Monthly Archives: July 2011

Progression Regression: The World is Going to Hell (Part 2)

         The world cannot be captured and ruled without religion. The elites at the top of the pyramid have always known this. In ancient Sumer, the early architectural form of pyramid was known by the later Akkadian term as ziqqurratu. The original ziggurats indigenous to the lower Mesopotamian region were multi-tiered rising step structures consisting of successive increasingly smaller stages. The overall pyramidal form reached its zenith with a small temple enclosure at the very top. It was in this temple where the priests communed with the gods and received instructions for the people. No one was allowed at the top except the very highest of the priesthood.

         Such a structure was perfect for controlling a society. Each major city had its own temple complex. There was great pomp and religious pageantry associated with these ancient temples. The priesthood was either faking everyone out, knowing they were mere men engaging in a deceptive religious stage play, or was actually being dictated to by demonic forces. In reality, it was a combination of the two in that demons merged with humans. In their human nature, the pagan priests knew they were deceiving the public by presenting something inwardly contrary to the outward display.

         They had a secret, hidden agenda.

         Those lower in the religious hierarchy generally believed in the myth and were transfixed and ruled by it. They dedicated their lives to religious service thinking it was the highest of callings. As they climbed in stature and esoteric knowledge, however, some began to perceive that what they had been taught did not match up with reality. Their indoctrination was merely a façade. They had been deceived as had everyone else but suddenly found themselves as part of a small but powerful elite group. They had completed the majority of the required initiatory degrees and discovered their religion was actually about something else entirely. And as it is in all such secretive clandestine groups, one knows too much to leave. Oaths had been taken along the way. They had gained much power and prestige. They were connected—part of a small cabal of high-end movers and shakers.

         The hidden agenda was about control over the masses for the benefit of the elite.

         Most people never make the connection or get the big idea, and are deceived by the pomp and ceremony. They are fooled by titles and degrees. They honor such people because they perceive them as far above themselves and very close to God.

         Their heads are in the heavens. They do their work on elevated stages. They wear special clothing that sets them apart. They have soaring resumes and rule over churches and ministry organizations. They possess a holier-than-thou arrogant and high-minded attitude. The higher they climb, the more their supporters increase and hang on every word spoken. They rarely climb down off their high horse and mix with the common people. They wear fake smiles and attitudes, talk a lot but say little, and refrain from teaching anything that may compromise their comfortable lifestyles. As classic Pharisees, they talk very good but do next to nothing. Once they build their ziggurat, nothing ever changes. They bask in the glory and support of the people, and become completely enamored of their own self. If they discover they have been compromised by demonic forces, it is too late to change. They cannot go back. They cannot stand the thought of losing their power and prestige.  

         Woe to her who is rebellious and defiled, the tyrannical city! She heeded no voice, she accepted no instruction. She did not trust in the LORD, she did not draw near to her God. Her princes within her are roaring lions, her judges are wolves at evening; they leave nothing for the morning. Her prophets are reckless, treacherous men; her priests have profaned the sanctuary. They have done violence to the law. The LORD is righteous within her; He will do no injustice. Every morning He brings His justice to light; He does not fail. But the unjust knows no shame. [Zephaniah 3:1-5]

         There are two principle spiritual movements going on in America at the moment. One regards the early beginnings of a national Great Awakening consisting of faceless nobody real believers with sincere hearts and absolute dedication to the Lord Jesus at all costs. The other is a fake movement made up of largely deceived masses unaware that they are being manipulated by elitists for alternative purposes.

         In ancient Sumer, the elites used any and all methods of control that existed. Such methods were mere tools in the hands of artisans. Through military conquest, political intrigue, and monetary power they gained absolute control. But religion was their greatest tool. It was mixed in with all the others and the people were none the wiser.

         Beware the mixing of Christianity with political economic interests.

         The Lord Jesus and His men were not Zealots, Scribes, Sadducees, or Pharisees. They did not attempt to rule politically or through military might. They were not in bed economically with the Romans. And they certainly did not try to rule through the medium of religion. Instead of a ziggurat, the Lord had no place to lay His head, preached in the streets, from boats, in the wild, and at the base of a great hillside, though it is now mistakenly referred to as the Sermon on the Mount. Later, His men were hounded everywhere they went. The only honor they received was from God. The world hated them. And as that world continued to preach progression toward the top of a mythical pyramid, it actually consistently regressed toward eventual destruction and hell.

