Saturday 12 April 2014

Gracebook,Intimacy and the Disobedient Prophet of 1 Kings 13

How the strange, almost kafkaesque story of 2 prophets and a king in 1 Kings 13 sheds a bit of light on the strange world of Walking In The Light. 

1 John 1:5-7

English Standard Version (ESV)

Walking in the Light

This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.

Facebook has been known by many of my friends in the last few years as Gracebook. Social media has rightfully been scorned for some terrible excesses, actually in a similar way to the excitement that preceded it in Friends Reunited.
Both have been  the cause of marital breakdowns and many forms of cheap relating, also threatening and abusive namecalling, not to mention pedophilia grooming.
2008 was quite a positive wake-up call though. Some of us started to realise what an online vehicle for good we have at our fingertips.
For a start, what seemed like  the beginning of an international Christian revival beginning in Lakeland , Florida, already had God TV able to beam it across the world, together with this new phenomena of social media. Around this time I began gingerly discussing Florida with others on blogs, centered around Dan Bowen's blog :Life on Wings. This was my first real outlet to begin sharing what I was seeing in God. With encouragement from others I began this blog in August 2008.
Soon after, and quite naturally, many Christian men as well as women began sharing their viewpoints and revelation via Facebook, at which point something died in the rather hermetically sealed world of Blogland...mostly Blogger and WordPress...and a lot of us now receive virtually no blog comments, but quite often people comment direct in Facebook. I am not currently on Twitter and have been taking a break from Facebook.
Between 12 to 30 of us, with many comings and goings, spent all but 2 years in a single private Facebook Thread.....
Between 12 to 30 of us, with many comings and goings, spent all but 2 years in a single private Facebook Thread that was as close to online church as may be possible but for conferencing face to face. And with the advent of 4G mobiles this may soon be possible.

Look at the following passage with these 2 keys.

The actual Spoken Word of God

Normal Human interaction

1 Kings 13

Living Bible (TLB) as continuous prose.

As Jeroboam approached the altar to burn incense to the golden calf idol, a prophet of the Lord from Judah walked up to him. 

 Then, at the Lord’s command, the prophet shouted, “O altar, the Lord says that a child named Josiah shall be born into the family line of David, and he shall sacrifice upon you the priests from the shrines on the hills who come here to burn incense; and men’s bones shall be burned upon you.”
 Then he gave this proof that his message was from the Lord: “This altar will split apart, and the ashes on it will spill to the ground.”
 The king was very angry with the prophet for saying this. He shouted to his guards, “Arrest that man!” and shook his fist at him. Instantly the king’s arm became paralyzed in that position; he couldn’t pull it back again!  At the same moment a wide crack appeared in the altar and the ashes poured out, just as the prophet had said would happen. For this was the prophet’s proof that God had been speaking through him.
 “Oh, please, please,” the king cried out to the prophet, “beg the Lord your God to restore my arm again.”
So he prayed to the Lord, and the king’s arm became normal again.
 Then the king said to the prophet, “Come to the palace with me and rest awhile and have some food; and I’ll give you a reward because you healed my arm.”
 But the prophet said to the king, “Even if you gave me half your palace, I wouldn’t go into it; nor would I eat or drink even water in this place! 

 For the Lord has given me strict orders not to eat anything or drink any water while I’m here, and not to return to Judah by the road I came on.”
 So he went back another way.


As it happened, there was an old prophet
living in Bethel, and his sons went home and told him what the prophet from Judah had done and what he had said to the king.
 “Which way did he go?” the old prophet asked. So they told him.
 “Quick, saddle the donkey,” the old man said. And when they had saddled the donkey for him,  he rode after the prophet and found him sitting under an oak tree.
“Are you the prophet who came from Judah?” he asked him.
“Yes,” he replied, “I am.”

 Then the old man said to the prophet, “Come home with me and eat.”

 “No,” he replied, “I can’t; for I am not allowed to eat anything or to drink any water at Bethel. The Lord strictly warned me against it; and he also told me not to return home by the same road I came on.”
 But the old man said, “I am a prophet too, just as you are; and an angel gave me a message from the Lord. I am to take you home with me and give you food and water.”
But the old man was lying to him.  

