Just a word to invite everyone to my most active site, where I’m just beginning a series called: “A Warrior sat under the Willow Tree”. Hope you will “click” and join us there. willowtreewisdom.home.blog
So is it just a strange coincidence that every major move of the Old Covenant has darkness connected to it? Please read previous article if you have not, where we began laying a foundation for this teaching, and now we continue, by looking at the individual examples, starting with the fall of Adam and Eve, and where God first mentions one who will come and crush the devil’s head.
Our goal is to point out how darkness was connected to each of the major moves. So with the fall of Adam and Eve, lets set the stage. We’re talking Genesis chapter 3. Eve listens to the snake in the tree, partakes of forbidden fruit, gives to Adam, and he listens to Eve thereby disobeying God and opening mankind up for sin and death! So what is important for our first point begins in verse 8, where it says : “When the cool evening breezes were blowing, the man and his wife heard the Lord God walking about in the garden.” (And this is when they try to hide.)
This is also where I first was struck with the idea of Covenant of Darkness, because it seemed logical to me that if it’s already “evening”, cool evening breezes, then by the time God calls Adam out, and each of them try to explain what has happened, and then God begins giving out the judgement for the offense, in which he also speaks of a seed that will be born of the woman to do what? Crush the head of the devil. This is prophetic. It is referring to salvation in Christ, which pertains to both the Old and New Covenants. This is given in verse 15, setting this as the first major announcement of the Covenant. And you can bet Satan knew what this meant and began watching for this child from that very day forward! Perhaps he thought Abel was the one!
But logically speaking, after all this is accomplished, then God made clothes for them from animal skins, and considered what would happen if they ate of the Tree of Life in their fallen condition. After all this, Adam and Eve are finally expelled from the garden. Logic seems to dictate it would be dark by this time. Also, it would be more “fitting” for it to be dark as they are expelled, because they have fallen from the light and entered into darkness. As the gate of Eden opens and they prepare to leave, nothing but darkness is before them. This is what got me to thinking.
Because scripture does not actually say it was dark, it never really occurred to me before. But when it did suddenly dawn on me, my curiosity began to run with this thought. The fact that the Old Covenant only proves man guilty and worthy of hell and darkness, caused me to wonder if God connected darkness to all of it? And it seems he did!
Abraham would be the next major move, and this example is very plain and bold! Almost right in your face! Because there seems to be no good reason to wait for darkness to fall, and yet God does! Genesis chapter 15. This is a major major move! This is where God cuts the Covenant with Abraham. He has him sacrifice several animals and lay the bodies out on the ground, where the two covenant partners will walk through those dead bodies and enter covenant.
According to verse 10, Abraham prepares the sacrifices and all is ready. Now he is waiting. In verse 11, some vultures begin swooping down looking for a free meal, and Abraham has to start fighting them away! Where is God? What is he waiting for?
In verse 12 it plainly says, “As the sun was going down Abram fell into a deep sleep, and a terrifying darkness came down over him.” (Then God begins speaking to him prophetic words concerning his future family.)
Verse 17 then very plainly says, “After the sun went down and darkness fell, Abram saw a smoking firepot and a flaming torch pass between the halves of the carcasses.”
“After the sun went down and darkness fell…” God was waiting on the darkness? And Adam and Eve went forth in the promise of a seed of the woman, but they went forth into the darkness? And notice, Abraham himself never passed through the carcasses. I believe the smoking firepot and flaming torch represented God the Father and God the Son as they made covenant between themselves as to the fulfillment of the first covenant and the salvation of man through the second covenant in Christ! God knew man could only fall short. We would never be able to fulfill the standard of that first covenant ourself. That Covenant is only darkness to us, and the promise/hope of a Savior!
But as Abram was fighting off the vultures that day, I wonder what he was thinking? As he grew more and more weary, what was he thinking? What would you be thinking? Everything was ready, and yet where was God? What could possibly be the hold up? And as he fell into unconsciousness, was he worried he might be failing God? The sacrifices might be in danger? And yet it seems God had purpose in it all, and had Abram been privy to what we know today, he may well have known God would not be showing up until the darkness.
So… we have two more major moves yet to come. We will share those in Part 3. And we will also take a very quick look at how every major move of the New Covenant in Christ appears to always be full of LIGHT! I guess it only makes sense, doesn’t it? But to think our God actually goes to such trouble, to set up many symbolic clues for us to see and understand. How many ways does he paint the picture for us, and yet we fail to see the fullness of his greatness. What an awesome God we serve. And to think we were created by Him. We can be born-again into Him. We can be His children. That’s far greater than any lottery a man could ever hit. And we do not have to depend on chance! It is by choice! Our own free choice, God has given! Amen!
