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WHAT’S IN A NAME?

Ephraim IV

“Wherefore Yehovah said unto Solomon, Forasmuch as this is done of you and you have not kept My covenant and My statutes, which I commanded you, I will surely rend the kingdom from you and will give it to your servant” (I Kings 11:11)

The sovereign command of Yehovah God over all things is the only explanation for the congruous interaction of everything in the universe and the power of His will is the cause by which each event comes to pass moment by moment. This absolute authority and superintendence is His elite right by which He has assigned time, space and the particulars of each fragment of creation. He has fashioned each speck according to exact design specifications commensurate to the labour which He has foreordained essential to His purpose and made has them each completely compatible with each other. Thus He has purposed, thus He has spoken and thus all things come to pass in their appointed time each and every portion accountable for the conduct of their station. A bird does not fly, nor a bolder crumble; a deed is not done nor a condition altered; a thought is not entertained nor an action engaged but by the eternal decree of the absolute sovereignty of Yehovah of Hosts the Lord God Omnipotent.

Within the confines of the jurisdiction of God, which is all inclusive, He has decreed that every man should perform, without possibility of failure, every thought, word and deed of his allotment. The secret and hidden desires, of which even the individual is not totally cognizant of, have been carefully ordered and established by the great King over all the earth. These passions are sensual and completely centered about the needs of the flesh. They are driven by a heart that has been deceived by pride and blinded in the arrogance of self-worth; “The deceitful heart is above all and desperately wicked: who can know it?” (Jer. 17:9)

Within each vessel that has been outfitted for destruction, according to the eternal hatred of God, the wicked one has planted the tare, which is the seed of the serpent. These are the children of disobedience which peacefully cohabit with the limited carnal nature of Adam who, having been perfectly equipped, perform the works of their father, the Devil. They are bruit beasts made to be taken out and destroyed whom God has reserved unto the Day of Judgment yet they function as necessary elements in the mastery and precision of this existence. God has appointed them to be the servants of the children of promise, as Esau is unto Jacob, as the pilgrims wander through the wilderness of this world. Each one of them having a purpose in the time appointed unto them, with labours that must be performed along the path they must walk in the pageantry of creation. These have not formed their vessels, neither did they select the seed within nor are they the selectors or directors of the duties which must needs be performed; thus whatsoever they think, do or say in the course of the time of their habitation is in perfect harmony with the will of God.

The objection of the diminutive understanding of the sons of Adam is “Why does He yet find fault, for who has resisted His will? Nay but O man, who are you that replies against God? Shall the things formed say to Him that formed; Why have You made me this way? Does not the potter have power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour and another unto dishonour?” (Rms. 9:19). Is there injustice with the purpose of God? Has He strayed from His purpose and formed something His heart did not intend? Is He a respecter of persons that He should consult with the man before He fashioned him from the dust of the earth; or has He ordained from old the specifications of both the natural man and the seed within commensurate to His eternal will?

The earthen vessel, being dust, returns unto the dust while the children of disobedience stand before the judgment seat being judged according to their works (Rev. 20:12).Then shall the Son of man send forth His angels and they shall gather the tares from the field. Thus shall be removed out of His kingdom all things that offend and them which do iniquity and they shall be cast into the furnace: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father; he, who has ears to hear, let him hear.

He has also, from the same lump of clay which is Adam, afore prepared vessels unto the glory of being the recipients of an incorruptible seed. The seed of man is temporal and corrupt being completely devoid of the ability to ‘hit the mark’ of absolute perfection. This outward man walks by sight, lives through carnal reasoning and is sustained by that which fades away. Within the earthen vessel dwells no good thing and thus the house must have been cleansed and swept, removing the leaven from within the borders of the house. This is the preparatory work which God has done for the seed that should be planted. Just as the type of the children of Israel, the inside of the habitation was cleansed and the outer doorways were struck with the blood to protect and preserve the chosen children within. Though the Angel of Yehovah brought death to the first born of the ‘great house’ yet the children of hope remained within with the Pascal Lamb being cleansed of all unrighteousness by the blood and covered in the atonement.

The natural seed is drawn away after the desires of the flesh in the constant care and maintenance of the body and will never rise above the temporal plane. The works of the flesh are not worthy to be presented before the perfection of holiness and by the keeping of the Law in type no flesh shall ever be justified before God. All who are born of woman come forth from the womb to walk the path which leads back to the dust and as these earthen pitchers are consumed by the Refiner’s Fire without, the incorruptible seed within grows in the grace and knowledge of His will unto the Holy habitation of Emmanuel; “And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold the tabernacle of God with men and He will dwell with them and they shall be His people and God Himself shall be with them their God” (Rev. 21:3).

When the race is run and all labours have been completed the residue of the stubble, which is the house of Edom, shall have been consumed in the fire of Judah and the flame of Joseph (Ob. 18). Then when the time of this habitation is over and these tabernacles of this dwelling are put off, all limitations shall be abandoned as the eternal children stand before their Father. Here the children of grace shall stand before Him in the beauty of His Holiness where; “As I live said Yehovah, every knee shall bow to Me and every tongue shall confess to God; so then every one of us shall give account of himself to God” (Rms. 14:12). Time shall have no influence upon them as the reality of eternity is manifested where the bondage of this vanity is forgotten for the Redeemed of Yehovah have been delivered from the body of death. Then, like Elisha’s servant, the eyes shall be opened to see the sons of God assembled together, being one as He is one, in the Holy city; “and there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defiles neither works abomination or a lie but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of life” (Rev. 21:27)

This is not to infer that a child of grace, for whom the blood of the Lamb has been shed, shall have their sin in Adam called into judgment before God. The perfect sacrifice for sin became the sin of His people as that sin was laid upon the head of the Lamb of God slain from the foundation of the world. This imputation whereby He took upon Himself the sin and became the sin of His people was to the intent that the Holy flesh should not be contaminated and unclean by coming in contact with a dead body (Hag. 2:12). Thus He removed that sin as far as the east is from the west and it can never be brought into account again (Ps. 103:12) while the shed blood has cleansed His people from their inability in Adam (I John 1:7).

