Ontario’s premier is banking for the votes of business and we should not underestimate the proportion of votes that accrue to a party going all out to opt out of Canada’s constitution, health system, and land and environmental sustainability vision. Every single initiative of the Conservative government had the smell of a drug deal, with a caring soundbyte out front and repeated often. Thanks to an alert and brave Canadian Mr. Ford’s brazen raiding of the federal purse is out in the open. His plot to unravel the fabric of Canada’s unique national consensus began with his conferences with the Atlantic premiers, ostensibly coordinating demands for health funding.
Thank you, Brave Canadian, Ms Cooper. For a necessary medical procedure, she ended up paying fees of nearly $1200. Believe it folks! There is a network of medical practitioners and their staff lining up to pick the pockets of Ontarians, all in the name of providing alternate locations for medical procedures to reduce wait times. Thanks to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, we have seen the tip of the iceberg. The urgency for sending land developers into the Greater Toronto Area’s Greenbelt is that there is a shortage of homes. The Federal government’s commitment to the right of workers to strike is just too much for a party pledged to stand with business entities. The Premier’s insincerity comes forth, like a leaky faucet, drip, drip, drip.
When the funding of the Freedom Convoy came to light the deer frozen in the beans were churches and parachurch organizations, many of whom were proponents of religious liberty. There never was an official barrier to the expression of religious faith in Canada except the campaign to snuff out First Nations culture. A nastier alliance is hard to find. Christians who have nothing to hide have no fear of government. Those who want to turn Canada into an imitation of any of the religious states of ancient or modern history are intoxicated with the wine of male chauvinism and intolerance. They do not see how every state claiming to have a religious foundation has descended into fascism, thinly disguised civil dysfunction and civil war. They do not see Rome, London and Washington as little bits of tinder-dry kindling. They learn nothing from Pakistan and the Islamic Republics. They are creating a narrative bolstered by legal jargon about the denial of fundamental rights. The Freedom Convoy, they say, was a peaceful protest, as if Canadians are all drunk with visions of a state dominated by right wing Catholics and colonialist Protestants and everything between.
The Freedom Convoy had everything to do with terrorism. Conservatives who want to copy the wild American West are the only ones begging for violence to be a mainstream means of conversing with the government. It is a complete red herring. It is poorly disguised Islamophobia. It is a lack of sensitivity to the plight of Canada’s First Nations to be pushing legal buttons in pursuit of a doomed to fail front seat in government.
Real Christians are nauseated by religious government. Since churches cannot come up with a regime to enforce their internal administration of justice, they will never find one for the country. The fundamental rights of Canadians are secure. The Church needs no alliance, not with Caesar or any of the many wannabe emperors and kings. The priorities of any state and The Christ will eventually be seen in stark contrast no matter how similar they appear. The book is rightly thrown at the Freedom Convoy and its funders.
Christians, unlike a host of loud witnesses to God’s grace to humanity, place great emphasis on pursuing a likeness to God. All humans are like God apart from faith and tradition, but Christians who follow the apostolic standard see the attributes of God as attractive values. We are not interested, despite the widespread slogans about obedience, loyalty and allegiance, in merely following rules and regulations as juveniles are expected to. There is no loyalty path in the Divine personality. To whom would God be loyal and who might we say gives him orders? God’s incomparable designation would disappear if a creature of his receives all of God’s attributes. So let it be settled, once and all, that while we cannot be omnipresent, eternal and omniscient, we content to be merciful, impartial and ruthlessly gracious in judgment and grateful in adversity.
Divine Attributes shared and retained exclusive
The number of people who seem to want to be godly without being like God is increasing. As the prophet said a long time ago, “Sheol is never satisfied”, meaning that the people in the grip of deceit and hypocrisy and on the broad road of condemn are an increasing majority.
“Therefore Sheol has enlarged its throat and opened its mouth without measure; And Jerusalem’s splendor, her multitude, her din of revelry and the jubilant within her, descend into it.” (Isaiah 5:14, NASB)
““Furthermore, wine betrays the haughty man, So that he does not stay at home. He enlarges his appetite like Sheol, And he is like death, never satisfied. He also gathers to himself all nations And collects to himself all peoples.”
(Habakkuk 2:5, NASB)
““Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it.”
(Matthew 7:13, NASB)
“Sheol and Abaddon are never satisfied, Nor are the eyes of man ever satisfied.”
(Proverbs 27:20, NASB)
Foolish obedience slogans
To what advantage does anyone say that they are keeping God’s commandments when the focus of their commitment remains locked in on irrelevant statutes from the Sinai Covenant and festivals (either the weekly sabbath or any of the annual festal holy days). One has to suppose that they are willing to keep the sabbath – have no fun, do no work – and avoid contamination with sick, injured, and sinful people, just as the high level people in the parable of the Good Samaritan did. There is no “next” or “now” in their grasp of divine character what connects with eternity. Living as if all things continue as from the beginning of human history or the beginning of Israelite experience is myopic. Moses has to be be discarded. If no-one reviews and replaces him in our view of biblical reality we remain juvenile and enslaved. Put that in your obedience and righteousness pipe, smoke it and continue choking.
