III.D.7 Defaulting from Faith and Patience; The Spirit of Antichrist

  Part III  –  Application to Pentecostal Theology

Subpart D  –  The Positive Confession Movement

 Article 7  –  Defaulting from Faith & Patience; The Spirit of Antichrist

By Daniel Irving

a.  Intro to a Series of Articles Exposing the Error of Positive Confession Theology

b.  Christ’s Work in Negating Natural Means of Attainment

c.  The Breaking of Sin’s Bondage as the Mark of the Covenant

d.  The Headship of the One Who Died for All

e.   Faith in Jesus Christ as the Divinely-Appointed Means for Overcoming Death

f.   The Promises of God Realized through Faith & Patience

g.  The Children of Abraham as Perceptive to God’s Ways

h.  The Satanic Insensibility to God’s Ways

i.   The Shaking of all Foundations

j.   The Spirit of Antichrist

k.  Satanic Headship over the Deceived through Fleshly Confidence

Lucifer falling 01

Article 7 – 


a.  Intro to a Series of Articles Exposing the Error of Positive Confession Theology

There have arisen, in this day, many charismatic ministries which bear the indicia of rejecting the yoke of Christ.  The most fertile soil for such ministries appears to be that provided in Positive Confession theology through its emphasis upon the spoken word as the means of wielding God’s power. Certainly The Positive Confession proclamation that God’s power is to be vested into the hands of men, has been preached abroad as if it were itself the evangelistic message. This corruption of the Gospel has been voraciously consumed by many Christians through the Faith Movement, aka the Faith Message, given its assertion of an assertive and volitional faith as the means of achieving self-determined objectives.  The teaching quickly digresses into such base doctrines as the Prosperity Message, Christian Dominionism, etc. which assert that God’s power may be brandished by men, in such a way as to serve their own material purposes.kenyon ew

Given the witness of the scriptures, such a manifestly perverse doctrine would have been unlikely to have known the degree of success it realized in the twentieth-century had it not been carried on the strength of false spirits, so as to give the corrupted message a vibrancy and a vitality sufficient to overcome sound thinking and the adherence to sound doctrine.

We begin a series of articles which will assess Positive Confession theology in the light of Scripture, and which will implicate Positive Confession teaching as a deception which has done tremendous damage to the twentieth-century Pentecostal renewal, and which continues to play havoc in charismatically-believing assemblies.  Hagin WOFThese were the teachings originated by E.W. Kenyon[1] and effectively advanced by a host of charismatic ministries in the latter half of the twentieth-century, and particularly so by such figures as Kenneth Hagin and Kenneth Copeland.  This article will provide some foundation for articles to come.

b. Christ’s Work in Negating Natural Means of Attainment

The coming of the Lord Jesus Christ, revealed God, in flesh.  This is made clear by Paul, who wrote that in Jesus Christ, “God was manifest in the flesh:”Shepherds Visit

  And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels,  preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.                           I Tim. 3:16

God humbled Himself in the Person of Jesus Christ.[2]  When we follow after the righteousness of Jesus Christ, are forgiven of sin and justified by His blood sacrifice, and thereafter grow in the strength and power of His Spirit as “partakers of the Divine nature,”[3] we become a part of the “mystery of the gospel;” a marvel to be revealed in its time.  Somehow, it is also considered significant by the apostle, that, within this mystery of godliness,” angels did observe this phenomenon of God assuming flesh and blood; the likeness of a fallen creature.

And what did the angels observe?Crucifixion Feet

For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God, sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh.                       Rom. 8:3

The Incarnation of God, His Atoning Death, and His Resurrection; all performed in a human body of flesh and blood, worked a marvelous thing before the eyes of angels. Spiritual principalities, having their authority in the Law, witnessed that authority be not just undermined, but negated entirely in terms of its power to give the creature standing before God:

Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight:  for by the law is the knowledge of sin.               Rom. 3:20

. . nevertheless knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the Law but through faith in Christ Jesus, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, that we may be justified by faith in Christ, and not by the works of the Law; since by the works of the Law shall no flesh be justified.                    Gal. 2:16

