Deuteronomy 1 / Proverbs 28 / John 11
And your sons who know not this day good or evil, they it is who will come there, and to them I will give it, and they will take hold of it.
I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.
Moses in the teaching metaphor was referring to the still immature children who would come into the land as those who didn't yet know good and evil; they were vulnerable, trusting and naive to the ways of the mature animal—it had not yet infested them—while their parents were denied the right to enter the land because of their condition as mature animals who did know evil, and practiced it by doubting God and rebelling against His guiding them where He wanted them to be. Jesus explains to the men who had been chosen to become sons that God required that they become as little children, like the Israelite children who were not familiar with good and evil. That was the only way they would be able to "come in to the land," which was the metaphor for "entering the kingdom of heaven." Only there could they know the love that the Father has for them—His intention for the first humans—so much that He desires to redeem them from the ground so that they can live with Him forever in His house and family, which is His purpose (the will of the Father that good sons live to do at the expense of their own selves and will).
Becoming like little vulnerable children who trust their Father is not some easy thing to do, in fact it's impossible to do once the animal nature has taken hold in the animal which has already crossed over from vulnerable to self-protecting and has fully learned that it must take care of itself or it will die. Those who claim that one can just become like a little child by their own will and purpose (to get some kind of eternal survival from God) don't really believe it because they don't understand that it's more literal than metaphorical. One cannot be a fully mature wild animal through and through and then just decide they're going to become like a little child. That just breeds the phony half smiles and manufactured "love" one finds in the places where the animals get together to give each other the agreement of consensus that they are all going to survive forever, together with all the "good people" who agree with them.
The mature human animals pride themselves on being able to think and weigh, then choose which way to go because they're so wise, and their self-flattery is just another component of the self-preserving and self-promoting nature that drives them. They worship those who seem intelligent because it means they are a more fully developed animal, more apt and fit to survive better and longer than one who is not as "smart." I put that word in quotations because their definition of smart is skewed by the limitations of what they think they know, which isn't really much. It's really the same as anything they think is valuable enough to spend their lives pursuing. They may attain some of what they're after, but at a certain point not very far away, in one second it all just goes away along with their precious life they've spent their time trying to enhance and preserve by anything they could get to build up another piece of the wall they hide behind so they're not found out as what they actually are—a naked creature that dies alone with no wall to hide behind, only a hole in the ground to get tossed into. There is where they will find their ultimate destiny, which aligns with what's observable about the rest of creation. There they will soon become one with the natural creation in a very real and highly observable way as their body becomes just another part of the soil that consumes them.
Those who are chosen and called to become sons to the living God must go back to the beginning by being transformed into a being who really does trust their unseen Father, which is not a suggestion or a "Do it if you can" type of deal. There is no going in to the land—entering into a secret relationship with the hidden Father—with the heart, mind and soul of a mature animal who must decide for himself between good and evil and then choose. Those who trust the Father listen and obey their particular commands given to them supernaturally, and they learn to find a safety and security there in that place where they find themselves when they do listen and obey, like a good child who wants to please its parent.
And the tree of life was in the midst of the garden and the tree of the knowledge, good and evil.
But from the tree of the knowledge, good and evil, you shall not eat, for on the day you eat from it, you are doomed to die.
For God knows that on the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened and you will be as gods knowing good and evil.
The LORD God made skin coats for the human and his woman, and He clothed them. And the LORD God said, "Now that the human has become like one of us, knowing good and evil, he may reach out and take as well from the tree of life and live forever."
And the LORD God sent him from the garden of Eden to till the soil from which he had been taken. And He drove out the human and set up east of the garden of Eden the cherubim and the flame of the whirling sword to guard the way to the tree of life.
Why didn't they need clothes before? Why were their clothes made from animal skins after they died? Why could they eat from the tree of life before and not after? Why could they not eat from the tree of life after they were in the condition of knowing good and evil (being dead)? Why did knowing good and evil lead to death? Why did knowing good and evil seem desirable to them? Why did the snake want them to do it? Who/what is the snake? What's the connection between soil, man and animal? Man was taken from the soil, the woman was taken from the man—What was the animal taken from in its creation? What's the connection between "your eyes will be opened" and "you are doomed to die?"
