KINGDOM BIBLE STUDIES
"Teaching the things concerning the Kingdom of God..."
THE HEAVENS DECLARE
GEMINI THE TWINS
Gemini, like all the Signs of the Zodiac, has three Decans, or minor constellations, which surround it. The Decans belong to the Sign and their message is the Sign's message. The three Decans of Gemini are Lepus, Canis Major, and Canis Minor. The first Decan, Lepus, is the figure of a hare or rabbit, which is under the foot of Orion, whose foot is about to trample him. This, however, is a relatively modern picture. Going back to the picture of the ancient Zodiacs one sees that it is not a picture of a rabbit but, rather, a picture of a serpent. Here again we have a picture of the serpent being trodden under foot of Orion another representation of God's Christ. Orion was the slayer of that lion that goes about "seeking whom he may devour. In his left hand he holds up the skin and head of a slain lion, and holds a mighty club in his right hand. But now we have another picture representing the Christ who slays the evil one. And so with His right foot, He is about to step upon not the hare but the serpent.
In previous messages on the Sign of Gemini we have shown how the Gemini Twins represent a united duality that exists in God and in all His ways and dealings with both creation and His people. The second Decan in the house of Gemini is CANIS MAJOR. CANIS MAJOR means The Greater Dog. This constellation tells of the glorious Prince who will subdue the serpent and reign. In the oldest Zodiacs Canis Major is not a dog but a hawk, swooping down upon the serpent, to destroy him. It has on its head a pestle or mortar, signifying that Christ thoroughly crushes the head of the serpent. So here we see a picture of Christ as the Prince who comes to bring destruction to the serpent nature within us. Then there is the Decan called CANIS MINOR, meaning The Lesser Dog. But again, this is a modern picture. In the ancient Zodiacs it was depicted as a human figure with a hawk's head. The brightest star in the man's body is Procyon, meaning The Redeemer or Redemption. So here we have in these two hawk figures the very same thing we have in the Sign of GEMINI pictures of the two aspects of the work of Christ: the Prince who comes to destroy the serpent, and the One who comes bringing redemption to the people. These are clear representations of THE TWO HANDS OF GOD!
THE TWO HANDS OF GOD
That "all things are of God" is declared over and over again in the Bible. Did not the Lord say to Pharaoh, that wicked man of rebellion against all that was of God, "Even for this same purpose have I RAISED THEE UP, that I might show MY POWER in thee, and that My name might be declared throughout all the earth?" (Rom. 9:17). The infinite wisdom of God's mind cannot be ascertained by these carnal little heads of ours. We must banish our childish theology and our superstitious concepts of God and bring our minds into harmony with the mind of Christ. We must begin to peer through the mighty telescope of divine wisdom as it looks through the vast universe of good and evil until heavenly light bursts with blazing brilliance upon our inquiring spirits and we see with crystal clear vision that God is in all things, and is responsible for all things, including all the so-called evil things as well as the good things. Is it not a fearful thing to say that evil is of God? There is nothing fearful about this view unless the TRUTH be fearful! I would not be surprised if some of the compatriots of the prophet Amos may have thought he was speaking blasphemy when by the Holy Spirit he said, "Shall a trumpet be blown in the city, and the people not be afraid? Shall there be evil in a city, and THE LORD HATH NOT DONE IT?" (Am. 3:6). There are untold tens of millions of Christians who do not like to believe that A-L-L T-H-I-N-G-S A-R-E O-F G-O-D including evil. They much prefer to believe, as the harlot system has taught them, that God created good, and the devil created evil!
There is a great and magnificent future ahead for the sons of God, and a great work our Father has for us to do in the ages to come, and He is preparing us and making us ready for the high and holy place He has for us. Can we not see that ALL THE NEGATIVE OPPOSING FORCES WE NOW ENCOUNTER are working together for our good to develop the strength, character, wisdom, and power we must have? The chastening and judgments of God, too, are negative, though they do bring forth a positive result. The positive work of God from His right hand lies in the inner anointing, guidance, enlightening, etc., and in the precious outward ministries, those the Lord sets in the body for our exhortation, edification, and comfort. The scriptures speak much of these positive ministries, which are all wonderful, sweet, and of great importance in the eyes of God. However, there is the work of purging, pruning, discipline, dealing, and training which must be accomplished in each and every one of God's sons; therefore in the work of God there is an additional part, the negative, opposing forces, from the LEFT HAND OF GOD!
The positive work of God's RIGHT HAND is wrought directly by the Holy Spirit within or by the Spirit through His anointed agencies. The negative work of God's LEFT HAND is brought about by satan (the adversary) and his instruments, the whole negative realm of evil. All the people, things, and happenings used in the chastenings and judgments of God are of satan's manipulation. For example, if someone is opposing us for righteousness' sake and causing us trouble, this opposition or trouble is directly the work of satan or the adversary. Again, the thief who steals our money, or the fire which burns down our house, is the work of the adversary. The word "satan" simply means ADVERSARY. Adversary means "one who opposes or fights against another; opponent; enemy." Satan is not a monster out of control, as multitudes of Christians imagine. Nor is he the adversary of God. God is OMNIPOTENT and has no adversary! But God has ordained an adversary in our experience for our development. If someone is obstinate, rebellious, and sins against God, and as a result becomes seriously ill, or suffers some loss or complication, this trouble is a work of satan the adversary. Therefore, all the people, things, and happenings involved in the discipline and judgment of God are measured to us by God according to our need. But the one who is manipulating or acting upon us in order to harm us is satan. BUT that which is acting BEHIND all the people, powers, things, circumstances, and events is the HAND OF GOD, CONTROLLING all the play and interplay till HIS PURPOSE IS ACCOMPLISHED and HIS NAME IS PRAISED! The purpose of our experiencing the disciplines of the Father is that we know the fullness of HIS LIFE. If there was only the discipline, but not the manifestation of His life, it would be meaningless. Thus, the two hands of God bring beautiful balance in the lives of all God's elect!
