Posts Tagged ‘incense’

Being in Anguish

 

Today, reply is on the suffering of mankind expressed through Jesus Christ at Gethsemane.  Like David, who fasted and prayed for a sick child, daring to seek relief from divine rebuke and unanswered prayer, yet still had to accept the immutable judgment against himself, Jesus sought to reason with the Father on accepting an alternative to the cross that would continue his living ministry on the earth.  In accepting the duty of tending his father’s sheep, David became accountable for each member of the flock, and did not rely on GOD to intervene whenever he might have to retrieve them from the jaws of a lion or a bear.  Similarly, Jesus accepted accountability for the flock he was given, and was not to rely on action by the Father to complete the duty of the Son as the Good Shepherd. The meaning, purpose, and work of the blood of Gethsemane was not the same as that for the blood of his scourging, and the blood of the cross.  The humanity of Jesus had to be authentic, and could not be artificial, counterfeit, or a “knock off.”  Even so, the Savior’s makeup and integrity are manifested differently according to different demands, forms, and requirements of law (e.g., carnal, covenant, mechanical, natural, sacred), and the possibilities for his operating at the same time as the son of Man, as the Son of GOD, and as one sharing the fullness of divinity (we say, the GODhead; the Trinity; the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit).  Just as incense was used to lift and  make fragrant the prayers of the saints, yet, was not enough to replace the blood of atonement, the blood of Jesus offered to supply a new testament could not be sufficient without the cross.  A writer in the “Yahoo! Answers” forum using the ID “jacque” (Level 1 with 26 points, a member since March 07, 2018) posted the following:

 

Why did jesus ask the lord to take this cup away from him when he knew he can take it and endure all the pain on the cross?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,  Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.  For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.  Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin.  And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him:  For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.  If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?  But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.  Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence:  shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?  For they verily for a few days chastened us after their own pleasure; but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness.  (Hebrews 12:  1-10, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Whoso Keepeth His Word (03/09/2018); Using Repetition in Prayer? (02/21/2018); Sons of GOD Suffer? (09/19/2017); Accepting the Divine Will? (12/06/2016); The Cross was Premature? (04/07/2016); The Passion at Gethsemane (03/28/2013); Separated and Sealed? (03/29/2013)

 

“jacque”, even like all of us, today, Jesus had to be careful not to “overplay his hand,” so to speak.  Jesus behaved before GOD as an ordinary human on our behalf.  While demonstrating faith and reliance upon divinity, he continued to humble himself, focusing all upon the will of GOD, rather than answering self-promotion.  Following the Passover meal where he instituted the Lord’s Supper, Jesus and his apostles went out to the Garden of Gethsemane, where they would camp the night.  However, just as the Savior could feel a light breeze, the heat of a summer day, and the cold of a long night, the Lord sensed the impending doom, and realized his dying on the cross was swiftly approaching.  As the Son of the Highest, Jesus turned to the Father confessing gratitude and offering fervent prayer.

Among mature Christians, that a man can not be accountable for, become correct by self-will (his own willpower), or explain and justify his sin and transgression of divine law is an overwhelming limitation that utterly condemns the living to despair, hopelessness, and eternal separation from GOD.  The courage required for one to go before GOD, and plead in judgment while aware of the truth of their guiltiness can be neither fashioned nor purchased through the finite tools and resources of the flesh.  Being in the form and process of a created being, a man, Jesus could be certain of (be sure; know) many things, yet, he continued to always be in a mode like every other man of “risk-taking” and uncertainty.  To lose proper balance and focus would be to blaspheme GOD, presume upon the divine sovereign, despise the sacred mercy within judgment, and incur total damnation.

Jesus did not suffer physical harm at Gethsemane; however, emotionally, psychologically, and spiritually, Jesus endured great anguish and isolation in place of sanctification along with weakness rather than strength.  Consider again the following that uses language from the Bible:

(1.)  Luke 18:  10-14, King James Version (KJV):  10 Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican.  11 The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican.  12 I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess.  13 And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.  14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other:  for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.

(2.)  Matthew 26:  40-42, KJV:  40 And he cometh unto the disciples, and findeth them asleep, and saith unto Peter, What, could ye not watch with me one hour?  41 Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation:  the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.  42 He went away again the second time, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except I drink it, thy will be done.