         Now the whole earth used the same language and the same words. It came about as they journeyed east, that they found a plain in the land of Shinar and settled there. They said to one another, “Come, let us make bricks and burn them thoroughly.” And they used brick for stone, and they used tar for mortar. They said, “Come, let us build for ourselves a city, and a tower whose top will reach into heaven, and let us make for ourselves a name, otherwise we will be scattered abroad over the face of the whole earth.” The LORD came down to see the city and the tower which the sons of men had built. The LORD said, “Behold, they are one people, and they all have the same language. And this is what they began to do, and now nothing which they purpose to do will be impossible for them.” [Genesis 11:1-6] [1]

         American Christians are at a fork in the road. We are either living stones being built up as a spiritual house and all-inclusive holy priesthood under the sole authority of the Lord Jesus,[2] or we are burned man-made bricks comprising a fake Christian ziggurat held together by the tar of hypocrisy and religious control. There is no other alternative.

         © 2011 by RJ Dawson. All Rights Reserved.


[1] Unless otherwise noted all Scriptures are taken from the New American Standard Bible, © 1960, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.

[2] 1 Peter 2:5

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Progression Regression: The World is Going to Hell (Part 1)

         The leaders of this world have an agenda. It was the same agenda Nimrod had roughly 5,000 years ago. His agenda was tyrannical world rule and slavery of the human race. For Nimrod, whose name means rebellion, his plan was one of progression. Current politics of progressivism state the same. Its proponents envision a world of peace and prosperity for all, and most people buy into it. The more “progress” they gain toward their idyllic one world wonder, however, the more humanity regresses toward the opposite of what God intended. Their progress is actually rebellious regress, and will have a very rude end.  

         Ancient Sumer (the Biblical Shinar) was the world’s first civilization. It invented agriculture on a mass scale. The Sumerians did this by creating a hierarchical system with a giant slave class at the bottom and a very small class of elites at the top. Prior to that time, humanity existed in a rough equality, an egalitarian collection of many small communities and groups. The powerful elites of Sumer stepped across the line and decided their vision of great things must be accomplished at any cost, hence the use of human slavery.

         From this arrangement, the Sumerians invented a mass economic system, which required the invention of writing. The wheel had long since been invented by their precursors, the ancient Ubadians, and they put it to highly efficient use. Sumer became quite proficient in the sciences and several fields of endeavor, but ruling over all in this new “civilization” was the innovative concept of religion, also on a mass scale. Religious terms were codified, a hierarchy of gods was created and presented in organized form, and the people were indoctrinated en masse. To top off their supreme hubris, they built what came to be known as the world famous Tower of Babel, an edifice whose pinnacle was intended to reach into heaven. The Lord did not like their shenanigans so much, however, and it came to a rude end.

         When thinking of present world elites, one usually does not think about religion. Yet, the creation of a single world hybrid religion is taking place at this very moment and gaining considerable steam. At first, one will think this idea to be beyond ridiculous, but it depends on one’s perspective. American Christianity of the present, in general terms, has long-since backslid from its foundation and is a mere shell of its prior self or something entirely different. Part of this is due to mere sensuality and materialism, and the rebellious raising up of selfish and sinful flesh against the call of the Lord Jesus and the command toward true discipleship.

         The carrying of one’s cross and the ongoing crucifixion of one’s flesh is no longer the top priority among most Christians, and the promotion of self has risen far above it. Therefore, the bulk of what we call Christianity is false and something else altogether. Its merging with other religions should not be all that surprising, as this is built into the prototype invented long ago. Real Christianity of the present, on the other hand, like that of the first century, refuses to be congealed into the merging religious melting pot and will always remain loyal to the Lord Jesus. This strong witness will gain ever-greater trouble for real believers over time.

         By faith Moses, when he was born, was hidden for three months by his parents, because they saw he was a beautiful child; and they were not afraid of the king’s edict. By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, choosing rather to endure ill-treatment with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin, considering the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt; for he was looking to the reward. By faith he left Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king; for he endured, as seeing Him who is unseen. [Hebrews 11:23-27]   

         Anyone studying ancient history knows that religion is the best way to capture the minds of people. Military, economic, and political control would fail without religion. Sumer discovered this. All subsequent world empires adopted it—Egypt, Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, and Rome. Religious control was arguably brought to its height during the Roman Empire, yet even mighty, indestructible Rome had a very rude end. After the fall of Rome, religious control clandestinely moved seamlessly into yet another highly deceptive form. Even after the Protestant Reformation and the great strides toward religious freedom, rule by religion remains with us to this day among Christian adherents.