We see the left hand of God revealed in the life of Job. God had blessed this man with great wealth and a large family. He had seven sons and three daughters. He owned seven thousand sheep, three thousand camels, five hundred yoke of oxen, and five hundred she-asses. His household was very great with many hired servants so that this man was the greatest of all the men of the east. The only reliable testimony we have of Job's true state of being is that spoken by the Lord Himself, for the testimony of satan, the testimony of Job's friends, and at times even the testimony of Job himself as he reasons in the crucible of testing, are not to be trusted. The all-wise God Himself declared that Job was a PERFECT AND UPRIGHT MAN, one that feared God and eschewed evil. And may I add perfect yes, but UNTRIED, UNTESTED, and UNPROVEN, as Job himself admitted in the midst of his ordeal, declaring, "HE knoweth the way that I take: when He hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold" (Job 23:10). His perfection remained to be fully proven, tested, and demonstrated.
Now, what does God do but deliberately hand over this perfect man into the hand of satan to do his worst upon him. It was because God desired to test Job that He brought forth "the smith to blow the coals upon the fire." Please note that it was not satan's idea to persecute poor old Job! Oh, no! It was God Himself who brought up the subject. There satan was, presenting himself before the Lord, appearing for duty, and God asked, "Where have you been," Satan replied, "Walking up and down in the earth" (no mention of Job at all). "Well, Satan," the Lord asked, "have you considered My servant Job? Have you noticed that he eschews evil, and fears God? Have you noticed that, Satan?" You can be assured, dear ones, that satan had noticed Job, but he wasn't doing anything to him. Satan responds, saying, "Hast Thou not made an hedge about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on every side? Thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his substance is increased in the land. But put forth THINE HAND now, and touch all that he hath, and he will curse Thee to Thy face!" And the Lord said unto satan, "Behold, all that he hath is in THY POWER; only upon himself put not forth THINE HAND." Having received these orders, satan departed from the presence of the Lord. Hear it! "But put forth THINE HAND now." What was that that satan said? Did he ask permission to put forth his OWN HAND and touch Job? Not at all! He said, "THY hand, or "God, you put forth YOUR HAND and touch him. He is not even asking to be allowed to touch Job. Satan is initiating nothing in this exchange. But in response to God's question put to him, satan challenged God to stretch out HIS HAND, and that if HE touched Job and took away his blessing, Job would curse Him to His face. Then the Lord said to satan, "All that he hath is in thy power; only upon himself put not forth THINE HAND. Can we not see by this that satan was the NEGATIVE FORCE THROUGH WHICH God was moving upon Job, and is it not clear that this was the LEFT HAND of God as He was working with Job to bring him into yet a higher place than he had occupied hitherto? Furthermore, is it not true that the hand of satan stretched out against Job was also the hand of God? Though satan moved swiftly against Job, GOD WAS DOING THIS and His intention was to do Job good. This was not satan acting out his own little plan of intrigue and rebellion against God, but this was satan as the LEFT HAND OF GOD doing it!
In the second chapter of Job we find all this repeated. Again the sons of God have come before God to report on their activities, and again satan comes among them. Again Job is presented to satan by God as a perfect and upright man. And again satan suggests, "Skin for skin, yea, all that a man hath will he give for his life. But put forth THINE HAND now and touch his bone and his flesh and he will curse Thee to Thy face. And the Lord said unto satan, "Behold, he is in THINE HAND; but save his life. Job has already suffered the sudden and catastrophic loss of his sons and daughters, his houses and lands, his cattle, sheep, camels and oxen. Now Job's body will be wracked with disease and tortured with pain, and he will lose his reputation before all men. His good works will be forgotten and he will become the object of ridicule from those who were formerly his friends.
I would now draw your reverent attention to the magnificent words which reveal Job's reaction to all this. "Then said his wife unto him, Dost thou still retain thine integrity? Curse God and die! But he said unto her, Thou speakest as one of the foolish women speaketh. What? shall we receive good at the HAND OF GOD and shall we not receive evil? IN ALL THIS DID NOT JOB SIN WITH HIS LIPS" (Job 2:9-10). Notice! Job never did recognize any such person as satan in all his trouble. He recognized ONLY GOD in this and said that even as he had received good from the HAND OF GOD was it not logical that he should receive evil also FROM GOD? What faith! What marvelous understanding! Job actually attributes all this evil to the work of God. He doesn't even recognize satan as doing anything, no sitting on the ash heap moaning, "The old devil has been after me all week!" It will be an appalling shock to many precious people to learn that in ALL this Job did NOT SIN (miss the mark) with his lips! We have every right to conclude from this that Job was speaking the absolute truth when he attributed all this evil to God. He was, in fact, "right on!" What he had said was right in the sight of God. No place did the Lord rebuke Job for his words in any way. In fact, in the end of the experience God said that Job had spoken rightly of Him and ALL OTHERS HAD NOT.
Job has yet a further word on this to which we do well to take note. "Have pity upon me, O ye my friends: for THE HAND OF GOD HAS TOUCHED ME" (Job 19:21). The hand of whom? The hand of God! WHICH hand of God? Why, beloved, it was the LEFT HAND of God! Job knew that the hand of God had not been laid upon him for good, but for evil. Yet he recognized it as THE HAND OF GOD. Prior to this experience, Job had known nothing but the RIGHT HAND of God in goodness and blessing, in the anointing of God. There had been no adversity. There had been no adversary. There had been no testing. No severity. Now God has begun using His left hand in His dealing with Job, yet Job still recognizes it as God's hand. What wisdom and understanding! Would God that the Christians of our day possessed such understanding! The nominal church and its preachers and teachers try to make us believe that satan conspired to do all this to poor old Job by his own design. But it was God, my friend, and satan was merely the LEFT HAND of God, or the negative means God used. These people have no knowledge at all of what they are talking about. They know nothing of the ways and the workings of God. They are blind leaders of the blind. They have exalted satan to godhood, giving HIM the glory for all he does, and, indeed, in most things, they attribute more power to him and praise him more than they do God! Ignorantly these foolish ones talk about poor little God "trying" to do this and that, while the shrewder and smarter devil slips up on God's blind side and demolishes His whole work. "Rubbish!" saith the Lord.
