The Cultural Engagement
A few weeks ago I received several responses to the article "Registered to Pray." One response particularly evoked a yet deeper look into differentiating and rightly relating God's purposes between His eternal work of salvation and His temporal work among nations designed to service His eternal work. I have spoken to this repeatedly in past articles regarding "kingdom teaching," but find a constant need to drive home the truth concerning this. There is ever more the Lord has to say to clarify and purge and perfect our thinking regarding these two realms of purpose. And every time election season rolls around in the
, there is always an added demand for this discernment. I have produced Mary Belle's response below with my instructive reply to her at the bottom, which I am subtitling, "Discerning the Tiers of Divine Purpose." U.S.
On top of this, another reader just this week sent me a video of Dutch Sheets preaching on these same two areas, continuing to compartmentalize and confuse our relationship to these kingdom purposes as has been done for decades in false kingdom teaching. My response to her falls into the class of another article which I want to pass on to you also as it fits exactly with the discussion below. In that next article I will focus on the foundational belief behind false kingdom teaching called the "cultural mandate" which recently has come to be popularized under the name "The Seven Mountains."
From: Mary Belle
Sent: Saturday, January 14, 2012 2:12 PM
Subject: Re: First Love
Readers Circle: "Registered to Pray"
Dear Chris, My spirit is LEAPING at what you have written, this last Word. And it leaps because finally I am hearing a prophet of God speak the truth about the elections. And dear Brother, I do believe that you are a prophet, not only sent to speak His Word but to put that Word into written form. I "see" a prophet/teacher mix in you.And of course I do submit this to you for your prayers and confirmation. The Church at-large is "longing" for the RIGHT MAN to fix our government and if we can just get the "right one in" that will take care of everything. We are still only looking out for ourselves and not looking for or seeing the much larger picture of the Father, and WHAT IS HIS PURPOSE AND PLAN!
Also need to share with you a "picture" or vision that Father gave to me yesterday as as I was sitting with Him. Not really thinking about anything at all, just being with Him. I saw in this picture two very large Angels, on both sides of the
. They were lifting it up from its foundation, but I heard the word "moorings." Thought that a strange word, knew it refers to ships, but also that it means "beliefs, habits, ties that make one feel more secure." Then heard the Word ,"How blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD.!" Saw the Lord excavating all around the foundation that houses the "People's House." I believe that Father is going to show me more but right not I do perceive this, that HE IS TO BE THE REVELATION UPON WHICH THIS NATION (REPUBLIC) IS BUILT, AND THIS EVEN OVERRIDES THE CONSTITUTION. HE COMES BEFORE THE CONSTITUTION, EVEN THOUGH HE AUTHORED IT, BUT IS THE REVELATION AND THE FOUNDATION THAT WE MUST REST UPON. The Government of our Nation is being lifted up from its"moorings" and ALL that we have believed in and trusted in, good and bad, is being taken away and He will be the One to be revealed as to WHO HE IS, THE ETERNAL GOD, WHERE "RIGHTEOUSNESS AND JUSTICE ARE THE FOUNDATION OF HIS THRONE." Capitol Building
I submit all of this to you Chris for your observation and thoughts and prayers. I will have more to write later concerning some of your prayer requests, but this I do know by the Spirit, that indeed "The Spirit of Revelation and Wisdom" has been given to you and is upon you and that not only lwill you hear with the ears of your spirit more and more truth, but you will "SEE" with the eyes of your spirit into depths and visions that will astound and amaze and completely awe you. Please keep in thouch as Father leads, and will continue to lift you before His Throne of Grace.
With His Amazing Love,
P.S. The Picture that I was given was taking place NOW. Not for months from now, but for NOW!!!
Discerning the Tiers of Divine Purpose
Thank you much, Mary Belle, for your insights and presentation. Always a joy to hear from you!
Your response evokes from me the need to get into the discussion of the differing "tiers of divine purpose" that I referred to at the end of the last article. I want to use your vision of the capitol building as the backdrop for this discussion. It is extremely important that we come to a right discernment regarding these different tiersspecifically between God's supreme tier purpose of eternal salvation through the gospel and His temporal earthly tier of purpose regarding the placement, establishment and replacing of human nations, systems, governments and cultures. Confusion of these tiers lies at the heart of the divide between the true and false prophetic movements and true and false kingdom teaching across the generations. So it must be carefully explained and well understood.
Let's begin with a familiar illustration. It is the story of Elijah in the cave. The Lord produces three outward manifestations of power, none of which He is "in." These are wind, fire and an earthquake. Finally, after all this comes a still small voice. The Lord is in the Voice, and it is the Voice that causes Elijah to fall in trembling before the Lord. It is the Voice that reaches into Elijah's eternal soul and which actually changes Him.