         The major religions presently on the planet were created the same way ancient Sumer created the first. It was done by decree, by force, and by fear. Those people who refused to get in line with the majority opinion and the hierarchical henchmen were simply eliminated. This is what goes on presently right under our noses. Christian syncretism, a blending of real Christianity with pagan religions, is not new. The blending of all pagan religions is not new either, since each previously mentioned world culture engaged in it. But the blending of all religions of the entire planet, including false forms of Christianity into a single unit is indeed new. Imagine the pride of those engaged in this process, not only in that they actually think they can pull it off and make it happen, but also that they have so little concern for the billions over which they rule.

         Real Christians must always be on their guard, not against the obvious, but against the sly and highly deceptive practices among their own. Adam was deceived by his own wife, for example. David was always being attacked from within. The Lord Jesus was betrayed by one of His own hand-picked disciples. Christians will be deceived and betrayed by Christians. The wheat and tares appear identical. The goats look like sheep. The devil even disguises himself as a wooly wolf:

         “Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves.” [Matthew 7:15] [1]

         These wolves are hungry for you. [Part 1 of 2]

         © 2011 by RJ Dawson. All Rights Reserved.


[1] Unless otherwise noted all Scriptures are taken from the New American Standard Bible, © 1960, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.

When You Gonna Wake Up?

         The people you may think are total morons might only appear that way because they have an unknown agenda. Influential elites often act in strange ways. We spend time speculating, “What were they thinking?”—“No one can be that dense.”—“These eastern establishment types have no clue how the real world works.” America keeps going down the drain and these high hats keep applying the same unworkable non-solutions and continue wasting vast stores of the American taxpayer’s hard-earned money.

         At some point, we must cross over the phantasm chasm and gain some serious understanding that these people are not at all stupid, but brilliant manipulators. They lie through their teeth. They are involved in some incredibly intricate sleight-of-hand tactics that fool the majority of citizens as a matter of course.

         And still, America sleeps…

         And there arose also a dispute among them as to which one of them was regarded to be greatest. And He said to them, “The kings of the Gentiles lord it over them; and those who have authority over them are called ‘Benefactors.’ But it is not this way with you, but the one who is the greatest among you must become like the youngest, and the leader like the servant. For who is greater, the one who reclines at the table or the one who serves? Is it not the one who reclines at the table? But I am among you as the one who serves.” [Luke 22:23-27]

         There are many myths in Washington. One is the myth of “government service.” Government Royalty is a much more accurate description. The ruling elite do indeed lord it over us. Most voters continue to believe that our elected officials serve the people of this great country as humble benefactors with honest hearts. Right. And the Pope just became a Protestant. These people generally don’t serve the Lord and they certainly don’t serve you. They primarily serve themselves and money. The Lord Jesus broke the choices down to either God or mammon. Or one could say God or the false idol of riches and avarice. Or one could say the Lord Jesus or the devil. They keep voting themselves ever-increasing benefits. So, though they are called benefactors, they chiefly benefit themselves and the money interests they serve.

         If they served the Lord they would look different. They would look like servants instead of mini-kings in charge of their own fiefdoms. Servants and those who are served look decidedly different. This is also where much of the institutional clergy gets it wrong. Many are usually being served and do very little actual serving. The proof is in the fruit. Their brand of Christianity is failing the country. The country is trillions in debt and politicians continue bickering over the equivalent of chump change.

         They each have another agenda.

         And so do “We the People:”

         The LORD said to Samuel, “Listen to the voice of the people in regard to all that they say to you, for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected Me from being king over them. Like all the deeds which they have done since the day that I brought them up from Egypt even to this day—in that they have forsaken Me and served other gods—so they are doing to you also. Now then, listen to their voice; however, you shall solemnly warn them and tell them of the procedure of the king who will reign over them.” [1 Samuel 8:7-9]

         America was warned. Though very few listened, America was most definitely warned. And we continue to be warned. We are being warned right now. God never allows such terrible events to occur without a clear word of warning. (1) We either hear the warning and reject it, as did the ancient Hebrews, or (2) We don’t hear because our ears have been rendered powerless by our sin and lack of reverence for the Lord, or (3) We hear and obey. In the case of a country of millions with a vote, however, the majority essentially rules, and the majority has essentially either been deceived by repeatedly honoring liars or has rejected the Lord.

