Month 8:12, Week 2:3 (Shleshi/Bikkurim), Year:Day 5936:217 AM|
Gregorian Calendar: Thursday 25 October 2012
A Messianic Pretender Goes Public
Continued from Part 1
Today's davar (word) is a supplement to my last Rosh Chodesh (New Moon) davar (word) about a serious matter in the messianic movement that requires urgent attention.
The Great Levelling
We are currently going through one of the greatest levelling processes in a very long time as Yahweh exposes not only the corrupt banking and political system, and industrial-military complex in the secular world but religious leaders and their organisations too. No one is excepted, myself and my own spiritual works included. We all have our fleshy natures to work through, leaders as well as followers. Only leaders have an added responsibility and accountability because of the influence they have on others, and are the first to be taken to task in any shake-down by El Elyon (the Most High).
The Many 'Two Witnesses'
There was a time when I, like most of us in positions of leadership, once had a moment in which I had a delusion of grandeur - I thought, because someone who claimed to be a 'prophet' had suggested to me that maybe I was one of the two end-time witnesses (Rev.11:3). I don't know how many people have either speculated or were 100% comvinced that they were one of these witnesses who are to appear dramatically in the end-time, are martyred for their testimony, and who are raised from the dead.
The Hawkins Brothers
One cult's claim to fame and authority is based on its making this its central doctrine, bringing messianics into disrepute as a result - Yaaqob & Yisrayl Hawkins of the group, The House of Yahweh based in Abilene, Texas. The fact that one of these two men is now dead doesn't seem to have phased the survivor or his group. The implication of such a claim is that since the Two Witnesses are of such great importance that this must mean (if their claim is to be believed) that they have mighty authority and that therefore they should be obeyed even if one of them is dead and cannot now possibly fuflil the New Testament prophecy.
Two Translators' Claim to Fame
The Hawkins' are not the first to make such claims. There are two men in the contemporary messianic movement who have issued translations of the Bible which are actually very good. Both are great scholars. I use their works often in conjunction with other translations and in that respect these two have achieved far more than either of the Hawkins' who from I have seen have produced nothing of any great importance that would remotely hint they were special witnesses of Yahweh.
Going Beyond A Calling
But unfortunately these two men go a lot further that merely producing useful scholarly contributions to the Messianic Movement. Both go a lot further in claiming that their Bible versions are a prophetic sign validating their calling as someone special, and hinting that their group is therefore the end-time 'Restoration' of Israel or of Nazarene Judaism.
Inventing New Personal Names
One of them goes around using a very pompous title consisting of an acronym made by combining the first letters of a string of claimed offices. In common with most messianics, he has chosen several Hebrew names for himself, all of them of great men from Tanakh (Old Testament) times, hinting again at greatness or at least the ambition to be like them. I myself have nothing against taking Hebrew names and have done it myself (Lev-Tsiyon) but unlike many of these messianic leaders I have not renounced my 'gentile' birth-names (because I feel that would be to dishonour my parents) and so I use both. Many 'drop' their 'gentile' names and even change their name by Deed Poll because these birth-names were pagan, an understandable choice, though it does have to be pointed out that this was not the practice in New Testament times - there you will find that converts to the faith retained their old pagan names without any shame even when they had been originally named after pagan deities .
Adulterers and Swindlers
Our friend with the pompous title has also brought forth one or two very bizzare doctrines indeed and earned quite a reputation for his highly carnal view of marriage. The other dumped a wife he didn't want any more before remarrying. He also swindled many people of his Bibles which they had ordered by claiming their downpaymets were donations for his ministry. I know, our ministry was one of them. So it comes as no surprise to me to constantly see him harrassing his followers for money because he can't make ends meet - not just occasionally but continually. Either he can't see, or refuses to see, that Yahweh will not let him get away with this until he has confessed and made restitution. And if he or anyone else in that position doesn't believe it can be done, then I highly recommend the movie (based on a true story) called, Flywheel.
But it is not these men, or the Hawkins', that I am writing about today. I am concerned with another who is likewise claiming to be 'Yahweh's Big Boss' and Head of the Messianic Remnant, who recently announced his grand title, 'Yahweh's Commander-in-Chief' and caused a storm of protest. Though he has not produced his own Bible translation, his gifting is in writing and he is undeniably a brilliant teacher from whom I have learned a great deal, and still learn from, even though he long ago attacked and ostracised me and my ministry over some teachings he did not agree with.
