It is relevant to me that the above events occurred immediately after a period of some personal stress for me. The head gasket on my venerable old but much-loved automobile blew several weeks previously. Now while, in the grand scheme of things, this is really nothing more than a mild irritant, for someone of my years this did prove to be a stressful time. I had to call out the recovery service; get the car taken into the local dealer for repair; get a quote for the repair; negotiate a better price for the repair; arrange a hire car for the three week period that the car was off the road; negotiate a contribution for the hire car with the dealer; test drive a new car in case the repair quote proved uneconomic; negotiate the best price for the new car; make the decision in favour of getting the repair done; completely reorganise my busy schedule while much of this was going on etc. etc. I'm getting exhausted just writing the list out!
So as you can tell I was not in the best of spirits to start with to deal with the altercation described above. I do not believe in coincidences. God's plan was clearly to test me when my defences were at their weakest and that test was provided for my benefit not God's. I believe the Holy Spirit was showing me that, whilst I am not a completely bad person, there is clearly room for some improvement particularly in the area of how I respond to deliberate personal injury. All spiritual beings come under periods of stress. It is how we respond to that stress that is important. One needs to look at how Christ responded to the stress that he came under prior to His ultimate test:
41 And He was withdrawn from them, about a stone's throw. And having placed the knees, He prayed,
42 saying, Father, if You purpose [it], take away this cup from Me; but let not be My will, but Yours.
43 And an angel from Heaven appeared to Him, strengthening Him.
44 And being in an agony, He prayed more intently. And His sweat became as drops of blood falling down onto the earth.
45 And rising up from the prayer, coming to His disciples, He found them sleeping from grief.
46 And [He] said to them, Why do you sleep? Rising up, pray that you do not enter into temptation. (Luke 22)
Despite the terrible ordeal He knew He was due to face His first thought, after prayng to His Father, was to look after the spiritual well-being of His followers. Oh, if only I could have reacted in the same way; but then I am not the archangel Michael!
A short while after these apparently negative events in my life, another sequence of circumstances hit me, again I am certain these were no accidents (you'll see the irony of that comment in a moment). Without too much boring detail, suffice it to say that I found myself one day without any cash on me. The consequence of this irritating discovery caused me to necessarily completely change my plans for the rest of the day. One element of this re-plan was to park my (now perfectly operational) automobile in a local supermarket car park. When I returned to my vehicle some fifteen or so minutes later what do I find? Some young lady had backed into my car causing some, admittedly minor, paint damage to the front bumper.
But here's the thing; how did I react to this further test on my patience while I was still smarting from the previous episodes? Instead of throwing up my hands in horror and throwing a wobbly, which is exactly what I think she expected, I thanked her for her honesty in staying by the car and not driving off as most people might well have done. Whilst this did involve my running around to get a repair estimate again, I did this in good spirit this time because after my recent experience of mankind I was clearly being reminded that, after all, whilst fifty percent of mankind will not be saved into the Kingdom, I had lost sight of the fifty percent who will. I pray that I meet that young lady again soon, next time in the Kingdom; she has restored my failing faith in mankind:
11 Beloved, do not imitate the bad, but the good. The [one] doing good is of God; but the [one] doing bad has not seen God. (3 John 1)
Again, interestingly, I watched another film recently which seems to have also been selected on a timely basis, but again probably not by me! I refer to 'The Adjustment Bureau'. Clearly 'The Plan' called for me to have no cash on me that day. I have never walked out of the house without cash when I know I would have needed it to meet my plan for the day. Why did that happen on that particular day and why did I rearrange my day in the exact way that I did? I believe that my plan needed to come into line with 'The Plan' and that an officer of the 'Bureau', aka Holy Spirit, has me very much in his sights at the moment!
But wait, we are not finished yet on this plan change. On hearing the news about my decision tree, my good lady wife informed me, the following day, about this incident: http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/staines-school-bus-crash-live-5411395. Amazingly this incident not only occurred just off the route I was due to take, had my plan remained unchanged, but also less than one hour before I was due to set off on that route from my then previous location. Result of the plan changes: not only was my faith in mankind restored but I was also prevented from getting stuck in an almighty resultant traffic jam that would have wasted anything up to two hours of my time sitting in a stationary car, twiddling my thumbs, whereby I also would not have made it to my cash-requiring destination in time anyway!!!
Is this the final part of the lesson from the Holy Spirit before the second fire sign or is there yet more to follow? I do not know, but you can be sure I will write of it on this web-page should this turn into a continuing saga for my pre-Kingdom training.
