2 Samuel 8-9 / Jeremiah 13 / Matthew 24
Watch out that no one deceives you. For many will come in my name, claiming, "I am the Christ," and will deceive many.
Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people.
So if anyone tells you, 'There he is, out in the desert,' do not go out; or, 'Here he is, in the inner rooms,' do not believe it. For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. Wherever there is a carcass, there the vultures will gather.
Hear and pay attention, do not be arrogant, for the LORD has spoken.
Give glory to the LORD your God
before he brings the darkness,
But if you do not listen,
I will weep in secret
because of your pride;
There is no level of maturity that we should strive for, toward becoming smart enough to figure things out, or aggressive enough to become leaders—because that kind of thinking is totally human based, on the notion that children are inferior and adults are superior. But the Son said that in order to be pleasing to the Father, his brothers would have to become not like strong leaders but like vulnerable little children, who often times know no shame nor are they bound by the social constraints the adults learn to be ruled by, being so conscious of all their lives (the rules of the animals).
If we know that the Son said to his disciples that they had to become like little children, so he has said it to us too, if we know we've been chosen by the Father as they were chosen. Chosen to become what—intellectuals who know everything about the text? People who will be honored and rewarded for their positions? Perhaps, but vengeance will be the Father's pleasure, not the children's. They just trust the Father like innocents who aren't afraid because they have seen the Father's hand protecting them, over and over until they learn to trust it. They are entering into a new way of consciousness where the schemes of the snake don't need to be honed. When the Son told the disciples to be as shrewd as snakes but as innocent as doves, it was before they were given the life that could live in them to give them what they need. There's just nothing to worry about except going further in—that is, to the place where we are actually trusting the Father's life in us more than we need to trust our own, like a knee-jerk reaction we learned to employ it by before, as though its mechanisms were part of our actual nature (because they were).
Who then is the faithful and wise servant, whom the master has put in charge of the servants in his household to give them their food at the proper time? It will be good for that servant whose master finds him doing so when he returns. I tell you the truth, he will put him in charge of all his possessions.
Becoming the faithful and wise servant is actually becoming ignorant and vulnerable, like little children, because the time the master comes isn't calculable or able to be known by guessing. That requires a state not of manipulating the situation so that we hit it just right, but of thoroughly learning another way of being that is different than before when *all we could do* was manipulate and strategize the situation so we could maximize our security for our selves, by whatever means were available to us to do it. The conspiracy amongst the humans is that they know they're all doing that same thing, so they all have to be on their guard because the predators are everywhere and it's all just a big game of surviving at the cost of the others. There is serious competition for the things they're gonna want and they begin to understand that even while they're young.
This is a central definition of what lives in the humans—the animal nature and its inherent need to always protect itself in this hostile world full of predators. The adaptation and conniving it learns to adopt is what it thinks might be good traits for another type of survival while it keeps the instincts intact that make them continue to survive the best they can in multiple ways—physically, mentally and emotionally. When the humans are little children it's easy to be vulnerable and trusting because that's what they are before they start learning about the hostile world. Once they start seeing what they're going to have to do, they begin employing their own rudimentary strategies they know they must, as the reaction to what they're seeing about how the other animals behave. When they've grown into animal adulthood and have adopted most or all the ways of the animal for their own specific plight in trying to survive, it's quite impossible to become a little child again. They don't actually ever want to because being a child is a despised position. Those who would ever think they wanted to are doing it because they've been reading the preserved words and think it's a command for them, so they try to force it or make it theoretically applying to them—not at all on a fundamental level. The most they do is try to adopt those traits they think they're identifying in the words by forcing themselves to become that thing they need to become, but it's apparent that they aren't what they're trying to force themselves to be.
In the spiritual reality, nothing's real unless we actually do become different by being transformed from one thing to the other. Thinking that we could remain the same being in our mind and heart while we are transformed into His children was just another part of our ignorance, ironically because of who we were (dead in our knowledge of the spiritual reality). The reality and truth of the spiritual things are not found in the natural. In fact, the participation in and comprehension of natural things will be a stumbling block to us because they reinforce the lies of the natural reality and act to cancel out our participation in the spiritual. They will creep in and make us doubt and be double minded. If we aren't looking to the Father we will be side-tracked when we go out into the world full of natural creatures. We get our strength from the Father, and that strength gets sapped from us when our eyes behold the world and the things it values and holds up high to be worshipped by them, like ignorant animals who don't know any better.
Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For everything in the world—the cravings of sinful man, the lust of his eyes and the boasting of what he has and does—comes not from the Father but from the world. The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever.
There is a very proactive kind of re-education going on in the sons of God, a process that is making them into helpless, defenseless, weak children—not some kind of spiritually mature warriors for God. That is the old way, and continues to be the way of the humans as animals, those who rule the natural world where the stronger, smarter, more cunning one survives, where the children are slaughtered because they can't defend themselves against the stronger, smarter adult animals. Even the most basic instinct of all animals provides for the parents to go far and above their normal behavior to protect their young.
The premise that God's sons become like little children is partially rooted in the same notion, that once we become His son then His paternal eye is on us, and His heart is invested in protecting us. This is not just some theoretical device that we don't actually believe in our heart although we say we do with our mouth (because we think we're sposed to). It's actually true for us, but the deal is that it is only made true for us by the spirit who teaches us on the level of our heart so we can understand and believe it there i.e., it's not known on the same level as we know natural things. The Father's reality is not subject to the natural reality, so it doesn't have to line up with it.
Without that supernatural, miraculous teaching, then we'd be like all the animals who think they can get to God as they are, and don't comprehend the only way to God is through Jesus, who is 100% spirit now, so the way to God is 100% spiritual. The secret and hidden teaching, though, doesn't allow us to benefit in the natural or apply it to it—to use it for our own purposes which is normally about getting something for our selves. Jesus didn't actually lead the disciples to the Father before he ascended but after, once he was able to actually show them the way. Before he was only able to reveal the Father to them. After, he was able to lead them to Him, because he was already there, with the Father, and possessed the power to actually be able to do that for them, as the Father had done for and in him.
Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves.
The difference between thinking we should consider ourselves little children by trying to adopt some traits that they have, yet actually remaining adults in the real way we live and think in our heart, and actually being little children, is the process of transformation from animal to son which allows it to actually happen in us without us having to force it and fake it. Double-mindedness is what comes from this condition of being animal, yet thinking you can just reach out and grab salvation because it's yet another thing you want, and think you should have. That is arrogant thinking, right in line with the self-absorbed human animal, and can only produce a being that has put a false front on itself, thinking it won't be noticed. It often times does fool other humans because they want to be fooled, because they want to enter into the same conspiracy that promotes the same lie about the group they are forming to make an alliance with to further its own goals of getting something for itself. Like a wolf putting sheep's clothing on, it actually remains a wolf in the places that matter—in its heart where the Father sees.
Of course the little children will not be able to fully please their Father until they learn to accept the right and reject the wrong, which is a long process. That is the point of our life now: listening to the living word who is and will be speaking to us constantly. The way that happens is for the children to be in relationship with the Lord so they can be taught by him. He will not fail to instruct, but we have to understand, listen and respond to the spiritual voice, the living word that is alive and speaking to us in a true and living way.
That is the job of the Son of God now—to make God's children good children, as he was made that way by his Father. Now he has the charge and is doing the work that the Father already started and did before he was born. All of His dealings with Israel was work, and created lots of suffering in Him as He went back and forth between blessing them because they were His chosen people, and punishing them for making Him jealous, choosing others to be faithful to instead of Himself.
As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately. "Tell us," they said, "when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?"
Three questions are being asked here: 1.) When will the temple in Jerusalem be destroyed, 2.) How will we know when you are coming back, and 3.) When will the world end.
No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.
When the Son talked about coming back (Matthew 24:36 to the end of the chapter), which is his address to the second question his disciples asked him, he was talking about coming back to them to live in their bodies, which they probably didn't even understand was going to happen. That would put them in the same condition the Son was in when he was talking to them at that time (before he went to the Father to become One with Him). That would be the only thing that would allow him to lead them to the Father, to be the Teacher he said he would become for them to lead them into *all* the truth, and be their comforter because he was drawing them near the Father where they would become safe and secure on a level they didn't know existed at that time in their lives. All they knew was about the natural reality and the perspective of the animal that ruled them in it.
Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come. But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what time of night the thief was coming, he would have kept watch and would not have let his house be broken into. So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.
As to when that would happen he addressed by not answering them but instead saying they couldn't know, because knowing involves manipulation. The life that pleases the Father required them to be like the Son, so they must fully become what is pleasing to the Father, not just when it is convenient (before he comes so they can get ready). This is about purity of heart which has nothing to do with the scheming of the animal trying to get the most for himself by knowing all the information about an event.