The new 'Commander-in-Chief' of Yahweh's armies has gone much further than any of the others, though, for not only does he claim descent from illustrious King David but has abandoned three wives and their four children, and gone to great efforts to hide his birth-name, replacing it with his adopted Hebrew one, so as not to be 'found out'. He very angrily wrote to me not that long ago ordering me not to use his birth-name alongside his Hebrew one no doubt for fear of his latest followers discovering the truth about his past and so potentially damaging his ministry.
The Temptation of Leaders to Claim Presumptuous Lordships
It is not unusual for gifted men to be elevated by their followers into being more than what Yahweh has called them to be, or doing all the elevating themselves. In my early days some of our own members were keen on sticking the 'prophet' label onto me. And whilst I have indeed made prophecies, all but one having come true, I have never claimed to be a Prophet in the sense of the acknowledged greats of the Bible like Moses, Elijah or Isaiah. I believe every believer who has been regenerated by Messiah is a ground-level prophet (Rev.19:10), the head of household is supposed be prophetic for his family, and ministers are supposed to be prophetic for their congregations. However, all of these are to be distinguished from those more-or-less operating exclusively in the prophetic office in local congregations (not necessarily pastors or elders, and of both sexes) as well as those who are evangelists and apostles who per definition - when exercising these offices - must have an anointing more akin to those of the biblical ancients. The problems begin when men start using a gifting (assuming they have even been endowed with the ones they claim) to expect to be given special authority and rights as rulers over the people because this so quickly degenerates into priestcraft.
The Apostles and Evangelists
The big question we must ask ourselves is this: does Yahweh actually have a human 'Commander-in-Chief' down here? There is no doubt that the B'rit Chadashah Scriptures (New Testament) speak of Twelve Apostles, authorised heads of the Messianic Community (Church), of whom three were Presiding Apostles (originally Peter, James and John) of whom one was the Presiding Apostle whom one might justifiably call the 'commander-in-chief'. All three held this office at different times, beginning with Peter and ending with John who of the twelve was not martyred . One thing is clear about this 'commander-in-chief' and the other apostles and evangelists - they all had incredible spiritual gifts and operated in the miraculous and they worked as a team.
A Fundamental Absence of Some Gifts in the Messianic Movement
I have yet to find any messianic claimants operating remotely in these gifts - which is not to say that at some time in the future they might not, but it is to unequivocably say that right now they are not. And that goes for me too. Comparing this absense of supernaturally-endowed gifts (in healing, for example) with New Testament times, we are forced to categorise all of us with those followers before the anointing at Shavu'ot (Pentecost). Those experiencing persecution in Third World countries where they are being martyred for their faith have more of these gifts as antinomians (lawless believers) than we do! We may know a lot more theology than most of these people, and some of us may have revelatory gifts, but that does not necessarily make us mighty 'commanders'.
Discrediting the Exposé Scriptures
Little wonder that these 'commanders' like to downplay or discredit Mark 16:17-18 as a 'later addition' because few of these signs follow any of us! And for this reason these leaders prefer to be likened to Old Testament judges like Samson or Gideon, though really these men's giftings are beyond their grasp too since none of them are parting seas, making water come out of rocks, slaying Philistines with jawbones, or experiencing fleece-wetting miracles and the like. So who are any of these pretenders trying to kid? Our trouble is that we have created believers, congregations and ministries in the image of our own culture of sceptical intellectualism (messianics) or lack of self-discipline (lawless evangelicals).
An Honest Appraisal
The only conclusion that we can come to that is honest is that Yahweh has many leaders today, all of whom are at different places, none of whom are like either the ancient apostles, prophets or judges - but we are heading in that direction. Why have we got no further? Because we haven't yet been fully purged of our Jacob-natures. And because we have not been fully purged of these, we are not yet properly Israelites, no matter what 'genealogy' we may claim, because the B'rit Chadashah (New Covenant) isn't about lineage but about SUBMISSION AND OVERCOMING. We are all still far too carnal however 'spiritually advanced' we may have convinced ourselves to be because of our vain intellectualism and clever mastery of words, a tendency many messianics have alas inherited from Judaism with its many words devoid of spiritual substance.
Many Ministers and Ministries Will Fall
So long as these leaders are still swindling their followers economically and not making things right, so long as they keep on commiting adultery or forcing their wives to commit adultery by throwing them away, so long as in their pride and arrogance they claim leadership prerogatives based on unsubstantiated claims, their ministries will either stagnate or be brought to naught.