The revelation of the Gospel is the negation of the Law as a basis to justify before God.  Therefore, this revelation also removed the Law as the means of attaining unto the dominion over all things, which God decreed, in man’s creation, man should have.  This was a remarkable revelation to spiritual principalities, whose power derived from the Law. Angel 01 Jesus Christ established that true godliness and the authority to rule were founded in another source.  With the coming of Jesus Christ, a revelation was made to angelic authority that had afore been kept hidden from their apprehension, although; “things the angels desire to look into.”[4]  And why should they not have “desire to look into” this matter of God assuming flesh?  For by so doing, humanity found a place above even the angelic realm:

Who is gone into heaven, and is on the right hand of God;  angels and authorities and powers being made subject unto him.                          I Peter 3:22

This occurred because God assumed flesh and blood.  This was a remarkable turning of the tables upon spiritual entities, whose dominion over natural things depended upon their subjugation of humanity.  And what was their power to subjugate humanity?  It was the authority of the Law.  For through the Law, comes Sin, and through Sin, comes . . . Death:

The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law.        I Cor. 15:56

Satan’s authority to subjugate men derived from Death, as the product of the Law’s authority over the sinner.

Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil;                             Heb. 2:14 

And notice what the writer to the Hebrews particularly associates with the overcoming of Death, and so, the Power of the Devil; the Incarnation of God in human flesh and blood.  For we read:

Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and bloodhe also himself likewise took part of the same;                Heb. 2:14

And the result?  Victory over the bondage of Death:

And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.                                                                                      Heb. 2:15

And what does Paul tell us is the cause of Death?  Sin.  Christ’s death and resurrection for sinners, was the breaking of this principle:

For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.                                  Rom. 8:2

c.  The Breaking of Sin’s Bondage as the Mark of the Covenant

If Christ’s death and resurrection for sinners, was the breaking of this principle, then what is the effectual working (or result) of this principle?  Paul tells us:

. . .  sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law but under grace.                                                                                      Rom. 6:14

So what is the sign that the Law has lost its power to condemn?  It is the loss of sin’s control over the sinner.  The breaking of sin’s bondage is the sign of God’s covenant.  Christ’s breaking of the Law’s authority over transgressors is fulfilled in the breaking of Sin’s bondage.  Therefore, this is the mark of the covenant.

For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins.                                                                                      Rom. 11:27Keys

Death is robbed of its power, and therefore the Devil is looted of his treasure in men.

d.  The Headship of the One Who Died for All

Of the atoning death of Christ, Paul writes:

For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge,  that if one died for all, then were all dead:                                      II Cor. 5:14

As “God was manifested in the flesh”[5] in the person of Jesus Christ, God therefore identified with sinful humanity, as a member of the same.  In assuming human form, God made no distinction when the sins of humanity came to bear upon a single member of humanity.  But how could One die for all?  The answer is through His eternal nature as our very Creator.  Therefore Isaiah prophesies:

For thy Maker is thine husband; the LORD of hosts is his name; and thy Redeemer the Holy One of Israel;                       Is. 54:5  

If Jesus Christ had not been our very Maker, He could not have been our Redeemer.  This relationship is made plain by prophecy:Pottery 02

Thus saith the LORD, thy redeemer and he that formed thee from the womb,  I am the LORD that maketh all thingsthat stretcheth forth the heavens alone; that spreadeth abroad the earth by myself;                     Is. 44:24  

As our Creator, Jesus Christ, could stand as One for the Many.  As flesh of our flesh, all authority and judgment were committed to Him.  Jesus said that His Father had:

. . .  given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man.                              John 5:27 

As the head of authority over humanity, Christ stands in the promises Given to man upon His Creation.  John the Baptist 05In assuming His office as the Christ at water baptism, He consented to that role of taking upon Himself the curses that had befallen humanity, but with the reward of all the promises to humanity.  Christ inherited all things through standing in flesh and blood.  This is even the nature of the Person and office of Jesus as the “Christ.”  United to humanity by His flesh, this is how Christ was able to die for the sins of humanity.  Therefore, Jesus Christ’s atoning death for humanity contemplates His headship of humanity, else one from among humanity could not have died for the whole.