This precious blood also serves as a covering for the incorruptible seed that should be made partaker of flesh and blood. The posts of this temporary habitation have been struck with the blood in the same manner that the door posts were struck upon the houses wherein the children of Israel dwelt in Egypt. The wrath of God, which is poured out upon the ungodliness of man, is stayed from His chosen people for it was poured out in measure upon He who “is despised and rejected of men, a man of sorrow and acquainted with grief; and we hid as it were our faces from Him for He was despised and we esteemed Him not. Surely He has borne our griefs and carried out sorrows, yet we did esteem Him stricken, smitten of God and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace upon Him and with His stripes we are healed” (Is. 53:3f).

“Notwithstanding in your days I will not do this for the sake of David, your father: I will rend it out of the hand of your son” (12)

Solomon, like every other son of the dust, gave full and hearty exhibition of his inherent inability being deceived by the pride of the heart, enticed by the allurement of the eyes and drawn away after the desires of the flesh. He was properly outfitted by the hand of God to follow after the quest of his heart and to seek out those things which gave pleasure to the appetite of man. The passion of his undertaking along the path he walked set him at liberty to hold nothing back giving himself completely to this crusade. He completely fulfilled the perfect will of God as he experienced every vice available and the conclusions he came to were unto the praise and glory of God but the end of the matter did not justify the means.

God commanded Moses to instruct the children of Israel that they were not to become involved with the people of the land. He commanded them to “utterly destroy them. You shall make no covenant with them nor shew mercy unto them; neither shall you make marriage with them. Your daughters you shall not give unto his son nor take his daughter unto your son; for they shall turn away your son from following Me that they may serve other gods: so will the anger of Yehovah be kindled against you and destroy you suddenly” (Deut. 7:2ff). Yet as the children of Israel, being a stiff-necked and rebellious people in Adam, could not refrain from the enticements of the fruit of the land, the comradery of the nations and their gregarious nature. Likewise Solomon, in his wisdom and fame, loved many women of the people of the land.

The determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God ordained, facilitated and consummated that Solomon should be the wisest man upon the face of the earth. The magnificent purpose of Yehovah prepared the stage of time for these events to ‘come to pass’, with all necessary conditions, props and actors. He fashioned and turned the hearts and minds of people of every nation to revere the King of Israel through signs and wonders which He worked in and through His servant. He indicted their passion, stimulated their thoughts and agitated their curiosity, moving them with purpose to seek out Solomon for his wisdom and understanding. Even today, many compare acts of wisdom and understanding to the Wisdom of Solomon and thus the standard is exalted above the God and the man is worshipped more than the Creator.

This man was raised up as the son of the Beloved to be the King of Peace as an earthly representation of the Word of God. The Spirit of God was upon him, he reigned over all of Israel and as He spoke, so it came to pass. Not that this man had the power of God to speak matter into existence or that his words contradicted the will of God, but Yehovah God had endued this servant with such insights of the truth that his words were irrefutable by man. His ears were so fine tuned by the Spirit of God to hear and discern between the prevarications of man and the simplicity of fact that his conclusions made the people who heard him wonder in amazement. He did the work that was assigned unto him and spoke that which he was given of God so that the wise men and scholars were confounded.

He also stands as a prophetic type of Messiah in that all the promises of Yehovah were fulfilled when Solomon ascended to the throne. The boundaries of the land were as the promise of God had foretold, all the promises made unto Abram, Moses and David had come to pass so that not one word had fallen to the ground but all had been manifested (I Kings 8:56). The irresistible will of God had given a temporal manifestation of the eternal reality through Solomon but the very thing that gave Solomon his acclaim was also his demise. His heart was lifted up in his magnificent success which stood as the proof of his inherent inability to ‘hit the mark’ and be obedient unto God. His wisdom enabled him to understand the ways of man and this was a deep pain unto his soul. The gift of God was to understand the vanity of this world and the unprofitableness of all the labour and to see that the world was full of this emptiness.

When Solomon was full of age, his heart was not perfect with Yehovah God and was swiftly drawn away from following Yehovah God as he followed and sought after that which made a man happy, content and fulfilled. His love for many women came to the conclusion as the Word of Yehovah came to pass as He had foretold and Solomon was abased as quickly as he had ascended. He built high places to Chemosh the abomination of Moab and for Molech the abomination of the children of Ammon. He went after Ashtoreth the goddess of the Zidonians and after Milcom the abomination of the Ammonites and Solomon did evil in the sight of Yehovah and went not fully after Yehovah as David his father (I Kings 11:4ff).

Had Solomon fallen from grace or lost his temporal salvation? Since the testimony of the scriptures proclaims that the children of grace are blessed with all spiritual blessings in the heavens, what are temporal blessing? Do these include the basic necessities of life incumbent to the natural bodily functions such as, eating, sleeping, shelter and clothes to wear? Do they cover the subjects of wealth, influence, acclaim and popularity? These are given of God to all men and the abundance of them is moreso unto the inhabitants of this world rather than the children of the Kingdom. Since therefore the eternal blessing cannot be affected by the temporal actions what blessings are forfeited by disobedience? When the Prophet confronted King David concerning his improprieties with Bath-sheba and the murder of her husband, did David cease to be a man after the heart of Yehovah? (I Sam. 13:14) Did Solomon lose his sonship to the Father? Had his actions caused the incorruptible seed to be corrupted? Or is it as purported, that he lost his temporal salvation? (What ever that is!)

