April 15, 2010 ©Homer Kizer
Printable/viewable PDF format for browsers that do not support Greek or Hebrew characters
On Tax Day & about Tea Parties
When Samuel became old, he made his sons judges over Israel … his sons did not walk in his ways but turned aside after gain. They took bribes and perverted justice. / Then all the elders of Israel gathered together and came to Samuel at Ramah and said to him, “Behold, you are old and your sons do not walk in your ways. Now appoint for us a king to judge us like all the nations.” But the thing displeased Samuel when they said, “Give us a king to judge us.” And Samuel prayed to the Lord. And the Lord said to Samuel, “Obey the voice of the people in all that they say to you, for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected me from being king over them. According to all the deeds that they have done, from the day I brought them up out of Egypt even to this day, forsaking me and serving other gods, so they are also doing to you. Now then, obey their voice; only you shall solemnly warn them and show them the ways of the king who shall reign over them.” (1 Sam 8:1–9 emphasis added)
Across the United States of America on this day when income taxes are due, “ordinary” Americans are protesting with a difference from forty years ago when many of these same protestors demonstrated against the Vietnam War. The chant then was, Hell no, we won’t go! The chants now are quips about runaway Federal spending, about a health insurance bill the majority of the nation doesn’t want and no one in the nation can afford, about the political establishment of the nation taking a hard left turn that will have America looking like European democracies that are the model of mediocrity. But We the People elected the present political regime, and unfortunately, a nation—this nation—gets the leadership it deserves as the world slinks away from the light that is God … when the world can get no farther from God than it is, a state not in the distant future but near, God will intervene as He has said He would through His servants the prophets millennia ago, so long ago neither God nor His words are “real” to progressives, socialists, Marxists. God has become a myth. He has become a cultural artifact for even Christians. His words have no real credibility. His words are not believed. But then, they never were really heard and believed.
Before the Exodus, the people of Israel worshiped idols and the detestable things of Egypt, and this same nation within a nation would not listen to the Lord when in Egypt (Ezek 20:7–8). Today’s protesting Christian patriots will not listen to the Lord, whose kingdom is not of this world or from this world (John 18:36) … understanding the concept of a nation within a nation is essential to understanding that Christians are individually and collectively the Body of Christ (1 Cor 12:27), and by extension, the Body of the Son of Man. Before a Christian can understand spiritual birth (being born of God), the Christian has to be able to use dual referents; for spiritual birth is about making alive the man [inner self] within the man or woman (i.e., the fleshly body). This inner self (Paul’s old man) is outwardly invisible as the nation of Israel in Egypt is historically invisible; this inner self is to the fleshly body of a person as Israel was to historic Egypt, with death equating to slavery in that before the inner self is brought to life through receipt of the divine breath of God [B<,Ø:" 2,@Ø], the Holy Spirit [B<,Ø:" (4@<], the inner self is as spiritually dead as the red clay corpse of the first Adam was physically dead before Elohim [singular in usage] breathed life into the nostrils of this first man (Gen 2:7). The inner self has been, by God, consigned to disobedience (Rom 11:32) as Israel in Egypt was enslaved by betrayal and deceit going back to when Joseph’s brothers conspired to kill Joseph because the Lord had caused him to dream about the sun, the moon, and eleven stars bowing down to him (Gen 37:9, 18–33).
Jacob understood Joseph’s dream: “‘Shall I [the sun] and your mother [who was already dead] and your brothers indeed come to bow ourselves to the ground before you’” (Gen 37:10) … how was it that Rachel, who died in childbirth, would bow before Joseph, a question that has an answer, but not an answer Jacob could imagine.
In the presence of God, “life” is freedom—without freedom, a person is not truly alive, which has been understood by many philosophers, and which is why the United States of America has been called the world’s last, best hope for humankind. But God is the one who gives life and who gives freedom; for human beings have been created in “death,” not in life … the “life” with which a human being is born doesn’t permit the person freedom to leave time [space-time], or even the freedom to keep the law of God. The fleshly body of a person and the appetites of the flesh place demands upon the person that must be satisfied as if these appetites were work quotas, figuratively the number of bricks that must be made each day to satisfy the Pharaoh.
Physical life is to spiritual life as slavery is to freedom: the person who is merely alive physically is not free to eat or not eat, or to come and go as he or she pleases. This person cannot keep the commandments (Rom 8:7), but remains inwardly imprisoned by sin (unbelief manifested as disobedience). Only when God gives eternal life in Christ Jesus (Rom 6:23) does sin no longer have dominion over a person (v. 14), unless of course, the person returns to sin as its willing bondservant [slave] (v. 16). … Without exception, Christian patriots protesting today are not truly free: their protesting comes from them realizing that additional limitations have been placed upon them as unwanted shackles. They want the freedom they imagine that America’s founding fathers had and gave to them, but their desire to return America to the nation America’s founding fathers established has a problem that encompasses slavery: on this day when income taxes are due, Christian patriots are less than what they have earned. Forty percent of their income goes to taxes, figuratively making them six-tenths of a person, not a subject to be addressed lightly. … But, the progressive will argue, someone has to pay for roads and public water systems, fire and police protection, all of those things that distinguish modern America from the pioneer land of the founding fathers.
The United States of America began as a nation deeply divided over the issue of human slavery, with neither slave nor freeman understanding the ramifications of slavery, a subject that remains an open wound on America’s conscience. To engage the subject invites the slander of the ignorant and the loathing of the informed … in ancient Egypt, slavery was not a black-white issue but a circumcised-uncircumcised issue, with outward circumcision “marking” the person as a slave.
For readers unfamiliar with the concept of “marking,” when non-judgmentally categorizing any thing the observer looks to see difference and what distinguishes or denotes this difference. The unmarked category is what is common, undistinguished or undistinguishable from the whole. What is marked is what is different, with the most common example used being the words “man” and “male.” The masculine gender is unmarked; the feminine gender is marked with the addition of “wo” in “woman,” and with the addition of “fe” in “female,” and with the addition of “s” to “he,” a linguistic situation that has given rise to the saying that there is no unmarked female. Unlike with a man, whatever the female wears marks her; however she grooms or adorns herself marks her. Her visible appearance can be read as if her gender functioned as a decodable language she cannot avoid using, and this is not the case with males who are as individually indistinguishable as penguins are at a distance.
What is marked is what is not common—that which is “special” even if not valued within the whole.
Yet in biblical parlance in a reversal of logic, what is common is unclean while what is uncommon is clean or holy. And this reversal of logic has provided narrative tension for Western secular literature.
The descendants of Noah form the common stock of today’s humanity. There is really nothing to distinguish a person of Chinese ancestry from a person of Nordic ancestry other than some localize variation in skull shape, pelvic angle, skin color, hair color, eye fold—that actually seems like quite a lot of difference, but not really. The greatest difference between a Chinese national and, say, an American is each individual’s construction of “reality,” which is dependent upon first language usage.
With God, the difference that matters is of the inner self, not of a person’s outward appearance, with this difference reflected by and reinforced by the first language the human infant learned. Without painting with too broad of a brush, Chinese language-use causes a person to minimize the “self” and elevate the “collective.” The individual is suppressed, and the community is celebrated; whereas American English, derived from Protestant Christian thought, tends to emphasis the authority of the individual, whether it is to read Scripture to determine for the self what God expects of the person, or whether it is to read the U.S. Constitution to determine for the self what “laws” are lawful.
There was a reason why the Lord made a covenant with Abram, the son of Terah, the son of Nabor, the son of Serug, the great grandson of Eber, through whom the Hebrews came, with this reason based on Abram’s faith that permitted him to act as an individual, not as a collective.