The left hand of God is manifested through a people, those in the kingdom of darkness. The right hand of God is likewise revealed through a people, the sons of the Kingdom. Thank God! we are not called to be a part of the left hand company. "If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, WHERE CHRIST SITTETH ON THE RIGHT HAND OF GOD. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth" (Col. 3:1-2). "Him that overcometh will I grant to sit WITH ME IN MY THRONE, even as I also overcame, and am set down with My Father in His throne" (Rev. 3:21). "The voice of rejoicing and salvation is in the tabernacles of the righteous: the RIGHT HAND of the Lord doeth valiantly, the RIGHT HAND of the Lord is exalted" (Ps. 118:15-16)
Although at this time there is humiliation and suffering, there is coming a time of exaltation, already experienced within. Although today it may seem as though not much is happening outwardly, yet there is a time approaching when GOD'S RIGHT HAND COMPANY shall step forth in the fullness of the power of His throne and there shall be a manifestation of the "greater works" Jesus spoke of. When on earth, the firstborn Son suffered reproach and finally death but where is He now? Exalted to the RIGHT HAND of the Father, far above all principalities and powers, and every name that is named, not only in this age, but in that which is to come. He passed through a season of shame and reproach, but dwells now in a glory that can never fade. And there is a place with Him and for all who overcome, a place of glory and eminence and power at the right hand of God!
Yes, my beloved, God has TWO HANDS the RIGHT and the LEFT. The only way we can ever know what is "right" and what is "left" is by becoming properly related to God, positioned in Him, to SEE AS HE SEES! Right and left is never determined in relation to us, from where we sit or how things appear to the natural mind, but only in relation to God, from where HE sits and how things are to HIM! "I saw the Lord sitting on His throne, and all the host of heaven standing by Him on HIS RIGHT HAND and on HIS LEFT" (I Kings 22:19). "Therefore being by the RIGHT HAND OF GOD exalted...He hath shed forth this which ye now see and hear" (Acts 2:33). "GOD...set HIM at His OWN RIGHT HAND in the heavenly places...and hath raised US UP TOGETHER, and made US SIT TOGETHER in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus" (Eph. 1:20; 2:6). Ah, it is there IN CHRIST JESUS AT THE RIGHT HAND OF GOD that we are positioned with God, to see as He sees, the things at His right hand becoming the things at our right hand and the things at His left hand are at our left hand. How can we know, in any circumstance or situation, just what is needed? Should God deal with His right hand of blessing, or His left hand of judgment? Should we rebuke the devil that the captive be set free, or remain silent in the knowledge that this one is, for a season, delivered unto satan for the destruction of the flesh? If we render a decision based on some stock set of "promises" in the Word, or on how things appear to us outwardly, apart from the mind of the Spirit, we will invariably take the wrong action! Then we will wonder why our commands in Jesus' name produce no results and our prayers go unanswered. The natural mind always has things reversed. You see, precious friend of mine, if you stand looking at God (as a spectator) His right hand will be at your left hand, and His left hand will be at your right hand. Right and left will become confused. Only in proper relationship to God, in union with Him, receiving the mind of Christ, and the illumination of the Holy Spirit, can we comprehend God's purposes, our spirit saying Amen, and our actions flowing in harmony with what the Father is doing. It is only as we are SEATED WITH HIM AND IN HIM AT GOD'S RIGHT HAND that His right hand becomes our right hand and His left hand becomes our left hand. Only there can we discern and know as God knows what is left and what is right, and when and how to move therein. We must reign AT HIS RIGHT HAND!
Once we thoroughly understand the dual ministry of God's two hands we will thank Him for ALL THINGS He sends into our lives. We will thank Him for adversity not just for blessing. And we will thank Him for every problem, every disappointment, every faithless friend, every heartache, every false accusation that has ever been made against us. "Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you..." (I Pet. 4:12). When God by revelation has made this very real to our hearts we will say, "Oh, God, I thank Thee for putting me on the operating table, for cutting out that which was hindering me." You and I are being trained and disciplined in order that in wisdom and righteousness and power and love we may reign with Christ at God's right hand.
What is your response to the dealings of God in your life? Are you angry and bitter at your circumstances, filled with resentment and rage? Are you inwardly shaking your fist at God, demanding, "Why does this happen to me?" Or are you broken and humble? What is your spirit? What is your attitude? What is your deepest sentiment? There is a verse in the Old Testament that beautifully clarifies these truths. "I will mention the loving kindnesses of the Lord, and the praises of the Lord, according to all that the Lord hath bestowed on us, and the great goodness toward the house of Israel, which He hath bestowed on them according to His mercies, and according to the multitude of His loving kindnesses. For He said, Surely they are My people, children that will not lie: so He was their Saviour. In all THEIR AFFLICTION HE WAS AFFLICTED, and the angel of His presence saved them: in His love and in His pity He remembered them; and He bare them, and carried them all the days of old. But they rebelled, and vexed His Holy Spirit: therefore HE WAS TURNED TO BE THEIR ENEMY, AND HE FOUGHT AGAINST THEM" (Isa. 63:7-10).
