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THE KNELL OF DOOM
I KNOW writing about "doom" upsets people. Well, I wish I didn't have to approach these kinds of subjects either. But let's face the truth, this nation (USA) is far from God, and unless we REPENT of our evil doings, God's WRATH will pay us a visit even more so. I would rather have His kindness, forgiveness, and mercy.
The American church cannot go on playing the harlot on God. Neither can the state go on with its evil agendas, its anti-Christ campaigns and not anger the LORD.
Men have their agendas and God has His; either for blessings or judgments. It depends upon what WE THE PEOPLE do: obey or disobey.
We here at Fence Lake have been in a long season of intercession for this backslidden nation. We have been repenting over the way this nation has turned from godliness (some resemblance at least) unto godlessness. All one has to do is go to the Bible, read, ponder, see how God operates. Along with His love, mercies, longsuffering, forgiveness, we also find that He hates, lifts mercies, runs out of patience, and refuses to forgive…when any nation or individual pushes Him too far. So, let us go into our Bible study.
"Therefore the LORD shall set up ADVERSARIES…" One of those "adversaries" is mentioned in chapter 10, verse 5: "O Assyrian, the rod (for punishment) of mine anger, and the staff in their hand is mine indignation." Here we have a cruel nation God chooses to be His weapon "…against an hypocritical nation (Israel), and against the people of My wrath will I give him a charge to take the spoil, and to take the prey, and to tread them down like mire (filth) of the streets" (v. 6). But, wasn't Israel the "apple of God's eyes?" Yes, when they walked in obedience (see our two magazines entitled "THE WRATH of GOD”).
"Shall there be evil in a city, and the Lord hath not done it?" (evil=Hebrew word ra; ra=“adversity, natural disasters, sword etc.,” not moral evil/sin). Does God employ evil spirits, evil men, His wrathful nature? Yes! He can even make the wrath of man praise Him, and He can restrain the wrath of men. He keeps back evil men/wrathful nature till the occasion presents itself.
God's ultimate purpose for His punishment is for repentance and reclamation. He turns up the fires of Hell on a backslidden people, a nation, in order to purify it once again (—if they have known the LORD beforehand). America will taste of this "Hell on Earth" if she does not REPENT!!
Have you ever wondered why America keeps going down, down, down? Why the government (presently) is so anti-Christ/anti-Bible? The oppositions can be explained: America has taken unto herself many, many idols, accepts unnatural sex-sins, murders its very own, is engaged in unlawful wars etc., etc. This nation used to be concerned about other tyrannical nations, and the way they treated their people. HA! We need not look beyond our borders dear ones, LOOK WITHIN. God has "set up the adversaries" against us…because we do not want Him to rule over us. The present government is literally in BATTLE ARRAY against all things pertaining to God's Word…endeavoring to get all Christians ensnared in their steps, to frustrate our purposes, and to make our life a misery. Their detestation for God and His Word knows no bounds. They spread their lies and filth all around without shame. None! This is not chance; this is designed, calculated, implemented by evil men/women (even church folks are helping out).
Pray for discerning eyes that look beneath surfaces, and find the spring of causes. You'll discover that unconfessed SIN/SINS are the main cause.
Since the church has now (for the most part) set their hearts against the Lord, the Spirit, and the Word in a deadly attitude, God has "set up the adversaries of evil men/women against us (not us personally who are trying to live right).”
THERE IS NO MISTAKE ABOUT THE MANY FORMS OF OPPOSITION; DETERMINATENESS IS OBVIOUS. If we look at all this in the light of Scripture, we will know that we are brought to chastening and sobriety (and hopefully refinement) by attritions and oppositions that are, from a human point of view, unaccountable. "I thought the government was for ‘we the people’?" you say. Can it be that you are no longer for the Lord and you are now reaping what you've sown? Yes.
This is the key, Jeremiah the prophet recorded the Word of the LORD: "But this thing commanded I (the LORD) them (Israel), saying, 'Obey My voice, and I will be your God, and ye shall be My people: and walk ye in all the ways that I have commanded you that it may be well unto you'" (Jer. 7:23). Is it going well with America?