For reasons not fully developed in Scripture, Hebrews were known but disliked in Egypt (Abram going to Egypt certainly did not help the reputation of Hebrews — Gen 12:10–20) long before Joseph was sold into slavery or before Jacob went down to Egypt seventy in number: when Joseph’s brothers came to buy grain a second time, and when all eleven of his brother “bowed down to him to the ground … they bowed their heads and prostrated themselves” (Gen 43:26, 28), Joseph told those Egyptians serving him to, “‘Serve the food.’ They served him by himself, and them by themselves, and the Egyptians who ate with him by themselves, because Egyptians could not eat with Hebrews, for that is an abomination to the Egyptians” (vv. 31–32). It didn’t suddenly become an abomination for Egyptians to eat with Hebrews when Joseph was sold to Potiphar. And while Egyptians might well not have eaten with anyone who was not an Egyptian, the language of the prohibition suggests that Hebrews were known to Egyptians long before Joseph arrived.
A people whose focus is on the authority of the individual tend to make for poor slaves, unless, of course, the slaveholder convinces the people that they are really “free” … the old serpent, Satan the devil, who is more subtle, more crafty than any human can imagine—who has deceived the entire world (Rev 12:9)—convinced Christians that they were free when they continued to transgress the commandments, thereby making themselves willing slaves to sin. The Adversary used and continues to use the language of Scripture against early, mid, and endtime Christians as Pharaoh used circumcision against ancient Israel.
The Apostle Paul wrote, “For the law of J@Ø B<,b:"J@H JH .TH ¦< OD4FJè [0F@Ø [the spirit of the life in Christ Jesus] freed you from the law of sin and death” (Rom 8:2) … the person who is freed from bondage to sin has the liberty to keep the commandments which, before, could not be kept because the person was a slave to sin. The Christian is not “free” to commit sin, but has been given the freedom not to commit sin when born of God. But the Adversary in his craftiness twisted freedom into slavery by convincing Christians that they could sin without their transgressions of the commandments being counted against them, a theological position Paul utterly rejected: “Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves, you are the slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience which leads to righteousness” (Rom 6:16).
In America, the arrogance of President Obama has served to ignite a secular examination of what it means to be free, a necessary precursor to some of these Christian patriots remaining free when they have been liberated from indwelling sin and death at the Second Passover. Most of the greater Christian Church will rebel against God once they have tasted true freedom as Israel in the wilderness sought to return to Egypt but was prevented from doing so by Moses.
At the time of Moses, in Egypt Hebrews and Egyptians were about equal in number (Ex 1:9; 5:5), with the language suggesting there might have actually been more Hebrews than Egyptians. But these Hebrews, the descendants of Jacob, were distinguished from Egyptians by the marker of outward circumcision. Even though both peoples worshiped the same idols and had essentially the same culture—the daughters of the priest of Midian didn’t identify the fugitive Moses as a Hebrew, but as an Egyptian (Ex 2:19); plus, Joseph’s brothers, when they came to buy grain (Gen 42:6), did not recognize Joseph (v. 8) who appeared as an Egyptian—Hebrews and Egyptians were distinct nations, separated by the “marker” of outward circumcision, an addition (that is a subtraction) made to the male as a linguistic prefix is added to the male to mark the biological female.
In Egypt, Egyptians were the common people [equivalent in America to WASPs] whereas the Hebrews were marked as different, with this marking of circumcision making Israel the firstborn son of the Lord (Ex 4:22) … today, receipt of a second breath of life and circumcision of the heart inwardly marks a son of God as different from friends and biological family; for this inwardly marked person is a servant of the Lord and an heir of the Father. As outward circumcision in Egypt marked Israelites as slaves of Pharaoh but also as the natural firstborn son of the Lord, inward circumcision since the spirit was given marks the inner new self as belonging to the Father and the Son.
Pharaoh’s daughter, upon seeing the baby Moses, said, “‘This is one of the Hebrews’ children’” (Ex 2:6). She knew the infant was a Hebrew, not because Moses was of a different skin color, but because Moses was circumcised—he was three months old, and he would have been circumcised on the eighth day of life. … Moses was marked as a slave child, again not because of skin color but because the foreskin of his penis had been cut away: it was apparently more important to Moses’ father, a descendant of the house of Levi, to obey the Lord and mark Moses as a slave than attempt to pass Moses off as an unmarked Egyptian. Pharaoh, in his cleverness, apparently used Israel’s ideology against the nation: Pharaoh probably encouraged the Hebrews to mark themselves as their ancestor Joseph was marked via circumcision, for this marking was then irreversible (however, during Ptolemaic rule over Jerusalem, many Jews attempted to remove the evidence of circumcision so as to pass themselves off as Greeks).
Israel as a nation within a nation, doing the things that Egyptians did, supplying muscle-power to Egypt as human beasts of burden, is analogous to African slaves in Colonial and Antebellum America, but African slaves were not the mirror image of Israel in Egypt … the problem for Americans is that though some Native Americans were enslaved, most slaves were of African descent, with the evidence of their ancestry discernable by their skin color. Outward circumcision really cannot be hidden, but this marking is not evident until a close examination of the person is made. Skin color, however, is evident even at a great distance. Thus, while similarities between Israel in Egypt and enslaved African Americans hold, the mirror image of Israel in Egypt is the inner self consigned to disobedience. It is these similarities and differences that are in play today, when Christian patriots with small copies of the U.S. Constitution in shirt pockets and placards denouncing America’s runaway spending in raised hands protest change you can believe in that has become more of the same on steroids.
The greater Christian Church is a nation within a nation—a nation of enslaved (in death) inner natural selves in fleshly bodies of outwardly “Christian” individuals. Only those inner selves who have actually received life through the person receiving a second breath of life are today “free,” but even these Christians have limited freedom for sin and death continue to dwell in their fleshly members (their freedom is as Joseph’s freedom was). Their inner new selves must war with that indwelling sin and death Paul observed (Rom 7:7–25); for Paul individually had occurring within him what was also collectively occurring within the greater Body of Christ … the greater Christian Church needs liberated from sin and death as Israel in Egypt needed liberated from slavery, with Pharaoh in Egypt serving [after his heart was hardened] as the shadow and type of the present prince of this world.
Unfortunately, the greater Church as the last Eve believed and continues to believe the same lie that the first Eve believed: you shall not surely die (Gen 3:4).
Using the concept of a nation enslaved within a nation, with slavery equating to death—and unfortunately but apostolically appropriate, to darkness—the first Adam was enslaved in death (i.e., in the red clay mud of the structural elements of this earth) until Elohim [singular in usage] breathed into this first man’s nostrils and Adam became a breathing creature, a nephesh. Elohim “liberated” Adam from death. The dust of the earth to either side of Adam remained without life, but the dust used to form Adam was free to speak with God, to see what God had created, to eat and be nourished by the fruit of the garden the Lord God planted.
Adam was the dust of the earth, but with a difference: he was dust that had been “marked” through receipt of the breath of life, with receipt of this breath making him special for as long as he retained this breath. Likewise, every son [descendant] of Adam has been “marked” through receipt of breath; for a son of Adam has no indwelling life but that received from the first Adam. Men are not born with immortal souls.
I said in my heart with regard to the children of man that God is testing them that they may see that they themselves are but beasts. For what happens to the children of man and what happens to the beasts is the same; as one dies, so dies the other. They all have the same breath, and man has no advantage over the beasts, for all is vanity. All go to one place. All are from the dust, and to dust all return. Who knows whether the [breath or wind] of man goes upward and the [breath] of the beast goes down into the earth? (Eccl 3:18–21 emphasis added)
Augustine was wrong! … It is vanity to believe that humankind, prior to being born of God, has life that differs from the lives of beasts; nevertheless, Augustine of Hippo wrote,
This faith [Christianity] maintains, and it must be believed: neither the soul nor the human body may suffer complete annihilation, but the impious shall rise again into everlasting punishment, and the just into life everlasting. (On Christian Doctrine. Book 1: XXI. Trans. D.W. Robertson, Jr.)