So they went back together, and the prophet ate some food and drank some water at the old man’s home.

Then, suddenly, while they were sitting at the table, a message from the Lord came to the old man,  and he shouted at the prophet from Judah, “The Lord says that because you have been disobedient to his clear command and have come here, and have eaten and drunk water in the place he told you not to, therefore your body shall not be buried in the grave of your fathers.”
 After finishing the meal, the old man saddled the prophet’s donkey,  and the prophet started off again. But as he was traveling along,
 a lion came out and killed him. His body lay there on the road, with the donkey and the lion standing beside it. Those who came by and saw the body lying in the road and the lion standing quietly beside it, reported it in Bethel where the old prophet lived.
 When he heard what had happened he exclaimed, “It is the prophet who disobeyed the Lord’s command; the Lord fulfilled his warning by causing the lion to kill him.”
 Then he said to his sons, “Saddle my donkey!” And they did.

He found the prophet’s body lying in the road; and the donkey and lion were still standing there beside it, for the lion had not eaten the body nor attacked the donkey. 

 So the prophet laid the body upon the donkey and took it back to the city to mourn over it and bury it.
 He laid the body in his own grave, exclaiming, “Alas, my brother!
 Afterwards he said to his sons, “When I die, bury me in the grave where the prophet is buried. Lay my bones beside his bones.  For the Lord told him to shout against the altar in Bethel, and his curse against the shrines in the cities of Samaria shall surely be fulfilled.”
 Despite the prophet’s warning, Jeroboam did not turn away from his evil ways; instead, he made more priests than ever from the common people, to offer sacrifices to idols in the shrines on the hills. Anyone who wanted to could be a priest.  This was a great sin and resulted in the destruction of Jeroboam’s kingdom and the death of all of his family.

Quite a story eh? Is it just me, or are there others who find this quite an enigmatic tale worthy of Franz Kafka? Except I think this is history and not fiction.

Covenant Relationships
Covenant relating or walking in the Light is a whole different dynamic.
The apostles had this dynamic. It is nearly nowhere to be seen in our current churches, and I do not actually see it on Facebook where Christians relate.

People are quick to quote Ecclesiastes 4:12 Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.
Few fact let's make that just me, talk about Genesis 15 and the splitting open of the carcasses, the darkness, and the supernatural flaming torch passing between them.

In May 1976 we heard a historic message preached apostolically and prophetically by Ern Baxter in Capel Bible Week. The reason I googled and found Dan Bowen's blog was because in 2008 I was looking for someone who had the first part of Ern's message. Somewhere we had mislaid this, although I have transferred the second part to mp3. The message was on Covenant Love as expressed through David and Jonathan's relationship, but used as a template for the kind of relating in the Body of Christ, and also between married couples.

Now people are quick to appreciate the extra strength of humans being interwoven with Christ in their relationships, but they are less quick to take on board the covenantal implications of walking together.
This John refers to as Walking in the Light.
Back in the 1970s we could see the vision of "walking together", and this had been laid from the beginning of our walk as Jesus people
in songs such as
Father I appreciate you.....and brother sister I appreciate you....etc
We are being built into a Temple fit for God's own dwelling place.

The vision of discipleship came back into the church, particularly through Juan Carlos Ortiz, although the Spirit had already led a lot of us in these ways, but also in the organisation Youth With a Mission, Operation Mobilisation and even before this the Navigators.

The vision of One ness in John 17 was being expressed through Graham Pulkingham, Jimmy and Carol Owens in the musical "Come Together", and in the great London prophecy of Maurice Smith The Glorious Church reproduced in this post with others.

However, in the 70s we did not have clear our self identity.....

However, in the 70s we did not have clear our self identity. So any concept of relating could only really be upon sand.
The complete revelation of a God of Abraham, Isaac and also Jacob right down to the Peniel experience is what we all need individually in order to "get" firsthand our identity  and who our Rock is, that is Jesus, the one fused now to our spirit, and also that we ARE spirit.
I will repeat that last bit : we are primarily spirit, but this is expressed through soul.
The whole thrust of secularism is that we are self-empowered souls...
The whole thrust of secularism is that we are self-empowered souls, and by default, the first 2 corporate expressions of Christianity still think this.
The vision of the God of Abraham and the God of Isaac only, doesn't really cut it.
This is why Psalm 24 specifically quotes Jacob.