You see, the Bible never hesitates to trace whats, whens, whys, hows, wheres, and their meanings back to the LORD Himself. Don't play DUMB! It is God (He does use men/women) who sends the plagues, the pestilences, the evil darkness, the disasters, the sword etc. He is in control of both cursings and blessings. He remains the author of providence.
The problem, and I do mean PROBLEM, is that Americans believe themselves to be beyond God's judgments. They have this (hubris) pride that "we are God's people" (even through they live like the devil). Frankly, we have amused ourselves by deceiving ourselves—by thinking America will never face any political/religious/social epidemic. Too bad. We are facing them RIGHT NOW!!!
Arrangement with Death
I wish this were not true. But when a nation, any nation (or individual), forsakes the WAY of the Lord, death is the alternative (spiritually or naturally). And aren't we seeing this right before our very eyes?
"But, after all, above all, and beneath all, is the mysterious life, the omnipotence of God, the judgment between right and wrong, that plays upon the universe as upon an obedient instrument—now evoking from it black frowning thunder, and now making it tremble with music that children love…" (minister in London). Yes, God is behind it all. He is ever overseeing the events of this world—good and bad.
"The Syrians before, and the Philistines behind (both pagan nations being called into war against backslidden Israel); and they shall devour Israel with open mouth. For all this His anger is not turned away, but His hand is stretched out still."
Make no mistake, God can and will use whosoever or whatsoever to do His work—for good or bad. What horror, what terror of judgment fell upon sinful Israel. What horror/terror will fall upon good ol’ "Christian" America?...upon unrepentant men/women?
America prides herself on foreign invasions. Will we be invaded? For sure, we are currently under attack from anti-Christ demon forces within. Sadly, the beating Israel took was unavoidable. Israel, in her pride exclaimed, "The bricks are fallen down, but we will build with hewn stones…" (Isa. 9:10). I heard this after the double-perfect storm (“Sandy") hit NJ/NY. The people looking upon the utter ruin of their beachfront hones declared, "We will rebuild bigger and better." Ha! See if this will be the case or no.
Obduracy, which would be noble were it inspired by faith, caused Israel to boast against the LORD. But their defiance was not noble whatsoever, neither is America's. They and we [America today] "glory" in our defiance, our obduracy, our iniquity.
The death bells are yet to toll here in America—but they surely will IF we do not REPENT and RETURN to God.
Even after the enemy struck Israel, God's wrath was still not appeased. Much of Israel was beyond salvation. Have we reached this place (see 9:17)? How will America act when God's storm breaks upon us? Will our ruthless stupidity, our conscienceless greed, our merciless selfishness, our "pious" murder save us?
Verse 13 tells the tale: "For the people turneth not unto Him that smiteth them, neither do they seek the LORD of hosts." Then Isaiah records what God will do. Read it please. America is RIGHT NOW in the arrangement of detail—will our unconfessed sins bring His severe judgment or will our confessed sins turn them away? Let's pray for the latter.
"Refrain" or "Not Refrain"?
These are the words before us (Isa. 9:12). The words, "not turned away" convey the meaning "not refrain." In v. 17, this same word is repeated, "For all this His anger is not turned away." Also in v. 21, it is repeated. Does Isaiah repeat himself on purpose? Yes!
This is not the end of the matter; cpt. 10, verse 4 repeats this once again. These solemn words roll in upon our attention. Haven't you noticed? What is the cause? There must be some cause for this. Is it concealed? Nay! We have it four times. Let us make ourselves acquainted with this "cause," lest we judge God unfairly—wondering why His hand should be stretched out in judgment, rather than blessing. Let is be said and understood here and now: unconfessed sins mount up till the STORM of FURY breaks upon a nation/an individual.
As already stated, verse 9:13 gives us one of the reasons for this. Instead of accepting the "rod of correction," Israel (now America) pushed it away—at least she tried. A submissive/repentant heart will go far with God; if not, judgment is certain (see Isa. 5:24-30 also). Here comes a terrible mobile desert force…marching, riding, running to do battle for the LORD of Hosts (armies) against the people of God who have become idol-worshippers, haters of each other, and of God, and His Word, His prophets etc. This menacing pagan force—combined force—these disciplined warriors have one thing in mind: TO STRIKE ISRAEL!