The human body is dust, the base elements of the earth. At death it returns to dust that is blown about by the winds of this earth. It is stone ground into fine flour; thus, it is a shadow and type of cereal grains that have inherent life within them, with this life able to bring forth many kernels of grain from one kernel whereas one stone is unable to bring forth another stone.
Man is the dust of the earth with physical life sustained through the cellular oxidation [dark fire] of simple carbohydrates. Without the breath breathed into the nostrils of Adam, this first man would have been merely a complex mud patty, and no human being would be here today to question whether God exists. But because Elohim liberated a handful of dust from death, and because the dark fire breathed into the nostrils of Adam has been continued generation by generation; human beings have multiplied on the face of this earth; societies have formed; and men have enslaved other men without realizing that no man, regardless of outward appearance, is anything but dust liberated from death.
No person has the right to enslave another person even though God permitted slavery as He permitted divorce—and as He made sin alive through giving Israel the commandments so that sin might slay the nation that would not hear His words. However, because God allows injustice doesn’t make Him the author of injustice: the first man was created in darkness [death], then given life, then placed in Eden, the garden of God, as the mirror image of the anointed cherub who was in Eden, the garden of God (Ezek 28:12), then cast from the mountain of God (v. 16) as a profane thing, then condemned to death when the Lord brings/brought fire out from his belly to consume him (v. 18) … from God’s heavenly perspective, the Adversary is already ashes and the saints are already glorified (Rom 8:30). It is only when these events are seen from the perspective of being within time that they have not yet happened. And it is only from being within the perspective of time that slavery exists, and exists to make evident the juxtaposition of physical and heavenly life within a person; for nothing is gained when a person dies physically, for the dead know knowing (Eccl 9:5). Slavery exists to make visible the spiritually lifeless state into which every human being is naturally born as a son of disobedience.
If a person wants to pick a fight with God because He allowed slavery to occur, then let this person pick a fight with God; however, this person must understand that he or she was born with no indwelling eternal or heavenly life (i.e., no immortal soul), was born a slave to sin and death. … How do you suppose this fight will turn out when it is the Father who raises the dead from death?
The marking of ownership of one human being by another has usually been through tattooing or cutting of some sort (i.e., something that is done to a person after the birth of the person). And this is where American slavery becomes heinous, but also a metaphor for the descendants of Adam being consigned to disobedience so that God can have mercy on all (again, Rom 11:32) … when skin color, genetically assigned to the person before birth, is used to denote ownership, the person becomes an apt representative of all of humankind before receipt of a second breath of life. To repeat a previous point, in an approximate comparison African Americans prior to emancipation were as Israel was in Egypt prior to the first Passover: they were physically alive, but not socially alive. They were less than a person (six-tenths of a person in Colonial America). And in their social lifelessness they vividly portrayed for Colonial Christians the status these Christians had before God. Yes, Colonial Christians had physical life but no spiritual life: in the face of every slave of African ancestry, these Colonial Christians were seeing themselves as God saw them, physically breathing but slaves to sin.
Indeed, Colonial Christians in the late 18th-Century could—if they would have had spiritual wisdom—see how God saw them by how they perceived African slaves, some of whom were skilled craftsmen but most of whom were beasts of burden … New England states outlawed slavery long before the nation ended slavery, but New England was not substantially more righteousness than southern states; for the industrialized Northeast turned many white Anglo Saxon Calvinists into factory cogs unable to quit a job, or to economically miss a day of work.
The following is an excerpt from the essay collection, From the Margins:
George Wyscaver, when showing me the work of a Japanese woodcarver, a gunstock carved while George was stationed in Japan, told me the older woodcarver said, "All Americans are slaves."
"No, Americans are free," George had insisted.
"Not free. You have to punch time-clock. You not free."
What the woodcarver told George would periodically trouble him, which was why he related the incident to me one night while we were working together on the recovery boilers in G-P’s Toledo mill—he was lead fireman; I was second helper. George knew he wasn't free. He had a new house, new vehicles, a wife with fairly expensive tastes. He couldn't quit the mill even though he wanted to. He couldn't make enough money anywhere else to pay his bills. But he was unwilling to admit that he had traded freedom for things.
"Well, George," I asked that night, "are you free?"
"Of course. We all are."
"Then why don't you quit?" I knew he wanted to leave the mill, but he had built a new house rather than starting a business as his brother had or like I had. His only way out of the mill was his stock portfolio, small but growing.
George never mentioned the Japanese woodcarver again although I did on a couple of quiet nights in the mill when I wondered about what that woodcarver said. Like George, I was then a figurative "wage‑slave." Initially, I had freely accepted the credit so readily extended to Georgia‑Pacific employees. After all, we have a right to pursue happiness, defined at the time as a new Bronco and enough gas to run all over the West. I remember saying sharp words to my wife in November, 1969, when we received back to back three hundred dollar a month gasoline credit card bills. I said rather loudly that we couldn't spend more than one hundred twenty‑five a month on gas. And this was when gas averaged thirty‑two cents a gallon.
Colonials of good character, but not godly character, beseeched the Most High for wisdom, knowledge, and understanding when founding this nation. They studied Scripture. They sought purity. Yet they continued to hide in their loins the pagan dogmas of early Greek converts, dogmas and doctrines that precluded them from being born of God … with very few exceptions, the Ephrata Cloister being one, Colonial Christians refused to make a journey of faith from Babylon to heavenly Jerusalem. They stopped when confronted by the Sabbath, which was to them as a raging river, the flooding Jordan which parted for Joshua [[0F@Ø — from Acts 7:45, which in Greek translates as Jesus] as the Sea of Reeds had parted from Moses. But these Colonial Christians lacked faith: all of them who continued to worship on Sunday lacked the faith necessary to walk as Jesus walked. So it is through Colonial Christians’ transgression of the Sabbath commandment, as easily seen as the skin color of an African American slave, that these Christians maintained their voluntary enslavement in unbelief.
Again, a slave of the Adversary will transgress the law, with the transgression most commonly seen being working on the Sabbath, then trying to enter into God’s rest on the following day … in this world, worshiping God on Sunday is what is commonly done; is what identifies a person as part of the common pool of humankind; is what makes a Christian a spiritual Egyptian, and an oppressor of the firstborn son of God. Yet before God, worshiping on Sunday marks the Christian as a slave of the Adversary with much greater certainty than skin color marked a Colonial African American as a slave. Thus, the relationship between Colonial Christians and African American slaves was, indeed, reflective of the relationship between Egyptians and Hebrews in the days of Moses, with Colonial Christians of Anglo-Saxon ancestry being both slaves of sin in the heavenly realm and slaveholders in this physical world.
Christendom is not as simple as some believe, but it is simple if a person has enough faith to believe God and cease serving sin as its faithful slave.
The U.S. Constitution became the legal document enforcing the spiritual blindness that kept Colonial Christians enslaved to the prince of this world as his faithful “Hebrew” overseers … the Constitution is not a shining pillar of spiritual enlightenment but a slaveholder’s instrument that guarantees permanent enslavement of a people through We the People obtaining the right to choose for themselves who shall rule over them when they remain slaves to sin. These slaves have been given the freedom to choose who, of themselves, is the basest of them; for God sets the lowliest of men over a nation (Dan 4:17). Yes, Americans were divinely given the right to choose who is this lowest of the low, now a man who goes around the world apologizing for American exceptionalism, telling all who will listen that America is not a Christian nation.
Colonial Christians had no spiritual life, a self-evident declaration based on these Christians continuing to live as willing slaves to sin: they were spiritually as the first Adam was physically prior to when Elohim breathed into the nostrils of this man of mud. But the pattern of how they might receive spiritual life was formed by Jesus—
To fulfill all righteous, John reluctantly baptized Jesus, and the breath of the Father [B<,Ø:" 2,@Ø] descended upon Jesus in the visible form of a dove (Matt 3:15–16), giving to Jesus a second breath of life and whereby establishing the model for how the Father raises the dead that are physically living.