Has not the Father given unto His children “all things pertaining to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him that has called us to glory and purity” (II Pt. 1:3)? Did not Messiah declare that they which are poor, meek and sorrowful, who hunger and thirst after righteousness, are blessed of Yehovah (Matt. 5:3fff)? And are not His people chosen in the furnace of affliction for the proving of the faith within and the destruction of the flesh without? Did He not leave the people of the land amongst the nation of Israel and prevent them from utterly destroying them “to prove Israel by them” (Judg. 3:1)? And did not the woman, whom Solomon loved, prove that he was after the seed of Adam, drawn away after the lusts of his heart and as incapable of being obedient in the flesh to the word of God as his father Adam was?

The promise of the Word is that it is the Father’s will to give the Kingdom unto His Beloved children. Is this Kingdom of this world? Does His Kingdom consist of the luxuries and pleasantries of life, the comradery and fellowship with the inhabitants of this world and the respect and reverence of the fellow man? Is His Temple built with the mortar and bricks formed from the clay of the ground and assembled by the corrupt hands of man? NO, for Jesus said; “My Kingdom is not of this world. If My Kingdom were of this world than would My servants fight that I should not be delivered to the Jews but now is My Kingdom not from hence” (John 18:36). And does not the lifting up of man’s tool upon the altar of God pollute it? Indeed it does (Ex. 20:25)!

And what reference may be offered for a ‘time salvation’. The salvation of Yehovah (Jehoshua) is eternal for He is the eternal Father (Is. 9:6) and fullness of the Godhead in bodily appearance (Col. 2:9). The Lamb stood, being raised up, as He had been slain from the foundation of the world. God finished His work in the seventh day and He rested from ALL His works. He is seated in heaven, ruling over the kingdoms and inhabitants of this world and in the fullness of time, God sent forth His Son to manifest the grace that was given unto His children before the world began; “who has abolished death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel” (II Tim. 1:9f).

The entire house of Israel, representing the Israel of our God, was delivered into Egypt by the hand of God for their preservation and protection through the envy, strife and hatred of the sons of Jacob. They were delivered into the double bondage of the ‘great house’ (Pharaoh) to make them a mighty nation and they were delivered out of Egypt and into the wilderness by the same outstretched hand of Almighty God. Which of these was the eternal deliverance and which was the time salvation? “Hear Israel, Yehovah, our God Yehovah, is one” (Deut. 6:4).

He is the same yesterday, today and forever and He does not change. He is “not a man that he should lie or the son of man that He should repent: has He said and shall He not do? Or has He spoken and shall He not make it good” (Num. 23:19)? The eternal seed is preserved and sanctified in the eternal Anointed Salvation of Yehovah and nothing can separate them from His eternal love.

Solomon came into this world under less than honourable circumstances. He ascended to the throne in complete deference to the customs of the people or proper protocol. He was endowed by Yehovah God with the anointing to be ruler in Israel and the wisdom and understanding to lead the people. The Supreme Master predestinated Solomon unto power and majesty but, so that NO flesh should glory in His presence, He also predestinated that this child of grace should walk into the valley of the shadow of death in blindness and ignorance. “Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God and keep His commandments; this is for the whole of man” (Ecc. 12:13).

“And Yehovah stirred up an adversary unto Solomon: Hadad the Edomite of the seed of the king of Edom” (I Kings 11:14)

God sent forth His Word and there was light. He divided the light from the darkness and placed a great gulf between them which none can cross. He also demonstrated this decree of distinction as He separated the heavens from the heavens, the firmament from the waters and the dry land from the waters. He continued in this manifestation of His mode of operation as he separated the seed of the plants from the seed of the animals and those from the seed of man. He took the man He had created complete, having his seed in him, and causing a great sleep to come upon him, God separated the woman from man. He separated the man, endued with the knowledge of good and evil, from the garden and the tree of life. He made distinction between the acceptable gift of Abel and the fruit of the land which came from Cain for which Cain separated his brother from this mortal existence. He separated the old world of creation from the new heavens and new earth by reason of the great deluge and when the whole earth was of one language He separated man from man; Because Yehovah did there confound the language of all the earth and from thence did Yehovah “scatter them abroad upon the face of the earth” (Gen. 11:9).

He separated Abram from his father’s house and made him a great nation and when his grandsons struggled in the womb He announced; “Two nations are in your womb and two manner of people shall be separated from your bowels; and one people shall be stronger than the other people and the elder shall serve the younger” (25:23). Now the elder was Esau, who is Edom for whom God has an eternal hatred and has reserved eternal judgment. The younger, Jacob, is the child of promise for whom God has an eternal love wherein He has prepared an eternal abode in the New Jerusalem. Edom/Esau has from the beginning harboured an inveterate hatred for Jacob, not because Jacob swindled him out of his inheritance and the blessing of Isaac, but because God had separated them from the beginning. The actions which precipitated the natural geographic separation between them came to a climax when Esau sought to kill him; therefore he fled to Padan-aram. (Gen. 27:41).

Esau earnestly desired to regain the blessing of his father which he could not have, though he sought it with tears (Heb. 12:17). These two men became mighty nations and naturally speaking, these two nations remain separated and diametrically opposed to each other. This conflict cannot end until the Almighty God whom established it shall have decreed that it should end. No treaty, politician or special interest group bent on world peace shall ever bring unity between these nations. In the same manner as what God has joined together no man can put asunder, so what God has separated no man can join together.