         So Samuel spoke all the words of the LORD to the people who had asked of him a king. He said, “This will be the procedure of the king who will reign over you:

  1. “He will take your sons and place them for himself in his chariots and among his horsemen and they will run before his chariots.
  2. “He will appoint for himself commanders of thousands and of fifties, and some to do his plowing and to reap his harvest and to make his weapons of war and equipment for his chariots.
  3. “He will also take your daughters for perfumers and cooks and bakers.
  4. “He will take the best of your fields and your vineyards and your olive groves and give them to his servants.
  5. “He will take a tenth of your seed and of your vineyards and give to his officers and to his servants.
  6. “He will also take your male servants and your female servants and your best young men and your donkeys and use them for his work.
  7. “He will take a tenth of your flocks, and you yourselves will become his servants.

         “Then you will cry out in that day because of your king whom you have chosen for yourselves, but the LORD will not answer you in that day.”

         Nevertheless, the people refused to listen to the voice of Samuel, and they said, “No, but there shall be a king over us, that we also may be like all the nations, that our king may judge us and go out before us and fight our battles.” Now after Samuel had heard all the words of the people, he repeated them in the LORD’S hearing. The LORD said to Samuel, “Listen to their voice and appoint them a king.” So Samuel said to the men of Israel, “Go every man to his city.” [1 Samuel 8:10-22] [1]

         Z-z-z-z-z-z-z-z-z-z…

         America has been taken over by a ruthless “king.” He’s been here a long time, for many decades. His entire system depends on our continued loyalty and servitude to him. Though often rejected, the only real hope is the Lord Jesus—the Man of Scripture—the God of the Universe—the real King. He makes a way where there is no way. Regardless of what goes on all around us, His kingdom is here, He is here, and He has answers and solutions. 

         The Awake are Aware.

         © 2011 by RJ Dawson. All Rights Reserved.


[1] Unless otherwise noted all Scriptures are taken from the New American Standard Bible, © 1960, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.

The Classic Church Building: A Non-Biblical Wineskin (Part 2)

         “No one puts new wine into old wineskins; otherwise the wine will burst the skins, and the wine is lost and the skins as well; but one puts new wine into fresh wineskins.” [Mark 2:22]   

         Throughout all of man’s history, the one constant form of physical structure which has accounted for 99% of all buildings on the planet is the simple family dwelling. Be it a hut, a tent, or something more extravagant, it is home. Houses, therefore, have forever been ubiquitous. Even in modern society houses greatly outnumber all other buildings. The farther one goes back in history, the more the percentage rises. Hence, the private home was then and remains now the best ministry tool of all time, and the early believers proved it.

         All throughout the Book of Acts is the record of private homes being used in ministry. They began by going “house to house.” The house of the upper room was most likely the home of Mary, the mother of John Mark. After his Damascus road experience, Paul was taken to the house of Judas where he met Ananias. Peter was staying at Simon the tanner’s house by the sea. Paul stayed at and ministered from Lydia’s house in Philippi. The home of Jason in Thessalonica was obviously used for ministry. Paul also lived at and ministered from the house of Titius Justus in Corinth.

         Greet Prisca and Aquila, my fellow workers in Christ Jesus, who for my life risked their own necks, to whom not only do I give thanks, but also all the churches of the Gentiles; also greet the church that is in their house. [Romans 16:3-5]   

         Greet the brethren who are in Laodicea and also Nympha and the church that is in her house. [Colossians 4:15]

         Paul, a prisoner of Christ Jesus, and Timothy our brother, to Philemon our beloved brother and fellow worker, and to Apphia our sister, and to Archippus our fellow soldier, and to the church in your house: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. [Philemon 1:1-3] [1]

         Church buildings are not New Testament archetypical. They can be good. They can be useful. They are possibly great on a temporary basis. But they are very costly and high maintenance. They sometimes cause more problems than they solve. And the number one reason is because they are slow.

         I played softball with a guy once who had to be one of the slowest guys in the whole world. He was not overweight. He was physically healthy. But I could make it to second base before he ever got to first. Once, a dim coach actually put this gentleman in front of me in the batting order. In that game, he had somehow made it safely to first base. Then I came up. I got a hit that would normally easily get me to second base and maybe third. But when I rounded first base my buddy was only halfway to second. Doh! He barely made it there. I’m standing on first when I might have made it to third. And I was not the fastest guy on the team.

         American Christianity has slowed considerably. Despite all the latest technology it has grown sluggish, materialistic, and weighted down. It is no wonder it is failing so badly. The Community of the Lord Jesus was built to be fleet of foot, in shape, slim and trim, on the move, and filled with energy, but also strong in its own right. American Christianity has grown in size as has the population and as a result has long since given up sprints. The problem is doubly bad in that we don’t have the strength for weight-lifting competitions either. In general spiritual terms, though traditional American Christianity has church buildings everywhere, we’re simply not getting the job done, are routinely outclassed, and often overrun. People “go to church” forever and never get to know most of the people in the congregation.  

