Are We Ready to Stand in the Gap as God’s Watchman?

“Hey Ezekiel, up on the wall?  What do  you see?  Something good?”

Anyone called to be God’s watchman

wishes he didn’t have to say:  yeah, good … grief!

Today we might expect the difference between good and evil to be a cavernous gap, but actually it’s becoming so blurred so that many can’t tell the difference (Isa. 5:20).  It’s getting harder to stand in the gap today!

Satan deceives the whole world (Rev. 12:9) and is the unseen ruler of this world who needs to be impeached.  Alas, that won’t happen until Jesus Christ removes him probably 10 days into His millennial rule on the Day of Atonement (Rev. 20:1-3).  Until then, not many will heed the watchman’s warning, but we must warn anyway.

We wish we could tell them smooth things (Isa.30:10)—what they want to hear so we’d be popular and praised and sent viral on social media.   “Just believe in the Lord.”  Yes, but even the demons believe and tremble (James 2:19).   “Just give  your heart to the Lord.”  Jesus said why call Me Lord, Lord, and don’t do what I say?  (Luke 6:46).

“All roads lead to heaven.”  Jesus said no one but Him has ever been on that road (John 3:13).   People will not live in heaven or eternal hellfire after they die.  People do not have an immortal soul, but as Ezekiel explains, they are a soul that will die (18:4) and eventually be resurrected.  He gives the amazing truth about the Second Resurrection (Ezk. 37).  Ezekiel ends his book with glorious news about the millennial temple and the Kingdom of God on earth, which has always been for the meek to inherit (Matt. 5:5).

Except for a Dallas Cowboys running back, I don’t know of anybody named Ezekiel, meaning “God is strong.”  Maybe you were given a pretty good name to live up to, but then you will have to watch it that you always realize of your own self you can do nothing, but you can do all things only through Jesus Christ who strengthens you (Php. 4:13).

We will need to trust God completely

for the needed strength to confront our fellow Israelites about their rebellion.  “Rebellion?  What rebellion?  We’re God’s people!  We’re Judaeo-Christian!  We have the Bible and our missionaries have circulated it around the world.  We have done our best to police the world.”

The Jews around Ezekiel in captivity thought God would never allow Jerusalem or its temple to fall.   Ezekiel’s commission was actually to the “House of Israel (3:1),” which he did not reach back then because the 10 tribes had been taken captive by the Assyrians about 130 years earlier.

Building the Family of God adJesus said He was sent to the “lost sheep of the House of Israel” (Matt. 15:24) and He sent His disciples to the same (Matt. 10:6).   That’s us today!

James addressed his book to the “12 tribes scattered among the nations” (1:1).   We must take Ezekiel, James, and the whole Bible really to the whole world (Matt. 24:13, 28:18-20), but especially strong to the nations of all 12 tribes of Israel which God expects to be the example to the Gentiles.

We must lift up our voices like a trumpet and tell my people their sins (Isa. 58:1).

God is going to punish for two specific major sins:

Sabbath-breaking and idolatry (Ezk. 20).  Idolatry is far more than wooden figures to worship, but rather, anything that comes between us and God.  Even us watchmen have to watch ourselves closely on that one and ask God to deliver us from “secret” sins (Psa. 19:12).

The 4th Commandment has always been “the test commandment” (Exo. 16).  Most societies appreciate the good in the other Nine, but don’t want to submit to that 4th one!  Most who submit themselves to keeping God’s Sabbath will then see that He also expects us to keep “sabbaths“—plural (Ezk. 20:12)!—His Annual Sabbaths (Lev. 23)—and why wouldn’t He?  We have to keep these annual Holy Days to understand His awesome plan of salvation.

What’s the big deal?  Ezekiel in the end-time has to give the House of Israel the numbing shocking news that they are going to suffer famine and disease leading to cannibalism (Lev. 26:29), conquest by military invasion, and then national captivity (Ezk. 5:1-4).   Her cities will be destroyed (6:6), you’d have to think by nuclear means.  The curses of Lev. 26 and Deut. 28 are coming with increasing intensity.  Amos 5:3 and Isa. 6:11-13 add that only 1/10 will be left—tithing is consistently important to God.  Most don’t see God’s hand in giving victories in the past, thinking it was by our military and economic might.  Who more than the modern English-speaking peoples of the United States,  Great Britain, Canada, Australia, and others think they are invincible.  As the old saying goes, the bigger they are, the harder they fall.  The Gentiles are eager for their “time.”