Spiritually, however, these two nations represent the children of the kingdom of darkness and the children of the kingdom of light. God separated the light and the darkness in the example of the creation. There can be, therefore, no alliance, confederacy or unity between them and so it is with the darkness of the ways of man and the light, which is the glory of God. The light reproves the darkness and reveals the work that is done in darkness. The incorruptible seed is of the light and has eternal life which time has no authority over. The light reveals the ways of man as the children of the Israel of our God walk through the valley of the shadow of death.

For those who are “of your father the Devil” the nature and ways of Adam are compatible with this evil seed. There is no warfare between the sensual and devilish wisdom of the earth and the wisdom of the one whose heart is lifted up and has said; I am God. Through this wisdom and carnal understanding the riches of this world are obtained and secure which cause the heart to be lifted up unto a false security. By this wisdom the rebellion of man is accepted as self-expression and knowledge of good and evil has given way to the acceptance of hedonism in every form. The reprobate mind of man calls that which is good, evil and that which is evil, good as the will of God enables every man to do that which is right in his own diminutive, vile and thoroughly lascivious mind. The trafficking of the mammon of unrighteousness has filled the inhabitants of this world with violence, wherein all have sinned, and the beauty of man has corrupted his understanding in the defilement of the sanctuary. God “has made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on the face of the earth, and has determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of the habitation:” (Acts 17:16). Thus Esau is at home in the fields of this world, living off the land, and is highly esteemed.

There exists, therefore, a warfare between the inner man, born from above, and the seed of Adam. Adam/Edom lusts against the Spiritual man within desiring a fruitful and successful life that should never end; this is his temporal concept of the eternal life. He adorns himself in the woven garments of his habitation, earnestly contends for the propriety of his ways and justifies his actions as being all for the glory of God. Adam, from the beginning, was deceived by the pride of his heart, seduced by the desires of his eyes and the contrived needs of the flesh thus he covered himself in the works of his hands with the substance of this world. This inherent nature completely corrupted his action and, as the saying goes, ‘the seed does not fall far from the tree’. The outward man strives for prosperity and power while being blind to the fact that he was born to die and is perishing daily.

The children of promise are accounted as sons of God, not by works of righteousness which they have done, but because of the eternal love of the Father for His children. They have not been blessed because of their actions or intention, neither has Esau been hated of God for his deeds; each, however, acts according to the seed within. Jacob, the man, was a liar, a thief and a coward who ‘supplanted’ in all he did; this is the man he was ordained to be in Adam. Jacob, the child of promise, was chosen and preserved in the salvation of Yehovah thus he could not fall short of His glory, because he is born of God (I John 3:9). He was set apart to perform the good works he was assigned in that salvation and to experience the vanity of this world and the bondage of corruption. Like every child of grace the creature groans within and testifies; “O wretched man that I am, who shall deliver me from the body of this death? I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Rms. 7:24).

God raised up ‘mighty Adam’ (Hadad of Edom) against Solomon (King of peace). This came to pass at the height of Solomon’s building of the Temple, wherein Israel was blessed with materials, labourers and advisors of many allies as God established her borders. The promise of God was made manifest for all to see for when the work was completed, the cloud of smoke descended upon the Temple as the glory of Yehovah filled the house. He gave the nation peace from all her enemies and blessed His servant with great wisdom, understanding and curiosity. The extent of his learning was commensurate to the wisdom God gave him as he set his heart to find out all things. Adam took and ate in anticipation of his obtaining the knowledge of good and evil so as to be like God; Solomon was blessed with; “Wisdom and knowledge are granted you and I will give you riches, wealth and honour, such as none of the kings have had before you, neither shall there any after you have the like” (II Chr. 1:12). Thus he gave his heart to seek out all, by wisdom, all that is done under heaven; “this sore travail has God given to the sons of man to be exercised therewith” (Ecc. 1:13).

The might of Edom was defeated as Yehovah put all the enemies of Israel under the foot of the Beloved King. The instrument that was used in the type was Joab, ‘Father Ya’, who “cut off every male in Edom”. Yet this Hadad had escaped the blade of Joab as a child and along with certain Edomites of his father’s servants he found refuge in the house of Pharaoh. The great house provided a dwelling place for the ‘strength of Adam’ giving him food rations and provisions for which he did not need to labour. He also gave Hadad the sister of the queen (Tah-penes – ‘the wife of the king’) to wed and unto them was given a son, Genubath (thief) who was raised as one of pharaoh’s sons.

Egypt is a conspicuous figure throughout the ages in the dealings of Yehovah with His people. The place was for a refuge to Abram in the time of a grievous famine but he was intimidated by the land (Gen. 12:10ff). He was so afraid that the ‘great house’ (Pharaoh) would kill him in order to obtain Sarai for his consort, even though the promise of Yehovah God was that he would be the father of many nations. The ‘friend of God’ believed God, and it was accounted for righteousness (James 2:3), but the man Abram proposed that his wife prostitute herself before Pharaoh.

This way when Pharaoh came and took her, being deceived by the lie, the life of Abram would be saved. This happened a second time when Abraham, his name being changed by God as a testimony to the Promise He had given, was traveling south from the lower border of ‘holy’ (Kedesh) Judah. As he approached the border of Egypt he found a ‘lodging place’ (Gerar) by the ‘wall’ ‘Shur’ (a city within the border of Egypt). Once again the land of ‘Mitzraim’ (the fortress of double defenses) gave the ‘father of the faithful’ such fear that he again instructed his wife, whose name had also been changed by the Messenger of Yehovah, to lie and prostitute herself so that he could live (Gen. 20:1ff). God came to the innocent victim, Abi-melech (my father rules), in a dream and when the truth was revealed Abraham, in his subterfuge, was blessed of God and delivered.

