“Why is everything collapsing around us?”
“Is this the time?”
“Am I prepared for Jesus to call me home?”
These are the points as I see them.
- In the West particularly, but also in the hitherto, emerging economies such as China and India and other nation States throughout Asia, life had, in terms of our chances of survival, appeared to be getting much better.
- The middle class had probably never been better off. They were aspirational, some becoming extremely wealthy.
- They were, because of rising prosperity, upwardly mobile.
- Even the poor in many of the larger economies had access to an adequate supply of food, better housing and access to medical services. For them, the future appeared much brighter.
- Science/technology/medicine/engineering had made huge progress. Virtually, each day appeared to validate some new breakthrough.
- The world has been told that, irrespective of Climate Change and the phenomena of ‘natural’ disaster, mankind would overcome all obstacles and terrors.
- And under the coming World Government, things would get better and better.
NB: As I was proofing this commentary today, I caught a News Flash that the U.N. were advocating a ‘temporary’ handing over of all national governments so the world could effectively fight the Covid-19 virus. This evil cadre of some of the worst socialists, terrorists and despotic hirelings are so determined to take over our nations.
Do you see what is absent in these seven points?
Surely, they are personified by the complete absence of God.
There is no aspirational seeking of Him. So entrenched is denial that there is little or no understanding that none of these temporal gains are important.
In the eye of God, they are worthless. That which we treasure the most is valueless currency in the heavenlies.
Take Up Your Cross
Mathew 16:25-27 “For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it. What will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul? For the Son of Man will come in His Father’s glory with His angels, and then He will repay each one according to what he has done.”
Ecclesiastes 5:10-12: covetousness
“The one who loves money will never be satisfied with money, he who loves wealth will never be satisfied with his income. This also is futile. When someone’s prosperity increases, those who consume it also increase; so what does its owner gain, except that he gets to see it with his eyes? The sleep of the laborer is pleasant—whether he eats little or much—but the wealth of the rich will not allow him to sleep.
All around the world, ‘natural’ disaster has been striking the world with what Bible-based Christians have seen as ‘great hammer blows.’
Quite naturally, they wonder and ask each other, “Should we accept that these are the beginnings of the warnings of which Jesus and the Prophets spoke?”
They appear to be increasing and threaten to destroy all the gains that this World (in its fallen state) has placed such a high premium on.
There are, of course, the economic exceptions.
In some smaller, third-world countries, religious and political wars continue unabated and tear such nations apart. People are slain almost randomly or simply starve to death. This is particularly demonstrable in the persecution and slaughter of Christian minorities wherever they may be found. Genocide is a fact of life for many peoples.
Bible-based Christianity (as opposed to ‘Churchianity’) has, alternatively, arrived at a number of conclusions. Chief amongst them is our belief that, very soon, the removal of those given Jesus will take place. This, in order that we be spared the wrath that is to come.
Every day, as we study Scripture, we are reassured by its confirmation.
As Amos says, nothing happens or is to happen that has not been warned us through the prophets. What a pity that Churchianity, in the main, refuses to teach prophecy.
There are three areas of biblical prophecy we should be looking at:
- The World
- The Church
These are the big Three. And I placed the significance of Israel last, because, simply, that’s where this fallen world places it. I make no excuse from having plagiarized this comment from the Prophetic Scroll, wherein this point was recently made.
This is not surprising. The ‘World’ hates Israel because the ‘World’ presently lies under the overlordship of Satan. He has spent the aeons since his expulsion from the Heavenlies in his attempt to destroy the sons of man. In particular, that segment of mankind to whom God, through Abraham, made an eternal covenant. And this, though Abraham was not asked to ‘sign off’ on that which was gifted him directly, by God. As a result, Abraham becomes father to the chosen remnant that our Lord set aside for Himself.
We should look at Israel first. For that which the World places last, prophetically speaking, God places first.
Whatever will impact the World the most has both its origin and finish in Israel.
ISRAEL AND HER PORTION:
Israel is the name God chose for Jacob.
In the Hebrew (Genesis Chapter 32), it means ‘Struggle with God.’ A night-long confrontation took place between an Angel of the Lord and the Patriarch Jacob, who, having wrestled with the divine all night, finally prevailed.
