Articles

Knowing No Man After the Flesh

Knowing No Man After the Flesh

All mankind whether in the faith or not makes many judgments every single day.  We do this every time we respond, think and act to the various stimuli (all things) the Lord is working in our lives.  Decision making is judgment making and the Lord is working all of it, even declaring to us our very thoughts (Amo 4:13) even giving us the words we speak (Pro 16:1).  That is just how powerful our sovereign Lord truly is that the world and all in unbelief know not.

Isa 64:8  But now, O LORD, thou art our father; we are the clay, and thou our potter; and we all are the work of thy hand. 

 Php 2:13  For it is God [it is NOT YOU] which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure. 

It those few given to know these truths, by coming through the fire that our first learning to trust in the Lord.  Once the Lord starts this work in us, we grow in our understanding that the Lord is working all things and has predestinated our entire lives (Psa 139:16) declaring the end from the very beginning (Isa 46:10).

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: 

The title of this study comes from this well-known Scripture that tells of the complete paradigm shift those of the household of faith are to exhibit in conducting ourselves in these clay vessels.

2Co 5:16  Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we him no more. 

What does “know no man or Christ after the flesh” really mean from a spiritual and practical significance?  We hope to explore the answer more thoroughly in this article.

The very next verse helps zero in on what knowing no man after the flesh is all about. Those that “know no man after the flesh” are those in Christ (in the true faith in the His Body of true believers) that are striving to be like the Lord and following His example.

2Co 5:17  Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. 

The precious few given the Spirit of Christ and dragged to His Body (Joh 6:44) are those given the gift, a measure of Christ’s faith, and who are now walking differently as compared to their former selves and the entire carnal world.

Rom 8:1  There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. 

Rom 8:2  For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. 

We don’t even know ourselves anymore in the flesh when we walk as the new man. Faith has us no longer condemning ourselves for the things the Lord has wrought in our life.

The short answer of what it means to “know no man after the flesh” is to walk by faith and not by sight (using our carnal physical senses).

Rom 1:17  For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith. 

2Co 5:7  For we walk by faith, not by sight [physical/carnal senses]

Simply put, those “being justified “ (saved, delivered, judged, etc) by the process; are doing it BY FAITH.

Rom 5:1  Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:

With the root of faith established, we thereby grow through the many trials the Lord brings that is continuing to teach us how to see things from God’s eyes.

Col 2:6  As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him,

Col 2:7  rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught [in and by judgment – Isa 26:9], abounding in it with thanksgiving.

God is not a respecter of people

Contrary to many trapped by the letter and not seeing the Spirit in all Scripture, the Lord is not a respecter of personsAll men are viewed the same and given the same judgments and the same rewards, there is NO DIFFERENCE except the timing of when we seek Him.

Rom 10:12 For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. 

The punishments and the reward, the entire process is ONE process that comes alike to all men (Ecc 9:2) in the times appointed.

Col 3:24  Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ. 

Col 3:25  But he that doeth wrong [we all do wrong before we are taught and caused to do right] shall receive for the wrong which he hath done: and there is no respect of persons. 

Rom 2:9  Tribulation and anguish, upon every soul of man that doeth evil, of the Jew first, and also of the Gentile; 

Rom 2:10  But glory, honour, and peace, to every man that worketh good, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile: 

Rom 2:11  For there is no respect of persons with God. 

The Lord is no hypocrite.  Our commands are to do what He does and follow His example in how we are to judge all things.  Here is what He does.

Joh 8:15  Ye judge after the flesh; I judge no man. 

Joh 8:16  And yet if I judge, my judgment is true: for I am not alone, but I and the Father that sent me. 

How to do we make these judgments every day to the many stimuli in our lives yet follow Christ and judge no man?  We do it by walking by faith according to the Word rather than the wisdom and logic of the carnal world.  Judging by the Spirit is how it can be said we judge no man and even that we “know no man after the flesh”.  The Word of God is what judges every man but even that only in the appointed times, the last days, the end of the carnal age for every man.

Joh 12:47  And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world. 

Joh 12:48  He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day. 

We judge each another today by the words of fire we speak, share and meditate on.  But we ourselves are judged not by a man but by the living Word, Christ in us and spoken by His Body. This is how the fire spreads among us and will, in turn, spread to all mankind in the “will be” fulfillment of the Lake of Fire.  This is how we attain the mind of Christ being raised from the spiritually dead [the carnally minded].

1Co 2:15  But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man. 

1Co 2:16  For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ. 

It is Christ, the living Word within us that is doing the judging.  It is the authority of Christ within us, the Word, which we are to follow in conducting ourselves and judging righteous judgment rather than judging in the flesh.

Joh 7:24  Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment.

With regarding to knowing men and how we are to make those judgments; we are to judge the fruit and the Spirit in the man rather than their appearances.

1Sa 16:7  But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart. 

Far too often we are impatient and judge hastily based on appearances, [in the flesh] having respect of persons which is contrary to the commands of the Lord in the Old Testament.  The Lord changes not!

 Lev 19:15  Ye shall do no unrighteousness in judgment: thou shalt not respect the person of the poor, nor honour the person of the mighty: but in righteousness shalt thou judge thy neighbour

Pro 24:23  These things also belong to the wise. It is not good to have respect of persons in judgment. 

Also in the Old Testament, Scriptures about balances and weights refer to much more than our just our honesty in handling money [spiritual knowledge is also money or riches].  These OT symbols on measures ultimately speak to our faithfulness to the Lord and how we judge all matters of life (1Co 6:3).

Diversity in our judgment, playing favorites or being partial is using diverse weights and measures. That is what a carnal mind does in justifying things in the flesh.

Pro 20:10 Divers weights, and divers measures, both of them are an abomination to the LORD.

It is the mature man of Christ who has learned to measure all things by the Word of God which is how we can discern good from evil.

Heb 5:14 But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.

James calls out the church (you and me) who in our immaturity continue to show respect of persons, knowing men after the flesh.

Jas 2:1  (NKJV) My brethren, do not hold the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with partiality [respect of persons]

Whatever is not of faith is sin and including our having respect of persons and judging according to the flesh.  James continues to give a seeming outward physical example yet remember “my words are spirit” and all of these words are signified.

Jas 2:2  (NKJV) For if there should come into your assembly a man with gold rings, in fine apparel, and there should also come in a poor man in filthy clothes, 

Jas 2:3  and you pay attention to the one wearing the fine clothes and say to him, “You sit here in a good place,” and say to the poor man, “You stand there,” or, “Sit here at my footstool,” 

Jas 2:4  have you not shown partiality among yourselves, and become judges [of men in the flesh] with evil thoughts? …..

Jas 2:8  If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, “YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF,” you do well; 

Jas 2:9  but if you show partiality, you commit sin, and are convicted by the law as transgressors. 

Knowing men after the flesh is judging men in the flesh and is contrary to faith.  This puts us right back under the law for the lawless and in bondage to the carnal mind and its accusing and or excusing thoughts (Rom 2:14-15) about men.

Every Man is Jesus Christ

Knowing no man after the flesh includes us coming to see that EVERY MAN is Jesus Christ who is both the first adam and the last adam in every man.

1Co 15:45  And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. 

Rev 22:13  I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last. 

With the mind of Christ, we are able to look at every man and see them as Jesus Christ.  It is coming to see and live this truth that defines our maturity.

Mat 25:40  And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’ 

Judging in the flesh has us knowing men in the flesh rather than the Spirit.  We no longer know Christ in the flesh and now we begin to see Him in every man regardless of where anyone may be in the faith or the road to maturity.

Gen 1:27  So God created [is creating] man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. 

Knowing that Christ is every man and that men are truly clay in His hands, we will look at some natural behaviors and reactions of our flesh, so we can be on guard within ourselves and within the brethren to help one another.

Favorites:  We need to be aware the Lord will use our preferences for people to try our faith and to teach us righteousness showing us the partiality that lies hidden in our hearts.  Having such preferences itself is not sin, it is only when we apply a different plumbline and let those carnal desires interfere with being Christ UNIFORMLY to all men.

