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THE BACKGROUND IN PATHOLOGY
AND THE FOREGROUND IN REALITY
THE BACKGROUND IN PATHOLOGY
What, asks Jeremiah the prophet of the Lord, is the chaff to the wheat ?
Nothing much! is the most slender answer. Mere garbage! is a stronger one. A left-over! is an answer quite intelligible and apt, also. These are all true.
What however is the object of the prophet's Spirit-directed (II Peter 1:20-21), divinely donated scorn ? It is what is a pretence at being the word of the Lord, that is, what the Lord desires to say to man, without actually being it.
It would be like having a child's toy car, and seeking to do your annual vacation in it. It is rather more than ludicrous; it bespeaks either an unsettled mentality or a sense of whimsy too gross to be gorgeous ... that is, if it is SERIOUSLY contemplated.
Yet, and this is the thrust in Jeremiah 23 at this point, these prophets of their own mouths, oral cavities into which the Lord put precisely NOTHING of His word, give out their own delusive, intrusive, vapid and altogether arrogant and presumptuous nothings. He is not alone in such remonstration.
Thus, Micah puts it also in that perfect complementarity as if from one author, that smooth-ducted symphony with which you see so much in the Bible, which is like the mutually integrated curvings of a super-sonic aircraft, so intimately and deftly joined together, that you scarcely see anything but the oneness of it all. It does ONE thing, this aircraft, as one whole, being of one design.
It is, again, like the author of a book, the various scenes and the scenario intimately and closely intertwined in a development that is yet, overall, a unitary tableau of expression.
What then does Micah say, and where, such a thing ? It is to be found in Micah 3:5-7. The directly parallel part is in red; but the entirety is more than an echo of Jeremiah (the more ludicrous a concept, since Micah wrote first); for it is a primary impact from a surging source, just as is the word of Jeremiah. It is not as if one imitated the other; each has a highly individual thrust and context, each a wholly conjoint and withering scorn and each for the same reason, though with different specialties of presentation and impact.
"Thus says the Lord concerning the prophets
Who make my people stray;
Who chant "Peace"
While they chew with their teeth,
But who prepare war against him
Who puts nothing into their mouths:
"Therefore you shall have night without vision,
And you shall have darkness without divination;
The sun shall go down on the prophets,
And the day shall be dark for them.
"So the seers shall be ashamed,
And the diviners abashed;
Indeed they shall all cover their lips;
For there is no answer from God."
NOTHING is put in the mouths of these knowledgeable impostors. Now there is something about the term 'impostor' which suggests some sneaky and creaky thief of truth who is seeking to appear to be what he is not, in all devious dishonesty. No doubt something radical has happened to these false prophets (as in II Thessalonians 2:10, they did not receive the love of the truth and THEREFORE they have an active delusion); but it does not follow that they are NOW conscious of imposture. They merely thrive and strive, in many cases taking cash payment for their prowess (cf. II Peter 2:1ff.!, Jude 11), at best Balaams built on his prototype, seduced by spiritual incontinence. For all their brave words, they appear as inwardly lusting for what they cannot abandon, the thrust of their own dynamic.
Jude, like Jeremiah compared with Micah, has his own characteristic and remarkable passion in this arena, and its intimate correlativity with the words of the other prophets is as remarkable as is its individuality and remorseless thrust. Listen to this, in the realm of 'chaff denunciation' if you will, from this third exponent of the word of that one Lord who inspires each and carries each along with the same fire (Jude 5ff.).
"But I want to remind you, though you once knew this, that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe.
"And the angels who did not keep their proper domain, but left their own abode, He has reserved in everlasting chains under darkness for the judgment of the great day;
as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities around them in a similar manner to these,
having given themselves over to sexual immorality and gone after strange flesh,
are set forth as an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.
"Likewise also these dreamers defile the flesh, reject authority,
and speak evil of dignitaries.
Yet Michael the archangel, in contending with the devil, when he disputed about the body of Moses, dared not bring against him a reviling accusation, but said, "The Lord rebuke you!"
"But these speak evil of whatever they do not know;
and whatever they know naturally, like brute beasts,
in these things they corrupt themselves.
"Woe to them! For they have gone in the way of Cain, have run greedily in the error of Balaam for profit, and perished in the rebellion of Korah."
Just the same is the intensity, the immensity of the declaration, its sheer primary force, its intimacy of knowledge of examples, its thrust of exposure, its dedication to the proclamation of judgment fit and apt for such illicit rampagings as proceed from the mouths of false prophets. As to these, they speak not only as if it were providing the authorised words of another person, but those of God their Creator, whose genuine words are health and power for man, pardon and peace! Not these ones however, are in that category, words of fraud which cheat and deny, like doctors conspiring with pharmacists to exclude victims of disease from the proper medicine.
In those denunciations in Jude, judgment and analysis combine, and his epistle in the New Testament continues in verses 12ff. (red signifying special relevance to the point we are here making).
"These are spots in your love feasts, while they feast with you without fear,
serving only themselves.
"They are clouds without water, carried about by the winds;
late autumn trees without fruit, twice dead, pulled up by the roots;
raging waves of the sea, foaming up their own shame;
wandering stars for whom is reserved the blackness of darkness forever.
"Now Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied about these men also, saying,
"Behold, the Lord comes with ten thousands of His saints,
to execute judgment on all,
to convict all who are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds
which they have committed in an ungodly way,
and of all the harsh things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him."
"These are grumblers, complainers, walking according to their own lusts;
and they mouth great swelling words, flattering people to gain advantage."
Now Jude, just like Jeremiah and Micah (although the last named waits till later chapters for this aspect, especially that glorious Ch. 7) brings the discharge to an end with a charge.
"But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith,
praying in the Holy Spirit,
keep yourselves in the love of God,
looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.