         On the other hand, there is a relatively new wineskin in this country on the rise. It has remained true to the gospel but has sloughed off old forms that slow and restrict. It is having a tremendous impact.

          House churches and small groups have exploded in the country over the last two decades. Its proponents are quick and mobile, and do whatever possible to reach the lost and disciple the up and coming. There is no way to stop their progress. They need little or no funding. They reach places traditional Christianity rarely reaches. They touch hearts. The organic nature of a small group allows the Lord to be in charge. One cannot hide in a small group. Everybody is somebody. Through much learning and many spiritual trials, home church practitioners have developed the same ministry forms of the early centuries of Christianity. They are motivated by love. They stand on unity. They live to serve.

         The Lord’s original model is presently being applied in more places in the world than ever before, and is impacting the lives of millions that would otherwise never be reached. Mobility is the key. Instead of one large physical building, there are scads of many smaller buildings. Some have no buildings. By this they much more easily follow the cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night, and cover a lot of ground. And they are having miraculous Lord Jesus-caliber results.

        Also, they understand that each real believer is a house—the real building—a mobile tent wherein lives the Spirit of the Lord. Collectively these comprise the worldwide Community of Called-Out Ones independent of the traditions of men. On those occasions when church buildings supplement the work of God and exist according to His will, it is good. Otherwise, we must follow the Lord’s example, trim down, get quick, and make the necessary transistion to the future. His work demands it. [Part 2 of 2] 

         © 2011 by RJ Dawson. All Rights Reserved.


[1] Unless otherwise noted all Scriptures are taken from the New American Standard Bible, © 1960, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.

The Classic Church Building: A Non-Biblical Wineskin (Part 1)

         The Community of the Lord was built for speed. It began in the upper room of a house. The early Church had no time to even consider the things we in the present deem wholly indispensible. They were out to save the world. The Community was expanding by leaps and bounds. Growth was rapid from the very beginning and never slowed for three centuries. It began on its very first day in Jerusalem with a harvest of three thousand souls.

         Imagine that. Many churches of today work for long decades to accumulate a few hundred loyal members. Many are presently trying to keep what they have and are failing miserably.

         It was twenty years ago when I began receiving from the Lord the notes and revelations that would eventually become my first book. But I knew by the 1970’s, within a very short time of studying the New Testament by Holy Spirit inspiration that modern Christianity did not match up at all with the prototype. And I wondered why.

         I quickly got the big idea. I eventually spent thirty years in institutional churches, including my youth, gaining much experience of all that is good about church buildings and that which is not so good. There is no question that the latter outweighs the former.

         First of all, church buildings are simply not Biblical. The Lord never built a building nor did He ever instruct His men to do so. He was never on board with the rich, connected Sadducees who controlled the Jerusalem Temple. Though He often preached in synagogues when welcome, He spent the majority of His ministry time out in the open, in the woods, along the Sea, and on the beaten paths. He was always moving. Always. The Lord Jesus was mobile. The tabernacle in the wilderness was mobile. It was a tent. It was set up, used, taken down, loaded up, transported to a new site, and set up again.

         The Lord taught His men to be mobile. He taught them to give up all their possessions, in part so that they would have nothing tying them down when it came time to move on. The apostle Paul was also constantly on the move. There were occasions when he stayed local to teach and establish a work and then he was off yet again. The traveling man was so mobile that the Lord blessed him with a perfect location to end his life on earth—on the side of a road outside Rome.

         The Lord had no place to lay His head. He occasionally stayed with others but He mostly slept under the stars. He was on a mission. He had work to do. He could not afford to be slowed down.

         It is as obvious as it can be that the early believers followed His example. They were as mobile as He was, and a perfect representation in spiritual terms of the tabernacle of Moses, which was a type of mobile ministry centered on human beings.

         Conversely, our ministries are most often centered on church buildings. We are often bound by church buildings. We can’t get them out of our heads. We cannot imagine life without them (“How can I go to church if there’s not a church?”). For the most part, Christians feel absolutely naked without the comfort, security, and anchor of a building.

         Yet, the majority of Christians throughout history never had buildings. The majority of real Christians on the planet today do not have buildings. But they have the Lord. They are dedicated. They are productive. And they are fast. They can break camp quickly and move to new locations, so to speak. Some of the travel real Christians do is in the Spirit. It is not always geographic. We live, we learn, we gain revelation and greater knowledge, we mature, and then we have to leave old forms, understandings, and perspectives and create new ones based on such. Core Biblical truths are thus granted greater freedom and opportunity to produce much fruit. Isn’t this our goal?

