The Patriarchal Imperative of
Messianic Israel - Part 2
Sabbath Day Sermon, Saturday 16 April 2005
Click here for Part 1
A couple of weeks ago I was showing some guests from England around a beautiful Swedish manor house. One of them was standing by a small stream cascading down a steep incline which headed into a fjord. I, too, was captivated by the beauty of the site. It all looked so refreshing and pure. In fact, I took a photograph of it to remind me of the moment. As I traced the stream down to the fjord where the ice was melting my eyes were met by a horrible sight: the water from the stream, prevented from mixing with the fresh water of the fjord by the ice, had become concentrated into a floating sludge of pollutants. It was revolting. Worse, what I had thought was pure water was, in fact, contaminated. My eyes had deceived me.
The world has deceived us too. The brilliant Indian philosopher, Ravi Zacharias asks us to pause in what we are doing and to consider the world around us. This is what he said:
"To what lies have we been subjected? On every side I see the glare of billboards promising that happiness lies in the next car or the next house. Educators promise that if we only tell our children about sex we will reduce the rate of teen pregnancy and the threat of venereal disease. Social workers promise that drug education will remove this scourge from our continent if we will 'just say no'. Politicians promise that technology and communication will lead to better understanding and to peace. Lawmakers promise that new laws will eradicate racial tensions. Now we are promised that if only we would get God out of education and get the Creator out of the scheme of things we will all be better for it" (Can Man Live Without God? World Publishing, 1994, p.94).
These people have been saying these things for decades and things have only got worse. What is worse, in the democratic system we live in, we have come to believe that so long as we talk enough about problems that they will somehow go away. I live in a typical Western country where they are good at talking but where the same old ineffective solutions are being offered for the same old problems. Malcolm Muggeridge despaired: "In this Sargasso Sea of fantasy and fraud, how can I, or anyone else hope to swim unencumbered?"
People have not been trained to think independently and critically any more. The questions that are asked are the questions framed by others with a political agenda. People are busily doing research work to find out the causes of the problems of society and they are coming up with the same failed answers, or variations on the same theme. Ravi Zacharias draws out attention to the interview between Pilate and Christ in which the Roman Procurator asks the Messiah some seemingly searching questions. Let me first remind you of that conversation:
"Then Pilate entered the Praetorium again, called Yah'shua (Jesus), and said to Him, "Are You the King of the Jews?" Yah'shua (Jesus) answered him, "Are you speaking for yourself about this, or did others tell you this about Me?" Pilate answered, "Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have delivered You to me. What have You done?" Yah'shua (Jesus) answered, "My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, My servants would fight, so that I should not be delivered to the Jews; but now My kingdom is not from here." Pilate therefore said to Him, "Are You a king then?" Yah'shua (Jesus) answered, "You say rightly that I am a king. For this cause I was born, and for this cause I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice." Pilate said to Him, "What is truth?" And when he had said this, he went out again to the Jews, and said to them, "I find no fault in Him at all" (John 18:33-38, NKJV).
When Yah'shua (Jesus) confronts him with the real issue, which the Roman has been skirting, Pilate mumbles, "What is truth?" without waiting for an answer. You see, the fundamental problem that Yah'shua (Jesus) was exposing to Pilate and to the world is not the paucity of available truth but the hypocrisy of our search. The message of Yah'shua is that truthfulness in the heart precedes truth in the objective realm. Intent is prior to content. The most provocative statement Yah'shua (Jesus) made during that conversation was that the truthfulness or falsity of an individual's heart was revealed by that person's response to Him. The implication was uncompromising. He was, and is, the Truth. What you do with Him reveals more about you than it does about Him.
Right now, as most of you know, I am involved in a battle with the Swedish State over the right of parents to home school their children the way they want to. They are claiming - amazingly, you might think - that parents are incapable of raising their children, so the state has to do it for them. Indeed, the state even teaches that children should be 'emancipated' from their parents because parents are in some way 'dangerous' to their children. Well, I have no doubt that some parents are, but that does not make parenthood wrong. Furthermore, it never seems to have occurred to anyone that the state - a fictitious entity in any case - is made up of other human beings who are themselves parents. Logically, we should seek emancipation from the state too!
There are plenty of research papers on education but the search for truth is based on certain a priori assumptions - the intent of their hearts. And what is that intent? The intent is a search for truth without God and without Christ, and that is why the mess continues to get worse and worse. The state has substituted itself for Yahweh and claims some sort divine prerogative. But the instruments of the state are as human and fallible as you or I.