"And on some have compassion, making a distinction;
but others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire,
hating even the garment defiled by the flesh.
"Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling,
And to present you faultless
Before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy,
To God our Savior,
Who alone is wise,
Be glory and majesty,
Dominion and power,
Both now and forever.
While it is true that Micah is caused to wait to a later chapter for his approach in this delightful aspect, what he does declare at the end of the same chapter from which the above quotation of his was taken, is also a mighty contrast to the feeble intentions of the false prophets who chew with their teeth, into whose mouths the Lord puts NOTHING! as He declares.
These later words, then, in Micah Ch. 3 show power and spirit, and a positive thrust which, even if it includes judgment, is not consistent in weakness with it, but rather, persistent as an outrushing stream of flame, it almost seems to set the pages of the book aflame. Strength and might, power and divinely accorded wisdom and wit, all are given to his divinely directed word, leaving the atmosphere of the denounced offenders like that of stale, feeble white bread in the presence of a rich and nutritious wholemeal loaf, nutty and flavourful, a delight to eat ... or like chaff in the presence of wheat!
Let us hear him, before seeing in Jeremiah that closer parallel to Jude.
"But truly I am full of power by the Spirit of the Lord,
And of justice and might,
To declare to Jacob his transgression
And to Israel his sin.
"Now hear this,
You heads of the house of Jacob
And rulers of the house of Israel,
Who abhor justice
And pervert all equity,
Who build up Zion with bloodshed
And Jerusalem with iniquity:
Her heads judge for a bribe,
Her priests teach for pay,
And her prophets divine for money.
they lean on the Lord, and say,
"Is not the Lord among us?
No harm can come upon us."
"Therefore because of you
Zion shall be plowed like a field,
Jerusalem shall become heaps of ruins,
And the mountain of the temple
Like the bare hills of the forest."
To Jeremiah, then, we turn for the more conspicuous parallel in form, to the word through Jude. Here we find not only our title (What is the Chaff to the Wheat!), in Jeremiah 23, but these introductory words of what is a vehement and fiery denunciation, yet one with a composure and coverage which makes it like an acetylene torch, covering the place required with just the right temperature and arc. With these, we come to the same positive thrust for health and deliverance, just as cigarette smokers might have the yielding eyes confronted with their abominable misuse of their bodies, followed by the clear call to health.
In that case of lung abuse, there may be no ultimate ground for health, which makes the appeal far more limited; but in all the biblical cases we examine, there is an ultimate, not pleasure or pain, not self-respect or self-fulfilment: it is the righteousness and integrity of their Creator who has for them a life which is not based on delusion, confusion or infusion for that matter of philosophic fantasy, the literary equivalent of nicotine, addictive and poisonous, summoning death. It is His own (John 15).
First, consider his parallel to the other denuniciations of chattering chaff.
We find this in Jeremiah 23:9-17:
"My heart within me is broken
Because of the prophets;
All my bones shake.
I am like a drunken man,
And like a man whom wine has overcome,
Because of the Lord,
And because of His holy words.
"For the land is full of adulterers;
For because of a curse the land mourns.
The pleasant places of the wilderness are dried up.
Their course of life is evil,
And their might is not right.
"For both prophet and priest are profane;
Yes, in My house I have found their wickedness," says the Lord.
"Therefore their way shall be to them
Like slippery ways;
In the darkness they shall be driven on
And fall in them;
For I will bring disaster on them,
The year of their punishment," says the Lord.
"And I have seen folly in the prophets of Samaria:
They prophesied by Baal
And caused My people Israel to err.
Also I have seen a horrible thing in the prophets of Jerusalem:
They commit adultery and walk in lies;
They also strengthen the hands of evildoers,
So that no one turns back from his wickedness.
"All of them are like Sodom to Me,
And her inhabitants like Gomorrah.
"Therefore thus says the Lord of hosts concerning the prophets:
‘Behold, I will feed them with wormwood,
And make them drink the water of gall;
For from the prophets of Jerusalem
Profaneness has gone out into all the land.’ "
Thus says the Lord of hosts:
"Do not listen to the words of the prophets who prophesy to you.
They make you worthless;
They speak a vision of their own heart,
Not from the mouth of the Lord.
"They continually say to those who despise Me,
‘The Lord has said, 'You shall have peace’;
And to everyone who walks according to the dictates of his own heart, they say,
‘No evil shall come upon you.’ "
Some of these lines have been brought nearer to the margin in order to help the reader to see the cause and effect relationship between the fault and the reproof, the folly and the judgment.
Now here in Jeremiah you already see the therapeutic aspect, "they make you worthless" in moral summary and arrest. But Jeremiah goes much further in lament and analysis, exposing folly in its heartland, and X-raying its vast intrusion into loveliness and life, with its chafing chatter.
Thus in Jeremiah 23:18-22, we have this lament and song of grief:
"For who has stood in the counsel of the Lord,
And has perceived and heard His word?
Who has marked His word and heard it?
"Behold, a whirlwind of the Lord has gone forth in fury—
A violent whirlwind!
It will fall violently on the head of the wicked.
"The anger of the Lord will not turn back
Until He has executed and performed the thoughts of His heart.
In the latter days you will understand it perfectly.
"I have not sent these prophets, yet they ran.
I have not spoken to them, yet they prophesied.
"But if they had stood in My counsel,
And had caused My people to hear My words,
Then they would have turned them from their evil way
And from the evil of their doings."
Here is the aggravation of slithery spiritual substitution.
Not only have the false prophets given a vision of their own hearts, but this has displaced the impact of the actual words of the Creator. We learn in passing that at the end of the Age (always in Jeremiah, Micah and Jude coming to the blessed appearing of the glorious Saviour in power), this phenomenon of false prophecy, of inglorious and galling substitution of the word of man for the word of God in the apparent name of divinity, will reach its completion, culmination, its 'perfection', in the sense of its most ultimate expression.