(3.)  Mark 13:  31-37, KJV:  31 Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away.  32 But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father.  33 Take ye heed, watch and pray:  for ye know not when the time is.  34 For the Son of Man is as a man taking a far journey, who left his house, and gave authority to his servants, and to every man his work, and commanded the porter to watch.  35 Watch ye therefore:  for ye know not when the master of the house cometh, at even, or at midnight, or at the cockcrowing, or in the morning:  36 Lest coming suddenly he find you sleeping.  37 And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch.

There is far more to be said, thoughtfully practiced, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (4.)  James 5:  16-18, KJV:  16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.  17 Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain:  and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months.  18 And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

 

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THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

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Elijah Calling for Fire From GOD to Defeat the 450 Priests of Baal

 

Today, fire from GOD, divine judgment, and the Lake of Fire are topics.  In Scripture, fire appears as an emblem of divine authority evoking awe, and a sign of divine righteousness.  Because we are speaking of a tool used by GOD for whom nothing is impossible, Christian believers accept that fire can be made to fall like rain even though mingled with ice and hail.  It is written:  Isaiah 4:  3-6, King James Version (KJV):  3 And it shall come to pass, that he that is left in Zion, and he that remaineth in Jerusalem, shall be called holy, even every one that is written among the living in Jerusalem:  4 When the LORD shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the midst thereof by the spirit of judgment, and by the spirit of burning.  5 And the LORD will create upon every dwelling place of mount Zion, and upon her assemblies, a cloud and smoke by day, and the shining of a flaming fire by night:  for upon all the glory shall be a defence.  6 And there shall be a tabernacle for a shadow in the day time from the heat, and for a place of refuge, and for a covert from storm and from rain.  The fighter at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “JohnnyBravo” (Level 1 with 106 points, a member since November 16, 2010) posted the following:

 

Christians: How can Satan burn in the lake of fire when it’s clear from this verse that angels don’t get hurt from fire?

Daniel 3:25

He said, “Look! I see four men walking around in the fire, unbound and unharmed, and the fourth looks like a son of the gods.”

This is referencing the story of Shadrach and his 2 brothers.

Satan was once an angel, so why would he suffer in Hell? Wouldn’t he view it as a nice trip to the hot springs?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  And he sent again a captain of the third fifty with his fifty. And the third captain of fifty went up, and came and fell on his knees before Elijah, and besought him, and said unto him, O man of God, I pray thee, let my life, and the life of these fifty thy servants, be precious in thy sight.  Behold, there came fire down from heaven, and burnt up the two captains of the former fifties with their fifties:  therefore let my life now be precious in thy sight.  And the angel of the LORD said unto Elijah, Go down with him:  be not afraid of him. And he arose, and went down with him unto the king.  And he said unto him, Thus saith the LORD, Forasmuch as thou hast sent messengers to enquire of Baalzebub the god of Ekron, is it not because there is no God in Israel to enquire of his word? therefore thou shalt not come down off that bed on which thou art gone up, but shalt surely die.  So he died according to the word of the LORD which Elijah had spoken. And Jehoram reigned in his stead in the second year of Jehoram the son of Jehoshaphat king of Judah; because he had no son.  (2nd Kings 1:  13-17, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Servants To The Body? (01/17/2017); Christ The Solid Rock? (08/07/2016); A Guarantee of Judgment? (04/15/2016); The Fire From GOD? (06/22/2014); Destroying the Resurrected Body? (02/10/2014); For They Shall Be Ashes (02/11/2014); Prophetic Demonstrations (09/06/2013); Why GOD Prayed to GOD (09/07/2013)

 

“JohnnyBravo”, the notion that Satan can not be hurt in fire comes to us as another form of the answer given to Eve, Ye shall not surely die.  In the holy writings, different operations of fire from GOD include (1) anointing, cleansing, purifying fire such as fell on the apostles at Pentecost, (2) fire and flames indicating the active presence who is GOD as was seen by Moses in the burning bush, (3) flame that sanctifies, sets apart, and identifies the portion that belongs to GOD like the pillar of flame that stood between Pharaoh’s army and those fleeing Egypt in the Exodus, and (4) consuming, destroying fire such as that set apart to destroy the Devil and his angels.  Throughout the Scriptures burning and fire repeatedly indicate judgment, correction, prophecy, and wrath against sin.  Despite having been consecrated and ordained as priests, two sons of Aaron were punished for seeking to use ordinary fire from the earth when offering incense to the Most High.  Holy fire (the fire from GOD; fire from the holy altar) is very different in its makeup, process and substance from common fire used on the earth for cooking, light, or heating.  Holy fire separates the carnal, material and social aspects of an offering from the spirit content that is to be transferred to GOD such as awe, devotion, faithfulness, gratitude, humility, love, obedience, reverence and zeal.  Consider again the following from the Bible:

