A Divine Mandate

I have a divine mandate, a calling from God. We all have one, so I’m not that special. However, my calling is pastoral in the sense of shepherding the people of God. Unlike most pastoral people, I don’t decide who shall be in my flock; it’s the flock that decides. In that sense, it is God who decides and leads people to give some regard to my pastoral leadership.

In this virtual setting, most of my leadership is exerted through persuasive writing. I’m trying to keep an eye on ways I can help God’s people get out of Satan’s domain. There is no image here of perfect escape, but of selective escape for certain issues that I have been granted to understand. On another level, it is a calling to understand something of the nature of Satan’s dominion so that people can discern for themselves how to look for ways to be free. Thus, I tend to offer my specific ideas as examples of how to approach the whole question.

One of those issues is the broad cultural trap in which we live. The best ally Satan has in keeping you under his thumb is the social mythology of our Western world.

We know that humans are inherently vulnerable to certain threats. That’s why there is such a thing as bulletproof vests, for example. They are expensive and their effectiveness is limited, while the act of wearing one is burdensome in itself. But if you spend very much time exposed to people inclined to fire bullets at you, it’s worth the expense and trouble.

We are also vulnerable in other ways. That includes a great deal of psychological vulnerability. The human mind remains open to some kinds of threat simply because that’s how we are wired. In order for us to live here in this environment, we have to take certain mental shortcuts. But those shortcuts can be exploited by other people to manipulate us into doing things we shouldn’t. Naturally you would expect the predators to lie and play down that weakness, saying it’s all a bunch of hoopla and scare-mongering. They have allies who dismiss the threats by saying you should simply ignore the manipulation, as if there is no cultural atmosphere that disarms us and makes it too painful to argue about it.

Precious few are born with the will and presence of mind to fight the system. And most of those are intentionally pressured and harassed until they stop exercising that will to resist. Our world makes it terribly expensive, even deadly, to take your own path. Distrust of the system will get you killed, or at least badly hurt. The system itself is predatory and demands that you keep yourself vulnerable.

I am my brother’s keeper; there are lots of sheep who aren’t wired to fight, so someone has to fight for them. I’m not a Darwinian about such things; I care. So it’s natural for some like me with a pastoral bent to make a lot of noise about things you need to consider changing. If I warn you about something the system seeks to do to us to deceive and manipulate, you can blow it off if you like; it’s really your choice. But if God starts knocking on the door of you conscience about this, then get with Him and work it out. If you start making noise about how people should naturally handle such things on their own, then you’ll be classed as an ally of Satan. Resistance has been beat out of them, so it’s my job work at healing the wounds and to provoke it back to life. Don’t be a calloused ass.

Advertising is inherently evil, folks. It’s one thing to let people know what you offer, but you’ll almost never see that in advertising; it’s so rare now you can’t call it “advertising.” Advertising is inherently manipulative, striving to prey on human weaknesses, both native and culturally derived vulnerabilities. By no means would I expect to change the system, particularly on the Internet. We are awash in advertising. What I am suggesting is that you as an individual consider the problem and decide whether God is calling you to act on this problem. I’ll offer ways to bulletproof your mind, both in restructuring the mind’s operations and in in blocking predatory input. There is no moral obligation to consume advertising, so fight it tooth and nail. That’s what Jesus did in resisting Satan in the Wilderness Temptations.

I’m not worried about some tiny slice of Internet users blocking advertising, as if this will bring the whole system down. The vast majority of folks won’t do anything about it. What I am worried about is the very real effort on the part of some to take that choice away from you. Those people are so evil they deserve vilification. These are people who want to hurt you. Given the right opportunity, I would consider taking more assertive action to stop them and removing the threat altogether. However, such opportunities are wholly unlikely, so I’ll stick with making noise about taking control of how you use the Internet. I’ll agitate for a few folks — that tiny slice of humanity who feel drawn to my message — to take more assertive action with how they use their computers.

That’s what God has called me to do.

Our Crazy Ancient New Religion 5

Three short items this time.

One — Be aware that heart-led is not the same as spiritually awakened. So far as anyone can tell, the choice to use the sensory heart and connect your conscious awareness to the heart-mind is universal, a basic function of human existence. It does no require spiritual birth (AKA “born again”) to use it. What happens is that such people will tend to misinterpret their exposure to the moral realm. They won’t have the built-in spiritual awareness that only the Holy Spirit can give. This is why a lot of folks seem aware of operating principles and various portions of divine morality, but don’t have a consistent picture of it. They can see inside the sphere but don’t have a rooted grasp on what they perceive.

On the other hand, a great many people who are spiritually awakened in Christ do not use their heart-mind, which is a major concern for us. So far, the vast majority of folks drawn to our religion are these people. They are already believers, but lack the clear grasp of what to do with it. We can help this latter group of people find their way, but only God can change the spiritual condition in the former group. Nothing says we can’t be friends and witness the truth to everyone.

An awful lot of our ministry looks just like counseling, but counseling is mostly a special form or teaching ministry. We have to engage our hearts to sense what is broken and help them see and hear. The stuff we might tell them won’t work until we help them resolve the blockage between mind and heart. The single biggest problem is the mind rejecting or ignoring stuff.

Two — Everything starts with your location. That’s true on two levels, at least.

On the moral level, you really need to seek a sense of calling from God. Your actual calling is a moving target because life is all about change, but the issue is your sense of calling. It’s a matter of where you stand in God’s business on this earth — Why are you still here? For some, the process is a long one, bouncing a million things off their convictions until something sticks. The process itself is exceedingly valuable.

On the practical level of application, your geographic location can be wrong against the broad moral fabric for reasons that don’t make any sense at all. At any given moment, the power of God working in your body as Creator matches you to a setting that is your “home,” where the means to optimal life (shalom) are waiting. Your divine heritage is tied to a physical location. You are built to be somewhere, and it’s incumbent on you to sense the need to move to another place. You don’t have to know consciously all the details why, but you do need a wider awareness that you are in the wrong place for your calling and your needs. Creation itself can tell you that you need to move.

Three — Western culture gets most things wrong, and it is particularly bad about the relationship between perception and reality. There’s a sense in which Western Civilization is a very bad case of mass hypnosis. Everyone has been taught a fundamental approach on the issue and it’s very wrong, but since everyone agrees to it, the world seems to work just fine that way.

So get this: Your false perception by itself can kill you. Reality is fuzzy in the first place, and a great many people die from simply believing a lie so overwhelmingly powerful that their bodies doesn’t argue. Now extend that outwards and realize that demonic deception can make nonbelievers experience things differently from what a strong believer experiences in the precise same setting. And for all the difference it makes, both experiences are equally “real.”

Yes, reality is just that fungible. You will have to explore this for yourself. It’s not that heart-led believers can’t be fooled, but that demons have a lot tougher time fooling them. Demonic powers depend on perception far more than Westerners realize. The key is a powerful moral awareness of what God says ought to be.

Our Crazy Ancient New Religion 3

What’s the difference between a demon and delusion?

In the Old Testament we see little mention of the Devil. He’s there in Eden, mentioned briefly in relation to Saul’s torment, Job, and a few other places. This is not the time and place for in-depth word studies, but the Hebrew text doesn’t ignore them. Rather, the Old Testament writers took it for granted demons existed. We should attempt to reclaim their attitude because it’s the one God gave them. Our biggest problem is shedding the false images typical in Western Christianity.

Further, I’m not really interested in deep theological studies here. We are looking at practical applications: What do we need to proceed with our religion? Religion is not faith, but the human application of faith. One of our biggest problems is false information on how Creation works because we have been taught to approach the Bible with false assumptions.

Given the broad collected mentions of Satan and his activities, one of the best biblical images for his position is Potiphar in Egypt (Genesis 39-40). He was Pharaoh’s “jailer,” whose mission was to take custody of the prisoners as slave labor. Based on their skills and available jobs, Potiphar could rent them out for whatever would earn him income (details varied by local custom and law). Having a noble keep the jail was a common arrangement among Ancient Near Eastern kingdoms. In many cases, the royal jailer was a very substantial noble, it could be a lucrative position. Thus, if you as a subject defy the ruler or cause him to question your loyalty, you could end up pulling a term of slavery.

The applicable part of that image is how God uses Satan as His divine “jailer.” However, there’s a subtle nuance of degrees involved: To the degree you don’t claim your full divine heritage, to that degree Satan owns you. Your eternal future is not at issue here; it’s a question of whether you live by your heart and harmonize with God’s divine character and harvest your share of shalom. The blessings God has poured on Creation for those who love Him are devoured by Satan on behalf of anyone who falls short on loyalty here in this realm of existence. Nothing Satan does can affect someone’s spiritual destiny outside this life.

John’s Apocalypse indicates in symbolic language that Satan holds authority over a third of the angelic beings (Revelation 12:4). They were swept down to the earth; it’s consistent with the Curse of the Fall, where Satan was confined to this realm of existence. His assigned task was consuming mankind insofar as they were more like dust than like God’s family. I keep reminding folks that the essence of living like dust is relying on human intellect and reason and ignoring the heart-mind. So if you return to Eden through the Flaming Sword of revelation and restore the ascendancy of your heart over your brain, you make yourself less available to the Satan’s slavery.

Restated: Conforming to the moral character of God limits Satan’s activity in your life. In a certain sense, obeying the Law Covenants will place you out of reach from the Devil. He is confined by the character of God in Creation, too. So you would naturally think the Devil will work to keep you from claiming your divine heritage. He will present claims on your blessings, and you need to stand close to Christ where God will deny his claims.

Not in the legalistic sense of Pharisaism, not to mention virtually the whole of Western thinking, but God limits Satan in a broad general sense. God is an emperor with a very complicated business of running Creation, so sometimes you’ll fall under suffering for no apparent reason (like Job), but that just means the reason is over your head. The temptation is to listen to the Devil’s lies that you somehow have gotten into hot water with God, so you need to surrender to demonic custody. Satan isn’t harmed by your false image of God and His revelation.

Up to this point in our series, we need to recall that his lies include seduction from letting your heart rule over your health and your interaction with Creation as a whole. Satan would love to make you forget that you can hear Creation’s voices. He would love to deny the truth that your heart tells you, so that the door is open for him to enslave you.

And demons are real “persons” in the sense of being individuals with varied personalities, varied powers and so forth. Satan isn’t going to discuss with you his strategy and why he chooses to assign a very nasty demon to this person — with very apparent “possession” symptoms — and others simply have to face occasional temptation to act with weakness. But deception is the primary weapon. As long as you believe his story about something, you can’t act the way God intended.

What difference does it make whether it seems very obvious this one has a demon, while that one just lives with a very sad delusion? It’s just words; there is no effective difference. Ill health in the awareness is not so different from ill health in some other part of your physical being in practical terms. Either way, the Devil has stolen your privileges.

He does it only because we listen to him; he can’t take what we don’t surrender.

Not What It Seems

Just a short reminder that most of the dramatic events making the news are not what they seem. However, I suppose by now you’ve discerned that whatever we are supposed to take as “terrorism” is coming to a theater near you. That is, the drama will be spread across Europe and North America. Probably a few other places, but in one form or another, with one mask or another, the time has come for amping up the fear factor.

I won’t try to bury this under a long discussion of who is doing what and why. All you need to know is that it’s very real violence and death and destruction, but it’s being guided by the people we elected to office in one way or another. It’s your tax money paying for it. I’ve already made note that The Cult made sure we would not be allowed to have good and decent people in government. Only criminals are allowed to run for office or be appointed. Despite appearances to the contrary, the whole thing is staged.

This is our “normal” and we need to get past that in our minds so we can discern the hand of God and exploit things for His glory. As much as possible, shed your fears and face the task so you can finish and go Home to be with the Lord. Nothing else you can do will be half so much a blessing to those left behind.

Bears Watching

This is my Father’s world, so I have nothing to fear. Rather, following the counsel to be “wise as serpents and harmless as doves” (Matthew 10:16), we watch what this world does and prepare to exploit human events for His glory.

Between the two blogs, I’ve tried to enunciate a doctrine that we cannot expect any human political activity to gain even the faintest direct support from God, particularly in the sense that He was involved in Ancient Israel. There is no government today that actively participates in any of the Law Covenants revealed in Scripture.

Granted, we’ve had no end of people claiming some direct approval of God, but it requires first swallowing varying amounts of mythology that is alien to Scripture. Are we not amazed at the vast number of Christians who forget the full implications of Jesus’ statement to Pilate that His Kingdom is rooted in another realm of existence (John 18:36)? Jesus’ own viewpoint on things was emphatically otherworldly. Whatever you want to make of His departing commands, it was not aimed at capturing political control on this earth. He stated flatly that He could have done that at any time, and plenty of folks begged Him to do so, even trying to force Him into it.

This world as we know it is slated for destruction; that’s what the final act of redemption will be. Any reference to conquering this realm of existence quite obviously refers to our internal conquest of the fallen self as an ally with this realm. We fight against our internal cursed impulses and commit ourselves to reflecting His glory into this world precisely so we can leave it. Dying is our reward unless we happen to be around when He returns. That so many people who can read English would choke on that teaching simply reflects how easy it is to get lost in all kinds of deceptions.

I have no complaint with the so-called Charismatic gifts of the Spirit. What bothers me is that, after direct involvement in churches where those gifts were emphasized in any way, I found that there was simply too much obvious fakery attached to most of it. By no means was it all fake, but I have to step back and question anything that doesn’t lead to self-conquest. When the presence of those manifestations of power lead to any kind of obsession with this world, there’s something wrong. I kept running into people determined to make this world a better place in materialistic sense, and that is not our divine calling and mission. Those gifts were not granted to consume upon our own excitement and personal human fulfillment. However, the Charismatic experience itself is not a problem.

This abuse of the gifts was one bad trend. At the same time another bad doctrine was growing, and it typically goes by the nickname of Dominionism. This doctrine is a direct reflection of Reformation teaching about harnessing the power of civil government to enforce some sort of public morality. The Dominion doctrine is more specific and carefully structured for concrete plans to take over secular human government. No one should be surprised that Dominionism and Charismatic teachings would merge.

Don’t get lost here; this is not a question of numbers and how many individuals and monster churches follow this. Rather, it’s a question of influence. Lots of people embrace this in churches where Charismatic and Dominionist teachings aren’t officially supported, at least not openly. This combination has captured the interest of a powerful politically active minority, and God alone knows how many trillions of political dollars are behind it.

Finally, we should hardly be surprised that this thing is also largely Dispensationalist. How could the Neocons miss this opportunity? We dare not forget the cynical principle of Neocon politics that using religion to steer the masses is in everyone’s best interest. We saw it in Constantine’s fake adoption of Christian religion. It goes all the way back to the Tower of Babel, using astrology to seize control of humanity and steer them away from God’s direct command to disperse after the Flood. The Neocon political doctrine is a direct result of Zionism, and uses Christian Charismatic Dominionism to ensure America serves the Zionist agenda.

This is what’s behind the election campaign of Ted Cruz. There’s a video at that link pulling together several clips from his senate campaign, and the same stuff is happening right now with his presidential campaign. This whole thing is yet another manifestation of what I called the rising right-wing backlash. At this point the establishment GOP leadership is on the verge of anointing Cruz as their man, if they haven’t already agreed on it; he’s courting them. How this plays out in the actual Republican Convention and election remains to be seen. However, this powerful force will not simply go away if Trump wins.

Familiarize yourself with the flavor, because this is a taste of the future.