Prior to the Second Passover liberation of the greater Christian Church, those who are born of God are individually drawn from this world by the Father (John 6:44, 65) and called by Christ Jesus (John 15:16). They then make a journey of faith from spiritual Babylon to heavenly Jerusalem, a journey of faith that will cause them to imitate Paul as Paul followed Christ, a journey of faith that will cause them to keep the commandments of God. Until a Christian begins to keep the commandments, all of them, the Christian remains a slave to sin. Grace, the mantle of Christ Jesus’ righteousness, covers those times when the Christian comes up short, but does not cover the Christian who willingly either remains serving sin or returns to serving sin as its slave.
Ancient Israel had a long history of idolatry: this slave nation really never ceased worshiping idols during Joshua’s lifetime (Josh 24:14). The people of Israel brought their idols into the Promised Land as Rachel, Jacob’s second and greatly loved wife, brought her father Laban’s household gods into Canaan. The people of Israel hid those detestable things of Egypt so that Moses could not see them, but the Lord made sin alive at Sinai so that sin might slay the entire nation. It didn’t matter that Moses could not see what was between loins and hidden in bags: once the commandments were given and sin brought to life, sin sought out what was hidden so that what promised life [the law] would prove to be the death of the people of Israel … when confronted by Laban, Jacob swore that if Laban found his household gods among Jacob’s entourage, the person who had them “‘shall not live’” (Gen31:32), but he swore not knowing that Rachel had stolen them.
The Lord knew—and Jacob’s oath was remembered.
The people of Israel never ceased serving other gods after the nation left slavery: Israel took their idols from Egypt with them into the Promised Land and worshiped these idols throughout the reign of the judges and even afterwards. The people of Israel covenanted with the Lord to serve no other God but the Lord at Sinai, then again on the plains of Moab, then again at Shechem in the days of Joshua. But the word of the people of Israel was as worthless as Rachel’s word was to her father Laban, whose household gods came to represent “death,” and the land of Laban became the representation of death as the land of Egypt became the representation of sin, of unbelief, the root of sin.
Rachel stealing Laban’s household gods, then telling her father, “‘Let not my lord be angry that I cannot rise before you, for the way of women is upon me’” (Gen 31:35 emphasis added) as she sat on the camel’s saddle in which she had hidden the household gods, becomes a manifestation of the archetype daughter of man (Gen 6:2) … the biblical exegesis of the 16th-Century Reformer Huldrych Zwingli that has come to dominate Protestant Christendom and even the political thought of America’s founding fathers will only permit Rachel’s words to pertain to her menstrual cycle. But when the prophet Isaiah writes, “We have all become like one who is unclean [defiled], / and our righteous deeds are like a polluted garment [a menstrual rag]” (Isa 64:6), then what Rachel says about the way of women assumes greater meaning, especially considering that in Isaiah’s thought-couplet, Israel’s righteousness equating to the way of women is in the spiritual position in the natural/spiritual paradigm.
Israel’s righteousness, Christian righteousness equates to the way of women, which is to hide purloined household gods between one’s loins while professing innocence to the Lord; which is to sample forbidden fruit while under the cloak of her husband’s obedience. The way of women is the way of Eve, the way of human thought, of human righteousness. Paul writes to Timothy, “Let a woman learn quietly with all submissiveness. I do not permit a woman to teach or to exercise authority over a man; rather, she is to remain quiet. For Adam was formed first, then Eve; and Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and became a transgressor. Yet she will be saved through childbearing” (1 Tim 2:11–15) … sin did not enter this world through Eve, but through Adam (Rom 5:12) who was not deceived. Adam will not and indeed cannot be saved through childbirth, but through the way of women the last Eve, the Christian Church, will be saved when many sons of God are brought to glory. She will stand and begin to walk uprightly before God, leaving behind her household gods she has kept hidden in her loins.
The inner new self that is a son of God is neither male nor female (Gal 3:28). What Paul writes pertains to the flesh where biology is evident; it doesn’t directly pertain to the inner new self that is not like a human fetus but like the caterpillar stage of a butterfly, the stage where all growth occurs; the stage in which the human being devours this world’s resources as the inner son of God grows rapidly without revealing what this son of God will be when glorified.
Yet the inner new self is “marked” by circumcision of the heart as a woman is marked, and the inner new self will be saved by childbirth; i.e., by the mortal flesh putting on immortality when judgments are revealed. So the analogy of the Church, the assembly of inner new selves, collectively being the last Eve holds … taking meaning from Scripture via typology [typological exegesis] is reasoning by analogy.
The Zurich Reformer Zwingli had, perhaps, more to do with the Protestant Reformation than any other person, including Martin Luther. Zwingli sought a reformation of government as well as theology: he trusted the people, and he was a strong advocate of representational democracy. He sincerely believed that men who had come from women’s loins ought not be called “spiritual” because they performed ecclesiastical or civil functions. He believed it was the duty of all men to rule in Christ’s name and to obey His laws; that no man was above the law. His logic held that ecclesiastical and civil authority was jointly held by duly elected representatives of the people. And as a clergyman, he died as a battlefield physician trying to save human life in a war he inspired.
But Zwingli’s greatest influence on 21st-Century American Tea-Party adherents comes from his theology, not from his advocacy for representational democracy. For Zwingli, if the Old or New Testament did not explicitly state something, no Christian should believe or practice the thing. For Zwingli, the Bible was to be read literally, not figuratively. Scripture had simple, literal meanings that could be ascertained by any lay person. Scripture only had one meaning—the Bible could only be read one way. If the Bible said it, a Christian was to do it. If the Bible didn’t say it, a Christian was forbidden from doing it, regardless of whatever “it” was. And Zwingli’s exegesis principles became the foundational constructs for the social structure of English colonies in America, where every person could read the Bible and the law for him or herself.
Radical Protestant and Puritan societies in America were based upon every person being able to read the Bible and being able to take a single, authoritative meaning from Jesus’ words that were, according to Jesus, figures of speech (John 16:25) … obviously a problem exists; hence my ancestors came to America as Separatists (my mother’s side; ca 1620 CE) and Mennonites (my father’s side; ca 1683 CE). They were Anabaptists, a tradition I came to accept when still a young man: I am a Sabbatarian Anabaptist with theological roots going back to rebuttals of arguments Zwingli made in 1525–27 against infant baptism when he did not realize that human maturation forms the shadow and type of spiritual maturation, that the small children about whom Jesus said not to hinder from coming to Him represented new Christians recently born of God, new Christians that Zwingli strove mightily to keep from Christ … Zwingli’s argument against believers’ baptism was that by waiting to baptize a person until the person was old enough to knowingly profess faith in Christ, the Church hindered small children from coming to Christ. But Zwingli’s argument was based on the assumption that every person is born with an indwelling immortal soul, that eternal life is not the gift of God in Jesus Christ as Paul said it was (Rom 6:23) but came with conception, regardless of how or under what circumstances the child was conceived. Zwingli did not understand that a person received a second breath [B<,Ø:"] of life that made alive (i.e., gave life in the heavenly realm to) the inner self when the person received the spirit of God [B<,Ø:" 2,@Ø]. Thus, human beings are without indwelling eternal life until the person is born of spirit [B<,Ø:"] that is like wind [B<,Ø:"] or moving air, with the evidence of whether a person has truly been born of spirit coming by whether the person submits to God’s law, or by whether the person continues to be hostile to God (Rom 8:7), refusing to keep the commandments, especially the Sabbath commandment where a person’s continued hostility to God is most easily observed.
