Moral Complexities

It is a real challenge to stick to a heart-led conviction and wade through the mass of lies. For those of us still learning how to live by divine conviction, seeking to shake off generations of false religious teaching with false moral values, we need a lot of time in prayer and contemplation to catch up. I encourage you to get close to Creation and learn to hear the voice of God in communion with unfallen nature. Learn to pray and worship outdoors in relatively wild settings; get used to just sitting and absorbing that personal moral truth of God’s character. It’s not so much a matter of pristine untouched wilderness — though that is good if you can find it — but a place where the normal noise of human traffic is far enough away that you can hear the sound of nature singing the praises of God.

And then, I encourage you to keep that thrumming song of glory alive when your human responsibilities pull you away from those moments. Stay heart-led; keep an ear on your convictions. This is how we overcome our own sinful tendencies. This is how we restore justice to as much dominion as God grants us individually.

This way, you’ll be in a position to understand when I tell you that a critical element in divine justice is living in that tribal social structure. While it may mean blood kinship, the real point is covenant kinship. That business of shared covenant is the core of divine justice in this fallen world. This is why I characterize shalom as “social stability” — you cannot possibly have genuine social stability any other way than to elevate the covenant to the status of divine law in your thinking.

Of course, we never lose sight of the vast difference between our world of divine justice versus the world around us. Our lives are characterized by the eternal conflict between what is versus what ought to be. We do not control the outcomes; we can just barely control the process within ourselves. Adam — symbolizing our fallen nature — is like a zombie that won’t stay dead, won’t stay nailed to the Cross (Galatians 2:20). We should hardly be surprised that the world around us lives like moral zombies.

I don’t expect the world to understand this kind of talk. It’s not just the way I use language, but the whole thing rests on a moral awareness that only God can give. Instead, I have to speak to the world just a few things that represent their best interests in terms they could understand if they wanted. Instead of talking about the tribal covenant orientation, I refer to nationalism. Whatever bad things might come with that, it’s far better than what comes with other political agendas. If I can persuade men to embrace a nationalist agenda, it’s about as close as they’ll get to social stability and God’s divine blessings.

We are not going to escape death in this world. It’s not what God intended for us, but now it’s the only way out of this mess. But as noted in my previous reference to Galatians 2:20, we can choose death before we actually die. We can sacrifice our sinful nature and God will grant us a trans-dimensional awareness that means we get some kind of taste of the Tree of Life. We face the Flaming Sword at the entrance to Eden and use it on ourselves; it accomplishes the same moral purpose that way. So we become aware of things we can’t really expect to experience in our fallen existence. We see not just the conflict, but the full meaning of the conflict. We can discern the nature of things and characterize for others a vision, a path that leads them somewhat closer to that Flaming Sword. We tell them to embrace nationalism and already know that it means people have to bleed and die. We understand that the Canaanites had to be slaughtered or God could not bless Israel in the Conquest.

A lot of Israeli warriors didn’t quite have that deep moral vision of the Covenant, but they did have a certain useful bloodlust. Humans have a capacity for violence and it’s just plain goofy to suggest that violence is inherently sinful. It has its place in the fallen world. Don’t try to overly analyze this with your reasoning; God commanded His people to destroy and kill because it was part of His inscrutable plans. The problem was that Israel got lazy about it; it’s the sin of Adam in eating the Forbidden Fruit. Fighting moral evil is a dirty job and Adam had competing interests to distract him. He should have attacked the Devil. And Israel failed to bring God’s wrath against the Canaanites in full measure. That violent human tendency does have a godly purpose, but it requires some strong preparation to see what’s the real threat that needs killing instead of seeking fleshly convenience.

Don’t ask me why God would desire whole portions of humanity to die in their sins. This the world in which we live. It’s sad to see so much potential lost that way, but the real problem is our moral blindness. Our intellect is arrogant and imagines it could find a way to redeem those folks and make them more useful. As if we could succeed where God has closed the door…

We aren’t living in a society that embraces the Covenant of Noah, and I’m not appointed by God to take political leadership. I’m not going to tell you whom you should go and kill with any kind of moral authority from God. Rather, I’ll tell you that the question of using violence is valid under Biblical Law; it’s a valid question for those who follow Christ. But you have to get with God and know for yourself what He wants. We don’t listen to the shrill false morality of our society because it stands on a false moral approach to everything. It flies in the face of God and His revelation; it makes the State your god and demands you do violence only at government behest. Some of you reading this will, in the near future, be confronted with moments when violence is God’s will for you, never mind what government says. I’m utterly convinced I will face those moments. God can redeem our bloodlust, too.

For the rest of humanity in our current American political context, I would say that violence against the likes of the Antifas is justified. But I would also say don’t get lost in that. You may need to save some for the real threat: the globalists behind the Antifas. Do you honestly imagine those folks will peacefully surrender their political power? They are the ones funding the Antifas. Sure, wait for them to force your hand — they will. They most certainly would not hesitate to kill you as a simple matter of convenience.