On the escalator down
From the moment the devil saw that decent and honest men were willing to commit themselves to equality and justice he influenced some men to spell out the obvious in such a way that rights could be interpreted as all people are decent and honest because they have rights. Like the spiral into treachery that we observed in the golden calf festival at Mount Sinai while Moses was conversing with Yahweh, the American experiment has been on a downhill tumble, protected and promoted by the racist, fascist, insurrectionist (states’ rights advocates), less government or wild west armed insurgents, and armed quasi-patriots. The image of a falling populace has found reinforcement in the downward escalator ride by the now disgraced 45th president beginning his campaign for president. Down on their knees before a hollow mogul, down into thoughtless mantras, down into illiteracy and apathy. Sadly heading downward too is the bison’s plight of endangerment, a fitting metaphor for the disappearance of people like the founders of the American nation.
Find the truth and still be lost
They do not even have the good sense to actually be informed. They think that once they can latch on to a practice like sabbath-keeping or animosity against sinners they will seem strong and intimate with the true God. The lesson of hypocrisy is not quickly learned. The glory of God , as it relates to human behaviour and attitudes, is illustrated in the story of Jonah, a man who displayed an incredibly ignorance of who God was. The glory of God, as it relates to God’s decisive acts, also comes from the Jonah story. The Lord Christ offered his contemporaries one sign, though they wanted many. He said that his resurrection from the dead after three days would suffice. If we think that our generation is not adulterous, crooked and perverse we are using less than one one to observe our times. We cannot be like God without imitating his primary witness. If we ever become exactly what God is he will cease to be God. Beware the satanic delusion
Paul’s “who will bring a charge?” is defined by several instances of accusations in the legal sense. It is a severe and conclusive challenge, like the one we hear at weddings, “If anyone knows why these two should not be joined in holy matrimony, let him now speak or forever hold his peace”. The madness of charging God’s people with liability in the Divine Court will appear as we look further into the meaning of bringing a charge against the elect.
The madness of justice
The disciples appear in their life experience in the court of Roman justice all over Asia. Luke’s witness included repeated hounding by Jewish people of the disciples all along their missionary journeys OUTSIDE OF PALESTINE/JUDEA.
That they appeared in the Jewish court is no surprise (Acts 4, 5 6, 22 and 23). That the High Priest has a court official punch Paul in the mouth rips the figleaf off the proceedings. Anyone who had so much as spoke kindly about Yeshua of Nazareth when he was here in the flesh used to be shunned and excluded from synagogue attendance. There is even a word for Jewish person barred from attending synagogue: aposunagogos.
The relevance of charges
The heritage of the sons of Israel is called “law” with good reason. While the written work of Moses is properly instruction, the name Torah means just that, teaching and instruction, it comes with prescriptions for addressing cases brought to the attention of the Levites and priests. Prescription and proscription are the tools of a prosecutor. In other words, where the law says “You shall” and “You shall not” there we will find the necessary defence and prosecution.
The terms related to “bring a charge” that we find in Acts are
A judicious Messiah
In the Gospels we find Jewish people seeking rulings from Yeshua on common problems and even some hypothetical ones. While he always had an answer that brings a divine perspective on human affairs the Lord Christ refused to assign punishments to offenders. He is on the record saying that he came to save people not condemn them.
Knowing that the scrolls of Moses (the book of the law) was an indictment against the sons of Israel, and were placed in close proximity to the ark of the covenant with the tables of stone as a part of the prosecution of the sons of Israel.
It is not extreme therefore for the Lord Christ to have identified Moses (John 5:45) as the one who accuses (katēgoreô, κατηγορεω), or for Paul to identify the law as the article for condemnation (katakrinô, κατακρινω) and to write “Now we know that whatever the Law says, it speaks to those who are under the Law, so that every mouth may be closed and all the world may become accountable to God;” (2 Corinthians 3:7, 9, 11 and Romans 3:19, NASB)
Law, crime, faith, and death
Two important observations are necessary here. First, that is not because people violate the law that they become guilty before God in the first place, and secondly, the law enters only to magnify or to enlarge the fact of human violation of God’s will, which we will have to admit from antiquity is not the law but the violation of trust. Let no one dance around the fact that a person is allowed to lie and steal in broad daylight in America if one is not talking to the FBI and is a corporate entity pushing product. Law helps crime and faith is the certain antidote to death.
That is to say, humans are liable to God for not trusting him. We owe him and live in condemnation for not believing.
He who believes (present tense) in Him is not judged (present tense); he who does not believe has been judged (perfect tense) already, because he has not believed (perfect tense) in the name of the only begotten Son of God. (John 3:18, NASB)
The significance of the present tense in this verse is that the action continues, and the significance of the perfect tense in this verse is that the action has an ongoing condition related to it.