1Ti 5:21  I charge thee before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, and the elect angels, that thou observe these things without preferring one before another, doing nothing by partiality

In the end, all will be in Christ and in Christ we are told ….

Gal 3:26  For ye are all the children of God by [the free gift of] faith in Christ Jesus. 

Gal 3:27  For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 

Gal 3:28  There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. 

The Body of Christ (All men in the end) comes from all nations, tribes and tongues there being no respect of any person, creed, race or nation by the Lord.

Rev 7:9  After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands;

Deu 10:17  For the LORD your God is God of gods, and Lord of lords, a great God, a mighty, and a terrible, which regardeth not persons, nor taketh reward: 

Preeminence:  The Lord shares His glory with no flesh and we are told often to be on guard the spirit of preeminence.  This is the same as a Nicolaitan spirit which is also a homosexual spirit where one man has dominion over another.  Being like our Lord will have us hating this Spirit any place we see it.

Rev 2:6  But this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate. 

We all battle this spirit within ourselves and we have seen it in others who seek adulation from men even do many good works and using that for carnal gain.

Mat 23:5  But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments, 

Mat 23:6  And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues, 

Mat 23:7  And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi.

The Lord has established offices in the Body of Christ (Eph 4:11-12) for the edification of the church who bring only what the Lord has given them (1Co 4:7) to bring. Everything is to be done for the Lord’s glory in all things.

Col 1:18  And he [the Lord] is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence. 

Angel Worship:  Carnal minds naturally are drawn to give thanks and praise to those who bring favor to them.  It is right to give thanks and acknowledgment to those the Lord uses to bless us.  Yet we are denying the sovereign Lord when we go to far and bow before men who have done for us what was their reasonable service.  Twice we have the example of John being rebuked for bowing before his fellow servant who revealed the mysteries of Christ.

Rev 19:10  And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy. 

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 fellowservant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book: worship God

Recipients of such worship love their brother or sister and put them right turning the praise and worship back to God.  To Him alone goes all praise and glory and honor.

Rev 4:9  And when those beasts give glory and honour and thanks to him that sat on the throne, who liveth for ever and ever, 

Rev 4:10  The four and twenty elders fall down before him that sat on the throne, and worship him that liveth for ever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying, 

Rev 4:11  Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created. 

We are going to be tried over and over again by the Lord to burn all partiality in judgment from our heavens and earth.  We are getting to the place where we only say or do what we see our Lord doing.  That is the mature man in Christ who lives by faith and is obedient to the commandments.

Joh 5:19  Then Jesus answered and said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He sees the Father do; for whatever He does, the Son [you and me Lord willing] also does in like manner. 

Studies

Jeroboam Causes Israel to Sin

Kings of Israel #5

“Jeroboam Causes Israel to Sin”

Key Verses: 1Ki 12:25-33

Our old man will make us sin if he is not brought under the subjection of Jesus Christ within us.  That is such a simple yet powerful truth and one our story of King Jeroboam will bear out today and, in the weeks ahead as we begin studying the kingship of Jeroboam, the first king over the Northern Kingdom in a divided nation of Israel.   We should always be reminded that the kingdom of God is not outside of us somewhere but instead is within you (Luk 17:21) as are all of these events that God’s Elect are living out.   Jeroboam represents our naturally rebellious and contentious flesh that wars against the doctrines of Christ (Judah).

Before the division of Israel, Jeroboam was a servant of Solomon (1Ki 11:26) meaning Solomon had dominion over his carnal mind and fleshly lusts.  Yet Solomon apostatized, and Israel reaped (and we reap what we have sowed).

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,

1Ki 11:11  Wherefore the LORD said unto Solomon, Forasmuch as this is done of thee, and thou hast not kept my covenant and my statutes, which I have commanded thee, I will surely rend the kingdom from thee, and will give it to thy servant.

The result of our apostasy is our becoming servants of the old man which consumes us in carnal and lustful passions.

Joh 8:34 Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin.

As God’s Elect, we will live through a divided Kingdom fighting wars as our flesh (Israel) wages war against the Word (Judah).  These wars will continue until we are given the fullness when we receive our spiritual bodies.

1Ki 14:30  And there was war between Rehoboam and Jeroboam all their days.

Gal 5:17  For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.

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.

Rebellious flesh is naturally SELF-serving and always seeking to enlarge its borders and make a name for itself.  Out from the dominion of Christ’s doctrines, it does not take long for us to begin worshipping our own gods and perverting judgment.  Jeroboam went right to work doing what flesh does best in using his own hands in building idols and strongholds to expand and protect his kingdom and kingship.

1Ki 12:25  Then Jeroboam built Shechem in mount Ephraim, and dwelt therein; and went out from thence, and built Penuel. 

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

1Ki 12:27  If these 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 (Jeroboam) 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. 

1Ki 12:31  And he made a house of high places and made priests of the lowest of the people, which were not of the sons of Levi. 

1Ki 12:32  And Jeroboam ordained a feast in the eighth month, on the fifteenth day of the month, like unto the feast that is in Judah, and he offered upon the altar. So did he in Bethel, sacrificing unto the calves that he had made: and he placed in Bethel the priests of the high places which he had made. 

1Ki 12:33  So he offered upon the altar which he had made in Bethel the fifteenth day of the eighth month, even in the month which he had devised of his own heart; and ordained a feast unto the children of Israel: and he offered upon the altar, and burnt incense. 

Jeroboam’s focus instantly turned to retain power and control.  It is the opposite of faith when we fear men and do not trust the Lord nor submit to Him working all things in our life.  The laws of warfare are written about our war against our own flesh and lusts that wage war against the ways of God in our hearts and mind.

Deu 20:4  For the LORD your God is he that goeth with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.

Rom 8:2  For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.

Jeroboam, as our old man, is made to be destroyed and will resist dying and submitting every step of the way.

Rom 13:2  Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.

1Co 1:18  For the preaching of the cross (dying to self) is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.

While these Scriptures say Jeroboam did these things after the “devising of his own heart”, we know that truth is subject to a much greater absolute truth which is this.

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

Pro 16:9  A man’s heart deviseth his way: but the LORD directeth his steps.

It is the Lord who is doing all the causing, even causing Jeroboam and us in our day to commit these besetting sins (Isa 63:17).

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

Jeroboam life and actions are innate to all flesh.  His deeds live on in Bible infamy being cited at least 21 times and in 15 of the 18 successor Northern Kingdom kings here being just one example.

2Ki 13:6  Nevertheless they [Israel during Jehoahaz’s reign] did not depart from the sins of the house of Jeroboam, who had made [is making] Israel sin, but walked in them; and the wooden image also remained in Samaria.

The life of Jeroboam and his evil deeds are an example of our evil deeds and have been written down for us to learn from and help in our process of overcoming.

1Co 10:11  Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world come.

It is impossible for flesh to please God (Rom 8:8) and the Jeroboam spirit will continue to plague Israel all the days in our flesh.  The sins of Jeroboam are our sins that we all are struggling with until we are matured in our judgment and trials.  Now we look some more into what is called “the sins of Jeroboam” for wisdom in identifying these sins and finding ways to overcome them.

Worshipping a false god and creating graven images:  Jeroboam quickly sins against the Lord in violating both the first and second commandments (and others).

Deu 5:6  I am the LORD thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.

Deu 5:7  Thou shalt have none other gods before me.

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:

Our flesh will seek to share the glory with the Lord but He is having none of it (1Co 1:29).  Jeroboam will soon be rebuked by a prophet speaking words of fire and his kingdom will not be long-lasting as the next study will cover.

These besetting (persistent) sins are ingrained in all flesh and lead to other sins against the Lord’s commandments.  The old man aka man of sin, cannot subject himself to the ordinances of God and will persistently create a god unto himself until that man of sin is destroyed. Only then will Israel be reunited as One with God.

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.

2Th 2:7  For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way.