The first part of chapter 24 seems to address the period before the temple was destroyed, when the the Son would indeed have already have come back to them and the life of the Father and Son would be inhabiting their bodies, as the Father was inhabiting his human body. That would be the time when Jeremiah's new covenant was flourishing on the earth, when Joel's prophecy about the spirit being poured out would be happening to humans. That would be Jesus coming back, because the spirit is the from that his coming back took when he came back to live in the bodies of humans as per Jeremiah and Joel.
The period of time between when the temple would be destroyed (a.d. 70) and when Jeremiah and Joel's prophecy would come to an end (around 400 a.d. or so) was when the whore of babylon was being born and becoming fully established, as he is addressing also in this chapter.
Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.
"This gospel of the kingdom being preached in the whole world" is what is recorded in Acts as a testimony to the record of the Son's words being fulfilled, largely in Paul and the others who went out into what was the whole world at that time, preaching about the Son of God and the spirit being poured out which was the witness of their testimony that made their preaching real, validating it so that they would be effective. "Then the end will come" is talking about the gospel of the kingdom which was being "preached to all nations." This was going to be the period of time when the love of the brothers, which was flourishing before a.d. 70, would begin its decline because the condition would be waning, This is when what was good (the Father and Son living in the bodies of humans as per Jeremiah and Joel) was heading toward what would eventually happen, fully around 400 a.d., as the whore started turning the truth of what was good into the mythology it presently exists as, while taking the new covenant into captivity.
So when you see standing in the holy place 'the abomination that causes desolation,' spoken of through the prophet Daniel—let the reader understand...
He doesn't say anything about the end of the natural world, only the end of the prophesied new covenant that was coming, but would end when the whore fully took the truth into captivity and the unclean animal (the nature of man the animal) replaced that life of the Father and Son in the bodies of the chosen humans (the new temple as per Paul), which was the condition of the new covenant (as per Jeremiah).
And he will send his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other.
"For as a belt is bound around a man's waist, so I bound the whole house of Israel and the whole house of Judah to me," declares the LORD, "to be my people for my renown and praise and honor."
Can the Ethiopian change his skin or the leopard its spots?
Woe to you, O Jerusalem! How long will you be unclean?"
All the while He dealt with unfaithful Israel, God the Father was patiently waiting for His promised and anticipated Son to come and do the work he was chosen to do, for the Father's sake, spoken of by the mouths of His holy prophets, to whom the FAther kept revealing this truth. And they kept speaking it as they kept pointing to him, promising his coming by the hope that was put into them by the spirit of the Father, who Himself kept wanting to be reminded that the precious Son was going to come. When he came he was practically nothing in the natural world, to the vast majority of humans existing and ruling the world because they were animals who could never please the FAther and he was the Son who would give the Father what he always wanted—perfect obedience, untouched by the animal nature that ruins everything, which would be able to get the Father the family He wanted, the Son as the head of the family who would teach his brothers how to be as he was.
The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and they are life.
The value of the Son was and is nothing in the natural world, to the animals who have always ruled it. The made up jesus has held some value for the humans who were able to, and still do, exploit that lie for their own gain. The most the humans can ever do, even if they have some superficial truth about certain things regarding the Son, the devil, or the spirit, is try to mesh that little understanding with their natural experiences and world they live in. As soon as they do, it all becomes ruined by the lie that the natural actually means something.
Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit.
Only the sons are able to see that the natural doesn't count, and only because that truth has been planted in them and it's growing. In that respect it remains alive, unlike the static, dead truth that the animals possess, which is the same stagnant thing week in and week out until they're put into the ground. It breaks down in that sense to being just some facts that never grow or change for them, so they are as stagnant as the same truth which never changes for them because it's stagnant and dead.
The beauty of the life of God in His own chosen sons is that it grows and changes according to His intention, not so that it changes into something different but that it changes into something truer, more and more valid as the truth is disclosed in them, as the life grows and are more able to come near to the Father. We learn more about our own experience and tendencies, the world and its inhabitants with all their tendencies, the things that are important to the Father, the purpose for everything, why things are the way they are, the work that the firstborn Son did and why he is so valuable to the Father and the rest of the family of God, who our real brothers are, and everything else as it relates to the reality of the spiritual world that just a few years before we weren't privy to. All we had before was an anticipation of its realization, but not the guarantee or when it would come. As we get nearer to the Father we must be moving further away from the things that perish as everything becomes more true and real about the things that matter because they don't go away like everything in the natural creation does.
