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Rehoboam’s Folly

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Discussion

Kings of Israel #2

“Rehoboam’s Folly”

Key Verses: 1Ki 12:1-15, 2Ch 10:1-15

 In this study, we want to review the Scriptures that speak to the events that precipitated the revolt of ten tribes of Israel and the resulting division that lasted until the divided nations were taken captive by the Assyrians and Babylonians, respectfully. It’s is needed to remind ourselves these events define our spiritual experiences as Israel within is being divided.

1Ki 12:1  And Rehoboam went to Shechem: for all Israel were come to Shechem to make him king. 

1Ki 12:2  And it came to pass, when Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who was yet in Egypt, heard of it, (for he was fled from the presence of king Solomon, and Jeroboam dwelt in Egypt;) 

1Ki 12:3  That they sent and called him. And Jeroboam and all the congregation of Israel came, and spake unto Rehoboam, saying, 

1Ki 12:4  Thy father made our yoke grievous: now therefore make thou the grievous service of thy father, and his heavy yoke which he put upon us, lighter, and we will serve thee. 

1Ki 12:5  And he said unto them, Depart yet for three days, then come again to me. And the people departed. 

1Ki 12:6  And king Rehoboam consulted with the old men, that stood before Solomon his father while he yet lived, and said, How do ye advise that I may answer this people

1Ki 12:7  And they spake unto him, saying, If thou wilt be a servant unto this people this day, and wilt serve them, and answer them, and speak good words to them, then they will be thy servants for ever

1Ki 12:8  But he forsook the counsel of the old men, which they had given him, and consulted with the young men that were grown up with him, and which stood before him: 

1Ki 12:9  And he said unto them, What counsel give ye that we may answer this people, who have spoken to me, saying, Make the yoke which thy father did put upon us lighter? 

1Ki 12:10  And the young men that were grown up with him spake unto him, saying, Thus shalt thou speak unto this people that spake unto thee, saying, Thy father made our yoke heavy, but make thou it lighter unto us; thus shalt thou say unto them, My little finger shall be thicker than my father’s loins. 

1Ki 12:11  And now whereas my father did lade you with a heavy yoke, I will add to your yoke: my father hath chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions. 

This coming divide of Israel is spiritually the divide between our doctrine (hearing) and our doing (walking it out).  To be made perfect by the Lord and establish a firm foundation (twelve); both our doctrine and our deeds (heaven and earth) need work in the fiery furnace. The two tribes of Judah represent our witness for Christ who is inseparable from His Word which is His Doctrine. The ten northern tribes of Israel represent our walk (obedience or disobedience) as we are first trying to perfect ourselves in our own strength (the number ten) before we come to know and rest by being One in Christ (Truth).  This division and inward conflict are for our good in bringing confidence in the flesh to an end (Phi 3:3)and dragging us into the true rest (Heb 4:10). Both those near (Judah) and those far off (Israel in the North) are brought together as one.

Eph 2:13  But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off (separated) are made nigh by the blood of Christ.

Eph 2:14  For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us;

Eph 2:15  Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace;

Eph 2:16  And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:

Eph 2:17  And came and preached peace to you which were afar off (Israel), and to them that were nigh (Judah).

Rom 7:25  I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind (Judah) I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh (Israel) the law of sin.

Rehoboam’s Folly

The name Rehoboam [H7346] means “a people has enlarged” and appropriately speaks to how corrupted doctrine, leavened bread, leads us astray from the narrow way.

Mat 7:13  Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:

Mat 7:14  Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

It is indeed a narrow way of faith and Rehoboam picked up where his apostate father (Solomon) left off in making the apostasy even wider. Kings of the Lord possess great knowledge and spiritual power that is first abused and misused in exalting ourselves.

Rom 1:21  Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.

Rom 1:22  Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,

Rehoboam was born out of the misconduct of Solomon’s with his many wives and concubines. Woman represent churches and whom we engage with in seeking to bear fruit unto the Lord.  We learn later (1Ki 14:21) that Rehoboam’s mother’s name was Naamah which means pleasure, and who was also an Ammonite. The fact Solomon intermarried with Egyptians, Ammonites and many other heathens in disobedience to the law did not bode well for the blessings or curses that would soon fall upon his house. Ammonites, like Moabites, symbolize our own carnal thoughts that we exalt above the Lord and in so doing commit spiritual incest and fornication with our own flesh. That is the spiritual significance of Ammonites and Moabites birthed from physical incest (Gen 19:37-38) and why that mindset is forbidden in the congregation of the Lord.

Deu 23:3  An Ammonite or Moabite shall not enter into the congregation of the LORD; even to their tenth generation shall they not enter into the congregation of the LORD forever:

An Ammonite spirit has us leaning on our own understanding and exalting ourselves versus seeking wisdom from the Church (Eph 3:10) and its multitude of counselors.  Solomon, the author of Proverbs, truly fell away and took no heed the Scripture he was inspired to write many years prior.

Pro 3:5  Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.

Pro 3:6  In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.

Pro 3:7  Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil.

The Gathering at Shechem

The gathering of Israel to make Rehoboam king takes place at Shechem (Sichem) which is a place rich in many illustrious events in the history of Israel. Shechem is the first place Abram met the Lord and was given the promise (Gen 12:6-7). Shechem is where Jacob, a type of our old man is buried (Act 7:26) and where the bones of Joseph (a type of Christ) were laid many years after his death (Jos 24:32). Shechem is where all of Israel came together to renew the covenant with the Lord.

Jos 24:1  Then Joshua gathered all the tribes of Israel to Shechem and called for the elders of Israel, for their heads, for their judges, and for their officers; and they presented themselves before God.

Jos 24:25  So Joshua made a covenant with the people that day, and set them a statute and an ordinance in Shechem.

Shechem means “shoulder” and symbolizes where our spiritual head sits on our body attached via a neck which is our burden. That burden is supposed to be light and the yoke easy if we truly believe and walk by faith.

Gal 3:11  But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.

Mat 11:29  Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.

Mat 11:30  For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light. 

The significance of this event being at Shechem relates to the yoke or burden that the heads (kings) of Israel place upon the people. The law of Moses/Gentiles is an oppressive yoke and heavy burden because anyone in the flesh outside the Law of faith cannot please God (Rom 8:8) no matter how hard they try. It is only under the law of Faith where we trust in Christ and nothing of ourselves that we are being saved. It takes us years of trials to get this straight in our heaven and our earth (Act 14:22). The earlier disciples, having the Spirit of God, struggled to get this right as we do (Mat 4:4).

Act 15:9  And put no difference between us and them, purifying their hearts by faith.

Act 15:10  Now therefore why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear?

When we come to our wit’s end of laboring in our own strength to save ourselves, then the Lord begins to raise us up in righteousness.

Mat 11:28  Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

A head full of carnal ordinances is a heavy burden that is taken away only in and by our day of the Lord by the working of the Word.

Isa 10:27  And it shall come to pass in that day, that his burden shall be taken away from off thy shoulder, and his yoke from off thy neck, and the yoke shall be destroyed because of the anointing.

Shechem spiritually represents the place where we, as Israel, come together to seek peace and a new mindset to guide our lives as God’s people. The burden and bondage Israel had been under during Solomon’s reign quickly become a key to the story of Rehoboam.   With Solomon dead, Jeroboam, the former servant and now adversary of Solomon’s house, returns from Egypt to counsel Rehoboam on how to unite Israel in peace.

1Ki 12:2  And it came to pass, when Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who was yet in Egypt, heard of it, (for he was fled from the presence of king Solomon, and Jeroboam dwelt in Egypt;) 

1Ki 12:3  That they sent and called him. And Jeroboam and all the congregation of Israel came, and spake unto Rehoboam, saying, 

1Ki 12:4  Thy father made our yoke grievous: now therefore make thou the grievous service of thy father, and his heavy yoke which he put upon us, lighter, and we will serve thee. 

Israel had been heavily taxed and oppressed during Solomon’s reign all the while he got the glory and admiration of the world. Solomon building a temple of the Lord using forced labor and the labor of Tyre (Babylon) is a shadow of us building a temple in vain (Psa 127:1) using our own hands (self-righteous works) in a covenant with the world.