Last week we talked a little about Patriarchy or 'father-ruling' and I outlined for you seven principles of patriarchy in the Bible. The modern secular society claims to be anti-patriarchal and feminist. This is, however, a myth. You can't escape from patriarchy because it is built into the fabric of what being human is. What do I mean by that? Well, if you look up the word 'patriarch' in a dictionary you will probably find something like 'the male head of a tribe or family.' And that would be a pretty accurate definition. At least, it is accurate outwardly. But what is the substance of inner reality or 'patriarchy'? To answer that question, we have to ask ourselves what a 'father' is, which in Latin is Pater, from which we get 'patriarchy'. Now the dictionary is not so helpful here, in my opinion, and if you open one at 'father' you will find at least a dozen definitions: a male parent, a person who founds a line or family; a forefather, a respectful term of address for an old man, a male who originates something, a leader of an association, someone who procreates or generates something. A 'father', in its widest sense, is someone who generates or creates something new and presides over it as an authority figure. A father, then, is someone who acts as an authority over those who are occupying a children's rôle.
The state, therefore, acts as a composite father-figure for the nation, even if it has only been elected to be such, and even if its leaders happen to be women. If a woman acts in a male rôle then she behaves as a father rather than a mother. And there's no doubt that women are doing that today both in the state and in the home.
Some of you may know that between 853 and 855 A.D. there was a Roman Catholic Pope who was, in fact, a woman. John Anglicus was a ninth century Englishman. He travelled to Athens where he gained a reputation for his knowledge of the sciences. Eventually he came to lecture at the Trivium in Rome where his fame grew even larger. He became a Cardinal, and when Pope Leo IV died in 853 A.D., he was unanimously elected pope. As Pope John VIII he ruled for two years, until 855 A.D. However, while riding one day from St. Peter's to the Lateran, he had to stop by the side of the road and, to the astonishment of everyone, gave birth to a child. It turned out that Pope John VIII was really a woman. In other words, Pope John was really Pope Joan. According to the accounts, upon discovering the Pope's true gender, the people of Rome tied her feet together and dragged her behind a horse while stoning her, until she died. The first known reference to her occurs in the thirteenth century, 350 years after her supposed reign. Around this time her image also began to appear as the High Priestess card in the occult Tarot deck. It was only during the Reformation period that the Catholic Church began claiming this was just a legend.
For two years a woman ruled the mighty Catholic Church and was addressed as 'Holy Father' because she acted in that capacity. She acted as a father. It may have been an act of deception, with the mask being very different from the reality, but nevertheless the people believed and accepted it. When the truth came out, they reacted with rage more, I suspect, because they had been duped than out of any holy indignation.
Today we are being duped as well, though in different ways. Yahweh has already defined what fathers are and should be. Firstly they are males and secondly the nature of their fatherhood must meet certain spiritual criteria defined in Torah. They can't just be want they want to be or do what they like. All men are called to be the heads of families but not all men are called to be heads of state. Indeed in Yahweh's patriarchal system, you have a Theocracy or 'God-government'. Admittedly, Catholics and others have botched this up over the centuries and often set a terrible example but this does not mean the system of patriarchy is wrong: it simply means that the patriarchs have not been conformed to the spiritual principles that are demanded of them by the Creator.
Today the modern secular state has procreated, father-like, a political system that appears benign and beneficial to people but which is saturated with lies. We're not being told the truth even though the truth is often known. It's being suppressed. And the truth is that even though this society claims to be anti-patriarchal, it's about as patriarchal as you can get. The problem is, the wrong people are the patriarchs: they're either the wrong gender or they lack the spiritual qualifications. Or they're not even 'people' but a 'concept' framed by people who are long since dead and gone. In a word, society's patriarchy is an anti-God myth sustained by political and financial power.
Most of us cannot understand the language of the technocrats that formulate our laws. They have hidden their agendas carefully in complicated language. Those of you who have seen the British comedy series, Yes, Minister will know exactly what I am talking about. Even I, a highly educated man, have problems fathoming the strange language of the technocrats. Most people don't bother. They would rather trust their father-figure, the state, because that is how God has created man. But in a world of lies and deceit, we do so at our own peril. Even Satan is called a 'father' - the "father of lies" (Jn.8:44). So how do they get away with it? Let me illustrate how by relating an amusing but true story.
There was once a bandit called José Rivera who became notorious in several little towns in Texas for robbing their banks and businesses. Finally the townspeople had enough of him and hired a Ranger to track him down and recover their money. The Ranger at last arrived at a desolate, ramshackle cantina. At the counter he saw a young man enjoying his brew. At one of the tables, hands over his bulging stomach, hat over his eyes, snored another patron. The Ranger confidently approached the young man at the bar and announced he was on a mission to bring back José Rivera, dead or alive. "Can you help me find him?" he asked. The young man smiled, pointed to the other patron, and said, "This is José Rivera."
The Ranger walked over to the sleeping bandit, tapping him on the shoulder. "Are you José Rivera?" he asked. The man mumbled, "No speak English." The Ranger beckoned to the young man to help him communicate his mission.
