“Which things are an allegory for these are the two covenants; the one from Mt. Sinai which genders to bondage, which is Hagar.”
The legalists had come from Jerusalem in Judah and, following the evangelists of the church, were teaching the need for the physical keeping of the Mosaic Law. There is no indication of any malice on the part of these individuals and there did appear to be confusion on the part of the church at Jerusalem as to how to address the situation. There was definitely an ignorance of the understanding of grace by faith as taught by the Spirit of Holiness. This teaching gave rise to a practice that appeared to have scriptural backing and therefore was sincerely followed. The teachers knew what they thought was the law given at Sinai, Messiah had taught that the Law must be kept and the true child of grace was confronted with a great dilemma.
The understanding that the law was for only Israel was well accepted and fervently taught for God had chosen this people, peculiar unto Himself. The fathers were explicitly instructed not to make any alliances with the people of the land by giving of their children or the taking of theirs because this would cause the children of Israel to follow after the gods of this world. They knew that the handwriting of ordinances was exclusively for the sons of Jacob therefore they did not engage in a practice of trying to make converts. There were provisions made for any who came in among the nation of Israel that were not of the blood line; these were called, the stranger among you. They were commanded to be circumcised as an outward demonstration of unity with the nation and any who refused were forbidden to engage in the ceremonies of the sacrifices and rituals of the law; “one law shall be to him that is home-born and unto the stranger that sojourns among you” (Ex. 12:49). These narrow restrictions and limitations along with what appeared to be introvert isolation were not observed by the children of Israel as they became encumbered with the world and manifested from generation to generation that they could not keep the types and foreshadows of the heavenly Law of God. However an arrogant Zionism festered over the centuries and developed into a doctrinal axiom; “They answered and said unto Him, Abraham is our father.” (John 8:39).
This concept of the special nature of the nation of Israel has caused many to seek to come under the Mosaic Law in attempts to become an Israelite. Many, even today, teach observances of special days (some magically converted from the former required days while others reflect the false ‘feast days’ established by King Jeroboam – I Kings 12:32), along with special dietary restrictions and monetary guidelines for financial success. These so called church doctrines, which are nothing more than a carnal renovation of the statutes found in the first five books, enslave the child of the Kingdom of God with labours and burdens as they strive to be accepted of the beautiful people of stature and power in the assembly. The establishment of the Adamic educated class of ‘believers’, beginning at Mt. Sinai, has developed into nothing short of anarchy in the minds of those whom the Spirit has been revealed unto for the ministration of condemnation cannot bring peace.
Learned pontiffs of the world, direct descendants of the Pharisees, have divided the law of Moses, this compilation of types and foreshadows, into distinct categories of ceremonial, dietary, civil and moral laws in attempt to make them more palatable to the natural man. The doctrines which accompany this fanciful dissection and shameful categorization of the pattern of heavenly things (commonly known as theology) have become irrefutable axioms of the faux assemblies and are as sacred as the gods they think to serve. Those who have been raised under these systems find immense social pressure when the Spirit within convinces them of the futility of their observance while family and friends cast a doubtful eye upon them for their radical behavior. They cannot understand how someone could abandon the tried and true teachings of the elders and fall into such apostasy; “with us both the gray-headed and very aged men, much elder than your father” (Job 15:10). Yet even more horrific are they who come in among the group from without who have these same outlandish ideas of the departure from the ‘old landmarks’.
This is the climate of the churches in the area of Galatia as the Spirit of the Most High God opened their eyes to the truth. Those who had been raised under the corrupt yet well meaning teachings of the teachers of Israel could not imagine the idea of abandoning all they had stood for their whole lives while the converts of the nations could not imagine participating in these absurd rituals. The would-be teachers had come from Jerusalem and proclaimed adherence to the law was the way unto salvation and the conflict, once again, came to light.
“And the eyes of them both were opened and they knew that they were naked and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves aprons” (Gen. 3:7).
The teachers of the law may have come forth from Jerusalem and may indeed have had noble intents but their actions were the continuing manifestation of the nature of man. Adam could not stop Eve from being beguiled of the serpent any more than he could have stopped himself from eating and when the deed was complete a testimony was set before their eyes, This was not an accusation nor were there extenuating circumstances through hearsay evidence; the testimony was open, obvious and effectual. It declared the blatant inability of Adam to hear and obey the word of God. This testimony also had a second manifestation. It showed forth man’s feeble understanding of the Law of God, his realization that something needs to be done and the corrupt conclusion of his carnal mind as to how to remedy the situation. Words were not needed for the aprons did testify against Adam and Eve. God did not have to ask them what happened and no explanation was required for there in plain view and by their own hand was the irrefutable evidence that testified to their guilt.