Now days I spend most of my time working on my site “Setting Under the Willow Tree”. There has been much written at this site pertaining to deeper things, and there is much for a person to read. But if you would enjoy some things on the lighter side of our Christianity, and with an emphasis on keeping it simple, you are invited to join us under the willow tree by simply clicking on willowtreewisdom.home.blog
I have known for a long time, the Old Covenant, the Old Testament in our Bible, is darkness to man, not salvation. And because it is full of a lot of good laws by which to conduct society, and the ungodly, we do not realize its death to us.
From the very beginning, the first covenant was meant for man to fail, and God to fulfill!
How many times have you asked someone if they are a Christian, and they answer by saying they try to live by the 10 Commandments? This only reveals their lack of understanding of God, God’s Word, and God’s way of salvation; for the Covenant of the Laws only prove us guilty! Worthy of judgement! No man has ever successfully kept the Old Covenant save Jesus Christ Himself, God Himself! Which He did in order to save us from the judgement our failure deemed us worthy of! And that judgement is based upon the First Covenant, with all the “thou shalt nots”, and “thou shalts”!
Please consider this scripture as a first step in understanding this very important biblical concept: “So if the priesthood of Levi, on which the law was based, could have achieved the perfection God intended, why did God need to establish a different priesthood, with a priest in the order of Melchizedek instead of the order of Levi and Aaron? And if the priesthood is changed, the law must also be changed to permit it.” (Hebrews 7: 11-12 NLT)
Jesus is the beginning of a different priesthood, which the Bible describes as a priesthood after the order of Melchizedek, a very mysterious person who shows up for Abraham way back in Genesis 14! Jesus begins a different priesthood because he established a very different Covenant, which we enter into through Him! And whereas the first Covenant was based on 10 Commandments, our Lord’s Covenant is based on only 2! And we will look at the very different nature of the 10 and the 2, for there is great purpose and meaning in that difference!
As a first step in understanding this difference, please note our scripture speaks of a “perfection” God intended in that first covenant. As every human well knows, we do not do well with that word, “perfect”. In our world there is no such thing as perfect, especially in the behavior of man!
Jesus spoke of this perfection in his famous Sermon on the Mount, in Matthew 5: 48, when he said, “But you are to be perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect.”
But how are we to achieve such perfection? It certainly cannot be done by way of the First Covenant. That was why Jesus was here. To fulfill that Covenant and that perfection for us, and establish a new order of priesthood and a New Covenant, powerful enough in “His” perfection and “His” blood to save a true Believer! Wow! Is that awesome or what! But this also means the First Covenant is only failure for us! It is defeat, judgement, darkness, no hope, no light, no heaven! Only hell!
It did bring the One who is Light to us. Praise God! And that was God’s plan from the beginning. It does save us in a round-about way, if we realize that First Covenant is pointing towards Christ the whole time! It is meant to be as a school master teaching us the way to salvation, but it is not the salvation we need in itself. It announces the salvation to come, and gives us many lessons and warnings as to why we should not neglect the great salvation to come, for we do not want to die in the Covenant of Law! The Covenant of Moses! But we rejoice in the coming of God’s Covenant of Grace in Christ Jesus!
“There is a way that seems right to man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.”
Man always seems to think he can do it himself. That is our own logic and our natural way, unless we understand how defiled we are, and how far short of perfection we fall. The Bible teaches if you break even one of the Commandments, you are guilty of breaking all! And Jesus added to the difficulty of the challenge when again, in His Sermon on the Mount, he said if you even look at a woman with lust, you are guilty of adultery! If you are angry with someone, you commit murder! The mark of perfection is so high, man was without hope!
Now that we have established the basic understanding of how the Old Covenant is not life to us, but death; I can now begin explaining how I came to call the First Covenant, the “Covenant of Darkness”. I never called it this, nor did I even think of it in this way, until one day I realized by the time Adam and Eve got kicked out of the Garden of Eden, it had to be dark! Once I realized this, I became curious if all the major moves of the Old Covenant had darkness involved, and it did! I was amazed! And I realized that once again God was showing us more truth! It was more than my own curiosity, but the Holy Spirit was leading me.
So… you can begin looking at it yourself if you like, but next episode (P-2) we will look at Adam and Eve’s expulsion, and every major move of the Old Covenant thereafter, clear up to Jesus completing the Old Covenant Himself, on the cross. You might recall God brought three hours of darkness in the middle of the day in that event! And three hours is no simple eclipse!