Because Zwingli did not and could not understand spiritual birth, Zwingli marshaled the powers of the State against my ancestors, hounding and hunting Anabaptists of all flavors until these Radical Reformers learned to keep their heads down and become the quiet folk of small sects such as Old German Baptists, Old Order Mennonites, Amish, Hutterites, and the not so quiet Sabbatarians in Adventist and Church of God sects … an outside observer can quickly identify those Christians who remain in theological descent from 16th-Century Radical Reformers by whether the “Christian” participates in the civil governance of the nation in which the “Christian” lives. If the Christian does, the Christian is no longer of the Radical Reformers, but has been persuaded to return to spiritual Babylon where the Christian will serve as canon fodder in the civil war occurring within Babylon’s ruling hierarchy.
Regardless of whether the Christen does or doesn’t participate in civil governance, the Christian will become embroiled in war once the Second Passover occurs. The Christian who then will have the law written on his or her heart will have to choose: spiritual Babylon and the present prince of this world, or the Son of Man. And a choice will be made!
To not mark oneself with Sabbath observance in the post Second Passover world (with keeping the Sabbath being the outward manifestation of believing God) will result in voluntarily marking oneself for death when the kingdom of this world is given to the Son of Man. Thus, after Israel’s liberation from indwelling sin and death, Old Order Mennonites and God-fearing Old German Baptists who have descended from men with whom my fathers fellowshipped will either begin to keep the Sabbath or will mark themselves for death in the lake of fire. The choice will be entirely theirs. I will help them however I can, now and later; for it might well be because of my fathers who listened to Radical Reformers and who by faith turned to God and sought purity in their worship of God that I am here today.
As a young man I did not set out to walk uprightly before God; rather, as a product of my generation—I graduated from high school in 1963—I was in rebellion against all authority, including the social contract of my peers. While I didn’t smoke dope or take LSD or even protest the Vietnam war, I became a poacher, living on the edges of society as if the world were a two-sided coin, one side “us,” the other side “them,” not then knowing that both us and them belong to the Adversary, that only by not playing on the Adversary’s chessboard can a person cease being a pawn manipulated by the Adversary. I sensed rather than understood why a person would choose to be a subsistence farmer, separated as much as possible from the economic and political realities of this world. Without knowing why, I sought that separation as I journeyed as an outbound migrant up the Oregon coast and down along the Alaskan beaches from Kenai to Kodiak to Dutch Harbor before turning around to return to the waters of my nativity.
The one who will become the man of perdition—a human being possessed by the Adversary—will never realize that only by getting off Satan’s board can a Christian escape death; that for as long as the Christian continues as a cog in We the People, the Christian remains condemned to death as a bondservant to the prince of this world. This is what the pacifists of Penn’s Colony [modern Pennsylvania] found out the hard way during the French and Indian War; this is a lesson that was never learned by Americans whose fathers and mothers passed through Ellis Island. … No governing entity can exist in this present world that doesn’t pass through the Adversary, and this includes governing authority within a “Church,” the reason why the fellowships of Philadelphia are only associated in this world by a shared reading strategy.
Zwingli’s exegesis principles hold that every American can read for oneself the U.S. Constitution and can determine if the person’s elected representatives who have sworn to uphold the Constitution are truly doing so. And Zwingli would, if alive today, insist that every true American patriot have a copy of the U.S. Constitution as the Christian has a copy of the Bible that is read daily, and read literally. … The man of perdition, when revealed on day 220 of the Affliction (the first 1260 days of the seven endtime years), will cling to Zwingli’s exegesis principles and to Zwingli’s advocacy for representational democracy.
Americans continue to live by the Christian values and principles that emerged from the pages of Scripture through literal meanings being given to theological texts holding that the visible, physical things of this world reveal the invisible, spiritual things of God (Rom 1:20), with a “literal” reading of Scripture being an oxymoronic expression, for “words” do not come with their meanings attached to them in little backpacks but must have meaning assigned to them by the reader. Thus, every reading of any text is less than literal and only as “meaningful” as the reader is knowledgeable.
In terms of human maturation, as work by Judy S. DeLoache, University of Virginia, Psychology Department, has shown, human children are unable to grasp the concept of dual referents (of one thing representing another thing) earlier than about 30 months of age, but by 36 months of age the concept is almost embarrassing simple. And so it is with sons of God: the Christian who is not able to grasp the concept that the physical things of this world reveal (or represent) the invisible things of God is in terms of spiritual maturity as a human child of less than three years old. The person is not a mature Christian; the person is just barely a toddler—and not even a toddler is the Christian who does not keep the commandments, especially the Sabbath.
Samuel was born of promise … Hannah, the wife of Elkanah, an Ephrathite, was praying to the Lord at Shiloh. Her lips were moving, but she was uttering no sound. Eli the priest thought her drunk, and he brought an accusation against her, “‘How long will you go on being drunk?’” (1 Sam 1:14), but Hannah answered, “‘No, my lord, I am a woman troubled in spirit. I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but I have been pouring out my soul before the Lord’” (v. 15). Eli dismissed her, saying, “‘Go in peace, and the God of Israel grant your petition that you have made to him’” (v 17). Indeed, God did grant her petition in childbirth, the birth of Samuel. Her physical salvation was through the Lord bringing fertility to a womb that He had closed (vv. 5–6).
But Samuel’s sons were of the people through Samuel having the way of a man with a woman. Even though Samuel was the biological father of Joel and of Abijah, his sons were the production of the common people. They were not of promise, nor of God … even though Israel was the firstborn son of the Lord (Ex 4:22), the nation was the product of rebellion against God, rebellion Samuel was experiencing in his sons not walking in his ways, but turning aside justice for personal gain, taking bribes and perverting the way of the Lord.
The people didn’t trust Samuel’s sons to lead them into battle. The example of Eli’s sons was still too near in time. So the people asked for a king rather than trust the Lord to deliver them from the Ammonites, a small thing if the people of Israel had done as Samuel said:
Samuel said to all the house of Israel, “If you are returning to the Lord with all your heart, then put away the foreign gods and the Ashtaroth from among you and direct your heart to the Lord and serve him only, and he will deliver you out of the hand of the Philistines.” So the people of Israel put away the Baals and the Ashtaroth, and they served the Lord only. (1 Sam 7:3–4)
But for how long did the people of Israel put away their idols? A few days, a few weeks, certainly not for more than a few decades; for the people of Israel had returned to idolatry when Samuel was old … in asking for a king, the people of Israel were not rejecting Samuel but the Lord; however, in rejecting the Lord the people were also rejecting Samuel for he represented the Lord. And Samuel was finally getting to see, to experience what the Lord had been seeing all along.
The Lord told Samuel to warn the people about what having a king would mean:
Samuel told all the words of the Lord to the people who were asking for a king from him. He said, “These will be the ways of the king who will reign over you: he will take your sons and appoint them to his chariots and to be his horsemen and to run before his chariots. And he will appoint for himself commanders of thousands and commanders of fifties, and some to plow his ground and to reap his harvest, and to make his implements of war and the equipment of his chariots. He will take your daughters to be perfumers and cooks and bakers. He will take the best of your fields and vineyards and olive orchards and give them to his servants. He will take the tenth of your grain and of your vineyards and give it to his officers and to his servants. He will take your male servants and female servants and the best of your young men and your donkeys, and put them to his work. He will take the tenth of your flocks, and you shall be his slaves. And in that day you will cry out because of your king, whom you have chosen for yourselves, but the Lord will not answer you in that day.” (1 Sam 8:10–18)
The Lord will not answer you in that day (1 Sam 8:18)—when a nation has another king other than the Lord, this king standing before the people in place of the Lord, this king assuming authority that belongs to the Lord, this king being either a blessing or a cursing to the people, the Most High will not respond to the people when the people cry out in anguish because of the evil this king does to the people. And that is the promise the Lord made to Israel through Samuel, a promise He has kept, a promise being kept presently. When American Colonials complained in prayer about the abuses of King George III, the promise the Lord made to Samuel is that He would not answer these prayers. Long before, Israel had chosen a king for themselves, and Israel, Colonial Christians (since Calvary, Israel has been a nation that should be circumcised of heart but wasn’t), would have to live with their “king,” regardless of how insane he was. Colonial Christians were on their own: they were as Rachal was in that the household gods of their father were hidden in their loins … America’s founding fathers, as outwardly pious men, placed necessity before principle: they were—because of their lawlessness—the seed of the Adversary. But that is not how they perceived themselves.
