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The heart of a beast

Nov 02, 2018

In Daniel 4:25 and 32 we read a prophecy that the king of Babylon would dwell with “the beasts of the field” and “given grass to eat.” In other words, he would identify with “beasts” for a period of “seven times.”

What does this signify?

Both Daniel and Revelation refer to the world empires as beasts. Babylon was like a lion (Daniel 7:4). Persia was like a bear (Daniel 7:5). Greece was like a leopard (Daniel 7:6). Rome was also a beast, but it did not resemble any known animal on earth (Daniel 7:7). The “little horn” arising out of the Roman beast was not specifically compared to a beast, but yet it was an extension of the Roman beast (Daniel 7:8).

Although each beast had different characteristics, they all had the heart of a beast and therefore had something in common. They all were beasts of prey. In other words, they saw men and nations as prey, rather than as people in need of a Jubilee. Nebuchadnezzar himself was supposed to eat grass (Daniel 4:25), and we are told that “all flesh is grass” (Isaiah 40:6; 1 Peter 1:24). In other words, a beast is one who consumes men and nations as prey.

The Seed of Abraham

The contrast, of course, is seen in the children of Abraham, who, by following their father’s example of faith, are a blessing to all families of the earth (Genesis 12:3). As the revelation of Scripture unfolds, we see that this means the children of (New Covenant) faith seek to set the nations free from bondage, beginning with the bondage of their own sinful flesh. As men are set free from the root of sin, then societies as a whole may be changed until all of creation is set free from its “slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God” (Romans 8:21).

No law is more revealing of this purpose than the law of Jubilee, which is the law of grace. The primary motive of the overcomers, the true seed of Abraham, is expressed by the law of Jubilee. The seed of Abraham are those who imitate Father Abraham, those who have faith in Jesus Christ. In other words, like Abraham, their faith is in the promise of God, not in their own promises or in the promises of any man. Romans 4:21, 22 says it best:

21 and being fully assured that what He had promised, He was able also to perform. 22 Therefore also it was reckoned to him as righteousness.

Only by understanding the nature of the New Covenant can we truly have the kind of faith that is required to be of the seed of Abraham. (See my book, The Two Covenants.) Anything short of that still shows some mixture with the heart of a beast.

The nation of Judah held the dominion mandate (Genesis 49:10), which had been passed down from Adam since God first instituted authority in the earth in Genesis 1:26. That authority was to be used to implement the fruitfulness mandate in Genesis 1:28. However, Judah failed to use its authority properly, because the people failed to comprehend the nature of the Abrahamic blessing. They thought God had given them the right to rule all nations for their own benefit—essentially, seeing other nations as prey, rather than as their responsibility to bless. They had the heart of a beast, not the heart of Abraham. Hence, they were not the seed of Abraham, regardless of any genealogical claim. Many are called, but few are chosen (Matthew 22:14).

For this reason, God judged Judah by placing them under the authority of other beast nations, beginning with Babylon. The judgment fit the crime, as the law demands. But because they did not understand the law, they failed to recognize the lesson that the divine judgment was teaching them. Hence, they chafed under the rule of the beasts, blaming God and blaming their beast masters, rather than praising God for showing them the condition of their own heart.

The Darwinian View of Man as a Beast

In the mid-nineteenth century, Charles Darwin proposed that man was just an animal, differing only by a greater intelligence. This proposal was combined with Marxist atheism to promote the idea of Socialism, which now pervades all nations. Socialism is the secular way to promote “love” through theft—the Robin Hood principle. But the rulers of the beast systems always ensure that they themselves are not robbed along with the common people. At least Robin Hood robbed only the rich.

Socialism claims to rob (tax) the rich at the highest rates, but in fact, they rob the middle class in order to create a huge wealth gap between the rich and the poor. The super-rich use tax-free foundations and overseas tax havens to protect themselves from most taxation. Most still pay some tax, but the rate is far lower than the tax rates paid by the middle class.

Darwin’s idea that men are beasts gave the world a new self-image that justified power and force as the only real human values in the earth. The elimination of God as the Creator left a moral and spiritual vacuum that could only be filled by powerful men. Might makes right, they say, which is the law of the jungle, the law of tooth and claw. There is no real basis of morality or a love-based society. Morality has been replaced by the survival of the fittest (i.e., the most powerful).

Since Darwin, we have seen a steady decline in both morality and freedom. These have been replaced by illusions of morality and freedom, based on what feels good and self-interest. The result is amorality (sexual “freedom”) by which men are enslaved by their own flesh and by the political systems that promote such illusions of freedom.

Biblical Foundations

The Bible reveals that God is the Creator and has the right to determine creation’s use and purpose. Though God is Power, He is also Love and Wisdom. The law of tooth and claw is not a reflection of God’s character, nor is it His purpose for men to live like that.

Instead, we were created in His image so that we would reflect who He is, not who beasts are. God put man here to subdue the earth and to shape that which He had created, so that the earth itself would become a virtuous paradise. In that sense, man was a missionary to the chaotic jungle. But when man fell into sin, the chaotic jungle became a missionary to mankind and converted men to its law of tooth and claw.

Later, when Israel conquered Canaan, God deliberately left many Canaanites in the land to test the hearts of the Israelites to see if they would be influenced by the idolaters or if the Israelites would be a positive influence upon the Canaanites (Judges 3:1, 3, 4). On a deeper level, God left Canaanites in the land to give Israel the opportunity to be a blessing to all families of the earth, as the Abrahamic covenant mandated.

But most of the people retained an Old Covenant mindset. The physical sword was their weapon of choice, rather than the sword of the Spirit which they had rejected at Mount Horeb when they refused to hear the voice of God (Exodus 20:18-21).

Believers are meant to bring order out of chaos and to subdue the earth by the Love-nature of God through the power of His Word. But this cannot be done apart from a change of heart on the deepest level. Without that change of heart, even believers are influenced by the chaotic, sinful world, and they adapt to the ways of the world.

The overcomers understand the ways of the world because of direct experience in life, but they rise above the world in order to raise it up above the chaos and darkness that springs from the Darwinian beast-view. Overcomers show the path toward a transformation from a beast to a son of God.

Most people want peace and liberty, but few know how to get it. Religions have sprung up with their own views about how to achieve such lofty goals. But their solutions are always flawed, mostly because they want to achieve their goals at the expense of others. They seek peace through war. They seek liberty by enslaving others. Paradise, for them, is achieved when those not of our class or religion are content to be our slaves forever.

Hence, the Jewish Talmud says, “When the Messiah comes, every Jew will have 2800 slaves” (Simeon Haddarsen, fol. 56-D). How then can creation be set free from slavery?

Likewise, Islam rewards its martyrs and righteous men with 70 virgins, especially if they kill enough infidels. What reward do those virgins have, except to serve at the pleasure of men for eternity? And how are those "infidels" set free?

There are many warped forms of Christianity as well, which would have God burn and torture men for eternity for not serving as slaves to the leaders of the church denomination.

All of these religious viewpoints are part of a beast mindset that is selfish and limits the blessings of God to the few. Such views prevent men from having the faith of Abraham and from being a blessing to all nations.

In view of the deepening darkness in the world today, let us pray for an outpouring of the Spirit that God has promised, so that His light may shine and that the Kingdom of Light may push back the outer darkness and ultimately eliminate it altogether.

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Category: Teachings
Blog Author: Dr. Stephen Jones