"Coming into the land" is a metaphor for entering into the relationship between the Father and His own good son who can hear His voice and know Him. There He will live in peace with His family without the fear, intimidation and pollution of the enemy to come between them. His enemy from the beginning is the deceiver, the animal nature represented by and manifesting itself in the snake who tricked the son who had a choice. It filled the human with a lust for what wasn't good for him, that which would drive him away from the Father, which would create the wedge of chaos instead of peace. Nevertheless, it was a creation by God according to His purpose. The words of God have been preserved for the sons. They contain secrets about the life that is hidden from all that is natural, including all the humans, who are the descendants of the first human and the helper who was made for him.
At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, "Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?" He called a little child and had him stand among them. And he said: "I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven."
The disciples were mature animals, those who had grown up so that they were under the condition of "knowing good and evil" (were fully led by the mature wild animal nature, fully set and developed in them). They only knew the way of man and who was naturally great in the kingdoms of men e.g., the strongest, smartest, richest and most respected one with access to the most resources to control and maintain his greatness, etc. That's the human way, the way of the mature animal which must survive by the power of his own hand to get what it needs to do that. It's the way the created world works, and the ruler of the natural creation (the force of power of instinct) is the nature that leads the animals. The way of the immature animal is more like God's way, like the human and the woman before their eyes were opened, before they knew good and evil, before they conspired with the animal against the Father, before they had the animal skins put on them and were cut off from the tree of life. Before they had to work and slave all their lives to protect and promote themselves and their interests. Before they were like soft little sheep, after they became like stubborn goats. Before they depended on their Father for everything, after they had to fend for themselves and learn to survive. Before their enemy was outside of them, after it was part of them, as they were bonded with that nature of fear and self-preservation. Before they could see the Father and talk to Him, after He was invisible to them and what they saw was the temporary, created things and the lies of their new father, the devil—the ruler of this creation.
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
Whether every detail as written actually happened or is only a metaphor of the way things are and why is not the point. To try to prove that God actually exists by the information in the preserved words is ludicrous and a very animal thing to do, because that's just more of the animal nature at work to find an agreement and attempt to feel safe by that feeling that your god is better than the other gods. The secret message that's contained within the words that have been preserved is for those whom the Father intends to be able to comprehend it, the things He wants His own sons to know about Him who is hidden from the created world and those who inhabit it. To try to make the words fulfill the craving to feel like we have the stronger and righter god is just another animal thing, terribly pointless for the sons to engage in. There is no proof that we can present and by which we can feel validated, because our validation is secret and hidden the same way the Father is, which is also the way He kept the Son's identity. Although he was Messiah, there was no proof that he was allowed to display (which is what he was tempted to do) so as to validate himself to the humans. That is a crux of what the sons must comprehend, because it's the same way for them. They don't reveal themselves to the world as per what they are, but remain hidden in the folds of the world by the Father who did the same thing with the firstborn Son.
And you grumbled in your tents and said, "In the LORD's hatred of us He took us out of the land of Egypt to give us into the hand of the Amorite to destroy us. Where are we going up? Our brothers have made our heart faint, saying, "A people greater and loftier than we, towns great and fortified to the heavens; and also giants did we see there."
And I said to you, "You shall not dread and you shall not fear them. The LORD your God who goes before you, He it is who will battle for you as all the He did with you in Egypt before your very eyes, and in the wilderness that you have seen, where the LORD carried you as a man carries his son all the way that you went as far as this place.
And despite this thing you do not trust the LORD your God, who goes before you on the way to search out for you a place for you to camp in the fire by night to show you the way that you should go and in the cloud by day.
The writer of Hebrews understood that the OT contained secrets for him and the other sons of his time. He starts to talk some about it as the things of the Tabernacle being copies of the real, spiritual reality. That's actually only a small part of what we are beginning to see—everything in the words preserved for the sons is good and for our benefit, but only when it starts to become illuminated by the teacher who used it to lead us in a direction we don't naturally want to go—away from what is familiar to us.
The spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing.
There is a duality, reinforced by the Hebrews copy theory (Chapters 9 & 10 esp), between everything that was lost in the beginning versus what was inherited by the humans. That is the flesh and blood animal nature and everything associated with it—the way of the humans, temporality, deception, etc. It is referred to as "the flesh" in the NT because it is about the temporary body, which is flesh (muscles), bones and blood—the thing that goes into the ground upon its expiration and becomes one with the creation, not separated form it.
