Genesis 7-8 / Psalms 9-10 / Matthew 6
Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.
If the called son has to spend his whole life doing it, finding out how to be right with the Father is the only worthwhile endeavor. It's not an easy or obvious thing, because it's real if the calling has been initiated from a place that didn't originate within that one. Not from a desire to be someone or get something, which is the animal mode to think about what might be worthwhile (surviving forever) and then providing that for itself. When the Father has chosen one of the humans to become His possession, that calling is planted like a seed in his heart, which takes on a life of its own similar to how a seed grows—slowly and steadily, requiring much care and nurture for the life that has been planted. The life isn't a thing that the humans can just go out and get for themselves like a good job or respectful name.
But you, O God, do see trouble and grief;
you consider it to take it in hand.
The teachers of the law weren't trying to find out how to be pleasing to the Father or know who He was by what the law of Moses said about a persistent devotion not to the self which is the animal tendency to love, serve and worship its own plight because of the fear that lives in its heart. The heart of the law was toward the God of Israel first and forever, and caring for the brother who was an Israelite, especially when he couldn't care for himself. The humans who became leaders by promoting their selves apart from God's will wanted Him to be what they thought they could delineate He would be, something for them that would serve to promote their plight even further. They showed it by pretending to be doing things for God when they were only interested in exercising their right to satisfy their egotistical cravings to be honored and respected by the humans as something like a god amongst the others, and their financial cravings to have more wealth wrapped up around themselves to feel a little bit more insulated from their actual condition.
Jesus said to his disciples, "I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."
It's what the leaders of human institutions do when they stand up and presume to teach, but they just want to be noticed and honored by the humans like a god amongst them. It is a very strong lust to deny, especially after they've put all the effort into getting where they are. At that point all they can ever say is that they need to continue because they're "being used by god (of the self)," which I understand because it lives in us and we see it for what it is. The teacher shows us its desire to drag us away from what's right, to serve it by being led by it, being defined as a mere animal like all the other humans because of it. That powerful force of power is like any kind of lust that lives in the human heart to thrust itself forward and get whatever it can get for the survival of its self, in so many different ways.
Be careful not to do your `acts of righteousness' before men, to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven.
Why does the Son keep referring to their "Father who is in heaven?" Heavenly means spiritual as opposed to natural, bit isn't just a connotation of God being higher and better than man. He's trying to make them aware that God is secret on purpose, and has caused Himself to be hidden from the humans by design. However, he knew that the Father had specifically chosen these men to be able to see Him while the other humans hadn't been chosen, so they would see what these men were going to be able to see, because that secret life and identity of the Father was going to be revealed to them. It was a hard thing to grasp because the natural reality is opposed to such a pointed revelation in specific people, yet that is precisely what God has always been about, according to the scriptures that tell the story of His chosen people. Not just the Israelites, but everyone who knew God knew Him because His life and reality was specifically revealed in them, while the generic gods were clomped onto or disregarded by the whim and will of the humans. One consistent attribute about the living God is that He is never generic, so He doesn't just pop up in any of the systems that the humans create in His name. He is overridingly secret and not found out unless H wants and chooses to be found out, by that specifically revelation to whomever He has chosen to reveal His life and the reality of His existence.
So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.
The self-serving and self-preserving animal makes its host think that only the bad people are prone to these kinds of behavior. The message of the Son is that it is a human thing to do, not a flaw in those who are morally inferior but something that lives in the humans to make them what they are to God—unlike Him and what He wants from His own offspring because they resemble the animal which is driven by instinct to merely survive, and everything it becomes springs from that source.
And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.
The warning here is that those men who had been chosen to become leaders of God's secretly chosen and called people shouldn't be like what these false leaders became, who sat in Moses' seat but didn't do what Moses did, who gave his life for the chosen people of God. Instead they were mere animals who did what animals naturally and instinctively do by looking out for their interests and making sure they were taken care of, while they neglected the oppressed and fatherless, the widows and orphans. God is on the side of those who are neglected by the humans. He is the helper of those who are reviled and scorned by the humans. His kingdom will be filled with those kind of humans who were always last amongst the humans but will be first in His kingdom, which is sort of the turning upside down of the natural reality, the undoing of what the humans do.
The kingdom of God does not come with your careful observation, nor will people say, `Here it is,' or `There it is,' because the kingdom of God is within you.
Finding the secret kingdom of the unseen Father and obeying the voice of the teacher, which is the food that nourishes that invisible life so that it grows within is learning how to be pleasing to the Father. That is most simply because when the kingdom of the Father grows inside the son, the evil must necessarily be eroding, or else the life of the Father (the kingdom of God filled with His sons) could not be growing. Becoming more a part of the son than the nature he was born with, what became set into him when he matured and crossed over from the point of growing into the point where one is only dying (puberty is that cross over period, aging is the reflection of that slow march toward death). One cannot get to the Father by any natural means or process. The invitation and way to Him was known to some of the humans in the first century, but soon after its close the knowledge of that way started to fade away from the humans' reach and became what it is today.
