Judges 16 / Isaiah 39 / 2 Peter 3
First of all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. They will say, "Where is this 'coming' he promised? Ever since our fathers died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation."
While these scoffers were scoffing about the Son not coming back as promised, he already had come back, to live in the bodies of those who loved him, who had been chosen to be loved by the Father, to become the secret temple where He would live, secretly hidden inside their bodies, unobservable to the scoffers and the rest of the humans, to accomplish the necessary transformation from animal to son of God. The Son was able to make good on his promise of coming back to them, of not leaving them as orphans—which would have seemed the case just after he was killed.
I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you. Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him.
This is love, to take the time and effort to reassure those who were faithful that all was still on the same track, nothing had been derailed and he still planned to come back to them to live in them and be with them forever, as promised. The events happened just as he told them they would happen when he was speaking with them, just after Judas had left their group.
Jesus saw that they wanted to ask him about this, so he said to them, "Are you asking one another what I meant when I said, `In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me'? I tell you the truth, you will weep and mourn while the world rejoices. You will grieve, but your grief will turn to joy. A woman giving birth to a child has pain because her time has come; but when her baby is born she forgets the anguish because of her joy that a child is born into the world. So with you: Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy. In that day you will no longer ask me anything.
Yet even before he went to the Father, just a few days after he had to leave them, he came back just to reassure them that all was and would be okay, that he still intended, by the power of the Father who raised him up out of the grave, that he was coming back as he had promised them.
On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, "Peace be with you!" After he said this, he showed them his hands and side.
The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord.
They were indeed grieving because their leader, master and teacher, the one who had taken care and concern for them enough to do the Father's will and fulfill His intention that His reality and truth be revealed to them, was all of a sudden gone. By all the power they had available to them—what their natural faculties could perceive—their new life which had just started was all of a sudden over. Now they were filled with the terror and shame of their hopes being dashed to pieces.
I tell you the truth, you will weep and mourn while the world rejoices.
The promises he made to them wouldn't have seemed real because of their perception of the situation, which colored everything they saw with the grief he had also promised. That was just to teach them though, to trust him and to trust the Father, because they had been chosen! This is a kind of formula about learning to believe the unbelievable. Our eyes and mind perceive a situation as those who aren't privileged to know, of the creatures that are bound to the natural creation via the same nature that does the perceiving, and it colors everything with the color of ignorance and death, which is an encapsulation of the natural—ignorant of the Father's reality and already dead even while existing, except for a handful of years.
Even after we know we've been chosen we still have this perception that doesn't want to believe. It is heavy and obtuse, and only wants to see things the way it's comfortable seeing, knowing and realizing them. Our burden is to come away from this way of perceiving as everyone else perceives, because we keep getting reassured that there is another reality that has been given to us, but only to us so our only respite comes from the same place, unknown and inaccessible to the humans at large. We have to go to the same hidden and secret source for relief of carrying the burden, which makes it seem to the rest of the animals that we truly are out of our minds because there is no proving anything we think is happening, except in and from the same dubious (according to them who cannot see) source.
By all practical human purposes we are definitely crazy, and if we look from their perspective of objectivity—what is possible and impossible—we will come to the same conclusion. Yet we have this burden of knowing that we cannot deny because it's true. We have a witness outside of ourselves to acknowledge it, which means to us that we didn't make it up out of our own mental propensities or desires.
The burden of the sons of God is to know so certainly about what's true, while it goes unnoticed and therefore not validated by the humans who can't observe it. Concerning when Jesus says, "My yoke is easy and my burden is light:" his burden is personal because it was his actual burden, that we would, just like him, suffer a lack of credibility and dismissal, even hatred, as he tells the disciples in the John passages—even though he did miracles to prove his genuine authority. His burden is that even though we know we are sons of God, men see us as nothing—just as they saw God, in Jesus, as nothing. He makes the burden light for us by continuing to reinforce the truth in us so that we are able to believe even more thoroughly the thing for which we are and will continue to be being scoffed and sneered at.
"The word of the LORD you have spoken is good," Hezekiah replied. For he thought, "There will be peace and security in my lifetime."
The peace and security Hezekiah thought about wasn't the same peace and security that God wanted to provide for the Israelites in the land, the copy of what He wants to provide for His sons. This was a temporary peace and security, with the prospect of darkness the same as it was for them before He pulled them out of Egypt looming—to become the slaves and servants of the enemy which will overpower them and take them into the darkness of captivity.