As a prospective 2nd New Covenant King, it must be clearly incumbent upon me and my brothers and sisters in the Fourth True Christian Church to be on our guard at all times against those ones of bad heart towards their fellow men. In that respect there is clearly a similar challenge for the 2NC Kings as there was for the 1NC Saints:
16 Behold, I send you out as sheep in [the] midst of wolves. Therefore, be wise as serpents and harmless as doves.
17 But beware of men. For they will betray you to sanhedrins, and they will flog you in their synagogues.
18 And also you will be brought before governors and kings for My sake, for a testimony to them and to the nations.
19 But when they deliver you up, do not be anxious how or what you should say, for it is given to you in that hour what you should say. (Matthew 10)
In describing us as sheep in the midst of wolves we must continue in our ways of peace and not wish harm to our fellow men. I, as one mere mortal man, albeit a prospective 2NC King, must admit to finding this difficult particularly under trying circumstances when faced with much unjust behaviour from the wolves in society who would gladly do us harm to gain their own ungodly ends. In this regards I found myself, in my own anger, recalling that vengeance is the Lord’s. That thought came with that ‘shivering’ sensation that I always feel when I am being touched by the Holy Spirit. One must remain mindful that it is the Lord that judges us all so we should remember that the sheep’s behaviour is also under the same scrutiny as the wolves. A hard lesson, but one that I am privileged to be being taught at this time:
17 returning evil for evil to no one; providing right things before all men.
18 If possible, from you being in peace with all men;
19 not avenging yourselves, beloved, but giving place to wrath, for it has been written, "Vengeance [is] Mine," "I will repay," says [the] Lord.
20 Then "if [one] hostile [to] you hungers, feed him; if he thirsts, give him drink; for doing this you will heap coals of fire on his head."
21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome the evil with good. (Romans 12)
Clearly the harmlessness of doves portrays that desired behaviour from us but what of the wisdom of serpents? Whilst appearing mild-mannered and innocent we must not be oblivious to the evil intent of those wolves. Snakes are not aggressive creatures generally by nature and will look to escape from danger. It is the recognition of danger that we must be alert to, not trusting in the words of our enemies whose king Satan created the lie:
1 And the serpent was cunning above every animal of the field which Jehovah God had made. And he said to the woman, [Is it] true that God has said, You shall not eat from any tree of the garden?
2 And the woman said to the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden,
3 but of the fruit of the tree in the middle of the garden, God has said, You shall not eat of it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.
4 And the serpent said to the woman, Dying you shall not die,
5 for God knows that in the day you eat of it, even your eyes shall be opened, and you shall be as God, knowing good and evil. (Genesis 3)
Firstly I find it interesting that Satan is portrayed as the serpent due to his cunning nature. So it would seem that we are called upon to exhibit at least one of Satan’s qualities: that of getting what we want albeit without recourse to the lie or doing physical harm to our adversaries. But here we also need to see Eve’s innocence when confronted by the serpent. If she had been able to match the serpent’s wisdom she would have been able to see the lie and avoid the danger by believing God’s word before that of the serpent:
13 And Jehovah God said to the woman, What [is] this you have done? And the woman said, The serpent deceived me, and I ate. (Genesis 3)
13 For Adam was formed first, then Eve.
14 And Adam was not deceived, but [the] woman being deceived has come to be in transgression; (1 Timothy 2)
The State of Mankind Today
The world news has been pretty appalling on all fronts for quite some time now. But then Christian believers will not be at all surprised by these events of war, uprisings, environmental disasters and pestilences:
9 And when you hear of wars and disturbances, do not be afraid. For these things must first occur, but the end [is] not at once.
10 Then He said to them, Nation will be lifted up against nation, and kingdom against kingdom.
11 Also there will be great earthquakes from place to place, and famines, and plagues. And also there will be terrors and great signs from Heaven. (Luke 21)
To any right-thinking person the world is becoming a more and more evil place to live increasingly on an almost day-by-day basis. And here am I living the life of Reilly in relative comfort and safety in Dear Old Blighty. Not oblivious to world events but seemingly far-removed from them. Well maybe not. So what has lead me to start writing this particular piece at this precise juncture in world history? It would seem that some appalling events have occurred rather closer to home than usual. Whilst the UK has not been without its share of bad news stories over the years, the coincidence of two unbelievably evil acts of individual human cruelty have hit the headlines in a seemingly synchronised manner over the last week or two.