And why is this so important? Because Jesus brought us the Covenant of Light. You will also see that every major move of the New Covenant, such as Christ’s resurrection, is performed in light! These cannot be mere happenstance! And so… if we try to pull anything from the Covenant of Darkness and force it into the Covenant of Light? Are we not guilty of forcing darkness into God’s light? But who does that, you might ask.
Well… our modern church does not even realize the love of money they are guilty of, which is the root of all evil! The New Covenant in Christ is based on two very different commands than the original 10. We are to LOVE God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength. And we are to LOVE our neighbor as ourself. The early church established by Christ functioned on LOVE OFFERINGS. Even the Pastors lived off LOVE OFFERINGS. When did tithing come back into things? Is it possible it was drug from the old and forced into the new because of the greed of man? We do not even realize how many ways we may be bringing law into God’s love and liberty.
I have pondered if this is even a slap in the face of Jesus as he hung on that cross paying the price for us to live in liberty and Spirit. I fear to answer that with a yes, but I see the possibility. We have a warped version of Jesus and as a result, we create warped disciples. Jesus said an easy yoke and light burden, and yet we make church a heavy thing, full of lifeless programs, boring repetitious routines, and very little true liberty and relationship.
Once upon a time I was excited when God revealed all this to me. But today I had to force myself to obey God and begin the work of putting this out there, because I have already shown this to others, only to find they are so programmed they can no longer look at scriptures for themselves and actually see what they say. Either that, or they just don’t care that much. I usually encounter one of the two.
So… I’m making this effort because I believe this is way more important than the reaction I usually get, and someone has to keep shouting that the “King Theology” has no clothes! Laodicea has no clothes! We should be looking to Smyrna! It is a very dangerous time to be Laodicean! But can the programmed ever see?
There is much more to show in the proving of this message. I know I have only begun to give you solid evidence of what I have said. I hope you realize the importance of this enough, that if you still have doubts, you will come back to examine all the evidence. But for now this is enough of the elephant for any person to eat in one setting. Chew on the fact Jesus changed the priesthood and the laws, because the First Covenant was never intended for us to succeed, but only fail. It is not based on LOVE, but LAW and PERFECT FULFILLMENT. This meal is to be continued…soon. Comments welcome.
I discovered a treasure hidden away in the midst of congested streets, traffic jams, stress, and rising blood pressure. Its been there for years and I never knew, it is so well hidden. Evidently few people have found it because every time I go there, it is void of people! I enjoy it all to myself. Whoever owns it must be always working and never able to enjoy his hidden treasure. It is as a Garden of Eden in the midst of a concrete jungle.
This place inspired me to start a second blog site. “Path Without End” has always been a place to go deep into God’s Word, and we’re about to start a series called “Covenant of Darkness”. However, the new site is meant to be more light-hearted and fun. A place about dreams, and for dreamers. It is meant to inspire a life full of the joy of the Lord, peace, and spirit. It has a subtitle of “Simplicity, Serenity, Spirit, – and growing older”.
One of my dreams is to travel America (on the cheap) and ride my bike in many places while visiting Salt Churches. I have a plan and it is already in operation. We write of these things on the other site I named: “Sitting Under the Willow Tree”. I hope you will visit under the willow tree. Here is a link to the site, followed by a few pictures:
The wind still blows under the willow tree, but who today ever takes the time to sit and listen? Let us be one of the few.
Black Elk Speaks > Chapter 10 > “Walking the Black Road” >
“Wherever we went, the soldiers came to kill us, and it was all our own country. It was ours already when the Wasichus (white man) made the treaty with Red Cloud, that said it would be ours as long as the grass should grow and water flow. That was only eight winters before, and they were chasing us now because we remembered and they forgot.”
Do we think we’re different now? White man found yellow metal in those hills, and nothing, not their word, not laws or right or wrong would stop them. Are we saved today by the teachings of Jesus? Then why do I see the same in the Church!? Have we forgot? Have we forgot what Jesus said and did? Hey Preacher living in your wealth! Have you forgot? Have you distorted what Jesus said and did? Have you distorted his Word? Have you twisted the truth until it is true no more?
These are but a few of the things that drove me out of of our modern Churches to begin a simple path in which two joined me. One had been a devout Catholic all his life, and never baptized in the way the Bible actually says. He asked me to baptize him, and we did. It was simple, meaningful, and my great honor to do so.
So we started a small group of three, called it a “Fellowship”, and named it “Fellowship of the White Path”, because Jesus walked the red path of his own blood, so that we might walk the white path of his own righteousness.