So we can conclude that Paul’s question “Who will bring a charge?” is a necessary Messianic perspective. How dare anyone accuse the people who Christ has released from judgment and condemnation with law and prophet or visionary? How dare they indeed? It is time to halt the assault with obedience to law on people who have come to God through Christ.
James Robison was probably once a preacher of the Gospel. He most likely was a pastor and ordained minister. Today he is the poster boy for the marketing of useless trivia alongside the charitable work he is evidently more comfortable doing. No one is ever saved by supporting the poor directly or by finding agencies that do. Today he is hawking a book which, he claims will secure global freedom.
Blasphemy, filthy lucre and greed
What happened to the Bible? Is it so hijacked by the people who like to wave it around and make solemn statements with their hands on it without caring about what is on its pages? The definitive guide to Israel was written in Greek 2000 years ago, but most people are too local language biased to take the time to read the Bible in its splendour. I used to watch with curiosity and excitement as James and his wife pour their hearts out to needy people across the ocean. I usually got turned off by his guests purporting to teach some kingdom principle or other fantastic elementary process that believers need. The world will need Israel and Judaism when Israel is a welcoming place for Egyptians, Iraqis, Palestinians, Lebanese, and Black people. You can only slander the God of Abraham and Yeshua by pushing a narrative that has Israel – of any age – as the solution to global captivity and oppression. It is not possible.
The truth slips right of our fingers
Which part of “Time’s up” do people not get? A desolate house stands on Temple Mount not because of antisemitism or because Islam is a proper revision of Mosaic Judaism, but because it was so decreed Israel’s king, the one that arrived on a donkey. Seventy years of captivity pales into insignificance alongside the 19 centuries-long shut down of levitical operations. Time is not stretchable. God’s looking the other way has an end. Justice is not a revolving door of rituals; at some point everyone’s account becomes due. Freedom is a thing the sons of Israel are required to remember. I cannot imagine anyone cherishing freedom apart from a bondage experience. Yet the contemporaries of our Lord Yeshua debated with him that the sons of Israel were never in bondage to anyone.
They answered Him, “We are Abraham’s descendants and have never yet been enslaved to anyone; how is it that You say, ‘You will become free’?”
Men and women who are committed to justice without cultural trash are hard to find. If the threat of eviction is still reverberating in Judea and Samaria then it is ostensibly because the crimes in the temple continue in the political arena, because today, in the 21st century, scribes and Pharisees can no longer with ease or the threat of violence silence the truth or dampen the thirst for biblical knowledge. The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is the God of all nations, and his worshippers from all over the world are not umbilically connected to Jerusalem or Gerizim, to Moses, the patriarchal traditions, or the wisdom of Solomon. There is one greater than David and Solomon. So let’s send the books and videos packing, because they do not prioritize the weightier matters of the Law, nor recognize that the blood of bills and goats is useless and irrelevant. Let the children sing and dance their “Hosanna to the son of David” who alone sets people genuinely free.
Even the modern versions, claiming to be more accurate than ever, fail to recognize the identical structure in Genesis 30:29 and 31:6. Those who think they have found a bully pulpit with their gender bias, copying the levitical system’s exclusion of women have no idea what a deep pit they are trapped in. The Septuagint (from the 2nd century BC) gets the emphasis of the personal pronoun in both verses. Sometimes translators are plain lazy, and sometimes they are blind. What other exegetical follies may be hiding in the transportations that have dominated the biblical landscape? Just imagine.
“For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus in the night in which He was betrayed took bread;” (1 Corinthians 11:23, NASB)
A fact we do not hide
We bristle at betrayal and think ourselves to be beyond taking or being taken but John the Baptist and all the disciples were handed over to hostile powers and were victims of broken trust. God’s sovereign wisdom locks betrayal into the central memorial of Messianic priorities. Feeling to remember Christ’s death and future coming can be a fatal flaw. In the betrayal of Christ and in his institution of the memorial supper we come face to face with two powerful meanings of the word deliver (paradidômi)
All out in the open
We can go down that road and ruin our witness by failing to recognize that our mingling at the Lord’s Table recalls both transmission and betrayal. We can pretend that the world did not need Judas, but Scripture stands unbroken.
“For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered (PARADIDÔMI) to you, that the Lord Jesus in the night in which He was betrayed (PARADIDÔMI) took bread;” (1 Corinthians 11:23, NASB)
Our narratives may tag the passion of Christ as an evil episode, but he voluntarily suffered and died. “What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us? He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?” (Romans 8:31-32, NASB)
It may not be recognized as a common wonder but having literate parents is a huge advantage when you are curious, preschool and juvenile. My mother taught me all the things that, I think, many still get primarily in school. Reading, writing and arithmetic came to me from my mother.