In one story a woman and her lesbian lover abused and eventually murdered her eight year old daughter: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-31730542. In the other tale of horror, a sixteen year old girl was likely murdered by her step-brother with the apparently able-bodied assistance of four other satanic beings to dispose of her several body parts: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-31765767! And these are not the only such events being investigated as I write. What is going on guys?
As far as the Lords Witnesses' understandings go, at the time of writing, we have been in the phase prior to Armageddon when the demons come back down to possess the powerful (and other key individuals) since 2013Heshvan15 according to the Biblical Lunar Calendar (or 22nd October 2013 Gregorian) to take us through the final phases of man's existence on this earth. This is despite the fact that we have not yet seen the signs of the 1st New Covenant Saints arrival to protect and save the better half of the human race from the final stages. For more on this chronology please visit: Satan, his dragon and his angels, lost their heavenly war, described in Revelation 12:7, to Michael and his angels in 2012Heshvan
Doves and Serpents
Jewish Lords' Witness
Images provided by www.BiblePictureGallery.com.
Preparation For A Clean Sweep
I would have to say that I think the lot of the 2NC Kings will be rather less painful than that of the 1NC Saints. For a start the 1NC Saints will be back down here with the power of the Holy Spirit (they are Jesus’ Holy Spirit after all!) protecting us from the worst excesses of the demons and evil mankind. Our main job will be to collect up the good-hearted half of mankind to be saved into God’s Kingdom while the evil-doers destroy each other on this planet:
38 But the transgressors are destroyed together; the end of the wicked is cut off.
39 But the salvation of the righteous [is] from Jehovah; [He is] their strength in the time of distress.
40 And Jehovah helps them and delivers them; He shall deliver them from the wicked and saves them, because they trust in Him. (Psalms 37)
41 The Son of Man will send forth His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all the offenses, and those who practice lawlessness.
42 And they will throw them into the furnace of fire; there will be weeping and gnashing of the teeth.
43 Then the righteous will shine out like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. The [one] having ears to hear, let him hear. (Matthew 13)
My shock at the change in behaviour in the man I have previously described would have been no surprise to the angels. As yet I do not have the ability to read men’s hearts, only their physically tangible actions and behaviour. Whether the 2NC Kings will have that ability in the remaining time of the end I do not know for certain but perhaps that ability will be reserved for the Holy Spirit in order to protect the 2NC Kings and their followers through the troubled times ahead going into the Kingdom:
12 For the Word of God [is] living, and powerfully working, and sharper than every two-edged sword, and piercing as far as [the] division of both soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge of the thoughts and intentions of the heart;
13 and there is no creature unrevealed before Him; but all things [are] naked and laid open to His eyes, with whom [is] our account. (Hebrews 4)
I find myself wondering why, at this particular time, have these lessons been visited upon me. As those of you who follow the True Bible Code web-site will know, the Lords Witnesses have been trying to predict the precise time of the end for several years now. This with, admittedly, no success in correctly predicting the date of the second and third fire signs at the time of writing this paper. However, it should be noted that no other church has anything like the level of knowledge that the Fourth True Christian church now has in interpreting the numerical data contained in scripture: http://www.truebiblecode.com/understanding271aq.html. I find myself wondering if I am being taught the harsh lessons of surviving the end times because they are now so very close lest I should otherwise forget them. I for one sincerely hope so. The older I have become the more despairing have I become of the mess that man is making of his existence both at an individual and a planetary level. Moral sustainability has never been further removed from our way of life than it is today.
My Eyes Opened Wide
This has been brought into sharp focus for me personally in witnessing some so called human (potentially demonic?) behaviour at first hand. We all have disagreements with our fellow beings from time to time and there is nothing innately wrong with that in itself. It is the manner of how such disagreements are created and resolved that is important. In debating the dispute in question I found myself facing an unbelievably aggressive response from someone who had previously behaved over a period of time as a perfectly affable and even likeable character. When I brought the matter at hand to his door his manner changed in an instant into someone who would countenance no questioning of his clearly unthoughtful actions. His tactics were those of the classic classroom bully and therefore totally demonic in character. The scales fell from my eyes albeit in the opposite sense that they did for Saul:
17 And Ananias went away and entered into the house. And putting hands on him [he] said, Brother Saul, the Lord has sent me, Jesus, the One who appeared to you in the highway on which you came, that you may see and be filled of [the] Holy Spirit.