It is all intensely dramatic. History has repeated this scene many times. If the sins named in these chapters are indeed the causes of His anger, we had better repent now, for these same named sins have multiplied here in America. They have been tolerated by the Lord, but not condoned. His mercies have run out America. As long as America decrees unrighteous decrees (like same-sex marriage, abortion, unlawful war, and whoremongering to name a few), God's anger builds up (10:1). I like the way the Moffatt translation puts it: "…those who issue harsh decrees, planning orders that oppress." BIG men/women robbing the weak of their God-given rights and defrauding the poor of their dues. Yet, on the other hand, haven't we invited this oppression upon ourselves by forsaking the Lord? I know not all are guilty of this, but too many are. The church has her lurid sins as well as the state. It is these sins that SAP the moral strength of a nation, of an individual. Is not America sickly and weak?
His awful judgments, dear ones, may be deferred, but never concealed until enough repentance comes forth. ARE YOU REPENTING? Since God's divine Word has gone forth in this land UNHEEDED, there MUST come a day of reckoning…and that day is now upon us—whether by internal revolution, foreign powers, God's nature; it matters not. By the immutable moral law of God, evil and evil persons SHALL BE JUDGED!
God knows both church and state have had (still have) BAD leadership. Isaiah points this out in 9:16: "for those who lead this people lead them astray, and those who are led by them are swallowed up." Ah, here we have part of the problem (see 3:12 also).
Failure of its leadership in both vision and integrity can (and does) quickly bring a society to confusion and disaster. Look at today's church and state leadership—BASTARDS and BACKSLIDERS, SELF-LOVERS, and SIN-LOVERS. But we must conclude that the people love it so. The government robs the people; the church leaders do the same. The pagan armies killed with vengeance and frown; the US gov./church kills with a smile. Both are ruthless in their tyrannies. It matters not what name they are called by—Sennacherib, Nebuchadrezzar, Pharaoh Neco, Obama, or any number of today's televangelists.
Today's problems are deeper than any question concerning foreign policy, economics, or defense; it has to do with our lack of faith in God and obedience to Him. The unconfessed and unrepented of sins of this nation cause a devastating possibility to hang over the land like a dark cloud. The atheism of force looms close and ugly. NO matter. Things can turn for good IF we'll but confess, repent, and mean it. We can defy all this, or we can repent. One thing for sure is that the sovereignty of justice and righteousness can not be mocked. I know many will mock this article. Go ahead— SEE WHO GETS MOCKED.
In Times Past
One only has to read Biblical history to see how the Almighty used pagan nations (and His weather) as a club and a whip upon the backs of His erring people. Not only His people, but upon the pagan themselves. The very nations He used to punish His wayward nation with ruthless brutality, God punished in the end.
It is no new thing for God to employ men/weather/pestilence etc., scourging those delinquent nations…in His timing. It won't do you any good to crowd God out of your minds. He IS. Let us be wise, place Him in the middle of our lives, let Him occupy our inner land, let love rule once again. Men in this hour, and in this generation have given themselves over to a multitude of gods.
They have divorced the Living God and married themselves unto alien gods…thus bringing unto themselves incessant miseries coming closer and closer to an all-out CATASTROPHE of some sort…a wrathful visitation of JAH. But, not all judgments are loud/violent, some are silent (germ warfare?), unknown, and yet as inexorable as the Sword that Cuts, the Fire that Burns, and the Hammer that Smashes. His judgments can come in forms like HIV/AIDS, or like a destroying fever/disease, consuming the body. They can come in the form of letting the nation destroy itself by its own greed and selfishness. MORAL DETERIORATION UNCHECKED CAN WASTE AWAY ANY NATION. A NATION THAT HAS GROWN DISTANT FROM GOD, CARELESS ABOUT THE THINGS OF GOD, WILL INVITE THE KNELL OF DOOM UPON ITSELF.