It would resemble, this, in medical pathology, the last rasping cough of the consumptive which is the auditory side of his slipping into the mortuary, spent and rent. It is not perfection in any positive sense, but merely the final focus of this disease. It is to come, then, the phenomenon of false prophecy, in the name of God or the name of whatever is desired or to be designated, and it is to come in multitudinous force and with vast forces.
That, incidentally, is the case; for when has this earth had such a plethora and infestation, such a sidling and such a sampling, such an array of super-market type kits of apostasy, of heresy, of decline, of degradation of the word of God, of knowledegeable ignorance and ignorant 'knowledge', knowledge as Paul puts it, falsely so called (I Timothy 6:20). This is a the term including ALL knowledge's varieties, pseudo-scientific like the early Greek philosophers, jointly philosophic and scientific, leaning one way or the other in this or that pollution, personal knowledge and intuitive, aspiring religious revelation from the mouth into which God puts nothing, and all other types whatever - the word of God is not to be reduced in scope by the mind of man intrusively or otherwise! On this topic, see Cascade ... Ch. 3.
God has warned us of the whole gamut of pseudo-truth, garrulous philosophy, the whole parade of pseudo-science, victim of sophistry's invasion. AVOID it, is the word. Avoid the avoidance at the peril of your obedience, for it is like a voluntary bath in tar (cf. The gods of naturalism have no go!).
Sects and sensations abound, while men try to 'unify' error, combine it with truth and call it wisdom (cf. News 121, 122, Of the Earth, Earthy ... Ch. 13, Things Old and New, Epilogue 10).
Nearly anything and everything
|from pragmatic world leaders seeking to induce religious unity for their own purposes,|
to false prophets swinging their books into the arena,
from temple of understanding to temple of opportunity,
from magic glasses to magical remedies,
from bread into body to blood-red tears (cf. Matthew
from seats to see Christ return to settings for universal
(cf. SMR pp. 867ff., 1032ff., Heart and Soul ... Chs. 9-11, Things Old and New Chs. 9ff.):
|is to be found in its unbiblical revolt, in its seething godless squalor,|
|just as it was foretold (Matthew 24:24, II Peter 2, II Timothy 3, I Timothy 4), and characterised).|
it is all there, confusing creator and creature, and the false teeth of man with the teethings of philosophy, and both with truth.
If man without God, in a nation tormenting truth,
is to be found and judged, as so often in the Old Testament
(cf. Ezekiel 26-32, Isaiah 14):
then what of a whole world engaged in fiddling with His word,
rejecting it, patronizing it, conjoining it with other words,
from the past, from this or that source!
In the end, this is what – II Peter 3:10-13… Patience past (II Peter 3:9), it goes with a rumble.
What could you expect ? What is truly amazing is the love which could wait so long, the love of the Creator's heart, implemented in practice, fulfilled in agony, victorious in compassion, but not witless in leaving evil to replace good!
Freedom can falsify truth, but truth can show the fraudulence of mischievously
misused liberty, setting itself up to be
making lords of the dependent, and gods out of their goals.
It is as Jeremiah declared, that in these last times, we should see it perfectly. Now, as the body of this world becomes as if inebriated with its follies, pretensions and asinine aspirations in its own name and right, it is reeling. Its modes and changes are like those of an advanced disease. It is as if kaleidoscopes had become a ritual instead of art, the word of man a relish for the surrealism of theosophy.
It was not other in the day of Jeremiah, but the art forms were less numerous, and less internationally regulated in their regimens. Now we face the ferment of desire: IF THEY HAD STOOD IN THE COUNSEL of the Lord, they would have been delivered. IF ONLY they had listened!
Just this note is sounded in Isaiah 48:17-20:
"Thus says the Lord, your Redeemer,
The Holy One of Israel:
"I am the Lord your God,
Who teaches you to profit,
Who leads you by the way you should go.
"Oh, that you had heeded My commandments!
Then your peace would have been like a river,
And your righteousness like the waves of the sea.
"Your descendants also would have been like the sand,
And the offspring of your body like the grains of sand;
His name would not have been cut off
Nor destroyed from before Me."
"Go forth from Babylon!
Flee from the Chaldeans!"
In this way for that time then, as for this one now, comes the call for separation (cf. The Kingdom of Heaven Ch. 7), for leaving the milieu of pollution and continuing in the work of the Lord: not mixed, like oil and cream on top of the milk, but fearless in the favour of the Lord; not mute in the midst of pollution, dumb dogs that do not bark, sipping tea with the same flavour of revolt, and finding it hard to digest, but attested truth as did the godly saints before us.
LOVE seeks the good of its neighbour, and THEREFORE flees Babylon (cf. Biblical Blessings Ch. 2), that symbol of mixed false religiosity, and seeks to aggregate with the people of the Lord (cf. Malachi 3:13-18), and to fight the battle of faith with the love of Christ and the sword of His word which, though it spills no blood, saves many souls! It does not STAY in Babylon, but has other work to do with those of like mind.
IF ONLY! It is seen again in full intensity when Christ laments for Jerusalem as seen in Luke 19:42...
If you had known, even you, in this your day, the things which belong to your peace...
But now they are hidden from your eyes!
Red is the colour of warning, and the dolour is gripped by judgment, for the day has passed and the folly has spread like mould, fast moving and reticulating its fearful fingers throughout, as if it ran in a race to spoil.
Gripped by this sorrow of heart and depth of devotion to a people cultivating deafness, Christ announced its result. This is intimate and correlative with the message of Jeremiah, itself inspired by the Spirit of Christ (cf. I Peter 1:10-12).
"Am I a God near at hand," says the Lord,
"And not a God afar off?
"Can anyone hide himself in secret places,
So I shall not see him?"
says the Lord;
"Do I not fill heaven and earth?"
says the Lord."
