just makes a lot of sense when he writes about the tactics of the Enemy to destroy our relationship with God. His latest Facebook post struck such a compelling chord with my spirit that I had to share.
     He writes, "The Demonic know that they can't separate you from the Love of God. So, because of that, they have to do things to convince you that God doesn't love you or care [about you]. So they work to cut off your communication with Him. They work to stop your prayers from happening. They work to dictate the circumstances in your life so that you believe that God is ignoring you, or has left you. The whole purpose of this is so YOU will let go of God and turn away from Him in your life. Since they can't get God to turn away and let go of you, they have to get you [to let go of God.]
     When one turns away and lets go of God, it doesn't mean God has stopped loving them. It just means that their connection with God is now cut off because they shut the door of their heart. So their life starts to feel hard, difficult, hopeless, and dry because they sever ties with the Life Source. And all because they believe the Life Source left them -- which never happened.
     This is how the game is played. You can't ever let your circumstances dictate how you believe who God is, and what He is like. Jesus always stands at the door and knocks. Open the door again. He will NEVER leave you nor forsake you, no what it feels or looks like."
     And here is the last sentence I would add to that post ... So we have to stop listening to the lies of the Enemy. I will further tell you that what he wrote perfectly describes the tactics of Satan in every single Inner Healing session we do. As Paul wrote in Romans 8, there is nothing in all creation that can separate us from the love of God. And as Steve Harmon wrote, it is never a question of God letting go of us, but of us letting go of God. The Enemy will take the difficult circumstances of our lives and try to convince us that God was never there; that He abandoned us in that moment [or sometimes years]. He will try to convince us that all the promises in the Bible are a lie, when in fact it is he who is lying.
     Those promises include the truth that He will fight for you (Exodus 14:14); that He will strengthen the weary and increase the power of the weak (Isaiah 40239); that no weapon formed against you will prevail (Isaiah 54:17); that He has plans to prosper you and not harm you; plans to give you hope and a future (Jeremiah 29:11); that He will be with you wherever you go (Joshua 1:9).  So when the hard times come -- and they will -- either from our own rebellious sins, or the times someone else's sins caused us pain, we must not allow the Enemy to convince us to cut off our communication with God. We must not turn away from Him nor let go of His hand.
     There is no amount of addiction, adultery, molestation or sexual sin that will cause Him to stop loving you. He will always be knocking at the door of your heart, waiting for you to open it to Him. And even if your childhood was filled with physical or emotional pain, He never abandoned you! I have experienced indescribable joy -- and many tears -- when [during an Inner Healing session] the Lord shows a person exactly where He was when the pain was being inflicted, and they see His face as He delivers them from that painful memory. And then Jesus walks them out of that situation and shows the Beloved that His blood now covers that memory and it is sealed from causing anymore pain. The lies of the Enemy have now been blown to pieces and the person knows in their body, soul, and spirit who God, the Father, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit are, and what they are like.
     I had the amazing privilege this past weekend to witness the encounters that 24 military veterans and first responders had with the Risen Christ. It was indescribable! Jesus paid the price for their pain and they were willing to be vulnerable enough to give Him what He died for. It was one of the most beautiful weekends of my life. My spirit is still soaring high! These men are no longer prisoners to the lies of the Enemy!
     And that brings me to my last witness that I want to share. A most cherished friend and Sister in Christ has a Prison Ministry and I want to share her testimony about her experience this past Sunday ... There were 116 men at Sunday services at the prison where she ministers. The Spirit of God broke out as the worshipers led the men to stand and sing Alleluia to the Lord. She then led them through a time of forgiveness where they could see Jesus with them [during the episodes of their life]. She led a man who lives in the segregation unit of the prison to the Lord, presented him with a Bible and he will be baptized next week!
     Then during the song "Dance like David danced", the Lord said to tell the men that if they used to dance in the clubs [when they were on the outside], it was okay for them to dance here in the prison church. Men began filling the aisles and dancing; men with tattoos covering their heads; tall men, short men, Hispanic, White, and Black men. They formed a circle and men went into the middle and danced [with sheer joy and abandon] -- just like David! The officer on watch said they felt the presence of God inside those prison walls.
     So, you see, there are all kinds of prisons, both physical and spiritual. But Jesus can enter into both and bring freedom with Him. And Steve Harmon is right -- we can never get God to turn away from us or leave us alone. Never! We simply must leave the door to our hearts open to the Life Source of the Universe. Grab on to Him and never let go!