1Ki 5:12  And the LORD gave Solomon wisdom, as he promised him: and there was peace between Hiram (Tyre’s king) and Solomon; and they two made a league together. 

1Ki 5:13  And king Solomon raised a levy out of all Israel; and the levy was thirty thousand men.

Solomon was a building machine and has Israel working hard constantly on many construction projects (1Ki Chapter 9) in the name of the Lord.  But as we see in Ecc 2, it was all really for Solomon’s benefit and his namesake of I, Me and My!

Ecc 2:4  I made me great works; I builded me houses; I planted me vineyards …

Ecc 2:9  So I was great, and increased more than all that were before me in Jerusalem: also my wisdom remained with me.

Rather than serving the people, Solomon has the people of Israel serving him.

1Ki 9:22  But of the children of Israel did Solomon make no bondmen: but they were men of war, and his servants, and his princes, and his captains, and rulers of his chariots, and his horsemen.

Israel wanted relief from this hard levy and taxing burden.  So Jeroboam requested that Rehoboam make lighter the burden Solomon initiated.  As God’s people walking by faith, we stubbornly learn the lesson that is not up to us but the Lord to give the increase and overcoming and it resting in those promises that victory will come if we wait for it.

Flesh naturally seeks dominion over others and corrupts the divine service that is the duty of Christ’s kings and priests (Rom 12:1). Samuel had warned of this apostasy and issues before the first king was raised up and which the history of these kings and our spiritual maturing is bearing out.

1Sa 8:10  And Samuel told all the words of the LORD unto the people that asked of him a king.

1Sa 8:11  And he said, This will be the manner of the king that shall reign over you: He will take your sons, and appoint them for himself, for his chariots, and to be his horsemen; and some shall run before his chariots.

1Sa 8:12  And he will appoint him captains over thousands, and captains over fifties; and will set them to ear his ground, and to reap his harvest, and to make his instruments of war, and instruments of his chariots…….

1Sa 8:17  He will take the tenth of your sheep: and ye shall be his servants. 

The greater we move away from faith and back into the wide way of the world, the more we are adding an increasingly oppressive yoke and heavier burden to our walk with Christ. Solomon was disobedient to all the laws of the kings (Deu 17:16-20) and exalted himself.

Mat 23:11  But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant.

Mat 23:12  And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.

A king who is not a servant to his people is an oppressor of the people. That is what the carnal mind and law of self-righteousness have us doing to the inhabitants of the Kingdom both and without ourselves. Christ is our example of what a king is to do for His people.

Mat 20:25  But Jesus called them to Himself and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and those who are great exercise authority over them.

Mat 20:26  Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you, let him be your servant.

Rehoboam sends the people away for three days, his process of spiritual maturity, so he can seek counsel and respond to Israel’s request.

1Ki 12:5  And he said unto them, Depart yet for three days, then come again to me. And the people departed. 

1Ki 12:6  And king Rehoboam consulted with the old men, that stood before Solomon his father while he yet lived, and said, How do ye advise that I may answer this people

1Ki 12:7  And they spake unto him, saying, If thou wilt be a servant unto this people this day, and wilt serve them, and answer them, and speak good words to them, then they will be thy servants forever.

Going to the old men is going to the elders and the mature in the ways of the Lord. Wise  counsel is given to Rehoboam that reinforces the example of faith and its law of reaping.

Luk 6:38  Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.

Joh 12:26  If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will my Father honour.

Lest we forget what serving the living God looks like, we have the parable of Mat 25 teaching us what those being made righteous by faith are doing and to whom.

Mat 25:37  Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink?

Mat 25:38  When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee?

Mat 25:39  Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee?

Mat 25:40  And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. 

It was not ordained for Rehoboam (us) at this time to learn the lesson that kings are to serve. Flesh does not naturally want to serve but to rather be served and enlarge its own borders.  Rehoboam rejects the elders’ counsel and instead seeks out the immature (young men) that will tell his fleshly ears what it wants to hear.

1Ki 12:8  But he forsook the counsel of the old men, which they had given him, and consulted with the young men that were grown up with him, and which stood before him: 

1Ki 12:9  And he said unto them, What counsel give ye that we may answer this people, who have spoken to me, saying, Make the yoke which thy father did put upon us lighter? 

1Ki 12:10  And the young men that were grown up with him spake unto him, saying, Thus shalt thou speak unto this people that spake unto thee, saying, Thy father made our yoke heavy, but make thou it lighter unto us; thus shalt thou say unto them, My little finger shall be thicker than my father’s loins. 

True Jews in the Spirit desire to walk by faith and carry the lighter burden versus the alternative way of salvation, the heavy yoke of self-righteousness, which is not a way at all (Joh 6:44, Joh 14:6). Seeking counsel from the youth that we grew up, the children of an apostate Solomon’s 700 spiritual concubines and 300 heathen wives, is seeking council from the world and the unbelieving.

Pro 13:20  He that walketh with wise men shall be wise: but a companion of fools shall be destroyed.

Fearing the Lord begins true wisdom and that only begins once we are put into the fire of judgment where we are learning (Isa 26:9) and buying the true gold.

Pro 1:7  The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.

Rev 3:18  I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.

Rehoboam typifies the Nicolaitan and Pharisaical spirit that seeks dominion over others and exalts itself for its own gain and glory. When we realize we of ourselves can do nothing (Joh 15:5) then the idea of an appointed king doing service begins to resonate. Knowledge and power puff us up and we get spiritually fat (Deu 32:15) and we grow thick (thinking more highly of ourselves).  Fiery grace will chasten us and get us past this stronghold.

Rom 12:3  For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.

Rom 12:4  For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office:

Rehoboam’s counsel from the young and immature (mixed multitude mindset) is to add sin to sin or as the modern adage says adding insult to injury.

1Ki 12:11  And now whereas my father did lade you with a heavy yoke, I will add to your yoke: my father hath chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions. 

Whips are used to teach and correct horses which are themselves a symbol of the world and the strength of the flesh. Such worldliness was Solomon’s downfall in acquiring thousands of horses from Egypt (1Ki 4:26) that was a consequence of failing to separate from the heathen nations. Adding to Solomon’s yoke is going even further away from faith. Scorpions are the lies and false doctrines of the world and of Babylon in which we are coming out of and which we have power over, if we act upon it.

Eze 2:6  And thou, son of man, be not afraid of them, neither be afraid of their words, though briers and thorns be with thee, and thou dost dwell among scorpions: be not afraid of their words, nor be dismayed at their looks, though they be a rebellious house.

Luk 10:19  Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.

Adding in more lies and carnal doctrines (scorpions) only further oppresses and enslaves the people of Israel, separating them from faith and the easier yoke of the Lord.  The locusts of Revelation 9 are the false doctrines that block out the sun (Truth) which are likened unto to scorpions that sting and torment us. There is no overcoming (dying) when these scorpions are oppressing Israel because we are not in faith.

Rev 9:3  Then out of the smoke locusts came upon the earth. And to them was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power.

Rev 9:6  In those days men will seek death and will not find it; they will desire to die, and death will flee from them.

We have every reason and incentive as God’s people to actively seek to loosen these bands of wickedness and the yoke of our unbelief. Getting rid of this yoke opens us up to serve the living God and then the overcoming comes and the land within us is truly being healed.

Isa 58:6  Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke?

Isa 58:7  Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? when thou seest the naked, that thou cover him; and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh?

Yet before there can be healing there must be further wounding at the hand of the Lord in the Kingdom of God within us (Deu 32:39).  Rehoboam takes the advice of fools rather than the elders and goes deeper into his father’s apostasy.  We see another witness of the Lord causing us to err from His ways (Isa 63:17) and working all things (Eph 1:11); even Rehoboam’s self-exaltation and cruelty in seeking dominion over Israel.

1Ki 12:12  So Jeroboam and all the people came to Rehoboam the third day, as the king had appointed, saying, Come to me again the third day.

1Ki 12:13  And the king answered the people roughly, and forsook the old men’s counsel that they gave him;

1Ki 12:14  And spake to them after the counsel of the young men, saying, My father made your yoke heavy, and I will add to your yoke: my father also chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions.