Israel / America
Isa. 9:17 points out that Israel had become hypocritical, an evil doer, and full of folly. Moral folly will destroy a nation as much as war. Isa. 32:6 says, "For the vile person will speak villainy and his heart will work iniquity, to practice hypocrisy, and to error against the LORD, to make empty the soul of the hungry; and he will cause the drink of the thirsty to fail" (see also vv. 7, 8). Boy, this sounds like America. A well-ordered society will have (Godly) wisdom and nobility of character (sure, it will also contain the fools and the wicked, but they will not rule). America is RULED by FOOLS who love FOLLY. This raises the issue decisive for human destiny—will the fools lead [the nation/world] into total destruction? Are we Christians going to gamble with the possibility of obliterating this nation by our slackness/our lack of repentance? Or, are we going to mount up with wings of the eagle, recovering a "saving faith" in Holy Ghost prayer/authority for the rebuilding of a fallen nation?
It is not impossible if we work at it. But we can't just wring our hands in despair, droop our heads in disgust. I'm not writing about an abstract speculation, but literally of survival—of life and death. This incredible destructive power coming from both church and state threatens the existence of this nation. We can't sit idly by allowing the enemies to completely have the field. God expects us—who are aware of it all—to fight for what is right.
It takes little imagination, at this point, not to see the impending danger awaiting this nation…which has (for the most part) abandoned God's laws/standards/ethics. OUR CHRISTIAN FAITH DEMANDS WE DO SOMETHING. The process of inner decay worsens daily. All that once was lovely, good, honorable, is slowly but surely wasting away…while hundreds of thousands of churches dot the landscape.
Millions who profess to be "Christian" play rather than pray. The stench of death is in every city, town, and township. "I don't want to hear anymore!!" I realize such things I write/teach/preach will win me no acclaim. Well, the authors of the Old and New Testaments faced the same thing. Jesus didn't win favor; only frowns and a crown (of thorns). It is human nature for men to shrink from distasteful truths—such as we're reading here in Isaiah, nevertheless, it is part of the price we must pay in the service of our Lord Jesus. In closing, let us not be afraid of the times. Sure they are ugly and mean. Let us not shy away from speaking the (odious!) truth when necessary…and it is necessary. We MUST invite Christ back into our churches, the government, and our personal lives. HE IS THE LIVING EMBODIMENT OF DIVINE QUALITIES THAT MAKES PEOPLE AND NATIONS NOBLE. It is not a burden to live under His Lordship—it is a privilege. This nation's idea of utopia (One World Government) does not include Jesus the Lord. This must be rejected. The nation or kingdom of right relationship with Christ Jesus WILL result in blessings, not cursings.
I realize a materialistic generation, as we have, is not given to much godly praise or thanksgiving; pride always silences praise. Rebellion always breeds rebels. The solution to the pollution is repentance revolution. Amen.
Note: The complete overthrow of Samaria, capital of Israel, by Sargon in 722-721 BC which Isaiah had behind him when he penned 10:9-11, at least most historians believe. This left nothing between Judah (capital was Jerusalem) and the Assyrians. There is much in 10:5-34 which suits the circumstances of Tiglath-pileseis invasion. Judah was well aware of the 10 Northern tribes of Israel being destroyed, but carried on with the same SINS; which eventually brought the king of Babylon as an invading army. Judah was destroyed as well. OUGHT WE NOT PAY HEED TO ALL THIS?
What are nations to God? Instruments in the hands of an angry God for both blessings and cursings. Isa. 10:7 tells us much: "Howbeit he (Assyrians king) meaneth not so, neither doth his heart think so; but it is in his heart to destroy and cut off nations not a few." This king was being used by God, but he thought it was himself. The unbridled lust for conquest is used and limited by Yahweh, but later wanes. His judgment also. This king boasts about "his" military power (vv. 8-11). He had vassal kings who had been conquered and incorporated into the Assyrian Empire. God allowed this to continue until a later point in time when this Empire was punished by God. Amen and Amen.