Because it is hidden and secret, the humans can't understand it even though they assume they can, because they think it's just another thing they can attain to and get for themselves and their own DNA carriers. What they're assuming to do is get to the real God by way of the unreal, temporary reality—that which the human inherited when it also inherited death and a new nature. In that sense what they try to do is just what the woman tried to do in the beginning—to get to God by a way that wasn't intended for her, to try to get something that wasn't hers to have, knowing good and evil. It's an arrogant and selfish attempt to get more than what you're being offered.
The humans who claim to know the way to God say that the sinful nature can just be shrugged off like a bad habit because they believe that they actually can get to God by whatever means they choose, which fits their self-serving, self-preserving nature. Just as the woman believed the snake, the ignorant masses believe the leaders who say that they know the way to God. It's a continual reenactment of the scene in the garden where the woman wants what isn't hers to have, and the human believing and trusting her.
The desire of the Father for the sons is that they be brought full circle back to His original intention for the first son, that he be delivered into the land, that he live with his Father in the garden, in the peace of that relationship where he can know the Father's love. All of that is contingent upon the son's choice about what nature he's being ruled by. Not a son who wants to be different than what the Father desires him to be, or to have more than what he has been given, but one who loves Him and trusts Him enough to be and remain content with what He's giving the son, and where He's leading him, even if it doesn't feel good and right to what he always has trusted. And he doesn't just say he loves the Father with his mouth while he desires more in his heart, but shows that he loves and appreciates his Father, giving love back to Him by not emulating the first son—not listening to the animal—but the second, who is firstborn among many brothers, by choosing the right and rejecting the wrong.
There are a number of allusions in the John reading that reinforce the duality between what the humans assume is true, and therefore trust because of what they can see with their eyes versus what was going on in the hidden, invisible, spiritual reality which Jesus was trying to get them to see and trust. All of the many assumptions of the disciples—Martha, Mary and the general crowd about what appeared to be true, versus what actually happened is why Jesus waited a couple of extra days. And John makes sure that what the humans appeared to believe, versus what Jesus wanted to show them, was fully brought out in the words he wrote.
"Lord," Martha said to Jesus, "if you had been here, my brother would not have died.
When Mary reached the place where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet and said, "Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died."
Some of them said, "Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man have kept this man from dying?"
"But, Lord," said Martha, the sister of the dead man, "by this time there is a bad odor, for he has been there four days."
Then Jesus said, "Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?"
Martha definitely represents what the humans are preoccupied with. In Luke 10 she is preoccupied with the temporary human things—preparing the temporary food—which is contrasted with the food that her sister Mary chose—to sit at the feet of Jesus and listen to his words, which it is said Mary chose over the other, temporary thing. Mary is the son while Martha is the human who is led by the animal nature that is preoccupied with what is the "responsible" way to be. The sons, like little children who are ignorant of what to do to be "responsible," just sit and listen to the voice of the Teacher who is speaking to them and guiding them away from the snake and instead toward their Father.
She came to him and asked, "Lord, don't you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!"
"Martha, Martha," the Lord answered, "you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her."
That duality is also found in the instance of the Israelite spies trusting what they could see with their eyes (fortified cities, giants, etc.) versus the reality of what they couldn't see, but could remember was true (God pulling them out of Egypt, pulling off what seemed impossible, and the other miracles); to trust that reality (secret mystery of the hidden Father) over the other (natural reality of observable things, way of the humans), even though the other is always more tangible and easy to accept. That's what the sons must start doing in order to understand that secret reality. It is hidden in everything—the natural creation, the way the creatures act (what drives them), the particular words preserved for them and the reason for their preservation.
They eat the hidden food, which grows the life of the Father in them and starves the serpent; so that they become like the Father and unlike what is created and temporary. They learn to maintain order within themselves and not allow the enemy to gain the foothold, which leads to death. Life is allowing the Father to dwell within us so that we can become familiar with Him and get to know Him and His way, and learn to accept it. Then we're able to keep the chaos of the animal out of the land, keeping the enemy far from us so we remain safe and secure, which is His intention for His own sons.
When a country is rebellious, it has many rulers, but a man of understanding and knowledge maintains order.
The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.