2Th 2:8  And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:

Jeroboam was a friend of Egypt’s King Shishak (1Ki 11) and these false gods are given birth from our spiritual fornication and adultery with the mindset and ways of this wicked world.  The new man within us cannot commit this sin. If we see this within ourselves we can know it is a manifestation of our old man who is to be reckoned dead instead.

1Jn 5:18  We know that whoever is born of God does not sin; but he who has been born of God keeps himself, and the wicked one does not touch him.

1Jn 5:19  We know that we are of God, and the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one.

1Jn 5:20  And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us an understanding, that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life.

Calves are nearly full grown cows and in Scripture signify a sacrificed life being laid down in service to the Lord which is the reasonable divine service of God’s people (Rom 12:1).  Jeroboam like all flesh is SELF FOCUSED whose thought life is about preserving his life and kingdom.  This is what leads us to worship our own ideas and self-exaltation (our god, the image to our beast)

Rev 13:11  And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon.

Rev 13:12  And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed.

Thankfully, we know our beastly nature will be destroyed and our attempts to preserve the way of the old man will come to naught in due time.  Believe these words of the Lord!

Luk 17:33  Whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whosoever shall lose his life shall preserve it.

Isa 42:17  They shall be turned back, they shall be greatly ashamed, that trust in graven images, that say to the molten images, Ye are our gods.

The history of Jeroboam also tells us where he placed these golden calves in Israel.

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. 

Jeroboam wanted dominion over Israel and their exercise of faith which we are commanded not to have over anyone (Rom 14:4, 2Co 1:20).  His plot to keep his subject from going to Jerusalem including placing these two idols in two strategic locations.  Bethel, meaning House of God refers to our worship and was in the southernmost part of Israel.  Dan which means “judge”, is in the far north which is the spiritual direction from which judgment always comes.  How we worship and how we judge are both essential and we have many Scriptures and studies that reveal to us how to worship in truth and how to judge righteously.  If we are in the flesh as is the mind of Jeroboam here is the result.

Rom 8:8  So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.

Before Christ comes we are worshipping a false god and making a graven image in our self-absorbed delusion that we are in control of our own free will.  Such is the STRONG DELUSION that all men are given which causes us to reject the true love of God as we persist in unrighteous behavior.

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:

Continuing with Jeroboam’s action in prescribing worship for Israel we read this.

1Ki 12:31  And he made an house of high places, and made priests of the lowest of the people, which were not of the sons of Levi. 

1Ki 12:32  And Jeroboam ordained a feast in the eighth month, on the fifteenth day of the month, like unto the feast that is in Judah, and he offered upon the altar. So did he in Bethel, sacrificing unto the calves that he had made: and he placed in Bethel the priests of the high places which he had made. 

1Ki 12:33  So he offered upon the altar which he had made in Bethel the fifteenth day of the eighth month, even in the month which he had devised of his own heart; and ordained a feast unto the children of Israel: and he offered upon the altar, and burnt incense. 

While we are not told specifically with whom Jeroboam took counsel with to devise the worship plan for Israel, we do know he was an ally of Shishak the King of Egypt (1Ki 11:40) which tells us Jeroboam is a friend of the world as Egypt symbolizes the world.  We also know there were no longer any true priests left in Israel.

2Ch 11:14  For the Levites left their suburbs and their possession, and came to Judah and Jerusalem: for Jeroboam and his sons had cast them off from executing the priest’s office unto the LORD:

Jeroboam kicks out the true priests and replaces them with idolatrous priests not of the tribe of Levi as commanded of the Lord (Num 3:1-6).  Without the priests to be the multitude of counselors, there is no safety (Pro 11:14) and our old man can easily lead us astray and corrupt the pure food and service at the Lord’s table.

Heb 13:16  (JUB) Do not forget to do good and to fellowship (communicate KJV); for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.

1Co 10:21  Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: ye cannot be partakers of the Lord’s table, and of the table of devils.

This act of our old man is another besetting sin that will keep us from worshipping in truth and being saved from our sins.      We are saved from our sins as we are able to walk in the light that is the Body of Christ (Mat 5:14) who are also the kings and priests of the Lord in the making (Rev 5:10).  The light of Christ is also the same as the fire that is saving us and burning up the false images of God we make as carnal men.

1Jn 1:7  But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.

Jer 5:14  Wherefore thus saith the LORD God of hosts, Because ye speak this word, behold, I will make my words in thy mouth fire, and this people wood, and it shall devour them.

We have many Scriptures in the Old and New Testaments warning us about whom we keep company with and with whom we eat and digest spiritual food. We are to be watchful for those that have not the Truth nor obey the Truth and not be partakers with them.

2Jn 1:9  Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.

2Jn 1:10  If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed:

2Jn 1:11  For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.

On the same vein, we are not to idly bring strange priests and those teaching false doctrines into our fellowship and communion.

Heb 13:9  Be not carried about with divers and strange doctrines. For it is a good thing that the heart be established with grace; not with meats, which have not profited them that have been occupied therein.

Heb 13:10  We have an altar, whereof they have no right to eat which serve the tabernacle.

Jeroboam in our exalted strong delusion thinks he is doing God a service by ordaining a feast that appears to closely mimic the Feast of Tabernacles (15th day of 7th month).  This was no doubt done to further the motive in preventing Israel from going up to Jerusalem as the Law of Moses commanded.

Exo 23:14  Three times thou shalt keep a feast unto me in the year.

Exo 23:17  Three times in the year all thy males shall appear before the Lord GOD (in Jerusalem)

Our old man is much more comfortable being isolated from the fiery fire and bright light that is exposing our deeds of darkness in the house of God where judgment now dwells.  Forsaking the assembly and merely warming ourselves by the fire is not enough to burn out our besetting sins. We need to be directly in the fire.

Isa 33:14  The sinners in Zion are afraid; fearfulness hath surprised the hypocrites. Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire? who among us shall dwell with everlasting burnings?

Isa 33:15  He that walketh righteously, and speaketh uprightly; he that despiseth the gain of oppressions, that shaketh his hands from holding of bribes, that stoppeth his ears from hearing of blood, and shutteth his eyes from seeing evil;

The taking of the true communion often in Jerusalem (a type of New Jerusalem, aka the Body of Christ) is how we die daily and Christ grows within us.

1Co 11:26  For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death till He comes.

But like orthodox Christianity and carnal men everywhere, Jeroboam is taking the things of God and perverting them; adding too and taking away from the Word; even making up holy days on his own devising.  The three feasts of the Lord in the Old Testament are all shadows of the Lord savings us by the process of judgment (the number three).  The Elect live this out in Spirit now, in our day of the Lord, and all mankind will fulfill those feast days in the Lake of Fire.

The false gods, the perverted priesthood and even the man-made feast days are all an abomination to the Lord and only invite the Lord’s wrath to destroy Jeroboam.

Amo 5:21  I hate, I despise your feast days, and I will not smell in your solemn assemblies.

Amo 5:22  Though ye offer me burnt offerings and your meat offerings, I will not accept them: neither will I regard the peace offerings of your fat beasts.

Outwardly there is to be no keeping of days, times or seasons.  It takes judgment to come to be able to approach the Lord in truth and in spirit.  Before then we will be serving up false gods with our keeping of days, times and years as the world does.

Gal 4:8  Howbeit then, when ye knew not God, ye did service unto them which by nature are no gods.

Gal 4:9  But now, after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements, whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage?

Gal 4:10  Ye observe days, and months, and times, and years.

The Lord is getting our obedience (LOVE) by destroying the Jeroboam mindset that keeps us separated from our brethren and the true doctrines of Christ.

Luk 6:46  And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?

Mat 22:36  Master, which is the great commandment in the law?

Mat 22:37  Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love (obey is love – 1Jo 5:3) the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.

As we look at the remaining 18 kings of the Northern Kingdom, Jeroboam always seems to be in the picture (2Ki 17:22-23).  That is true because it is these besetting deeply ingrained sins that only our overcome as we are able to lay down our life in service and humility.

Gal 2:20  I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.