The Hebraic translation of the text relates the name to the ongoing confrontation, together with the perpetual dialogue that Israel (personified by the Tribes) had and continues to have with their Elohim, (God).
That relationship has never been static, as borne out by ensuing history. I submit that this situation will only be resolved when the longed-for reconciliation between God and His chosen people is validated by the return of King Jesus (Har Mashiach).
Through Jacob, son of Isaac (and the grandson of Abraham), descends his twelve sons (to different wives). In this lineage, chosen by God, lies His own special, set aside portion. They are set aside to ultimately cease contending with God and become truly a nation of priests and a light to the world.
This remnant was chosen from a portion of the seed of Abraham that was made acceptable to God. We should therefore reason that God divinely orchestrated this before the chief characters in the lineage were even born.
And in so choosing, God chose NOT to accept all of Abraham’s children, notwithstanding that God told Abraham that his seed would be as many as the stars of the universe.
Sarah, Abraham’s first wife, was barren for many years; and both she and Abraham prayerfully longed for a child. She finally despaired that her hope would be granted; so, not trusting God, she sent her husband Abraham unto Hagar, her Egyptian serving woman who, conceiving, bore Ishmael.
Though firstborn, Ishmael was not the choice of God.
However, Sarah’s hope, in the midst of her despair, was granted when her longed-for child (Isaac) was given Abraham as the long-promised gifted blessing from God.
This followed the visitation of the Angels of God (many believe one of whom was Jesus himself, though yet unborn of flesh) to the tents of Abraham where he rested. This was not far from the cities of the plain (Sodom and Gomorrah) where his nephew Lot had taken residence.
God had specifically told his friend, Abraham (in whom he delighted for his steadfast devotion and faith) that he would prosper his seed forever, but that it would descend through the child that the hitherto barren Sarah would bear.
Isaac, then, is the commencement of God’s chosen lineage.
Though Abraham took other women following the death of Sarah, it is only through the lineage that descends through His sons Isaac and Ishmael that our present world is manifest.
However, God specifically rejected the Abrahamic seed that descends through Ishmael, Abraham’s son through Hagar the Egyptian servant-woman to his wife, Sarah.
Ishmael was a wild, unruly man who went his own way. He chose to marry a Canaanite woman and led a life that failed to glorify God. Twelve princes descend from Ishmael, and he is the father of all the Arab peoples.
Isaac, chosen of God, fathered Jacob and Esau. Esau was the firstborn of twins. Yet, he was not to inherit the birthright.
Prophetically, as the twins were thrust from the womb of Rebekah, Esau came forth, firstborn. Jacob was almost simultaneously born, clutching the heel of his brother.
The symbolism is clear; Jacob would supplant his brother as firstborn because he was chosen by God.
Esau, brother to Jacob, was a hunter, often forsaking the tents of his family. Jacob, favoured by his mother, stayed close to the counsel of both parents.
Conversely, Esau was rejected because he held his birthright (as firstborn son) of so little consequence that he eventually sold it for one meal provided by his brother Jacob. Esau had returned from a particularly long hunt in the wilderness, without success. He was badly famished. Jacob sought payment for the meal by a token. The token asked for, and accepted by Esau, was the transfer of his firstborn status and right of inheritance, to his brother.
The birthright that Esau sold to Jacob could not (having been legally sold) be redeemed. It was lost forever along with the lineage of subsequent inheritance that would otherwise have sprung from his own loins and gifted by right to his own sons.
This present world bears witness to the contempt in which Esau held his birthright. So thoughtlessly given away that he would sell all his future hope and rights for one meal to fill his empty stomach.
Man’s stomach bears the witness. It is insatiable in its incessant demand for continued satiation, even beyond the actual achievement of basic sustenance. Surely, our preoccupation with gourmet cooking reality shows bears witness to this.
In comparison, it is the starving soul within us that should always be nurtured first. We express this ‘divine feeding’ through the medium of our thanks to God, made through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Jacob, though born after the expulsion of his twin (Esau) from his mother’s womb, would be counted as father to the Hebraic tribes, chosen by God as a future nation of priests and a light to the whole world of men.
Because the will of God was expressed in rejection of the unchosen, the seed of Ishmael and Esau are not to be counted in that remnant chosen of God. This rejection remains, even though their seed has proliferated throughout the nations that they subsequently fathered.
