The Law of the Census and Poll Tax--Part 3
Jan 13, 2009
Moses gave the basic laws; the prophets gave some Supreme Court rulings where Moses was incomplete or silent, and the biblical history books teach us the applications of the law on a national scale.
David's census is one of those real-life applications of the law of the census. The half-shekel requirement was not because God needed money, but because its payment recognized God as the Creator and Owner of all men. A half-shekel was only a day's wage, but this token was a recognition that man was subordinate to God, and as such it was important.
It is a bit like a parent asking the child to make his bed. It is not a whole lot to ask, but if the child refuses, it is a more serious matter. It is not serious because mama has to give up another minute of time to make the bed. It is serious because it is a sign of rebellion in the child. If it is not dealt with, the child will likely grow up to rebel against all society and will pose a problem for the courts and for law-enforcement officials. Little sins grow up to be big sins, if fed enough rebellion-burgers.
In Israel's case, God brought judgment upon the nation many times between the days of Joshua and David. Those judgments were for different reasons and for different acts of rebellion. In the case of David's census, the story of judgment revealed a heart condition of rebellion in Israel. The people thought that they owned themselves and their land inheritance.
In the sovereignty of God, David was blinded either by ignorance of the law of the census or in some other way in order that God might find legal cause to foreclose upon their 70-year "debt" to the land-rest laws. By the scriptural account, we know that this occurred toward the end of David's reign, because it is virtually the last major event of his life before he died. By looking at the chronology with a knowledge of timing, we can see that it occurred in the 38th year of his reign, because that was the year in which their time-debt reached 70 years. They had never kept their land rests or their Jubilees.
Also after that, we find that Israel's problem continued into the days of Solomon and the other kings of Judah, because their time debt had reached another 70 years by the time of the Babylonian captivity of Jerusalem. Hence, they spent 70 years in Babylon to pay off this time debt. We are told this in 2 Chron. 36:21,
"To fulfill the word of the Lord by the mouth of Jeremiah, until the land had enjoyed its Sabbaths. All the days of its desolation it kept Sabbath until seventy years were complete."
For details of this, see Secrets of Time, chapter 7.
Getting back to David's census, we find that his repentance involved the purchase of the threshing floor of Arunah (or Ornan) on which to make a sacrifice. According to 2 Sam. 24:24, he bought it for 50 shekels of silver. According to the other account in 1 Chron. 21:25, he bought it for 600 shekels of gold.
What actually happened is that he gave Ornan a downpayment of 50 shekels of silver and then later paid off the debt with 600 shekels of gold. The significance of this is striking, because it reminds us of the fact that Pentecost ("50th day") gave us the earnest of the Spirit--that is the downpayment (2 Cor. 1:22; 5:5; Eph. 1:14). This is to be followed by the fulfillment of the feast of Tabernacles, wherein we receive the full purchase price in the redemption of our body. It will be purchased by the fullness of the Spirit, which Paul prayed for in Eph. 3:19.
The number 600 is the numeric value of cosmos in Greek. Cosmos means "the world." So there is another dimension to this contrast between 50 and 600. It suggests that the downpayment was small in scope, but that the fullness of the Spirit is world-wide. That is, there is an expansion of the Kingdom of God to cover the whole earth, as Daniel 2:35 prophesied.
Likewise, the metals themselves speak prophetically. Silver is the metal of redemption; gold signifies the divine nature. There is a two-step process in the salvation of God. The first step is redemption through the first set of feast days in the Spring. The second step is where we come into the divine nature through the second set of feast days in September-October.
In the next chapter (1 Chron. 22) we find David making preparations to build a temple on the site that he had purchased from Ornan. God prevented him from doing so, however, telling him to leave this job for his son, Solomon. But David made all the preparations, drew up the plans, and gathered all the building materials needed for the temple.
In 1 Chron. 22: 7-19, David told Solomon about the revelation he had received. In part, it reads,
" (7) And David said to Solomon, 'My son, I had intended to build a house to the name of the Lord my God. (8) But the word of the Lord came to me, saying, You have shed much blood, and have waged great wars; you shall not build a house to My name, because you have shed so much blood on the earth before Me. (9) Behold, a son shall be born to you, who shall be A MAN OF REST; and I will give him rest from all his enemies on every side; for his name shall be Solomon, and I will give peace and quiet to Israel in his days'."
This sets forth the will of God that the True Temple cannot be built by men of war--even true believers. The work of the Temple is a REST-WORK. As I have shown previously, the Levites, who represented the First-Born "sons of God," were supposed to "war the warfare" in the tabernacle/temple. This was spiritual warfare, not physical warfare. The Levites were not to fight in physical wars. They were to win the battle in the heavens before the physical battle ever took place.
The True Temple has always been with us, because it is composed of Living Stones (people). Yet prophetically speaking, there comes a time for its manifestation on earth. That time is now. On March 15, 2006 we came to the 2,520th anniversary of the completion of the Second Temple in the days of Zerubbabel. All of the major events in modern history revolve around this 2,520-year time cycle, beginning in 1776 and again in 1800. See my book, The Prophetic History of the United States.
In 2006 I postulated that the physical work of the "temple" itself had been completed, but that we then entered into the time of constructing the VESSELS of the temple. I speculated that this would be a 3-1/2 year period, ending in September of 2009. The feast of trumpets is Sept. 19, 2009.
The picture is beginning to clarify further, if we overlay upon this the revelation of the "birth of John/Elijah" and the coming Elijah Ministry. James 5:17 speaks of 3-1/2 years of the Elijah Ministry. Putting these two ideas together may indicate a complete 7-year period of preparation for what comes after.
America took its last census in the year 2000. It was the last census before the full transfer of authority from Saul to David occurred on Nov. 30, 2000. So the next census in the year 2010 will be done while under the divine authority of the overcomers, who have established the standard of the divine law. That means America will be held liable for non-compliance, and God will bring pressure and judgment until she repents and conforms to the laws of the Kingdom of God.
The year 2010 is the end of 7 x 390 years from the fall of Samaria in 721 B.C. It is also 13 x 210 years from the same date. I explained these cycles in web logs dated 7/28/08, "A New Revelation."
It appears to me that the law of census may bite America in the rear in 2010. But God will again spare His children who look to Him and are obedient.
This is the final part of a series titled "The Law of the Census and Poll Tax." To view all parts, click the link below.
Dr. Stephen Jones