1Ki 12:15  Wherefore the king hearkened not unto the people; for the cause was from the LORD, that he might perform his saying, which the LORD spake by Ahijah the Shilonite unto Jeroboam the son of Nebat.

All of these evil experiences are the Lord’s work in us (Isa 45:7, Ecc 1:13) to mature us and teach us when the chastening time has come.

Psa 34:19  YLT Many are the evils (“ra”) of the righteous, Out of them all doth Jehovah deliver him.

Php 2:13  For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.

Next week Lord willing, we will look back to where the Lord gave the prophecy (1Ki 11:29-32) to Jeroboam and see how the harsh answer of Rehoboam quickly led to the division of Israel and the appointment of Jeroboam as king of the northern kingdom. The process of moving onward to maturity is indeed one of the great tribulations and inner torment.

Articles

Exposing the Lie

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Introduction

This study is based on a letter that I am writing to my dear chiropractor [80 years old] who showed much LOVE and KINDNESS to me according to his understanding in my suffering here in a vessel of clay and now and whom God THROUGH Christ is ordaining that I may show him the TRUE LOVE of God through Christ. And we know what love is:

Joh 14:21  He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him. 

 How do we keep His Word if we do not have the TRUTH of His doctrines and His  POWER, His Words of Spirit and Life, to walk out that Truth?

Joh 1:17  For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ. 

 Joh 6:63  It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life. 

Let us look at Scriptures to give us the answers and not think ABOVE what is written.

1Co 4:6  And these things, brethren, I have in a figure transferred to myself and to Apollos for your sakes; that ye might learn in us NOT TO THINK of men above that which is written, that no one of you be puffed up for one against another. 

Before we encounter the TRUE Christ, our heavens are tainted by many lies and false doctrines and the Lord REQUIRES it from our hand, that if the enemies of the cross of Christ, are willing to listen for a moment and ASK of us, we may give them the Truths of His Word.

1Pe 3:14  But and if ye suffer for righteousness’ sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled; 1Pe 3:15  But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear: 

 Rom 12:20  Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head. Rom 12:21  Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good. 

 With this being said, let us look a little closer at the false doctrine of free will.

 Free Will

Why does Christ, the LIVING Word say, “Come let us reason together”, when in reality …

Pro 21:1 The king’s heart is in the hand of the LORD, [as] the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will…  

Joh 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw [ Gk. – drag] him?

 The answer is that while God, the Father, is all knowing (Isa 46:10) [Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure…] we, on the other hand, do NOT know what tomorrow brings. Consequently, we make daily decisions AS IF we, ourselves, are making those decisions when the Truth is: it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure (Php 2:13). So, then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy (Rom 9:16). Is this also true of those He asks to “Come and let us reason together?” Is it true for those of whom He says: Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hears my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me (Rev 3:20)? Here is the answer:

Joh 6:44 No man can come to [ sup with] me, except the Father which hath sent me draw [drag] him.

So, while the word “responsibility” is nowhere mentioned in Scripture, the word “account” is everywhere mentioned.

Rom 14:12  So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God. 

Rom 2:6  Who will render to every man according to his deeds: 

 God, the Father, through Christ is the great CAUSER of ALL things which all of humanity ever do, has done or will do. It is true for every person who lives, has lived or whoever will live. Freewill is a false doctrine, consider these truths:

Pro 16:1 The preparations of the heart in man, and the answer of the tongue, is from the LORD.

 Pro 16:4 The LORD hath made all things for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil.

 A NT witness:

 Eph 1:11 In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of HIS OWN will: Eph 1:12 That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first [“first,” not ‘only’] trusted in Christ.

Christ does not hold us accountable for anything we do. Paul makes it clear the sin we commit is “a law working in our members .… IT IS NOT I THAT DO IT.”

Rom 7:17  Now then it is no more I that do it but SIN THAT DWELLETH IN ME. Rom 7:18  For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but [how] to perform that which is good I find not. Rom 7:19  For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.
Rom 7:20  Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. Rom 7:21  I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me.

 WHO sustains that law of sin “in our members”?

Jas 4:12  There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy: who art thou that judgest another?

There is “ONE lawgiver”, and it is God, the Father, through Christ and His Christ, who determines all things. Every day of our lives is “written in His Book BEFORE there are any of them”. There are no Scriptures to support free moral agency. We choose only what God CAUSES US TO CHOOSE, and there is nothing “free” about our choices. It cannot be stated any clearer:

Psa 139:16  Thine eyes did see mine unformed substance; And in thy book they were all written, Even the days that were ordained for me, When as yet THERE WAS NONE OF THEM.

Pro 20:24  Man’s goings ARE OF THE LORD; how can a man then understand his own way?

 Jer 10:23  O LORD, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is NOT in man that walketh to direct his steps


Amo 3:6  Shall a trumpet be blown in the city, and the people not be afraid? shall there be evil in a city, and the LORD HATH NOT DONE IT?

Rom 9:16  So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of GOD  THAT SHEWETH MERCY.

More witnesses in the Scriptures about the sovereignty of God:

Pro 16:9 In his heart a man plans his course, but the LORD DETERMINES HIS STEPS.

 Pro 19:21 Many are the plans in a man‘s heart, but it is the LORD’s PURPOSE THAT PREVAILS.

 Isa 55:11 – So is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty but WILL ACCOMPLISH WHAT I DESIRE and ACHIEVE the purpose for which I sent it.

 Paul says he is UNABLE to carry out his will.

Rom 7:15 “For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I AM DOING THE VERY THING I HATE.”

 Rom 7:19 “For the good that I want, I do not do, but I PRACTISE THE VERY EVIL  that I do not want.”

 and another witness

Gal 5:17 “For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you MAY NOT DO THE THINGS THAT YOU PLEASE.”

 Christ HARDENS the heart of Pharaoh (you and me the old man) in Egypt:

Exo 4:21 The LORD said to Moses, “When you return to Egypt, see that you perform before Pharaoh all the wonders I have given you the power to do. But I WILL HARDEN his heart so that he will not let the people go.

 Exo 10:20 But the LORD HARDENED Pharaoh’s heart, and he would not let the Israelites go.

 We are BEING granted repentance from our sins:

 2Ti 2:24-26 And the Lord’s servant must not quarrel; instead, he must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. 25Those who oppose him he must gently instruct, in the hope that GOD WILL GRANT them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth, 26 and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will.

 Christ was predestined and so are we, those He called:

Rom 8:29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. Rom 8:30 And those he PREDESTINED, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.

 The Pharisees clearly displayed that they WERE UNABLE to repent (“turn”), because God has blinded them and so it is for us today.

John 12: 39-41 39 For this reason they could not believe, because, as Isaiah says elsewhere: 40 “HE HAS BLINDED THEIR EYES and deadened their hearts, so they can neither see with their eyes, nor understand with their hearts, nor turn and I would heal them.”

 Peter did NOT desire to deny Jesus, yet he did.

Luk 22:34 Jesus answered, “I tell you, Peter, before the rooster crows today, YOU WILL deny three times that you know me.”

 Paul at first tries to destroy Christians of his day. God transformed his heart with great ease. Saul (Paul) changed his mind quickly.

Act 9:4  And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? Act 9:5  And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks. Act 9:6  And he trembling and astonished said, LORD, WHAT WILT THOU HAVE ME TO DO ? And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do. 

 Prophecy contradicts free will. God, the Father, through Christ, declares what He will do AHEAD OF TIME of time, then DOES IT.

Ezekiel 36:26 I WILL give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.

Isa 14:24 [A Prophecy Against Assyria ] The LORD Almighty has sworn, “Surely, as I HAVE PLANNED, SO IT WILL BE, and as I HAVE PURPOSED, SO IT WILL STAND.

Isa 14:27 For the LORD Almighty has purposed, and WHO CAN THWART HIM? His hand is stretched out, and WHO can turn it back

 Our hearts are being controlled, we do not choose the condition of our hearts. Pharaoh, king of Egypt, has NO choice in this OT witness.

Exo 9:16-17 But I HAVE RAISED YOU UP for this very purpose, that I might show you my power and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth. 17 You still set yourself against my people and will not let them go.