Then comes the song of the tragedy of
displacement and divine confrontation with fraud,
perpetrated in impertinence in His name.
" 'I have heard what the prophets have said who prophesy lies in My name, saying,
‘I have dreamed, I have dreamed!’
" 'How long will this be in the heart of the prophets who prophesy lies? Indeed they are prophets of the deceit of their own heart, who try to make My people forget My name by their dreams which everyone tells his neighbor, as their fathers forgot My name for Baal.
'The prophet who has a dream, let him tell a dream;
And he who has My word, let him speak My word faithfully.
What is the chaff to the wheat?' says the Lord.
'Is not My word like a fire?' says the Lord,
'And like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces?
'Therefore behold, I am against the prophets,' says the Lord,
'who steal My words every one from his neighbor.
'Behold, I am against the prophets,' says the Lord,
'who use their tongues and say, ‘He says.’
'Behold, I am against those who prophesy false dreams,'
says the Lord,
'and tell them, and cause My people to err
by their lies and by their recklessness.
'Yet I did not send them or command them; therefore they shall not profit this people at all,'
says the Lord."
Then, a little later in this chapter, there comes the judgment on Israel, the acquiescent milieu which tolerated such things.
" ...therefore behold, I, even I, will utterly forget you and forsake you,
and the city that I gave you and your fathers,
and will cast you out of My presence."
FOREGROUND IN FOCUS
That, of course, as always, what He said, what He forecast, is what He did. It was so in the Jerusalem of Jeremiah's day, destroyed, in that of Christ's day, destroyed utterly, in the case of Nineveh as in Nahum, of Tyre as in Ezekiel, in the debasement of Egypt as in that same prophet; it was so in the destruction of Babylon as in Jeremiah 50-51, as it has been in archeology, where in temporary ignorance it has been made a base from arguments from 'silence' for assaults on the Bible, as in the case of the biblically mentioned Hittite people, 'lost', but later found in secular archeology.
It was so too in the ludicrous knowledgeability, knowledge-falsely-so-called, of Welhausen in his impure imagination that Moses could not have had the erudite knowledge for the books of the law, when archeology later showed Hammurabi with vast resources of learning hundreds of years before, and Ebla has more recently been seen centuries before Moses with enormous literary accomplishment, legal expertise and commercial-mathematical erudition. How ignorance speaks; but the Bible remains, unrepentant for its realism, the word of God intact, because truth does not waver. It is one of its characteristics. It finds you out, instead!
These things we have often seen (cf. Pitter ... Ch. 4, and consult index SMR on archeology). Now we see how the very psychological spectrum becoming so plain in the 21st century AD is as Christ forecast in Luke 21, fear and frustration, as in Matthew 24, mounting waves of dynamic evil, while the coasts rage and the earth is threatened with endless blood letting as in Revelation 6.
Chaff is inconsequential, and like wind-driven chaff is the ever increasing marvel of MAN the WONDERFUL, SUPERMAN the evolving, as reckless imagination had it: that tool of a Hitler which was rather an exponent of devolution, the whole nation suffering from the mad delusion of the false prophet. The word of man is mere chaff, when in opposition or supplement to the word of God, as if His mouth were available for inserts, as if man were dentist extraordinary to the divine! Rather the whine of bombs in World War II on England was the drill, and it hurt a nation moving rapidly from its biblical moorings, to the present spiritual thrust towards unity at all costs, in defamation of the mouth of the Lord.
If England is here brought to attention, it is not as if it were any worse than many, but that it has fallen faster and further, having been eminent compared with many, though not now, in its now increasingly forsaken testimony of the truth of the Bible in its national life. As this goes, so does its eminence. While it is not now by any means the Tasmania of Europe, it is no longer the lion of the nations. Spiritual and national eminence seem to have fallen together, like horse and rider in a steeple-chase!
Isaiah has made it clear in his direct statement in 8:20 (made red to demarcate it here as we move from Isaiah 8:13).
"The Lord of hosts, Him you shall hallow;
Let Him be your fear,
And let Him be your dread.
"He will be as a sanctuary,
But a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense
To both the houses of Israel,
As a trap and a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem.
"And many among them shall stumble;
They shall fall and be broken,
Be snared and taken."
"Bind up the testimony,
Seal the law among my disciples.
And I will wait on the Lord,
Who hides His face from the house of Jacob;
And I will hope in Him.
"Here am I and the children whom the Lord has given me!
We are for signs and wonders in Israel
From the Lord of hosts,
Who dwells in Mount Zion.
"And when they say to you,
'Seek those who are mediums and wizards, who whisper and mutter,'
should not a people seek their God?
Should they seek the dead on behalf of the living?
"To the law and to the testimony!
If they do not speak according to this word,
it is because there is no light in them.
"They will pass through it hard pressed and hungry; and it shall happen, when they are hungry,
that they will be enraged and curse their king and their God, and look upward.
"Then they will look to the earth, and see trouble and darkness, gloom of anguish;
and they will be driven into darkness."
There is to be the fear, the reverence towards the ONE GOD who provides the ONLY SANCTUARY, who traps the trappers, and who warns: it is to the living God whom you seek, not to medium, not to wizard, to whisperer, to workers of secret marvels or distorted thought, exponents of their own muddle.
IF then, they speak some other mutter, mumble, musing, whatever it be, and if they do not follow the word of the Lord, whatever their synthesis, whatever their construction, allegation, it is because THERE IS NO LIGHT IN THEM.
It is not, the word of the Lord, asserts, because they have a rather dimmer version of the virtue of truth than they otherwise might. It is not, he indicates, that they have a rather less perfect concept of what is divine. The case is far otherwise. OMIT GOD, in dealing with the divine, the human, the universe, the truth, the way for man, the grounds for light, and the amount of light that is yours is ZERO.