We are being changed from what we were before to what we are becoming, and the process is alive and moving, and especially it is growing and becoming more true and real as we go along. From base, ordinary animal—like every other son of Adam—to extraordinary, spiritual sons of the living God. And it all happens 100% in the spiritual world where God is true and alive, not in the natural where He cannot be found. From what all God's sons (except the firstborn who was never an animal in the sense that the animal nature was allowed to ever rule or even touch him—in which case he couldn't have been the Lamb of God who was an acceptable sacrifice) were before, to what they became. We have some of those stories, describing this metamorphosis, preserved for us to read and comprehend. The same process that happened in Paul will also happen in us if we allow the spirit to have his way.
So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God's law; but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God—through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God's law, but in the sinful nature a slave to the law of sin (of the animal).
Paul is not a superhero, only a human to whom the Son chose to reveal the Father, then transform him into a son of God. Paul was on his way to kill and torment the sons who were being born according to Joel's prophesy when he was confronted by the Lord. He wasn't looking for him, nor was he acting in a way that made him worthy to be chosen to become a son of God. God chose to give birth to Paul, and he grew into what he became by listening to the word and obeying, and being transformed into another person.
Resistance to the spirit's urgings are inevitable, and we will want to cling to the old way because it's all we knew. Like the dog going back to its vomit we will feel the pull to do what feels good to our old man because it's a feeling that we're used to—that we take comfort and satisfaction in. It's scary to let go of what we're so used to in the depths of our being, what we actually are. We can't transform ourselves, all we can do is try and want to become good children whom the Father can love i.e., not animals who cannot come near to Him.
Choosing to let the animal nature rule us is not necessarily failing but learning obedience through the things that we suffer—unless we refuse to learn by the suffering that ensues. As we become more sensitive to the spirit we learn what we shouldn't be doing, the things that hurt us and this new life that is trying to grow in us. It will be clear to each how to nurture the life that is growing, and conversely what stunts it, because of the personal covenant the Lord makes with us according to the new way. It's not the same for everyone, although there will be some concurrence. The world of the humans is the world filled with the nature that rules them, yet how the sons interact with it and allow or disallow it to rule us will be slightly different for each. What we have in common is the life and love that's growing in us to love Him and as we are encouraged, to love and encourage the other members that we know are in the family (because they understand what we're saying). It is only by the life that is deliberately put into us that we are also able to love the other brothers, because they are the sons of the One who is putting the life in us. When we do that, we actually look like our real Father instead of the snake who used to rule us.
The Jews all know the way I have lived ever since I was a child, from the beginning of my life in my own country, and also in Jerusalem. They have known me for a long time and can testify, if they are willing, that according to the strictest sect of our religion, I lived as a Pharisee. And now it is because of my hope in what God has promised our fathers that I am on trial today. This is the promise our twelve tribes are hoping to see fulfilled as they earnestly serve God day and night. O king, it is because of this hope that the Jews are accusing me. Why should any of you consider it incredible that God raises the dead?
The natural world is not going to change around us to accommodate the new life growing inside. It will always be there to envelop us if we allow it, stronger than ever and filled with everything that the men of the world live by. It doesn't matter where we go, it will always be there waiting to lead us off our path leading to the Father and carry us away to serve it instead of God. Before we had many things to take comfort in and find fulfillment. Now our solitary purpose gets more and more defined as we grow up into God—to listen and comprehend the living word inside us, to fellowship with the Son, to know our Father's love and to live in that, for that, for the family.
But whatever was to my profit I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things.
The things that once mattered so much to us—that were indeed life as we knew it—are going away and will mean less and less. The things that seemed not very appealing before now are becoming like life to us, a kind of nourishment that strengthens our inner man. Single mindedness in their devotion to the Father's will and desire—to Him—is what Jesus' disciples grew up into as the life grew within them. It didn't happen overnight.
I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in him.
The mind of the slave/servant is something that has to grow in the man born of God. As we listen to His voice and obey that within us, we begin to abandon the voice of the devil, the serpent, that wily old man who used to rule us—the nature that rules the humans perfectly without them being aware. Then we become so delighted with the consequences of obedience that we are happy to assume the role of a faithful slave, single mindedly desiring to serve our master who rewards us faithfully. In contrast to having it shoved on us, we willingly choose to become a slave because we know that that position is infinitely superior than even the highest position any man could ever attain to in the world of humans.