Who may ascend into the hill of the Lord?
And who may stand in His holy place?
He who has clean hands and a pure heart,
Who has not lifted up his soul [b]to falsehood
And has not sworn deceitfully.
He shall receive a blessing from the Lord
And [c]righteousness from the God of his salvation.
[d]This is the generation of those who seek Him,
Who seek Your face—even Jacob. 

The vision of Jacob.... that is the summation of the vision of the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob ....and we get this by "seeking the Lord"...this is the revelation that clinches us as fully "getting " our self-identities.

As with all God "things", they are hidden in openness.
They are hidden in transparency.

This is the wisdom of God. He makes no secrecy of the fact that the whole of Christian life is summed up in the phrase : Christ in you the hope of glory.
Our problem, my problem, your problem, is that that phrase means absolutely nothing to your leftbrain, your conscious thinking.

The only way you are going to get it, is to seek God....for God. Then, everything begins to tumbler locks on a safe door...but internally.

The only way you are going to get it, is to seek God....for God

So.....back to the heading scripture!

This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.

There is simply nowhere we can hide.
Every christian uses social media because intimacy,closeness,sharing is desirable. The spin-off,the other side of the coin is that we cannot hide. We cannot retreat when someone touches us where we are still hiding, where we still sport figleaves.

This is the rather awkward place the Body of Christ now finds itself. Do you see the relevance of the story of the two prophets ? We have now been made a nation of prophets priests and kings. Jeremiah 31 declares the new covenant ; that we shall all know Him from the least to the greatest. So like the two prophets,until we are settled in our new identity we are going to be announcing that we have heard from angels, and that we really think you should be staying for tea. But then,just as in touch with the Throne as you are, the Spirit then blurts through us the corrective Word.  In the story the One charged with the nationally impacting message is the one who dies. But Both prophets were disobedient.
We can't just fall out any more. An explanation will be supplied whether we like or not. Our stories become very public about the time we claim to be....or perhaps we don't claim anything we just seek to bring the Word of the Lord to the Body of Christ.
In the story of the prophets we would be totally confused but for the Spirit clarification of the writer of 1 Samuel. We are told that when the second prophet claimed more up to date info...He lied.

We can't just fall out any more. An explanation will be supplied whether we like or not.

This is walking in the Light. This is fellowshipping.
Daniel Yordy has written a very key book entitled Eyes of Fire. In it he has done the work of a prophet and described the work God has already finished in the heavens in bringing forth a Bride without spot or wrinkle....but stating that this same Bride is becoming manifest on earth. And this same Bride looks out from her position as seated upon the throne tucked in the side of Jesus Christ. Like her bridegroom she is of the same Lamb nature , not seeking rule over, but like Christ,continually rising from underneath....going the powerless way of the Lamb who trod Gethsemane road. The way of the mercy seat. Bringing all things together in heaven and earth through the intercession discovered by St Paul....filling out the sufferings of Christ....why....because they are indeed Christ's sufferings but this time exercised through His multimembered Body.

So why should Daniel separate himself and indeed not allow us to finish posting the rest of the book Eyes of Fire ? I think this is because of something R.Edward Miller and Jorge Pradas warned our Emsworth congregation about. Several times Daniel writes about experiencing the place of the Mercy Seat, of looking out from this place. Both Jorge and Ed warned of the deception that they each had to learn. We enter this most holy place,individually, in the experience of the loss of all things,of the altar of incense.....but the new place is not individual. We return home in effect to that which is from the beginning. We awaken to the perfect image of corporate man neatly tucked up in perfect union with God and fellow man. All walls of hostility are broken down.
For this to be so....this image of the New Man is Not our image scaled up. It is not even our resurrected image scaled up to the nth degree. No,this is the completeness,the fullness, of each part fully working,fully in resurrection but containing the fullness of the whole. All 12 tribes. All the personalities of the 12 apostles. All the fullness of the 12 gates or 12 kingdom portal experiences that are couched within the rebuilt Jerusalem Gates described in Nehemiah.