(1.)  Leviticus 10:  1-3, King James Version (KJV):  1 And Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, took either of them his censer, and put fire therein, and put incense thereon, and offered strange fire before the LORD, which he commanded them not.  2 And there went out fire from the LORD, and devoured them, and they died before the LORD.  3 Then Moses said unto Aaron, This is it that the LORD spake, saying, I will be sanctified in them that come nigh me, and before all the people I will be glorified. And Aaron held his peace.

(2.)  1st Kings 18:  21-24, KJV:  21 And Elijah came unto all the people, and said, How long halt ye between two opinions? if the LORD be God, follow him:  but if Baal, then follow him. And the people answered him not a word.  22 Then said Elijah unto the people, I, even I only, remain a prophet of the LORD; but Baal’s prophets are four hundred and fifty men.  23 Let them therefore give us two bullocks; and let them choose one bullock for themselves, and cut it in pieces, and lay it on wood, and put no fire under:  and I will dress the other bullock, and lay it on wood, and put no fire under:  24 And call ye on the name of your gods, and I will call on the name of the LORD:  and the God that answereth by fire, let him be God. And all the people answered and said, It is well spoken.

(3.)  Matthew 25:  40-45, KJV:  40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.  41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:  42 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat:  I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink:  43 I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not:  sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not.  44 Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee?  45 Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me. 

(4.)  Revelation 20:  13-15, KJV:  13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them:  and they were judged every man according to their works.  14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.  15 And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.

There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (5.)  Revelation 20:  9-11, KJV:  9 And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city:  and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.  10 And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.  11 And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

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Distinctions among meddling, obedience, presumption, and pride are in view, today.  Ignorance of divine law is not a justification for wrongdoing.  “Good intentions” do not erase disregard for blessing from GOD that can include inheritance, law, prosperity, a role in service, and privilege to worship.  The death upon the cross and living ministry of Jesus Christ was no more a condemnation and denial of governing law, than the reign of David from the tribe of Judah as King and Prophet to Israel.  In addition to becoming an example of those who forget GOD, deny the sanctions in place against sin through divine law, and show no heartfelt respect to Deity, the death of Uzzah, who reached out to steady the Ark of Covenant when he thought it would fall from a cart, prefigures the death of Jesus upon the cross, the second death through final judgment against the wicked, and the full range of consequences for failure to trust GOD to maintain the things that manifest divinity including his law, the express will of GOD.  A fighter at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Henry” (Level 1 with 161 points, a member since May 13, 2016) posted the following:

 

If God killed someone for trying to help, does that mean we are supposed to kill missionaires?

(2 Samuel 6:6-7) And when they came to Nachon’s threshingfloor, Uzzah put forth his hand to the ark of God, and took hold of it; for the oxen shook it. And the anger of the Lord was kindled against Uzzah; and God smote him there for his error; and there he died by the ark of God.

All this guy wanted to do was help The Lord, and God ended his life. Does that mean the next time a Christian knocks on my door trying to “Help The Lord” that I get to end their life. Isn’t Christianity great?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Now Korah, the son of Izhar, the son of Kohath, the son of Levi, and Dathan and Abiram, the sons of Eliab, and On, the son of Peleth, sons of Reuben, took men:  And they rose up before Moses, with certain of the children of Israel, two hundred and fifty princes of the assembly, famous in the congregation, men of renown:  And they gathered themselves together against Moses and against Aaron, and said unto them, Ye take too much upon you, seeing all the congregation are holy, every one of them, and the LORD is among them:  wherefore then lift ye up yourselves above the congregation of the LORD?  And when Moses heard it, he fell upon his face:  And he spake unto Korah and unto all his company, saying, Even to morrow the LORD will shew who are his, and who is holy; and will cause him to come near unto him:  even him whom he hath chosen will he cause to come near unto him.  This do; Take you censers, Korah, and all his company;  And put fire therein, and put incense in them before the LORD to morrow:  and it shall be that the man whom the LORD doth choose, he shall be holy:  ye take too much upon you, ye sons of Levi.  And Moses said unto Korah, Hear, I pray you, ye sons of Levi:  Seemeth it but a small thing unto you, that the God of Israel hath separated you from the congregation of Israel, to bring you near to himself to do the service of the tabernacle of the LORD, and to stand before the congregation to minister unto them?  And he hath brought thee near to him, and all thy brethren the sons of Levi with thee:  and seek ye the priesthood also?  For which cause both thou and all thy company are gathered together against the LORD: and what is Aaron, that ye murmur against him?  (Numbers 16:  1-11, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  The Cross and Mankind (05/13/2016); More On Divine Justification (02/08/2016); Presumption, Pride and Sin? (11/24/2015); All Sin Is Willful? (10/20/2015); Correct in Only Your Mind? (05/04/2015); Resurrection from the Dead? (04/23/2014); Not A Matter Of Opinion? (04/24/2014)