I have predicted that many of these men will fall if they do not repent. We will all fail if we don't. Every one of us. We need never assume that our repentance is complete just because we have overcome one or two things or because we are clever in this or that, nor should we ever assume that we are irreplacable, however productive we might be. Yahweh demands nothing short of complete revolution against the flesh until we are fully submitted - mind, lev (heart) and body. A right lev (heart) always comes before right theology. And what a leveller that emet (truth) is and what a blow to pride!
No Fall Need Be Permanent
It is not a crime to make mistakes because we all do but it is a crime against Yahweh not to put them right. Sometimes we are slow to repent because we are blind, and pride has a way of blinding. No leader is infallible and no leader is unable to make things right, even if certain types of sin may disqualify him from ministry - for a while or (in the same of some of the more serious ones) permanently - because of the broken trust such sinning causes. It is not my wish that any of the men I have spoken about should be removed for all have amazing talent and capacity to serve the Body of Messiah. They are all needed. But there is nothing quite like pride or ambition to be someone 'big' to bring a soul to ruin. I hazzard to guess that all men face this temptation at one time or another. If they didn't, Satan wouldn't have bothered offering Yah'shua (Jesus) power and fame during His test in the Judean Wilderness.
Scouring the Earth for Converts
With the exception of the Hawkins', all three of these men have tried to recruit me at one time or another. Like the Jews of old, they sometimes scour the continents to make converts to make men like themselves.
Nowhere Near Ready
To be truthful, I don't think we are anywhere near being ready to gather into communities, let alone gather in regular congregations (even though we must not stop assembling in the latter). I have seen so many fail, including our own. We are still working things out as individuals and as families. Until we have families properly functioning, nothing much else will work either.
A Time for Family-Building
This is, beyond any question in my own mind, the time for family-building. Every one of these men have messed up in this department, myself included, and sometimes disasterously. Many have unadvisedly raced head without a clear mandate from Yahweh even if false prophetic voices - including their own flesh - have told them to do so. I have done it myself which is why I have pulled back to prioretise what needs to be done first - fixing up self and the family. If we don't have these right, we're going to go nowhere fast.
Only One Cohen Gadol, Only One Vine
"I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and makes war. His eyes are like blazing fire, and on His head are many crowns. He has a name written on him that no one knows but He Himself. He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and His Name is the Davar Elohim (Word of God). The armies of heaven were following Him, riding on white horses and dressed in fine linen, white and clean. Out of His mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations. 'He will rule them with an iron scepter.' He treads the winepress of the fury of the wrath of Elohim (God) Almighty. On His robe and on His thigh He has this name written: KING OF KINGS AND MASTER OF MASTERS" (Rev.19:11-16, NIV).
There was a time when I tried to 'rule' over a vast swathe of congregations we had all over the world - about 60 altogether at our height. It didn't take me long to realise that this was totally impossible and that unless the pastors themselves were reliable, nothing I did would make a lot of difference and I would get entangled in a whole web of congregational strife. In the end Yahweh told me to let the assemblies be completely independent. Had I not done so I would never have had the time for home or for the work He has actually called me into at this time - to lead everyone into their own anointings so they can be their own commanders-in-chief as husbands and pastors. None of us has the right to claim the rôle of Cohen Gadol (High Priest) any more because that is exclusively reserved for Yah'shua (Jesus), even if Popes, Mormon presidents, mega-evangelists and others do this very thing. Any system that denies this is out of divine tavnith (pattern) because the one claiming such an exalted position is in effect claiming to be the Vine to whom all toqef (authority) has been given to the Branches - or the one big branch to whom all else must be grafted...even if he claims there is another 'Vine' above him.
The Future Princes
I do believe that one day there will be a 'Presiding Prince' but not before the tribes are restored and gathered under Joseph and have their own princes and clans with clan rulers in the Holy Land rid of the scourge of Zionism and of Islam. We are clearly a long way away from that.
The man who now aspires or claims to be this 'commander-and-chief' has two important things to do before anything else. First, he has got to make things right with the wives and children he cast away. Second, he must come clean with his followers about his past. Before that happens, he will make no progress
in his spiritual man, however inspired he may be in other areas of his life. If he doesn't, his ministry will - I guarantee - fall, because the emet (truth) will come out eventually. Yahweh won't allow it not to.
 See The True Names of Elohim: Exposing the Ultra-Messianics
 Mormons and various LDS factions have 15 apostles, 12 + a 'First Presidency' of three