18 And instantly it was as if scales fell away from his eyes. And rising up at the thing [happening, he] was baptized. (Acts 9)
In these scriptural verses it is clear that Saul’s earthly view of life was to change dramatically in an instant to having his eyes opened as Paul as he became engulfed by the Holy Spirit. Whilst on a much less magnificent stage, I would like to think that my relatively minor experience was intended by the Holy Spirit to fully open my eyes to the evil in men’s hearts. Actually my experience was probably rather more akin to Adam and Eve having their eyes opened to good and evil although hopefully this was not caused by my own deliberate disobeying of any of God’s laws:
4 And the serpent said to the woman, Dying you shall not die,
5 for God knows that in the day you eat of it, even your eyes shall be opened, and you shall be as God, knowing good and evil.
6 And the woman saw that the tree [was] good for food, and that it [was] pleasant to the eyes, and the tree [was] desirable to make [one] wise. And she took of its fruit and ate; and she also gave to her husband with her, and he ate.
7 And the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they [were] naked. And they sewed leaves of the fig tree, and made girdles for themselves. (Genesis 3)
22 And Jehovah God said, Behold! The man has become as one of Us, to know good and evil. And now, lest he put forth his hand and also take from the Tree of Life, and eat, and live forever,
23 Jehovah God sent him out of the garden of Eden to till the ground out of which he was taken. (Genesis 3)
I think the key verse in Genesis 3 in my case is in God’s questioning of Adam:
11 And He said, Who told you that you [were] naked? Have you eaten of the tree of which I commanded you not to eat? (Genesis 3)
Clearly it was one of Satan’s human agents telling me how naively naked that I was albeit under the control of my guardian angel in the Holy Spirit so no breakage was attributable to me I think! I believe that I was being told of my nakedness in recognising evil for my own future protection, thank the Lord.
I welcome the destruction of the old and the bringing in of the new. I just hope I have listened well enough to my heavenly mentors to survive the carnage that is to come so that I can take my place as a 2NC King in the Kingdom to come:
13 Brothers, I do not count myself to have laid hold, but one [thing I do], forgetting the things behind, and stretching forward to those things before, (Philippians 3)
Perhaps my recent negative experiences of mankind have truly been a test for me to ensure that my faith in God will surpass my disdain of mankind to enable me to take my place in God’s plan. A final honing perhaps of the qualities that God will need from me in the difficult but enlightening times just ahead of us all:
5 [the ones] in [the] power of God being guarded through faith to a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time;
6 in which you exult; yet a little [while], if need be, grieving in manifold trials,
7 so that the proving of your faith, much more precious than perishing gold, but having been proved through fire, may be found to praise and honor and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ; (1 Peter 1)
My earlier paper on the trials and tribulations of Job has much more to say on this for the interested reader: The Trials of Job. But for me the hardest lesson of all to learn is covered well in Matthew’s gospel:
43 You have heard that it was said, "You shall love your neighbor" and hate your enemy;
44 but I say to you, Love your enemies; bless those cursing you, do well to those hating you; and pray for those abusing and persecuting you,
45 so that you may become sons of your Father in Heaven. Because He causes the sun to rise on [the] evil and [the] good, and sends rain on the just and unjust.
46 For if you love those loving you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax-collectors do the same?
47 And if you only greet your brothers, what exceptional [thing] do you do? Do not the tax-collectors do so? (Matthew 5)
I am well aware of my imperfections in the above matter. Once again in a very timely (and I am sure planned) way I recently found myself watching the full length feature film of Dumas’ ‘Count of Monte Cristo’. Despite the fame of this classic tale I was not previously aware of the storyline. For those of you not in the know it is the archetypal tale of unjust persecution and revenge. I totally sympathised with the vengeful plotting by the hero of the story in exacting his revenge upon his persecutors. In that same way I am finding my forgiveness of my ‘neighbour’s’ behaviour extremely difficult. There is no doubt that all this was brought to bear on me at this time for good reason. God clearly knows me better than I know myself! I pray that I may find this in me by the grace of God before His judgement comes upon us all. But at least I am aware of my failings and am trying to fix them with God’s patient tutelage. Being willing to learn God’s sometimes difficult lessons is the first great step towards true salvation. My earlier paper ‘Heroes and Villains’ has much to say on this topic for the interested reader: Heroes and Villains.
Ultimately if one can genuinely love one’s enemies this will end up putting further judgement on them if they do not desist from their persecution of you and will further vindicate you in God’s eyes. In the end we must never lose sight of the scripture from Romans 12 previously quoted. God is the perfect judge; we imperfect mortals must be careful not to judge others, no matter how unjustly we feel they may have acted towards us, lest God judges us as sinful in attempting to usurp His own powers. Amen.
All scriptural quotations in this paper are taken from Jay Green’s Literal Translation.