Christ’s disciples today, committed to fulfilling Ezekiel’s commission in the end-time, will need God to make us properly tough even as we “sigh and cry for all the abominations done in Israel” (9:6).  Honestly, who can sigh and cry that much.

Christianity isn’t for wimps

Will you be strong for God to use?  Are you a watchman willing to “stand in the gap before Me on behalf of the land, that I should not destroy it” (Ezk. 22:30)?

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Are We Ready to Be the Ezekiel This World Needs Right Now?

Probably not.  OK, make that no.

But with God’s help all things are possible, and here I am trying to be an Ezekiel.  I hope you are up for such a magnificent calling too!  And part of an Ezekiel work that God has commissioned to go to “the House of Israel” as their watchman:  a sentry alerting them to danger from without and within (Ezek. 3 and 33).

Yes, another commission!  For any of us having the guts to strive to be a Christian.  Add it to the two great ones in Matt. 24:14 and 28:18-20.   I’m not going to quote them for you because if we are serious to take them on, we need to put out the effort to look them up and internalize them.

Last time we talked about how, to go to the “House of Israel,” we have to know who that is in today’s world.  Many of you following this blog are part of it and don’t know it.  If you don’t clearly understand those two items, please follow the above link and find out, before reading on.

I just watched an interesting 45-minute documentary titled “Europeans Are the ‘Lost’ Tribes of Israel—a Rare Documentary.  The producer appears to be the British-Israel World Federation.

Are we up to these three challenges? 

Leading Us to Our Glorious Destiny adGod’s flock is “little” (Luke 12:32).  The way is narrow and hard and few find it (Matt. 7:13-14).

Well, as the amusing song by Michael Martin Murphey puts it so well, “if we want to walk on water, we have to get out of the boat!”  And if we want to serve as God’s called watchmen, we have to get:  up on the wall!

Both Ezekiel and Jeremiah were priests called to also be prophets.  Ezekiel started at age 30 (Num. 4:3) just like Jesus started His last 3-1/2 year commission.   I’ll have to make do at 69!

When I think of a priest, I wrongly imagine a pious man decked out in holy garb with miter, swinging around a canister of incense and muttering Latin.  So though I took Latin I, it’s hard to see myself as one of God’s priests.  And a prophet?  In my day-to-day life I’m doing good to know what’s happening past a week ahead.

But Peter says God will use us as priest and prophet.  “You are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood” (1 Pet. 2:9).  God is preparing us to be His priests who will serve in the Millennium (Rev. 5:10).  And God has given us “the prophetic word confirmed, which you do well to heed as a light that shines in a dark place” (2 Pet. 1:19).  We must study Ezekiel, live it and teach it!

God encourages and strengthens us to fulfill His commissions

For Ezekiel, God started from birth with his name.  Ezekiel’s name means “God is strong” or “God strengthens.”

It’s amazing how characters in the Bible always seem to have just the appropriate name for what they do.  How did God work that out?  Well, He’s God!

It’s interesting—and easy to do on the Internet—to discover what your name means.  Have you done it?

My Dad and Mom named me:  Robert = “glory, bright, fame”; Earl = “set to rule a territory in a king’s stead”; and Curry = “champion, hero.”  What a name to live up to!  I probably should stick to that instead of Broose the Moose.  I aim to bring God glory by being God’s champion serving wherever the King of Kings positions me to serve in His Kingdom coming to this earth!

So I want to shout from the wall:  Your Kingdom Come!

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What If President Trump Quoted David for His Tweets

In many of the Psalms, especially those written by David, it sounds like what President Trump  experiences on a daily basis.

Perhaps the President should quote David in his tweets, such as Psalm 109 in the New Living Translation:

Tweet:  “O God, whom I praise, don’t stand silent and aloof while the wicked slander me and tell lies about me.  They surround me with hateful words and fight against me for no reason.  I love them, but they try to destroy me with accusations even as I am praying for them!” (verses 1-4).