One recalls in chemistry when at Scotch College, Melbourne, that the teacher of some eminence used to have a way of calling out the lowest examination results first, gradually ascending to the heights over 80 and 90. One student, alas, would have his name called (name hidden): Friar, nought!
NOTHING! Nothing at all. No marks secured. It seemed almost incredible how this could be attained...
Yet by their thousand, this is precisely what is being done in the ways of exponents and their followings in the fields both philosophic and religious, with political dabblings and inserts, scientific outpourings as if philosophy had forgotten to leave its calling card, and 'science' had to use its own name for the illicit and irrational ramblings which are gate-crashing into its proper premises. They OMIT what the Creator has said, to see its attested authority and invested power, to follow its discourse, accept its principles even though it alone has stood unchallengeable as to truth for millenia; and they get their divine rating for their confused omission, and polluted intrusions. They are rated as follows:
PSEUDO-SCIENCE, NOUGHT! PHILOSOPHIC PRETENSION, NOUGHT!
THIS is what the word of God says: Take a look at the word of the Lord, what is the work of the prophets of the Lord, and it is Isaiah who focusses the then coming Christ so amply in Isaiah 2, 4, 7, 9, 11, 12, 22, 28-29, 32, 40, 48, 49-55 and so on. LOOK at that! DO you see it ? There is the key of scripture and the door of the Messiah, the Christ to be rejected by Israel (Isaiah 49:7), as He was, and to be preached to the Gentiles (as He was) with the Gospel as depicted prophetically by Isaiah (as it has been), based on the work of the Christ who died as He had to do, at around 30 A.D., since God said and in this attested His entire, even arithmetically precise control. This is the milieu. What then is being said of those who do not speak according to this divine outlay of words, of truth, of information, of remedy ?
It is this. IF they do not speak in accord with this, there is NO TRUTH. Where is there not truth ? There is no truth IN THEM.
The truth is alive and well, is God (John 14:6, Acts 4:11-12, Isaiah 43:10-11, Philippians 2), but His wilful exclusion as to what HE HAS SAID, or its distortion, or selective treatment for addition or for subtraction (cf. Deuteronomy 4, 12, Proverbs 30:6, Matthew 5:17-20, Revelation 22:18ff.): this is something which has a meaning indeed.
What then does it mean ? It means that those who do this HAVE NO TRUTH IN THEM.
Wait you say! It does not say 'truth' but 'light'. This is true, but then light in this setting is the name for what manifests reality, truth. Thus Christ is the light of the world, and he who walks in and with Him will not walk in darkness (John 8:12). This is what He says.
Send forth Thy light and Thy truth let them lead me! thunders the urgent desire of David in Psalm 43, as the Lord moves him to seek, with the boldness of a loved child from a caring parent. Light is the symbol for what allows you to see what is there. No light in the sight of God means no truth. That is why in Isaiah 8, after it refers to the sheer folly of not following the word of God, it depicts the results for Israel in the days to come: "Then they will look to the earth, and see trouble and darkness, gloom of anguish, and they will be driven into darkness." That is why, on the contrary, in Isaiah 60, when the Messiah is in view and the remedy which He constitutes is in visible manifestation, you can read this: "
For your light has come!
And the glory of the Lord is risen upon you.
"For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth,
And deep darkness the people;
But the Lord will arise over you,
And His glory will be seen upon you.
"The Gentiles shall come to your light,
And kings to the brightness of your rising."
That is how it can be written in Isaiah 60:20:
"The Lord shall be your everlasting light."
As to this light, as to the truth, as to the divine realities, to understanding, those so departing from the word of the Lord are biblically defined to have NO LIGHT!
You may have this or that concept of what happens if you do this or that, that is data awareness; but truth requires understanding, seeing things in the perspective which is true and sustainable, not in detached retina type of obscuration.
This then is the foreground which is in focus. Without the word of God, contrary to it, you are as far astray as any navigator, seeking France from England, and finding himself unaccountably near Iceland. You are out of touch, out of truth, out of perspective, out of range, out of mind and out of order.
Chaff ? It is rubbish. Darkness when the light shines (and it has shone cf. Isaiah 9:1-2) ? it is the result of obscuration, obfuscation, visual demise or some shocking combination. Seething unspirituality is the lot of those who imagine that success, prosperity, salary, prestige, accomplishment, acknowledgement, peer group acceptance, or consensus makes the way for man. These are like a pilot who flies to secure a way for his petrol, much praised by the sellers of petroleum, but has forgotten that there is such a thing as a DESIRED DESTINATION. No, no, and again no, he shouts. It is all about movement and motion in the air, about landing rights and using fuel, while the passengers enjoy it. There is no such thing as a proper destination.
Alas, there is however, even his own! ... when the flight is over, and the use of equipment is construed. Where mercy is mocked, judgment is rock solid.
Mere midget fidgets, without understanding of the purpose, the power or the hour of life, which God has given, they fritter away their hours when holiness was the option, yes the the highway of holiness their provided path, the power of God their waiting delight and His company their privilege inestimable.
That power which is beyond all human conception, not because there is a logical impasse, but because rather it resolves all impasse since it IS there; that power which is able to dismiss natural law, as a child could dismiss an acceleration result when his toy train would have fallen but does not, because his own hand steadies it as it 'thunders by'; that dynamic which can invent what is not there at will, as in Christ's feeding of the 5000, or stilling the storm: it is the thrust of that One who having written the earth, can easily bring in what He will and when and how He will. It is miracle ?
Of course, but quite natural for the supernatural. His world has laws, however, not in order that they should not work; but then, HE has His world, not in order that He could not work in it with whatever testimony of truth He desires!
He has desired to make it clear to one, to all, and He has not strangely or fondly, determined that HIS WORDS are His alone, and not a tea-party for theologians or philosophers, yes or politicians who can butt in and revise it: as if the finite could match the infinite; or as if the squalling distraints of diseased discussion, never resolving, always involving, were in some way worthy to be compared with the determinate words of the all-knowing God who having made, does not invade, but declares.