The ensuing conversation was tedious. First the Ranger spoke in English and the young man translated it into Spanish. José Rivera responded in Spanish, and the young man repeated the answer in English for the Ranger.
Finally, the Ranger warned José Rivera that he had two choices: the first was to let him know where all the loot he had stolen was hidden, in which case he could walk away a free man. The second choice was that if he would not reveal where the money was stashed, he would be shot dead instantly. The young man translated the ultimatum.
José Rivera pulled himself together and said to the young man: "Tell him to go out of the bar, turn to the right, go about a mile, and he will see a well. Near the well he will see a very small tree. Beside the trunk of the tree is a large concrete slab. He will need help removing it. Under the slab is a pit in the ground. If he carefully uncovers it he will find all the jewellery and most of the money I have taken."
The young man turned to the ranger, opened his mouth ... swallowed ... paused - and then said: "José Rivera says ... José Rivera says ... 'Go ahead and shoot!'"
Now I am sure you will agree that something was lost in the translation. It was not the absence of knowledge that evoked ignorance, it was the suppression of truth. Now let me ask you this question: Does anyone really need to alert our society to the danger of promiscuity? Does anyone really need to tell our Hollywood élites that there is too much violence on the screens, glorifying the debased? Well, the answer is 'Yes and No'. Yes, because the warning cries need to be sounded to keep our young alerted to the pitfalls of the moral squalor to which they are subjected. But no also, because, for most, the truth does not really matter. It is the will that is wrong.
Both as an educator fighting the educational system, and as a minister fighting the spiritual sloth of the churches and the spiritual catharsis of society, I need to tell not only my own children but anyone who will listen about the two fundamental truths that define real life and living. What are these two truths? I will tell you.
Truth #1: humanity - you and I - are made in God's image. We didn't evolve out of some mud bath over aeons of time. Truth #2: the physical body is a temple of God. It is holy. What does entertainment do? It attacks both of these. It wants us to believe in a fairy tale universe of Jedi Knights and Daarth Vaders, pretending they are truth and falsehood locked in mortal combat when in fact they are two sides of the same evil - life without the true God, Yahweh-Elohim, and His Laws. It also wants us to believe that the human body can be defaced and mutilated, when in fact it is the image of Yahweh-Elohim Himself. Attack these two idols of our age and you will be met with a barrage of abuse, because behind all idols is a demonic power. Since that demonic power is committed to the destruction of the human race, those who are controlled by it just aren't going to care. And if you threaten their world, they are going to oppose you with every weapon they have at their disposal including, as a last resort, silencing you altogether. If they can use the legal system they will. If not, they will destroy you.
So really we have to ask ourselves the question: do we have the courage to stand up for truth? Will we defend out patriarchal truth against the Goliaths of this age? Or will we just go and hide and pretend there is no problem? You know, Satan will leave you alone if you don't disturb his Kingdom. He will bypass you until you are shocked and revolted enough to wake up and do something about it by which time it may be too late: it's at that time we find ourselves confronting totalitarian régimes which could have been stopped if only we had been a little more courageous earlier when it would have been easier to stop them. And how are we to stop them? By marshalling the weapons of truth: the pen is mightier than the sword. Trouble is, once the totalitarian régimes are established, pen and mouth are suppressed.
This goes for sin in general. Don't let the demonic get a stronghold in your life. Far better to pull the weed up early instead of letting it spread and grow deeper. Far better to deal with the issue of your salvation now than to keep on postponing it to a time when the roots of doubt and fear, caused by believing lies, have grown deeper because of procrastination.
Yesterday I had a dream of someone I love very dearly who has been procrastination his salvation. In my dream the index finger of his right hand dropped off. First it was hanging on a thread of flesh and then it fell right off onto the ground. The index finger is the one we use to point, it is what we use to symbolically judge. When we delay committing ourselves to Christ, we start to lose our sense of judgement. And that's a terrible thing. You can't point out a trap to a blind person because he cannot see it. And, brethren and sisters, we are approaching a time globally of great blindness. It's in the media, it's in our laws, and it's in the people. Most people never get to hear this message, just as most people in Noah's day didn't. Most people don't get saved. There were only 8 souls onboard Noah's Ark and there won't be many in the cities of refuge during the tribulation to come. The rest who repent at the last minute will be killed.
Nobody who is hearing the message of truth should be turning their ears away from it but rather they should be eagerly receiving and sharing it with others. The time is short and out witness is needed. And it's needed badly. Yahweh "has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was given to us in Messiah Yah'shua (Christ Jesus)" (2 Tim.1:8-9, NKJV). Won't you join with me in this end-time calling and participate in the harvest of the righteous? Let us be bold in the truth and help free others with it, is my prayer in Yah'shua's (Jesus') Name. Amen.
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Last updated on 5 June 2005
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