From Chaos to Cosmos, Part 5
Issue No. 368
Freedom can lead either to chaos or cosmos (order). It depends on whether freedom springs from God or man, that is, from the laws of God or the traditions of men.
Men have always promised freedom to the people in order to garner their support and loyalty, but such freedom has inevitably been short-lived or downright non-existent. Only God’s plan of freedom brings genuine freedom, and this is set forth in the divine law. Hence, the psalmist tells us in that great law-chapter, Psalm 119:44, 45,
44 So I will keep Thy law continually, forever and ever, 45 and I will walk at liberty, for I seek Thy precepts.
The ultimate law of liberty is the law of Jubilee, for we read in Lev. 25:10 KJV,
10 And ye shall hallow the fiftieth year and proclaim liberty throughout all the land unto all the inhabitants thereof….
This liberty was not limited to biological Israelites but included “all the inhabitants thereof.” The law of Jubilee limited slavery by canceling debts every 49 years, or 7 Sabbath years.
Jesus’ Anti-Slavery Movement
Jesus’ main mission, as He Himself proclaimed at the start of His earthly ministry, was to fulfill Isaiah 61:1, 2, “to proclaim liberty to the captives.”
Hence, it is no surprise that slavery began to be abhorred when the Bible was opened to the common people and when it was explained by the Protestant Reformers. By the time the American Republic was declared in 1776, those who were most influenced by the Bible were at the forefront of the anti-slavery movements.
While Roman Catholics and their Anglican cousins continued to justify slavery, those who read the Scriptures for themselves saw how God’s stated goal was to release the people from all forms of slavery. This was possible only through “the law of liberty” (James 2:12). This was not a law separate from the Mosaic law. It was a proper under-standing of the Mosaic law, the prophets, and all of the inspired Scriptures.
True Freedom Revealed in the Law
True freedom is not the freedom to steal other men’s labor or property but to agree with God’s commandment, “You shall not steal.”
True freedom is not the freedom to commit sexual immorality but to agree with God’s commandment, “You shall not commit adultery” and again, “You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife.”
True freedom is not the freedom to worship false gods whose laws and practices bring men into bondage but to agree with God’s commandment, “You shall have no other gods before Me.”
True freedom is not the freedom to lie, which some reserve for themselves but not to others, but to agree with God’s commandment, “You shall not bear false witness.”
True freedom is not found in a judicial system that allows government officials to lie to the public while condemning commoners for lying to government officials, for Mal. 2:9 condemns priests for “showing partiality in the instruction.” James 2:9 confirms this by saying,
9 But if you show partiality, you are committing sin and are convicted by the law as transgressors.
The law of impartiality resolves the problem of unjust class distinctions that Karl Marx failed to correct through Socialism. Whereas Marx set forth a graduated income tax as the Socialist solution to the problem of poverty, all he really did was to legalize theft in proportion to the value of one’s labor and income.
God’s law demanding love for foreigners or aliens, if implemented properly, should resolve the problem of racial privilege and slavery. Men usually have misunderstood and misinterpreted the law to mean that Israelites or Jews were a privileged class of “chosen people.” However, the law, the prophets, and the New Testament all make it clear that being chosen is based on one’s relationship with Jesus Christ and not one’s genealogical relationship to Abraham.
By understanding the difference between the Old and New Covenants, the problem of gender inequality is resolved. The Old Covenant (Hagar) was not an end in itself but was designed to show us its ultimate failure to achieve its stated goal. Only a New Covenant (Sarah) relationship governing male and female, husband and wife, can bring us into our full potential in the liberty of the gospel.
What the world has attempted to do by unlawful means, God has done by the counsel of His own will. Where the world has failed, God succeeds.
There are countless ways in which men have justified their partiality, elevating one man above another, granting governments the right to lie, kill, enslave, and to bestow privileges upon certain individuals or classes of people. Such partiality is based on carnal self-interest, not upon the principles of equality and liberty found in Scripture.