Everything that happened to Israel in the Old Testament happened for our example and learning (I Cor. 10:11; Rom. 15:4). When Israel rebelled against the Lord, He became their ENEMY! God becomes your enemy when you walk after the flesh, for the carnal mind is hostile toward God (Rom. 8:7). The Lord's people, then and now, rebel and grieve the Holy Spirit. Then God becomes your adversary your satan! Whenever the believer frustrates the grace of God by being bull-headed in his conceit, or stubbornness, or pride, or bitterness, or resentment, God becomes his enemy. In that moment the LEFT HAND OF GOD becomes the adversary against that unholy attitude or action. And for our good, God will fight with us to correct us. God will discipline and mold us as sons. This will produce the peaceable fruit of righteousness in us. To be carnally minded is death. God wants us to live! God will trouble us, pursue us, and put His sword at our throat until we break and learn that God's way is the best way! I know what is happening to you who are crying out in your spirit to be like the Lord: you are being processed and changed and trained and matured! One extreme in the land proclaims the great things, prosperity, healing, miracles and abundant life, bountiful blessings from God's right hand. The other tangent can only project the terrible things, doom, gloom, judgment, darkness, tribulation and the work of the cross, the dealings of God's left hand. But God has TWO HANDS and He works in a balanced way. We rejoice in the faith and goodness and prosperity from God's right hand; but we do not shrink from the chastenings and dealings from His left hand that will make these truths work themselves out in reality and practicality.
The carnal mind says, "I see no value or purpose to all this trouble and tribulation." The carnal mind is shrewd as a lawyer looking for a loophole. The carnal mind doesn't like it or want it. The mind of Christ, the spiritual mind of Rom. 8:1-6, knows that the servant is not above his Lord. The disciple is not above his Master who learned obedience by the things He suffered. God is preparing a people who cannot be moved or upset or frustrated by anything. The cry of His heart is for a people who can share His throne and shepherd the nations with a rod of iron (Rev. 2:26-27). We cannot afford the luxury of our personal feelings. WE HAVE NO "RIGHTS". If we do, we'll lose them under the dealings of God's left hand! Your testings will last as long as it takes to change your mind, attitude, and actions. Can we walk around in the furnace without complaining? Can we sing and dance in the fire? Can we shout praises in jail at midnight? The key to God's whole program operating in your life is your spirit and attitude of response to HIS WILL in your life. When your attitude and conduct become right, then the dealings of God's left hand will cease.
How beautiful the knowledge that both of God's hands are WORKING TOGETHER to produce in us the life and righteousness and glory of God. "Thy people also shall be all righteous...the branch of My planting, the WORK OF MY H-A-N-D-S, that I may be glorified" (Isa. 60:21). And how wonderful, too, the knowledge that God shall in due time so deal with all mankind. How important that we enter into such intimate relationship and vital union with God that we see all things AS HE SEES THEM. Some years ago I read a sermon by a brother who gave this precious experience which, to me, wonderfully reflects the purpose in the dealing of the two hands of God. The brother said, "On Mother's Day I sat and listened to a fellow minister preach. It was a wonderful word, and while listening I sat there and looked at the folk in a very relaxed sort of way. I saw a mother wearing a lovely corsage sent to her by her son in the East. He is a prominent business man, high up in government circles, but he is not a Christian. She is praying for him. She has asked others to pray for him. She said to me one day with tears streaming down her cheeks, Oh, Bro. ___ , I pray that God will save my boy. I pray that He will save him even if He has to put him on a sick bed; EVEN IF HE HAS TO KILL HIM I pray that He will save him!' If the FBI heard her plotting like that, would they arrest her? No, sir! She loves her boy! She loves him with all her heart, and if giving her own life would save that boy, she would give it immediately" end quote.
Even in judgment, dear ones, God is love! May all who are called to be KINGS AND PRIESTS of God be possessed of such a divine love for the whole world! "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son" (Jn. 3:16). God so loved that He was willing to pay the very highest price to redeem all unto Himself. God gave His blessed Son to be slain for us, and now He says to us, "I will save you and I will conform you to My image and share with you My glory even if I have to KILL you to do it!" "See now that I, even I, am He, and there is no god with Me: I kill, and I make alive; I wound, and I heal; neither is there any that can deliver out of My hand" (Deut. 32:39). Praise God! this is how His righteous hands work, He kills only to make alive and wounds only to heal. He kills only those things that should die and makes alive the things that should live. What beautiful co-ordination in all the works of HIS HANDS!
THE SON OF THE RIGHT HAND
Just as there are twelve Signs of the heavens, so in scripture are there twelve sons of Israel. "And he (Joseph) dreamed yet another dream, and told it his brethren, and said, Behold, I have dreamed a dream more;
and behold, the sun and the moon and the eleven stars made obeisance to me. And he told it to his father, and to his brethren: and his father rebuked him, and said unto him, What is this dream that thou hast dreamed? Shall I and thy mother and thy brethren indeed come to bow down ourselves to thee to the earth? And his brethren envied him; but his father observed the saying" (Gen. 37:9-11).
Norene Nicholls has written: "It is not the whole interpretation of this dream in which we are interested at this time, but for the purpose of this study let it be pointed out that Joseph saw his eleven brothers as eleven stars or constellations. If each of them was a star and eleven stars represented the eleven brothers, then Joseph as a brother must have been the twelfth star or constellation. This immediately brings us face to face with the twelve signs of the Zodiac, each son of Israel represented by one sign of the Mazzaroth or the Zodiac. Furthermore, the promise to Abraham was that his seed would be as the stars of heaven which certainly corroborates this. Let me remind you that the stars are for SIGNS according to Genesis 1:14. This same word is used in Numbers 2:23, 'Every man of the children of Israel shall pitch by his own standard, with the ENSIGN of their father's house: far off about the tabernacle shall they pitch. And on the east side toward the rising of the sun shall they of the STANDARD of the camp of Judah pitch throughout their armies...' Here the Hebrew word is translated as ENSIGN whereas in Gen. 1:14 it is translated as SIGNS. It simply means a sign of reality or even at times as a sign of things to come. In the wilderness Israel encamped and marched in a certain God ordained order with every individual camped under the ensign of his own particular tribe. An ensign was a pole on the top of which was a sign depicting that particular tribe. So it was and is that for each of the twelve tribes there were and are twelve ensigns the twelve signs of the Zodiac. There is a Zodiacal sign for each tribe. We do know that the ensign of Judah was Leo, The Lion, and our Lord Jesus Christ is called, 'The Lion of the tribe of Judah.'