Paul was used to attack the issue of disunity. He did it in two or three passages. Corinthians in two places and probably him writing in Hebrews 6. It could also be argued that by expounding fully upon the Grace of God in its outworkings in Romans individually,in Ephesians as church....He was doing the same namely making the link with immaturity and fracture,and disunity.

I could not address you as mature because each follows only one or two teachers. Do you not know that all are yours. The giveaway he writes about in 1 Corinthians 12 is that everyone is saying Because you are not a (fill in the blank) I have no need of you.Lastly in Hebrews chapter 6 brings up the sticky issue of continually laying instructions about baptisms/ water....Baptism in the Holy Ghost....other. initial we would call this evangelical and charismatic level believing.....basically you cannot hope to experience the full manifestation of the corporate Christ at this level of believing. You may experience something of the Unity of the Spirit...but are along way from the Unity of the faith.

The story of the two prophets show us that I don't have to be like you. I mustn't try to make you stop for tea with me.....or make you behave like me. Because we both walk in the Light....All our wrongdoing is going to show up anyway. There is no hiding for either of us. Each of us have to do precisely that which Christ is doing by us.

The story of the two prophets shows up this rather odd pairing that exists in the Body.....1. On the One hand the lovers,the people people.....who largely exist to bless others with hospitality....and 2. Those that find themselves quite naturally saddled/consumed with the Word of the Lord.  Teatimes are great....but not while Words to do with nation's destinies are being given. There is a serious edge to our relating in the Body of Christ. We have come to the City of the Living God. Of Ananias and Saphirra in Acts.
Last week a prophet in the UK died.
Three years ago this youngish man of God had become discouraged. My friend in northern England related the tale a few days ago. This friend of his just suddenly went right  away from God. An apostolic figure felt God warn him that his wife would not hang around forever,she would also get discouraged and leave him. Last year this happened. Chastened by this Word coming true,the prophet began to relate with them all again, also bringing in a brand new male friend with him,who became a committed Christian.
After many weeks of strong and direct words from Christ through this apostolic gift, the prophet was challenged to release all bad debts on his property management. It was one weight he wished to cling to. A few weeks later he was dead from a brain tumour. Presumably God knew the money worries were too great a risk to his health.

So you see we are not playing around.

In the next post I want to cover the Gates of Jerusalem which is a more in-depth look at Nehemiah chapters 1 to 8.
In the free for all that is Facebook, people remain in immaturity because they construct for themselves their own reality and don't realise that their Jesus Christ has to join with everybody else's Jesus Christ. It is easy to do this when we dismiss the bits of the Bible we don't like....the bits of the Body we don't like....and the experiences of the Living God we don't like that are available to all in the Spirit.
I want to end this post with a key to life in the Spirit.....
I want to end this post with a key to life in the Spirit and Hebrews 4. The Tree of the knowledge of good and Evil gives us information on every subject under the sun. But it doesn't give us the Tree of Life.
What I have picked up in Michael Hardin, Brad Jersak and Daniel Yordy is a Mennonite hatred of violence.
What I pick up in many UK and US Christians is a complete acceptance of Might is Right. This was the Anglican position in both world wars and now we realise is the very spirit exploited by Kitchener, Rothschild and Freemasonry to make huge sums of money and present an even larger blood sacrifice to their Lucifer god,who demands this in his worship.

So clearly this was a wrong spirit. But I discern in both the pacifist Mennonite position and the Republican.....war against terror....actually the same tree....just different ends.

As soon as we begin rebuilding Bible passages according to our fixed Tree of Knowledge positions we have already divorced ourselves from God's Life. Which,I stress again, is a totally different Tree: the Tree of Life.

In the wisdom of God the Spirit IS USING Hardin (especially in raising the profile of Rene Girard) Jersak and Yordy to kick into touch the angry god syndrome left in the mouth by anything to do with the Nicene Council.
The "substitutionary" death of Christ whereby this angry distant god could somehow work out all His wrath by substituting His own Son.