There is a vast difference between biblical slavery and the type of slavery normally practiced throughout history. The world practiced perpetual slavery for as long as a master desired. God allowed only temporary slavery, and its underlying purpose was to teach sinners how to work rather than to steal.
The only biblical justification for slavery is to enforce payment of debt, either on account of an unpaid loan or for a debt acquired by some sin or destruction of property. Yet such debts were limited by the law of Jubilee, in order that perpetual debt and slavery might be abolished.
The exception to this is when a man voluntarily devotes himself to be a slave on account of his great love for his master. Exodus 21:5, 6 says,
5 But if the slave plainly says, “I love my master, my wife and my children; I will not go out as a free man,” 6 then his master shall bring him to God [i.e., to the judges who represent God], then he shall bring him to the door or the doorpost. And his master shall pierce his ear with an awl; and he shall serve him permanently.
This law shows that the master of a slave ought not to mistreat his slave but to be like Christ to him—to win his loyalty and affection by love, not by fear. When we serve one who loves us, the slave master actually serves the slave, for he is responsible before God to bring that slave into his or her full potential and calling.
For this reason, Jesus taught that authority was to be used to serve others, rather than to be served by them (Matt. 20:25-28). Biblical slavery, then, gives the slave a useful education and purpose in life, for it prepares the slave to serve God as a productive citizen of the Kingdom.
Ultimately, this law applies to our own devotion to God, for when we learn to love our Master, we too will want to remain in His house and “serve him permanently.”
So also David presented Himself to God in this manner, which prophesied also of Jesus Christ. Psalm 40:6-8 says,
6 Sacrifice and meal offering Thou hast not desired; My ears Thou hast opened [with an awl, so to speak]; burnt offering and sin offering Thou hast not required. 7 Then I said, “Behold, I come; in the scroll of the book it is written of men; 8 I delight to do Thy will, O my God; Thy Law is written in my heart.”
It is the picture of a slave set free who returns to his master, saying, “Behold, I come.” Such a slave has truly heard the voice of the God of love and is in agreement with His will and His laws. Such a slave no longer desires to follow the dictates of the flesh, which only enslave him to his own passions and desires (Rom. 7:23). He returns to His master because he delights to do His will. Such a delight is characteristic of those hearts in which the divine law is written according to the provisions of the New Covenant (Heb. 8:10),
10 For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord. I will put My laws into their minds, and I will write them upon their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be My people.
When we come to know God through the example of Jesus Christ, it becomes a pleasure to become His slave and a delight to follow His laws. It is only when men do not know him or understand His laws that they rebel against Him and consider His laws to be oppressive or unspiritual.
Israel’s Captivity Ends 1776-1800
When we study timing and prophecy, a foundational truth is that long-term judgment upon Israel was set in terms of “seven times” (Lev. 26:18, 21, 24, 28). Centuries later, the prophet Daniel interpreted a “time” to mean a specific (though unspecified) period of time, giving the “little horn” 3½ “times” to rule (Daniel 7:25).
In Revelation 13:5, John quotes Daniel’s prophecies, interpreting these 3½ “times” more specifically as a period of “forty two months,” or 1,260 days. Since this described a period of long-term prophecy, this could only refer to 1,260 YEARS, that is, a day for a year.
The Hebrew word yom is translated “day” in the KJV a total of 2008 times, but it is also translated “year” 14 times. The word can mean either, and this supports the prophetic principle of a day for a year, as mentioned in Num. 14:34 and again in Ezekiel 4:4-6.
The point is that a “time” could be as short as a single day, or it could refer to a 360-day prophetic year. In long-term prophecy, it could refer to a 360-year cycle. Hence, a cycle of 7 times in long-term prophecy is 2,520 years, or 360 x 7 years.
This is how it is applied when we study the long-term judgment of God upon Israel and Judah. The tribes of Israel began to be captured and deported to Assyria in 745 B.C. This captivity was completed in 721 B.C., when Samaria, Israel’s capital, was destroyed.