"BENJAMIN'S individual tribal sign is GEMINI, the sign of their particular ensign. The name GEMINI in Hebrew means doubled, for Gemini is known as THE TWINS, whom the Greeks called Apollo and Hercules but the Romans called Castor and Pollux. Thus it is we see Paul even sailed in a ship whose sign was Castor and Pollux. In considering that Gemini means the twins or doubled, it is easy to see how Benjamites do things not by ones but by twos. In other words, if a thing is good, Benjamin has a tendency to repeat it. Benjamin means SON OF MY RIGHT HAND which is a position of honor and power, as the right hand speaks of the strong hand. Christ Himself is seated at the right hand of God, showing His position of power and authority. The three associate constellations of Gemini bear out the picture of Benjamin even further. The first one is Lepus meaning the ENEMY TRODDEN DOWN. Benjamin will never cease until both feet (another double) are on the enemy and the enemy conquered. True spiritual Benjamites are warriors indeed, warriors in the spiritual battle against wicked spirits in the heavenlies. The second constellation associated with Gemini is Canis Major, and the third one is Canis Minor. As can be seen by the names, they are closely allied. Canis Major means a big dog or wolf whereas Canis Minor means a little dog or wolf. Again the doubling of Benjamin is recognized, discerned in this, for he has to deal with two wolves a big one and a small one. This fits so beautifully with Jacob's dying prophecy to Benjamin: 'Benjamin shall ravin as a wolf...' (Gen. 49:27). If you look carefully, you will see that the word as is in italics in the King James Bible, showing it was supplied by the translators who figured it made more sense that way. But leave out that little preposition and see what the real meaning is BENJAMIN SHALL RAVIN A WOLF! It means just the opposite of what most of us think, for Benjamin doesn't ravin as a wolf, but rather he ravins the wolf itself. In Eze. 22:27 the false PRINCES or RULERS are referred to as wolves. In Hab. 1:8 the BABYLONIANS are called wolves. And Zeph. 3:3 states that the backslidden PRIESTS are as evening wolves. Furthermore, in Mat. 7:15 Jesus refers to ravening wolves' which literally means 'wolves of extortion'. Taking these scriptures together, it is easy to see that spiritual Babylon (confusion) is full of backslidden princes and priests who confuse and extort the people. Against such Benjamin arises in righteousness and will never cease until both the little wolves and the big wolves are ravined by him and defeated" end quote.
The book of Judges is the account of Israel's history after they had been brought into the promised land and after Joshua and all the elders, whom God had brought up out of Egypt, died. There are several key events about this time in their history that speak powerfully to us about our walk in God and possessing our inheritance in Christ. You would suppose that, after all that God had done for the people of Israel, and after their own promises to serve Him faithfully, they would never turn to the idols which could not help or save their own people, the Canaanites. Yet, when Joshua was no longer living, and the men who knew Joshua had also died, the people began to forget Yahweh and to worship images of wood and stone. Then, too, you remember that the Canaanites had not been driven out of the land. They were there still, in their own cities and villages everywhere, and their idols were standing under the trees on many high places. So the Israelites saw idols all around them and people bowing down before them; while they themselves had no God that could be seen. The Tabernacle was far away from some parts of the land; and the people were so busy with their fields and their houses that few of them went up to worship.
And so it came to pass that the people began to neglect their own worship of the Lord their God and then to begin the worship of the idols around them. And from idol worship they sank lower still into wicked deeds. For this the Lord caused them to suffer. Their enemies came upon them from the lands around and became their masters; for when God left them, they were helpless. They were made poor, for these rulers who had conquered them robbed them of all their grain and grapes and olive oil. After a season of suffering the Israelites would remember what the Lord had done for them in other times. Then they would turn away from the idols and call upon God. And God would hear them and raise up some great man to lead them to freedom and to break the power of those who were ruling over them. This deliverer they would call "a judge", and under him they would serve the Lord and be successful once more. As long as the judge lived and ruled, the people followed the Lord. But when the judge died, they forgot God again and worshipped idols and fell under the power of their enemies as before, until God raised up another judge to deliver them. And this happened over and over again for two hundred years after Joshua died. Seven nations in turn ruled over Israel, and after each "oppression" a "deliverer" arose to set the people free.
One of the powers that ruled over Israel was the Moabites who came against them from the land east of the Dead Sea. Their king at this time was named Eglon, and he was very severe in his rule over the people of Israel. The record states, "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. And he gathered unto him the children of Ammon and Amalek, and went and smote Israel, and possessed the city of palm trees. So the children of Israel served Eglon the king of Moab eighteen years" (Judges 3:12-14). Again they cried to the Lord, and God called a man named Ehud, who belonged to the tribe of Benjamin, to deliver the people.
Eglon, the king of Moab, spiritually represents the power of the carnal mind. He gathered the children of Ammon and Amalek together and possessed the city of palm trees. Ammon was a son of Lot whose name means inbred. Amalek has always served as a symbol of the flesh. Eglon speaks of that which surrounds or encircles. Thus, this three-fold league symbolizes the carnal mind and the flesh strengthening themselves to surround and possess that which only belongs to the Spirit Son. This bondage Israel suffered for eighteen years (6 + 6 + 6) is like having the carnal mind and the flesh completely imprison your spiritual life within vain, restricting and extremely carnal concepts. It is sad that among the Lord's people today the true purposes of God are rarely understood. The rich inheritance of sonship, of our spiritual kingship and priesthood, is hidden from the multitudes. The purpose of God to reconcile all things to Christ and deliver the whole creation from the bondage of corruption is ridiculed as being either heresy or a fairy tale. The manifestation of the sons of God to effect this glorious deliverance is not even comprehended the spiritual minds of the people have become dull and frozen by dead doctrines and static creeds and carnal hopes about almost everything. There is no end to the childish ideas flowing through the churches none bears any relation whatever to God's true plan and purpose in the earth.