Romans 8:37-39     No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

November 23, 2019

"The Veils" Of Our Existence

     Since I began this blog, I have periodically run this post that I originally wrote in 2012, shortly after I launched this site. The post was based on a theory proposed by the late Don Harkin, former Editor of The Idaho Observer.  Mr. Harkin suggested the existence of a world system of Power-Elites that the masses don't comprehend because these Power-Elites have cleverly developed a virtual pasture so green that few people seldom, if ever, bother to look up from where they are grazing to notice that they are being led over the cliff. It was Mr. Harkin's conjecture that there were at least 8 veils of understanding that a person needed to penetrate in order to see the real purpose of our existence.
     From that first posting in 2012 to the second posting in 2016, my understanding that each level of these "veils" included spiritual battles had increased exponentially, and I added a "new perspective" to my original perception. I still think each of these stages exists and is valid, and in order to progress to a higher understanding of just how we are to maneuver through this existence called life, we must be able to pierce each successive veil and move to the next level.  It is part of our human journey on this earth... only now, I see this journey with the added benefit of spiritual eyes. So, now that we are approaching 2020, it's time to revisit this interesting speculation, and see if we grasp any new revelations that we can add to Mr. Harkins' original conjecture.  If this is not the first time you've read this post on my blog, I'm also interested to know how many of you have grown in your understanding, as well.
     The First Veil (2012) = Politics. There are over 7 billion+ people on the planet.  Most of them will live and die without seriously thinking about anything other than what it takes to live and breathe for one more day.  That means that 90% of all humanity will live behind this first veil and never pierce it.  That leaves 10% of us who will vote, be active in our societies and have an opinion.  Our opinions are often shaped by government officials, the Mainstream Media, or other "experts" who claim to be voices of authority.  But of those with an opinion, 90% will never really think for themselves and will adopt the opinion of others, while 10% will pierce the second veil and move forward in their thinking.
     My 2016 Perspective:  All this remains true, but now I see that there are spiritual forces behind those involved in the government, Mainstream Media, and "experts", or voices of authority.  Of those of us within the 10% who form their own opinion, how many understand that politics is not the answer -- that our power will not come from our affiliation with whomever wins elections, but from Jesus Christ?  And what small percentage of that 10% realizes that our time on this earth should not be spent supporting man-made power structures, but using our power from Christ to "do the things He has done, only greater"? (John 14:12).
     My 2020 Perspective: In the last four years I have grown from an understanding that I have spiritual power and authority transferred from my Savior, Jesus Christ, to a revelation that I am a citizen of Heaven and an Ambassador for the Kingdom of God and His government here on earth. I am to be a member of Christ's Ecclesia (governing body of Christians who implement God's laws/government in our culture and nation). I now understand that our 21st Century model of a Church building full of Christians has not accomplished what Christ intended when He trained and equipped His disciples to go into the world and heal the sick, cast out demons, cleanse the spiritually unclean, raise the dead, and spread the Gospel of the Kingdom.

    The Second Veil (2012) = History.  Once we've pierced the first veil, there will be 10% of us who will explore the world of history, the relationship between man and government, which will then lead to the meaning of self-government through constitutional and common law.  Ninety percent of this group will live and die without going on to pierce the third veil.
     My 2016 Perspective:  T
he Constitution is no longer my route to real freedom.  Man's laws and self-government will only get me so far.  My true freedom lies in letting Jesus heal my spiritual wounds, and recognizing that I don't have to suffer the "fiery darts" of the Enemy.  The history that consumes me now are the experiences of those -- both from the ancient world, and the modern -- who have learned what it means to transcend the tyranny and oppression from the spiritual realm to walk in the footsteps of Jesus.  That is true freedom.
     My 2020 Perspective: The Constitution is being undermined and usurped as Evil begins to come out from behind the veil and boldly reveal itself. Man-made laws that have governed in times past are ignored and I now understand that if we Christians do not stand up and govern as an Ecclesia, then someone else will write our laws. We can see that in the Colorado law that does not require gender specification on a birth certificate. We are in new [and increasingly terrifying] territory when it comes to what history has shown to be traditional forms of law and government. The gloves are coming off.