That is the copy of the nature that rules the humans who scoff at the sons who are called to come away from that nature which oppresses without awareness to the oppressed (morphine drip as per the mercy of God). They are all completely free to serve their animal natures without the hindrance of God commanding them to become separated form it, let alone teaching them about it, so they could know and become free from its oppression. They, just as we were before the Teacher came, are free to have their families, houses, things, careers, money, dreams, stuff, respect, honor, aspirations, false assumptions about eternal security, smugness about their position before God, etc. All this and more—whatever they can secure for themselves—is their right to claim and have, their right to live their lives like every other animal, until its over. They're free to satisfy their own animal urges all their lives without the burden of the Son—to abandon that right and come away from their animal existences they call life—to hinder them.
All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.
Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.
The burden of the son is to hear the voice of the Son revealing the Father to that particular animal, which says to him, "I will live with you and walk among you, and I will be your God, and you will be my people. Therefore come out from them and be separate," says the Lord, and to heed it. It is not to change it into whatever the son wants it to be saying, which would serve his animal needs best. It says, "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. The burden is that we cannot be like all the rest of the humans who go on with their lives, living as their animal natures dictate to them that they must live; which is their right and pleasure to live in the courts of Babylon without the knowledge of the true God to bother them—without the urge to get back to the land which calls them to live in true peace and security with the Father which goes beyond understanding and, to become free from that yoke of being under the membrane of ignorance about the Father, where the humans live.
But they deliberately forget that long ago by God's word the heavens existed and the earth was formed out of water and by water.
By these waters also the world of that time was deluged and destroyed.
The sons come out from their existence as mere animals—beasts of burden—which is a burden. Another part of the burden is as already mentioned, and why Peter follows his sentence about the scoffers with the account of Noah. Noah heard the voice and heeded it, even though it was a burden for him to do so. It would have been much easier just to live as the rest of the people lived around him, just as it would be easier for the sons to conform to likeness of this present world of the humans who rule it—living like the rest of the animals who are merely perishing without having to even realize it, living happily as slaves in the courts of Babylon with no apparent need to come out from there (morphine dripper, mercy of God).
Because the Genesis account reads, "God saw how corrupt the earth had become, for all the people on earth had corrupted their ways," we are trained to think that the people on the earth were constantly engaged in some kind of all-out, non-stop orgy of evil. That comes mainly from an ignorance of what God thinks is corrupt, which is every human who is corrupted by the presence of the unclean animal nature in it—all of them except those He is choosing to become holy and consecrated (separated) for His purpose and pleasure. The sons have an urge and desire within them (a pull, their calling) to leave Babylon so they can go to the land and be a separate, holy people of God, dedicated to Him—not for Babylon's purpose.
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.
What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all--how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. Who is he that condemns? Christ Jesus, who died--more than that, who was raised to life--is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written:
"For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered."
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Jesus explains how it was on the earth in the days of Noah, which was the same way it was when he had an earthly body, which is the same way it is now—people just living out their lives normally, unaware that they are just animals following the dictates of their animal instincts to survive, procure, indulge and live for what's perceived. Noah, though, was being called to know another reality, to which the others weren't privy.
To me this is like the days of Noah.
It's the same as the scoffers today who think that what they are able to perceive is it, or that they can control God's salvation just because they think they bought it (by "believing" the correct facts—which ironically are incorrect) and now own it; who assume positions as leaders and teachers of God's people, yet can only live as animals, satisfying and fulfilling their own animal needs, lusts and desires like all the rest of them.
Just as it was in the days of Noah, so also will it be in the days of the Son of Man. People were eating, drinking, marrying and being given in marriage up to the day Noah entered the ark. Then the flood came and destroyed them all.
It was the same in the days of Lot. People were eating and drinking, buying and selling, planting and building. But the day Lot left Sodom, fire and sulfur rained down from heaven and destroyed them all.
So what's corrupt and evil in God's eyes is merely living like all of the animals on the earth who are cursed by the animal nature. Our burden isn't to change the unchangeable, but to warn the sons to come out from them and become separated from that which contaminates. It isn't as the corrupted animals think, that they can be clean if they avoid "evil" things like adultery, stealing smoking, bars, lap dances and porno films, etc. (what the "bad people" do), although I am not advocating these things, which are merely animal indulgences. That kind of thinking, that there is an open invitation and a power within every one of the humans to get to God on the outside (by becoming one of the "good people") comes straight out of the whore's mouth. What the sons learn is that "Eating and drinking, buying and selling, planting and building, marrying and being given in marriage," is the right of all the animals, but for the called and chosen sons it's a thing that is evil to God, which comes from the mouth of Jesus, and they understand what he means by it because he lives in them to teach them the true meaning of the difference between the sons of God (Noah) and the rest of the humans (everyone else).