 

“Henry”, the GOD we serve is a Deity who practices vengeance (we say, judgment, justice).  That divinity would have to appear in human form (we say, Incarnation) to embody sin, and be destroyed upon the cross is taken to be a stern warning by many Christian believers to approach the things of GOD with balance, caution, and sobriety.  While many followers of Christ trust that, through operations of the Holy Spirit, blood, correction, and truth from the cross are flowing to here and now, they also seek to be careful not to rely upon secular assumptions about divine teachings, or “jump to conclusions” that are not anchored in sacred knowledge and practice (we say, sacraments).

In the same way the expulsion of Adam (the pair) from Eden and the crucifixion of Jesus Christ both must be acknowledged as demonstrations of divine wrath against sin, the “breach” upon Uzzah is to be understood as a revelation of the character, nature and substance of Deity expressed as law, covenant relationship, trust, and divine love.  In his anointing by the prophet Samuel, David appropriated to himself more than simply authorization to serve as king over Israel.  David, who calls GOD “father” in the holy writings, also understood his appointment to include that of Judge, High Priest, and Prophet who had authority to command the Levitical priests, schedule their service, and establish liturgy for the tabernacle and temple that would follow.

The Ark of the Covenant was not to be touched by human hands.  A death penalty was in place from the time of the wandering of Israel in the wilderness.  The Ark was to be lifted and carried only by using poles.  When the sons of the High Priest Eli came under the curse of GOD, as did King Saul, the Ark was captured by the Philistines.  When David saw an opportunity to bring the counsel of GOD to himself at Zion as represented through the Ark and the regalia of the High Priest (the ephod, Urim and Thummim), the Ark was placed upon a new cart pulled by oxen that had never been yoked. 

Believers often commit the sins of presumption and pride that may appear as “harmless”, “innocent”, and their way of being themselves.  It is partly for this reason that divine forgiveness, mercy in judgment, and the ministry of reconciliation are provided to mankind through the cross.  Consider how some of this appears stated in the language of the Bible:

(1.)  Deuteronomy 17:  11-13, King James Version (KJV):  11 According to the sentence of the law which they shall teach thee, and according to the judgment which they shall tell thee, thou shalt do:  thou shalt not decline from the sentence which they shall shew thee, to the right hand, nor to the left.  12 And the man that will do presumptuously, and will not hearken unto the priest that standeth to minister there before the LORD thy God, or unto the judge, even that man shall die: and thou shalt put away the evil from Israel.  13 And all the people shall hear, and fear, and do no more presumptuously.

(2.)  Psalms 19:  12-14, KJV:  12 Who can understand his errors? cleanse thou me from secret faults.  13 Keep back thy servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me:  then shall I be upright, and I shall be innocent from the great transgression.  14 Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer.

(3.)  2nd Corinthians 5:  17-21, KJV:  17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature:  old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.  18 And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;  19 To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.  20 Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us:  we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.  21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.

There is far more that could be said, must be carefully examined, and spiritually understood.  (For example, (4.)  Hebrews 10:  28-30, KJV:  28 He that despised Moses’ law died without mercy under two or three witnesses:  29 Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?  30 For we know him that hath said, Vengeance belongeth unto me, I will recompense, saith the Lord. And again, The Lord shall judge his people.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

New Disclaimer

 

Death, evil, mortality, and divine purpose are considered, today.  A “Yahoo! Answers” fighter using the ID “Complex Maker” (Level 7 with 29,956 points, a member since November 20, 2010) posted the following:

 

Why did God make it everything has to die someday isn’t he the one that’s evil?