There was also an Egyptian woman, who was the maid of Sarai when she was in Egypt, who became the mother of the first born of Abram. Hagar bore Abram, Ishmael who became the antagonist of the Isaac and people of Israel even unto this day (Gen. 16:1ff). After the death of Sarah, Abraham took a wife named Keturah. She bore him a son named Midian (strife and contention) whose people were assigned the station in life as nomads. Many years later, these same people, being traders, would purchase Joseph from his brothers and delivering him from the hatred of his brothers and certain death, the sons of Abraham escorted the savior of the land into Egypt (37:28).

After the death of Abraham, there was a famine again in the land; this time God appeared unto Isaac and instructed him not to go down to Egypt saying, “sojourn in this land and I will be with you and I will bless you; for unto you and unto your seed, I will give all these countries and I will perform the oath which I swore unto Abraham your father” (26:3). Thus the blessing of the land was given in the midst of a natural catastrophe and the assistance of the ‘great house’ was forbidden. This thread is so intricately interwoven into the fabric of the tapestry of the sovereignty of God over all things. No son of Adam could imagine such things and no playwright could ever compose such a perplexing array of ebbs and tides that work harmoniously as one; who can know it?

Now Solomon was buying horses and chariots from Egypt, from the children of terror (Hittites) and from the ‘exalted’ people (Syria). Was it that this man of such great knowledge forgot that when Israel wrought great evil in the sight of Yehovah and served the gods of Baalim and Ashtaroth, that the hand of the Lord was against them and “Israel was sorely distressed?” (Jud. 10:6ff). Was his wisdom so grand that it was ignorant of the four hundred years of captivity in Egypt as Israel built the great cities of that land? And now Solomon was bringing in the treasures and imagery of the strength of the world while making alliances with the nations. He was consulting and consorting with the heathen in Jerusalem to build high places of whoredoms and spiritual idolatry, defacing and profaning the Promised Land. This was all part and parcel to the will of God as manifested in Solomon unto the purpose which God had ordained for the good of His Beloved.

“Here is wisdom. Let him that has understanding count the number of the beast for it is the number of a man and his number is six hundred sixty six” (Rev. 13:18)

The strength, passion and desires of Adam are a formidable adversary to the child of grace for there is enmity between them. The spiritual man cannot assimilate the ways of Esau into his being and the ways of the spirit are incomprehensible to the natural man. The labour of the hands of Adam is for the sustenance and prosperity of the flesh exactly as God said it would be in the garden. He told Adam that in the day that he ate of the fruit of the tree, man would surely die. Adam ate and the soul that sinned surely died being separated from God. Yet man was not dissuaded from his allotted course, which was to usher sin into the world, and when his eyes were opened to see his nakedness before God the arm of the flesh, in league with the intelligence of the mind and ambition of the heart, contested with God in his newly fashioned fig leaf aprons. God assigned Adam and his seed within him the labour of obtaining their bread, all the days of their lives, by the sweat of his brow; thus the works of man manifest the condemnation of man in all he does.

This might and strength feeds the inflated ego and pride of the heart, which finds delight in the vanity of this world, while being deceived to think he can still persuade God by activating the illusive divine spark. He boasts of his righteousness and proclaims his zeal for God as he champions the cause of the dust and rallies the people of the land, to a failed cause for the inveterate foe of the dust of the earth is the King of peace and the citizens of the Israel of our God.

The children of this world have sought after the wisdom of man in attempt to understand themselves but they seek that which they cannot find. Only those who have been born from above have the Spirit of God “that you might be filled with knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that you might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in knowledge of God; strengthened with all might according to His glorious  power, unto all patience and long-suffering with joyfulness; giving thanks unto the Father, which has made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light” (Col.1:9). They are given the wisdom which enlightens them to the true understanding of man and the worthlessness of its way. They walk not by sight nor by the strength of the arm of the flesh for they are neither deceived by the children of the marketplace nor enticed by the strange woman of the wide street.

God gave such wisdom unto Solomon who gave his “heart to seek and search out by wisdom concerning all that are done under heaven” (Ecc. 1:13). This sore travail has been given to every son of Adam but according to the nature within the conclusions are quite different. Solomon found that everything which a man does in attempt to find fortune and fame in this world was vanity of vanities while the indigenous children of the dust seek them as a thirsty man seeks water. God gave this wisdom to Solomon for the purpose of being able to rule over His people, Israel. He came to him and asked him to request whatever he wanted and when Solomon did not ask for fortune or fame, God gave both to him with the wisdom which made him the wisest man in the world. The fact that Solomon requested wisdom is the manifold testimony that God was working in him both to will and do His good pleasure.

This wisdom made him renowned throughout all the world as people from foreign lands, kings, dignitaries, special envoys and even the Queen of Sheba were dispatched to hear the Wisdom of Solomon; “and I gave my heart to know wisdom and to know madness and folly”. But this wisdom also gave him to follow after and to discover the pleasures of man thus Solomon experienced the same warfare as every one who is of God wherein the law in the members wars against the law of the mind bringing them into the captivity of the law of sin (Rms. 8:23).

It is not a sin for a man to love a woman nor was it a sin for Solomon to have many wives; but he took unto him many women of the nations whom God instructed the children of Israel that they should not take their sons or give their daughters unto. These women occupied the heart and mind of Solomon and he was given love for them and soon followed after the gods of their homeland. God gave Solomon the wisdom to know the number of man through the experiences he had in his life. He learned the vanity of this world which was painful to his soul by seeking and searching the things which make man happy in the flesh and content in their evil ways. This is the same wisdom that every child of grace has, being the fellow companions of the New Covenant, wherein God reveals the truth about the ways of man for, just like Solomon, the Spirit teaches every child the uncleanness of the ways of the flesh and the abomination of the works of man before God. Through the testimony of Solomon and their own life experiences, the children understand this vexation upon their souls.