The scoffers who are merely living out their animal existences don't understand that that is what God considers corrupt and evil, not for them but for His sons, because it is the natural workings out of the animal nature, devoid of a knowledge of Him. Therefore that's what keeps them separated from Him, just like all the animals are separated from Him. They even think that by and through it they're gaining some kind of salvation for themselves. That's the difference between the sons and the animals. The animals live their lives to and for themselves, their brood and everything else that can advance their cause—devoid of God; eating and drinking, buying and selling, planting and building, marrying and being given in marriage—while the sons learn to and then live out their lives devoid of these corrupting, base, animal things for their Father's sake and purpose.
So then, dear friends, since you are looking forward to this, make every effort to be found spotless, blameless and at peace with him.
Therefore, dear friends, since you already know this, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of lawless men and fall from your secure position.
Samson said, "Let me die with the Philistines!" Then he pushed with all his might, and down came the temple on the rulers and all the people in it. Thus he killed many more when he died than while he lived.
All jewish children would have learned the story of Samson; he was a symbol for the people as a national hero, a role model for men who would grow up to be willing to die—either figuratively or literally—for their mother, Jerusalem. That was the height of manhood for the Jew, that you would give your life for the nation and the hope of Israel, God's chosen people. This may have been one of the first stories Jesus learned as he grew up in his good Jewish household.
Many men would have wanted to identify with the warrior-deliverer Samson. They also totally attributed that image with the national consciousness' vision of the promised Messiah, the Son of David, in the same vein as they perceived their great warrior-king David. To the Jews, what the true Messiah actually was, according to what they perceived, was a shameful failure and loser who couldn't even protect himself, the totally ironic and most incredibly outrageously delicious thing that the Father—accomplishing the most perfect salvation through their action of "throwing out the garbage" (what they thought they were doing)—could have ever done.
The people stood watching, and the rulers even sneered at him. They said, "He saved others; let him save himself if he is the Christ of God, the Chosen One."
The soldiers also came up and mocked him. They offered him wine vinegar and said, "If you are the king of the Jews, save yourself."
Their perception was totally animal, totally natural, based upon the idea that this existence was so incredibly valuable and indispensable that saving oneself was the most basic assumption by which they live their existences. Him not saving himself appeared to be one thing, according to the humans' perception, while according to the reality of the Father it was quite another.
The Father loves the Son and has placed everything in his hands.
For the Father loves the Son and shows him all he does.
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.
The false leaders had no authority to kill the Son unless that authority was given to them, to accomplish something so great, yet never perceived by them because it was being done privately and secretly, yet by them right under their noses. What an incredibly ironic thing that the self-appointed shepherds of God's people were killing the one they claimed to have been waiting for, because he wasn't what they were able to accept, according to their ability to perceive. This brings us around to the phrase I stuck on the front of this web site, "Whatever seems to be, isn't." Whatever seems to be is that way because of a flawed ability to perceive, and that's why it seems that way. Now, coming back around to the burden of the son of God, it is his to come away from that way of perceiving by listening to the Teacher and becoming transformed into a creature who looks and acts—more importantly has the ability to perceive—like his Father instead of a dumb animal, aimlessly grazing away in the field, without a burden (ignorance is blissful), until the day it's slaughtered.
Judas and Peter both epitomize that identification with the hero of national identity to a stronger and lesser degree. One in the betrayal story, the other in the arrest story; not coincidently they both happened at the same time—in Gethsemane just before Jesus did the work to which he had been called. Only One would learn that it applied to him specifically, spiritually, yet differently than everyone expected. Jesus betrayed the national notions of manhood. He betrayed his own life and everything he could become. He betrayed his followers who were counting on him to fulfill their destiny and make them complete men in a completely supreme nation. In the natural he was shameful, not honorable.
Then one of them, named Caiaphas, who was high priest that year, spoke up, "You know nothing at all! You do not realize that it is better for you that one man die for the people than that the whole nation perish."
He did not say this on his own, but as high priest that year he prophesied that Jesus would die for the Jewish nation, and not only for that nation but also for the scattered children of God, to bring them together and make them one. So from that day on they plotted to take his life.