I believe President Trump looks to God and prays.   A Facebook post a few days ago said he just signed an executive order to restore permission to pray voluntarily in school!

Prayer eBook adWho knows if he is converted enough to pray for enemies?   How many of us can manage that?

Tweet “They say, ‘Get an evil person to turn against him.  Send an accuser to bring him to trial.  When his case comes up for judgment, let him be pronounced guilty … Let his years be few; let someone else take his position … I am a joke to people everywhere; when they see me, they shake their heads in scorn'” (verses 6-8).

I see no reason why David can’t supply enough good quotes for the President’s usual barrage.  These are just from one chapter!

Tweet“Help me, O Lord my God! … Let them see that this is your doing, that you yourself have done it, Lord.  Then let them curse me if they like, but you will bless me!  When they attack me, they will be disgraced!  But I, your servant, will go right on rejoicing! … I will give repeated thanks to the Lord, praising him to everyone” (verses 26-30).

Even his enemies admit that President Trump powerfully uses tweets.  Even his supporters often lament that he doesn’t always write “apples of gold in a setting of silver” (Prov. 25:11).  Paul said true Christians must

“Pray this way for kings and all who are authority

so that we can live peaceful and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity” (1 Tim. 2:2-3).   We pray this so that we can finish the Great Commission God has given His Church.

It would help make America great again if President Trump and all of us would let David and the Bible guide our tweets … and social media!

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When Will the “House of Israel” Receive Ezekiel’s message? They Were Removed in Captivity 130 Years Earlier!

“God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets …” (Heb. 1:1-2).

So we might think, “Ezekiel?  That’s for ‘time past’!   That’s Old Testament!   This major prophet wrote 13 prophecies in chronological order from 593-571 B.C.   What could he say way back then that we’d need to know?”

Actually you’re going to be surprised how much the book of Ezekiel reveals for our day.   Paul in Hebrews certainly wasn’t saying don’t bother paying attention to the prophets because he’s the one who wrote, “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Tim. 3:16).

For the “House of Israel” today

Fifty years ago I was shocked to learn that Ezekiel was commissioned by God to “speak to the house of Israel” (3:1).  The book of Ezekiel mentions “House of Israel” 78 times, “House of Jacob” 1 time, and “House of Judah” only 5 times.

Today we are conditioned to think “Israel” = Jews since Israel today is Judah, Jews and Jewish.  But Judah is only one tribe of the 12 Tribes of Israel.  “House of Israel” in the Bible refers to the 10 Tribes of Israel led by Ephraim and Manassah.

blessing E&MRemember how in Gen. 48:16 Israel [Jacob] blessed Ephraim and Manassah:  “Let my name be named upon them” (emphasis mine).

Although some times in Ezekiel, “Israel” will refer to or include Judah and Jerusalem, many times it clearly refers to the 10 Tribes.

But wait!  Here’s the intrigue

Ezekiel was commissioned to speak to the House of Israel.  But they had been removed from anywhere near him 130 years earlier by the Assyrians (2 Kings 18).  No way did Ezekiel deliver a message to them!

And no way would God be over a century late in having His prophet deliver a warning message to His people!

Key of David eBook adMaybe you guessed it!  Ezekiel is a crucial message to the House of Israel today.

Do you know where Manasseh is today?  Ephraim?  The other tribes?

It’s many of you reading this post!  You need to understand Ezekiel.

Let’s look at it together in future posts!

Fifty years ago I couldn’t wait to read the exciting truth about the United States and British Commonwealth in Prophecy.  This happens to be a huge part of understanding the Key of David.  And the book of Ezekiel.

USBCProphecy

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Are You Getting Anything Out of This Blog?

Some of you write amazing blogs that I like to read.   One common characteristic is an interesting writing pizazz that I hope rubs off on me.   Next to sharing God’s way, I want most not to bore people.  You’d think God’s way couldn’t be boring, but with some people all things are possible!

Caralyn’s “BeautyBeyondBones” has flair down pat.  What a way with words!  She shares hip lingo and culture that this old man has no clue about!  Having a common name spelled uniquely is a tip off that you’re going to get that from her blog!  Her battle and victory over anorexia is certainly not my problem, as I am the fattest I have ever been, but as she puts it so well, “we’re all recovering from something.”  She has good motivational principles to apply, but I also get the bonus of getting her take on life as a millennial in hopes of dealing with my four.  It’s no wonder she has 45,000 subscribers and is dinging the counter!