The adversary even withstood the King of peace with the needs and desires of the flesh. “Then Jesus was led up, of the Spirit, into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil. And when He had fasted forty days and forty nights, He was afterwards hungry” (He had a ‘pinching toil’ for He was ‘famished’). The adversary addressed the subject matter through the dire conditions of the needs of Edom for indeed, forty days and forty nights without food would make the strength of Edom almost non-existent. The subject matter, however, is the Sonship of Messiah; and so in the same subtle manner as in the garden, he breaches the subject by saying “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread”. The adversary (Satan) came to the Anointed Salvation of Yehovah three times to prove Him and he was rebuked of the Lord. God works in the same way with all His children.

Thus He was tried in the flesh in all things as His children are, yet without sin. Therefore, being touched with the feelings of the infirmities of the children, He is able to bring the necessary aid to help His children in their journey.

“And God stirred up (agitated and empowered) another adversary…” (I Kings 11:23)

This adversary of Solomon’s was not only formidable but this one was also very close to home. He was not a foreign invader whose ambition was to plunder and conquer nor was this a marauding band that made their living through the destruction and misfortunes of others. This adversary (Hb. – ‘satan’) was by a ‘prince’ (Rezon) of Israel for he was a son of ‘whom God knows’ (Eli-adah). This challenge of Solomon came from his half brother, the son of David (II Sam. 5:16), who fled from the house of his master, the mighty help ruling in his station, (Hadad-ezer king of Zobah). There he gathered together a band of men after David defeated them in the ‘broad place’ (Rehob - II Sam. 8:3) and took these men to Damascus where he ruled; “and he was an adversary to Israel all the days of Solomon, with mighty evil he hated Israel and reigned over Syria” (I Kings 11:25).

This great victory by King David was a magnificent manifestation of the promise God made unto Abram when He said that He had given the land unto his seed “from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates” (Gen. 15:18). David smote Hadad-ezer, king of Zobah unto Hamath, “as he went to establish his dominion by the river Euphrates” (I Chr. 18:3); thus the word of God came to pass by the power of His will. Then David put garrisons in Syria-Damascus because the Syrians had come to the aid of the enemies of Israel. He dedicated the spoils of the victory unto Yehovah and put the Syrians to servitude because “Yehovah preserved David whithersoever he went” (6).

Now this garrison may have been a place where David assigned his son, which is but a speculation, nevertheless, Eli-adah rebelled against his master and after his death became the adversary of Solomon. So it is conceivable that this rebellion and the hatred for Solomon may be a family matter. Here was one who was properly born unto David in Jerusalem who was forced to watch as this child born of questionable ancestry to a less than honourable woman ascended to the throne of his father. The animosity of family and the bitter contention between brothers of differing mothers is seen in the contention between Ishmael and Isaac and Esau and Jacob, both which represent the epitome of the complete dichotomy between of first Adam and the second Adam, which is Anointed.

The struggles and contentions which Solomon had with this adversary represents the contradiction of sin against self. He found that no matter what he did or what was done in this world, nothing was added to the work which God had done nor could anything be removed from that which was completed. He discovered that the labours of the hand only rearranged that which already existed and there was no profit to all that was done; “I know that, whatsoever God does, it shall be forever: nothing can be put to it nor any thing taken from it and God does that men should fear before Him” (Ecc. 3:14). Thus the pride of life, whether it be from ancestry, accomplishments or righteous endeavours was revealed to be, not only of no value, but a vexation upon his soul; herein is the number of man revealed, herein is wisdom.

“And Jeroboam the son of Nebat, an Ephraimite of Zereda, Solomon’s servant, whose mother’s name was Zeruah, a widow woman, even he lifted up hand against the king” (I Kings 11:26)

The third adversary that the Lord lifted up against Solomon was a valiant man whom the king himself made the overseer over all the affair of the house of Joseph. He was of the tribe of Ephraim who, in deference to the platitudes of the King, objected to his political endeavours and personal habits. He may have viewed these both as a personal affront but they were definitely as a social embarrassment to the nation and a religious affront to the people Israel. The Promise Land was for the children of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and foreigners were not welcomed but now they were not only welcomed but dwelling around the Holy city. Rather than stay in such a prestigious position and work in his new station as advisor to the King, the fear and animosity, which the hand of Yehovah had incited within Jeroboam, caused him to flee from Solomon and leave the country. Once again, a child of Jacob fled to Egypt for protection yet in the fullness of time, when the time of Solomon’s habitation was ended, Yehovah brought His son Ephraim out of Egypt (Hos. 11:1).

This was the son of one who ‘looks and regards’ (Nebat) and Jeroboam indeed was given to carefully observe and consider the actions of the King, but how did he know? There were no twenty-four hours a day global mass media news networks keeping the people of Egypt up-to-date with world events and social changes. There no doubt was a sufficient amount of gossip mongering in the ever present rumor mills of the political courts to satisfy the itching ears. Political emissaries carried news from afar and the tongue wagging of public opinion was and still is an essential element in governmental decisions. The members of the covert espionage division of the state government undoubtedly kept tabs on all clandestine meetings and the reports of the traveling caravans were of the highest veracity. Yet none of these could have directed the course of Jeroboam or persuaded him to act, especially since he did not intend to use this self-imposed exile as the stepping stone into world politics. Adam and his children collectively have neither the inclination nor the power to cause the events of time to come to pass for they do not know the mind or ways of God. The Spirit of the eternal Sovereign, causes all things to work in perfect precision and harmony with His eternal purpose; “being predestinated according to the will of Him who works all things after the counsel of His own will” (Eph. 1:11).