There are so many deep and powerful mysteries hidden within these words of the Lord strengthening the hand of King Eglon. But they all point to the awesome power of the carnal mind and the flesh which captivate and imprison the true value of our inheritance in Christ, bringing the high things of the Spirit down to the carnal, natural, humanistic plane of consciousness. Instead of living out of the high realm of spiritual life and reality as new creation men who were dead but are now made alive and raised up and made to sit with Christ in the higher-than-all-heavens, King Eglon binds saints to the crude, unspiritual notion that immortality, incorruption and eternal life are experienced and known only in the body realm thus, there is no spiritual consciousness of life apart from the flesh body; so, though the scriptures and the Holy Spirit bear witness with our spirit that we have been born from above and are the children of God possessing eternal life, King Eglon tells you that the new creation man, the inner man, the resurrected man, the quickened man, has no enduring substance or eternal reality and should your body die you have no life at all, you are just as dead and unconscious and non-existent as a dog lying on the highway! Rather than being caught up now to the throne of God in the power and glory of the spirit, King Eglon bids you wait for a future "rapture" when your body will go soaring through the air to some beautiful Isle of Somewhere to strum harps and wave palm branches on golden streets forevermore. In place of now supping with Christ in spirit and in truth, feeding from the divine substance of His Word and drinking from the living fountain of His eternal Spirit, King Eglon would have you eat wafers and drink wine or grape juice, imagining that in some mystical way that natural, perishable substance ministers spiritual reality into your life. I do not hesitate to tell you that such a practice is not one whit less superstitious and pagan than the customs of the heathen who bring offerings of food and drink to offer to their gods of wood and stone, supposing that in some magical way the gods are able to partake of it! The applications are endless but I trust you get the message. King Eglon always takes the high and holy and spiritually real things of God and drags them down to a carnal, natural, physical, limited, earthly and mortal level of consciousness and experience.
Ehud, the Benjamite deliverer, was a left-handed man. In Judges 20:15-16 we find that there were 700 chosen men, Benjamites, who were left- handed men that could sling stones at a hair breadth and not miss. Why was Benjamin's left hand so anointed? When he was born, his father called him Benjamin, which means "son of my right hand." But since this son of Israel's right hand was left-handed, it was his left hand that grasped his father's right hand as they stood together, bringing right and left together, into union. Thus Benjamin, Ehud the deliverer, and the 700 left- handed Benjamite sling masters, were one and all LEFT HANDED SONS OF THE RIGHT HAND! What can it mean? It can only be understood in relation to the "double" we have already seen in the Sign of Gemini! The name EHUD means "united, union." In him the left hand and the right hand of God are UNITED AND JOINED in that perfect balance which can deal redemptively with all things. Ehud represents the divine wisdom, knowledge, understanding, authority, power, grace and love that are being raised up in perfect balance within each son of God. He is a type of the many-membered man, the enChristed, the manifested sons of God in whom the power of the carnal mind and the flesh is dethroned and destroyed in every realm, and through whom perfect and complete deliverance shall be brought to creation. Historically, he is a type of Jesus, our Forerunner, who truly destroyed within Himself the king of flesh. In our present He is the agent and power of Christ's accomplishment of this same victory in the saints. In our future, he shows forth the long-awaited ministry to creation of those who have walked into the high realms of God's purpose hidden in Christ Jesus the Lord since the world began.
Let us now consider how Ehud gained the victory for Israel. Ehud came one day to visit King Eglon, who was ruling over the land. He said to the representatives of the king, "I have a present from my people to the king. Let me, I bid you, go into the palace and see him." They admitted Ehud into the palace, and he gave to the king a present; then he went out, but soon came back and said, "I have a message to the king that no one else can hear. Let me see the king alone. As he had just brought a present, they supposed that he was a friend to the king. Then, too, he had no sword on the side where men carried their swords. But, of course, Ehud was left-handed, and he carried on the other side a short, sharp, two-edged sword which he had especially made. The sword was out of sight under his garment on the side they did not anticipate. He went into the room where King Eglon was sitting alone, and he said, "I have a message from the Lord to you, and this is the message." And then he drew out his sword and drove it up to the handle into the king's body so suddenly that the king died without giving a sound. Ehud left the sword in the dead body of the king and went out quietly by the rear door. The servants of the king thought he was asleep in his room, and for a while did not go in to see why he was so still; but when they found him dead, Ehud was far away. Ehud blew a trumpet and called his people together, and led them against the Moabites. They were so helpless without their king that Ehud and his men easily drove them out of Israel and set the people free.
Ehud's two-edged sword with which he slew the king of the carnal mind represents the continuing development of Christ by His Word which is sharper than any two-edged sword. This is the Christ within who is THE WORD OF GOD. He is the LOGOS. "By the Word of the Lord were the heavens made" (Ps. 33:6). This is He who was in the beginning. "In the beginning was the Word" (Jn. 1:1). This is the Word that was God. In Him was life and the life was the light of men. This is He of whom it is written, "He sent His Word, and healed them." This is the Word that is sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit. In the book of Revelation He is represented as being armed with a sword, two-edged and sharp, passing out of His mouth, representing that His chief force lies in the action of His lips uttering words. His force is truth truth expressed by His mouth in words. He goes forth to battle wielding only the weapons of truth. Christ comes not to avenge blood or slay in battle as other conquerors have done. His Words smite all who hear them. As someone has said, it will smite them with conviction, and bless them with conversion. The spirit which animates Him is the warrior spirit. His object is the conquest of the world. He has formed the resolution never to cease from His campaign until the whole world, a conquered realm, bows devotedly before Him as its rightful Lord and Master, and only true King.
As the Christ of God is a many-membered body, so is the sword that goes out of His mouth. The Word of God is spoken in the world today by the body of Christ on earth, and that Word flows forth as the sound of many waters. There are not to be two swords one out of the mouth of the Lord, and the other out of the mouths of His ministers. There is one sword, and it is HIS. And this sword does not come out of the mouths of
only one or two of God's ministers, special ones who claim a higher revelation than all of God's prophets! Our quotation of scripture, our knowledge of the Bible, our study of ancient mysteries and teachings, and even our understanding of truth is not the sword of the Lord. The sword of the Lord is that Word which proceedeth only out of His mouth, and out of ours as we are MADE ONE IN HIM. The sword of the Lord bespeaks a purified people, holding forth the Word of Life in the power of the Holy Spirit, and how we praise God for this company!