In the next study, we will continue with Jeroboam’s reign as a man of God is sent to rebuke the disobedient king and prophesy of the impending doom and rejection of his idolatrous worship.

1Ki 13:1  And, behold, there came a man of God out of Judah by the word of the LORD unto Bethel: and Jeroboam stood by the altar to burn incense.

1Ki 13:2  And he cried against the altar in the word of the LORD, and said, O altar, altar, thus saith the LORD; Behold, a child shall be born unto the house of David, Josiah by name; and upon thee shall he offer the priests of the high places that burn incense upon thee, and men’s bones shall be burnt upon thee.

1Ki 13:3  And he gave a sign the same day, saying, This is the sign which the LORD hath spoken; Behold, the altar shall be rent, and the ashes that are upon it shall be poured out.

 

 

Studies

Enemies Left in the Promised Land

For Our Admonition #11

“Enemies Left in the Promised Land”

Key Verses:  Judges Chapter 2 and Jdg 3:1 – 3:11

In this study, we take our first but not last entry into the Book of Judges. This Book in the letter is a chronological history of Israel’s early days in the promised land.  Even a “Babylonian” website nails the physical history lesson in their summation of the Book of Judges.

The book of Judges describes a cycle that repeated itself multiple times during the reign of the judges. Because the Israelites failed to remove wicked influences from the promised land, they became entangled in sin and were conquered and afflicted by their enemies. After the Israelites cried unto the Lord for help, He sent judges to deliver them from their enemies. However, they soon returned to their sins, and the cycle repeated.

They are blind to the fact that these verses were written down by the prophets of old to minister and teach us, the true Israel of God.  Those stories happened to teach us the things we need to know about the Lord’s work in the kingdom of God.

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.

These events in Judges show the continued cycle of Israel falling away into evil, crying out to the Lord and then being saved out of those troubles.  Such is the ongoing cycle of many tribulations (Act 14:22) by which the true Israel (the Body of Christ) is being saved in this age.  Before we get to the specific story in Judges of the first appointed judge, let’s review some foundational truths about what these events portray in the kingdom of God.

The Promised Land

The land of Canaan in Scripture represents the promised land.  The land promise to Israel is the land within us that represents the Kingdom of God.  This is where Christ appears in the hearts and minds of His Chosen people to take back the kingdom for the Lord.  (Luk 17:20-21).  While the land is given to Israel (us) as a possession, the land must be overcome and be cleansed of the heathen nations and giants (besetting sins) that occupy it.  In Genesis the land promise is described as including the territories occupied by ten nations.  It only awaits the times appointed the Lord for this to be fulfilled.

Gen 15:18  In the same day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates:

Gen 15:19  The Kenites, and the Kenizzites, and the Kadmonites,

Gen 15:20  And the Hittites, and the Perizzites, and the Rephaims,

Gen 15:21  And the Amorites, and the Canaanites, and the Girgashites, and the Jebusites.

All ten of these people/nations are types for our flesh (and associated false doctrines) that are naturally at enmity with our new man and the ways of the Lord.   The land of Canaan will be humbled, it will bow the knee to Jesus Christ in the appointed time. The root word for Canaan [H3667] is Strong’s H3665 which very clearly shows the Lord’s masterpiece in declaring the end of all things from the very beginning (Isa 46:10).

H3665, kâna‛

kaw-nah’

A primitive root; properly to bend the knee; hence to humiliate, vanquish: – bring down (low), into subjection, under, humble (self), subdue.

Canaan is the son of Ham and was cursed by the Lord for Ham’s disobedience (Gen 9:25).  This all part of the Lord’s plan to save all mankind by remaking in its entirety the marred vessels of clay (Jer 18:4, Rev 21:5).  The first man Adam, his mindset and fleshly body was not designed to inherit the kingdom of God nor can it.  The Lord is changing the true Israel now in this age by bringing judgment upon the house of God.

1Co 15:50  Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.

1Co 15:51  Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,

The law of Moses gave us a shadow of the true law of faith.  But the principles work the same.  With obedience comes blessings and more power is given to us.  With disobedience, come curses and wrath and we are given over to our enemies to turn our hearts back to the Lord.

Blessing:  Deu 28:7 The LORD shall cause thine enemies that revolt against thee to be smitten before thy face: they shall come out against thee one way and flee before thee seven ways.

Curse:  Deu 28:48  And thou shalt serve thine enemies, which the Lord will send forth against thee, in hunger, and in thirst, and in nakedness, and in the want of all things; and thou shalt wear upon thy neck a yoke of iron until he shall have destroyed thee.

This land promised is traced back to Canaan’s lineage which is spiritually synonymous with the land of the Philistines (Palestine) that is always at war with Israel.   Yet it will be possessed by the Lord’s shepherd’s and flocks and sin will be ruled over in due time.

Zep 2:5  Woe unto the inhabitants of the sea coast, the nation of the Cherethites! the word of the LORD is against you; O Canaan, the land of the Philistines, I will even destroy thee, that there shall be no inhabitant.

Zep 2:6  And the sea coast shall be dwellings and cottages for shepherds, and folds for flocks.

Our walk of maturity is taking over this land little by little as the Lord gives us the victory.

Num 34:2  Command the children of Israel, and say unto them, When ye come into the land of Canaan; (this is the land that shall fall unto you for an inheritance, even the land of Canaan with the coasts thereof:)

Salvation is a process of being saved and overcoming our enemies.  The Canaanite nations that occupy the promised land is our own flesh and the lusts thereof (1Jo 2:16).  These are the enemies of Israel whom we are overcoming and fighting every day of our life in these flesh bodies.  This land is being possessed slowly but surely in our day of the Lord which is the judgment now on the House of the Lord (1Pe 4:17).   It is an often-repeated theme that the Lord purposefully leaves the enemies (our own flesh) to later try and prove our faith.

Jdg 1:28  And it came to pass, when Israel was strong, that they put the Canaanites to tribute, and did not utterly drive them out. 

The Canaanites paying tribute to Israel illustrates the partial victory and partial dominion we have over our flesh when young and immature and doing battle in the promised land.  The Lord has plans for our enemies will use them to teach us righteousness by bringing trials and chastening.  Look at just some of the failures of the tribes of Israel in overcoming the enemies.

Jdg 1:29  Neither did Ephraim drive out the Canaanites that dwelt in Gezer; but the Canaanites dwelt in Gezer among them.

Jdg 1:30  Neither did Zebulun drive out the inhabitants of Kitron, nor the inhabitants of Nahalol; but the Canaanites dwelt among them, and became tributaries.

Jdg 1:31  Neither did Asher drive out the inhabitants of Accho, nor the inhabitants of Zidon, nor of Ahlab, nor of Achzib, nor of Helbah, nor of Aphik, nor of Rehob:

Jdg 1:32  But the Asherites dwelt among the Canaanites, the inhabitants of the land: for they did not drive them out.

There is indeed a method to the Lord’s strange ways and all of it is being used for our good (Rom 8:28, 2Co 4:15).

Mat 10:34  Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.

Mat 10:36  And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household (think within) 

The fact is our flesh and deep-rooted beastly nature will always be with us. We must always stay vigilant in the fight of faith and never think we have arrived and put our guard down.

Jos 15:63  As for the Jebusites the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the children of Judah could not drive them out: but the Jebusites dwell with the children of Judah at Jerusalem unto this day. 

Rev 17:8  The beast that thou sawest was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition: and they that dwell on the earth shall wonder, whose names were not written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, when they behold the beast that was, and is not, and yet is.

Another new testament witness of this same “always on” battle with flesh are these verses.

Gal 5:16  This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.

Gal 5:17  For the flesh (Canaanites) lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.

The Lord uses our enemies to ensnare us in bondage, so our hearts and minds will look to Him only (repent) for all things beginning with our deliverance. This methodology is a good work and wonderful work of the Lord to the children of men in destroying our false peace (1Th 5:3) and exposing our being at ease in Zion as we walk out our faith (Amo 6:1).  We reap what we sow and that applies to our disobedience and evil deeds.