         Static forms always slow. They restrict. We end up trying to force our ministries within such structures. But are we really having an impact on society? How can we when we force others to come to us instead of us going to them?

         Here’s the real beauty of the Lord Jesus and his manner of ministry: He needs nothing material on a permanent basis. Because He is God, He can create anything He needs whenever He needs it, so why must He accumulate a bunch of stuff to schlep around? All it does it slow Him down and restrict ministry efforts. The bulk of His work is in the spiritual realm. If He wants or needs stuff He acquires it. But when it is has served its purpose He gives it away or sells it, and usually gives the money to the needy. Then He starts again. He will not be bound by anything. He is as free as free can be. He builds nothing that grows sluggish as long as He is in charge. [Part 1 of 2]

         © 2011 by RJ Dawson. All Rights Reserved.      

Woe to You, Christian Pharisees!

         Then Jesus spoke to the crowds and to His disciples, saying: “The scribes and the Pharisees have seated themselves in the chair of Moses; therefore all that they tell you, do and observe, but do not do according to their deeds; for they say things and do not do them.”

1.  “They tie up heavy burdens and lay them on men’s shoulders, but they themselves are unwilling to move them with so much as a finger.”

2.  “But they do all their deeds to be noticed by men; for they broaden their phylacteries and lengthen the tassels of their garments.”

3.  “They love the place of honor at banquets and the chief seats in the synagogues, and respectful greetings in the market places, and being called Rabbi by men.”

         “But do not be called Rabbi; for One is your Teacher, and you are all brothers. Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven. Do not be called leaders; for One is your Leader, that is, Christ. But the greatest among you shall be your servant. Whoever exalts himself shall be humbled; and whoever humbles himself shall be exalted.”

4.  “But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites, because you shut off the kingdom of heaven from people; for you do not enter in yourselves, nor do you allow those who are entering to go in.”

5.  “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites, because you devour widows’ houses, and for a pretense you make long prayers; therefore you will receive greater condemnation.”

6.  “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites, because you travel around on sea and land to make one proselyte; and when he becomes one, you make him twice as much a son of hell as yourselves.”

7.  “Woe to you, blind guides, who say, ‘Whoever swears by the temple, that is nothing; but whoever swears by the gold of the temple is obligated.’ You fools and blind men! Which is more important, the gold or the temple that sanctified the gold?”

8.  “And, ‘Whoever swears by the altar, that is nothing, but whoever swears by the offering on it, he is obligated.’ You blind men, which is more important, the offering, or the altar that sanctifies the offering?”

         “Therefore, whoever swears by the altar, swears both by the altar and by everything on it. And whoever swears by the temple, swears both by the temple and by Him who dwells within it. And whoever swears by heaven, swears both by the throne of God and by Him who sits upon it.”

9.  “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cummin, and have neglected the weightier provisions of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness; but these are the things you should have done without neglecting the others. You blind guides, who strain out a gnat and swallow a camel!”

10.  “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you clean the outside of the cup and of the dish, but inside they are full of robbery and self-indulgence. You blind Pharisee, first clean the inside of the cup and of the dish, so that the outside of it may become clean also.”

11.  “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which on the outside appear beautiful, but inside they are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness. So you, too, outwardly appear righteous to men, but inwardly you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.”

12.  “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you build the tombs of the prophets and adorn the monuments of the righteous, and say, ‘If we had been living in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partners with them in shedding the blood of the prophets.’ So you testify against yourselves, that you are sons of those who murdered the prophets. Fill up, then, the measure of the guilt of your fathers.”

         “You serpents, you brood of vipers, how will you escape the sentence of hell? Therefore, behold, I am sending you prophets and wise men and scribes; some of them you will kill and crucify, and some of them you will scourge in your synagogues, and persecute from city to city, so that upon you may fall the guilt of all the righteous blood shed on earth, from the blood of righteous Abel to the blood of Zechariah, the son of Berechiah, whom you murdered between the temple and the altar. Truly I say to you, all these things will come upon this generation. Jerusalem, Jerusalem, who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, the way a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were unwilling. Behold, your house is being left to you desolate! For I say to you, from now on you will not see Me until you say, ‘BLESSED IS HE WHO COMES IN THE NAME OF THE LORD!’” [Matthew 23:1-39] [1]

         © 2011 by RJ Dawson. All Rights Reserved.            