Immediately upon speaking of the authority given Him as the Son of Man, Jesus began speaking of resurrection.  His conquering of Death constitutes a message of joy for the elect.  But not only this, His overcoming of Death constitutes a message of terror for the perishing.  For having overcome Death in the body of a man, Christ exposed Death as no covering for Sin.Graveyard 04

Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming,  in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of lifeand they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.                 John 5:28-29

Therefore, any so-called “gospel” which does not lay its emphasis upon the release from sin’s bondage and continuation in holiness through the abiding in the Sprit of Holiness, is incomplete, even “death in the pot.”Death in Pot

So they poured out for the men to eat. And it came to pass, as they were eating of the pottage, that they cried out, and said, “O thou man of God, there is death in the pot.” And they could not eat thereof.                                       II Kings 4:40

But with a fuller teaching of the Gospel, God intimates through this account of Elisha’s miracle, that by calling out to Him, He will heal the breach brought about by an incomplete Gospel message:

But he said, Then bring meal. And he cast it into the pot; and he said, “Pour out for the people, that they may eat.”  And there was no harm in the pot.     II Kings 4:41 

A partial Gospel will perpetuate man’s bondage to Sin, and therefore, the result is Death. By adding what is lacking, God may heal the breach.  The greater danger is that brought by a false Gospel, which works to solidify the bondage to Death via a satanic spirit of deception.  If such a “gospel” comes with signs following, its effect (if not its intent) is to destroy that which Christ came to save; the human soul.

e.  Faith in Jesus Christ as the Divinely-Appointed Means for Overcoming of Death

As earlier quoted of Paul:

. . .  sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law but under grace.                                                                                     Rom. 6:14

But this principle of allowing the Spirit of Life His agency to break the power of Sin and Death does not occur but through the means God has ordained for it to be broken.  What is that means through which the Holy Spirit breaks the power of the Law over the transgressorFaith.

But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul.                                        Heb. 10:39

Faith is the divinely-ordained means of our standing before God in Christ.  For God Himself has provided that object upon which His elect may fix their hope; Jesus Christ and His work on the Cross.  Shepherds VisitThus we perceive why there is that continuous prophetic call to “Behold,” when it comes to the Person and work of Jesus Christ:  “Behold, a virgin shall conceive;” “Behold,  My Servant, whom I uphold, My chosen one in whom My soul delights.  I have put My Spirit upon Him.”  When prophecy begins with the exhortation that we “behold,”[6] it is never without significance.  When we see this word preceding a prophetic declaration, this constitutes a special exhortation that we “see;” that we perceive something very important.  How are we to “behold”?  We “Behold” with our heart.  For a true comprehension will require an awakened heart.  But the object of focus for the awakened heart, is Jesus Christ, and Him alone. 

Man’s inheritance has already been attained for him through the Person and work of Jesus Christ.  Because of this, it is very easy to misunderstand and to presume upon that inheritance, as what has occurred within most of Christiandom.  But God’s word is clear:

Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord.                                              Heb. 12:14

The world perishes by reason of SinSin derives from unbelief. Likewise do those making a profession of faith in Jesus Christ, perish for unbelief, despite that profession.  Were we to believe in the Son of God, Sin would ultimately be conquered in our mortal bodies.[7]  Therefore, ultimately, although we are justified by Faith, the proof of that faith, will be sanctification of the Spirit.  The doctrine of justification does not contravene this principle.  This is, perhaps, the greatest misunderstanding within Christiandom, both today and historically.

Sin will continue to be an issue that separates humanity from God regardless of whether we are in the world, or within the church!  While there is a time of forbearance, prophetically referred to as the “time of the Gentiles” in which the sinner is received into Christ, there is a timetable at work in redemption.  What follows is a shutting of the door upon those whose works continue to exhibit the mark of unbelief, profession or no profession.  Or else, why would John tell us that:

. . . everyone who has this hope fixed on Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.                                                                                      I John 3:2-3

The dynamic is clear; We see something with our heart, and we believe.  We “behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the Sin of the world.”[8]  But although many will be made privy to the witness of Jesus Christ, tragically, they will not believe for the seeing.  Jesus said:

But I said unto you, That ye also have seen me, and believe not.                                                                                      John 6:36 

John tells us that our very resurrection will come as the result of “seeing Him as He is:”Heaven 01

Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be:  but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.                          I John 3:2

Therefore we shall be changed at His appearing by virtue of being able to “see Him as He is,” through the lens of holiness:

Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:      Heb. 12:14

Without “holiness,” we shall not “see the Lord.”  Without seeing the Lord, we shall not be changed at His appearing.  Therefore without holiness, there is no physical resurrection for those that maintain they are the Church of Christ.  Holiness is the essential component of our resurrection.  Therefore, the question becomes, How are we to be made holy?  The answer, is through the very same means; through seeing Him:Christ Teaching 02

Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.”                     John 1:29

There is an inheritance for holiness.  But holiness derives not any other way, but through “beholding the Lamb of God.”  Holiness is the Person of Jesus Christ.  Therefore the inheritance of God belongs exclusively to Him, and to none other.  And through His cross, Christ has chosen to share His Holy nature with humanity, through the means of Faith.

f.  The Promises of God Realized through Faith & Patience

Through faith we are empowered for patienceWe endure, as the Holy Spirit performs the work. Jesus said:

In your patience possess ye your souls.                               Luke 21:19

Possess our souls, as opposed to what?  What is the alternative to possessing our own souls?  By implication, rather than having another than Christ possess them.  For we are preserving them for the coming of the Lord.  If they are possessed by the spirit of this world, then they are not available for the work of the Spirit by which He would sanctify us.

What are we told is necessary for the working of patience?  “Tribulation.”  Paul tells the Romans:

And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also; Knowing that tribulation worketh patience& patience, experience, & experience, hope; & hope, maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts  by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.                            Rom. 5:3-5

Paul provides us with the process of redemption beginning with that essential element of progress in the kingdom, ie. tribulationFlood 11 Paul is describing the Divine process by which God sanctifies His elect.  Because this is a Divine process, therefore it is also Divinely-ordained tribulation having purpose in a Divinely-induced patience.  God will appoint for us times of testing and tribulation through which we are to endure patiently.  What are we to endure?  Anything unpleasant that requires enduring.  If we are persecuted because of our hope in God’s kingdom, we endure it:

So that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions & tribulations that you endure.:             II Thess. 1:4

Whatever we find difficult in the world, we endure for the sake of our profession:

Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.   II Tim. 2:3

Sometimes, what we must endure comes directly from God in the form of Divine chastisement:

If ye endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons;  for what son is he whom the father chastens not?        Heb. 12:7

For the elect, there are a variety of things to endure that the world is generally not called upon to endure.  But we should consider that we have laid for ourselves a good foundation in Christ.    Therefore, it is God who says; “I will now allow you to glorify Me through what I have wrought heretofore in you through My Son.”  Jesus glorified His Father in suffering the things He suffered.[9]  Suffering for the Divine-purpose entails a glory which we cannot imagine in our present life.

But what would be the alternative to patiently enduring?  Acting-out impatiently and spoiling God’s purpose in calling us.  Such would be a very sad result indeed.  Therefore we are told that it is through “faith and patience, we inherit the promises.”[10]

In this way, humanity may share in that inheritance of eternal life and made partaker in the nature of God.  Heaven 01But humanity only has a part through the means of Faith.  In this way, the integrity of eternal life is kept within the power of God’s hand, to disperse as He wills; not as we will.

The work of God is performed when a man has seen something of God’s revelation of Himself; which is Christ, and obediently endures in that knowledge. This is the path to greater revelation knowledge.  This was the path taken by Moses, of whom we are told:

By faith he forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king: for he endured, as seeing him who is invisible.                        Heb 11:27  

However, there is a boundary between Faith and Presumption that is crossed when men reject patience as the means of preserving their souls.

g.  The Children of Abraham as Perceptive to God’s Ways

Jesus Christ revealed the Person of God to men through the empowerment of Faith to break the bondage to Sin and Death.  This is the work of God; This is the way of God; This is where His heart is; This is His very purpose in creating man.  The receipt of this principle of Faith is what brought God to refer to Abraham as His friend.

And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed Godand it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.                                                                                      James 2:23Abraham Counts Stars

And so all of Abraham’s children, as numerous as the stars of heaven, consist of those granted of God the ability to receive through the means God has ordained; through the means of Faith.  Therefore Isaiah prophesies:

But thou, Israel, art my servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, the seed of Abraham, my friend.                   Is. 41:8

But, sadly, there are many who cannot receive God’s ways.  They presume for themselves a status on the basis of their own efforts.  However, God will disabuse these of the Law through the means of their own conscience.