For more clarity on this issue read Rudi Louw's collections of insights, his own, and Francois DuToit and Andre Rabe in his new book "God's Love For You".
The truth is nearly 180 degrees opposite whereby God goes to the nth degree above what we could have even imagined to demonstrate His own ever FIXED love for us.

I feel the Lord has used the Mennonite pacifist position in this way, to provoke these three authors,Hardin,Jersak,Yordy and many others I don't know, to unearth the "coming up from underneath path of the Lamb", and especially from Gethsemane to the Cross.
Or as I heard it from Mother Basilea Schlink in 1974...."Go the Way of the Lamb, for it is a way of great power."
Daniel Yordy's Chapters which describe the walk to the Cross from Gerthsemane are really powerful and clear.
Basilea's actual commission had been to paralyse Chairman Mao's planned military advance on Europe. 
But through Schlink I was watching a model son of God in action. The context was this. A group of male and female 16-18 year olds would be invited to share in the life of the Lutheran Community at Darmstadt, whose attraction was a deeper clarity into the gospel and how it works through the battle of faith.
I was saddened upon arrival to hear that having gone specifically to hear from Basilea as much as I could, she suddenly felt called away to fast and pray. I'll explain that in a minute, but it was very noticeable on her eventual return that she had a huge anointing upon her as she gave the two messages which "Spirit-wounded" my life from then on.
Talk 1. was the above...Lamb message
Talk 2. Was similar, but "Seek the Face of the God of Jacob as at Peniel"

Basilea's actual commission had been to paralyse Chairman Mao's planned military advance on Europe. This was very real although Europe never got to hear about it. You can read passages in Jung Chang's book "Mao".
Basilea went into the throne of God and went into battle directly against the powers driving Mao forward in his expansionism. The very next thing anyone in the world knew was the following year when Kissinger, Nixon and Mao were all having tea together, in which I think plans were deferred for the end of the century. In many ways what wasn't accomplished militarily has been accomplished through financial clout. But that is another subject.

Both 1.when I was baptised in the Spirit and fire, and went through a definite two stage process on that day in the upper room in 1972, and also 2.the spirit I observed upon Basilea has absolutely nothing to do with modern Mennonite pacifism. There's a godly violence in the Throne room. Works of Justice as well as mercy.

Michael Hardin attempts to fashion Jesus after his Mennonite belief system in his reworking of Jesus in the Temple.(The Jesus-Driven Life) The Bible passages talk about Jesus DRIVING OUT the moneychangers with whips. Whether threats or actual physical hurts, the main thing is this was Holy Spirit as physical force.

Jesus spoke strongly to Peter. "Get thee behind me Satan..." addressing the spirit coming from his mouth. He groaned deeply as he pulled Lazarus back to life, with His "come forth." He expressed the strongest annoyance at the disciples after the Transfiguration...and probably because of the contrast...when they couldn't drive out the epileptic demon.."How long do I have to put up with this generation of unbelief?"

The letters of the New Testament also contain very strong and humbling corrections, the strongest of which came from Paul against Peter.

"Violent men take the Kingdom by force."

The Mennonite position is nowadays to pray always
to always speak softly
to let things be....que sera sera !!!

It's not that we shouldn't be praying. But some of us have done 40 years dying to flesh anger. We are expecting the anger that comes forth through us to be Christ....and to bring peace, even if not instantly.
This poofy, mamby pamby religious form of Christianity that strokes pet demons
Ours is the Christ push and shove of having lived a decade or more in Christian community and watched how through some kind of Spirit peristalsis movement, the Body of Christ squeezes all that is not part of the New creation to the surface to be judged, exorcised, kicked out, so that people experience true deliverance.

This poofy, mamby pamby religious form of Christianity that strokes pet demons and allows them continued house room is not the experience that comes from the baptism of the Spirit and fire.

