Bloodlines, Genealogies And The Prophetic
Transiting from the Current to the Eternal Prophetic
One of today's great confusions of prophetic ministry is in its relationship to the identities of human people groups such as nations and races. A tension exists between two prophetic dimensions—between those who prophesy about nations and those who prophesy us beyond a vision of nations to the leaving of them behind.
This is because the prophetic has two aspects. The "Current Prophetic" issues prophecies about men the way they are. On the other hand, the "Eternal Prophetic" issues prophecies that call us out of and beyond humanity the way it is and toward where we are headed as immortals.
Most prophecy today is from the Current dimension. Most ministries prophesy about the minutiae of current events and the implications for nations of their current actions. (An obvious example is the focus on America in its relation to Israel and the impending Iraq war.) Such prophecy is taken up with the symbolic meanings of names, places, and the impact of historic events on present bloodlines and genealogies. So we also hear much from these voices about issues like racial reconciliations and intercessory mapping.
A smaller more hidden prophetic dimension is focused—not on the way things are among the peoples—but on where all who are called of God from among all nations are headed eternally—without respect to bloodlines, genealogies, national identities or current events. The emphasis from these voices is on transitioning us out from human identity into purified spiritual identity. They stress personal accountability for sin, individual pursuit of perfection in Christ, and the finishing of a race that takes us totally out from the limitations of temporal awareness into the dominion of eternal awareness over all earthly issues.
First the Natural, then the Spiritual
Each prophetic dimension has its place. It's not so much that one is exclusively right and the other wrong. But there is a development, timing and transition that needs to be made from Current to Eternal prophetic. There is a time to be concerned with what is happening among the nations, and to minister to nationals on this level. But we must progress beyond this to the eternal vision that leaves nationalism and its sorrows behind, and actually brings the called into mature governmental authority over the nations. For one can only govern what he has first outgrown.
Paul describes this transition in Galatians and Romans. He speaks of a place where we first are children under tutors subject to fleshly principles. But then he says we must grow out from this to become mature "sons" who are secure in eternal identity. As long as we are children, we are governed by the principles children are subject to. But once we become sons, we are freed from childish (ie, earthly-centered) principles to become co-governors with Christ over the earthly.
This applies to the prophetic. Some have commented that the prophetic has "a lot of growing up to do." And this is so. But it is precisely in this arena of "earth-to-eternity identity transition" that the prophetic must grow up.
While earth-level prophesying about nations with their signs, times and seasons is certainly from the Lord, it speaks to us as "children" under the first fleshly principles of our national and racial identities. But we must not just perceive and prophesy to the seasons of man and his issues. We must perceive the season of the prophetic itself as it beckons us beyond God's prophetic words to "nations" toward a far weightier call and destiny. We must remember that in the big picture, all nations are to God only as a "drop in the bucket" and "potsherds" striving with one another.
The Space Shuttle Disaster: A "Sign" to Children
It was inevitably only a matter of time (hours or days) before we were to hear someone find prophetic symbolism on the American shuttle disaster—specifically, how that an American ship with an Israeli astronaut broke up over Palestine, Texas—how that this was a sign of impending American disaster over the Middle East. Such was its obviousness.
The truth is, this may well be so. We have seen similar signs occur with other events, and seen some prophecies—even weather events—come to pass on this level. Those who are of the earth are also under the principles of this earthly prophetic dimension.
But the larger truth here is that we are only subject to the prophetic according to what we are. If as spiritual babes we consider ourselves to be Americans, then we are indeed subject to the baser prophetic principles that speak to people as Americans. If we are children, we are under the prophetic of signs and symbologies that tutor children.
But if we are not Americans or of any nationality, but sons of God and children only of the Most High, then we are delivered from subjection to earthly prophetic principles with their signs. No one who graduates from Current prophecy to Eternity prophecy remains ultimately worked-up about the issues of nations, nor the prophetic signs that may apply to peoples under tutelage at that human identity level, true as the signs may otherwise be.
Coming to a True New Testament Prophetic Identity
The beauty of the New Testament is that, as a prophetic book, it goads us perpetually out of the earthly and into the heavenly. It is focused on the eternal dimension. Jesus showed little respect for natural ancestries. "Except you repent, you will all likewise perish." Paul also directed our focus away from genealogies and bloodlines. He had no respect for them. For Paul and all apostles, fleshly national applications are regarded as "first principles" which must be surpassed.
This must also be our attitude concerning prophecy. There is a place for first principles. But they also must be outgrown. The problem with today's prophetic is not that it speaks to nations over current events, but that it rarely grows past this to gain mature rooting in vision for eternal transition. It remains "Old Testament class" prophecy, focused on nations and events, as children under tutors. It remains enamored of its own signs.
For those reaching for something higher and more clearly grounded in New Covenant values, nation-focused prophecy is "getting old" fast and proving a barrenness to the soul. There is a call today to a higher prophetic order. It is the Order of Melchizedech, who was "without father or mother, without descent."
(As a post-script to the impending American-Iraq war situation, let me only say this. I personally concur with those who believe that this war fever will ultimately prove to be a major mis-step of American pride leading to severe judgment. But I would add: the real judgment will be upon the pride—not simply of the American ego, but upon the carnal American prophetic church which shares that ego and cannot discern between being American and being Eternally destined as a called-out race in the earth. In the end, if the severe consequences of this war serve to finally shake large portions of American propheticism out of its childhood alignment with American identity into eternal identity, then the costs of the war will have proven to be a blessing in disguise. And should America win unscathed, it is the church that will ultimately continue to lose.)
"When the Son of Man comes, will He find faith in the earth?"
Only those who are "ready" will be changed ("taken") when the Lord comes. This readiness is about more than discerning of signs or making physical preparations for the tribulation. This readiness has to do with the maturity that fits sons to become governors and a woman to become a bride and a wife.
The way Jesus asked His question about whether there would be faith at His coming assumes that He will not find much. What kind of faith does He mean? Faith in Him as Savior? Faith for spiritual gifts? No. He means the kind of mature faith necessary to be changed. It includes the faith to transcend national and racial origins.
Today, there is much prophetic. But being prophetic does not make one ready for the Lord's arrival, if that prophetic remains caught up with the events of nations, including Israel. Nation-centered prophecy past its season actually keeps us from being ready because we are not being taught to graduate—to come to see ourselves as not belonging to or identified with nations, genealogies and bloodlines, but only to an Eternal lineage rooted in One Who has no descent.
May these thoughts help us put the prophetic in time and eternity into perspective.
New Meadow Neck, RI
First Love Ministry
- a ministry of Anglemar Fellowship
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Page created October 22, 2003