And Noah built an altar to the LORD and he took from every clean cattle and every clean fowl and offered burnt offerings on the altar.
This is the story of a starting over, of cleansing the order and starting fresh. I happened a lot in the OT, and it happened last in the events that happened starting with John and Jesus. What they gave went into captivity a long time ago, and the world has been in darkness ever since, waiting for the next time that the Father might interact with the humans.
And the LORD smelled the fragrant odor and the LORD said in His heart, "I will not again damn the soil on humankind's score. For the devisings of the human heart are evil from youth."
Since God bonded the human and the animal together to give them the same consciousness, it became yet another race altogether than that what was originally intended for the human. Before it had the choice to only know good, after it knew good and evil—good when it is young and innocent, ignorant of the evil that rules the human heart, the evil it becomes when it grows up into a mature animal, savvy about the world and its systems and the way of the humans, which catapults it into its participation in that system of surviving in a competitive and hostile world.
Go into the ark, you and your whole family, because I have found you righteous in this generation.
God decided not to completely destroy the world again, but to select and choose men out of their generations who would become His. They would walk with Him and He would be their God. They would accomplish His purpose in the world, despite it being ruled by the animals who hated Him and His ways, who loved their own way, which is the way of the serpent. They love their systems because they can build their own self favor into those systems, which are skewed to represent their interests, which must always be corrupt. Political, religious and social systems always have built into them the conditions of partiality that benefit the founders or maintainers of the system. That fully aligns with the animal consciousness, which always acts toward its own preservation at the expense of anyone else. It cannot act any other way. That is why, for instance, one cannot be a member of any of these groups which have been founded, formed and are maintained by partial men without looking, acting, or being as the majority would like one to be or act.
Whether citizens of a particular society or members of any sort of institution, country club, church, congregation, temple or ecclesia, the same rule applies to all: if you don't look, talk or act correctly, according to the specific group's rules—written or unwritten—you will not survive as a member of that group because you are a threat to the group and its need to promote its own welfare, which is just the same kind of thing found in each of them individually, extended out to the group. The nature of animals, individually and collectively, will always act to include those who are not a threat to its or its community's survival, and get rid of those who are, and they're always able to justify their action.
That's merely a fact of how animals operate; not necessarily a good or bad thing according to the natural creation, just how they react and function in certain situations, whether wolves, hyenas or humans they all just need to survive as long and best that they can. What the Son did by denying that impulse is to turn the natural reality on its head by denying it, by not surviving at any or all cost, as is the instinctive impulse.
We recognize the hypocrisy and workings of the animals not so that we can feel better our selves (just another survivalistic animal urge), but so that we do not fall into the same behavior trap to which they are totally imprisoned. We have a choice, being freed from the animal's total domination of our consciousness, to say no to its impulses, fears and inclinations. That is the process of unlearning the way of the animal, and learning the way of the son, the way that Adam was intended to be.
You hear, O LORD, the desire of the afflicted;
you encourage them, and you listen to their cry,
That will mean certain losses of the things that the world loves and what the humans constantly strive for. It will mean that this world and its ways are not our ways as we take on the position of afflicted and oppressed stranger to the world instead of friend—what we were before. All the different ways that men learn to be when they grow up into animal maturity, things which naturally become part of their consciousness—mostly for the sake of survival in many modes—will start to fall away from the son as he becomes foolish to the ability to be savvy amongst the world's inhabitants. The son will become as though he were retarded, unfamiliar with things that any grown animal takes for granted. He seeks to become what the humans overlook and despise: poor in spirit, one who mourns, meek, one who hungers and thirsts for how to be right with the Father, merciful, pure and honest in his heart, and a peacemaker. For becoming any or all of that, he isn't honored by the humans but one of those who are persecuted because of searching for righteousness.
The son knows that without the life of God living in him he is destitute and without hope. He has to always count on that to provide him sustenance. If the Lord goes away he is nothing, and because he is away from the Lord now, he feels poor, meek and mournful, more so as he becomes aware of his condition as loved, yet not fully known. As he understands the nature of the consciousness that keeps him from knowing and loving his Father and Brother, he cannot help but incrementally adopt the identity of a man of sorrows.
That's a kind of curse for the son who is alive to God and still in this body of flesh—that he knows who he is and what he has, but he cannot realize that now. He must patiently endure, with the hope and the gifts he is given to do that, which will be adequate to allow it. With those he does the work that he is given to do on the Father's behalf—to believe in the teacher who must live in him, who allows him to be transformed from animal to his new position, the new creature modeled after the second Adam. With this new consciousness comes new aspirations, and he is gradually able to be what the animals cannot be—merciful, peacemaking and pure in heart as he hungers and thirsts for the things he has only tasted, what the world thinks is nothing.
You will listen to the entreaty of the lowly, O LORD, You will make their hearts firm;
You will incline your ear to champion the orphan and the downtrodden,