NB: I’ve retold the descended lineage of Abraham to remind us that both the tainted and rejected seed of Abraham represent this present World.
The nations have, in the main, remained locked in denial and sin, and have thus rejected God. They have no birthright because of this. Though they may claim Christianity as some sort of cultural cloak, you would be hard-put to find Jesus in the equation. Calling yourself ‘Christian’ under such circumstances is meaningless.
As God chose His remnant through Isaac and Jacob, I think we can safely assume that it is Satan who has always ruled the nations through the seed of the rejected sons.
The nations, as presently arraigned, are to be expunged from the Earth without portion.
When you reject the portion offered, you reject all future claim.
It reminds me of the verbiage of a man’s ‘Last Will and Testament,’ “I hereby revoke all previous wills and testaments and leave all of my estate to…!”
God has offered us His son, the Christ King, who comes with the portion of Grace as His ‘plate of pottage.’ In the main, mankind, as represented by the nations, has rejected the divine nature of the gift. Denial thereby seals our ultimate fate. We have lost our birthright of New Birth offered through the Grace of Jesus.
Brothers and sisters all, do not, under any circumstances, believe the scurrilous heresy currently being advanced. It falsely indicates that all of us have a divine future with God in the midst of unrepentance and a lifetime of denial of both Father and Son.
A Call to Holiness
Hebrews 12:15-17 “Be careful that no one falls short of the grace of God, so that no root of bitterness will spring up to cause trouble and defile many. See to it that no one is sexually immoral, or is godless like Esau who sold his birthright for a single meal. For you know that afterward, when he wanted to inherit the blessing, he was rejected. He could find no ground for repentance, though he sought the blessing with tears.” Berean Study Bible
Contemplate yourself in this awful position when humbled at last, you are brought before God at His judgment seat.
WHAT THE JEWS DID WITH THEIR MEAL OF POTTAGE:
God was emphatic about this in his blessings and also his warnings that he gave through Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and later, in the time of the Exodus, through Moses when it was explained to them the responsibilities that came with their decision to worship Him and His acceptance of them as His chosen ones.
The bountiful blessings upon the Hebraic Tribes that beget the Jews were equally balanced by a succinct series of curses that would befall them if they turned from the path God had placed them under.
For this reason, were they first placed under the governorship of Moses, then a series of Judges. Eventually, turning further from God, they demanded to be ruled by earthly Kings.
God acceded to the latter demand.
They demanded to be ruled by despotic kings, as were the nations that God had helped them defeat and scourge.
The Tribes chose to forget the reason that God replaced the Canaanite kingdoms. It was because of their fornicating depravity, covetous seeking of pleasure, together with the ritual murder of innocent children given in satanic sacrifice to placate their inanimate idols.
Israel had, through intermarriage, developed a carnal taste for the excesses of the nations that still adjoined them or over which they ruled. And they had become envious that they were ruled by kings.
Funny, isn’t it? When you choose evil, you invariably want the ‘whole box of dice.’
In fact, God had His Prophet Samuel pick them a king. Samuel consecrated Saul, son of Nun, who soon became exactly like those he was replacing amongst the surrounding nations.
Though following David and Solomon, several God-fearing and devout kings emerged. In the main, the kings that followed were both an indifferent and generally evil bag. They were drawn from the people and reflected them in every aspect, whether from the ranks of the nobility or of the ordinary.
In short, we can draw a viable parallel between most rulers in ancient times and those that presently ‘govern’ us. The tendency is always to demand more from us while, at the same time, enforcing repressive measures of control.
Euphemistically, we like to imagine that many of us are free and live unrestricted in this wonderland we label ‘democracy.’ Looking around, one can see that it more resembles the ‘vanishing prairie.’
In our inheritance of the faith of our spiritual ancestors, both the blessings and the curses apply equally to us if we refuse to acknowledge and turn away from our great sin of denial of God and that which flows from it.
We have only one way out, and that, through Jesus. In truth, you cannot ‘inherit’ faith; you earn the birthright we know as ‘New Birth’ by living it.
However, to those accepted by God through His Son, one word echoes down to us throughout the aeons of prophetic biblical history:
(This is the subject of Part II that has already been posted out of order.)