[1] Unless otherwise noted all Scriptures are taken from the New American Standard Bible, © 1960, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.

The Declaration of Independence 2011

        On June 7, 1776, Richard Henry Lee of the Virginia House of Burgesses introduced a resolution that essentially became the actual Declaration of Independence. The short document stated thus:

Resolved, that these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States, that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved.

That it is expedient forthwith to take the most effectual measures for forming foreign Alliances.         

That a plan of confederation be prepared and transmitted to the respective Colonies for their consideration and approbation.

        The resolution was debated the next day and then tabled until July 1. In the meantime, a committee was formed to consider the question of independence. It was composed of five members: John Adams, Ben Franklin, Robert Livingston, Roger Sherman, and Thomas Jefferson. Jefferson was enlisted to write the document. After editing, the Declaration was voted upon for acceptance by Congress on July 2, and formally accepted on July 4, 1776. It is interesting to note, however, that it was not actually a declaration of independence. That honor belonged to the resolution of Richard Henry Lee. The original title of the formal document written by Thomas Jefferson was the following:

A Declaration by the Representatives of the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA in General Congress assembled

The final draft adopted on July 4, 1776 contained the more familiar title of:

The Unanimous Declaration of the Thirteen United States of America

         When, in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the laws of nature and of nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation. We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. That whenever any form of government becomes destructive to these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security. Such has been the patient sufferance of these colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former systems of government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute tyranny over these states. To prove this, let facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his assent to laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

He has forbidden his governors to pass laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.

He has refused to pass other laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of representation in the legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.

He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.

He has dissolved representative houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.

He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the legislative powers, incapable of annihilation, have returned to the people at large for their exercise; the state remaining in the meantime exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.

He has endeavored to prevent the population of these states; for that purpose obstructing the laws for naturalization of foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migration hither, and raising the conditions of new appropriations of lands.

He has obstructed the administration of justice, by refusing his assent to laws for establishing judiciary powers.

He has made judges dependent on his will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.

He has erected a multitude of new offices, and sent hither swarms of officers to harass our people, and eat out their substance.

He has kept among us, in times of peace, standing armies without the consent of our legislature.

He has affected to render the military independent of and superior to civil power.

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his assent to their acts of pretended legislation:

For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:

For protecting them, by mock trial, from punishment for any murders which they should commit on the inhabitants of these states:

For cutting off our trade with all parts of the world:

For imposing taxes on us without our consent:

For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of trial by jury:

For transporting us beyond seas to be tried for pretended offenses:

For abolishing the free system of English laws in a neighboring province, establishing therein an arbitrary government, and enlarging its boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule in these colonies:

For taking away our charters, abolishing our most valuable laws, and altering fundamentally the forms of our governments:

For suspending our own legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.

He has abdicated government here, by declaring us out of his protection and waging war against us.

He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burned our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.

He is at this time transporting large armies of foreign mercenaries to complete the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of cruelty and perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the head of a civilized nation.

He has constrained our fellow citizens taken captive on the high seas to bear arms against their country, to become the executioners of their friends and brethren, or to fall themselves by their hands.

He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavored to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian savages, whose known rule of warfare, is undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these oppressions we have petitioned for redress in the most humble terms: our repeated petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have we been wanting in attention to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, enemies in war, in peace friends.

We, therefore, the representatives of the United States of America, in General Congress, assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the name, and by the authority of the good people of these colonies, solemnly publish and declare, that these united colonies are, and of right ought to be free and independent states; that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the state of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as free and independent states, they have full power to levy war, conclude peace, contract alliances, establish commerce, and to do all other acts and things which independent states may of right do. And for the support of this declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor.

New Hampshire: Josiah Bartlett, William Whipple, Matthew Thornton

Massachusetts: John Hancock, Samuel Adams, John Adams, Robert Treat Paine, Elbridge Gerry

Rhode Island: Stephen Hopkins, William Ellery

Connecticut: Roger Sherman, Samuel Huntington, William Williams, Oliver Wolcott

New York: William Floyd, Philip Livingston, Francis Lewis, Lewis Morris

New Jersey: Richard Stockton, John Witherspoon, Francis Hopkinson, John Hart, Abraham Clark

Pennsylvania: Robert Morris, Benjamin Rush, Benjamin Franklin, John Morton, George Clymer, James Smith, George Taylor, James Wilson, George Ross

Delaware: Caesar Rodney, George Read, Thomas McKean

Maryland: Samuel Chase, William Paca, Thomas Stone, Charles Carroll of Carrollton

Virginia: George Wythe, Richard Henry Lee, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Harrison, Thomas Nelson, Jr., Francis Lightfoot Lee, Carter Braxton

North Carolina: William Hooper, Joseph Hewes, John Penn

South Carolina: Edward Rutledge, Thomas Heyward, Jr., Thomas Lynch, Jr., Arthur Middleton

Georgia: Button Gwinnett, Lyman Hall, George Walton

© 2011 by RJ Dawson. All Rights Reserved.