BJ’s “RiverWalk” enlightens me on the Bible which is, of course, what old Broose the Moose aims to do for others.  He regularly takes the day’s Bible passage from reading the Bible in a  year and brings it to life with some interesting background information or exciting personal experience.  And I’ve got to admire a man sacrificing his life in service over in Turkey.  It’s no wonder he has 26,000 subscribers.

When I ask myself, “Are you getting anything out of these two blogs?”, my answer is a resounding “yes!” and I eagerly wait for their next post.

Leading Us to Our Glorious Destiny adAfter writing for five years and offering 350 posts and 9 eBooks

sometimes I wonder if I’m doing any good and if anybody is getting anything out of this blog?  WordPress stats don’t give that.

I would so appreciate a comment from you

Especially if there is some subject you’d like me to write about.   It seems like I’ve written about everything there is and am now repeating myself like an old befuddled man!

I sincerely hope that you “little flock” (Luke 12:32) following this blog are being called NOW by God and being led to His incredible destiny for you.

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Dear Bible

In 1943 Ruth Crowley of the Chicago Sun-Times started an advice column called Dear Ann Landers.  In 1955 Esther Pauline “Eppie” Lederer replaced her and continued 47 years, building a readership of 90 million until she died in 2002.

In 1956 Pauline Phillips started her advice column called Dear Abby, which is carried on today by her daughter Jeanne Phillips.

Who hasn’t heard of Dear Ann Landers and Dear Abby?  Maybe you’ve written off to them!  I often read them but never felt like I had anything worthy of climbing the mountain to reach the great Guru.

These newspaper columns are hugely popular because they feature apparently real people asking for advice about real life experiences that can be so intricate, complicated and even bizarre.   I never felt my life measured up to all the intrigue.  You probably get a sense of that when you read this blog!

In the Pueblo Chieftain newspaper there has been a column called Ask Pastor ________ [I’m leaving her name off].  Yes, her!  Anyone who knows anything about the Bible should immediately suspect all of her advice (1 Tim. 2:12-3:15).

Years ago I thought about starting up Dear Bible, on the idea that people should want the advice of God rather than just human ideas.  So the idea would be for

Dear Bible to dispense advice via only actual Bible verses

Bible cloudySo it would be advice straight from God, not twisted by humans (2 Pet. 3:16).

To get started, I tried to make up realistic-sounding problems that I could then give the Bible’s scripture advice.

Dear Bible, my mother-in-law drives me crazy … Dear Crazy, (quote the book of Ruth).

Dear Bible, my husband … my wife is mistreating me… Dear Mistreated, (quote Eph. 5).  As you might surmise …

Dear Bible, it just didn’t work

Zechariah eBook AdThe Bible doesn’t say “Jane should tell her brother to stop trying to get his stepchildren to …”

People would get tired of reading “Humble yourself.”  Or “do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”  Or “Love others as yourself.”  Or “Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself.”

Dear Reader

For each temptation of the devil, Jesus Christ quoted him an “It is written …”

We should study the Bible daily and apply its foundational principles that work under all life’s situations (2 Tim. 3:15-17).

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Somebody Forgot to Tell the Bible That the Law Is Done Away

Many people say “The law is done away”

They forgot to tell the Bible.   They think there ought to be a law against the Bible teaching law, commandment-keeping and works.   So they remove the unnecessary words, in their mind.

♦   Take out Gen. 2:3 about God sanctifying [setting apart] the seventh day.    The Sabbath got changed to Sunday when Jesus was resurrected.  Paul said you can esteem one day above another or every day alike, your choice.

Actually, Jesus was resurrected on Saturday late afternoon, just before sunset, exactly three days and three nights in the grave like He said would be the only sign of His messiahship (Matt. 12:40).  And Paul was talking about days a person chooses to fast, not days of worship (Rom. 14:2).   We should study into these two issues for ourselves!

♦  Temptation AdRemove Gen. 2:17 forbidding eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.   Satan was right that they wouldn’t die because they’re immortal souls, predestined to go to heaven or hell upon death.