Jdg 2:13  And they (Israel, you and me) forsook the LORD, and served Baal and Ashtaroth.

Jdg 2:14  And the anger of the LORD was hot against Israel, and he delivered them into the hands of spoilers that spoiled them, and he sold them into the hands of their enemies round about, so that they could not any longer stand before their enemies.

Jdg 2:15  Whithersoever they went out, the hand of the LORD was against them for evil, as the LORD had said, and as the LORD had sworn unto them: and they were greatly distressed.  (coming to our wits end – Psa 107:27)

Jdg 2:21  I also will not henceforth drive out any from before them of the nations which Joshua left when he died:

Jdg 2:22  That through them I may prove Israel, whether they will keep the way of the LORD to walk therein, as their fathers did keep it, or not.

There is indeed a time and purpose for every season under heaven (Ecc 3:1), even being in captivity to our enemies.  The Lord always works evil for good in the end (Gen 50:20) and that begins by seeing our sin and thereby beginning to know (learn) the right ways.

Jer 2:19  Thine own wickedness shall correct thee, and thy backslidings shall reprove thee: know therefore and see that it is an evil thing and bitter, that thou hast forsaken the LORD thy God, and that my fear is not in thee, saith the Lord GOD of hosts.

Our captivity to our enemies will itself be taken captive as Christ takes His seat on His throne in our hearts (Eph 4:7-8) and we are placed into the Body of Christ (The Judges).  The Book of Judges is symbolizing our being ruled and judged now in the House of God.

1Co 11:31  For if we would judge ourselves, we would not be judged.

1Co 11:32  But when we are judged, we are chastened by the Lord, that we may not be condemned with the world.

We WILL fall, yet we Lord willing will get right back up.  That is the “seven times” pattern of Pro 24:16 that we see in Judges and the early history of Israel in the land.

Jdg 2:16  Nevertheless the LORD raised up judges, which delivered them out of the hand of those that spoiled them.

Jdg 2:17  And yet they would not hearken unto their judges, but they went a whoring after other gods, and bowed themselves unto them: they turned quickly out of the way which their fathers walked in, obeying the commandments of the LORD; but they did not so.

Jdg 2:18  And when the LORD raised them up judges, then the LORD was with the judge, and delivered them out of the hand of their enemies all the days of the judge: for it repented the LORD because of their groanings by reason of them that oppressed them and vexed them.

Jdg 2:19  And it came to pass, when the judge was dead, that they returned, and corrupted themselves more than their fathers, in following other gods to serve them, and to bow down unto them; they ceased not from their own doings, nor from their stubborn way.

When the judge within us is not on the job, we are eating and drinking unworthily.  The result is we sleep and are spiritually dead (1Co 11:29-30).  This is how we are learning diligence, vigilance and even patience by our mistakes that are 100% caused by the Lord (Isa 63:17, Joh 15:5).  We now come to the appointment of the first judge in Israel.

Jdg 3:1  Now these are the nations which the LORD left, to prove Israel by them, even as many of Israel as had not known all the wars of Canaan; 

Jdg 3:2  Only that the generations of the children of Israel might know, to teach them war, at the least such as before knew nothing thereof; 

Jdg 3:3  Namely, five lords of the Philistines, and all the Canaanites, and the Sidonians, and the Hivites that dwelt in mount Lebanon, from mount Baalhermon unto the entering in of Hamath. 

Jdg 3:4  And they were to prove Israel by them, to know whether they would hearken unto the commandments of the LORD, which he commanded their fathers by the hand of Moses. 

Jdg 3:5  And the children of Israel dwelt among the Canaanites, Hittites, and Amorites, and Perizzites, and Hivites, and Jebusites: 

Jdg 3:6  And they took their daughters to be their wives, and gave their daughters to their sons, and served their gods. 

Jdg 3:7  And the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD, and forgat the LORD their God, and served Baalim and the groves. 

Jdg 3:8  Therefore the anger of the LORD was hot against Israel, and he sold them into the hand of Chushanrishathaim king of Mesopotamia: and the children of Israel served Chushanrishathaim eight years. 

Jdg 3:9  And when the children of Israel cried unto the LORD, the LORD raised up a deliverer to the children of Israel, who delivered them, even Othniel the son of Kenaz, Caleb’s younger brother. 

Jdg 3:10  And the Spirit of the LORD came upon him, and he judged Israel, and went out to war: and the LORD delivered Chushanrishathaim king of Mesopotamia into his hand; and his hand prevailed against Chushanrishathaim. 

Jdg 3:11  And the land had rest forty years. And Othniel the son of Kenaz died. 

In type, this appointed judge Othniel is our new man.  This judge is a younger brother (the brethren) of Caleb.  We all learn the truth and the fire spreads from one another and especially those angels of the Lord who have walked before us shown us these things (Rev 19:10).  It is those in the true Body of Christ who are His Elect of God and are the Lord’s angels that show us truth that is judging Spiritual Israel now and all men in the ages to come (1Co 6:2-3).

Mat 19:28  And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

Caleb and Othniel are from the tribe of Judah and Caleb is best remembered in the Scriptures as the only man besides Joshua not afraid to engage the enemies of Israel.

Num 13:30  And Caleb stilled the people before Moses, and said, Let us go up at once, and possess it; for we are well able to overcome it (subdue the land).

Num 13:31  But the men that went up with him said, We be not able to go up against the people; for they are stronger than we.

When the occasion has come to smite our enemies, the Lord raises up a deliverer who is also a judge.  Being delivered is being saved, they are the same thing.  The KJC for the Hebrew word “Yasha” demonstrates this clearly.

H3467, yâsha‛

Total KJV Occurrences: 207

save, 105

saved, 35

saviour, 13

help, 10

delivered, 8

Jdg_2:16, Jdg_2:18, Jdg_3:9, Jdg_3:31, Jdg_8:22, Jdg_10:12, Jdg_12:2-3 (2)

saveth, 7

preserved, 4

deliver, 3

salvation, 3

savest, 3

deliverer, 2      Jdg_3:9, Jdg_3:15

saviours, 2       Neh_9:27, Oba_1:21

The name Othniel means “force for God” and as the offspring of Kenaz [H7073] a word which means to hunt.  Babylon has its hunters in Nimrod (Gen 10) and the true Israel are spiritual hunters in seeking out and destroying the inward enemies of Israel.  Anointed of the Lord, we are sent to make war with our enemies.

Jdg 3:10  And the Spirit of the LORD came upon him, and he judged Israel, and went out to war: and the LORD delivered Chushanrishathaim king of Mesopotamia into his hand; and his hand prevailed against Chushanrishathaim.

Judging Israel and going to war with our enemies are one in the same thing.  It is through judgment and our judging righteously that the land is sanctified and brought into submission.

Isa 59:18  According to their deeds, accordingly he will repay, fury to his adversaries, recompence to his enemies; to the islands he will repay recompence.

Isa 59:19  So shall they fear the name of the LORD from the west, and his glory from the rising of the sun. When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the LORD shall lift up a standard (THE WORD) against him.

There are two men and two witnesses in Scripture and as God’s people we are those men and those witnesses (old and new man).  Our old man of sin is this heathen King of Mesopotamia.  This King links back to Cush, another son of Ham and Canaan’s brother.  This king is a symbol of our idolatry in fornicating with the gods of this world which our flesh naturally loves to do.

Jer 5:30  A wonderful and horrible thing is committed in the land;

Jer 5:31  The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means; and my people love to have it so: and what will ye do in the end thereof?

Our idolatry is wonderful only in the sense it gives the Lord the occasion to bring judgment and pour out the grace and chastening we need. It is horrible because our wicked deeds of the flesh are an abomination to the Lord.  It was not surprising to see the meaning of the name of this king and enemy of Israel.

H3573, kûshan rish‛âthayim

koo-shan’ rish-aw-thah’-yim

Apparently from H3572 and the dual of H7564; Cushan of double wickedness; Cushan-Rishathajim, a Mesopotamian king: – Chushan-rishathayim.