     The Third Veil (2012) = Resources of the World.  Of the group that pierces this veil, 10% of us will come to realize that the masses are controlled by extremely wealthy and powerful families whose old world assets have been manipulated to become the foundation upon which the world's economy is currently indebted.  (Think Rothschilds, Rockefellers, Vanderbilts, the Royal Monarchs).  But sadly, 90% of this group will never pierce the fourth veil.
     My 2016 Perspective:  Yes, the masses are controlled by these extremely wealthy and powerful families; and behind them are the spiritual forces of wickedness and evil.  I believe that they have sold their souls for earthly wealth and power that will prove false when the Day of Judgment comes.
     My 2020 Perspective: Those that have held this control are feeling threatened as Jesus's Remnant is awakening to the truth of their power and is fighting back spiritually. Therefore, the Wicked are accelerating their evil through sex trafficking, child sacrifice, and sex rituals, as well as reallocating resources of rare earth minerals to their advantage.
     The Fourth Veil (2012) = The Illuminati, Freemasonry and other secret societies.  There are 10% of us that recognize these societies use symbols and perform ceremonies that transfer mysterious knowledge that is used to keep us ordinary people in political, economic and spiritual bondage to the oldest bloodlines on earth.  This has been seen frequently at Super Bowl halftime shows (Beyonce flashing "the Rockefeller" sign; Madonna sporting symbols of the occult) and during the Grammy's (Nikki Minaj's ode to "Roman", the demon whom she says possesses her).  Just check out the Youtube videos for each of these demonstrations!  But once again, 90% of those who have reached this level of understanding will never pierce the fifth veil.
     My 2016 Perspective:  Boy, has my understanding of this grown in the last few years!  The Lord has shown me just how much devastation has been sown on families steeped in these secret societies.  The oaths and curses taken during secret ritual ceremonies have resulted in great oppression among many Christians, who don't even know these secret societies have permeated their families or their Churches!  And the evidence that these societies have infiltrated our entertainment industry is overwhelming.  I am literally seeing the signs and symbols everywhere I look throughout our culture.  Sadly, I believe that our country is steeped in the occult mysticism associated with these groups, and they are influencing every area of our lives.
     My 2020 Perspecrtive:  These last years have seen Mark and I grow in our ministry of Inner Healing and we certainly have seen an increase in the iniquity in family lines that demonstrate the characteristics of demonic oppression. And it is so much more in the open! People are now willing to reveal the torment they are under and are desperate for a solution. So many people are suffering that it is almost becoming mainstream among our society. So, now we are no longer able to ignore the evil permeating our homes and families. What are we going to do about it? Is the Church willing to finally get on board with the knowledge that evil exists, spiritual warfare is real, and we have to fight back?

     The Fifth Veil (2012) = Technological advances by these Secret Societies. I may lose some of you at this point, but I urge you to do your own research and study the Bible in depth.  There are hints of the knowledge behind this fifth veil, but you have to be willing to connect the dots.  There are 10% who make it this far in their understanding who learn that the secret societies are so far advanced technologically that they are able to do things that were considered science fiction just decades ago.  The inventions of Ray Kurzweil and his prediction of "man's singularity with computers" is an example of such advanced technology.  But what's interesting is that this technology is actually ancient, and compares to what Nimrod was trying to accomplish at the Tower of Babel; namely to become like God. Are we getting dangerously close to that concept again?  Nearly 90% will never get beyond this understanding to the sixth veil.
     My 2016 Perspective:  To say that technology has surpassed science fiction is putting it mildly.  Human-animal hybrids are being created in Great Britain, and a surgeon plans to reanimate human corpses.  Books are being written that tell us immortality is accessible to everyone, outside of any religious worldview.  Inventors and artists openly admit that they are "channeling" spiritual sources of knowledge.  All this is being downloaded from entities in the spiritual realm to control and deceive the human race.  We better understand who we're dealing with.
     My 2020 Perspective: It's just more of the same and at a faster pace. Pedophilia and child pornography rings use technology to spread their evil; people are so intrigued with getting their technology "fix" quicker and easier, that we have gone from cell phones to watches and implants can't be far behind. There is still talk of moving our brains to "the Cloud", and Siri and Alexa know everything we say and do. How long until we're dealing with the real-life scenario portrayed in 1984's Terminator movie?