NO ONE can resist Christ and His purpose. Man’s will does not matter.

Isa 46:10 I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come. I say: My purpose will stand, and I WILL DO ALL THAT I PLEASE.

 God, the Father carries out all of His desires THROUGH Christ and His Christ.

Isa 46:11 From the east I summon a bird of prey; from a far- off land, a man to fulfil my purpose. What I have said, THAT WILL I BRING ABOUT; WHAT I HAVE PLANNED, THAT, that WILL I DO.

 Joh 6:44  “NO ONE CAN COME to me unless the Father who sent me draws[Greek: basically, should be translated ‘drags’] him, and I will raise him up at the last day.

 No one can come to God and Christ unless THEY make him.

“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that [‘that faith’] not of yourselves [NOT of your own faith or will] it is the GIFT of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are HIS workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God has before ordained that we should walk in them” (Eph. 2:8-10).

 Salvation is a GIFT, not dependent on man’s will or work.  


“For it is God [ who? ‘GOD’] who works in you both TO WILL and TO DO of His good pleasure” (Phil. 2:13).  

 “Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son CAN DO NOTHING OF HIMSELF, but what He sees the Father do: for what things so ever He does, these also does the Son likewise” (Joh 5:19)

 In Daniel chapter 4 we are told “… that the living may know that the Most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomever HE WILLS, and setteth up over it the basest [lowest in morals] of men” (Dan. 4:17, 25, 26 & 32).

Christ told His disciples:

Joh 15:16 YE DID NOT CHOOSE ME, BUT I CHOSE YOU, and appointed you, that ye should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should abide: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.

The question remains, WHERE IS FREE WILL IN ALL OF THIS?

Isa 45:5 I am the LORD, and there is none else, there is no God beside me: I girded thee, though thou hast not known me [where is anything about man’s fabled ‘free’ will in these verses?]:

Isa 45:6 That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me. I am the LORD, and there is none else  [Where is this ‘free’ will?].

Isa 45:7 I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD DO ALL THESE THINGS.

 Last Word

If we claim to be Christians, we stand on the WRITTEN WORD of God. We are at first drawn away by the idols of our hearts and our own imaginings because Christ tells us that He is the One DECEIVING us.

2Th 2:9  Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, 2Th 2:10  And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. 2Th 2:11  And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: 2Th 2:12  That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness. 

 Mat 24:11  And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.

As true worshippers, we worship in Spirit and Truth (John 6:63). Getting past the LIE of free will is essential to come to see the truth of the promise of the salvation of ALL MEN. When the myth of free will is destroyed, then the Lord’s purpose in using evil to bring about good becomes clear and many false doctrines are instantly consumed in the fire that is the truth (Gen 50:20, Rom 8:28, Ecc 1:13 CLV). The will of God, the sanctification of all men (1Th 4:3), is being accomplished on schedule.

1Co 15:22  For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. 1Co 15:23  But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming.

Yet carnal minds are not being able to believe this unless our eyes are opened.

Rom 11:7  What then? Israel hath not obtained that which he seeketh for; but the election hath obtained it, and the rest were blinded. Rom 11:8  (According as it is written, God hath given them the spirit of slumber, eyes that they should not see, and ears that they should not hear;) unto this day.

These truths and the plan of SALVATION of all are foolishness to the natural man (1 Co 2:7).

1Co 2:14  But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

 Truth is found only in the SUM OF THE WORD (Psa 119:160) and applying Peter’s warning here about making doctrines out of one verse.

2Pe 1:20 (CLV) knowing this first, that no prophecy of scripture at all is becoming its own explanation.

 The Bible instructs us to choose the right way and to obey the Lord. YET, we are also told that our choosing righteousness is not of ourselves. It is the Lord’s WORK IN EACH OF US and in the times, He has ordained.

Rom 9:16 So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.

 The faith we are given is a measure of faith.  Not all get the same and this, too, is the Lord’s work that we learn in respecting where the LORD HAS EVERY MAN IN HIS AWESOME HANDS.

Rom 12:3  For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.

 A final example to consider: WHO was responsible for the death of Christ. Was it the Jews? No, we are told by Christ that the Jews was not given to understand WHO HE WAS, nor to understand the mysteries of the Kingdom of God (Mat 13:11-16). Therefore, while hanging on the cross, Christ admitted: “they know not what they do” (Luk 23:34).

Was JUDAS responsible for the death of Christ? Judas could never have carried through if Satan himself had not been sent to “enter… into Judas”

Luk 22:3  Then entered Satan into Judas surnamed Iscariot, being of the number of the twelve. 

Christ told Judas “that thou do, do quickly” (Joh 13:27). Christ in no way discouraged Judas.

Peter tells us who really was responsible for the death of Christ. The whole world is blinded to this:

Act 2:22  Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know: 

Act 2:23  Him, being delivered by the DETERMINATE COUNSEL AND FOREKNOWLEDGE OF GOD, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain: 

Act 2:24  Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it. 

Did the other disciples see it this way? Here, they agree with one accord:

Act 4:23  And being let go, they went to their own company, and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said unto them. 

Act 4:24  And when they heard that, they lifted up their voice to God with one accord, and said, Lord, thou art God, which hast made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all that in them is: 

Act 4:25  Who by the mouth of thy servant David hast said, Why did the heathen rage, and the people imagine vain things? 

Act 4:26  The kings of the earth stood up, and the rulers were gathered together against the Lord, and against his Christ. 

Act 4:27  For of a truth against thy holy child Jesus, whom thou hast anointed, both Herod, and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles, and the people of Israel, were gathered together, 

Act 4:28  FOR TO DO WHATSOEVER  THY HAND AND THY COUNSEL DETERMINED BEFORE TO BE DONE

 Will Judas or the Jews BE CAUSED to give an ACCOUNTING of their deeds? Yes, they will give an account for their deeds even though they are NOT RESPONSIBLE “that upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth…” (Mat 23:35). Will the Gentiles be caused to give an account of their evil deeds? Certainly: “the wages of sin is death…” (Rom 6:23).

Coming to see that man’s will is in no way shape or form free of God’s will is ESSENTIAL to see the truth.  Filtering Scriptures through the delusion of man have such free will is a sure fire way to remain in darkness. The truth will always remain the same: “HE WORKETH ALL THINGS AFTER THE COUNSEL OF HIS OWN WILL”

Sincere questions and comments are always welcome.  You can also email Pete or Ronel directly at peterjwilson56@gmail.com.

Studies

Adversaries of an Apostate Solomon

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Kings of Israel #1

“Adversaries of an Apostate Solomon”

Key Verses:  1 Kings Chapter 11

I am introducing a new study series that will review the lives and experiences of each of the various kings of Israel beginning with the demise of Solomon and division of Israel into two kingdoms.  Lord willing, the series will cover these events in Kings and Chronicles that continue until the Assyrian (Northern Kingdom) and Babylonian (Southern Kingdom) captivity.  These history lessons begin to take on a much greater importance as they help give purpose to our trials and the process of salvation as we are being saved (matured) little by little.

1Pe 1:10  Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you:

1Pe 1:11  Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.

1Pe 1:12  Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into.

When these events are read with spiritual eyes (Joh 6:63, 1Co 3:21), we grow to understand and apply these stories rightfully so as to our lives.  That is because God’s Elect are the true Israel of God, circumcised inwardly by the finger of God (Col 2:11, Rom 2:28-29) and who are the focus and actual subject of all Scriptures.  All men, beginning with the Israel of God are living by every word (Mat 4:4).  Every King of Judah and Israel is speaking of our lives and spiritual experiences.  There are some good kings and many more bad kings, all of which fell short of the righteousness (Mat 5:20) that is needed to enter the Kingdom of God.  But through our successes and failures as these kings of Israel, we are Lord willing, making progress towards the goal of being humbled.

Ecc 1:13 I applied my heart to inquiring and exploring by wisdom concerning all that is done under the heavens: it is an experience of evil Elohim has given to the sons of humanity to humble them by it.

1Pe 5:6  Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:

The physical stories are just the shadow of the greater spiritual truth and work the Potter is performing in preparing for Himself a Temple where He is reigning.