The preaching of the Gospel will equip even the unbeliever with sufficient information to know better than to assert a means other than Faith for attaining unto the kingdom of God.  Therefore, while the majority of men will assert Faith by doctrine, yet many perceive Faith wrongly.  Lacking true faith, which is an abiding trust in God, they perceive Faith, as itself, something to be attained.  Therefore, they perceive Faith as itself a force to be acquired and controlled by their own hand.  But God will not allow it, as Paul makes clear:Pharaoh with Dead Son

What shall we say then?  There is no injustice with God, is there? May it never be! For He says to Moses, “I WILL HAVE MERCY ON WHOM I HAVE MERCY, & I WILL HAVE COMPASSION ON WHOM I HAVE COMPASSION.” So then it does not depend on the man who wills or the man who runs, but on God who has mercy.  For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, “FOR THIS VERY PURPOSE I RAISED YOU UP,  TO DEMONSTRATE MY POWER IN YOU, & THAT MY NAME MIGHT BE PROCLAIMED THROUGHOUT THE WHOLE EARTH.”  So then He has mercy on whom He desires, & He hardens whom He desires.                  Rom. 9:14-18

This is a difficult truth to work into our understanding.  For in our hearts, we always believe that we retain the ability and the autonomy to come unto Christ for salvation.  But this is not an accurate understanding of salvation.  The ministration of Grace is what breaks the power of sin.  This can occur as a dramatic and sudden transaction, or it can occur by increments, and usually, by bothGrace is the irresistible force that operates on the day of salvation whether we be “far off” or “near” in respect to the Lord and His truth.[11]

We might perceive, then, why Grace is so precious as to be reserved for the sovereignty of God to minister.  It is not for the man to transact as he would upon a contract.  Therefore God says, “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy,”[12] and He will withhold mercy upon whom He will.  He will even harden men and angels unto destruction.  For this is God’s peculiar treasure which He has purchased Himself through the sacrifice of His Son, the fruit of which is the very knowledge of Himself.  Faith is the gift of God;  It is not self-procured, except at our own peril.

h.  The Satanic Insensibility to God’s Ways

The children of the Devil cannot receive God’s ways because they cannot hear what God is saying.  God’s ways require a special ear.  The hearing ear, is a metaphor for Faith.

Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word.                                                                                      John 8:43

The children of the Devil are the non-believing.  But they are not necessarily the non-professingNon-belief, is to have seen a thing, and yet to persist in unbelief.    Recall the Lord’s words to those Jews who were professing belief in His person.  Even though they refer to Him as “Lord”, He tells them:

“But I said to you, that you have seen Me, and yet do not believe.”                                                                    John 6:36

So much for a profession of faith as constituting “belief!”  Those professing Jesus to be the Christ, somehow, constituted the most deluded of all men.  For they had not the excuse of ignorance.  Even having been privy to the manifestation of God, they did not “believe the report.” This was remarkable to John, who later laments using the words of Isaiah, saying:

  But though he had done so many miracles before them, yet they believed not on him: That the saying of Esaias the prophet might be fulfilled, which he spake, Lord, who hath believed our report? and to whom hath the arm of the Lord been revealed?                                                                                      John 12:37-38

Were they now free to simply walk away and live their lives as other men?  They were no longer any other men.  They were those “to whom the Gospel was preached,” of whom Jesus said:

“If He called them ‘gods’, to whom the word of God came (and the Scripture cannot be broken),                  John 10:35

Somehow the gospel of God works a change in the man regardless of whether he succeeds unto eternal life.  He can no longer rest in the ignorance of his flesh.  He has seen the light, and now it is for him to either walk in the light, or to choose darkness.  “Choose this day” was the ultimatum delivered by Joshua after the people saw the land.[13]Illumined from Above 01

“And this is the judgment; that the light is come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the light; for their deeds were evil.                       John 3:19

They were no longer able to die as men.  They had seen too much of God to reject the Light without an elevated consequence.  Therefore the prophecy declares:

I have said, “Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the Most High.  But ye shall die like men, and fall like one of the princes.             Ps. 82:6-7

They had been made privy to the spectacle of angels.  The mortal had been elevated to the destruction decreed for the other competitors with God; the “gods” so-called.  This should be a warning that light is not rejected without consequence.  Therefore, the Devil’s children are revealed within the same Light they reject. Recall the Lord’s words to the unbelieving:

Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word.                                                                                      John 8:43

What revealed them as children of the Devil?  Seeing in unbelief.