Moreover, it is for the good of the creation He declares; for it is not as if there were anything to be gained from any universe of His own exhaustive construction, for His own being. This is already self-sufficient and without restraint, constraint or omission, delimited by none, limited by none, psychically or morally, spiritually or physically indirectly, or in any realm created or uncreated, imaginary or not. If it were not so, He would be a mere creature of someone else's compilation, and we would be talking beside the point, as if hypnotised by our own state, into exporting it where it does not belong, and injuring thought into the strait-jacket of vanity if not inanity.
Leave hypnosis to those desiring escape from reality; let us face it instead.
God makes and declares. He warns the intruders whose dishonest dealings incite His wrath; for they act to foil and to spoil His creation to which, in man, He has even given the freedom so to act; but He has known and He has spoken and He does what He says, for none can stop Him. Man can however be stopped, though the Lord wait long; for in patience He enables the truth to be seen, observed, tested, exhibited, applied, verified, validated, in reason, in realisation, in history, in spirit and in ways innumerable. Thus in eternity no voice can be raised.
Man without God does not raise himself; he razes himself, and the prediction of God is simply this, that if HE DID NOT INTERVENE categorically at the end, that is what the end of man would be (Matthew 24:22).
It all depends on God, rationally or historically, personally or politically. He has made and He has declared.
This He does, and the omission of this power in the vain thoughts of wandering man is like forgetting to breathe and needing some kind of lung-respiratory mechanism instead. To live without God in power is like thinking without God in mind, or walking without God in the race for His good pleasure. It is a darkness inescapable with problems insoluble, called philosophic thought; and schema unthinkable, called the philosophy of science, with educational results horrendous, called the understanding of the child, who now can screech and scream and throw tantrums at will, as the other adults wait upon its driven majesty, and fail to bring it up.
The world without God, as it increasingly chooses to be in ways religious, irreligious, irrational and confrontational, is as one who has retired. It has retired from reality.
3. GROUND IN
and SITE in the GROUND
Is mortal man, irrelevant to his birth, since he is not there to oversee it, irresponsible from his birth when he does not relate to the Source of his spirit, the moulder of his mind, the designer of his body or the creator of temporary, temporal, limited and contained being such as he himself is in body: is this mortal man to affirm himself then ? Is he to say, I am and there is none besides me! Or I understand, and it is within me!
Is he to arrive at deity, and have all-comprehending prowess because he was born into a world he neither made nor understands, surrounded in his godless goo-ing and ah-ing with irresolvable antinomies, irrational oddities and chronic and uncapitulating antilogies, always talking, never resolving ?
Is he to do this
while his own race kills itself with murders innumerable, disguised as war,
hostilities unthinkable inventing causes for them,
and he indulges his irresponsible self with morals of his own making
in a world which is not actually there, but merely imagined,
using words for which he did not create the matrix permitting formulation or the spirit to understand:
and then proceed with personal abilities to err and to do so wilfully,
though yet incapable of plumbing the depths of the liberties of will or the compulsions of necessities
or to find any way out of the impasses between theories and practicalities,
so that his world evaporates like milk left too long in a hot pot on the stove ?
Is he to do this, while his world so adopted in such wisdom, contorts itself, writhes in his mismanagement, the human resources die of starvation, of fatness, of stupidity and of wit misused, hating one another, tolerating one another, misunderstanding one another, rudderless, all right, none right, in a moral sea that storms incessantly ?
What a heritage has this revolt created!
It is not the revolt of the dolt in the sense that dolts are there, and then they revolt; but in this, that BECAUSE they revolt from the WORD of God who is also the REASON (same Greek word) for all things, the EXPLANATION and the DIRECTOR, moreover the CREATOR and the REMEDY, they are without remedy, and since this involves mind, spirit and body, they are given over to a surplus of death and its preliminaries, a steadily dissolving environment of mind, spirit and body, thus qualifying in the dolt region BY WILL, and not by character. If you aim at a lamp post, knowledge is not yours, but suicide. If you do not look, your irresponsibility is in the domain of the foolish. If you REFUSE to look, then the net result is the dolt.
The FOOL, says God, has said there is no God (Psalm 53). That is what He says, and He knows. It has to be so in the end. However bright a person was at first, without God his light goes out, and he is left in the dark ... a foolish suppression of truth. The SUPPRESSOR, says Paul in Romans 1:17ff., ignores the intractable evidence for the divine nature and power of God.
God is not unclear in His diagnosis, nor man in fulfilling it!
Is man to say, Just give me one intelligible datum from space, and voilà, there is intelligence abroad, beyond the earth! I know, I just know. True, I haven't found it yet, but billions I'll spend looking, billions you know.. and then add, But though there are BILLIONS of pieces of data in man, organised, integrated and the basis of his thought about thought, symbolically coded, systematically imploded, dextrously deployed, unitarily cohesive, singularly expressed into one expressive, executive being, yet for all that, NOT ONE maker will be considered, not one intelligence beyond the space of man. We WILL not believe; for man is all, and that is that. Give us billions, and we will not believe.
Such stupendous wit, such an odyssey of understanding from man roves the universe, and does not consider the books that are written, whether in his own life, to make it live on this earth, or in the Bible, intractable in the majesty of continuance unmoved! (Cf. Repent or Perish Ch. 7, esp. Part III).
We are willing, they say, for collaborators anywhere, but for Master nowhere. WE will be our own master - and how they will suffer who are so mastered by the … rulers of night. Watchman, asks the prophet, what of the night ? The night comes, said Christ, in which no man can work” (John 9:4).