Act 7:47  But Solomon built him an house.

Act 7:48  Howbeit the most High dwelleth not in temples made with hands; as saith the prophet,

Act 7:49  Heaven is my throne, and earth is my footstool: what house will ye build me? saith the Lord: or what is the place of my rest?

Oneness with Christ is the end outcome, the Lord moves us there by first dividing us.  It’s the same way as Christ bringing peace to the land by bringing a sword and a war in heaven.

Luk 12:51  Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division:

The Lord takes credit for the division of Israel reading ahead in His response to Judah that wanted to go to war with their revolting brethren.

1Ki 12:24  Thus saith the LORD, Ye shall not go up, nor fight against your brethren the children of Israel: return every man to his house; for this thing (the division) is from me

The division of Israel (you and me) has a declared end and a purpose which is bringing us into unity of faith (Heaven/doctrines and earth/deeds) with the Lord.  The second coming of Christ brings Israel (us) back together.

Eph 2:14  For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us;

Eph 2:15  Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace; 

Eph 2:16  And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity (the carnal mind) thereby:

The division of Israel is just as certain as is the reunification of Israel in God’s plan for every man.  In the same way the Lord works in dark parables, new life comes only by death and oneness in Israel only comes about by first being divided.  It is the Greek AORIST tense process (an ongoing that is, was and will be) that is living out the lives of the kings that is part of all things written being ours (1Co 3:21).  Two wooden sticks within us will be made one as the Elect are raised up with Christ and Israel will no longer being defiled with idols.

Eze 37:19  Say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will take the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel his fellows, and will put them with him, even with the stick of Judah, and make them one stick, and they shall be one in mine hand. 

Eze 37:20  And the sticks whereon thou writest shall be in thine hand before their eyes.

Eze 37:21  And say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will take the children of Israel from among the heathen, whither they be gone, and will gather them on every side, and bring them into their own land:

Eze 37:22  And I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel; and one king shall be king to them all: and they shall be no more two nations, neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at all:

Leaving Our First Love

The Lord divides the kingdom within us when we, as Solomon, leave our first love and stop striving to obey the Lord.

1Jn 5:3  For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.

Joh 14:15  If ye love me, keep my commandments.

Solomon falls away despite being given all the gifts and great wisdom and spiritual truths.

1Ki 11:1  But king Solomon loved many strange women, together with the daughter of Pharaoh, women of the Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Zidonians, and Hittites; 

1Ki 11:4  For it came to pass, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned away his heart after other gods: and his heart was not perfect with the LORD his God, as was the heart of David his father. 

1Ki 11:6  And Solomon did evil in the sight of the LORD, and went not fully after the LORD, as did David his father. 

We will see ourselves as Solomon and all these rebellious kings when our day has come.

2Th 2:3  Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;

2Th 2:4  Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.

Our disobedience is all ordained of the Lord to give Him the occasion to bring the grace that is saving us.

Isa 1:2  Hear, O heavens, and give ear, O earth: for the LORD hath spoken, I have nourished and brought up children, and they have rebelled against me. 

Heb 12:6  For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.

The Lord raises up “adversaries” to Solomon, through the process of teaching us and destroying our lives of disobedience and idolatry.

1Ki 11:9  And the LORD was angry with Solomon, because his heart was turned from the LORD God of Israel, which had appeared unto him twice,

Our flesh cannot help but do evil continually and that is what each of these three adversaries do in bringing about the division and the doom of Solomon’s kingdom.  The Lord has already appeared to Solomon twice (came the second time to us for salvation in type).  The fire and baptism have come in type and shadow as the rulership of Israel begins to change.  The first adversary is Hadad.

1Ki 11:14  And the LORD stirred up an adversary [H7854] unto Solomon, Hadad the Edomite: he was of the king’s seed in Edom. 

Flesh is the seed of the serpent which is at enmity with the ways of the Lord.  The word for adversary used here is H7854 the word “Satan”.

H7854, śâṭân

Total KJV Occurrences: 27

satan, 19

adversary, 6   Num_22:22, 1Ki_5:4 (2), 1Ki_11:14, 1Ki_11:23, 1Ki_11:25

adversaries, 1

withstand, 1

Adversaries are needed for us to learn to walk by faith and fight the good fight.  Satan and his offspring are a purposeful tool of the Lord to test, vex and oppress the children of Israel and ultimately destroy the first vessel of clay.

Job 26:13  By his spirit he hath garnished the heavens; his hand hath formed the crooked serpent. 

Satan is used to destroy the first Israel in the flesh which is the house of Solomon who rebelled and did not keep the Lord’s commandments.

Isa 54:16  Behold, I have created the smith (and his messengers and offspring) that bloweth the coals in the fire, and that bringeth forth an instrument for his work; and I have created the waster to destroy. 

Mar 3:26  And if Satan rise up against himself (his own offspring), and be divided, he cannot stand, but hath an end.

Job, like Solomon, was a wise man who did many good things, yet when the time came to expose idolatry and self-worship, the Lord removes the hedge and uses His chosen instruments to bring about the destruction of Job’s and Solomon’s life.

Job 1:6  Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan [H7854] came also among them.

Job 1:7  And the LORD said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.

Job 1:8  And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?

Job 1:12  And the LORD said unto Satan, Behold, all that he hath is in thy power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand. So Satan went forth from the presence of the LORD.

The name Hadad is first introduced as a son of Ishmael (1Ch 1:30) and represents an inward enemy of God from our rejected flesh that cannot be heir with Christ.  Edomites are descendants of Esau symbolizing the firstborn man of flesh that cannot inherit the Kingdom of God (1Co 15:50).  This other nation is always present in our members (Esau vs Jacob – Gen 25) to be used by the Lord to bring division, war and chastening.  The promise of dominion over sin will be given to all men, the apostate Solomon and even Cain who murdered Abel.

Gen 4:7  If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him. 

Males in Scripture represent doctrines and beliefs.  Hadad represents the carnal mindset of our father, the devil, that is always at enmity with the Lord (Gen 3:15).  King David has killed all the males of Edom earlier however Hadad and a few others escaped to be used later of the Lord to try us and vex us in the later days of king Solomon and his apostasy.

1Ki 11:15  For it came to pass, when David was in Edom, and Joab the captain of the host was gone up to bury the slain, after he had smitten every male in Edom; 

1Ki 11:16  (For six months did Joab remain there with all Israel, until he had cut off every male in Edom:) 

1Ki 11:17  That Hadad fled, he and certain Edomites of his father’s servants with him, to go into Egypt; Hadad being yet a little child. 

1Ki 11:18  And they arose out of Midian, and came to Paran: and they took men with them out of Paran, and they came to Egypt, unto Pharaoh king of Egypt; which gave him an house, and appointed him victuals, and gave him land. 

The Hadad in us always finds a welcome mat in Egypt which is a type and symbol for the world and our worldliness.  Having just completed a mini-series on Gideon, it is timely to see that it was in Midian, a spiritual place of strife and contention, that Hadad and the escaped Edomites (seed of the serpent) arose and found a welcoming environment in Egypt.

Joh 15:19  If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.

Jas 4:4  Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.

Hadad and the Edomites take men with them that are out of Paran [H6290].  Paran means ornamental [H6286] or applying it means to glory (outwardly).  That is exactly what Satan has us doing in disguising our old man and worldliness as an angel of light.

2Co 11:12  But what I do, that I will do, that I may cut off occasion from them which desire occasion; that wherein they glory, they may be found even as we.

2Co 11:13  For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ.

2Co 11:14  And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.

Further evidence of Hadad’s spirit and purpose is found in details of his wife and son.

1Ki 11:19  And Hadad found great favour in the sight of Pharaoh, so that he gave him to wife the sister of his own wife, the sister of Tahpenes the queen. 

1Ki 11:20  And the sister of Tahpenes bare him Genubath his son, whom Tahpenes weaned in Pharaoh’s house: and Genubath was in Pharaoh’s household among the sons of Pharaoh. 

The son born to Hadad is named Genubath [H1592]which means thief.  Genubath like all carnal thinking is the offspring of their father the devil (Joh 8:44) who will not bring life but death .