Double wickedness is other side of the two-edged sword that is the double blessing to the new man we receive in due time.  To spoil our old man and expose our decrepit spiritual condition both our heavens (mind) and our earth (deeds, actions) will be made wicked by the Potter to bring us low and to a place where repentance can be granted.

Jas 4:10  Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.

When both our minds and deeds are sold into captivity of King Chushanrishathaim, we are being caused to err from the Lord’s ways and our every step is ordered of the Lord.  The word “good” is not in the Hebrew and original Scripture, it was added by carnal men to support their false doctrine that the Lord is not sovereign over all things.

Psa 37:23  The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his 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.

The fact is we only come to know the Lord in the whirlwind of our judgment.  The Lord leaves the enemies in the land to give Him plenty of opportunities to chasten us and thereby teach us.

Jdg 3:1  Now these are the nations which the LORD left, to prove Israel by them, even as many of Israel as had not known all the wars of Canaan;

Jdg 3:2  Only that the generations of the children of Israel might know, to teach them war, at the least such as before knew nothing thereof;

To learn war, one needs practice and experience.  This is why the enemies are left in the land.  Interesting to note there are FIVE Canaanite/Philistine lords which link these heathen nations never totally removed from the land to the chastening grace of God that is symbolized by the number 5 and its various multiples.

We serve the Mesopotamian King in bondage for eight years. This timeline has great spiritual significance also as we are so blessed to know.  These eight years are the time and experiences needed to be circumcised by the hand of God and have our new man increase to the detriment of the old man (Joh 3:30).   It takes eight days (years) to accomplish the circumcision of Jesus Christ, who we are if we are His people and of His flesh and bones in the Body of Christ (Eph 5:30).

Luk 2:21  And when eight days were accomplished for the circumcising of the child, his name was called JESUS, which was so named of the angel before he was conceived in the womb.

Rev 17:11  And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goeth into perdition.

The Lord is always seeking an occasion to bring what is necessary to save us.  What is necessary is judgment (fire in our heavens and earth) and it is that process that is delivering us.

Isa 1:27  Zion shall be redeemed with judgment, and her converts with righteousness.

1Co 3:15  If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire (the word judging us in the last day Joh 12:48)

When we are caused to sin (Pro 16:9, Amo 3:6) and fornicate with our flesh and the heathen nations (the world); it gives our Father the occasion for judgment and to bring the best teacher of righteousness known to man.  The Lord is seeking His will to bring all men to repentance and that is done by seeking an occasion to pour out grace that is what saves us (Eph 2:8) and teaching us righteousness.

Tit 2:11  For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men,

Tit 2:12  Teaching (chastening) us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;

Isa 26:9  With my soul have I desired thee in the night; yea, with my spirit within me will I seek thee early: for when thy judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness.

Psa 66:3  Say unto God, How terrible art thou in thy works! through the greatness of thy power shall thine enemies submit themselves unto thee.

Psa 66:4  All the earth shall worship thee, and shall sing unto thee; they shall sing to thy name. Selah.

It is by our learning thru our suffering under these cruel inward heathen kings that obedience comes to the land and the enemies are brought into submission.

Exo 23:22  But if thou shalt indeed obey his voice, and do all that I speak; then I will be an enemy unto thine enemies, and an adversary unto thine adversaries.

Heb 5:8  Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; 

To mature more judgment and more trials are ALWAYS needed and exactly what the Lord dials up for each of us (1Pe 4:13, Heb 5:14).

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.

Our many failures in driving out the Canaanites is used to humble us and remove all confidence in our flesh.  Only then are can we be justified by faith alone and then we are being circumcised by the hands of God alone (Col 2:11).

Php 3:3  For we are the circumcision, which worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh. 

Exo 23:30  By little and little I will drive them out from before thee, until thou be increased, and inherit the land.

After the victory by Othniel, the land has rest for forty years.  We know this rest at this stage of our walk is only temporary as the very verses makes clear.

Jdg 3:12  And the children of Israel did evil again in the sight of the LORD: and the LORD strengthened Eglon the king of Moab against Israel, because they had done evil in the sight of the LORD.

We must endure to the end to be saved as we are being saved now via the process.  We have more things to learn always about righteousness.  The Lord gives us times of trials, but He also gives us times of relative peace and prosperity to consolidate our learning.

Joh 16:12  I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now.

Our flesh is being ruled by a rod of Iron but has not yet been totally destroyed and will rise up again to confront and defy the Israel of God.  The IS, WAS and WILL BE nature of the Word applies to this ongoing battle and cycle of warfare with our flesh.  We are living out Judges (Mat 3:11) now as the Lord has raised up Judges via The Christ and The Word that lives in us.  The Lord via His Word is always winnowing down the old man to bring forth the new man.  There is always something more to be discovered and burned out while we live in flesh bodies.  The message to the churches is a message to us His Church and these words never pass away and the Lord always has some more work to be done to rid us of fornication with worldly nations and gods.

Rev 2:19  I know thy works, and charity, and service, and faith, and thy patience, and thy works; and the last to be more than the first.

Rev 2:20  Notwithstanding I have a few things against thee, because thou sufferest that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols.

Rev 2:21  And I gave her space to repent of her fornication; and she repented not.

Blessed is the man that can read, hear and live out the words of judgment in the Book of Revelation (Rev 1:3).  In the same way, blessed are the men and woman of God that are being tried in the fire and given many battles with the enemies that the Lord has put and keeps in the Promised Land.

Jas 1:12  Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.

There comes a time to move on to greater maturity.  The Judge Othniel dies and the cycle of Israel’s (our) learning continues through the entire foundation of these twelve judges.

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

Studies

Angels of the Lord Camp Around the Saints

Download mp3 study, right click “save as”

Discussion

For Our Admonition Part 10

“Angels of the Lord Camp Around the Saints”

Key Verses: 2Ki 6:8-23

Being chosen as the true Israel of God and enduring the circumcision by the hand of God (Rom 2:29) ensures there are plenty of wars when our day of the Lord is at hand.  That is how the heathen nations within us (Luk 17:21) are subdued and brought into subjection to the Lord.  In this war, we lose many battles, especially the ones in the middle of our walk when we don’t remain vigilant to fight the good fight of faith.  The best news is that victory is ensured in Christ.  Whatever the Lord starts in us, He will finish exactly on schedule.

1Jn 5:4  For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.

Joh 10:27  My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:

Joh 10:28  And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.

Our story today has Syria warring against Israel with Elisha, the King of Israel, and Elisha’s servant (presumably the spiritual leper Gehazi) in view.  This story like all the OT stories is written for our spiritual edification and admonition.  Here is the first part.

2Ki 6:8  Then the king of Syria warred against Israel, and took counsel with his servants, saying, In such and such a place shall be my camp. 

2Ki 6:9  And the man of God sent unto the king of Israel, saying, Beware that thou pass not such a place; for thither the Syrians are come down. 

2Ki 6:10  And the king of Israel sent to the place which the man of God told him and warned him of, and saved himself there, not once nor twice. 

2Ki 6:11  Therefore the heart of the king of Syria was sore troubled for this thing; and he called his servants, and said unto them, Will ye not shew me which of us is for the king of Israel? 

2Ki 6:12  And one of his servants said, None, my lord, O king: but Elisha, the prophet that is in Israel, telleth the king of Israel the words that thou speakest in thy bedchamber. 

2Ki 6:13  And he said, Go and spy where he is, that I may send and fetch him. And it was told him, saying, Behold, he is in Dothan. 

2Ki 6:14  Therefore sent he thither horses, and chariots, and a great host: and they came by night, and compassed the city about. 

2Ki 6:15  And when the servant of the man of God was risen early, and gone forth, behold, an host compassed the city both with horses and chariots. And his servant said unto him, Alas, my master! how shall we do? 

2Ki 6:16  And he answered, Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them. 

2Ki 6:17  And Elisha prayed, and said, LORD, I pray thee, open his eyes, that he may see. And the LORD opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha. 