Real Circumcision: Hearts Sewn Up With Blue (Part 2)

         For indeed circumcision is of value if you practice the Law; but if you are a transgressor of the Law, your circumcision has become uncircumcision. So if the uncircumcised man keeps the requirements of the Law, will not his uncircumcision be regarded as circumcision? And he who is physically uncircumcised, if he keeps the Law, will he not judge you who though having the letter of the Law and circumcision are a transgressor of the Law? For he is not a Jew who is one outwardly, nor is circumcision that which is outward in the flesh. But he is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is that which is of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the letter; and his praise is not from men, but from God. [Romans 2:25-29]   

         In writing such things, it is no wonder that Paul was a hunted man. The unbelieving Jews hated him for seemingly making of little consequence the distinguishing mark of ancient Jewish belief. Yet the truth of a circumcised heart was obviously revealed by God, and it relates just as directly to all unbelieving Christians who make their religious service or quasi-Christian beliefs their saving grace. Paul was, of course, a Jew in very good standing. He saw the issue from both sides, first as an unbeliever and later as a disciple of the Lord. The believing Jews, who comprised the great bulk of early disciples, understood what he was saying, as did believing Gentiles, and applied the truth accordingly. They saw that one’s heart must change for the better, and a person must become a new creation.

         See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ. For in Him all the fullness of Deity dwells in bodily form, and in Him you have been made complete, and He is the head over all rule and authority; and in Him you were also circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, in the removal of the body of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ; having been buried with Him in baptism, in which you were also raised up with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead. [Colossians 2:8-12]   

         In spiritual New Covenant terms, physical circumcision is a non-issue:

         Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but what matters is the keeping of the commandments of God. [1 Corinthians 7:19]

         For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything, but faith working through love. [Galatians 5:6]

         For neither is circumcision anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creation. [Galatians 6:15]

         It is the circumcision of the heart by the Spirit of God that really matters. It brings forth:

  • The keeping of the commandments of God
  • Faith working through love
  • A new creation

         From the Jewish perspective, that which Paul was stating was akin to blasphemy. To say that circumcision meant nothing violated the very covenant that God made with Abraham and the entire nation of Israel! Something had changed. For the unbelieving Jews, it was that the original covenant had been violated anyway, since it had become a mere ritual. For the believing Jews, they understood it was about the heart.

         We are warned, therefore, to watch out for the counterfeit. There are many people preaching and believing false gospels. Paul was not the least bit shy, through speaking and writing by the anointing of God, in attacking the enemies of the Lord and those who persisted in bringing forth false teachings. Many in his day claimed to be the real thing. Many others stood up for truth and for the correct teachings of the Lord, regardless of the cost. False believers of today are no different from those of yesteryear.  

         Beware of the dogs, beware of the evil workers, beware of the false circumcision; for we are the true circumcision, who worship in the Spirit of God and glory in Christ Jesus and put no confidence in the flesh… [Philippians 3:2-3]

         The Lord has made a way to not only perform very necessary surgery on unregenerate hearts, but also established a method of remembrance upon them in keeping with an Old Testament type as put forth in the following passage: 

         The LORD also spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to the sons of Israel, and tell them that they shall make for themselves tassels on the corners of their garments throughout their generations, and that they shall put on the tassel of each corner a cord of blue. It shall be a tassel for you to look at and remember all the commandments of the LORD, so as to do them and not follow after your own heart and your own eyes, after which you played the harlot, so that you may remember to do all My commandments and be holy to your God. I am the LORD your God who brought you out from the land of Egypt to be your God; I am the LORD your God.” [Numbers 15:37-41] [1]

         Regardless of suffering and persecution, real Christians serve the Lord Jesus because they love Him. They give their lives as a burnt offering, are washed in His Name, are raised to new life, submit completely to a holy God, and their new circumcised hearts are sewn up with a thread of blue. [Part 2 of 2] 

         © 2011 by RJ Dawson. All Rights Reserved.


[1] Unless otherwise noted all Scriptures are taken from the New American Standard Bible, © 1960, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.