We also began having a proper Passover every year, according to what your Bible still says, and I believe God is very pleased in our effort to do the best we can with what we have learned as we study early Church, those first 300 years, of which man seems to have tried to muddy the waters of history, so it can be difficult to see. But once the maze begins to open up, a lot of light begins shining in very rapidly, even as a flood!
How much of what we did to the native American Indian is still in us? We try to deny it, but what do our actions so plainly reveal? Our actions betray us! They betray our words to be nothing but lies! When will our hands be clean? Not till we actually live what we profess, and flee those leaders who do not!
I see so much greed in the Church where it should never be! But it is. Where are the Pastors living on faith and love offerings today? Where are the Pastors developing disciples ready to split a group and multiply, for the sake of keeping it as family, and the sake of Gospel Propagation as the early Church did? No group should be bigger than what a Pastor can properly pray for, and a family atmosphere can maintain. We are the family of God, not a copy of worldly ways who love money, numbers, and an image of success.
As mentioned before, I am working towards starting a Podcast on this subject, as someone suggested I should do. We have our equipment now. We have downloaded “Audacity” and hooked up to it. We slowly progress, but I still have things to learn before we achieve this goal, and these technologies do not come easy for me, but if God’s will is in it, it shall be done.
I think it’s pretty obvious now how my trip to the Black Hills seeking God, and God leading me to a book by a very wise man named Black Elk, has helped confirm many things to me about a path I was already seeking, and had begun, without even knowing, and how I eventually discover we are very similar to what is now being called Micro Church. I need not write more on this at this time. It was a strange path perhaps, by what would be modern standards, but it has led here, nonetheless. It amazes me.
I have it in me to begin a series called, “The Covenant of Darkness”. It’s about the Old Testament and how from the beginning it was designed for man to fail, and God to fulfill, so that we might have a covenant actually bringing salvation. Jesus not only saves us from our sin, but also the judgement of the Old Covenant, an eye for an eye. For us to drag anything of law from that covenant is as a slap in the face of Christ, and what he died for, to bring us the New. It is as if we practice Judaism, rather than Christianity, and this includes the teaching of tithing. Drug from the Old, it can not be supported from the New, unless you are a Pharisee.
We live in a day when the love of money has twisted much. More Churches are like Laodicea than Smyrna. And Smyrna holds a great key to unlocking the man-made-Maze! We need to get back to our early Church fathers. We need to get back to the disciples of the disciples. We need to get back to the Apostles and what our Bible actually says. We need to get back to Jesus!
“Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.” (Jeremiah 6:16)
Just thought I’d throw this out here on a Saturday. I know it’s not the best time when people are so busy, but maybe this is just for a few. Help others find it if you think it is of God. We will continue “Journey to Micro Church” and Black Elk soon, but for today, here’s a poem that may not rhyme, but full of very power poetic thought. I hope you enjoy. This poem holds the key to everything!
“Let the Eagle Soar”
Surrender is the greatest fight.
The “Fight of No-Fight!”
Transformation is the goal, not an easy task. When God’s passions become our own? We are transformed!
Filled with God…full of light.
On fire with passion, but not our own! Surrender brings a sweet release, but only when unto God.
No more stress, just faith… No more fighting, just flowing… No more losing, just living and fulfilling.
What have I to lose, once I’ve given every thing? If I claim to have surrendered, all fight ceases, right?
But has it?
Surrender is powerful! It moves the supernatural! It levels mountains! Anything less is tainted of man, becoming mortal…something weak…something falling short of God!
But surrender has its expectations.
It demands composure. In the face of fear and doubt, it expects faith and peace.
In the face of sacrifice and pain it demands courage and forward motion.
It demands LOVE. Not empty promises.
Delivered completely into God’s hands. What better place to be? We are the fallen leaf embraced by powerful stream, and carried to His oceans.
Do we fight our soul’s desire?
Self melts… to become one with God.
This is the power of transformation. This is the power of supernatural. To let go, and yet we win! To give up all, only to discover the greatest treasure! God Himself.
To surrender all and yet discover everything; everything that means anything. No longer deceived we are finally free to live the greatest fight! The Fight of No-Fight!
And enjoy the greatest flight.
Let the Eagle Soar. They that wait upon the Lord.
There were a few things driving me from our modern Church system. One: The complex and business like nature it had become. I was looking for the simplicity of Christ, not complexity. Jesus was simple and deep, not complex and shallow, and so should his Church be. But most Churches today are completely “program” oriented, rather than the simplicity of flowing in the Holy Spirit.