The sheer monstrosity of this irrationality and wilful ignorance is made of the last 150 years a nightmare of greed, ungoverned aggression, evolutionary-minded superiorities, right down to shipping aboriginal remains in terms of backward oddities, and taking over territories by 'mandate' in the name of progress.
But progress to WHAT ? To atomic bombs with which to ruin the only humanly available environment fit for man, correlative to his construction ? Small wonder they look into the haunting majesty of ill-adapted space, like those murdering, and seeking refuge. To murder by millions, to proceed deliberately to the massacre of children, with philosophical fulminations from religions which have not evidence from God ? such is the greatness of godless man, inventing and tormenting in mutual thrust or bust obstructive determination.
So they would make laws to outlaw what is inlawed to God: from telling the Gospel ? in England they are pondering some of what still retains the word evangelicalism as enemy, and why ? Is it because it is unfitting for man to be told such things ? divine things ? to be subject of diagnosis, even by his Maker ?
If you offend someone's religious feelings, whatever your INTENTION, in Victoria, then prison may look longingly to your offending body, by virtue of law!
This is as it was to be, and now becoming. Indeed, with Europe pondering its past and talking of its future in terms of 'common destiny' while utterly sidestepping what in the world its meaning or past or aspiration might or could or should be, and drawing no coherent answer, since God by definition of man as master is to be excluded: there is more to come of this order.
That too is as it was to be, until financial transactions are monitored (stop the terrorist you know!, can't have a world with that sort of thing, what!), for the best of reasons, and speech is doctored for the worst of reasons, and the godless seek to make a world where truth can die and prosperity can live, to the glory of mankind, who is not kind: until the thing becomes an abomination of guile, contemptible cultural dictatorship and godless ambition, freaking into space and using it to doom others as well, if possible, at will.
But God is not mocked: one must understand this. It does not mean they do not try to mock Him, for this is as common as sand in Central Australia, and the pace is as hot. It means that though men try to mock Him, they end being mocked. Hosea has it: Sow the wind and reap the whirlwind, as Japan did after Pearl Harbour, in the form of Nagasaki and Hiroshima.
You see that in Proverbs 1. God in passionate compassion seeks for man to gain wisdom, but being rejected, indicates the perils of trying to do without it, as if you dispensed with the atmosphere in a freakish mood of self-assertive, thoughtless autonomy.
That is precisely what seeking to live without God does, and since God can intervene as He will, in mercy or judgment, without at all distorting the direction of flow of folly, for illustrative purposes, therefore judgments can aggravate the natural disasters which self-important man evokes by his own direct follies. This also is to come as you see in Revelation 6-8, with asteroids or some such heavenly or celestial bodies destined for disastrous impact on an earth which refusing to learn, is given more opportunity to reflect that man without God is a body without head, a lawless bandit without truth and a goon without glory.
It is not the intrinsic nature of man which does this; it is DESPITE IT. It is not natural to have a nature without a ground; and groundless, godless man walks about on air, which has only one result, falling... You want it put in more scholarly terms ? For you then: it is an irrational twist of truth to assert that order comes from its absence, something from nothing, correlation from lawlessness and meaning from the meaningless. To seek the most oblivious solution to the data is not science, but nonsense, not reason but the irrational. If you insist on so proceeding, then no words will assist the dissolution which awaits your confrontation with the realities through and in which you consist, and your demise as a being is hindered only by the excellence of your creation and the determinations of your Creator.
What, asks Jeremiah, is the chaff to the wheat ? Is a man then to make up what is right, because of his own construction and the perceptions it provides, the capacities for thought and reason, for contemplation and reflection, and then decide that what matters is working hard and being reasonable, and so bring himself into endless conflict with those who consider what matters is working hard and following the guru's words, or the philosopher's penchant, or the psychologist's analysis, or the lowest common denominator for comparative peace or whatever else, while Hitlers arise in the midst of the seething pot, like glazing-eyed lobsters turning red with the shame to man that this implies, and seek to direct the use of pots ?
Is this the brilliance of autonomous man, each autonomous philosophic-cultural-religious-irreligious outfit having a go, as they say, and in going, making much stay on this earth no longer, until Stalin and Hitler past, and Islamic totalitarianism present, we have another round of inane pretension, passion replacing scientific method in religion, force replacing faith and penchant truth: with cruelty the card that buys ? Did Japan and Germany, yes with Italy have it all worked out, so that their speed and guile would win the world ? The atomic bomb laughed. Then it laughed again as all sides becoming less and less alert to the word of God, and more and more keen on power politics, jointly inherited its threats.
They did it in Russia, using help from the Allies to gain a power so great that man was to be re-made into the ‘new man’; but it was altogether too old to be sold, and the novelty mocked man; and God was not mocked; and it fell (cf. Aviary of Idolatry, News 37, Divine Agenda Ch. 3, Of the Earth ... Ch. 2).
Government without God is a laugh. God mocks the mockery. He makes it clear that this is so in word and deed (Proverbs 1). But what on the positive side!
¨ He loves
(Micah 7:19ff., Ezekiel 33:11ff., John 3:16,
Colossians 1:19ff., I John 4:7ff.);
¨ He lives;
¨ He creates; He provides; He speaks:
¨ and attests it, shows mercy and invests it.
¨ He instructs, reproves, encourages;
¨ He foretells, warns and witnesses to the truth: He judges.
¨ His remedy provided, He seeks all, sends message and messenger alike (Matthew 24:14), and goes with His Gospel of good (Matthew 28:19-20).
¨ His remedy provided, He seeks all, completes all, and the curtain falls, something rather more profound than the first fall of man!
It begins, it ends, it is judged; and mercy has judgments of its own, through truth and love, in the ransom of redemption.
Is it possible that man has forgotten not only to worship God, but to think, bound in cultural bonds and seeking implicitly ANYTHING for enough peace with which to enjoy oneself and enough wealth to display oneself and find oneself in whatever it is that the world is, that life is, until it ends ? Naturally, some laugh at this, and play the Lord and become as gods, until they go, leaving the earth writhing by their passing.