I have had a personal run in with Michael Hardin (and not just Daniel Yordy).
Imagine two sharpshooters sidling into town and eyeing each other.
I openly attacked his mennonite pacifism, but he was judging me on my knowledge of theology. So he was a theological sharpshooter.
There are occasional references to study in the new testament, but there are far more references to Jesus almost righting off anyone who has come the way of study. So actually if any judgments are to be made regarding leftbrain skills, the Bible is far more a book about "working out your salvation with fear and trembling." About waiting on God's voice. About following the Spirit for these are the sons of God. This , in Michael Hardin's world, and even Brian McClaren and certainly Mark Driscoll, as well as ofcourse the evangelicals John Piper et al is exactly the reverse.

So for example Michael Hardin's form of attack against me was that I was gnostic.

Whereas my observation of him is that having spent ages going the leftbrain route, having begun well in the 70s Spirit Move, instead, in complete discouragement , he gives up on the Lord for a while. Well , Rich Novek has done that. But Rich doesn't treat me like dirt. He honours the fact that the Holy Spirit has largely kept Daniel Yordy and myself faithfully growing in the context of church community.

In my sharpshooting context, I am viewing how much a believer has lived out his or her Christianity in a Holy Spirit church community. In reality there have been relatively few of these. Even the ones that exist in terms of evangelism like Operation Mobilisation and Youth With a Mission have some horrible organisational "add-ins"....or "Jesus PLUS this".  Up until this point in time there are very few on earth that have had anything approaching the experience of the 12 disciples learning day in day out from Jesus. And in the measure that I have, all of us had to make Divine Telephone calls first, via what I call the Melchizedek Order, to find ourselves supernaturally placed together in such a Spirit setting especially between the years 1978-84.
But this was already something like my 4th or 5th experience of something similar since God radically blasted me out of my parent's Methodist religion via atheism in 1972.

A religious spirit sees God's anger and calls it disruption. Which is true.
A religious spirit sees God's anger and assumes it is anger after the flesh. Which it isn't.
A religious spirit condemns God's anger as provoking wrath, creating splinters and divisions. Which it isn't.
A religious spirit, as manifested in the crowd being offended by Jesus cannibalistic words in John 6 and leaving, then blames the one bringing the Word as having caused the mess, and with schadenfreude takes joy in the fact that Jesus is now left with only 12 followers or so. In other words it kills with 2 daggers.
This is what God's anger is.
It is specific.
This is what God's anger is.
It is specific.
It targets and deals with Darkness.
It openly declares itself like Jesus to be a bringer not of peace, but a sword. Why? because it is addressing that which can be shaken. That which is of the Old Order. That which is passing away.
It brings peace, because having driven out Darkness the Life of God now has an open infrastructure in which to peacefully thrive and flourish.
God's anger is definitely not PC. Politically correct means honoring the kings and pyramids of this world under Lucifer.  We honour God's order as ones in the world. We give to Caesar what is Caesar's. But we are NOT OF THIS WORLD. We are not run by the spirit that is in the sons of darkness, we live by another spirit that takes us right back to our original authenticity and uniqueness in God.

We are not of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. We are of the Tree of Life, and this is the community I have always lived among since being born again. The personnel may change, but the Spirit in which we live has never changed.


Chris Welch - 07000INTUNE said...

Hi Chris,

Another pair of sharp shooters from the past. Mr C Welch and Mr I Macaulay. Both brothers in Christ. Both with a unique prophetic edge. Both called by Christ but not easy partners in the gospel. Both of whom shot some fire into a young believer at Exeter Uni!

I'm off this evening to Luton Airport to visit Ian and Jane in Jerusalem - they've been living there for the past year or so.

Like many I have an interest in seeing the various biblical sights that have up to now, only been photographs in bible commentaries or tv documentaries.

Will report back.

Keep your rifle cleaned and ready!

John Stevens

Phillip Owen Morris said...

Very enlightened insights to be considered. The paths we share will lead us foward into territory yet unknown except by the history that propels us to seek a unity of beliefs in what we have seen done by powers other than our own initiative. I am keeping my lamp trimmed and burning here in the USA.

Phillip Owen Morris said...

Very enlightened insights to be considered. The paths we share will lead us foward into territory yet unknown except by the history that propels us to seek a unity of beliefs in what we have seen done by powers other than our own initiative. I am keeping my lamp trimmed and burning here in the USA.