This is not some carnal battle fought with carnal means, but the utterance of the Living Word of Truth which no man shall be able to disannul. Ah, how fleshly have been the swords by which the religious systems have conquered! In contradistinction, the Spirit of God is forming and fashioning a people, a glorious company, from whose lips flash forth that CLEAR WORD OF THE LORD which shall cause the traditions and unrighteousness of man to utterly come to nought. It was said of our Lord and elder brother, "Never man spake like this man" (Jn. 7:46). "What thing is this? what new doctrine is this? "FOR WITH AUTHORITY commandeth HE even the unclean spirits, and they do obey Him" (Mk. 1:27). "What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey Him!" (Mat. 8:27). That which was manifest in Jesus Christ shall also be seen in His many- membered- brethren- company. There are preview glimpses of this even in God's servants in the Old Testament. With what boldness did Elijah the prophet pronounce unto Ahab, "As the Lord God of Israel liveth, before whom I stand, there shall not be dew nor rain these years, BUT ACCORDING TO MY WORD" (I Kings 17:1). The pure and powerful Word of God shall cause His servants to ride victoriously. Nought shall be able to stand before the two-edged sword of H- I-S W- O- R- D. How glorious shall be the advance of this mighty company!
Fear not, my beloved. Have hope. Believe in hope! It is God's good pleasure to yet renew the face of the earth. Surely all these things shall come to an end. Sin shall end. Strife shall end. Pride shall end. Lust shall end. War shall end. Misery shall end. Sickness shall end. Sorrow and suffering shall end. Crime and violence shall end. Ignorance shall end. Tyranny and oppression shall end. Evil shall end. Death shall end. All the inhabitants of the world shall learn righteousness. Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more. The mountain of the house of the Lord shall be established in the tops of the mountains. All the kingdoms of this world shall become the Kingdom of our God and His Christ. Then they shall not hurt nor destroy in all His holy place. The rivers shall flow with His Life and the heavens shall drop down with the distilled dew of His Word. All the inhabitants of the world shall be without spot and blemish, loving one another, even as Jesus has loved us, for the lion nature shall lie down with the lamb nature. You, precious friend of mine, are called to be a part of the firstfruits of this victory, even if the total harvest has not yet come. You are to love your neighbor as yourself. You are to love your enemies and bless them that curse you and do good to them that hate you and stand as a priest on behalf of all creation. You are to wield the mighty sword of the Spirit. You are to eat abundantly and drink deeply of HIS incorruptible life and ride forth in majesty as the expression of God's Kingdom on earth. You are to utter His burning Word of authority, smiting the earth with the rod of His mouth. You are to speak judgment to all evil and life to all men everywhere. ARISE, EHUD, AND DELIVER THE PEOPLE!
Ehud hid his sword on his right side, the side of the spiritual mind or positive revelation of the Spirit. It was hidden in the mind of Christ. It was concealed within the spirit of hope and faith and understanding. After King Eglon had been slain, the servants of the king (flesh) did not know that their king was dead. While they waited around, Ehud (union) escaped and passed beyond their power. This tells me that while the world is waiting to see if Jesus really did conquer sin and death and hell, and while the church is waiting for a "rapture" to take them out of this world, there is a company of Left-Handed Sons of the Right Hand that is escaping the corruption that is in the world and moving spiritually beyond the limitations of the boundaries we have known, into the measure of the fullness of the stature of Christ. It is one thing to make a sword and it is another to use it to slay King Eglon. Another way of saying this is, it is one thing to hear the word and revelation of God, and quite another dimension of experience to personally appropriate it and use its authority to make an end of the king of carnality and death in our lives. Everything begins to change when the Christ of God reveals Himself from within your very being, leading you into the truth and vision that will deliver you from the bondage of old Adam and all the corruption he is subjected to. Christ will grow up IN us and AS us into His full stature and triumph. This is sonship, this is salvation, this is our hope and the hope of the groaning creation, praise His wonderful name!
THE RIGHT HAND OF GOD
The right hand of God is the ANOINTED HAND of God for CHRIST sits at the RIGHT HAND OF GOD, and CHRIST means THE ANOINTED. Paul tells us that we are to seek those things which are above WHERE CHRIST SITS AT THE RIGHT HAND OF GOD. This means that we are to SEEK THE THINGS OF THE RIGHT HAND! Reigning with Christ must become one of the great goals in the life of every man or woman apprehended to sonship to God. What is the power of the right hand? Paul tells us something about it in Eph. 1:16-23. "...that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him: the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of His calling, and what the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the EXCEEDING GREATNESS OF HIS POWER to usward who believe, according to the working of His mighty power, WHICH HE WROUGHT IN CHRIST, WHEN HE RAISED HIM FROM THE DEAD, AND SET HIM AT HIS OWN RIGHT HAND IN THE HEAVENLY PLACES, far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come: and hath put ALL THINGS UNDER HIS FEET, and gave Him to be the head over all things to the church, which is HIS BODY, THE FULLNESS OF HIM THAT FILLETH ALL IN ALL."
We find in this passage that there is an exceeding greatness of power that is toward us. This is God's inheritance in the saints and it is rich in glory! We do not naturally know or realize just what this power is or just what it can do, so in these words Paul by the Spirit gives us a measure by which we can have a little idea of just what this power is and what it is able to do for us, in us, and through us. Let us see! The power that is directed to us is according to a power that God wrought in the Christ. It is that power by which God raised up the Christ from the dead and SET HIM AT HIS OWN RIGHT HAND. By this power God set the Christ far above all principality, all power, all might, all dominion, and every name that is named not only in this world but in the ages to come. This power that God used for the raising up of the Christ has put all things under His feet and made Him to be the Head over all to the church. And the church, His many-membered body, is the FULL DEVELOPMENT OF GOD, as we read in the translation of the Diaglott.