Then autonomous man, born of woman, practising woes, knowing everything and understanding nothing, continues until the sheer power which the Creator has placed in this abounding and astounding universe becoming lethal by the knowledge which Daniel predicted would increase, makes mini-groups lords of terror. It allows the destructive to blackmail the constructive, while man scratches his head and determines what must be.
And that ? It is of course, given the godlessness of the religious mouthings which are mere philosophies in disguise, or else the work of lying spirits as the Bible indicates, a matter of proceeding with lying wonders (cf. I Kings 22:22ff., cf. Revelation 16:13): to make a world under one authority which will CONTROL IT. ONE world with ONE force, one RULE and one APPROACH, lest ANY puncture its equilibrium, in view of the vulnerability to much power on a limited globe. That is what comes, is predicted, forms and arrays itself now as in Europe, where it is predicted to have its lair and habitat (cf. The Pitter-Patter of Prophetic Feet Ch. 1).
Like a class of wayward children, they are sent to a 'special school' and there they learn by pain and prison, by hopeful words and possible realisations, what is the lie of the land, and whatever they lie, they seek to land something better; for it cannot in all conscience be worse. Such is wisdom for ducks; although it must be said, they seem considerably wiser than that.
The special school, as in part with Hitler and Stalin, Mao and the other mini-models like Idi-Amin, becomes at last an INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL FOR THE BLIND, and in this you are shown sensing equipment which, though it does not reveal actuality, will make you move in acceptable ways or not stay alive. These rules, conventions and inventions of imaginative man without God, thus become godless guesswork, with the truth removed by authority. This is the destiny for man; but the delightful news for the time remains on its millenial offer, and as you see even in prophecies such as those of Micah, Jeremiah and Isaiah, is the Messiah.
It always was from the proto-evangelion of Genesis 3:15, and it always will be, while opportunity remains (Acts 4:11-12, Galatians, News 87, Barbs, Arrows and Balms 17, TMR Ch. 3); for this alone is rationally attested to scientific method, metaphysics and to epistemology (cf. Chs. 1-2, above, TMR Chs. 6-7, SMR Chs. 3,10), and this alone is offered to faith (Hebrews 11:1ff., Romans 3:23ff., 5:1ff.).
It is not that He made the Messiah, since He is One whose "goings are from everlasting" (Micah 5:12-3), but that He made the plan in which God the sender and God the sent (as in Isaiah 48:16), with the Spirit of Him who both sends and is sent, the Trinity, works out a salvation for man, and finding death for Himself in human form, dismisses for man, but not for mankind, the ignominy of sin added to pride, and gives to one and to all the road to a peace which is not based on blind control, but love in truth. Redemption is the name of it, remedy is its status, the Redeemer is the performer and the Cross was the method. Guilt is its evacuee, and government is its gift (Romans 5:17, Isaiah 9:7), first self-government with Christ in you, the hope of glory (Colossians 1:27, Romans 5-8), and then world government (Psalm 2, Isaiah 11), until this time being past, and this world dismissed, the divine task force becomes site for the effulgence of the glorious God (Revelation 22:1ff.); and those who have received Him, HE RECEIVES.
THIS IS THE WAY of the godly, who have come to terms with His terms.
But as for the ungodly, who choose gods and make them, ignore the testimony of truth of these millenia and roll their own gurus, for those who favour false prophets, they populate the world, long used in the preceding century to trying to ignore real religious life in the only God who has ever evidenced Himself to reason*1 in terms of scientific method, validity and confirmed promises; and it is harassed. Indeed, it explodes with vehement violence in the name of what man has invented, and those who ignore it all, are powerless, saying, It is their culture! or other ignominious capitulations to frank evil and rank folly which speaks for itself, and has the bad breath of rotting bodies of children, to which is added the sour smell of young lives battered into agonies which persist.
It could not be otherwise. There is no history, but only post-history for man without God. It is not post-Christianity but post-world, because of God, whose message varies not one jot in its joy, nor one millimetre in its prescriptions, predictions and millenial principles.
There is no peace for the wicked which thrust about like the troubled sea (Isaiah 57:19-21). It could not be otherwise: it is as clear as if one should strip the skin from one's arms, and be surprised that it was not convenient. It is not made for that.
Man tries and will be most trying in his trials as he takes on God for control of a world he did not make, and that by equipment in his very person which he did not make; and this lust as from the very first, when man would like to be as gods (Genesis 3), up there with it all: it becomes his last lust. Since God is just, when mercy is disdained, truth rules and lust is left as forlorn as rose petals in hot Summer, thrown out from the too stale vase.
Roses are nice; petals can be beautiful IN COMPOSITION and properly placed amid the ordained perfumes which bedecks the fragility and the aesthetic unity of the bloom. It is grievous indeed to see such potential for true loveliness in the proper place, disjoined from design, disdaining its Maker, unmade as rubbish.
It is not necessary. If the petals prefer their own assertion, so be it. God has done all for the rose that is man, and man has arisen and is no rose; and refusing rescue, he becomes as chaff, to turn the aesthetic into the nutritious. And what, in beauty or use, is chaff to the wheat!
If of course you are not hungry, you might like to watch the arrangements of chaff-particles in the atmosphere, as it is blown about, and even write a Ph.D. thesis on it, while world rule comes in, and tells you what is permissible to say, and what is not.
Truth is free, and what fractures it is lost already.
See for example such sites as:
SMR Chs. 1-3,10, Heart and Soul...
Ch. 8, Repent or Perish ... Chs.
2, 7, Christ the Wisdom
and the Power of God Ch. 8, Lord of Life
TMR Chs. 5 - 6. Barbs, Arrows and Balms 6 -7, Chs. 1-2 above.