Jeroboam was raised in the region of a ‘fruitful fortress’ (Ephraim Zereda). This was the area where Joshua led the children of Israel out of the wilderness after forty years of wandering and crossed the Jordan. This was a most holy place where the promise of Yehovah was manifested as the priests, bearing the Ark of the Covenant upon their shoulders, dipped their feet into the brim of the Jordan and the waters thereof “stood and rose up in a heap very far from the city of Adam beside Zaretan (Zereda – Josh. 3:16).

It was also the region where the sword of Yehovah and of Gideon moved the armies of Israel to defeat the Midianites as “the three companies blew the trumpets and Yehovah set every man’s sword against his fellow, even throughout the host” (Jud. 7:22). He grew up in a venerated area, was exceptionally gifted, being a ‘mighty man of valour’ whose father served the King until his death and his widow mother was leprous (Zeruah). Each and every part of his heritage, lineage and social exposure was absolutely necessary to the development of this man whom, chosen of the Lord, was to raise up his hand against the King.

There was a long and bitter love/hate relationship between the house of Ephraim and the land of Egypt. Ephraim, the boy, was born unto Joseph in the house of Pharaoh into a family of power and fame. He was raised as a son of Egypt and when he was reunited with Jacob and his lineage, he was promoted to the position of the first-born because of an event which happened over 60 years earlier; “now the sons of Reuben the first born of Israel (for he was the first born but forasmuch as he defiled his father’s bed, his birthright was given unto the sons of Joseph the son of Israel. The genealogy is not to be reckoned after the birthright for Judah prevailed above his brothers and of him came the chief ruler (which is Christ), but the birthright is Joseph’s)” (I Chr. 5:1f) After Joseph died and Yehovah raised up a Pharaoh who had no regard for the Israeli intrusion into Egyptian history, or the economic and social reforms under the hand of the savior of the land, Joseph. Ephraim and his brother were relocated to the ghettos of Goshen and made to suffer the whip and bondage of the task-master for 400 years.

Now Solomon had taken the daughter of Pharaoh to wife, rebuilt the wall and mounds about the city and gave her a house right in down town Judah. The rightful inheritance of the crown that Jacob gave to the sons of Joseph (Gen. 49:26) was in the hand of this up-start and God was blessing him. Added to this was the insult of Solomon placing Jeroboam in a cabinet office of being over all the house of Joseph was enough for there to be strife between these two men. The contention of the people (which is the nature of Adam) is when every man is drawn away after his own lusts and enticed. Then when lust has conceived it brings forth the manifestation of the inability of man to know, understand and measure up to the standard of the perfection of God (James 1:14).

This is where envy and strife flourish for there is enmity between that which is of the flesh and that which is from above. Every seed born from above becomes partaker of flesh and blood which cannot perceive or understand the ways of light. The wisdom of the flesh concludes even the testimony of those things which the Anointed Salvation of Yehovah both said and did as being applicable to self for the improvement of the outward man and the advancement of the station in life.

Those in favour of this doctrine teach the outward appearance and denial of the flesh can lead to the blessing from God; this is the contention of the people, whereby, all Israel sinned (the sin of Jeroboam). Instead of accepting the accolades of the King and taking his appointed place as the head of all the house of Joseph, Ephraim fled to seek protection in the land of ‘double entrenchments’. What could have impressed this young valiant man as to any alternative motives of the King? Was there something that Solomon had said that caused Jeroboam to doubt his sincerity? Surely if there existed animosity between the house of David and the house of Ephraim because of his alliances with Egypt, this man was placed in a power position where he could influence policy and effect change. Jeroboam was to be placed in a cabinet position as the head of two tribes which would have given him more clout in the government than any one tribe. The sectional confederacy of Manasseh with the Reubenites and half the tribe of Gad as the boundaries of their inheritance lay on the east side of the Jordan River coupled together with the tribe of the first-born (Ephraim) would carry significant weight in the King’s court. Yet the contrivances of men, who lay on the bed at night to devise evil plans and iniquity, are not the decreed course which Yehovah has ordained for in the morning they have not the power in their hands to perform their intents. The prophet, Ahi-jah the Shilonite, found Jeroboam in the way as he left the king and his magnanimous offer.

The emotions of Jeroboam are not indicted as he departed from the presence of the King of Peace (Solomon) but when he came to the ‘brother of Yah’ (Ahi-jah) from the ‘place of rest’ (Shiloh) there can be no question that confusion and deep concern were frantic in the heart and mind of this young man. There is no indication that Jeroboam had ever met this prophet before and even if his presence in Jerusalem was ‘noised about’ certainly he expected neither his prophecy nor his antics for as the prophet approached him, he “caught the new garment that was on him and rent it twelve ways” (I Kings 11:30).

May those who express skepticism concerning the all inclusive nature of the sovereignty of God be given to consider the plethora of minute particulars and essential details of this encounter. How was it that this young industrious man, who had just been vaulted to the precipice of greatness in the administration of the wisest and greatest king, permitted this strange man to approach him and, laying hands on him, to remove the NEW garment? This may have been given him by the king as a symbol of the authority of his new position, nevertheless this man, albeit a prophet strips the garment off of Jeroboam’s person and, without objection, tears it before his eyes. Who but the Creator of all flesh and great King over the whole of creation could control the emotions of this valiant man, preventing his defensive responses from engaging or even his voice from offering an objection? The angry wave of man was ordained to approach to a certain extent and until that boundary was reached, Jeroboam stood amazed at the antics of the prophet and helplessly impotent to alter the impending course of events.