Would you rather we just keep going in the same muddled direction where the plutocrats plunder everyone of everything? How bad does it have to hurt before you act? If you want to stop the oppression, the path is to take down the globalists first, then the imperialists — the former is shielding the latter. As the linked article notes, there will come a time when the imperialists will send out fake Antifas to keep you distracted from attacking the imperialist agenda. So while you have a little fun punching out the Antifas, don’t get confused about the real threat.

In the end, the thing you imagine you are protecting or recovering will lie shattered on the ground. In the back of your minds, realize that the system as come to an end already, and it’s time for you to build something new once you have broken the plutocrat power over you.

Europeans: I can’t help you much. The globalists own you already; God has delivered your countries into their hands. Your lands are already swamped with implacable foes and your future is lost. The Islamic conquest fended off in 732 at the Battle of Tours has now been embraced by your political elite. You folks will have to find your own answers. The tide cannot be turned back now. You’ll need to learn violence merely to survive on a daily level. God help you.

For those of us who walk the heart-led way, don’t get trapped in political concerns. Learn to recognize what’s happening and be ready to exploit the opportunities for Christ’s glory.

Not Against Flesh and Blood

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the world’s rulers, of the darkness of this age, against spiritual wickedness in high places. (Ephesians 6:12 MKJV)

For us, the whole point is the glory of God. Nothing else we might evoke can do so much for us in return. The glory of Christ is our greatest benefit. This is why we say Biblical Law is its own reward; walking in that divine justice is His glory. We enter into His glory where it stands waiting for us.

The only enemy in this endeavor is yourself. Granted, there are lot of folks with varying agendas and interests who see us as a problem in their pursuits, but they are not our problem in return. It is their influence on our choices that is the problem. We have to shut down their entryways into our lives. And for added emphasis, their interests and agendas are sourced in the Devil, so it really doesn’t matter what they believe they want. The problem for you and I is the influence that pushes us anywhere but divine justice and Christ’s glory.

The system in which we live — culture, custom, society, law and government — favors anything and everything except the glory of Christ. Sometimes it helps us understand when we can see particular trends in the system. If you can form an image of what powers the system, and how it keeps people under control, you can discern how Biblical Law is the escape hatch.

There is no single agenda that controls our world. There are multiple agendas, overlapping, competing, and running in parallel. Here is just one example; it is truth disguised as fiction. It represents the global bankster interests, but there are others working at the same time. Conspiracy theories are partly true, but all of the various agendas together are a distraction. There’s nothing wrong with studying them if it’s part of your calling. What I can tell you is that, as I study each one, the one most effective response is always the same thing: Biblical Law. The best way to stay out from under their controls is doing the one thing that we should most enjoy by moral instinct.

Further, there is a certain holy delight in watching their systems crash in the face of God’s glory. We aren’t interested in causing pain, but we can’t prevent their chosen sorrows as God rips their plans to shreds. Instead, we get to laugh about how their demonic ideas don’t produce all the fine things they thought they wanted. It’s amusing to see arrogance deflated that way. Further, it’s such a joy to know that what we do will outlive every system that arises from sinful human imagination.

It’s not so much that we could bring them down as if we were activists and insurgents. We aren’t fighting them in that sense. By clinging to God’s Word, we more often simply slip through evil hands. Biblical Law frustrates their plans to rule us. Particularly in recent centuries do they fail, where systems of control rest on manipulation and deception, herding us into things that serve their interests. While these recent trends are very efficient in herding the bulk of humanity, a heart-led life of seeking Christ’s glory makes us pull away from their virtual chains.

Best of all, we are the hardest target for direct persecution. Together we are like a mist; no weapon can touch us. The one thing that gives us our shared identity exists independently of any of us. Because it is rooted outside this universe, no two of us here will manifest the same profile. About the only concrete trait we share is our fondness for each other, and that’s based on the divine love of Christ. This thing doesn’t depend on any one of us; there is no key figure in this world to keep it alive. It lives on its own.

God has granted us a unique opportunity in these times to shine for Him. Let’s not waste His precious gift, but work while the sun is shining.

04 The Lost Heritage

After completing the full loop around Draper Lake today, I stopped off at Daniel’s Hill. Removing my helmet and facing into the wind, I prayed aloud.

“Lord, I’m grateful for the way You have carried me through all the long journey to discover the vast riches of Your shalom. But it shouldn’t have to be that hard. How did we get like this? How was it that the churches surrendered so quickly and easily after the First Century? Is there some way we can make this thing more painfully obvious and provide a better hedge? And Lord, can we please include more people in this rich heritage of Your blessings in this life?”

Two things stick out in my mind: The Laws of Noah and heart-led living. I was teaching Noah years ago, and before that I was teaching how convictions in your heart are written by God and should reign over your reason. Convictions look just like the Law Covenants (Deuteronomy 30:11-14).