Joh 10:10  The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

The entire world and all flesh have a mindset that is in bed with their father the devil.

1Jn 5:19  And we know that we are of God, and the whole world lieth in wickedness.

We are not given the specific adversarial escapades between Hadad and Solomon, but we are told Hadad worked much evil (mischief) in the land of Israel as another adversary Rezon is introduced.

1Ki 11:23  And God stirred him up another adversary, Rezon the son of Eliadah, which fled from his lord Hadadezer king of Zobah: 

1Ki 11:24  And he gathered men unto him, and became captain over a band, when David slew them of Zobah: and they went to Damascus, and dwelt therein, and reigned in Damascus. 

1Ki 11:25  And he was an adversary to Israel all the days of Solomon, beside the mischief that Hadad did: and he abhorred Israel, and reigned over Syria. 

The KJV translators use of mischief to describe what Hadad and Rezon were doing in the Kingdom of God waters down the significance of fleshly enemies operating Israel.  A better translation has them “doing evil” as mischief comes from the Hebrew word “ra” Strong’s number H7451 that is much more appropriately translated as evil.  This is another witness to the Lord being the responsible party for Solomon’s apostasy and the resulting judgment and further deterioration of a divided Israel.

Isa 45:7  I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things. 

Rezon is not the Rezin of Isaiah 17 yet both were kings of Syria that typify our own flesh from which we are separated from and dragged to Christ (Deu 26:5, etc.).  Syria symbolizes Rezon who is our man of sin.  The name Rezon means prince and is another symbol for the mindset of our father the devil that we are overcoming as we overcome our disobedience.

Eph 2:2  Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:

Zobah is always mentioned in the Bible in the context of war (against the flesh) in view.  Like with the Edomites and Hadad, Saul had previously subdued temporarily the fleshly nations of Israel including the kings of Zobah.

1Sa 14:47  So Saul took the kingdom over Israel, and fought against all his enemies on every side, against Moab, and against the children of Ammon, and against Edom, and against the kings of Zobah, and against the Philistines: and whithersoever he turned himself, he vexed them.

Rezon becomes the ruler of Syria camping out in Damascus.  Damascus is said to mean the red land by some secular experts although our E-Sword tools give no indication.  Israel within us is being oppressed when we return to Damascus.  Doing such is go backwards into to our former lusts and wallowing in the mixed multitude mud of spirit (water) and flesh (dust).

2Pe 2:22  NLT They prove the truth of this proverb: “A dog returns to its vomit.” And another says, “A washed pig returns to the mud.”

Having Rezon and Hadad instigating evil within Israel is a story of Solomon and us in our great apostasy being turned over to Satan for the destruction of our flesh so our spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord to come.

1Co 5:4  In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when ye are gathered together, and my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ,

1Co 5:5  To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

A third adversary which does evil in the land and comes against Solomon is from Israel. Our enemies being of our own household has both a physical and a spiritual application as do all the words of the Lord.  This is the first time we see Jeroboam, who will soon become the first king over the divided Northern Kingdom and who goes on to live in Bible infamy as the one king that causes Israel to sin long after his physical death.

1Ki 11:26  And Jeroboam the son of Nebat, an Ephrathite of Zereda, Solomon’s servant, whose mother’s name was Zeruah, a widow woman, even he lifted up his hand against the king. 

1Ki 11:27  And this was the cause that he lifted up his hand against the king: Solomon built Millo, and repaired the breaches of the city of David his father. 

1Ki 11:28  And the man Jeroboam was a mighty man of valour: and Solomon seeing the young man that he was industrious, he made him ruler over all the charge of the house of Joseph. 

Of course, our days of being an adversary to the true Israel within and without ourselves is all the Lord’s work that is, was and will be used for good in the end (Rom 8:28).

Jer 10:23  O LORD, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps.

Pro 21:1  The king’s heart is in the hand of the LORD, as the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will.

Jeroboam means “the people will contend”.  This king within ourselves defines our struggle against ourselves and contending with our natural idolatrous and beastly state (Ecc 3:18) that seeks preeminence in the congregation.  It is telling to know that a “jeroboam”, our modern word, defines an oversized wine bottle holding four times the normal volume of wine.  The heart of a Jeroboam spirit is our being corrupted by our conquests of valor and the industrious nature the Lord gives us and then thinking it is of ourselves.  We cannot reign outside or apart the Body of Christ.

1Co 4:7  For who maketh thee to differ from another? and what hast thou that thou didst not receive? now if thou didst receive it, why dost thou glory, as if thou hadst not received it?

1Co 4:8  Now ye are full, now ye are rich, ye have reigned as kings without us: and I would to God ye did reign, that we also might reign with you.

When addressing the Kings of Israel, we will see often the mention of the father and the mother and even the home town.  These are not idle words and are giving us added spiritual significance to what we are being told about king that is, was and will be ruling the kingdom of God within us (Israel).

Is a Son of Nebat: No other mention of Nebat in Scripture outside distinguishing this Jeroboam from the one that would follow.

His Mother is Zeruah:  The meaning of his mother’s name is appropriately leprous widow.  This is the mindset that gives birth to our prideful man of sin who seeks worldly gain.

Comes from Zereda: Jeroboam is from Zereda which comes from a root word meaning to pierce or puncture.  Our beastly natures even the religious one (Rev 13:11) has us piercing our Lord and killing Christ before we are given to see we are the abomination of desolation standing in the Holy Place.  We will come to see our evil in the day of the Lord and see that we have pierced Christ while masquerading as an angel of light.

Rev 1:7  Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen.

Jeroboam the son of Nebat, is best known as the King that continues to cause Israel to sin.  His sin is our sin and the sin of every man born who will make himself idols of heart and worship the image of his own beast and call that a god (Rev 13:11-14).  Once exalted by the Lord and given rulership, Jeroboam is more concerned about losing followers than navigating the narrow way of the Lord’s commandments.

1Ki 12:26  And Jeroboam said in his heart, Now shall the kingdom return to the house of David:

1Ki 12:27  If this people go up to do sacrifice in the house of the LORD at Jerusalem, then shall the heart of this people turn again unto their lord, even unto Rehoboam king of Judah, and they shall kill me, and go again to Rehoboam king of Judah.

1Ki 12:28  Whereupon the king took counsel, and made two calves of gold, and said unto them, It is too much for you to go up to Jerusalem: behold thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt.

1Ki 12:29  And he set the one in Bethel, and the other put he in Dan.

1Ki 12:30  And this thing became a sin: for the people went to worship before the one, even unto Dan.

This sin stays with Israel (us) for successive kings and emerging mindsets even as we gain more experience thru trials.  We find this language 14 times by my count in 1 and 2Kings.

2Ki 15:18  And he (future king) did that which was evil in the sight of the LORD: he departed not all his days from the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin.

The sins of Jeroboam, our first idolatry and self-worship stays with Israel and ultimately leads to the Assyrian captivity many years later (2Ki 17:22-23).  It takes the entire process of our fiery judgment on the old man to cleanse Israel once and for all of our SELF-centeredness.

We will continue next study with the conflict between Solomon’s heir Rehoboam and Jeroboam as the nation of Israel is henceforth divided and each King begins to rule in their respective kingdoms of Judah (Southern Kingdom) and Israel (Northern Kingdom).

Sincere comments are always welcome.  You can also email me any thoughts or questions to peterjwilson56@gmail.com

Studies

Learning by Examining Ourselves

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For Our Admonition Part 21

“Learning by Examining Ourselves”

Key Verses:  Jdg 8:18 – 8:28

This series of studies in the life of Gideon is reminding us that entering into the Kingdom of God is a process of many wars and fiery experiences which are teaching us the right ways of God.  We pick up the story with Gideon holding the captured Midianite kings that were found in a spiritual location where SELF was being exalted and promoted (Nobah and Jogbehah) and where our man of sin was dwelling securely (Jdg 8:11).  A discussion between Gideon and the kings takes place ending with their death.

Jdg 8:18  Then said he unto Zebah and Zalmunna, What manner of men were they whom ye slew at Tabor? And they answered, As thou art, so were they; each one resembled the children of a king. 

Jdg 8:19  And he said, They were my brethren, even the sons of my mother: as the LORD liveth, if ye had saved them alive, I would not slay you. 