Israel’s “seven times” of divine judgment, dating from 745 B.C., came to an end 2,520 years later in 1776, the year of America’s founding. If we date this cycle from the fall of Israel’s capital in 721 B.C., we come to the year 1800, the year that America’s capital was built.
It is clear, then, that there is a prophetic correlation between Israel and America. This is not to exclude other nations from the Commonwealth of Israel, but yet there is no doubt that America’s founding occurred at the end of a long cycle of captivity. In other words, America (not the Israeli state) fulfills the prophecies of Israel’s regathering.
The Importance of 1900
If we factor in the hundred years in which Jerusalem was independent from 163-63 B.C., depriving the Grecian Empire of its final century of beast rule, we must add that century to the year 1800 and arrive at the year 1900. Recall that we had to do this in the 2,520-year cycle of beast rule in connection to Judah and the Dominion Mandate. It makes sense, then, that the same must be done with the Birthright (or Fruitfulness Mandate) of Joseph-Ephraim-Israel.
This brings us to the Pentecostal outpouring on New Year’s Eve of 1900 in Topeka, Kansas, which occurred at Charles Parham’s Bible School.
What does this all mean? What correlation does the fall of Samaria have with the coming of Pentecost in 1900?
First of all, since we are dealing with the Birthright, we see that the outpouring of the Holy Spirit is perhaps the main feature of the Birthright, making it possible to bring forth the sons of God. Pentecost in Acts 2 was the launching of the Birthright provision, and this continued throughout every genuine Holy Spirit revival in later years.
However, for a long time the majority of Christians believed that Pentecost had virtually ended in the first century and that the gifts of the Spirit had ceased to operate in the Church after the death of the last Apostle. For this reason, a re-establishment of Pentecost was necessary to give us again the revelation of the feast days.
In fact, the Passover revelation was re-established in the Church through Martin Luther and other Reformers in the 1500’s, when they taught justification by faith in the blood of the Lamb. Pentecost was reintroduced in 1900, and we expect to see soon the renewal of the feast of Tabernacles.
In the progression of revelation toward the Kingdom, Pentecost was very important. In Moses’ day it was the feast where the law was given at Mount Horeb, showing us that its main purpose was to write the law on our hearts by hearing the word. In Acts 2 we see again how God spoke to the people in their own language to accomplish this.
However, Pentecost is a leavened feast (Lev. 23:17) apart from the baptism of fire. Historically, Pentecost has never been adequate to establish more than the Kingdom of Saul, who was also crowned on Pentecost (2 Sam. 12:17).
So although Pentecost was part of the divine revelation in the year 1900, we again see leaven in that feast, and the two loaves of Pentecostal bread has again become fully leavened in our day. If this were not so, there would be no need or hunger among Christians (including Pentecostals) for the final great outpouring of the Spirit.
The Leaven in the early 1900’s
The Pentecostal outpouring was timed to occur toward the end of the Philadelphia Church era (1776-1914), which covered most of the time of America’s Christian Republic. The Philadelphia Church established unprecedented liberty, but unfortunately, it failed to extend that liberty impartially to all races. Thus, it failed to fulfill the Abrahamic covenant to be a blessing to all families of the earth.
Even Charles Parham’s classes on Pentecost excluded black people. So William Seymour, the black minister under whose later ministry came the Azusa Street outpouring in Los Angeles, was forced to sit outside the door of the classroom to learn about the Holy Spirit.
Nonetheless, God honored his ministry, and Azusa Street saw a great move of the Holy Spirit in 1906. That revival was also leavened in some ways, but God moved in many miraculous ways, and Pentecost was established.
In my view, one of the main purposes of Pentecost in 1900 was to write some forgotten laws on the hearts of the believers. The law of Jubilee failed to gain recognition. So while many Black Pentecostal denominations were formed in those days, they failed to reach beyond the lessons that Peter was forced to learn in Acts 11.