They did not have residing within themselves that which would allow them to receive the Truth- manifested.  God’s ways require Faith; not “faith” as an assertive chasing after signs or after blessing, but as an ear that perceives the truth when once it is spoken.  Having not this ear, the children of the Devil cannot receive God’s ways, as much as they may try.  Their efforts shall drive them rather to action against God’s witness of Himself.

i.   The Shaking of all Foundations

As the Savior of the world, Jesus is to be given a kingdom.  Until that kingdom is come, He is as Prince in waiting.  Recall the parable of the talents, wherein the Lord is represented as a “certain nobleman who went to a distant country to receive a kingdom.”[14]  In regards to this kingdom, there are opponents and usurpers who occupy positions of great authority in the heavens.  However, the truth is that Christ only has ascended:

  Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come:    Eph. 1:21

While the Lord Jesus Christ occupies the place of all authority, there continues to be disobedience and rebellion in this present age.  The question arises of why has Christ not asserted His ascendant power in order to force the kingdom of God upon men.  We know that one day He will do exactly that, as is proclaimed by the twenty-four elders before the throne, who fell on their faces:Elders 24

Saying, “We give Thee thanks, O Lord God, the Almighty, who art and who wast, because Thou hast taken Thy great power and hast begun to reign.        Rev. 11:17

This shall be an overwhelming and devastating power of a type we do not understand nor could we comprehend, as it is a power which even transcends material things.  It is a power commanding the material and the spiritual realms.

And His voice shook the earth then, but now He has promised, saying, “YET ONCE MORE I WILL SHAKE NOT ONLY THE EARTH, BUT ALSO THE HEAVEN.”  And this expression, “Yet once more,” denotes the removing of those things which can be shaken, as of created things,  in order that those things which cannot be shaken may remain.                                                                                      Heb. 12:26-27

If there is coming a second time when God shakes both heaven and earth, what was the first time there was a “shaking?”Sinai 01

The shaking of Mt.Sinai bears allusion to the threats of the Law as portending Death.  God bears a witness in this world concerning his indignation upon Sin.  The witness of the Law is a vital witness which must be believed.  While the Pharisees paid service to the Law, they did not truly receive its witness.  Thus Jesus said to them:

 “Do not think that I will accuse you before the Father; the one who accuses you is Moses, in whom you have set your hope.  For if you believed Moses, you would believe Me; for he wrote of Me.  But if you do not believe his writings, how will you believe My words?”                   John 5:45-47

Although religious, they did not truly believe the doctrines they presumably received.  And this is very true for much of “Church” in our day, who do not believe the apostolic witness concerning the condemnatory power of Sin, nor the power of the Gospel to deliver there-from.  But the apostolic witness is clear for those who have resorted to Christ:

“. .  sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.            Rom. 6:14

But to believe anything less, is to believe that Sin continues to reign supreme; that the victory of Christ over the grave never occurred.  Through unbelief, the religious-professor of Christ makes peace with the enemy of God that is Sin.  In making peace with Sin, they have entered into covenant with Death.  But the life, the death, and the resurrection of Jesus Christ have contravened any refuge in Death.  Thus the prophecy:

  And your covenant with death shall be disannulled,  and your agreement with hell shall not stand;          Is. 28:18

To make a “covenant with death” is to have agreement with, or make accommodation for Sin to persist of its dominion over us.  How could the Bible-believing do such a thing?