Jdg 8:20  And he said unto Jether his firstborn, Up, and slay them. But the youth drew not his sword: for he feared, because he was yet a youth. 

Jdg 8:21  Then Zebah and Zalmunna said, Rise thou, and fall upon us: for as the man is, so is his strength. And Gideon arose, and slew Zebah and Zalmunna, and took away the ornaments that were on their camels’ necks. 

 This outward event happened for our sake (1Pe 1:12) to show us the benefits of examining ourselves.  The Lord has purposefully ordained our erring and rebellion, represented by these two kings to bring the grace and chastening that is saving us in our day of the Lord (Pro 16:4, Rom 8:20).  We fall down our “seven” times as we are learning righteousness and are shown our error and are chastened of the Lord (Heb 12:8).

Pro 24:16  For a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again: but the wicked shall fall into mischief.

Our old man is manifest in the mindset of these two kings and is an enemy of God.  In our day of the Lord, we are meeting the enemy and he is us (Mat 10:36)!  We will confront our these kings in our day of judgment and Lord willing will learn of the damage they are causing and adapt our walk and ways or spiritual warfare.  After a victory or conquest, it is natural to relax and let one’s guard down but that is exactly the opportunity the adversary is looking for to hit a soft unprepared target.  We must never forget that our carnal mind is always at enmity with the ways of the Lord.

Rom 8:6  For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.

Rom 8:7  Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.

We are admonished constantly in Scripture to be vigilant in keeping watch and examining ourselves to keep us spiritually healthy.

2Co 13:5  Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?

We will see in the end, Gideon falling down and not being wise just after the Midianites are finished.  All of those “take heed” admonishments are given to warn us about issues within ourselves and not just about those outside ourselves.  If we see these things within, we just might have a Midianite king to be hiding out in our heavens.

Mat 16:6  Then Jesus said unto them, Take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.

Mar 4:24  And he said unto them, Take heed what ye hear: with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you: and unto you that hear shall more be given.

Luk 11:35  Take heed therefore that the light which is in thee be not darkness.

1Ti 4:16  Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee.

Learning from our enemies is examining ourselves and our motives and past actions.  That is the lesson from Gideon’s questioning of the Midianite kings.  Gideon asks the kings what kind of men (where they were spiritually) were the men these kings slew when they killed the men of Israel at a placed called Tabor.  We are not given the details of the event being referenced but we can learn more by digging in the Scriptures (Pro 25:2).

Tabor [H8396] comes from a root “tebor” H8406 that means broken or fragile.  Tabor spiritually speaking is where we are made to see our true broken nature and how we have done horrible things in the Name of the Lord.  Christ comes to the brokenhearted (Luk 4:18) and breaks open the fountains of life deep inside of our flesh (Gen 7:11).  When we are drained of self then we can be lifted up and given the land with power.

Mat 5:5  Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.

These carnal kings within us slay Christ and His Christ as we mix carnal strife and contention with the Truth.  We come to see that we are the Pharisee that has slain Christ and killed His prophets.

1Th 2:14  For ye, brethren, became followers of the churches of God which in Judaea are in Christ Jesus: for ye also have suffered like things of your own countrymen, even as they have of the Jews:

1Th 2:15  Who both killed the Lord Jesus, and their own prophets, and have persecuted us; and they please not God, and are contrary to all men:

Tabor is symbolically between the temple and the altar.  It is where babes, the immature dwell, still engaging in two trains of thought – the carnal mind and the ways of the Spirit. It is here in Tabor that we kill Christ and His prophets with our hatred for the commands and ways of the Lord.

Mat 23:34  Wherefore, behold, I send unto you prophets, and wise men, and scribes: and some of them ye shall kill and crucify; and some of them shall ye scourge in your synagogues, and persecute them from city to city:

Mat 23:35  That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of Zacharias son of Barachias, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar.

An OT witness to us doing spiritual violence and turning back to carnal wisdom are these.

Eze 8:16  And he brought me into the inner court of the LORD’S house, and, behold, at the door of the temple of the LORD, between the porch and the altar, were about five and twenty men, with their backs toward the temple of the LORD, and their faces toward the east; and they worshipped the sun toward the east.

Eze 8:17  Then he said unto me, Hast thou seen this, O son of man? Is it a light thing to the house of Judah that they commit the abominations which they commit here? for they have filled the land with violence, and have returned to provoke me to anger: and, lo, they put the branch to their nose.

Facing eastward away from the direction the sun (temple) is a symbol of immaturity and our being yet carnal.  Yet that is where we all are at when we first come into the Truth while we await the day of the Lord that is going to suddenly come and burn of the Midianites with fire.  As babes in Christ, we are broken and very fragile and are easily seduced by the carnal darkness that masquerades as light and its ministers as angels of light.

2Co 11:3  But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.

2Co 11:4  For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him

Looking behind ourselves in our day of judgment, we are being humbled in seeing how we have opposed the Lord and His work within ourselves and the work of others.  This good work is bringing us to repentance and turning our hearts back to God.  Thus, we are given a zeal like our Lord to cleanse the Temple (Joh 2:19, 1Co 3:16) and put to death these Midianite kings.  These OT shadows speak of this NT spiritual reality (Joh 6:63).

Exo 21:12  He that smiteth a man, so that he die, shall be surely put to death.

Hos 5:1  Hear ye this, O priests; and hearken, ye house of Israel; and give ye ear, O house of the king; for judgment is toward you, because ye have been a snare on Mizpah, and a net spread upon Tabor.

There is something for each of us to focus on as there is always work to be done in the Kingdom of God while we walk in clay.  When we see false doctrines and carnal unbelief in our heavens we are to spare not and show no mercy to these inward enemies but to put them to death.  This extends to our thought life as well as our deeds.  We are not to suffer the woman Jezebel (another shadow of carnality) who is causing us to commit fornication against the Lord and His Christ.

Deu 20:16  But of the cities of these people, which the LORD thy God doth give thee for an inheritance, thou shalt save alive nothing that breatheth:

Deu 20:18  That they teach you not to do after all their abominations, which they have done unto their gods; so should ye sin against the LORD your God.

1Co 11:29  For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body.

1Co 11:30  For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.

We are given further detail that our firstborn mindset, representing the flesh and our yet carnal nature is unable to rise up and slay these kings.

Jdg 8:20  And he said unto Jether his firstborn, Up, and slay them. But the youth drew not his sword: for he feared, because he was yet a youth.

Gideon’s firstborn son Jether, comes from a word by the same name [H3499] that means remnant or residue, speaking of the part of us that is cut off and unable to enter into the Kingdom of God (Gal 4:30).  Being a youth (also Hebrew word for child), he was spiritually immature and not yet given to overcome the Midianites.  Such is the definition of a babe in Christ.

1Co 3:1  And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ.

1Co 3:2  I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able. 

Being the firstborn of Gideon is also a symbol for our flesh and the old man who is the rejected anointed and was not designed to inherit the Kingdom of God.

1Co 15:46  Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual.

1Co 15:47  The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven.

Gideon and all of us are to work out our own salvation. We have to bear our own burden (Gal 6:5) and provide for ourselves (1Ti 5:8) if we are to eat the spiritual nourishment and grow.  While we have a body of Christ to strengthen and encourage and teach us, we still have to tend and keep the garden of Eden in the Kingdom of God within us (Gen 2:15).

Jdg 8:21  Then Zebah and Zalmunna said, Rise thou, and fall upon us: for as the man is, so is his strength. And Gideon arose, and slew Zebah and Zalmunna, and took away the ornaments that were on their camels’ necks. 

Our carnal mind does not want to die but there comes a time when the trumpet judgments are blowing, the fiery trials are tormenting us when we do seek the death of our old man and the Midianite spirits.

Rev 9:6  And in those days shall men seek death, and shall not find it; and shall desire to die, and death shall flee from them.