 

THE BATTLE AXE:  Not Images Used in Worship? (09/14/2014)—(5.)  The use of images and physical materials to express belief, and for believers to identify themselves to one another is not idol worship.  While objects may be set apart (we say, consecrated, sanctified) for exclusive use in holy service (e.g., crosses used in sacred procession, prayer chambers, holy ground, fragrant substances and their incense burners), among Christians, no inanimate object or thing is exalted as though it contains, or acts on behalf of a deity.  Christian symbols are not to be confused with occult objects fashioned to permit human alteration and control through magic.  Included are such devises as amulets, candles, lucky charms, gem stones, and talismans.  Like Aaron’s rod that budded, the rod of GOD that was used by Moses was a device to make visible divine authority and sacred election as well as the active presence of GOD. 

(6.)  In the same way Christians are not confused or embarrassed to see film actors who portray biblical characters in movies and TV programs, because they understand the process is not one of making false claims for reverence and worship, believers do not see paintings and other imaginative depictions of Jesus as being counterfeits, idols, or misrepresentations of divinity.  There are ordinary objects that have been used to trigger operations of the faith that resides within believers.  For example,  aprons and handkerchiefs were used by the apostles of the early church when healing; icons have been used; blessed beads and cords have been used when reciting psalms and other prayer cycles; and the cup used for the Lord’s Supper was venerated as a holy grail.  Even so, at no time were such objects identified as having value apart from the divine purpose of salvation, or the imparted Spirit that indwells the entire body of believers, the Holy Ghost.  Rather than human institutions and man-made objects, those created of GOD through the process of interaction focused upon Christ are the true repository for divine power and presence.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  So these things shall be for a statute of judgment unto you throughout your generations in all your dwellings.  Whoso killeth any person, the murderer shall be put to death by the mouth of witnesses:  but one witness shall not testify against any person to cause him to die.  Moreover ye shall take no satisfaction for the life of a murderer, which is guilty of death:  but he shall be surely put to death.  And ye shall take no satisfaction for him that is fled to the city of his refuge, that he should come again to dwell in the land, until the death of the priest.  So ye shall not pollute the land wherein ye are:  for blood it defileth the land:  and the land cannot be cleansed of the blood that is shed therein, but by the blood of him that shed it.  Defile not therefore the land which ye shall inhabit, wherein I dwell:  for I the LORD dwell among the children of Israel.  (Numbers 35:  29-34, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Why Believers Fear (09/09/2014);  Freedom of Foul Speech? (09/10/2014); On Death and Pain (05/08/2014); A “Good” Verse? (05/09/2014); Resurrection from the Dead? (04/23/2014); Not A Matter Of Opinion? (04/24/2014); Sin Causes Death? (02/04/2014); Succession (02/05/2014)

 

“Complex Maker”, where you are able to shift your thinking to see from a different point of view, here are a few ideas that have come from GOD that should be useful:

(1.)  Life is GOD’s intent, however, death is GOD’s tool.  Death is not simply a punishment for sin, or a way to condemn those who make mistakes.  Death is used to cleanse and continue the earth as a sphere of life; and death furthers the dynamic of life that is change and movement generated by diversity and imbalance.  Death as a consequence in divine judgment permits mankind a portion of the consciousness and experience had by divinity; and reveals the otherwise unseen compassion, integrity, reliability, and righteousness of GOD.

(2.)  As understood among Christian believers, the word “evil” does not mean “bad”, “sinful” or “wicked”.  In the holy writings GOD proclaims:  I form the light, and create darkness:  I make peace, and create evil:  I the Lord do all these things (Isaiah 45:  7, KJV).  We speak of divine evil as calamity; catastrophe; sudden, sweeping change; upheaval.  Human evil, then, is destruction; arbitrary, uncalled for, and unnecessary change; change that provides no balance or benefit.

(3.)  The childish complaint that “GOD won’t let us have our way” is false.  GOD does allow mankind to challenge his environment, to alter and question the boundaries for human existence.  Even so, many of the boundaries must remain in place for the sake of divine order, and to allow mankind to have clarity, focus, stability, and value.

There is far more to be said, correctly understood, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (4.)  Death is only one observable fact of the full divine plan for our universe.  In addition to death, through Jesus Christ, there are ongoing sacred operations for correction, healing, divine love, redemption, resurrection, salvation, sanctification, and eternal life.  Following final judgment, mortality will no longer exist.  Mankind will be transformed, and become both immortal and incorruptible to live with Christ upon the earth.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

Covenant, judgment, and the armies of ancient Israel are topics, today.  Also, there is more on anointing for sacred service.  A “Yahoo! Answers” writer using the ID “Elvis” (Level 7 with 73,529 points, a member since August 29, 2013) posted the following:

 

Why did God order Joshua to smite (kill) everyone in Al? 