The work that Jesus—the unseen warrior, king, and deliverer—did, was completely in the spiritual realm, hidden to and unperceived by the humans. It had nothing to do with the pride of national Israel, which was a human thing—everything on the outside pointed to him as dishonorable failure. Man's values and God's values collide—they are completely opposite one another, so man isn't ever able to perceive what God is ever doing.
Men always want to take their twisted symbol of their made up jesus and think he'll make them better because they assume he is, like everything else in their lives they claim to own and control, for their own miserable purpose—to get something from him (going to the made up heaven instead of the made up hell). Heaven just means the unseen spirit realm, where God lives who is pure spirit. Hell just means Sheol, the grave, which is the ground, the earth—becoming truly one with the natural creation by melting (decomposing) into it like everything else does.
It's hard to look past what we perceive because it's all we know. The values we were taught as animals who learn from each other, since our birth, are a stronghold in our hearts. We are applauded when we finally start to grow out of the days of our youth and start becoming responsible, mature animals. We are encouraged to and praised when we get a good job so that we can pump out some animal babies and provide for them and our lovely animal mate. "We're all so proud of you—you turned out to be such an honorable man" is what they'll tell us when we become just like they want us to become, for their sakes (to avoid the shame of producing dishonorable offspring). Everything about the animal comes from the motivation to avoid shame and suffering, to hide from God as per Genesis 3. The sons of God are shameful and dishonorable to them because they conform to an identity that isn't valued among them, because it isn't perceived.
What props up our ego and satisfies its cravings is what God wants to cut out of our hearts, so that we're not being defined as a beast in the field, just waiting for our slaughter date. The way we treat others rightly and without prejudice, our children's successes, our money, career and ability to provide for our family are all honorably validating. Our strength and knowledge of scripture; and moral purity, steadfastness and reliability as a person, father, husband, & friend is all rubbish to God because it's all about the animal perception of virtue.
There is no external strength, no strength of character, no natural glory or pride in following the real Jesus, nor will there be any validation from them. There is only the shame of being wrong and the appearance of weakness and failure on the follower's part—the loss of the pride of life and the subject of scoffers. It is being rejected by the people you want acceptance from, not the people who don't matter. Being accepted by men is not being accepted by God, and vice-versa.
In retrospect we know that it was his suffering that made the Lord clean. It was suffering put on him, on purpose, by his Father. Not an accident, but the crushing hand of God, delivering the suffering Himself, to squash the pride of life, the desire to be and live as an animal, out of him. It wasn't any kind of conceptual suffering, even though it was hidden from the world.
While he grew up he learned that he indeed was the Son of God, the promised Messiah, the great prophet Moses predicted. His natural self would have told him about all of the glory that he would receive as the chosen, promised One—the Son of David. Then he had to learn that he would not receive that glory, but instead would be despised and hated, and die a shameful death. Instead of throngs of people hailing him, only a few would actually stand by his side in the end, and those wouldn't be honorable. In man's world he became just a spot, a nothing, a weak failure who couldn't even save himself, let alone his disciples or the nation.
It wasn't just arbitrary suffering though, but suffering for the sake of the others, the purpose and will of the Father out of love for Him and a desire to accommodate Him instead of the animal. That's a nice thing to say, but it's the last thing we would ever ultimately choose to do. Even if we are willing to give up obvious things for God and others (whatever we learned to use to love ourselves), we still have the secret things in our hearts that we hold on to—not even consciously because we can't even see them. They are the invisible strongholds, the impregnable survival mechanisms of the animal. Thick walls of defense hidden in the darkness deep within us, they cannot be noticed until the light shines in our hearts, which begins to reveal them as they are (the beginning of the new way of perceiving). Then God can start cutting them out of our hearts as they are no longer hidden because the light betrays them. Without the light we remain dead, filled with the darkness where the pride of life hides.
Look, the Lamb of God!
Because he was continuously broken with the suffering in his body with which God inflicted him, the animal pride was never able to take hold in his heart. From even before he was born, the Father shined the light of truth in the Son's heart so that he never did learn the way of man, but only learned the way of God—the way to be able to love Him by doing what He wanted from His own Son (not like Adam, who did what he wanted to do out of ignorance about what it would cost him). The pride of the animal is to constantly preserve the self and live for its self. Jesus learned the new motivation, the opposite of the animal—to love Another instead of himself. That is what kept him pure and blameless, the spotless Lamb of God without blemish, able to be the perfect sacrifice—the choice for God's way—which the Father could accept.