The old man will die along with these carnal kings but only when the Lord has ordained us to overcome.  These kings are the root of a mixed multitude, emotionally driven mindset that is hindering and oppressing Israel in the promised land.  We learn later in verse 8:26 that the kings wore purple raiment symbolizing the mixture of flesh (red, “adam”) with the things of the Spirit (blue).  Yet there is only one master and we either hate Christ or the Midianite kings.  Like Gideon, we are all made willing to lay down the flesh and kill the false prophets we have followed only by looking behind ourselves and seeing the miracles in our own life.  Elijah brought this outward miracle to Israel and thus the liars and false prophets were then taken and killed.

1Ki 18:39  And when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces: and they said, The LORD, he is the God; the LORD, he is the God.

1Ki 18:40  And Elijah said unto them, Take the prophets of Baal; let not one of them escape. And they took them: and Elijah brought them down to the brook Kishon, and slew them there.

Removing the round ornaments on the camel necks symbolizes removing the yoke and bondage to our beastly (camel like) natural state.  Cutting off these ornaments is ridding ourselves of carnal thoughts that have us going up and down reasoning and justifying what seems right to our beastly nature.  This is the epitome of the law for the lawless and self-righteousness that those in Christ are overcoming by judgment.

Rom 2:14  For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves:

Rom 2:15  Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;

The word for ornament is H7720 “saharon” comes from a root meaning round and is also translated as round tire in its one other use in Scripture.  These round tires or round ornaments symbolize (Hos 12:10) the lies and distractions of the great harlot, all 200 million of them (Rev 9:16) that keep us focused on fleshly things and not the commandments of the Lord.  There is spiritual freedom in Christ and the Law of faith, yet the Midianite spirits will keep us bound in unbelief.

Gal 5:1  Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage

The Lord is always testing and trying our faith.  Immediately after the slaying of the kings, Gideon becomes the object of angel worship.

Jdg 8:22  Then the men of Israel said unto Gideon, Rule thou over us, both thou, and thy son, and thy son’s son also: for thou hast delivered us from the hand of Midian. 

Jdg 8:23  And Gideon said unto them, I will not rule over you, neither shall my son rule over you: the LORD shall rule over you. 

Flesh loves to give credit and glory to flesh. We see several examples of this in the new testament involving Paul (Act 14:12), Peter with Cornelius (Act 10:25) and most memorably with the angel in the Book of Revelation who showed John Truth.  The carnal mind wants to bow down to the Lord’s angels (messengers) that bring us into the Truth and who are more mature than us and have been given much overcoming and dominion over their flesh.   The rest of Israel who had witnessed Gideon’s conquest in slaying the two kings were quick to hand dominion and rulership over to a mere man.  God’s people are to not to do this nor receive such adulation that is solely the purview of the Lord.

Rev 22:8  And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which shewed me these things.

Rev 22:9  Then saith he unto me, See thou do it not: for I am thy fellow servant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book: worship God.

Our answer Lord willing will be the same as the messenger who helped John in his overcoming.  Gideon gives the mature answer in turning them back to the Lord and His rulership over all things in heaven and on the earth.

Isa 42:8  I am the LORD: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images

The Lord and His Christ hate the spirit of the Nicolaitans that has one lording over another having any dominion over their faith (Rev 2:14-15).  I personally came into this fellowship and it was demanded that I bow down to the man who had shown me such truths.  If any of us ever find us in that situation, know it is not the way of the Lord and such brother or sister is in grievous error and needs strong rebuke and correction.

2Co 1:24  Not for that we have dominion over your faith, but are helpers of your joy: for by faith ye stand.

But Gideon had not arrived yet and would soon fall down again in pursuing idolatry.

Jdg 8:24  And Gideon said unto them, I would desire a request of you, that ye would give me every man the earrings of his prey. (For they had golden earrings, because they were Ishmaelites.) 

Jdg 8:25  And they answered, We will willingly give them. And they spread a garment, and did cast therein every man the earrings of his prey. 

Jdg 8:26  And the weight of the golden earrings that he requested was a thousand and seven hundred shekels of gold; beside ornaments, and collars, and purple raiment that was on the kings of Midian, and beside the chains that were about their camels’ necks. 

Jdg 8:27  And Gideon made an ephod thereof, and put it in his city, even in Ophrah: and all Israel went thither a whoring after it: which thing became a snare unto Gideon, and to his house. 

Jdg 8:28  Thus was Midian subdued before the children of Israel, so that they lifted up their heads no more. And the country was in quietness forty years in the days of Gideon. 

The story of Gideon is our story (1Co 3:21).  It is a story of abiding in the fire as it begins to work its work within the Kingdom of God within us.  Gideon is a story about failures and unbelief as much as it is of conquests and victories.  The “mighty man of valor” which Gideon was called upon his initial visitation was no such thing at that time.  Yet this is the way the Lord operates declaring the end from the very beginning (Isa 46:10) and speaking of things that are not as though they already are (Rom 4:17).  Knowledge and successful conquests will puff us up and the Lord will cause us to err from His ways (Isa 63:17) to bring more grace.

Deu 5:8  Thou shalt not make thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the waters beneath the earth:

Deu 17:17  Neither shall he multiply wives for himself, lest his heart turn away; nor shall he greatly multiply silver and gold for himself.

Gideon asks and receives the spoils of war from the men of Israel collecting all these valuables in order to make an ephod.  An ephod was a specially made garment or robe for the priests of Israel as is described in detail in Exodus 28.

Exo 28:4  And these are the garments which they shall make: a breastplate, an ephod, a robe, a skillfully woven tunic, a turban, and a sash. So they shall make holy garments for Aaron your brother and his sons, that he may minister to Me as priest.

Of course, the true ephod is the armor of God (faith) and the garments of salvation (fiery trials) that are given to us by Christ and intricately woven as we endure in the age-abiding fire of judgment (Isa 33:14-15, Rev 3:18).

Golden earrings in the positive symbolize our God-given gift of ears to hear the Word of God (Eze 16:12) which is how we are able to love (obey) God.  In the negative they represent us taking God’s gifts and using them for our own purposes and in establishing our own outward righteousness.  Which is exactly what we do in Spiritual Babylon as we merchandise in the things of God and go after the way of Balaam, Korah and Cain using our outward works to justify ourselves.  There is another famous story of Israel misusing golden earrings in making themselves idols in their impatience in waiting on the Lord and in this case Moses to return from the mount.

Exo 32:3  And all the people brake off the golden earrings which were in their ears, and brought them unto Aaron.

Exo 32:4  And he received them at their hand, and fashioned it with a graving tool, after he had made it a molten calf: and they said, These be thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt.

Gideon’s ephod was a phony covering of self-righteousness that is the carnal mind’s way of exalting itself and running ahead of the Lord in His process of maturing us.  This man-made ephod is very alluring because it looks so beautiful and righteous.

Rev 18:16  And saying, Alas, alas, that great city, that was clothed in fine linen, and purple, and scarlet, and decked with gold, and precious stones, and pearls!

Rev 18:17  For in one hour so great riches is come to nought. And every shipmaster, and all the company in ships, and sailors, and as many as trade by sea, stood afar off,

Gideon’s ephod is a molten image of our own beast made with the best our flesh has to offer.  The weight (judgment) of the gold was one thousand and seven hundred shekels representing the perfection of flesh, the process of judgment (10 x 10 x 10) and the completion of that judgment (seven).  Gideon’s nor anyone’s flesh can inherit the Kingdom of God (1Co 15:50) and instead must be destroyed for us to enter.  Thus, more experiences and more judges bringing judgment on the land are needed.

The story of Gideon has taught us the virtue of patience and believing the promises of the Lord despite what we see in the physical and what our own failures will have us believe.  Our growing into the mature man includes us living through the experiences of Gideon.  We will go from fearful to bold and each step the Lord uses for good in teaching us anew and giving Him plenty of opportunities to apply the grace that is, was and will be saving us.

Heb 12:5  And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him:

Heb 12:6  For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.

The story of Gideon is not done.  Judges continues with Gideon’s concubine son Abimelech, being put into judgeship and there is a quick backsliding to Baal.  Such is our story and our walk as it seems 3 steps forward and 2 backwards at times, yet we are getting there little by little.

Php 3:12  Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus.

Php 3:13  Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before,

Php 3:14  I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.

Questions and comments are always welcome.  You can also email me directly at peterjwilson56@gmail.com