     The Sixth Veil (2012) = Aliens and Monsters may be real.  It is going to take a huge leap for the 10% who get to this level of understanding.  But if you study your Bible closely, you will see mention of fallen angels mating with earthly women to give birth to Nephalim (Giants) (Genesis 6:4 and 2 Samuel 21:20, for example).  There are many modern-day Biblical scholars who are prepared to say that the minotaurs of old and the UFO and alien sightings of today are evidence of these fallen angels.
     My 2016 Perspective:  My, how far we've come in these last three-and-a-half years!  The growth of the remnant of the Church who understands the truth of Genesis 6 has been astounding!  I know that there are "spiritual monsters" and they are called demons.  I have encountered them in deliverance sessions, and seen them stare out of the eyes of people who had no idea they were being oppressed by them.  Savage and brutal and bizarre attacks upon people are increasing and are evidence that the Enemy is bringing the spiritual battle to our physical world.  Although, yes, these demons are real, we should have no fear because He who is in us is greater than he who is in the world.
     My 2020 Perspective: I think perhaps the most surprising new revelation I have received in the last nearly four years is the cooperation between evil men and Satan's demonic forces. TV shows like Stranger Things may appear to be a form of conspiracy entertainment, but it is based on real-life government experiments in the so-called Montauk Project, involving space, time, and opening portals into other dimensions -- which, naturally leads to the question of what is coming through those portals and are Christians awake and prepared to do battle in these spiritual realms?

     The Seventh Veil (2012) = Peace of the Lord.  If you have made it this far and can conceive of the concepts behind the sixth veil, then perhaps you can see that what waits for us behind the seventh.  It's hard to imagine, but I can foresee a small group of people whose soul and spirit is so evolved that they can exist on this earth, yet be unafraid of the evil that abounds in this realm.  The only way I can describe it is to have such peace from God that you are unafraid of death.
     My 2016 Perspective:  Actually, my perspective has moved in a new direction on this veil.  It's not such a small group that sees the evil ascending on the earth from the second heaven, or spiritual realm.  These last few years has seen an amazing growth in this knowledge within the Body of Christ.  It's as if the Holy Spirit has done a massive data dump upon Christians!  We not only know and discern this spiritual warfare, but we also have been given the knowledge that we have the Authority of Jesus to fight [in this war] through the Power of the Holy Spirit.  And that's where our Peace comes from... knowing that we can rebuke the devil and he will flee; knowing that the Lord is our banner in this fight and goes before us; and we know that Jesus will not only never leave us nor forsake us, but He who began a good work in us will complete it.  That is called Peace!
     My 2020 Perspective: This knowledge of supernatural peace has only grown! Once again, I am seeing panic among the general public, and even among some of the "religious" Christians, as they once again sense that the noose is tightening around our comfortable way of life. But those of us who pierced the previous six veils have journeyed for awhile now in the peace that only comes from understanding [and accepting] that evil will increase before Jesus comes back to administer His swift justice. In what might be perceived as an unorthodox mindset, we actually receive the certainty of advancing evil as a sign that our Lord is near to returning. We are ready and both physically and spiritually prepared. We are no longer restive in the midst of the anticipation of evil, but are serene and calm in the certainty of our victory.

     That brings us to Harkin's Eighth veil (2012), which can only be the pure energy, authority and life force that is God.  We can only hope to tap into that Power, and I think the closest we can come to that is to seek a personal, intimate relationship with the One True God, the Ruler of the Universe and abide in Him.
     My 2016 Perspective:  Yes, a personal, intimate relationship is necessary to tap into that Power, but it is incumbent upon each of us to know that it is available to us.  We are not to be mindless robots, sitting idly by waiting for God to win this war all by Himself.  We are created in His image, exhorted to imitate Christ, and called to an inheritance in Christ.  He dwells in us!  That energy, authority and life force are not to be squandered, but used to gain ground in defeating the Enemy in our lives!
     My 2020 Perspective: The knowledge that we are to have a personal, intimate relationship with Christ is now seen through an entirely new lens. He is our King, and we serve Him in His kingdom here on earth. He is our model, and we are to hear and see His directives on managing this earth, just as He followed everything the Father showed and told Him. This picture of citizenship in the Kingdom of God on earth still includes love, compassion, mercy, and grace ... but it has expanded to taking back territory from the kingdom of darkness in people's lives. Mankind was given dominion over the earth at our creation, and it is time we step into that mandate and take up our mantle of authority, using the power of Heaven through the Holy Spirit. who resides in us.

     So, as you can see, with each veil of understanding that is pierced, the number of people "who see" gets exponentially smaller.  When I first wrote this blog post over 7 years ago, I saw mainly through "worldly" eyes.  I was focused on "the low information voter", and the gullible citizens who I saw as useful idiots and tools of the state.  I actually thought my vote really mattered and changing the politics of the nation would solve the world's problems.  I didn't see the spiritual component.
     When I reassessed my understanding three-and-a-half years ago, I can honestly say that I believed I was at that Eighth veil, and I was so grateful to my Lord and the Holy Spirit for helping me to see through the murkiness of the veils and how they obscured my vision of God's Truth.  I saw that my existence here on earth was more than just this physical realm, and my victory in this life depended on my readiness to work with Jesus and the Holy Spirit to do battle with the spiritual realm.  I truly knew that I did not battle against flesh and blood, but had the Authority and Power of Jesus and the Holy Spirit to free myself of spiritual bondage.
    Now, with an additional three-and-a-half years under my belt, I realize that my comprehension of that eighth veil was rudimentary. Yes, it was important to know the true intent of Jesus's Great Commission for us Believers. And, yes, it is not only our privilege, but our responsibility to work with Him and the Holy Spirit to "set the captives free" from their demonic bondage to Satan's lies. But we aren't to stop there. Once we are free, we are to use that energy, authority, and life force that is "God in us" to continue the purpose that Jesus came for -- to re-establish this earth and its inhabitants under the governmental authority of the Kingdom of God.
     Jesus says in Luke 4:43, I must preach the good news of the kingdom of God to the other towns as well; for I was sent for this purpose. And then He says, in Matthew 24:14, And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come. I now clearly see that part of my responsibility as a citizen of the Kingdom of God is to speak into people so that they achieve the entry point into the Kingdom -- which is Salvation. Then I must work with Jesus to get them free from the lies of the Enemy. And then I am to equip and train them to do the same for others, educating them about what it means to be a citizen of Heaven on earth. That is the entire Gospel of the Kingdom! And then the end of Satan's kingdom will come when the Lord returns with His righteous judgment!
    The largest part of "the Church" has stopped at Salvation! Until we can spread the good news of the Kingdom, Christ will not return. And unless you're free from Satan's lies, you cannot comprehend the Kingdom concept and your role as a citizen. Can you see it? First comes Salvation, then Freedom, then your position and responsibility in the Kingdom! 
     I will admit that it's a long road to progress through these veils, and if you are just beginning to awaken to their reality, then I hope you can see that living, breathing and thinking are just the beginning to greater understanding.  And there is nothing to fear... we know that victory is ours in the next life.  Until then, it an honor to stand for our Lord and represent Him as Kingdom citizens to all we come in contact with, and to help others to push through the veils.  As we teach them the meaning of each obstruction, and show them how to move to the next stage, it will be one less obstacle between them and God, and Christ's return.  That is a goal worthy of effort by every Christian.

2 Corinthians 3:16-17   But when one turns to the Lord, the veil is removed.  Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.

November 20, 2019

A Look At The Big Picture: Satan's kingdom vs The Kingdom of God

     Before we dive into this conversation, we need to ask some questions. The first obvious question is this ... did you know that Satan rules all the kingdoms of the world? He says so in Luke 4:5-6 ... Then the devil took him [Jesus] up and revealed to him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. “I will give you the glory of these kingdoms and authority over them,” the devil said, “because they are mine to give to anyone I please."
     But what is Jesus's ultimate response to this? It's in John 12:31. In this verse, the Lord says, From this moment on, everything in this world is about to change, for the ruler of this dark world will be overthrown. What exactly does that look like? When the Son of God came to the earth the first time, He came to re-establish dominion of the earth, bringing all the power and authority of the Kingdom of God with Him. The earth was designed to be governed like God's Kingdom in Heaven and ruled by man's authority [who was made in the image of God and given dominion over the earth]. But Satan usurped that authority in the Garden of Eden, and set up his own kingdom in opposition to the original design. When Jesus was resurrected and ascended into Heaven to sit at the right hand of the Father, He gave all power and authority [to continue the Kingdom of God here on earth] back to man. 
     When He returns at His Second Coming, the Lord will render His final judgment of the world systems which will result in the irrefutable overthrow of Satan's kingdom of darkness. When Jesus announces that everything is about to change, He is foretelling the impact that the Cross will have on this world. Satan's primary weapon to control man -- the reality and fear of death -- was defeated by Christ's sacrifice on the Cross, which delivers mankind into the eternal Kingdom of God.
     The good news is that Satan will not always dominate and rule the earth and its inhabitants. The bad news is that Jesus has yet to return, so the devil still reigns over his kingdom. Yes, if you believe in Jesus Christ as your Savior, you will one day reside in Heaven with Him. But what about the rest of your life while still on earth; or the lives of an unknown number of generations until He does return? The truth is that we are in the midst of a transition from Satan's domination and supremacy over the earth to the future reality of Jesus Christ's sovereign rule. And this transition will be neither easy nor painless. In fact, the closer we get to Christ's return, the more difficult our existence will become because Satan knows his time is short. 
      The prophet Daniel calls those last days "a time of distress", and Jesus, Himself, says, For this will be a time of great misery beyond the magnitude of anything the world has ever seen or ever will see. Unless God limited those days, no one would escape. But because of His love for those chosen to be His, He will shorten that time of trouble.
     This we know: Satan is not going to go easily or willingly. The Bible gives us many warnings that his fury will be focused on the followers of Christ, God's chosen people of Israel, all of humanity to keep them from turning to Christ, and to the returning Jesus, Himself. He will instigate religious persecution, and as hard as it is to fathom, a lot of it will come from "the Church" itself. Sadly, there is a vast number of the Church who are Christian, in self-proclaimed name only, and will easily fall prey to religious deception and false teachings. 
     That may be hard for you to digest, but it is the truth of the Bible. And it is becoming increasingly clear to me how few "Christians" actually read their Bible, let alone take the time to study and understand it. In this day of technology, it is far too easy to listen to a podcast or read an article that declares it is the purveyor of God's Truth. But how many people take that information and measure it against Scripture? For that matter, how many people sitting in churches, whether small or large, simply accept the teachings of those who hold authority over them? 
     As true believers in Christ, we must love the Truth, and our beliefs must be firmly rooted in the Word of God. It is also incumbent upon us to have the strength of character to defend our beliefs, or we, too, could fall prey to satanic deception and false teachings. 
     I do not write this to give you pause, or to cause you to shrink back in fear and anticipation of anxiety, sorrow, or pain. On the contrary, I write this to activate your spirit to get in the fight! The Lord promises that we can look forward to the end of Satan's rule on earth. There will be a new age in which Satan and his demons will be isolated from humanity for 1,000 years and the earth will be under the sovereign rule of our Lord and Savior. The battle for humanity that has raged for thousands of years will be over and we will stand victorious with our King! 
     Yes, Satan will use a human ruler who will "make war with the saints", and there will be a false religious system that will lead many astray. But if you know the truth of all this in the Word, then you can also know the truth of the promise that Christ's kingdom will never end. In the end, it really is a battle between two kingdoms -- Satan's kingdom on earth, and God's Kingdom in Heaven. It is important that we be prepared for what's coming and know how to recognize God's Truth. Your eternal life depends on it!

Daniel 7:27    Then the sovereignty, power, and greatness of all the kingdoms under heaven will be given to the holy people of the Most High. His kingdom will last forever, and all rulers will serve and obey Him. 