Two: Along with the business like system, came a constant need for money. Somehow pastors were no longer living by faith and love offerings, as the early church did, but built mansions, ate expensive meals, drove luxury cars, fine clothes, had 401k, retirement funds, investments, and all while preaching about the one who taught us to be nonmaterialistic and help others. These big Churches were money hungry machines teaching a different Jesus than the Apostle Paul taught! (II Cor. 11:3-6)
Third: Jesus shifted us away from stone cold temples to the family warmth of tables in homes. He sat and ate with sinners. He got thrown out of temples. He showed us a Church “family”, not a congregation. But Rome and Constantine took us back into those cold temples, not Jesus, or the Apostles, or the early Church fathers of the first 300 years!
I could make quite a list of reasons, actually. The stage platforms, all the shish, boom, bah, and hype. Manipulation. Etc, etc. But so much of it seems to come back to the ego and pride of man, and a love for money, though they deny all this.
Black Elk experienced this first-hand in his day. Let me continue a couple of his quotes, and it will be very obvious what I’m referring to.
Black Elk > “But if the vision was true and mighty, as I know, it is true and mighty yet; for such things are of the spirit, and it is in the darkness of their eyes that men get lost.” (Black Elk Speaks – Chapter One).
(Black Elk Speaks – Chapter Seven) > “Afterward I learned that it was Pahuska (General Custer) who had led his soldiers into the Black Hills that summer to see what he could find. He had no right to be in there, because all that country was ours. Also the Wasichus (basically referring to the white man) had made a treaty with Red Cloud (1868) which said it would be ours as long as the grass should grow and water flow. Later I learned too that Pahuska had found there much of the yellow metal that makes the Wasichus crazy; and that is what made the bad trouble, just as it did before, when the hundred were rubbed out.”
It is in the darkness of their eyes that men get lost. I love the way he says that. And the yellow metal that makes the white man crazy! Indeed, indeed. Some things never change, but it ought not be so in the family of God!
The love of money. Ego and money are such temptations for man. I spoke to a lady the other day, who has struggled all her life to keep bills paid, while her Pastor is currently building himself a mansion; complete with vaulted ceilings, spiral staircase, a lake right out the patio doors, I mean really really nice. I asked her what she thought of this? She shrugged her shoulders and said, “Oh well.”
The old story of the King who thought he was wearing fine clothes, but was actually walking around naked, but no one would say anything, because of whatever reasons they may have had, until a young boy asked too loudly, “Why is the King walking around naked?” And the crowd was shocked!
These are a few of the reasons I left and simply went to God’s word in my Bible and began seeking simple truth. It’s there! And early Church fathers verify it all in early records written, and so much more! The fork of the road leading to the Dark Ages is there! And we are repeating much of history today, but for some reason, few there be who are willing to point out the naked king and offer real solutions.
This was all part of my early journey as I sought God in the Black Hills. That book came home with me, from South Dakota to Indiana. I was amazed at the greed, the love of money, the needless slaughter of the bison, the Indian’s food! For the love of money! And I see that same ugliness in our modern religious system! And we shrug our shoulders and say, “Oh well?” I can no longer do that.
I hadn’t been home long when God led me to download 5,000 pages of early Church history and begin my studies. How enlightening it was. Men like Polycarp, disciple of the Apostle John. And events that were taking place at that time. Decisions being made. The path to the Dark Ages, but not till 300 AD!
So how did we stray from a Church that turned the world upside down, to a Church acting like the Roman Empire?! Hhmmm. Well…you can bet pride, power, and money had a lot to do with it. Few there be who was pointing out the naked king, and those who were, were not of the popular opinion, but time certainly proved them right. Those who had wisdom, those who spoke the obvious truth, those who were right, were ignored and pushed aside, their voices silenced!
But today…the Internet…easy access to information, books, historical records… podcasting… the truth is getting out there… knowledge is spreading… some are asking about the naked kings… a revival is building, but not in the big Church buildings. This modern system is too much like a copy of the world. It has become a millstone around our neck showing the world a different Jesus. Not the one who walked Jerusalem in the day, and died on a bloody cross, without a place to even be buried.
Yes, much of what an old Indian before my time had to say, speaks to me. God surprised me with that. Black Elk speaks, and so does God! Of the seven Churches of Revelation, are we Smyrna or Laodicea? The answer seems obvious to me, but not to those still applauding naked kings. It’s time to awaken, light your lamps, and see if your light is true, or dies? When was the last time you got away from all the rat race and shish-boom-bah, and went out somewhere “simple”, alone with God, and heard his “whispers”? This is where my journey to Micro Church began, though at the time, I had no idea.