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Disturbing and Unacceptable Attitudes?
General James Green, June 17, 2011
ONE DEAN of a respectable college wrote: “Divine inspiration works in a myriad of ways….there are instances when its influence is so apparent that to deny it would be like denying the brilliance of the full moon.” It would do our critics well to consider this, for they pick-and-choose what Scriptures they like, telling us they are “God breathed,” but others, e.g., the judgment/punishment ones, they consider not inspired. In fact, they are embarrassed at the things I bring up in my articles. They actually believe that I am “demon-inspired” and have an infatuation with death! NO! I am in the habit of understanding God's Word in the light of its meaning (as best as I can).
WHILE ISAIAH (Isa 40:28-31) mentions this, and it is true in one sense, the Scriptures themselves can be understood if we seek for it. And I will admit, no one FULLY understands God or His ways, how could we? But there is no way we can’t see, in His Word, that God's nature consists of both “love” and “hate.” There are many things God HATES, and there are many things He LOVES, but for us to hate what He loves or to love what He hates is really the epitome of stupidity.
MANY CHRISTIANS wrongly believe that the God of the O.T. is not of the same character we find in the N.T. They ask us why we teach from the Old so much. Well, the O.T., with all its DISTURBING characteristics and unacceptable attitudes (for them), nevertheless contains a vast number of Sacred Scriptures which cannot be (humanly speaking) explained, so our critics explain them away. But if we have God's Holy Spirit we see things in an entirely different light (hence the warfare between “flesh” and “Spirit”). Are we to judge God's Warnings and His punishments as non-inspired? Or will we accept them as the result of Divine promptings? I do.
OH HOW WE LOVE THEM! (Matt. 5:1-12). Then we pass on from “Blessed are….” to “the teaching about salt and light, the higher righteousness, anger and reconciliation, adultery, divorce, oaths and retaliation, love for enemies, etc.”
Jesus makes it plain (Matt. 5:17) that He did not “come to destroy the (O.T.) law, or the prophets,” for He knew both were ordained by His Father and was good. He finished up with, “I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill.” Thank you, Jesus.
Surely some of the things (like “shadows” and “types”) under the O.T. law have been dropped, but never any of its ethical and moral principles—these are binding upon ALL believers from generation to generation. There is much that could be written here, but what we see Jesus doing is fulfilling what the O.T. spoke about. And one can’t just make the Sermon on the Mount their defense against God's WRATHFUL side.
Even our beloved John 3:16 verse, which reveals the heart and purpose of God’s love for the lost, contains the word “perish”—the too-often forgotten word which points to the DREADFUL REALITY of ETERNAL PUNISHMENT (see Matt. 10:28, which our critics are really embarrassed at). What do they do with that verse, spoken by Jesus, inspired? “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Yes, I’ve heard all the arguments from our “love only” friends, but there’s no way around this: it speaks of eternal DAMNATION, not cremation or annihilation as they so wrongly teach (write for our 4 Hell booklets).
“Eternal life” and “perishing” are both ETERNAL. “Eternal death” is simply ETERNAL SEPARATION from the blessing side of God.
Figurative or Literal?
REALIZE that the Bible has its very own language and grammar. Grammar has to do with the basic elements for understanding the relationships of words and word groupings in a language. It, as scholars point out, consists of morphology (the systematic analysis of classes and structures of words—inflections of nouns, conjugations of verbs, etc.) and syntax (the arrangements and interrelationships of words in larger constructions). I’m not giving my readers a lesson on how to read their Bibles, but it does make a difference to understand what the authors (of the Bible) had in mind to his audience, what they intended to get across by using certain words. Were their statements meant to be literal or figurative? As we know the Bible uses a lot of symbolisms when describing significant persons, places, events, concepts and customs.
The exegetical task is important—the task of “bringing about an encounter between people in this time and the Word of God, written in entirely different languages during an entirely different era.” We certainly can’t use the word “gay” like we once did, and it, “gay,” did not mean “homosexual” in Biblical times. One trick our “no eternal punishment” friends use is giving us any one meaning (in Gk) of the word “eternal”—they use it to mean “a time or age”, but it also means “endless or never-ending”, which always is used in that context when describing one’s final abode (for the lost). Take the word “sword”, it can mean (lit.) a “sword of steel” or it can mean “sword of the Spirit” (fig.).
Slay or Save
OUR FEARFUL FRIENDS who never would dare teach or preach on God's judgment makes a swipe at the book of Joshua (O.T.), where he is commanded to SLAY men, women, children, even beasts! They compare Joshua (O.T. Jesus type!) to Jesus who commands us to love our enemies. (Joshua 6 and Matt. 5). I could take you all through the O.T. and show you where carnal warfare was literally used; the same can be said of the spiritual warfare (fig.) we find in the N.T.