November 17, 2019

A Historical and Biblical Argument In Favor of Women

Once more, it seems as if Beth Moore has found herself the target of religious men. This time it is Reformed Baptist pastor John MacArthur who has her square in his sights. Although MacArthur lists his church as non-denominational, his doctrine of salvation is clearly founded upon Calvinist theology. [It has been my experience in a church I attended for 20 years that many Baptist churches move to a "non-denominational" designation to appeal to a wider audience]. But let me be clear, this post is not about my views on any particular belief system, but about the good Pastor's recent statements regarding the place of women [such as Beth Moore] in the the leadership of "the Church".
     During a panel discussion among male preachers, MacArthur was asked his opinion about including Beth Moore as part of the Church's circle of leadership. He responded that he would tell her to "Go Home", and then followed that comment with, “There is no case that can be made biblically for a woman preacher. Period. Paragraph. End of discussion.” According to The Christian Post, MacArthur argued that 1 Corinthians 14:34, which reads: “Women should remain silent in the churches,” shouldn’t be “hard to understand.” “You don’t say anything,” he stressed, later adding: “Women need to get themselves under control and realize they are not to speak in a church.” But MacArthur wasn't through. He went on to say, “When women take over a culture, men become weak; when men become weak, they can be conquered. When all the men have been slaughtered, you [women] can sit there with all your jewelry and junk. You’ve been conquered, because you overpowered your protectors.”
     Okay, Pastor, I think I have presented your argument fairly. Now, let me bring another point of view to this little controversy you've stirred up. In fact, I am borrowing from a post that I originally wrote over four years ago. I still stand by it. So, let me first share another Scripture that is often used to substantiate Pastor MacArthur's position: A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet (1 Timothy 2:11-12). By the way, although both verses in 1 Corinthians and 1 Timothy refer to women remaining silent, the latter verse is the only I could find in the Bible that refers specifically to women's authority in the Church. So, without a confirming witness, I decided to take a deeper look at this conflict and see within what context the Apostle Paul made this statement.
     As always, I find that our English translations of the Bible leave something to be desired when comparing them to the original Hebrew and Greek manuscripts.  Such is the case with the central word in the argument against women leading men in instruction ... it's the word, authority.  It seems that a study of Paul’s letters shows that he regularly used a form of the Greek word “exousia” when referring to the use of authority in the church.  But in this particular verse, Paul used the word "authentein".  This unusual Greek verb is found only once in scripture and rarely in extrabiblical texts, where it is usually associated with aggression.  Authentein is translated as “domineer” in the Latin Vulgate and New English Bible and as “usurp authority” in the Geneva and King James Bibles.
     So if Paul used the word exousia when talking about the use of authority in the church in 1st and 2nd Corinthians, Colossians, 2nd Thessalonians, and Romans; why would he choose to use authentein to refer to the same thing in 1 Timothy?  Could he have been referring to something else?
      This is where the context of this passage is so important!  In the case of 1 Timothy, Paul was writing a personal letter instructing Timothy about how to deal with heresy being spread by false teachers in Ephesus. This is spelled out at the beginning of the letter: "As I urged you when I went into Macedonia, stay there in Ephesus so that you may command certain people not to teach false doctrines any longer or to devote themselves to myths and endless genealogies…".
     On the surface, there are a few things to consider when correlating this warning with the suggestion that Paul meant women had no authority in the church.  1)  Could it be that most of the teachers of false doctrine in Ephesus were men, and that women might have had little training in theology; making them subject to repeating these false doctrines?  It would seem to me that Paul might have been warning the Ephesians that any interest in these false doctrines by women might become dangerous to the Church.  If that is the case, then this warning in 1 Timothy is specific to that church in Ephesus, at that time -- not meant to be a permanent restriction on all women for all time.
     2)  Keeping the context of this letter and these verses in view, remember that Paul was writing to the Church in Ephesus; a city known for its worship of goddesses, as well as heretical Gnostic teachings.  Some of the Gnostic texts of the time sometimes described Eve as Adam’s teacher. She is also depicted as superior to Adam, as preceding him, and as giving life to him in some way (part of the goddess obsession).  His admonition that women should not assume authority over a man might have been in answer to these Gnostic teachings.  (The Gnostic teachings on Eve could be what Paul is referring to in 1 Timothy 2:13-14 when he pointedly explains that Adam is the superior one, not Eve.  Reading these verses out of context to what was going on in Ephesus gives a completely different meaning).