Here is where faith plays a crucial role in salvation.  For while it is by faith that we “live unto Christ,” it is also by faith that we “die unto the Law.”  If we believed Moses, and the shakings at Mt.Sinai, we would believe the witness of life in Christ as well. Michaelangelo Rome Does Moses bear a true witness?  He bears a true witness, and one that leads to death:

And I was once alive apart from the Law; But when the commandment came, sin became alive, and I died;  And this commandment which was to result in life, proved to result in death for me; for sin, taking opportunity through the commandment, deceived me, and through it killed me..           Rom. 7:9-11

The Law bears a true witness which we cannot measure up to, though we try.  Therefore the problem for the religiously-minded (and as well, the Pharisee) is not that they believe the Law’s witness, their problem is rather that they don’t.  For it is a witness against their works, against the deceits of their heart, and testifies by a defiled conscience.  If there was any faith in God at work, they would cease their resistance to acknowledging the uncleanness of their motives, ambitions, desires, and intents of their heart.  Pharisee 02Since they do not truly receive the former witness, they cannot even begin to consider the latter witness.  Therefore the Lord says:

“You search the Scriptures, because you think that in them you have eternal life; and you are unwilling to come to Me, that you may have life.”     John 5:39-40

Therefore, while the vain professor of Christ seeks after eternal life, and while they rely upon a distorted definition of Faith to presume themselves heirs to the promises of God, they have not received the witness that is prerequisite to receiving the One Who is the true heir of the promises of God, even Jesus Christ, His Son, and ours.

Failing to perceive the condemnation of the Law upon their evil works, thoughts, and intents, they maintain a level of comfort within Sin’s dominion, as if in agreement with Death itself.  This is “Death” with a capital “D,” ie. Death as a personage.    By making an agreement with Death, who are they now in league with?[15]

. . . he that had the power of death, that is, the Devil.               Heb. 2:14

But if men will not believe Moses, how will they believe even if One were to rise from the dead?[16]  If they fail to receive the witness of their own corruption and its eternal consequence in damnation, then what good would it do them for God to reveal the Gospel of Christ to their heart so as to deliver them from that bondage?  Therefore, these must suffer the ultimate terror of the loss of their spiritual underpinnings when God shakes not only earth, but heaven as well.

j.  The Spirit of Antichrist

If perfection of design was the means of attaining, then Satan would have attained.  If the champion over God’s creation, earned his place through strength, charm, intelligence, or eloquence, then the “anointed cherub that covereth”[17] would be the likely ruler over all things.  For it is prophesied of him:Angel of Light

. . . Thou sealest up the sum, full of wisdom, and perfect in beauty.                                             Ez. 28:12

But consider what shall be the end of the very perfection of beauty and of wisdom:

Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness: I will cast thee to the ground, I will lay thee before kings, that they may behold thee.   Thou hast defiled thy sanctuaries by the multitude of thine iniquities, by the iniquity of thy traffick; therefore will I bring forth a fire from the midst of thee, it shall devour thee, and I will bring thee to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold thee.  All they that know thee among the people shall be astonished at thee:   thou shalt be a terror, and never shalt thou be any more.                                           Ez. 28:17-19

In all its endeavors, labors, battles, and commerce, the world strives by those means affirmed by the “god of this world.”  The means used by this world involve natural principles under the authority of the spiritual agency of the Law.[18]  But the Gospel of Jesus Christ overturned these premises and exposed the assumption upon which satanic power is based, as a Lie.  This Lie is spiritual because so is the Law spiritual.  Thus Deception flows in the spirit of Unbelief.  And, just as Faith constitutes a dynamic power unto salvation, so does unbelief in the face of God’s witness of Himself constitute a dynamic power unto perdition. This is the spirit of Antichrist. This is the spirit who empowers those that have seen, and yet do not believe.

Recall there was a time when many turned away from following Christ while standing in His very presence.  Therefore he told them, “But there are some of you who do not believe.”  This was apparently a significant statement, for John then tells us, “For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were who did not believe, and who it was that would betray Him.”[19]  Therefore, this rejection of Christ as having spiritual rather than earthly significance by those that walked so close to Him, constituted a sacrilege even warranting the Lord’s reference to Judas Iscariot.  Notice now, the verse that documents their turning away:

As a result of this many of His disciples withdrew, and were not walking with Him anymore.                               John 6:66

While the verse numbering may be coincidental, or may have been by man’s design, consider that it is clearly stated that antichrist arises from those whom the Lord had called, but ultimately disbelieved:

Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time.  They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us.                   I John 2:18-19

Thus a turning back and forsaking of the covenant in the blood of Christ once the covenant has been manifested to us through God’s testimony concerning His Holy Nature, would appear to have a most horrific meaning.

k.  Satanic Headship over the Deceived through Fleshly Confidence

As well-covered above, the unbelieving heart perceives there to be an attaining to be performed, other than the attaining which comes through faith in God, which is ministered unto us by God.  Faith cannot work in the unbelieving so as to allow them to hope in things unseen.