Actually, Adam and Eve were expelled from the Garden and from having access to the Holy Spirit, which was symbolized by the Tree of Life.  Their progeny has eaten from the forbidden tree ever since and earned the death penalty for sin against the law (Rom. 6:23.)  God is calling only a few to be His firstfruits at the return of Christ.  How are we responding? (Matt. 13).

♦  Sacrifice of IsaacNo need for Gen. 26:5 about “Abraham obeyed My voice and kept My charge, My commandments, My statutes, and My laws.”  All Abraham had to do was believe.

Actually, Abraham became the Father of the Faithful because He showed His faith by his prompt works of obedience to what God said (James 2:21-26).   Faith without works is dead—not Isaac in this famous Bible story!

♦  10CFor sure take out the Ten Commandments (Exo. 20 and Deut. 5), especially that fourth one!  Love is the fulfilling of the law and the end of the law.   Christ in us frees us from the burden!   Somebody needs to stop Moses from going back up the mount for new tablets and let them stay smashed to bits!

Actually, “This is the love of God, that we keep His commandments.  And His commandments are not burdensome” (1 John 5:3).

Whoa!   So far we’ve looked at just the first five books of the 66 books of the Bible!   We don’t have time to excise the rest of the Old Testament one book at a time.

But that’s okay because those who believe the law is done away also believe the whole Old Testament is done away.  Replaced by the better New Covenant established by Jesus Christ shedding His blood on the cross.  So save us all the trouble and just get rid of the first two-thirds of the Bible.   Next …

Jesus’ words have got to go

Start with the Sermon on the Mount where Jesus said not only can we not murder or commit adultery, but we can’t even hate or lust.  How dare Him make the law even more binding, according to the spirit of the law!  Who does He think He is!  God?

Then He says “Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets.  I did not come to destroy but to fulfill” (Matt. 5:17.   Hey, that’s what we think!

Then He says “depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!” (Matt. 7:23).  Hey, we don’t need more practice, we’re good at it!

Poor Jesus!  He says “He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me” (John 14:21).  We’re the ones who love You.   We’re the ones who understand that love is the fulfilling of the law and does away with the need for law and commandments and works.

So forget piecemeal hacking!  We’ll just remove the Gospels since Jesus did away with the law by His death on the cross.  How should we know why He would do away with everything He had taught!  Wised up, I guess.

At last we get to Paul who preached the end of the law

And he overturned and contradicted everything the Bible had taught up until then.  People say he taught we are under grace not law, with no works required.

Grace bookletOK, take out the part where the Jerusalem elders told Paul that “you yourself also walk orderly and keep the law” (Acts 21:24).  Remove where Paul said “by the law is the knowledge of sin” (Rom. 3:20).  Where Paul said “do we then make void the law through faith?  Certainly not!  On the contrary, we establish the law” (Rom. 3:31).

And how can we put up with Paul stating “Therefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy and just and good … For we know that the law is spiritual” (Rom. 7:12-14).  Spiritual?  C’mon, Paul!  How can you say it will never have an end when we know the Bible does away with the law!

Or where he proclaims “Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be” (Rom. 8:7).  How dare Paul call us carnal when we’re so righteous for eschewing legalism!

Over and over this Apostle to the Gentiles keeps keeping the law and teaching others to do so.  Imitating Christ just like He said (Matt. 5:19).   We’d be content to just keep on twisting the parts where he writes thoughts “hard to understand” (2 Pet. 3:16) because people would understand that.  But he has to go and keep making some plain statements that even we can’t twist to our own destruction!

We’d better just get rid of his 14 books in the Bible.

There!  Since we believe the law is done away,

Somebody should have told the Bible!

We’ve just removed all law and commandment-keeping and works from the Bible.    We can make the Bible say whatever we want it to say!  Even though Paul said “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Tim. 3:16-17).

And several times the Bible warns against not only adding words to it, but also taking away words from it.  That warning also comes in the very last chapter of the Bible—in Rev. 22.

No problem.  When we took out all the references to law and commandment-keeping in the Bible, all of those warning pages were removed also!

We just have the two covers left.  Bible study is a snap now!   Trouble is, if we don’t repent of thinking God would ever do away with His law, we’ll be the ones done away with.

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