We all come to faith as spiritual Syrians.  Abraham, the father of faith and his sons were all Syrians (Chaldeans) first, before they were chosen as the Israel of God.

Deu 26:5  And thou (Israel) shalt speak and say before the LORD thy God, A Syrian ready to perish was my father, and he went down into Egypt, and sojourned there with a few, and became there a nation, great, mighty, and populous:

The king of Syria is a representation of our first born old man who wants to claim the land (dominion) that has been promised to Israel, who are God’s elect.  The battle for dominion in the land is with our own flesh, inside the kingdom of God within us.

Mat 10:36  And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household.

The physical history of flesh Israel reveals to us the spiritual experience that will follow for spiritual Israel which we are, as the Body of Christ.

The Hebrew word for Syria and Syrians [“aram” H758] comes from a root word “armon” that means to be elevated.  No flesh shall glory in the Lord’s presence which means the Syrians will be put into submission before the new man within us is raised up in glory. This requires us to trust in the Lord and His ways when we see the impossible ahead.

Zec 4:6  Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts.

2Co 10:3  For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh:

So long as we live in clay vessels we need to always be on guard against our flesh and the lusts therein.  They are always seeking to war with Israel to take back the spiritual land that Christ’s elect are being promised as our possession.

2Ki 6:8  Then the king of Syria warred against Israel, and took counsel with his servants, saying, In such and such a place shall be my camp. 

The King of Syria, a representation of the old man, our man of sin, is warring against the Israel and Christ within us.  This king relies on his servants, the lies and false doctrines of the harlot (Rev 9:16) to guide him in his warring conquests.  Yet Christ in us, the man of God (Elisha), guides the King of Israel (you and me) on the schemes of our fleshly enemies and the wiles of their father, the devil’s, servants. With the warnings and admonitions of truth from Elisha, we, the king, are able to send armies (truth) and save the land and thwart the Syrian advances.  This is spiritual warfare played out daily in our lives illustrated here in a biblical history lesson.

2Ki 6:9  And the man of God sent unto the king of Israel, saying, Beware that thou pass not such a place; for thither the Syrians are come down. 

2Ki 6:10  And the king of Israel sent to the place which the man of God told him and warned him of, and saved himself there, not once nor twice. 

This engagement and response against the Syrians is an ongoing battle not just once or twice.  We only enter into the Kingdom and eternal life thru many trials of faith and many tribulations (Act 14:22) with our own flesh.  This is how we grow, and our faith is proven.

Col 1:27  To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:

Col 1:28  Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus:

Col 1:29  Whereunto I also labour, striving according to his working, which worketh in me mightily.

Elisha, as type of Christ, and the elder and prophet, was obedient to the commands as a faithful watchman and warns us, the king of Israel, of the Syrian plans.

Eze 33:7 So thou, O son of man, I have set thee a watchman unto the house of Israel; therefore thou shalt hear the word at my mouth, and warn them from me.

Our old man is vexed (troubled) by the continued thwarting of his plans as the land remains under the dominion of Israel.

2Ki 6:11  Therefore the heart of the king of Syria was sore troubled for this thing; and he called his servants, and said unto them, Will ye not shew me which of us is for the king of Israel? 

2Ki 6:12  And one of his servants said, None, my lord, O king: but Elisha, the prophet that is in Israel, telleth the king of Israel the words that thou speakest in thy bedchamber. 

The Syrian king discovers that Elisha knows all his secrets and what he speaks in his bed chamber.  This reinforces how the Lord exposes our hidden sins and wicked thoughts in our day of the Lord.  To be destroyed all things must be brought to the Light of Christ.

Mar 4:22  NKJV For there is nothing hidden which will not be revealed, nor has anything been kept secret but that it should come to light.

The fleshly agenda of the Syrian king within us will be uncovered and the king of Israel is able to defend the land.

Luk 12:2  For there is nothing covered that will not be revealed, nor hidden that will not be known.

Luk 12:3  Therefore whatever you have spoken in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have spoken in the ear in inner rooms will be proclaimed on the housetops.

Yet our old man does not go easily.  This old king hatches a plan with the objective of capturing Elisha.  This is the plan of the Pharisees in all of us who hate Christ and seek to kill Him.

2Ki 6:13  And he said, Go and spy where he is, that I may send and fetch him. And it was told him, saying, Behold, he is in Dothan. 

2Ki 6:14  Therefore sent he thither horses, and chariots, and a great host: and they came by night, and compassed the city about. 

Secular scholars like to say that Dothan was the home of Elisha.  While we have no way of knowing that for certain we can deduce some spiritual significance from the name Dothan and apply that to our walk and journey onto maturity in Christ.  The only other place Dothan is mentioned in the Scriptures is the story of Joseph (Gen 37) where his ten brothers attempted to slay him and eventually sold him into slavery in Egypt.  Dothan is also the city where this Syrian army encampment takes places and there is an attempt to capture Elisha and put him into bondage.  Most experts claim Dothan means two wells or two cisterns which does fit both stories where the city is mentioned.

Jer 2:13  For my people have committed two evils; they have forsaken me the fountain of living waters, and hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water.

Like Joseph’s ten brothers and our flesh, the Syrians, we are committing these two evils as a Pharisee seeking to serve two masters and drink out of the wells of the Spirit and the flesh.  We are both the sons hating and the son being hated at our appointed times.

Gen 37:17  And the man said, They are departed hence; for I heard them say, Let us go to Dothan. And Joseph went after his brethren, and found them in Dothan.

Gen 37:18  And when they saw him afar off, even before he came near unto them, they conspired against him to slay him. 

As Pharisees we don’t want the land healed, we want to remain in power and control and not submit to the righteousness of Christ.  Hence, we plot like the Syrians to capture Christ.

Mat 12:14  Then the Pharisees went out, and held a council against him, how they might destroy him.

As Jews that believe on Jesus Christ (Joh 8:31), the Syrians within us (old man), seek to kill Christ and silence the truth so they can remain occupiers of the land.

Joh 8:40  But now ye seek to kill me, a man that hath told you the truth, which I have heard of God: this did not Abraham.

The king of Syrian wars against the ways of the Spirit and sends many horses, chariots and a huge host (army) to war against Israel and defeat it.  This is our battle against all that is in the world.  Horses symbolize the strength and power of the world and our flesh which is why Israel was commanded not to ride horses nor engage in any horse trading.

Deu 17:14  When thou art come unto the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee, and shalt possess it, and shalt dwell therein, and shalt say, I will set a king over me, like as all the nations that are about me;

Deu 17:16  But he shall not multiply horses to himself, nor cause the people to return to Egypt, to the end that he should multiply horses: forasmuch as the LORD hath said unto you, Ye shall henceforth return no more that way.

Deu 17:17  Neither shall he multiply wives to himself, that his heart turn not away: neither shall he greatly multiply to himself silver and gold.

Of course, with a bunch of heathen kings still living in the land, we are being caused to disobey all these commands first before we are caused to obey the Lord.  The example of Solomon was written for our admonition in taking many horses and many wives.

1Ki 4:26  And Solomon had forty thousand stalls of horses for his chariots, and twelve thousand horsemen.

1Ki 11:3  And he had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines: and his wives turned away his heart.

In the negative, chariots are lies and false doctrines that are pulled by the strength (the horses) of our carnal minds.  The two hundred million locusts (Rev 9:16) are described as these chariots which are lies (Isa 9:15) that darken the truth and blot out the Light that are saving us.

Rev 9:7  And the shapes of the locusts were like unto horses prepared unto battle; and on their heads were as it were crowns like gold, and their faces were as the faces of men.

Rev 9:9  And they had breastplates, as it were breastplates of iron; and the sound of their wings was as the sound of chariots of many horses running to battle.

It is through the use of these horses and chariots that our old man, as the King of Syria, wages war against the Israel of God within us and without.  The deceitfulness of sin that lies in all of us creep in unawares in the cover of spiritual darkness.  Before we know it, we are surrounded and we, like this servant, wake up to see our predicament and have no confidence in the Lord to deliver us.  The lesson here is one of faith and how we stand on faith and know that this battle is the Lord’s.