The question asked is “Are we suppose to accept them all as ‘the Word of God?’” Yes! It is really dumb to think that God (O.T.) was not in His rightful mind back then, but He is (N.T.) now! I’ll remind our readers that the O.T. was bloody, but this does not rule out God's judgments/punishments in the New. Have you forgotten 70 A.D. predicted by the Prince of Peace, Jesus Himself? (Isa. 9), Note the words “to establish it (Kingdom of God) and to uphold it with JUSTICE and RIGHTEOUSNESS” AND God's judgments/punishments are all part of it.
The LORD was just as merciful and loving in the O.T. (see Isa. 40:1-5, 9-11) as He is in the New.
TRUE, THERE were imprecations against adversaries (as I’ve already covered this), rather SAVAGE ones I might add, but if we believe that the LORD was in charge of all things on the other side of the Cross, then we must believe He had a good reason for doing what He did, personally or through men/armies.
A good example is Deuteronomy 7:16 — “And thou shalt consume all the people which the LORD thy God shall deliver thee; thine eye shall have no pity upon them: neither shalt thou serve their gods; for that will be a snare unto thee.” “Consume (kill!) ALL the people”? Isn’t that rather EXTREME? Well, the “ites” in the land were idol worshippers, (7:4, 5) and sex offenders (like homosexuals, adulterers, were given to beast sex, etc. (see Lev. 18:1-30). Those people were “cut off” because of their sinful ABOMINATIONS (hey America, do you commit the same sins today, even sexing with beasts?). Since God created man to be upright and they do the opposite, He is rightly justified in His WARFARE against them.
Lev. 18:27 tells us “For all these ABOMINATIONS have men of the land done, which were before you, and the land is defiled.” Now America has a president that is “pink crazed,” pushing hard for sodomy (GLBTQ) to cover this land, defile even the very young—THIS IS AN ABOMINATION! What will the LORD do to this nation?
Take note of Psalm 68:22-23—can we really approve of such a thing? Humanly speaking, no, but from God's perspective, seeing all the “evil” men do, He has every right to execute imprecations against His adversaries.
Who Are We??
THIS IS THE CURRENT sin—man playing God. What disrespect, what arrogance? Instead of celebrating the REALITY of the ever-present higher power—God Almighty—men have usurped His authority, deitized themselves and now have taken control of things (or so they think!), even thinking they have the power to control God's weather.
I’ll say it, “We are meant to be under a Theocracy, not a democracy.” America claims “In God We Trust,” but does she really mean this? Instead of promoting God's Rule, you promote Man’s Rule….to achieve—a means to achieve security, stability, and prosperity for the ENTIRE world; to assist newly formed democracies (usually by bloodshed) in implementing democratic principles (not Biblical ones). America assists democracy advocates around the world to establish vibrant democracies in their own countries (like in Iraq!) and identify and denounce regimes that deny their citizens the right to choose their leaders in elections that are “free, fair and transparent” (HA! Like the election that happened with the current Prez who is NOT a legal U.S. citizen, who has very little political savvy but talks BIG!, who has a pure Socialist/Communist mindset, and who supports the Muslims whose goal is to DESTROY America and take over the WHOLE world and institute Sharia law, etc., etc.??!!).
DANGER: Watch Out!
IT IS WELL SAID that the danger of democracy lies in the ironic fact that it will ULTIMATLEY NOT TOLERATE ANY OPPOSITION….and we are seeing this “spirit” sweeping this nation, hate crime laws and all. Thought police are everywhere, even in your churches.
We cheer on America’s troops as they play “world police force” (no reflection on their fighting skills or their dedication/zeal) against those tyrannical regimes that are unlike us (democracy), yet America is every bit as bullish/brutish. Does this hit your red-white-and-blue nerve?
America once stood for freedom, it was a beacon of freedom for years and years, but here at home restrictions are being placed against one’s religious beliefs (genuine Christianity—we can’t freely speak out against homosexuality without getting Big Brother and gang really upset. I guess they prefer AIDS/STDS to kill off the very people they protect?).
ONE POLITICAL ANALYST has well said, “Unfortunately, we are not establishing freedom to worship the One True God, but we (the government) are creating the ‘god of freedom.”’
Some political analysts believe that democracy (the New World type) will become, in effect, a WORLD DICTATORSHIP!
Actually, the “demon” behind democracy is “self worship”!—the god of self is what we see on the rise, even in the so-called “Church” of God. The grand theme of today's political and religious fervor is the “love and comfort of self”: not the love of God, Jesus, His Word or His Will, but the love of the will of man. The anti-Christ is not just one man but MAN HIMSELF.