There is a move afoot to make Benjamin Franklin the face of Colonial charity. Indeed, Franklin was a brilliant man, and perhaps the only person in the world able to master the intricacies of the French court without having grown up in or around the royal family. But the face of charity? Perhaps those making this claim should look at his business practices, especially at what he did concerning the Ephrata Cloister, his chief printing rival.
The Cloister was a community of Sabbatarian Brethren that had the second German printing press in the American colonies—and Franklin went to the paper mills in the colonies and “persuaded” these mills not to sell paper to the Cloister, which then had to start its own paper mill to keep its press going.
Ephrata published the largest book printed in Colonial America, Martyrs Mirror, a history of Christian martyrs from the 1st-Century until 1660, no thanks to Franklin and his charitable business ethics. … George Washington confiscated Ephrata’s paper supply when the Continental army ran short of paper for cartridges: two wagonloads of paper were taken from the community, some of the paper the already-printed but unbound pages from the Martyrs’ Mirror. Stories of the pacifist martyrs were used to kill British regulars and Hussein mercenaries.
Of course, when the Revolutionary War began, pacifists—my forefathers, with one exception—became suspicious individuals and were often accused of being disloyal to the Cause even though 25% or more of Pennsylvania’s population were pacifists. The Ephrata Cloister’s leader Peter Miller wrote on 10 October 1776, “We ought to abhor all War, for to subject all Men without Distinction to the Civil Law, is injurious to the Christian Cause, as some may be under a higher Magistrate, and also consequently emancipated from the civil Government. … In the present struggle there is a third Party, who observe a strict Neutrality” (Alderfer, E.G. The Ephrata Commune: An Early American Counterculture. Pittsburgh, PA: U of Pitt Press, 1985. Page 163 — emphasis added).
Were these Sabbatarians traitors? … At the Battle of Brandywine, Continentals under Washington suffered substantial losses: 300 killed, 600 wounded, 400 taken prisoner. Washington ordered that 500 or so of the wounded be transported the 70 miles to Ephrata, where the community was to care for them during the fall and winter. Caring for the wounded soldiers cost Ephrata ten of the community’s own members. But one unnamed officer wrote, “I came among this people by accident, but I left them with regret. … Until I entered the walls of Ephrata, I had no idea of pure and practical Christianity. Not that I was ignorant of the forms, or even the doctrines of religion. I knew it in theory before; I saw it in practice then” (Alderfer 165–166).
Perhaps Ephrata’s leader during the Revolution provides a better example of charity than Franklin: near Ephrata lived Michael Widman, a tavern keeper who detested the Sabbatarians, sometimes harassing them, once even assaulting Miller. During the War, Widman, a Tory, was arrested for treason and sentenced to be hanged … Peter Miller walked sixty miles through snow to Valley Forge where he appealed to Washington to pardon Widman. Washington granted the pardon. And Miller walked an additional fifteen miles to deliver the pardon in time to save Widman, his antagonist, from being executed.
How much honor did Washington display in confiscating printed pages of the Martyrs’ Mirror? Or how much charity did Franklin display in cutting off Ephrata’s supply of paper? Or how much did Samuel Adams display in preaching lawlessness to Christians enslaved in sin?
There is ample historical support for the claim that America’s founding fathers were of the Adversary: again, Peter Miller said that for to subject all Men without Distinction to the Civil Law, is injurious to the Christian Cause, as some may be under a higher Magistrate, and also consequently emancipated from the civil Government. … Consider exactly what Miller said and how his words fly in the face of Zwingli’s teachings. Peter and John answered temple officials, “‘Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you rather than to God, you must judge, for we cannot but speak of what we have seen and heard’” (Acts 4:19–20). Elsewhere Peter and the apostles said to these officials, “‘We must obey God rather that men’” (Acts 5:29).
To be emancipated from civil government does not mean that a Christian transgresses the law, but means the Christian is no longer a slave to sin and no longer participates in the futile warring of men as if these men were dogs in a kennel.
Everyone who makes a practice of sinning also practices lawlessness; sin is lawlessness. … No one who abides in him keeps on sinning; no one who keeps on sinning has either seen him or known him. Little children, let no one deceive you. Whoever practices righteousness is righteous, as he is righteous. Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. … No one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God's seed abides in him, and he cannot keep on sinning because he has been born of God. By this it is evident who are the children of God, and who are the children of the devil: whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is the one who does not love his brother. (1 John 3:4–10 emphasis added)
To break the law in one point, one commandment makes the person a lawbreaker (Jas 2:10); thus, to transgress the Sabbath commandment makes the Christian a lawbreaker, a sinner, with the Christian’s sin not covered by the blood of Christ because of the sinner’s refusal to keep the Passover, or neglect of the Passover. Only through death (by not yet being born of God) can this Christian lawbreaker escape damnation. And out of mercy for those who will become His sons, the Father did not give the spirit—give a second breath of life—to generations of “Christians,” including to such pious men as Zwingli. Therefore, generations of pious scholars and teachers could not understand the mysteries of God. These pious men were limited in understanding to only the meaning[s] they could humanly assigned to the words of Scripture. Until they cleansed their hearts by a journey of faith equivalent to Abraham’s journey of faith before he was circumcised, there would be no inner new self—this inner new self being the son of promise—no inner son of God born of spirit [B<,Ø:"] within them.
Before hearts are cleansed by faith and circumcised by spirit, Christians have to make a journey of faith from spiritual Babylon [equivalent to Abram’s Ur of the Chaldeans] to Haran, the land of Laban, the land representing “death” of the old man through baptism by submersion, then on down to the land of Canaan, with Sabbath-observance forming the boundaries of “life,” the Land Beyond the River. It was not enough for Luther or Zwingli to seek to reform the Roman Church while hiding in their loins the paganism of early Greek converts that was to them as Laban’s household gods were to Rachal, who wasn’t saved in childbirth but died in childbirth, in the birth of the son of her sorrow [Ben-oni] (Gen 35:17–19). Luther and Zwingli died without entering into the Promised Land of God’s rest, represented by the Sabbaths of God (Heb 3:16–4:11; Ps 95:10–11; Num chap 14). And those “Christian patriots” that form the bulk of the modern Tea-Party activists are patriots but they have not been born of God as sons. If they were so born, they would be as 16th-Century Anabaptists were, in that they would avoid politics even at the cost of their physical lives; for it is better to be born of God and circumcised of heart than to gain possession of this world that is passing away.
The Lord will not be mocked. Jacob placed a death sentence on Rachel, the wife he loved most, when he said to Laban, Anyone with whom you find your gods shall not live. And so it is with the greater Christian Church, and with Christian patriots: the stones erected as witnesses against Israel still stand in Scripture.
Do Americans have over them a king? Or have they elected out of their own wisdom and intellect a president and representatives that rule over them not under the rubric of God but rule as agents of the prince of this world? Have these elected representatives taken the sons of Americans to serve in the military? Have these representatives taken a tenth or more of everything the people produce? Are Americans not servants of an overreaching Federal bureaucracy that the nation cannot long afford? But have Americans not also rejected God as sovereign over the nation, if God was ever that sovereign?
