Exodus 23 / Psalm 77 / Mark 9
But they did not understand what he meant and were afraid to ask him about it.
This says a lot about who Jesus was—not some mush mouth nice guy who was all sweet, kind and "loving" as the modern definition of love attempts to characterize him as a milk-toast pushover who was nice and accepting to everyone all the time. Many times he is downright caustic with those who claimed to know the way to God so that they could benefit from the power and kudos that brought them.
Are you still so dull? Do you still not see or understand? Are your hearts hardened? Do you have eyes but fail to see, and ears but fail to hear? And don't you remember?
To his own disciples he at times wasn't all nice and easy going, but short and impatient that they were so dull and unseeing what seemed so clear to him. He called them satan, and dull to hear and understand his teaching. The fact that they were afraid to ask him about what he meant is an indication that he wasn't so easy and sweet with them all the time. He was clear about things as they were, according to the Father, and he taught these men about those things, but they couldn't get it because they were lifeless and dull.
The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life—only to take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.
He knew what he had to do, which the Father commanded him to do, and he was doing it because his purpose was real and true, which the Father had expressly told him. The temptation account was about *not* doing what the Father had told him, but doing what he wanted to do according to the animal that tried to get him to follow it. That personal commandment that Jesus the good Son was heeding wasn't just for those men. First it was for the Father's sake, then it was for the sake of the family of brother, all of whom Jesus considered alive, not dead, because they had been chosen by the Father to be living sons, as He is alive and has life within Himself, but nothing else does. The men were given to him as a living representation of all the brothers whom God had ever loved—like himself whom the Father revealed Himself and gave secret information to, that which He didn't reveal to anyone else like He revealed it to those whom He had chosen to be His, for His purpose.
"I tell you the truth, some who are standing here will not taste death before they see the kingdom of God come with power."
After six days Jesus took Peter, James and John with him and led them up a high mountain, where they were all alone. There he was transfigured before them. His clothes became dazzling white, whiter than anyone in the world could bleach them. And there appeared before them Elijah and Moses, who were talking with Jesus.
These men whom Jesus took up to the mountain saw the kingdom of God. What they was was the Son of God being transformed into something that he wasn't yet, as they had known him (just like them). They also saw two of God's sons, alive and talking with Jesus.
He is not the God of the dead, but of the living, for to him all are alive.
The kingdom of God is about living sons who are alive, as was displayed by the power of what the men were shown, which was one of the points of them being shown what they saw. Their brothers who went before them were just as alive as they themselves were, because they had been chosen by the Father to be alive, which is knowing the Father by having His reality revealed to them, expressly.
Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. I have brought you glory on earth by completing the work you gave me to do.
How we characterize the state of the sons of God is not important. Whether they are in the ground waiting to be resurrected or have already been isn't an important thing for us to be able to say we adhere to either way. The only thing that's good for is a human system, modeled after those who say that one must adhere to a correct conception of what their god is defined as, as per the system that the humans developed to be able to do it according to their ability to comprehend, what they mistakenly call "belief." Adhering to a publicly available set of facts construed to form a system that one could either embrace (what they have reduced "belief" to) or ignore as per what it obviously just is—yet another man-made system that has no bearing or consequence other than socially (what they call unbelief because it's a rejection not of God, but of them) has been going on since the beginning of time. It is the "Our gods are better than your gods" syndrome, which is just another part of the animal's drive to survive better, by having more powerful, gods that are more right than the other animals' gods.
The tempter came to him and said, "If you are the Son of God..."
For the sons, believing is as it was for Jesus the firstborn Son, that what the hidden Father was secretly revealing to him was actually true. And the way one says he believes that what the hidden Father is secretly revealing to him is true, is by conforming to what that one is being taught as per how to choose the right and reject the wrong. It is not with mere mouth babbling about what system one claims to adhere to, then turns around and claims that is "belief."
No one who wants to become a public figure acts in secret. Since you are doing these things, show yourself to the world.
The command from the Father was to remain secret and not disclosed, not embraced by the humans even though he was the Messiah they had all been waiting for. He could have proven it to them by one little action, which he thought to himself as he contemplated what it would be to not conform to the Father's personal commandments for him alone. The Father commanded something different from him—even though it was secret and only he knew—than what everyone else, even his disciples and his natural family, wanted and expected. Belief for the Son of God was listening to the one voice of the Father, which no one but himself heard, and being conformed to it instead of the animal will which manifested itself in everyone around him, and even appeared as part of his own thoughts about how things could go if he would just cave in to what seemed more appealing on that level of what the animal wants, needs and craves within itself—to survive in any way it can for its own perpetuation.
My terror I shall send before you and I shall panic the whole people among whom you will come, and I shall make all your enemies turn tail to you. And I shall send the hornet before you and it will drive out the Hivite and the Canaanite and the Hittite before you.
I shall not drive them out before you in one year, lest the land become desolate and the beasts of the field multiply against you. Little by little shall I drive them out before you until you are fruitful and inherit the land.
I shall give into your hand the inhabitants of the land and you will drive them out before you. You shall not make a pact with them or with their gods. They shall not dwell in your land, lest they cause you to offend me, for should you worship their gods, it will be a snare for you.
What the animal yearns for and loves is what is in us by instinct to want to have, possess and own—some attachment to the reality of the humans even in forms that seem perfectly benign. But those which are so seemingly inoffensive and tame, looking like good things and not inherently evil, could be the worst because of their nature of being what seems to be good to what we love and want to have within us, being propelled by the animal nature to get and possess whatever that is. They must be evil, even though they look good, because they keep our identity tied to the natural if we allow ourselves to remain as partakers of that old nature. That nature is our true enemy because it keeps us unclean, like animals which cannot ever come close to the Father of sons (not unclean animals), who can only have His true sons around Him because of His nature and its requirements that God Himself touch no unclean thing—why it becomes a commandment for His own people who are a metaphor for His own hidden sons.
Depart, depart, go out from there! Touch no unclean thing!
There is no value in possessing too much, or being a some thing or another—having worth as a professional this or that honorable or respectable animal amongst the animals. There is nothing because it all gets stripped away. The sons see the big picture, only because that ability has been given to them—that in the beginning there was no natural creation. There was only the Father and His desire to have a family to love, and who would love Him out of an appreciation of who He is, as a response to His love for them.
Our worth is being a true son of the Father, the only living God, and finding our identity only in that. All the things the humans run after all their lives is just a big set of little smokescreens designed to keep them busy and happy until they die. They will have no clue about what being pure is, or clean, because for them everything relates back to itself, whether it does them good or not, which is why the thought of being nothing in this life for the sake of finding our hidden Father is truly reprehensible to the core for them. It should be noted that the reason this is so, is entirely because of the nature that lives inside them to drive them to be a certain way. It must be singled out and identifiable for the sons, so that they can begin to recognize their enemy—not the people themselves, but the nature that rules them. It is not static, nor token, but super powerful and able to keep them where it wants them to be without them even being aware. The christians and other religious groups identify the enemy in bogus terms because their religion is man-made, for the humans to manipulate and control for their own purpose.
Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness? What harmony is there between Christ and Belial? What does a believer have in common with an unbeliever? What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols? For we are the temple of the living God.
As God has said: "I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people. Therefore come out from them and be separate, says the Lord. Touch no unclean thing, and I will receive you. I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty."
Since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.
The humans around us with whom we are bound by natural ties are not able to give us what we need because they don't know what we need. They assume we need what they need, because they have no idea who we are and that we've been chosen because that process is done in secret, just as the hidden Father has always revealed Himself in that secret way. That is why Jesus refers to Him as "heavenly" so often, because he's trying to impress upon the men that He isn't as the humans assume Him to be; that is, able to be comprehended or figured out by the humans.
What the humans want for us is what they want for themselves—to have a better life and existence in the present here and now because that's all they can see. And they want us to reinforce their perception of reality as they know it. The last thing they want us to do is reject them and everything they believe, but that is our reality, which is always opposite to theirs because of what they inherently are. Our enemy is not the humans directly, but what they can only tend to reinforce in us, which truly is our enemy. That old animal nature is not bad for them; it's what makes the creation function as it does, as it has been designed to. That nature keeps us from getting close to, therefore knowing, therefore being able to comprehend the love of our true Father for us. In the process it keeps us from being able to respond to Him reciprocally, and find our true value and worth—not as some human who can do this or that, who has this or that or who is this or that.
Only the true sons, who can truly see, are able to put it aside for the sake of the Father—to show Him and the family that they believe enough to do it. Their example is the core and center of the preserved words, whom the OT words point to, and about whom they contain the true testimony (NT). At the very center of all the preserved words is the One whom all the sons copy in their attempt to be pleasing to the Father. The sons who choose the Father in the same manner as the Son chose Him become an encouragement for the other sons, who perhaps aren't yet able or strong enough to choose, but continue to choose what the animal is offering them, what seems pleasing because of the agreement that finds with the animal still living in them to rule them, which is effectively leading them away from the Father.
Look, I am about to send a messenger before you to guard you on the way and to bring you to the place that I made ready. Watch yourself with him and heed his voice, do not defy him, for he will not pardon your trespass, for my name is within him. But if you truly heed his voice and do all that I speak, I shall be an enemy to your enemies and a foe you your foes.
For my messenger will go before you and will bring you to the Amorite and the Hittite and the Perizzite and the Canaanite, the Hivite and the Jebusite, and I shall obliterate them. You shall not bow to their gods and you shall not worship them, and you shall not do as they do, but you shall utterly tear them down and you shall utterly smash their pillars. And you shall worship the LORD you God, and He will bless your bread and your water, and I shall take away sickness from your midst. There shall be no woman miscarrying or barren in your land. The count of your days I will fill.
The Exodus chapter is almost like a section of a handbook for the son, another copy of the spiritual reality. Even the opening lines, charging us to not follow the many creates a general understanding and definition of who we are and what our numbers look like compared to the rest. Skewing justice, lying, and taking bribes in order to get more is natural for the animal which does all it can just to survive, so it doesn't mind rationalizing about anything. The son seeks to be honest in his heart where no man can see, which is to seek to be pure and upright before God, which is true justice, since we know that He is the only One who can see our heart.
Three times a year you shall hold me a festival.
The festivals are to contemplate and remember God, as are the weekly rests, and the seventh year resting of the land. They all point to how it isn't by their hard toiling that they will be abundantly blessed, but the arm of God helping them, blessing them, making them fruitful, giving them plenty. The same as it was that they didn't by their own force or means bust out of Egypt.
For you know the sojourner's heart
is beneficial for keeping a humility of knowing what we are and where we came from, and hopefully one day may keep us from being manipulated by the craftiness of the animal nature which lives in us. It always wants to conveniently forget the truth and make us believe that we can live a lie in our heart before God. Being pure in our heart before God is no easy thing to do, since our enemy comes from within us—it is us. That's why it's actually impossible, not just difficult, because our very selves, what we are at our core, has to be transformed into something we once weren't, but must be becoming.
This brings us to the last of the chapter, which speaks to us being delivered into the land, the place our Father has prepared for us to live in peace with Him, to grow and become like the Lord, who knew the right and how to choose it, versus the wrong and how to reject it. Inheriting the earth and all God has is nothing but a copy for the real inheritance, because only a son is an heir, and the true sons' inheritance is to actually know and experience his Father's love without the fear that the animal nature always imposes on him. That is our goal, which has nothing to do with our natural existence. That's the modified lie coming out of Babylon, modified by the prostitute daughters of the great whore, according to the cultural climate that the humans control. We cannot know the value of the love of God for His son until we comprehend the magnitude of that underlying, subconscious nagging about always having to worry about the things in our life having to do with the animal's ultimate aim, outright survival in all its forms.
Because the animal knows how to hide so well within us, the Lord has to show us its pervasive existence, and how its goals for humanity are aligned with the Father's, which makes sense because He created it and put it on the humans so they wouldn't live forever by becoming sons (freely picking and eating from the tree of life, which is why it's guarded by an angel with a flaming sword). However, we see the animal nature as a reality of our old selves, and something we have to grow out of as we slowly grow up before our Father. It's all good, and it all makes sense, and it's all for a purpose—so that the few who are chosen by God to have eyes to see might actually become sons.
The spiritually mature son of God's words and actions—the important parts for us—was documented for us to read, examine, observe, and contemplate. The record of some of the words and doings of Jesus and the other sons of God are what the spirit uses to teach us to understand the reason and purpose for everything we can see and observe, ultimately to become as he was. That is the spiritual reality of this text as the copy—being delivered into the land, allowing the Lord to slowly and methodically drive out our enemy before us as we patiently endure. We just do the work that he has given us, that which leads to us seeing his presence over and over, and bringing that reality into us as a fact which can ultimately, over time, drive out that true enemy of ours.
It's not easy because it's so efficient at what it was created to actually do; that is, keep the animals away from the tree of life, which is to say, become a son of God. Only God's sons live forever, and only those who come out from under this curse, put on the humans by God, become His sons. The rest just exist for a moment then they're gone along with the memory of them to God. The few He chooses to become His sons are those who are alive in His mind, as Jesus was for so many hundreds of years before he was born—the purpose of the OT preserved words, to keep talking about the Son who was coming to give their Father what He wanted. They live forever with Him, as His good sons, those who do His will over their own. The family of God's true, hidden sons are the only thing that lasts. They are the reason and purpose for everything we can observe.
Here are my mother and my brothers. For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.