There is nothing legalistic in the Law Covenants. Legalism is something you have to bring to the Law, usually because of the influence of Hellenism. Both Moses and Noah are inherently mystical in tone. Anyone living at the time they were published would have presumed them a parabolic image of something far deeper. Both of them presume you are living from your heart. So if you walk in Christ, it’s going to look like Noah. And Moses is a particular instance of Noah, so the promised blessings are the same for both.

Thus, if you are living in communion with Creation through God’s Spirit, nobody really has to explain why you might, for example refuse to eat meat that hasn’t been properly drained of its blood. It’s a matter of reverence for the life in Creation. Draining the blood before eating meat is a symbol of that communion we all have with Creation. Blood is life and we offer it back to God who gave it as covering for our fallen nature. People in tune with Creation and Christ don’t consume blood as food, not intentionally.

But it’s not a nit-picky rule or law; it’s a symbol, a parable of truth.

If we are to build a genuine parallel society, we have to manifest a common departure from Western moral mythology. For at least the past two years I’ve been steadily trying to contrast Noah from Western assumptions. That most of Western Christianity adheres to the false, heathen moral assumptions of the West only complicates our message. So we have to distinguish ourselves from mainstream Christians, too.

Hellenism is the root of Western intellectual traditions. Aristotle was a key element in Hellenism, and he assumed that humanity has always been like this. Indeed, he figured that gods would be just as morally weak as humans. There is no room in Hellenism for the notion of the Fall, because Scripture posits a world aside from this world. The Bible teaches that it wasn’t like this in Eden, that we weren’t made for this. Jehovah, unlike the pagan deities of Greece and others, is morally perfect, the definition of moral truth. We know that we shall never experience that moral purity directly in this life, but we will become aware of it in rich living detail through our hearts.

But Aristotle’s assumption about human nature rears its head in some smaller Christian denominations (Jehovah’s Witnesses deny the Fall, for example). Most Westerners are convinced the only hope is asserting the power of reason over our whole being. Thus, regardless of what they may say, they all act as if the human reason isn’t fallen. Therefore, becoming less worldly to them means becoming merely more cerebral. All you need is a better content in your head and your own power to live by your reason. So legalism is entirely natural for them, because it constitutes a call to better knowledge and better performance. It doesn’t work too well.

Western Christians don’t have a lot of genuine shalom. We need to show them what it is and where it comes from. I’m hoping that we can present a fairly consistent witness that restores the heritage of faith to those Christ calls to spiritual life. We should naturally join with nature in crying out for someone to please ditch the false assumptions about faith and reality and join us in this eternal celebration of God’s glory.

They Could, But Won’t

Judah didn’t have to face exile in Babylon. Even after all their many failures, slipping into idolatry, they could have settled into their punishment at God’s hand by serving Babylon quietly. Jeremiah said as much, but the Judean leadership kept trying to play politics with Egypt, playing her off against Babylon.

By the same token, I will tell you that the Democrats in the US can still recover and win the public over to their side. But it won’t happen, for much the same reason that Judah kept rebelling against Babylon: They refuse divine wisdom.

Listen to your heart for a moment. What happens to Christians who don’t pull their conscious awareness up into their heart-minds? This has no effect on their eternal destiny, but they will completely miss out on the heritage of faith in this life. You cannot truly walk with Christ without your heart in ascendancy in your soul. On the other hand, you can walk in your heart’s wisdom without Christ. The difference is that, in the latter case, you miss out on the direct revelation of the Holy Spirit. Thus, you can still discern what’s wise according to the moral fabric of the universe, but you won’t really know God and you won’t have that prophetic edge in your planning.

On the one hand, I’ve warned repeatedly that God is brought His wrath on the USA. I’ve gone to great lengths to explain why, but the point here is that a critical element in that path of wrath is that there will be a right-wing backlash. The right-wing instincts will serve as God’s tool, just as Babylon’s conquering lust was God’s tool against Judah. Except that America is not a covenant nation, so we don’t get any of the benefits of covenant protection. So there is a sense in which America as we know it will be destroyed, displaced by something else. It won’t matter whether Americans notice; it will be so. Wise hearts will see it clearly.

But the plan includes executing the wrath of God through the mass movement led by folks with a right-wing orientation. Let’s review just a moment what that means. The American right-wing is moved by “rule of law” or playing by the rules. It’s process-oriented. The left-wing is moved by fairness in terms of outcomes. In both cases the self-conscious orientation has been provoked to a fever pitch, so that most of the activists on both sides are more truculent and harsh than would normally be the case otherwise. People aren’t normally that stupid. So the mood of the nation in terms of the current drift of what shall dominate events is a vengeful rule-of-law.

By “rule of law” we are not referring to existing legal policy, but a broader myth of what law ought to be in a libertarian-leaning Enlightenment philosophy about liberty. Thus, the current majority-in-effect in America has been rubbed raw by legal policy that has turned a tiny minority into a privileged class. There’s nothing inherently unwise about identity politics, but there is something wrong with punishing today’s majority for the sins of their forefathers. It’s this passion for retribution that is entirely foolish. This is what has brought about the current political climate, in which the right-wing is utterly and spitefully deaf to anything the left has to say.

Had the leadership of the Democrats truly intended to rule, they would not have pandered to the whiny by creating a new predatory ruling class. The current established leadership at the DNC doesn’t give a damn about justice; they are race baiting, gender pampering, and looking for any excuse to stir up a false fury and vengeance. That’s where the plunder is. Had they attacked the real root of the problems they care about, their fortunes would have been much better at this point. The issue is winning the hearts and minds of folks without stirring up hatred. It requires backing off the absolutism of those seeking to plunder the existing social order, but suggesting policies that move the majority without implacable demands for specific outcomes.

But it takes a prophetic guidance in the heart to know that the Republicans don’t have to reform right now; they are in control because they have courted this core movement that has suffered too much at the hands of outcomes-based retribution. It wasn’t the wisdom of the Republican Party leadership, but the bulldozing of someone who refuses to play by their customary procedures. In other words, the Republicans harvest the benefit of something they really didn’t want. It remains to be seen where this unsettled context leads, but that is really not critical to what God is doing in His wrath. The bulldozer in the Oval Office is just a focal point of what God is doing, not the center of action. That action is in the field distributed across the country. The true threat to the left is the sheer power and dominance of the majority-in-effect that Democrats refuse to court.

So here is the prophetic point of this: Stop thinking and acting as if the Republicans and the President matter. They are symptoms of God’s wrath, not the substance of what He is doing. If you want to know what’s going on, get your news from the social media. Get a feel for where this mass of very unhappy rigth-wingers are going; their agenda is where God has ordained His wrath. It is not where He has set His blessings. This compares favorably with the situation in Jeremiah’s day. If you can embrace the prophetic warning, you are in a position to let your heart’s wisdom make the most of a bad situation. The right-wing movement is Babylon in ascendance. The left-wing is the slimy deception from Egypt. In due time both of them will be crushed by other forces.

It dosen’t matter if folks have leftist outcomes-based morals or right-wing process-based morals; they can’t keep listening to predatory leadership if they expect to harvest God’s promised blessings. The poltical wrangling matters not; we need a heart-led awareness to do anything that does matter.

Utopian Madness

We saw it coming.

Just to remind you, several of you agreed with me that we could all sense a shift in reality, that God changed His plans for us. Because there were a number of us who rediscovered the heart-led life, and because we made it a conscious teaching, it opened the door for options He had previously kept back. Among other things, those options include a collection of blessings, miracles, signs and wonders in a way not seen on the earth in a very long time. This was all His initiative; we receive the blessings because we took Him up on His offer. He was looking for someone — anyone — who would seize this fabulous heritage of faith, and there is far more for each of us than we could ever understand.

From the Exodus we learn how God can distinguish His own from the rest of humanity, because we have the Blood of the Lamb on our coming and going. The image of that sacrificial blood daubed on the door-posts hearkens to embracing His mercy on our sins. The death from rejecting His ways will not invade our lives. He has broken the Curse that blinds us to His ways and His blessings. It releases a flood of power in our lives, protecting us from the zombie existence that consumes those who reject God’s ways.

Part of the signs and wonders of His covenant promise is the polarity that makes things obvious, in order to show His glory. The polarity is that some of us can discern this vast shift in the moral sphere and have some idea what to expect, whereas the rest of humanity runs smack face-first into this shift in reality. Not so we can laugh, but it is so we can see the high cost of sin. It’s so we can see His hand of wrath and bear testimony to what we see. And while it always comes with a deniability factor for those who are morally blind, we cling to the truth revealed in our hearts. We refuse to limit ourselves to a viewpoint that ignores the moral sphere. We choose what others call “delusion” in order to come face to face with the Lamb of God.

So now we see the inevitable madness that comes with that shift in reality. Now that it is possible for people to learn and understand heart-led living, it is also mandatory for living here on this earth. For some time in human history, the heart-led way was lost to broad human awareness. A system arose that excluded it; that time is ended. Whatever system God permitted during that time is no longer applicable. A more fundamental element of Noah’s Covenant is again available, ransomed from Satan on some grounds we cannot comprehend, but it’s out there and it applies. Without the heart-mind consciousness, without a sense of walking in your convictions, the world will seem to have become warped and unreliable versus previously seeming reliable in some ways.

Because we are a virtual parish, a big part of what we can teach and do is here on the Internet. If you’ve been paying attention, you probably have seen all kinds of bogus claims. I’m not talking about people who have always been out there on the fringe; I’m referring to the mainstream starting to spew the craziest nonsense. It’s not just mere propaganda meant to mislead, but the wildest airy-fairy perversions that these people actually believe. They come up with the most improbable explanations for things they cannot account for under normal mainstream expectations. It’s no longer just the usual partisan bickering any more, though it still includes that. It’s not just the obvious moral degradations. The Net is dominated by mentally unhinged wacko proposals for explaining what’s happening.

It helps if you are conscious of your own social biases. We all have them. I tend to be libertarian, perhaps in some ways almost theoretically anarchist, only because I know that current political systems are so horribly wrong. And nobody proposes what God requires under Noah. Some of you, given what you have on your blogs, are quite progressive, perhaps even socialist or communist, though I hope you don’t buy into the materialist assumptions behind a lot of that. Being lefty doesn’t make you my enemy; I’m against some of the same wrongs. There’s room for all of us in this parish, because God calls people with varying missions that make us naturally favor organizing things in ways that seem to resemble one or another political theory. My point is that we dare not take ourselves too seriously. We must be able to recognize who we are and never assume our way is the one right way of God.

What’s left is to recognize what God is up to, and most assuredly we need to see what He is allowing to happen for reasons we could never comprehend. Our Lord is allowing the political globalists to be crushed. He is allowing a right-wing backlash in a lot of countries. It’s going to look and feel racist to some of you, but don’t get the idea that it has to be stopped on those grounds. God has ordered Satan to execute a lot of punishment, to loose the hounds of recompense for sin. Surely we who walk by the heart know that a lot of noise about “racism” misses the point, that the only real solution is one-on-one. You cannot simply wish away the Curse of the Fall. You also cannot dream up your own solutions to human problems.

The only solution to the madness is embracing the heart-led existence. This is our message to the crazy world around us. This is how we discern the pitiful attempts to explain reality gone wrong. It’s wrong because people keep proposing all kinds of answers when they don’t even understand the problems. Utopian myths never die until they are killed by wisdom of the heart.

And we can see clearly that it’s only going to get worse.

Jehovah Jireh

The preacher is a little angry. Perhaps you’ll see it as a holy fire, not petty spite.

Everything we do is provider-centric. Read that a couple of times and let it sink in. We’ll come back to it.

When your average church or religious organization plans it’s various human activities in pursuit of the gospel message, chances are that the whole thing is deeply infected with human reason. Granted, reason is how we get things organized, but reason has to follow the heart. And how many churches do you know about that teach the heart-led way?

Stop and think about that. In my personal journey, long before I stumbled across the concept of heart-led living, I was already trying to implement it using terminology I had been taught in religious college. Back then, I referred to it as “conviction” and spoke of how it’s something implanted in your soul by God. The image I used was a bedrock of our existence, and how that was the bedrock of commitment to Christ. It comes from God, not from anything we can do. And I taught that God wrote with His finger in that bedrock something unique to us as individuals He Created for His glory. Our first duty was to discern what was written there, in part by pulling away the rubble that God didn’t put there. I suggested that, for most of us, it was several layers deep.

You should have seen how much Hell I caught from religious leaders for that. While the particulars they picked over varied, I could tell there was something fundamental about it that they rejected. At some point, I began to understand that it was a threat to religious leadership itself. These people had a vested interest in maintaining a system that was forced to deny that teaching. It happened in several different Protestant denominations.

When I discovered that the heart was quite literally a sensory organ in itself, something measurable with scientific instruments, a lot of things fell into place. Slowly I realized that the scientific works was misguided, but served to illustrate something that science could never understand, anyway. Never mind the physical realities of the heart; the heart is a symbol with deep traditions in the Ancient Near East, and particularly appears in the Bible. I already knew from biblical scholarship that Hebrew people regarded the heart as the metaphorical seat of the “will” — a term that roughly equates to conviction. At that point, I understand a lot of Hebrew imagery that never made sense before.

For all their talk of the “priesthood of the believer,” the American Protestant religion remains deeply centralized. Sure, you are free believe what drives you, but you can’t hang around with your church family in any meaningful way unless you toe the line of orthodoxy. I’ve had enough of religious leaders enjoying my talents while putting chains on me within “their ministry” so I didn’t weaken their authority.

So if someone tells me that this or that expert on something is “Spirit led,” it really tells me more about the one saying it than it does about the expert. Have you noticed how that works? “So-n-so is a deeply spiritual, man of God” — whose teaching just happens to keep the speaker in power. Whatever happened to the man of God wholly willing to surrender his position at any moment? Whatever happened to the kind of moral leadership that demands you work through all the questions yourself before you try to join up and follow him? And that you keep working through them and keep reaffirming that it’s good to follow for now?

I’m not interested in what some organizational leader tells me is the right way to go about doing the work of God, regardless whom he cites as the expert, nor how many experts he lines up to back his ideas. Since when does anyone have the mandate from God to decide what my calling and ministry should be? Give me your opinion, but don’t stand in the way if God leads me in a different direction. As the DeGarmo and Key song says in reference to religious debates:

Will you still love me after I choose?
Doesn’t the issue stand upon this truth?
Up on a cross he died for sinners!
Up on a cross between two thieves!
Up on a cross he died for you and me!

(DeGarmo and Key, “Up on a Cross,” Streetlight 1986)

Suddenly all those resources that they insist belong to God were denied me and they loved me gone.

The ministry of the gospel is donor-centric: It centers on God. God decides what talents and calling I shall have; He decides how it shall be carried out. The results are measured in terms of His glory, not my personal success as humans measure such things. Don’t tell me my talents are better off under your control, doing something that pumps your prestige. Don’t tell me that I have to meet the people where they are, when what you really mean is you want me to bring them into your shadow.

Nor does it matter what any human on this earth thinks that people out there really need. I can’t give them what I don’t have from God. God is the One who knows what they need, and if He can’t tell me Himself, it’s likely because of all the crap someone else put into my head that gets in the way of His direction.

And what they need is the heart-led life. That’s what this parish is all about. Not because I say so, but because each of you discovers for yourself that it’s true. That’s what I’ve discovered for myself, and that’s what I’m trying to share. I already know that this means there won’t be very many takers, at least not at any one time. I already know this means that I can’t invest much effort and interest in what most of humanity imagines is a good idea for making the world a better place. Sure, I’m a trained and experienced logistics and management guy; I bring order out of chaos. But I keep that in its proper place. It’s quite likely that such skills will get me into some place where I can help a lot of folks with material needs, but the real issue will be those few who see my faith in my work and are moved to ask about it. Those few are the real issue, the real reason God put me in that position.

The Hebrew word for “my provider” is jireh. Our ministry here together is centered on the ultimate Provider of all things; His name is Jehovah Jireh.

An Epistle for Our Times

In terms of missions — addressing the world around us — we stand in the gateway of Noah. That is, we use the framework of Noah’s Covenant to address the broader needs of humanity. Sure, it complicates things when we are talking to Christian believers, but our general approach remains the same. To the world at large, our religion is more or less the Law of Noah.

On the one hand, the Law of Noah lays out all the basic provisions for living in our world. We’ve discussed the discrete provisions plenty of times under the heading of a call to repent. It includes the traditional Seven Noachide Laws as found in the Talmud. We take that listing with a grain of salt simply because the Talmud is a mixture of corrupt Jewish traditions and just a little bit of ancient lore that didn’t make it into Scripture. However, the more important elements of this does show up in Acts 15. In my study of Acts I describe how some of the seven laws aren’t mentioned specifically because they were already covered under what was then the current legal framework of Roman Law. What’s left is this word from James:

“Therefore I judge that we should not trouble those from among the Gentiles who are turning to God, but that we write to them to abstain from things polluted by idols, from sexual immorality, from things strangled, and from blood.” (Acts 15:19-20 NKJV)

This leaves us explaining just what it means for something to be polluted with idols, or what constitutes sexual immorality, but we probably won’t have much trouble with folks wanting to eat meat that was strangled or hasn’t been properly bled. Instead, we have a substantial job explaining why these things matter.

Thus, we come to the monumental prerequisites for actually observing the Law of Noah. This is where we mention the Ancient Near Eastern (ANE) feudal government, for that is precisely what was required in Genesis 9 where the Covenant is announced. Further, the context of that covenant assumes a heart-led culture and way of life (AKA, ANE Mysticism). This is where we spend so very much time explaining what that business in Acts 15 summarizes, because Gentiles in that time and place were usually familiar with all of the ANE heritage as a part of their cultural background. Quite significant was that those Gentiles had already sampled a wide array of varying civilizations and had an instinctive awareness that their own culture was not the default way of looking at things.

The Western lack of such awareness is our primary burden. This peculiar blindness is the mountain we must move by faith. It’s not as if we can’t package the external requirements for ready consumption, but the last thing we need is a bunch of folks hardened in their misunderstanding of everything behind those requirements. The Apostles didn’t have to wade through that, so going out and preaching in the town square was the simplest way to get the message out. For us, it’s more like shouting across a thousand miles of distance, even as we stand among the people who need to hear. We have to invest the effort to establish our weirdness visually and with power before speaking does much good.

All the more so is the burden upon us as we have already crossed the threshold into a new world, a changed reality. This is the time to invest the effort to see what our faith demands of us simply living a heart-led existence. I have this burning zeal to help you discover the fullness of shalom, the calm assurance that things will work out if we simply seize upon the heart-led necessities. When your convictions speak, that is your Voice of God for the current context, so learn to listen. And then learn to see with moral eyes what may never be apparent to mere mechanical vision. Learn to hear the song of Creation praising the Lord, the bubbly celebration of Life in the natural world around you. Let it feed your soul and keep that vivid existence burning brightly in the world around you.

This is not a time to affix labels in the way Western minds do, where the label is the identity of a thing. If it seems our function is apostolic, it would still be misleading to label ourselves “Apostle So-n-so.” Let’s be happy with Brother and Sister, and then later we can talk about vested roles. I’m on the verge of introducing a new and younger male elder to the virtual staff here in our online parish. All it means is that I trust his ability to lead the way we lead, which is rather like a shepherd calling out to the sheep who might hear, but otherwise letting them follow as they will. If the sheep are not bound by trust, there is no leadership.

So we progress as a virtual parish. We are building a network of voices who share a common vision for how to handle a world about to be shaken to the very foundations. Tribulation has come; we are a tribulation church. God has come on an inspection tour, and He is worthy of our best. We are His living epistles.

We Reveal

Our most important mission is the truth. Not just telling it, but living it so that it gains a living force — be the incarnation of truth. In fact, given the way things are in Western society, telling is pointless until you have established your credibility by living it.

There is a sense in which we are talking about living by biblical law or divine justice. Not the Mosaic Code, but the Law of Noah as seen through the eyes of Christ. We study that here. But there are certain things not always obvious, even if we assume you are heart-led. Not just in the words here, because if the sum total of your religion is reading what I write or what my affiliates write, you don’t have a religion. I’m talking about how you act in meat space; that’s what building your religion means.

So that’s the starting point: Shift the focus of your consciousness into your heart. This puts you in the place to sense the real need, the thing God wants you to focus on in any given context. Never, never, never let any other human pressure you into doing something that doesn’t feel right with your convictions. That’s not God’s mercy. That’s just being the extension of someone else’s convictions and it’s not right. Discover your own convictions; get used to sensing things from your heart.

The next thing is letting your heart tell you what you can and should do to redeem various contexts. Again, don’t let someone else define for you what you should do. Human intellectual analysis of human need is a waste of time. Humans don’t know what they need without hearing it from their hearts. Give what you have from your heart. If they can’t use it, keep offering it elsewhere until someone takes it. The starting point for all of this is your direct connection to the Creator who knows what people really do need in order to find His truth.

Do what you know how to do: Fix a car or some part of a house; help calm someone down who is out of sorts; clean up a mess you didn’t make; listen to a sob story; rescue a trapped animal — use your imagination. Trust in God. At the same time, avoid building a false dependency. You’d be surprise how many people would just love to become dependent on someone else for anything at all. Set them free; don’t make their chains of moral folly any heavier. Learn how to say “no” if that’s your heart’s answer. Don’t entangle yourself. And sometimes the biggest miracle of all is simply being patient and putting up with someone or something that really isn’t your problem. Love them despite their being unlovable.

Also, it doesn’t have to be that significant. Do some small thing that’s far beneath your best and brightest talents. Try picking up trash once in a while. Let Creation tell you what needs changing, what needs a redeeming touch to set things back on the course of divine justice. Invest some time to contemplate what fire burns inside of you to restore things to what God revealed.

Some More Babylon

The symbolic logic behind parables requires quantum thinking. It requires that you tear things down to the smallest practical level, including thinking about thinking itself, and become aware that a particular symbol has meaning on multiple levels. The parabolic symbols in Scripture are alive; they are discrete beings with a life of their own. We are meant to see them differently in different contexts. We are supposed to explore the narrative in which the symbols appear and let them speak to us about God’s moral truth. This is why I insist that parabolic communication is planting signposts that indicate places to explore, versus Western communication that pictures truth as contained within the words. “Words mean things” — to which we say, “nonsense!” Words have no power on their own; the power is in the life explored. You cannot contain life in a box without killing it.

Truth is alive; it can never be static. It’s not that we don’t care about facts; we care little about facts because the facts can never be known, only perceived, which is not the same thing. Perception becomes reality on the grounds that reality is shifty mists that God can change on-the-fly at His whim. His revelation declares that He has done so repeatedly. A reality of immutable fact is a myth. Certitude is the dream of fools. Humans at large perceive reality as immutable because this puts it within some theoretical reach of human reason. We don’t need God; we can figure it out on our own.

If you examine what goes on in fiction writing and movies regarding Artificial Intelligence (AI), you see one recurring theme: the rejection of the Fall. It was first formally pronounced as the doctrine of the early Catholic Church that man’s intellect is not fallen, that a human can be conditioned and improved until his/her better self prevails. This is a direct rejection of revelation. But this theme of perfectibility persists across the board in just about everything you read seeking to provoke men to remake a better world. No one argues that we this world is just fine; everyone agrees it’s pretty messed up. But any solution that doesn’t start with confession of our fallen nature is doomed to chase everything — anything — except the truth. So when someone asks the question of what constitutes human nature, the answer is our fallen perception that won’t let us see what we really are.