The promise made to ancient Israel is that God would no longer answer the people’s complaints about their governance once the people had a king. Rather, God would deal with the nation through the king, with the king’s personage serving as a reflection of the entire nation. This principle is historically seen both in Scripture and in secular history, and this principle is presently at work in every democracy and in every dictatorship in the world. By voting for representatives, the people choose for themselves whom they will serve, with some choices better made than others. Every person is intelligent enough not be believe campaign rhetoric.
Elected politicians seldom have qualms about breaking campaigns promises, and President Obama is no exception. He breaks promises with the same ease as he makes them, but really, is this not to be expected?
If the American electorate was “happy” with the electorate’s vote for President Bush, that electorate will be equally “unhappy” with Obama, such is the way of this world. Both men rule as agents of demonic princes that presently war with each other—
The above is a mystery of God that cannot be understood, let alone accepted by Christian patriots striving to be seen and heard in today’s on-going tax protests. Although it is not difficult to see how President Obama can be an agent for the prince of this world, it is more difficult for these patriots to see how they serve as provocateurs for underling demonic kings, each a prince who will not come into his own until the first king of the spiritual kingdom of Greece is broken at the Second Passover liberation of Israel.
Armed with a literal reading of Scripture, Christian patriots refuse to accept that all authority, whether of a king or of a president or of a prime minister or of We the People, comes through the present prince of this world under whose dominion governance of this world has been consigned until the Lord God has mercy on all of humankind. Accepting that all authority, totalitarian or democratic, has been given to the spiritual king of Babylon is simply too difficult of a concept for patriotic Christians to embrace. And it is here where we will have to leave any patriotic Christian who has traveled this far from Zwingli’s literal exegesis.
The issue of whether governing authorities were of God and whether We the People have the theological basis for getting rid of a king was [sort-of] resolved for English colonists in the English civil war, where, following Charles’ abolishing of Parliament in 1629 and eleven years of personal rule, the absolute rights of monarchs came under challenge for economic and theological reasons, thus beginning the first of two civil wars. He failed to defeat the armies of the Puritan Parliament in the field and surrendered in 1646 to the Scots, hoping for favor. But a second civil war ensued, and without options, the Scots turned Charles over to Parliament where in 1648, he was brought to trial in Westminster Hall before 135 judges … the matter of whether We the People had the right to take the life of a king charged with treason was not easily decided, and was even more divisive than whether an impeached president of the United States should be removed from office.
Charles I was found guilty of treason by a vote of 68 yeas, 67 nays; and on 30 January 1649, he was beheaded.
The beheading of Charles I was closer in time and memory to America’s foundering fathers than the American Civil War is to Tea Party patriots.
For America’s founding fathers, the issue of whether to submit to a king or remove a king was in a literal reading of, “For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad” (Rom 13:3) … if a ruler became a terror to good conduct, the ruler was not of God and had not authority to rule. But all of this comes from Zwingli’s reading of Scripture, with Zwingli’s theology manifesting itself in the writings of John Calvin.
This world (including America) is presently being ruled by warring demonic princes that strive against each other for control of the mental topography of living creatures, and the Lord is neither hearing nor answering the people who complain about the authority that has been placed over them, the promise made to the people of Israel when they asked for a king. The Lord has plans that are in play and that will shortly become evident. Until then, He is taking (has taken) a hands-off approach to human governance. Therefore, by returning to the democratic purity of Korah’s rebellion, Christian patriots will not cause the Lord to hear the people. Only by returning to the Lord, only by returning to a state of no national governance [which won’t happen, nor should happen in this present era] will the Lord begin to hear the voice of the people—anarchy is not the answer though anarchy is the ultimate expression of democracy where everyone does what is right in his [or her] eyes (Judges 21:25).
Wait a minute: if Israel should not return to when no national governance existed (the era of the judges), how can the people protect themselves from an overreaching regime such as presently rules the United States? And here is where understanding that Zwingli never had is necessary: as said before, Israel is today a nation circumcised of heart. It is the nation of inner new selves that received life through receipt of the breath of God. It is not a physical nation. It is not the United States of America, or the modern State of Israel. It is the Christian Church, and no king but Christ Jesus should be ruling over this nation. Therefore, endtime Israel is a nation within a nation as ancient Israel was an outwardly circumcised nation within the uncircumcised nation of Egypt. So what the outer nation does—what Egypt did while Moses was tending sheep—is really not the concern of Christians, who answer to a higher Magistrate, and [have been] consequently emancipated from the civil Government.
For Christian patriots to make American affairs their affairs, these Christians make themselves agents of the spiritual king of Babylon … there is scriptural precedent for Christian participation in the affairs of this world, but that precedent runs through Rachel to her firstborn son, Joseph, who was sold into slavery in Egypt:
· The Christian who participates in the affairs of this world is not a “free” person but is a slave of the spiritual king of Babylon as Joseph was a slave—
· Joseph’s robe of many colors that his brothers stripped from him when they took him captive has significance as ideological mindsets, the pluralism seen in the 1st-Century Church that was stripped from it by converted Greek philosophers;
· Therefore, Joseph’s time with Potiphar becomes analogous to the favor granted to the 4th-Century Church by Constantine;
· Joseph’s confinement in the king’s prison becomes analogous to the centuries when Christians were imprisoned by the dogmas of the Universal Church,
· But throughout Joseph’s imprisonment, the Lord was with Joseph (Gen 39:21) even though the Lord chose not to free Joseph.
· When Joseph comes to Pharaoh’s attention through interpreting the symbolism of Pharaoh’s dream—the dream did not lend itself to a literal reading—the Pharaoh does not give Joseph his freedom, but makes Joseph second to himself in authority.
Joseph became the personal slave of the Pharaoh, a slave upon whom great favor was bestowed but nonetheless a bondservant who was given a job and the authority necessary to do the job. And yes, in Egypt at this time, seven fat years were followed by seven lean years, with the cows and ears representing years … Christians don’t think of Joseph remaining a slave after Pharaoh gave him authority second only to the Pharaoh’s. For some reason, Christians assume Joseph became a free man, able to return to his father, when Joseph was elevated in authority.
After the magicians of Egypt and all of the nation’s wise men could not interpret Pharaoh’s dream, the chief cupbearer to Pharaoh tells the Pharaoh that “‘we dreamed on the same night, he [the baker] and I, each having a dream with its own interpretation. A young Hebrew was there with us, a servant of the captain of the guard. When we told him, he interpreted our dreams to us, giving an interpretation to each man according to his dream. And as he interpreted to us, so it came about’” (Gen 41:11–13 emphasis added).
Upon hearing the words of his cupbearer, the Pharaoh had Joseph brought out from the pit, had him shaved and given a change of clothes, and had him brought into his presence (Gen 41:14). But Joseph was still the servant of, or slave of Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh, the captain of the guard. Christian patriots at today’s Tea-Party rallies really don’t think in terms of men owning other men as if men were beasts of burden; yet America’s founding fathers thought in those terms, with some rejecting the idea and with some being slaveholders.
America’s founding fathers were honorable slaves of sin.
When the people of Israel asked for a king, Saul, son of Kish, a man of Benjamin, was chosen to be their king. According to instructions from the Lord, Samuel anointed Saul to be prince over Israel.