     3)  Then there is the contradiction between other examples of Paul's writings where he provides instructions for women praying and prophesying in church (1 Corinthians).  When Paul mentions the spiritual gifts, he does not state that women are restricted from receiving any of the leadership gifts.  And it is interesting to note that he takes special care to record commendations to a number of women serving in leadership positions (Romans 16).  Can we agree that Paul is generally supportive of women’s participation, which contradicts the idea that women must be silent? 
     But I keep coming back to that word authentein.  The mystery of why Paul used that particular word instead of his more common use of exousia drove me to dig deeper.  Why did he include this passage about women and authority in a letter that began by warning against false doctrines and myths?  As expected, the uncertainty of 1 Timothy 2:11-12, has resulted in much historical study of the times.
The goddess Cybele and her consort, Attis
     It seems that in Timothy’s time and locale, the goddess Cybele (called Artemis by the Greeks) was worshipped through violent rituals against men that symbolized the murder/suicide of a false god named Attis.  In his letter to Timothy, Paul repeatedly warns against false doctrines, mythology and extreme forms of self-denial (1 Timothy 1:3-7, 4:1-5, 6:20-21), even referring to the false teaching and related practices as “demonic”.  The violent act symbolizing the death of Attis was indeed an extreme form of self-denial.  Male priests of Cybele and Attis renounced all sexual feeling, irrevocably, through ritual castration.
     When the 5th Century Christian theologian Jerome translated 1 Timothy for the Latin translation of the Bible, he forever changed the meaning of our contested verses.  Let me explain.  He translated the key verb authentein as "to exercise authority", and rendered it more in terms of “having dominion over” or “dominating” a man.  Prior to Jerome's translation, the word more commonly referred to the instigation or commission of an act of violence, suicide or murder.  In the Greek Septuagint, for example, a noun form of the word (authentas) refers to those who engaged in ritual violence in the worship of a false god.
      Are you starting to see the connection between Paul's initial warning against false doctrines and false gods or myths, and the more accurate interpretation of giving his prohibition against women teaching or instigating ritual violence against men?  It's all in the context of what was going on in Ephesus!  The nature of Paul’s concerns, the most common meanings of the verb “authentein,” and the religious and cultural context in which these verses were written are all lost in Jerome’s Latin translation of 1 Timothy 2:12-15.  Subsequent translations into German and English followed Jerome's misleading example.  Concerns about women becoming involved in false teaching and violent rituals were replaced with warnings against leadership and teaching roles for women in the Church.  It seems very possible that Paul's true counsel was lost in translation!
     I recognize that this new understanding I have projected is only a theory; and I also discern that it will likely not change the 1600 years of bias against women as having a place in the Church's ministry as teachers ... or in the case of John MacArthur .. as preachers. Believe me, I am no feminist looking to usurp the leadership of men -- I am simply trying to put forth the argument that the Lord has bestowed the spiritual gifts of teaching and prophesying and wisdom upon women as well as men.  Why would any man deny himself the benefit of learning from a woman whom the Lord had blessed?  Certainly, Priscilla played a major role in furthering Apollo's education on the full gospel of Jesus (Acts 18).  And then there is Phoebe, whom Paul commends in Romans 16 as a "servant of the church". I find it interesting that the word servant is translated from the Greek word, diakonos, from which our English word deacon comes from. At the very least, it does seem that Paul intends us to understand Phoebe as in some sense an official representative of the church at Cenchreae.
     And again, it's ironic that in a time when women could not be legal witnesses, Jesus Christ chose women as the first witnesses of His resurrection. So, Pastor MacArthur, I believe that women can still be witnesses of His glory today, to all who will listen. I pray that you receive divine revelation on this matter.
It seems that in Timothy’s time and locale, the goddess Cybele (called Artemis by the Greeks) was worshipped through violent rituals against men that symbolized the murder/suicide of a false god named Attis.  In his letter to Timothy, Paul repeatedly warns against false doctrines, mythology and extreme forms of self-denial (1 Timothy 1:3-7, 4:1-5, 6:20-21), even referring to the false teaching and related practices as “demonic”.  The violent act symbolizing the death of Attis was indeed an extreme form of self-denial.  Male priests of Cybele and Attis renounced all sexual feeling, irrevocably, through ritual castration.

For a more comprehensive look at the ancient Gnostic teachings, false doctrines, and translation errors that contributed to our confused understanding of 1 Timothy 2, please click here.  My thanks to Bob Edwards for his outstanding research and commentary.

Acts 2:17-18    And it shall come to pass in the last days, God declares, that I will pour out of My Spirit upon all mankind, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy [telling forth the divine counsels] and your young men shall see visions (divinely granted appearances), and your old men shall dream [divinely suggested] dreams. Yes, and on My menservants also, and on My maidservants, in those days I will pour out of My Spirit, and they shall prophesy [telling forth the divine counsels and predicting future events pertaining especially to God’s kingdom].