Peter’s revelation in Acts 11:15-18 was that the Holy Spirit had been given to non-Jews (and non-Israelites). If he and the other disciples had understood the law properly, they would have seen that it was mandatory for aliens to keep the feast of Pentecost (Deut. 16:9-11).
The same, in fact, was true about Passover (Exodus 12:19) and Tabernacles (Deut. 16:14), showing clearly that the promises given to “the fathers” was not to be hoarded by their biological descendants.
The same principle holds true with the Jubilee and its anti-slavery provisions. The law demands equality for all and specifically forbids a two-tiered system of law, where Israelites might be favored above others (Num. 15:15, 16).
Yet just as this principle of equality had been forgotten by the first century, so also was it forgotten during the Roman Church’s domination during the Middle Ages, and even some Protestants rejected it in recent centuries.
This was the cause of many disputes in America, and in the end, the Christian view that prevailed overall was the one which justified slavery and entrenched a class system that was comparable to the first-century Jewish mindset.
The bottom line is that the Pentecostal outpouring of the early 1900’s did little to correct the problem, for most were unwilling to live by every word proceeding out of the mouth of God (Deut. 8:3; Matt. 4:4). Hence, as a whole, the full law could not be written on their hearts.
Under that limitation in understanding the laws of God, the Pentecostal movement followed the example of King Saul and built denominational walls, preferring the rule of men rather than the direct rule of God (1 Sam. 8:7). Thus, the blessings of Pentecost became limited, and the leaven grew until the “bread” was fully leavened.
If we ask ourselves what might have been, had the Pentecostal movement fulfilled its calling, I believe that America had the opportunity to avoid the final captivity to Mystery Babylon that was to begin in 1913 with the passage of the Federal Reserve Act. But this was not to be, for although this was God’s will, it was not His plan.
Judged Time for Israel in America
Judged Time is fairly rare, but it is one of the judgment time cycles seen by observation in Scripture. While Cursed Time is a cycle of 414 years, and Blessed Time is a cycle of 490 years, Judged Time is 434 years. While Cursed Time is generally for being cursed or for being in a calling that is not yours, Judged Time is for late obedience.
Israel’s judgment really began in 745 B.C., when the tribes east of the Jordan River were deported to Assyria. This started the long-term divine judgment on Israel. By doing the calculations, we find that the year 1860 was the end of 6 x 434 years from 745 B.C.
It was the year when America began to be split apart, leading to the great Civil War (1861-1865). While many argue that the root causes of this war were economic in nature, it is clear to me that God viewed it in terms of late obedience. Were they late in some economic way? Hardly. They were late in abolishing slavery in accordance with the Abrahamic mandate.
They had attempted to prohibit slavery in 1776 and again in 1789, but each time they failed. The problem festered until this issue reached a climax during the Civil War.
The great issue at the time of the early American colonies was whether or not certain men were privileged to rule over the “common” people. The long-held view of monarchs and popes had insisted upon their right to rule the commoners in a two-tiered class system. The Reformation had disavowed this, but the camp was divided by the two opinions.
Many Protestants saw slavery as another form of unequal justice. They saw the slave trade, not only as theft of labor but as the presumed right to kidnap men, a sin that carried the death penalty (Exodus 21:16).
The other side claimed that other races were not “men,” and therefore the law did not apply to them. Their reasoning was similar to that of Talmudic Judaism, which teaches that gentiles are comparable to cattle and that Jews may own gentiles as they would own cattle. In other words, Talmudic Judaism does not consider gentiles to be “men.”
Those “traditions of men” destroy the law and negate the Abrahamic covenant itself. Those who have such a mindset are not genuine children of Abraham, at least not by Paul’s definition in Gal. 3:28, 29. While we might excuse Jews for not learning Peter’s lesson in Acts 11, or not having Paul’s revelation about equality, how can Christians justify their adherence to slavery?