What but the foreknowledge of the Almighty prepared each and every thread of this garment, arranged in an exact order and sized accordingly and then completed at the appropriate time for it to be called new? Whose hand controlled the heart of Jeroboam causing him not to be carrying the garment but to be wearing it? What considerations should be given to the climate conditions of that certain day? Was it unbearably hot and so humid that the adorning of a garment would be dangerous to the man’s health or were the conditions commensurate to the purpose of God for that moment? Who ordered the steps of all parties involved in this matter, both directly and indirectly, to bring Jeroboam to the specific place and the exact time where he should come in contact with the prophet of Yehovah? Let the limited feeble mind of Adam rave on in his mantra that God is not concerned with the ‘little things’!

Instead of an outpouring of emotions and a demonstration of physical abilities, Jeroboam was contained by the hand of God and his ears were opened to hear the Word of Yehovah by the mouth of His appointed spokesman. The kingdom of Israel under Solomon was to be dismantled. The majority of the people would soon reject the throne of David and secede to form a new kingdom. The minds of the majority were turned against the glory and splendour of Solomon’s labours and the wonders of his accomplishments. They were prepared to withdraw (in order to form a more perfect union!) and Jeroboam was to be their champion in the rebellion from under the tyranny of Solomon.

Tyranny? What tyranny had been enacted by Solomon? He was ruler over Israel in the zenith of her existence and there was peace in the land. “Judah and Israel were many as the sand which is by the sea in multitude, eating and making merry and Solomon reigned from the river unto the land of the Philistines and unto the border of Egypt. These brought presents and served Solomon all the days of his life” (1 Kings 4:20). He took those whom God had prevented from being utterly destroyed or driven from their indigenous land to dwell in the midst of Israel, and made all who were not of the house of Israel servants of the people. He laid upon these servants the duties of the construction and improvements in the land of Israel. He also set upon them a levy of tribute but unto the sons of Jacob he assigned no bondmen as he made them men of war and masters over the labour force; “these the chief of the officers over Solomon’s work, five hundred and fifty which bare rule over the people that wrought the work” (9:20ff).

“And when Solomon slept with his fathers and was buried in the city of David, his father, Rehoboam his son reigned in his stead” (I Kings 11:43)

The natural process of time had run the course and the time of habitation was ended for Solomon. All of the labours which he was given to perform were completed and there was nothing left for him to do. He had properly set the stage for the performance of the next act and all necessary actors, conditions and contingencies were in place. According to the promise of God to David and the traditions of the people, Rehoboam was exalted to the position of King and assumed the throne. But when Rehoboam stood up in the place of his father and went to Shechem, the people of Israel “sent and called” Jeroboam in Egypt. And it came to pass that when he heard the call, he came to Shechem. The entire house of Israel was gathered together in the place of the ‘shoulder’ or ‘back’, being an indication of rejection and obstinacy, and with the ‘contention of the people’ as their spokesman, they objected to the ascension of Rehoboam to the throne. They objected to the economic and social conditions saying; “Your father made our yoke grievous: now therefore make the grievous service of your father and his heavy yoke, which he put on us, lighter and we will serve you” (12:4).

Israel had attained world fame and recognition. They had a large and powerful armed force, which included a navy, and the wealth of all nations had been freely bestowed upon the great King and his people; but this was not sufficient to change the course which God had ordained. He put an arrogant pride in the heart of the King and the greed of avarice festered in the hearts of his cabinet ministers, leading them to give absolutely horrible economic and social counsel. He opened the ear of the son of the wisest man to live to dreadfully juvenile guidance and loosed his tongue to announce his ignorant rebellion against the majority of the people. The public opinion polls were not consulted and there was no amount of damage control that could prevent what God had ordained for the crown was now upon the head of Joseph (Gen. 49:26). Ephraim was now greater than Manasseh and king over Israel; the last was indeed the first and there was nothing Rehoboam or Judah could do about it.

“For Yehovah shall smite Israel as a reed is shaken in the water and He shall root up Israel out of this good land, which He gave to their fathers, and shall scatter them beyond the river, because they have made their groves, provoking Yehovah to anger. And He shall give Israel up because of the sin of Jeroboam, who did sin and who made Israel to sin” (I Kings 14:15).

The contention of the people once again raised up in blasphemy of the name of Yehovah. Just as at the base of the Mt. Sinai, when Moses was delayed from his communing with God and the people rose up to play, so now the golden calves were once again out of the closet and hailed as the gods of Israel. The superstitions and imaginations of the carnal mind were set at liberty as the abominations of man were made manifest. The counterfeit Temple with unqualified priests and man made feast days were as appealing to the eyes and ears of the people as they are today. No longer was the arduous journey required to go up to Jerusalem to bring the sacrifices in observance of the types and foreshadows of heavenly things. Worship was replaced by religion as the theology of man developed the business of piety.

The sin of Jeroboam became the sin of Israel upon which the wrath of God is poured out. This is the abomination that makes desolate and the nation of Israel is the sign post of distinction for all to see, first in the ten northern tribes and finally in the southern tribes. The natural house of Israel is that fig tree upon which there is no fruit and, being cursed of God, no man shall ever eat thereof again (Matt.21:19 & Mk.11:14).

“Ephraim shall receive shame and Israel shall be ashamed of his counsel” (Hos. 10:6)

Your servant in Christ,
(Elder) Chet Dirkes
August 20, 2017

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Volume 11, No. 2