But Samuel was not happy about the entire course of events:
“Behold, I have obeyed your [Israel’s] voice in all that you have said to me and have made a king over you. And now, behold, the king walks before you, and I am old and gray; and behold, my sons are with you. I have walked before you from my youth until this day. Here I am; testify against me before the Lord and before his anointed. Whose ox have I taken? Or whose donkey have I taken? Or whom have I defrauded? Whom have I oppressed? Or from whose hand have I taken a bribe to blind my eyes with it? Testify against me and I will restore it to you.” They said, “You have not defrauded us or oppressed us or taken anything from any man's hand.” And he said to them, “The Lord is witness against you, and his anointed is witness this day, that you have not found anything in my hand.” And they said, “He is witness.” (1 Sam 12:1–5)
The problem of governance, the problem that the people of Israel had with being governed by judges lay entirely within the people of Israel—as Samuel said, My sons are with you, a people that never ceased serving sticks and stones, cast metal gods and superstitions. The people never obeyed the voice of the Lord; so in return for the people’s unfaithfulness, the Lord allowed unfaithful and contemptible judges to rule over them. Before Samuel, Eli’s sons had corrupted the office of judge, with the holder of this office being the representative of the Lord. Although no fault was found with Samuel whose heart was pure, generations would pass between judges such as himself; for Samuel’s sons were like Eli’s sons.
Again—and this cannot be stressed enough—the problem of governance wasn’t with God, and is never with God. The problem is that the people get the governance they deserve:
Samuel said to the people, “The Lord is witness, who appointed Moses and Aaron and brought your fathers up out of the land of Egypt. Now therefore stand still that I may plead with you before the Lord concerning all the righteous deeds of the Lord that he performed for you and for your fathers. When Jacob went into Egypt, and the Egyptians oppressed them, then your fathers cried out to the Lord and the Lord sent Moses and Aaron, who brought your fathers out of Egypt and made them dwell in this place. But they forgot the Lord their God. And he sold them into the hand of Sisera, commander of the army of Hazor, and into the hand of the Philistines, and into the hand of the king of Moab. And they fought against them. And they cried out to the Lord and said, ‘We have sinned, because we have forsaken the Lord and have served the Baals and the Ashtaroth. But now deliver us out of the hand of our enemies, that we may serve you.’ And the Lord sent Jerubbaal and Barak and Jephthah and Samuel and delivered you out of the hand of your enemies on every side, and you lived in safety. And when you saw that Nahash the king of the Ammonites came against you, you said to me, ‘No, but a king shall reign over us,’ when the Lord your God was your king. And now behold the king whom you have chosen, for whom you have asked; behold, the Lord has set a king over you. If you will fear the Lord and serve him and obey his voice and not rebel against the commandment of the Lord, and if both you and the king who reigns over you will follow the Lord your God, it will be well. But if you will not obey the voice of the Lord, but rebel against the commandment of the Lord, then the hand of the Lord will be against you and your king. Now therefore stand still and see this great thing that the Lord will do before your eyes. Is it not wheat harvest today? I will call upon the Lord, that he may send thunder and rain. And you shall know and see that your wickedness is great, which you have done in the sight of the Lord, in asking for yourselves a king.” So Samuel called upon the Lord, and the Lord sent thunder and rain that day, and all the people greatly feared the Lord and Samuel. (1 Sam 12:6–18 emphasis and double emphasis added)
Pause and consider what it means that the Lord would wash out the wheat harvest on the day of the harvest … the two grain harvests of Israel represent the harvest of firstfruits at Christ’s return, the barley harvest, and the main crop wheat harvest when Death and Hades are thrown into the lake of fire at the great White Throne Judgment. Every person born of woman is of one or the other harvest.
Israel’s wickedness is great, and no one should be surprised “‘when all who are in the tombs will hear [the Son of Man’s] voice and come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment’” (John 5:28–29); for the Lord will wipe out, as if the people were ripe wheat beaten down by hard rain, all who do wickedly.
[T]he people said to Samuel, “Pray for your servants to the Lord your God, that we may not die, for we have added to all our sins this evil, to ask for ourselves a king.” And Samuel said to the people, “Do not be afraid; you have done all this evil. Yet do not turn aside from following the Lord, but serve the Lord with all your heart. And do not turn aside after empty things that cannot profit or deliver, for they are empty. For the Lord will not forsake his people, for his great name's sake, because it has pleased the Lord to make you a people for himself. Moreover, as for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord by ceasing to pray for you, and I will instruct you in the good and the right way. Only fear the Lord and serve him faithfully with all your heart. For consider what great things he has done for you. But if you still do wickedly, you shall be swept away, both you and your king.” (1 Sam 12:19–25 emphasis added)
If you, Israel, the nation that is circumcised of heart, do wickedly you shall be swept away as a field of grain is washed out by a thunder storm … that is the promise of Scripture. All of the good things, the plans the Lord has for Israel for wholeness and not for evil (Jer 29:11) will not come to pass if Israel transgresses the commandments and adds to the nation’s sin of self-determination by not serving the Lord with heart and mind.
America’s founding fathers compounded their transgressions by incorporating the lawless Christian clergy into their rebellion—
In Israel asking for a king, then again in Christianity asking for an emperor [from the late 1st-Century to the 4th-Century, Christians asked to be protected first from the Roman Emperor, then by the Emperor], both ancient Israel and the early Christian Church practiced wickedness before God … in the early Church, persecuted Christians were beaten down as if they were ripe wheat is in a thunderstorm. This persecution was permitted by the Father and the Son, but was it more than simply permitted? Could the unthinkable to true? Was God, through persecution, showing His anger at the lawlessness of the early Church that left Paul; that left John; that tampered with Jesus’ gospel; that introduced Greek paganism into Church dogmas? Was persecution of the early Church a deliberate thunderstorm knocking down newly emerged wheat?
Whereas Israel recognized its sin in asking for a king when Samuel made the nation’s sin apparent, Christians did not recognize theirs but rather assigned all that happened to them to the workings of the Adversary, with the Emperor himself during the reign of Nero being of the Adversary. Christians in the poor instruction they received from their teachers did not realize that they, like the nation of Israel that left Egypt, never put away the idols and detestable things of this world, but “baptized” these icons of paganism and pronounced them Christian without realizing that when mingling the sacred with the profane, the sacred does not make the profane holy but the profane does defile the sacred.
Under Zwingli, 16th-Century Reformers sought to write a new Swiss constitution that reflected the principles of representational democracy: in the 16th-Century Switzerland was a confederacy of thirteen cantons with representation somewhat analogous to the U.S. Senate. What Zwingli and the Zurich Canton attempted to do to break the voting power of the more sparsely populated five Forest Cantons was to use “law” for political advantage … America’s thirteen colonies used law for political advantage, choosing not to confer statehood to the State of Franklin despite seven of the original thirteen states voting in favor of admission to the Confederacy—legendary Davy Crockett was born in the State of Franklin. But North Carolina, after giving the land to the federal government, wanted the land back, and Franklin, without a currency or economic infrastructure or military, was put into a no-win position; for the Colonial Confederacy in 1785–86 did not need an additional “southern” state.
The Christianity of America’s founding fathers became the foreground for a historical reenactment of the drama ancient Israel underwent when the people asked for a king because of the people’s lack of faith in God being to act for their good through corrupt agents. America asked for “freedom,” for representational democracy when Colonial Christians were not free but were bondservants of sin.
If Christ is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow, then the early Church had the same obligation to serve the Lord with all their heart as Israel had in Samuel’s day; the same obligation not to turn aside and go after empty things that do not profit disciples, nor deliver disciples from damnation. And the lawless clergy in the 18th-Century functioned as agents of the Adversary as they rallied enslaved Christians to lay the foundation for themselves to be six-tenths of a person … the Confederate States of America have long felt that the fundamental struggle for liberty was only in a long recess, and that might well prove to be the case when God, at the Second Passover, gives life and liberty to all who profess to be Christian. The challenge then will be to not respond to provocation as Colonial Christians responded not so long ago, but to roll with the persecution, understanding that God will not be mocked but will avenge those who suffer for righteousness. He will make a short work of taking down the prince of this world; of bringing America and every other nation to their knees.
Tax protests on this day or on any other day will not cause God to act before it is time. He simply is not hearing the complaints of those who beseech His favor in returning America to what it was.
* * *
"Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved."
* * * * *