Peace, Peace, Peace
BUT WE ALL KNOW there is NO PEACE! And the way America goes about establishing “peace” is to go to WAR. Peace/freedom has become the mantra: it’s “Peace and freedom at all costs!”...even to the destroying of whole nations, if need be.
“THESE HAVE ONE mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast. These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings: and they that are with him are called, and chosen, and faithful” (Rev. 17:13-14, KJV).
These verses portray the current mindset: make WAR with the Lamb (Christ). And I will add, with his true followers, too. We are seeing the humanistic BEAST power degrading God's laws, standards, morals; even your “messiah,” Prez Obama, has introduced a bill in the United Nations to make it a crime to speak out against the (SIN!) of homosexuality.
THIS REALLY MAKES me laugh, the world’s people believing they can solve the world’s problems thru democracy. Well, America is a grand failure in solving its own problems.
As this country has been diseased with the “pink” disease, and “Political Correctness” has even enslaved its promoters, pray tell me how peace and freedom will prevail? REMOVE GOD FROM A NATION AND THE BEAST IS RELEASED.
“Stop emphasizing the importance of God's rule, and man over-emphasizes man’s nobility (whatever that means).” All this so-called “positive thinking” (apart from a true worship of Jesus Christ the Lord), self-esteem, consumption of every sort of evil, and all the other garbage this culture is given over to all spell DISASTER.
What of the mountain of problems America is faced with? What of all the SIN/CORRUPTION found in men? Society (now) believes that these unwanted things can be changed by analysis of SELF and thru “behavior modification programs” (and “legal” drugs, of course!). How come these things aren’t working?? WELL, AMERICA HAS DIVORCED HERSELF FROM HER LORD YEARS AND YEARS AGO!!
Actually all the “answers” this proud and rebellious nation has come up with compound the problems, causing more questions to be asked.
Some believe a nation without God's rule would be a utopia. Is that so? Look around and see the nations that have forgotten God—how they have become “spiritual slums…full of vermin.”
We need to realize that evil men are at work, although I don’t want to dwell upon all the hidden political agendas (some not so hidden) and all the conspiracies (there were conspiracies against the LORD in O.T. times: “And the LORD said unto me, A CONSPIRACY is found among the men of Judah, and among the people of Jerusalem. They are turned back to the iniquities of their forefathers, which refused to hear My Words; and they went after other gods to serve them….(they) have broken My Covenant….” (Jer. 11:9-10). Hello America!! How goes your conspiracy against God? YOU HAVE FORSAKEN GOD AND HIS WORD AND HAVE FILLED YOUR HEARTS AND MINDS WITH THE PANACEA CALLED “HUMANISTIC DEMOCRACY.”
What Will Be Your End?
I DON’T WANT TO LEAVE my readers in doubt as to what will be your end (for your backslidings). Jeremiah 11:11 gives us the answers: “Therefore thus saith the LORD, Behold, I will bring EVIL upon them, WHICH THEY SHALL NOT BE ABLE TO ESCAPE; and though they shall cry unto me, I WILL NOT HEARKEN UNTO THEM!” Do you sinners and haters of God really believe you WON’T be punished? Already America is being brought down, but you fools are just too drunk to perceive it—the American Titanic is sinking while the music plays on...but “the icy black waters will soon sober you up!”
GOD IS BOTH THE GOD OF LOVE AND JUDGMENT. His love demands justice. “Both love and justice demand a review of ALL men” (see Psa. 89:14, O.T.; Rom. 2:5-6, N.T.). We will receive our just rewards for what we have done, and not done, in this life (see Eph. 5:9-10; 1 Cor. 3:15).
WITH ALL THIS SAID, man may find God's Word and actions “DISTURBING AND UNACCEPTABLE.” But GOD is the One Who finds the same in man’s attitudes and actions. And I’ll grant you, He will have the final say so.
Since Christ died to take away the sins of the world (Jn. 1:29; 1 Cor. 15:3), He bore our sins in His own body on the cross (1 Pet. 2:24), and having suffered once for our sins (1 Pet. 3:18) and having manifested to take them (sins) completely away (1 Jn. 3:5), WHO BUT THE LAMB OF GOD HAS THE RIGHT TO DICTATE WHAT IS RIGHT AND WRONG, JUST AND UNJUST? Do you have this right? Does “democracy”? humanism?
Just because Christ did all this does not, of course, mean men will stop sinning and accept Him. But it does mean that WHEN MEN TURN FROM SIN TO CHRIST, THEIR SINS WILL BE FORGIVEN (see Col. 1:20-22; Eph. 2:16). From there we can make the long trek up the straight and narrow road of holiness to becoming more like Christ every day, gaining dominion over our sins.
Consider what I’ve written. Amen.
[Study material has been adapted from its original sources.]