JS 8:22-25 “With the Lord’s approval, Joshua utterly smites the people of Ai, killing 12,000 men and women, so that there were none who escaped”.

God don’t seem very nice to me.

 

THE BATTLE AXE:  Anointed? (04/28/2014)—(5.)  The formula for compounding a holy anointing oil is recorded within the Scriptures.  However, those who would create supplies of the sacred oil for secular use, or selfish pleasure were to be excommunicated, and put out of the congregation of Israel.  Like the prescription for incense to be burned within the tabernacle (later the temple), the formula for anointing oil included a number of spices mixed together in specific proportions by weight.  Along with blood (the device used to distribute life essence—we say, breath, spirit, word—throughout flesh), holy ointment was applied to the ark of the testimony, the altars, the utensils, vessels, and those who would minister as priests.  Moses received a peculiar anointing as prophet by abiding within the presence of GOD for forty days and nights in Mount Sinai.  When he returned among the people, his face appeared to shine, and continued to emit glory from GOD.  When Jesus completed a similar act abiding in the mountains for forty days and nights, the Savior was challenged and tested by Satan; and did not return among mankind displaying glory.  It was at his transfiguration, when Moses and Elijah appeared with him, that he was first seen and witnessed manifesting divine glory.  At his appearing to harvest the earth, and remove all those who will continue as joint-heirs having eternal life, Jesus will appear in three-fold glory:  his own, the Father’s, and that of the holy angels.  See Exodus 30:  22-38, Exodus 34:  27-35, Matthew 17:  1-9, Mark 9:  2-10 and Luke 9:  26, KJV.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Hear the word of the LORD, ye children of Israel:  for the LORD hath a controversy with the inhabitants of the land, because there is no truth, nor mercy, nor knowledge of God in the land.  By swearing, and lying, and killing, and stealing, and committing adultery, they break out, and blood toucheth blood.  Therefore shall the land mourn, and every one that dwelleth therein shall languish, with the beasts of the field, and with the fowls of heaven; yea, the fishes of the sea also shall be taken away.  (Hosea 4:  1-3, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Sacrificial Relationships? (10/23/2013); Of War and Judgment (10/08/2013); Heart, Brain or Spirit? (10/09/2013); Jericho Justified? (07/02/2013); Theoretical Forgiveness? (07/03/2013); Why Did The Judges Fight? (10/19/2012); The Spirit is Willing (10/20/2012)

 

“Elvis”, here are a few points you have missed that are necessary for correct understanding of the accounts of Joshua, and the armies of GOD:

(1.)  The primary purpose for “invasion” of the Promised Land was not conquest and a “land grab.”  The tribes of Jacob were herders and a people who used land for grazing and pastoral living.  GOD is to be acknowledged as the creator of the armies of Israel, for the Holy One counseled their generals (first Moses, then Joshua); determined who would serve; equipped all those who would go to combat; and provided strategy and tactics.

(2.)  The people of Canaan had prospered for many years, because they were nations in sacred covenant with GOD.  However, they gradually embraced idolatry and the worship of false gods, and repeatedly violated their sacred contracts.   All the details of their betrayal of GOD and sin against divinity are not recorded.  However, we may use “common sense” and a “child’s imagination” to figure out exactly what they might have done enough to upset GOD to the point of demanding their extinction.

(3.)  The armies of Israel were to be an instrument of divine judgment that would utterly destroy the arrogance, pride, and wickedness of the false covenant partners.  Sin is not very nice, and opposes the continued existence of divine law, of the divine Law Giver, of divine order established for the universe through divine law, and of men and women like me and you.

There is a lot more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (4.)  GOD is being revealed to created beings and living creatures as a God of Judgment.  The wrath of GOD against sin is a permanent aspect of divinity (like faith, forgiveness, holiness, joy, longsuffering, love, righteousness, and wisdom).  Divine love and wrath are in balance with all the other features of sprit matter within the makeup of GOD, and is not simply emotions or feelings that come and go.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your standing as a genuine believer.

For thus saith the Lord GOD; I will even deal with thee as thou hast done, which hast despised the oath in breaking the covenant.  Nevertheless I will remember my covenant with thee in the days of thy youth, and I will establish unto thee an everlasting covenant.  (Ezekiel 16:  59-60, KJV)

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC