Leviticus 22 / Psalms 125-127 / Luke 5
So they (Peter, James and John) pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him.
"Follow me," Jesus said to him, and Levi got up, left everything and followed him.
The calling of the fishermen and then Levi, versus the crowd of those who were listening to him speak tells the story of how God has never been open to the general public and able to be known by anyone who wants to find Him. The copy of what God did in choosing the Israelites generally, then the judges and prophets specifically serves as His clear intention that He would specifically choose whomever He wanted to be His people, and He chose who would serve Him in His house. Even closer than the priests who kept His house clean were those He chose to be leaders of the people, e.g. Moses, Joshua, Samuel, David, etc. He did the choosing, and set all the requirements for everything. The people didn't decide or choose anything for God. It's only when they actually did decide to choose their own way, to go against what He set up and with what they thought was the best way, that they got into trouble.
One day as Jesus was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret, with the people crowding around him and listening to the word of God, he saw at the water's edge two boats, left there by the fishermen, who were washing their nets. He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little from shore. Then he sat down and taught the people from the boat.
Notice that none of the disciples were in the crowd, but just going about their work as normal. The crowd thought he might have something for them so they were interested in listening to him speak as long as what he had to say was acceptable to them, perhaps to generate or revive some hope that he might be the Messiah who would liberate Israel and make them great. Like those who say they want what God has to give them, but no real intention of actually finding out what that is or how much it costs, the crowd thought that they could take Jesus and make him into what they wanted him to be for them—the liberating, conquering Messiah who could make their lives great. They figured they could mold his message into what they needed it to be for their sake. That's what the animal nature always does, which found its zenith in the message of the life and actions of Judas. When it was finally clear to him that Jesus wasn't going to be what he expected or wanted him to be, then he sold him off for money, which the animals love because it makes them feel safe.
From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him.
Like the crowd in John 6 who finally heard what Jesus was saying, what he actually expected of his followers. When what he said became too hard to accept, they just fell away because they wanted to hear something else from him, what they had already established would be an acceptable thing to be able to hear. He didn't want big crowds of halfhearted animals
I tell you the truth, you are looking for me, not because you saw miraculous signs but because you ate the loaves and had your fill. Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. On him God the Father has placed his seal of approval.
The intention of God from that time forward was to take His truth underground and make it secret, and at the same time allow the mere humans to believe whatever they wanted to make up and believe like the rest of the world, according to their own assumptions and their willingness to trust the liars—like Adam trusted his helper, who trusted the lying snake. All the self-appointed leaders say they have the truth, but so do witches, mormons, muslims, and ufo nuts. In reality they're holding nothing except their ability to control people with lies about what they could have, and manipulating their fears of not being right with God. The pastors, ministers, rabbis, priests, monks and other self-appointed teachers all say they have the truth, and that they can lead others to it. But the truth of God is not found in the world—it is hidden and kept secret because it's God's valuable treasure. It has gone underground and the world has been in darkness since the 4th or 5th century, since the whore of babylon firmed up her power in the form of the christian institution and spun off all her little daughter prostitutes who look like her.
The next day John was there again with two of his disciples. When he saw Jesus passing by, he said, "Look, the Lamb of God!" When the two disciples heard him say this, they followed Jesus.
Following Jesus as he went into the hard places where the humans don't want to go is a lot different than standing there at the water's edge listening to him, deciding whether he's the real deal or not. To follow Jesus the humans had to be drawn to him, by the Father, to be able to do that because it was beyond difficult. It wasn't like other things the humans decide to do or not do. A specific calling of the Father had to be initiated by Him, or else you were just another one in the crowd whose ears only heard what could make sense to their animal being. Those who were being chosen to become sons to God were given special ears to be able to hear what those in the crowd couldn't.
Stop grumbling among yourselves. No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him, and I will raise him up at the last day. It is written in the Prophets: 'They will all be taught by God.' Everyone who listens to the Father and learns from him comes to me.
The knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven has been given to you, but not to them. Whoever has will be given more, and he will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him. This is why I speak to them in parables:
Though seeing, they do not see; though hearing, they do not hear or understand. In them is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah:
"You will be ever hearing but never understanding; you will be ever seeing but never perceiving. For this people's heart has become calloused; they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them."
But blessed are your eyes because they see, and your ears because they hear. For I tell you the truth, many prophets and righteous men longed to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.
Lots of people want to "go to heaven" and they believe the lies that have been shoved down the world's throat, that eternal life is free, cheap and easy, and there's not too much required because God loves everyone the same, so much there's nothing to worry about. According to the prostitutes, everyone will go to heaven as long as one adheres to the right myth about the good gods versus the bad gods—straight out of comic pulp lore—as though He has no preference about who's near Him.
"You do not want to leave too, do you?" Jesus asked the Twelve.