Deu 20:4  For the LORD your God is he that goeth with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.

We now get to the part of the story that is most instructive to our growing in the faith.

2Ki 6:15  And when the servant of the man of God was risen early, and gone forth, behold, an host compassed the city both with horses and chariots. And his servant said unto him, Alas, my master! how shall we do? 

2Ki 6:16  And he answered, Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them. 

The Lord is working this waging war within us and only He brings victory.  Learning to trust in the Lord and His sovereignty is how we are given to rise up and overcome our enemies via our faith.

1Jn 4:4  Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.

1Co 2:5  That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.

We are at war with our own flesh which seem hopeless until our eyes are opened.  Our young faith is being tested often as those trials are what build us up in the Lord and move us onto maturity.  We are learning to trust in the Lord alone and His supernatural power but at first, we cannot see the power that Christ has over all things.

Mat 28:18  And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth (mind and our bodies)

As Christ’s chosen disciples, we already have this power (Christ in us) but we don’t believe at first when our city is surrounded by the enemy.

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.

The truth of the Word puts exponentially more enemies to flight when the two converge.  No lies, the enemies of the truth can stand in the presence of truth.  Thus the meanings of these war stories from the OT become clearer to us and the  important of believing.

Lev 26:8  And five of you shall chase an hundred, and an hundred of you shall put ten thousand to flight: and your enemies shall fall before you by the sword.

Deu 32:30  How should one chase a thousand, and two put ten thousand to flight, except their Rock had sold them, and the LORD had shut them up?

When we are surrounded by our flesh (Syrians within) and it seems hopeless, the stronger are there to help the weaker in the faith.  This care should be cast upon Christ and we should seek help and prayer from the multitude of counselors.  Elisha, the mature man of God, prays to the Lord for the weak servant to see the spiritual truths and to see the true power of the Lord’s army.

2Ki 6:17  And Elisha prayed, and said, LORD, I pray thee, open his eyes, that he may see. And the LORD opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha. 

The fire that surrounds Elisha and all in the Christ is the Living Word (fire) that lives inside of us and is spoken when we speak truth.  The Lord’s horses and chariots are the truth, the doctrines on which we, the elect of God, ride and in which we stand.

Rev 19:14  And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.

Rev 19:15  And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.

Collectively this army is also known as the battle axe of the Lord through which all these heathen nations are destroyed.

Jer 51:20  Thou art my battle axe and weapons of war: for with thee will I break in pieces the nations, and with thee will I destroy kingdoms;

Jer 51:21  And with thee will I break in pieces the horse and his rider; and with thee will I break in pieces the chariot and his rider;

Christ, through His Christ is our protector and our protection.  There is no other place to be saved (Act 4:12)!  Our seeing this truth comes via the process off maturing via the trials the Lord is working in our life with the Syrians and other heathen nations.  The Body are the saviours and deliverers who help one another and protect us from the enemy within and without.

Psa 34:7  The angel of the LORD encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them. 

Psa 34:8  O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him.

Heb 1:7  And of the angels he saith, Who maketh his angels spirits, and his ministers a flame of fire.

 Pro 11:14  Where no counsel is, the people fall: but in the multitude of counsellors there is safety.

Most translations say this army was more [H7227] than the Syrians yet that being more or greater is only in power and strength not in quantity.  The sum of the Word makes clear that the people of God are a little flock who are few in number (Mat 22:14) but mighty in Spirit (Mat 28:18)

Luk 12:32  Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.

The lesson of Gideon’s army (Jdg 7) is an OT proof also where a thirty-two thousand strong army was winnowed down to just three hundred by the Lord’s design to conquer the much larger Midianites.   The Lord is saving a few now, through whom all men shall be saved.

2Ki 6:18  And when they came down to him, Elisha prayed unto the LORD, and said, Smite this people, I pray thee, with blindness. And he smote them with blindness according to the word of Elisha. 

2Ki 6:19  And Elisha said unto them, This is not the way, neither is this the city: follow me, and I will bring you to the man whom ye seek. But he led them to Samaria. 

2Ki 6:20  And it came to pass, when they were come into Samaria, that Elisha said, LORD, open the eyes of these men, that they may see. And the LORD opened their eyes, and they saw; and, behold, they were in the midst of Samaria. 

2Ki 6:21  And the king of Israel said unto Elisha, when he saw them, My father, shall I smite them? shall I smite them? 

2Ki 6:22  And he answered, Thou shalt not smite them: wouldest thou smite those whom thou hast taken captive with thy sword and with thy bow? set bread and water before them, that they may eat and drink, and go to their master. 

2Ki 6:23  And he prepared great provision for them: and when they had eaten and drunk, he sent them away, and they went to their master. So the bands of Syria came no more into the land of Israel. 

The second part of our story follows and begins with the Lord’s army coming together as one to hold each other up in time of war (Exo 17:12) and great trials.  It is standing together in the Name of the Lord that our enemies are being defeated.

1Th 5:11  Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do.

The servant of Elisha (us in our time of unbelief) is strengthened and comforted by the Lord’s small and powerful army that facilitates us winning the battles with our flesh (the Syrians).   The land is subdued and overcome by judgment that brings new light into the picture.  Yet before we can see spiritually we must come to see that we are blind.  The Word that brings judgment at first brings blindness and then only after a while do we realize we were blind as we begin to follow the Lord (Elisha back to Samaria).

Joh 9:39  And Jesus said, For judgment I am come into this world, that they which see not might see; and that they which see might be made blind.

Joh 9:40  And some of the Pharisees which were with him heard these words, and said unto him, Are we blind also?

Joh 9:41  Jesus said unto them, If ye were blind, ye should have no sin: but now ye say, We see; therefore your sin remaineth.

We have an OT witness to the same.  Those gathered against Christ and His Christ (the Syrians within, the Pharisees within) will be blinded and lose all strength and  direction of their old way of life.

Zec 12:3  And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it.

Zec 12:4  In that day, saith the LORD, I will smite every horse with astonishment, and his rider with madness: and I will open mine eyes upon the house of Judah, and will smite every horse of the people with blindness.

The fire of the Word of truth destroy our former mindset and reveal our blindness even as God’s people.  It is humbling to be blind and dependent upon others to lead us safely.  But that is how an elevated prideful Syrian is brought low in the appointed time.

Jas 4:10  Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.

Once blinded, the Syrians within us, readily follow Elisha (Mat 9:27, Mar 8:23) where he leads them back to Israel and then reopens their eyes, so they can see.  The last lesson in this story is learning to love our enemies and walking by the  law of faith.  Our enemies are doing exactly what the Lord has made them to do and for that we should be thankful as even they are for our sakes (2Co 4:15).

When our Syrian captives are brought back to the congregation of Israel, our first instinct as the king in training is to smite them or kill them.  This is how the carnal mind works but that is not the Spirit of Christ.

Luk 9:56  For the Son of man is not come to destroy men’s lives, but to save them. And they went to another village.

Mat 5:43  Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.

Mat 5:44  But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;

Elisha is obedient to the commands of God and teaches the king to be obedient and not do what the whole world does to their enemies.  Loving our enemies, spiritually speaking is for us to feed Christ (the sheep) and give them drink as Elisha persuades the King of Israel to do.  Paul and the Lord tell us to spiritually feed all those He puts in our path.

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.

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 25:40  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.

We can read on in Kings and see that the peace with the Syrians here was only temporary.  The war with our flesh is a lifelong affair that consume our entire age or aion in these clay bodies.  A different leader, king Benhadad, brings the Syrians right back into Israel after a season of peace and ends up conquering and controlling the land.  Little by little we get the victory, overcome and possess the land in the Kingdom of God within us.  Yet no matter where we are in that process, we are to never stop striving to walk the straight and narrow way.

Luk 13:24  Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able.

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

Sincere questions and comments are always welcome.  You can also email me directly at peterjwilson56@gmail.com and I would be  pleased to respond and help any way I can.

Your brother in Christ,  Pete