The power of God that Paul describes is the rule by which is measured the power God has for all who will follow on to be filled with all the fullness of God. The power that God has for us is just the same in quality and character and quantity as is the power of God used far the raising up of the Christ and the placing of Him at the right hand. Therefore, be assured, beloved, that the power that God has toward us and for us will do for us JUST EXACTLY WHAT THAT POWER THAT GOD HAD FOR JESUS CHRIST DID FOR HIM. In other words, the power God has toward us will also RAISE US FROM THE DEAD AND SET US AT HIS OWN RIGHT HAND. It will set us far above all principality, all power, all might, all dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this world or age but in the world and ages to come. It will put all things under our feet and give us dominion over all the works of God's hands, both earthly and heavenly, visible and invisible. This in no way detracts from the glory, authority, or preeminence of Jesus Christ. Rather, it is the FULFILLMENT OF HIS MINISTRY as HE moves in and through His many-membered body, the "many brethren" brought to His very own glory.
There are certain basic principles of the Kingdom of God that must be a part of the frame of mind and the experience of all who press forward into sonship to God. We must learn to think like God. We must begin to rule with Christ in this life. Too many saints are weak, frustrated, and defeated. May the dynamite of God's Spirit blow us all out of the low places of lethargy, discouragement, oppression, and defeat into a vibrant walk with Christ in the high places of peace, joy, and triumph of His Kingdom. "...strengthen yourselves in the Lord and in the power which His supreme might imparts. Put on the complete armour of God, so as to be able to stand firm against all the stratagems of the devil. For ours is not a conflict with mere flesh and blood, but with the despotisms, the empires, the forces that govern and control this dark world the spiritual hosts of evil arrayed against us in the heavenly warfare. Therefore put on the complete armour of God, so that you may be able to stand your ground in the evil day, and, having fought to the end, TO REMAIN VICTORS ON THE FIELD" (Eph. 6:10-14, Weymouth).
Once the believer embraces the truth that he is now seated with Christ at the right hand of God in the higher than all heavens, his heart will find rest and joy and confidence in the face of all situations and circumstances. The right hand of God is the place of omnipotent universal power and dominion FAR ABOVE ALL THINGS! Such all-embracing majesty is far too vast for my feeble understanding, yet I know by the Spirit that the body of Christ is being formed and prepared for the explicit purpose of UNIVERSAL DOMINION. But how can a man rule over principalities and powers and empires and universes if he cannot rule his own spirit? "He that ruleth his own spirit is better than he that taketh a city" (Prov. 16:32). God is a God of principle. He does not do anything by chance. It is my deep conviction that what happens in your life and mine is a result of the use or abuse of the principles of the Kingdom of God. Learn this, beloved, and you will know one of the fundamental
principles of reigning with Christ: OUR AUTHORITY IS OVER SPIRITUAL WICKEDNESS F-I-R-S-T-L-Y I-N O-U-R-S-E-L-V-E-S!
Our first great battle is within ourselves. For if our dominion over our own spirit is to be perfect, then every thought, desire, and impulse must be brought into subjection to Christ. This discipline will be an attribute of the mind of Christ within, and when this is in effect, then we will be able to expel every mutineer, or every thought, attitude, and emotion which rises up against the knowledge of God. Our great training in throneship authority takes place in the bringing of our own selves into conformity to the Christ. We have got to look at and deal with ourselves first. Then as we are victorious overcomers in the different phases of our own lives, there comes a very real sense of victory and authority over other powers, whatever they may be and wherever they may be found. It is a great fact deliver yourself of it first and then you will have complete AUTHORITY over the same problem or spirit or power anywhere else! You will never have power over spiritual wickedness in the high places of this world order and the cosmos, you will never be able to deliver your brethren, or cities, or nations into the Kingdom of God until first every wicked and rebellious spirit within your own nature has been subdued to the Spirit of the Christ within.
Simply speaking, the purpose of God is that we might reign for Him and as Him, and to reign is to exercise the authority of God to rule all things. All who in Christ appropriate the fullness of His life and glory and exaltation are destined to administer that awesome dominion, seated together with Him at the right hand of God. This is the blueprint and strategy for the triumph of His Kingdom in all realms, from the lowest hell to the highest heaven. Ah, dear ones, we shall reign throughout the ages of the ages over all the vastnesses of infinity until every enemy everywhere is conquered and Christ is all in all. But we must begin to reign with Him here and N-O-W! You may be at the right hand of God and yet not have walked out all the reality and potential and power and authority of that realm. You must begin to walk out that reality right in that small and undistinguished place where you are. The thing that limits and frustrates and troubles you most right where you are, in the nitty- gritty of everyday experience is the place to start! Reign with Him there! It may be an attitude, a habit, a weakness, an emotion, a lust, or the sin which so easily besets but it was not placed there by God to destroy you it was designed to be your STEPPING STONE TO THE THRONE!
Thank God! there is a RIGHT HAND COMPANY, those indwelt by THE SON OF THE RIGHT HAND, daily growing and increasing in the nature, wisdom, and power of HIS LORDSHIP. This company is the manifestation of GOD'S RIGHT HAND OF BLESSING AND DOMINION in the earth today, and this right hand shall do even much more valiantly as the sons of God press on in to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ. This present time is but a proving ground for those who through grace will reign with their Lord over all the endless vastnesses of infinity. He is raising us up and teaching us to sit with Him in the higher than heavenlies, gaining victory upon victory as we learn what it is to reign. And the place which He has prepared for each one is not only a world to come, and a Kingdom of light and love, but a place IN HIM, bone of His bone, flesh of His flesh, spirit of His spirit, nature of His nature, mind of His mind, wisdom of His wisdom, power of His power LIFE OF HIS LIFE! Glory to His wonderful name!
To be continued...J. PRESTON EBY
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