By the way, the early Catholic doctrine of man’s unfallen intellect comes from the long-term effects of the Judaizers. You knew that, right? It’s a part of the effects of Hellenism that perverted the Hebrew mystical outlook into the legalistic nonsense of Judaism. That’s where “words mean things” was born, and the false “mystical” silliness about the power of words to work magic. Take a look at most writing in the study of magic and you’ll see it never quite escapes the assumptions behind Western mythology, and it reads that power-of-words back into whatever ancient texts they presume to revere and learn from. Sheesh, it even shows up in charismatic Christian religions today as the “Word Faith” doctrine — derived from early Kabbala, a component of Orthodox Judaism. We still hear Charismatics say, “Don’t pronounce a word-curse on yourself by negative confession.” Words do not make reality; perception does, and it’s not permanent.

Back to parables and parabolic imagery: So we have that story of Babylon from the early chapters of Genesis. What do we see? A megalomaniac Nimrod whose doctrine is that mankind can build a unifying religion that will make reverence for God unnecessary. I can recall a very brilliant student telling me that if God would just leave us alone we could accomplish so much good. Like Nimrod who continued to eat from the Forbidden Fruit: “We can be our own gods! We can decide for ourselves what is good and evil.”

In the past I’ve noted that, on one level, Babylon means that everything has a price and that’s all we need to know. On another level, I said the Babylon means slavery and oppression, whether the chains be physical or mental. But on yet another level, I’ll suggest that globalism is just another manifestation of Babylon. It’s a dream of pulling folks together and improving ourselves until we can all discover that great unknown potential of humanity. Babylon means all of those things and much more.

But it’s that persistent lie that we can somehow fix ourselves, that the real problem with this world is that we just haven’t tried hard enough/long enough — that’s the meaning of Babylon I point at here. All the solutions that rest on changing people are doomed before they start. Think about some of the more thoughtful statements about the problems of social media, in which it’s a subtle reminder from some globalist why Trump (dammit!) won the election for POTUS. “If we don’t fix this problem, we can’t get rid of the Trumps in this world.” It’s a form of scolding that marks the Social Justice Warrior front still causing mayhem and havoc in the US today. Shall we tell them that Trump is God’s whip-hand flogging the globalists? And when that’s done, Trump will face his own doom, and his grand schemes will wither away, because that’s how God works with those who refuse to hear His truth with their hearts.

I don’t claim to have such marvelous far-seeing answers as the globalist dreamers. There’s nothing to fix in human nature because it can’t be fixed on our end. If God doesn’t reach out and restore to us individually the pathway back to Eden, we’ll never find it. And there sure-as-Hell isn’t any way my answers will be your answers. They might come close enough at times that we can fellowship and work together, but the one thing you should learn from me is how I found the path, not the path I found. There is no one universal answer for mankind once you get past the Flaming Sword.

What I want most for you is the capacity to deal with living truth on your own. I can’t describe it; I can’t make the truth fit into a neat container. I can indicate something about it with a narrative that walks on its own feet and plants markers to things you could explore for yourself. There is no preconceived result, no concrete solution, no great shiny vision for a human future on this planet. All I have are little stories about how I rediscovered something long and often lost in human history: It’s the heart ruling over the intellect. What you do with my little stories is wide open territory in front of us both. I’m not worried about how it turns out because I have no vested interest in outcomes. Just seeing you free to explore the true Land of the Heart, the Land without Words, is all the payback I need.

Psalm 119: Yod 73-80

The psalmist shows us the Path of Justice. It could also be seen as retribution if we understand the justice of being rescued from those who deny God’s revelation. We learn to be patient as God corrects us and makes us stronger through the evils other people commit, but in due time, His wrath falls on the unjust while His servants harvest blessings because God’s truth is how this world actually works.

God has made each of us; our place in this world is wholly His doing. If there is any source of wisdom about how we should live here, it is the One who made us and all things. This is the kind of life that cheers others seeking His truth. They rejoice in the confirmation of God’s promises coming true by example.

The psalmist claims to know — using a Hebrew word that covers awareness in all aspects — without any doubt that God’s justice is the very definition of righteousness. He presses upon us His discipline according to His promises to keep us in His mercy. It’s a genuine blessing He does not lightly allow us to escape His love. So he prays to be driven out sin into the place where God’s shalom stands waiting and he can breathe a sigh of relief.

And when he is too weak, the psalmist prays that God will permit His compassion to come find him wherever he has wandered. The God who bears the shepherd’s rod is a delightful sight to a lost lamb, even when the rod corrects, for the same rod defends us as well. All the more so when we came into that sorrow because of arrogant men who deny God’s Word. God’s Presence shames them, but brings the psalmist to peaceful meditation on that Word.

So if any others have lost their way and cannot see God clearly, let them turn to the freshly resolved psalmist who now has a clear vision. They’ll recognize him because they already know at least something about God’s revelation. And while the fleshly mind will surely fail him at times, he knows that God will speak consistently through his heart. He knows that giving heed to his conscience will never leave him ashamed.