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.                                                                                    Heb 11:1

This is the walk of faith.  We cannot see, and still we believe, much to the derision of the worldly-minded, who by means strengthening themselves in the god of this world, excel the elect in terms of earthly wisdom:Pride 02

“. . . for the children of this world are in their generation wiser than the children of light.”                                                            Luke 16:8

Mankind may have a wisdom from God, but it is only the wisdom given them by God for this present world.[20]  It is not the wisdom of the age to come, and it is not the true wisdom that belongs to mankind as heir to the things of God in Christ.  And so it is for anything good the world possesses, whether it be any; goodness, integrity, beauty, intelligence, peace, knowledge, vibrancy, or anything beneficial in this present life.  They possess a form of wisdom that will fade with this world.  In possessing such wisdom, they actually conduct themselves wiser in this world than do the children of light.  For they have a form of strength which the elect of Christ have forfeited for the sake of eternal life.  The children of this age, are therefore occupied with the “arm of the flesh.”[21]

Therefore, the spirit of unbelief occupies itself with the flesh.  Pride 01What the natural eye can see; what the natural ear can hear; what the natural mind can comprehend, these, the carnally-minded follow after.  The spirit of unbelief hears natural eloquence through a natural ear, and follows.  The spirit of unbelief processes natural wisdom with a natural mind, and follows.  In this way, the carnal man follows the empowerment of Satan within the carnal men.  Through this means, Satan is glorified and maintained in his rule over men.  Thus we read:

And they worshiped the dragon which gave power unto the beast; and they worshipped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast?  who is able to make war with him?                                                                                      Rev. 13:4

Here then, is the Lie that condemns.  For this is the Lie which leads men to worship Satan, strengthening his hold upon humanity, and allowing Satan to thereby manifest in humanity to greater degree.  Satan’s manifestation within humanity must operate within the context of a Lie, ie. a deception, to succeed.

In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.                 II Cor. 4:4

Thus, it is necessary for Satan to blind men through deception if he will maintain his authority over them.  Angel of LightThrough deception, he may gain greater possession over the man, allowing him to invest his image and personality in him to greater extent. This becomes increasingly necessary as the kingdom of God shines truth upon a man’s conscience and raises his awareness of Divine things.  To maintain his kingdom in this world against the advance of the kingdom of God, requires a more robust display of the counterfeit.  Thus Satan is declared as the false light, destroying the unbelieving.

How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning!  how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!              Is. 14:12 

[1] See the earlier article in this Subpart relating the formulation of Positive Confession theology.

[2] Philippians 2:8

[3] II Peter 1:4

[4] I Peter 1:12

[5] I Timothy 3:16

[6] H2005  hên  hane  A primitive particle; lo! also (as expressing surprise) if: – behold, if, lo, though.

[7] Romans 6:6 “  . that our body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin.”

[8] John 1:29

[9] John 12:27-28

[10] Hebrews 6:12

[11] Isaiah 57:19  “Peace, peace, to those far and near.  And I will heal them.”

[12] Romans 9:15

[13] Joshua 24:15  And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve;

[14] Luke 19:12

[15] See commentary on Hosea 13:14

[16] Luke 16:31

[17] Ezekiel 28:14 Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so; thou was upon the holy mountain of God; thou has walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire.

[18] Romans 7:14  For I know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin.

[19] John 6:64

[20] I Corinthians 1:20, 2:4, 2:6, 2:13, 3:19, II Corinthians 1:12

[21] Jeremiah 17:5


About Lamp-Stand

I was converted to the faith of Jesus Christ in 1982 at which time I received water baptism and Spirit baptism. In the Spring of 2008 I was led of the Spirit through a process of repentance upon which I had an encounter with Christ that worked a profound change upon my inner being. I became aware that I had been forgiven a great debt of sin. I soon felt the Lord's direction that I close my office that my energies not be divided from the study of doctrine.
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