The 12 were picked by the Father, for Jesus to take on as students and true brothers and sons of the Father who specifically chose and wanted them in His family; to teach and reveal the life and truth of the Father to them so they could believe him enough to see what this life is worth; to turn their back on the animal and live the rest of their lives tending to God's purpose, which was doing for other chosen sons what Jesus the firstborn Son did for them. They didn't come listening to Jesus with the rest of the crowd in anticipation of him giving them something they thought they needed or wanted. They were going about their work and he came to them—he chose them according to the Father's word that he heard. And compare what they did, how they "left everything and followed him," to what most of his disciples did when they considered what he had to say harder than they were willing to accept as they, "turned back and no longer followed him." Consider the reaction of Peter before he knew the truth about God, as personally revealed by Jesus to him, and after he had lived with Jesus for almost 3 years. Before it was, "Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man!" After it was, "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We believe and know that you are the Holy One of God."
As long as the crowds considered Jesus' teachings as something that was all according to what they could accept, they didn't mind following him because he generated a hope in them that they could get something for themselves by listening to him. But when they realized what he actually required, all but 12 or so of them fell away. That's how the assumptions of the humans interact with the truth about God. As long as they can decide what His requirements are, or feel sedated by the attractiveness of the lie that one can be fully animal like all the rest, living out one's life for himself then at the end of it there will be some heaven waiting for him just because he swallowed the right lie, then they are fine believing it because that's easy and there's no real cost involved. But when they are faced with the real truth, then that is either too much for them to bear or else they actually do want it enough to pay the price. The living God doesn't want half-hearted nitwits for sons, who gullibly believe those who pose as "experts," who are obviously just churning out the same old stinky turds with their own brand of perfume sprayed all over them.
Large crowds were traveling with Jesus, and turning to them he said: "If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sisters—yes, even his own life—he cannot be my disciple. And anyone who does not carry his cross and follow me cannot be my disciple."
Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Will he not first sit down and estimate the cost to see if he has enough money to complete it? For if he lays the foundation and is not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule him, saying, 'This fellow began to build and was not able to finish.'
They conveniently forget the hard things Jesus says about following him, because then the people might realize it's too hard and they're not willing to pay the price (actually the most honest conclusion anyone could come to). Very few actually want the truth because it goes against what they are at their core, and it is too hard to accept compared to the fairy tale that sounds good to the animal that spends its life surviving for its own sake, then can dream about an eternal survival after this life of surviving is over.
But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.
It's like the parable he told of the son who said he wouldn't go out to work but then he did, versus the son who gave his father lip service about his intentions to work, but didn't go. That's a picture of the 11 disciples, who ended up ultimately believing Jesus and staying with him even after they found out the cost, versus all those in the crowd who listened but fell away when they found out the truth. Jesus makes it clear that it's not just some party, that we can't just go with the lies of the morphine dealer and also have the truth. The truth about God is painful to the animal because it means the animal has to die, and the main goal of all the animal is to survive by any means.
"What do you think? There was a man who had two sons. He went to the first and said, 'Son, go and work today in the vineyard.' 'I will not,' he answered, but later he changed his mind and went. Then the father went to the other son and said the same thing. He answered, 'I will, sir,' but he did not go. Which of the two did what his father wanted?"
"The first," they answered.
Jesus said to them, "I tell you the truth, the tax collectors and the prostitutes are entering the kingdom of God ahead of you. For John came to you to show you the way of righteousness, and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the prostitutes did. And even after you saw this, you did not repent and believe him."
They may not know what the price is because of the lies, and a lot of misguidedness has been employed in some thinking they must decide and then "go to work" for God. And so they join the monastery or join a church, or become some kind of missionary—perhaps good intentions but based on lies created by men. They want the things of God but don't understand that one cannot just reach out his hand and take from the tree of life, against what the religious leaders have been saying for so long. Actually, what they've been saying is, "If you become like us, then you'll go to heaven instead of hell."
So are we saying the same thing? We're saying you cannot know the truth unless it's been revealed to you. It's hidden for a reason, so that God can decide who understands versus who just goes on believing the lies of man with all his misguided notions about being able to get to God on his own, that is to say through the proper human channels, administered by the "experts," where there's plenty of the agreement of consensus to be had. Since a whole bunch of people believe a certain thing then it must be true—like the crowds of people willing to be listening to Jesus until the others started to walk away. In the sense that God specifically draws those who will be able to hear His voice guiding them to Him, everything we write must be for those who have been chosen or will be chosen to understand—like the 12 whom God intended would become sons versus the crowd. Everyone else will just think we're wrong, which is the easy thing to believe, the path of least resistance—like everyone else who lived in Israel and heard Jesus' and John's message, but turned away because it was too hard to hear.
The morphine drip idea that we've talked about is how God in His mercy allows everyone to believe whatever lie they want to believe, thinking there's a good chance that they're going to some heaven or paradise, or they'll be in the kingdom if they're good enough and think the correct facts about God are true. But "good" according to what, or whom? According to the "experts," who don't even know the truth themselves? If they knew the truth, wouldn't it be more clear that it actually was the truth? Wouldn't it be so compelling that there was no doubt it was true, and much easier to believe? It can't be, because it's not—because none of the so-called truths espoused in the world by men are actually true in God's world. They are all part of the morphine dripper deal, set up by God so that people will think they're all going to heaven or whatever eternal form of survival they think will be waiting for them. Everything that the living God does is perfect; there is no confusion of chaos, randomness or genericalness.