This story well illustrates the differences between God's tiers of purpose between His temporal workings among nations and His eternal saving of men's souls. The Lord's work among the nations of the earth is like the wind, earthquake and fire. He does these things among the nations, but He is not IN them. He works among the kingdoms of men for the sake of His long term eternal purposes, but He is not IN their kingdoms. They are not HIS kingdoms. Nor can they be for the reasons I described in the last article. By contrast, the Lord is IN His Voice. His Voice is His eternal purpose toward salvation. His Voice is the essence of His eternal kingdom. It is what the death of His Son, the slain "Lamb on the Throne" is all about. This IS His kingdom.
The key to understand is this: It is the Voice and before the Voice alone that we are to fall in worshipnot the wind, the earthquake and the fire of God's demonstrated activity among the nations involving the prophetic engagements of His people before kings and rulers. We must discern the difference between His "louder" but lower level purposes for us regarding national affairs and issues, and His "quieter" but highest level purpose to reach men with the words of eternal life. So let's explore this further.
Wherever God is working among the nations, He is doing so not for their own sake, i.e., the sake of "nation building," but for the sake of His eternal purpose toward eternal salvation. Paul sums it up in this word to the Athenians:
26 and He made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their habitation, 27 that they would seek God, if perhaps they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us. Acts 17
Paul is telling us that God's appointments regarding all nations is specifically designed in some way to service His purpose to reveal Who He is to men toward eternal salvation. The idea of "appointed times and the boundaries of their habitations" embraces everything about the way nations are set up to function as well as where they are located and when in history. Some are for nobler purposes and others for baser purposes (including the kingdom of the antichrist). But all of it services in some way His efforts to reach for the eternal in men. None of it is for its own sake or has any other lasting value or importance. As Isaiah said it, the nations are to the Lord as "a drop in a bucket." That is how much He esteems the nations!
But discernment regarding this is where the problem begins. God's people are always ignorantly enamored of earth, wind and fire. They are always impressed by the bombastic, by the large, by the visibly huge in scale. Their aspiration is to be part of the "biggest" that can be seen and apprehended in God's activity. For them, the size of the activity defines what God is IN. The BIGGER the divine purpose of which THEY can conceive, the more God must be IN it. And since the largest visible scope of activity to us is the level of nationhood and international affairs, God's people flock to embrace God's subsidiary purposes regarding nations, and define His ultimate eternal purpose IN terms of His work among them. As a result, the truth of the gospel is redefined in terms of divine / angelic national activity and is otherwise ignored.
Has anyone noticed how almost every "cutting edge" church nowadays has a "vision for the nations" or an "international vision?" How many churches with the name "
Global Outreach Center"or " or some such grandiose name can anyone count? How many church buildings can you walk into now and see some world map up in the foyer with a tiny pin marking the church's location and streaks of lines going out to all kinds of countries where the church is supposedly making an "impact"? And if your church is rich enough, maybe it even has a huge spinning globe right up behind the preacher in the pulpit for everyone in TV land to gaze on and be awed by. Meanwhile, the gospel and any sound teaching on the inner life is an afterthought World Harvest Center"
But why is that? It's because we do not know the difference between wind, earthquake, fire and the still small Voice. God's people believe God is IN what He DOES, not in Who He IS apart from all that He does. And again, the larger the enterprise, the more He must be IN it. And nations are the largest enterprise going on the planet. So that's where everyone wants to be, thinking that this puts them at the "center of God's heart."
This confusion has gripped the prophetic and intercessory movements in a huge way. These movements are nation focused, not gospel focused. For a couple decades now there has been this huge emphasis on "national destinies" (like what is that all about?) And the prophetic airwaves and blogs are filled with blabber and jabber about "angels over this country" and "angels over that country" and "angels over the White House" and "angels going from state to state on white horses," and on and on and on. as if this is what God is all aboutwhat He is IN. This is at the "center of His heart." (How many times have we heard "The nations are at the center of God's heart?")
Once you believe that God is IN what He DOES, and the bigger He DOES it the more He is IN it, and you conclude that His "work" to positively affect cultures on the national and international level is the BIGGEST thing going, then it is impossible not to conclude that HIS kingdom is defined by what He "does" in this way among the kingdoms of THIS WORLD. In antichrist fashion then, the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ is become the kingdoms of this world. Our enamoration of God's work pertaining to national issues has led to our subtle redefining of His kingdom in terms of the world's kingdoms. And this has been going on for centuries. And where God's work has been most evident, namely in
America, it has led to the ascribing of the U.S. Government as a virtual expression of the . It has led to the mesmerizing of God's prophetic and intercessory people with its political affairs apart from the critical issue of eternal life through Christ. This is what we see both in the evangelical and prophetic church alikemesmerization with government, with elections, with the Constitution, etc. in the quest to be 'aligned with God's 'holy purpose' for our government" kingdomof God
Here is the true holy separation I want to highlight, and use your prophetic vision for instructive correction. God has been at work in
for a long time. He still is. Historically, His work has been perhaps more prominent in America Americathan in any other nation except . But that does not make Israel "His kingdom" or "His nation" (or as it is usually called, a "Christian nation.") America with its government is a utilitarian instrument, but not a living vessel in the hand of the Lord. Only the body of Christ is that Living Vessel and that Holy Habitation for the Lord. The Church is the only "nation" whose God is intrinsically the Lord or can be. He can intrinsically be the God of only those who possess His life and nature in Christ. America
With that, let me comment on some of your specific thoughts for clarity. A natural house can only be built on a natural foundation. A spiritual house can only be built on a spiritual foundation. A natural house cannot be built on a spiritual foundation. In the case at hand, no human government can be built on the government of God. The two are of different "knowledge bases" as I described last article. What this means for your vision is that, if the Lord is excavating a new foundation under the "house of the people," it also means a new house is to be built. On a new foundation,
will no longer be a republic as we know it. The people's house itself is to be replaced. America
One thing I find it necessary to repeatedly stress in discussions like this is that the
replaces the kingdoms of this world, it does not "convert" them. This is because flesh is not convertible to spirit. "That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the spirit is spirit." The idea of replacement is not well received, especially in messianic Jewish circles, but again is critical to right understanding about these things. Our adamic identity is not converted to Christ, it is replaced by Christ. "All things are passed away, behold all things are become new." The same holds true in extension to the concept of kingdom. The eternal kingdom of life (the kingdom of God) replaces the kingdoms of sin and of death built on human principles and laws (the kingdoms of this world)even as the New Covenant of Life replaced the Mosaic Covenant of Law under sin and death. It does not convert them. They are not convertible. This applies to the kingdomof God . So I would look for this in your vision as it further unfolds. American Republic
Let's also comment then on the present "house of the people" and on the Constitution as you referenced them. Here again clarity is needed. You are correct that the Constitution is to be overridden. This is because it is to be replaced as stated above. But what must also be made clear is that the present Constitution and government is a product of a divine "working" of the Lordas in wind, earthquake-fire (an "instrument" if you will). But it is not a product of His Voice. God did not "speak" the Constitution into being as if it were the product of divine inspiration through holy men of God moved upon by the Holy Spirit. It is not scripture. It is not even prophecy. Rather, God provided illumination to unregenerate minds that overrode their own wisdom and petty egos, wranglings and jealousies in the course of the Constitution's writing. (As the originally unsaved Thomas Jefferson said to Terry Bennett in Terry's 2001 transport to heaven, "Do you think I wrote this by my own wisdom?")
Illumination is not the same as inspiration. Because of this, it is not accurate to say that God "authored" the Constitution. It is better to say that He "superintended" its writing and overruled its authoring. This may seem like a small point, but it is not. It is over such small words that the word of truth is so easily misdirected into confusion. A good biblical example of the difference between God's authorship and His superintendence is the decree of Cyrus to release
from captivity. God did not "inspire" this heathen king with any divine words, but He raised him up just the same to issue that decree. (For a deeper look at how the Lord works in national affairs without specifically inhabiting them, you can check out my article on the Cyrus Anointing from the series The Body and the Beast.) Israel
These necessary clarifications cause me to remark that what the prophetic church in
needs is to be brought to the same "cave" experience that Elijah was brought to. The prophetic needs to "go to the cave" where it can be purged of its inability to discern divine activity from divine Voice with the differing tiers of purpose of each. (That is what I see as the "now" factor in your vision. And I believe it started as a result of the great prophetic failure over the last election.) It's not until this circumcision of heart takes place in the American prophetic that a true Elijah movement can come forth here. The question remains, what will it take to completely work this kind of circumcision? I don't have the answer to that. But if the visions of Terry Bennett are at all accurate, and the question of whether America will even continue as a nation is on the table in heaven, it is not impossible to imagine what it may and likely will take. In all cases, we do need to prepare for the replacement of America as we know it for the establishing of our true kingdom. America
I hope this discussion might also clarify my own involvement in political intercessions. It's easy for one to conclude that anyone actively prophetically engaging the political affairs is part of the same prophetic "dominionist" crowd as every one else who is praying and prophesying toward the "conversion" of the system at the expense of God's eternal replacement purposes. For me, that is not so, any more than it was for Elijah who confronted the kings of his day. My involvements are strictly for the advancement of the
and of Eternal Life. Like the many, I want to see the kingdom brought to earthbut not by the "converting of the system to Christ," but by its replacing through the powers of Eternal Life and the world to come. To that end, may I be a part of whatever it is your vision is indicating! kingdomof God
Many blessings again.
New Meadow Neck, RI
First Love Ministry
- a ministry of Anglemar Fellowship
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Page created May 25, 2012