This testimony of man in the garden demonstrated that man has no idea of grace, mercy or forgiveness. He instinctively conducts himself in a manner of understanding that demonstrates his desire to perform some labour in order to show forth his contrition. He cannot keep the Law of God and when his inability is manifested daily in the things he does, his desire is to keep a form of the idea of the law in order to shew himself unto God.
God gave His promise of inheritance unto Abram who believed God by the Spirit which dwelt within. The promise was according to the Word of God and therefore was as much the Law of God as the handwriting of ordinances would be many years later. Abram demonstrated that he was as incapable of understanding and abiding by this promise as Adam was in the garden and the children of Israel would be at the mount. He thought to help God by keeping His Word after his own understanding. The first came in his attempt to barter with God for Eli-ezer of Damascus (God is my help). He had heard the promise of God but he could not accept the way of God therefore he thought to help God; this resulted in an open rebuke of God; “This shall not be your heart” (Gen. 15:4).
These paths appear to the eyes of man to be like unto the way of God and the mind of man rationalizes these ways as being just because the end of the matter (an heir of the house) seems right in his eyes. This s the way of man and when the children of Israel came to the base of the mount where the glory of Yehovah appeared on the mount, they were as wiling as Adam in the garden and Abram in the wilderness to hear and do the Word of God.
“And it shall be when your son asks you in time to come, saying, ‘What this’? that you shall say unto him, ‘By strength of Yehovah’s hand brought us out from Egypt, from the house of bondage:” (Ex. 13:14).
The celebration of the Passover was given unto the children of Israel to testify to the protection of the hand of Yehovah over His people. It also represented the end of the 400 years of captivity and affliction, the death of the first born of Egypt and the beginning of forty years in the wilderness. Each and every time the Passover was observed, at least two years before the tablets were written, it stood as a testimony against the house of Jacob showing their inabilities and subjugation for those many years. Any deviation from the pattern given by Moses that evening stands as a second testimony against them of the curse of God for adding to or diverting from that which He commanded. Moses was commanded to build according to the pattern without derivation, he delivered every word which God gave him without interpretation and the nation of Israel was obligated to keep all that God commanded them. Therefore at the base of the Mount, this well intentioned stiff-necked and rebellious people said, “All that Yehovah has spoken we will do” (Ex. 19:8). These words also stood to testify against them for they indeed would alter the words, amend the practices and change the meanings when they forgot Yehovah their God.
Moses called this to their attention when he recited the hand-writings once again before his death. He had shattered the tablets in their sight to show that the Law of God stood broken before they even received it and three thousand died because of their idolatry and fornication. Israel came to Aaron and fashioned a tangible representation of the god which led them out of Egypt. This they did in attempt to worship their understanding of God and find peace in the wilderness. The broken tablets remained as evidence of this abomination and the words of Moses reminded them of it. Now, in the end of his life, he again proclaimed that a man must live in every jot and tittle of the Law of God to be justified of the Law, saying, “Keep all the commandments which I command you this day” (Ex. 27:2).
The words of the law were to be placed on the back of the hand and between the eyes as a testimony against the children of Israel. See before you and in everything you do that you cannot keep the law of God after the ways and means of man is repeated and Moses told them, when they crossed over the Jordan, to “set up great stones and plaster them with plaster; and write upon them the words of the Law, when you are passed over, that you may go into the land which Yehovah God has given you, a land flowing with milk and honey, as Yehovah, God of your father’s has promised” (27:3). This monument stood as a testimony to the children of Israel both of the mercy and the severity of God.
Moses then placed the representatives of six tribes upon Mt. Gerizim (cut off) to bless the people and the representatives of the remaining six tribes upon Mt. Ebal (bald) to curse the people. ‘Cut off’ were they who by the grace of God walked by the faith of the Son of God. These were ‘joined’ unto Him, in ‘praise’ unto His name and through the ‘recompense’ they are numbered with he who was dead but lives, even the ‘son of My right hand’ (Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, Joseph and Benjamin). These are a peculiar people unto God who have been born not by the will of man but by the Spirit of God. They are not of this world, their affections are upon the things from above and they long to be delivered from the bondage of this habitation.
Those who are ‘bald’ or having their head exposed are cohabitants with the children of the truth. They are the building of this earthen vessel the troop of contentment in the ways of man and the delights of this world the dwelling in the judgment and the wrestling with the truth. (Reuben, Gad, Asher, Zebulun, Dan and Naphtali). These are the curse of the nation because they are contrary to the ways of God. They are drawn away after the desires of the flesh and they delight after the dainties and luxuries of this dwelling.
These two represent the warfare which exists in every child of grace while he is partaker of flesh and blood. It also represents the desire of the natural man to augment the word of God with his own understanding in order to satisfy his own mind and conclude he has somewhat to boast before His throne.
“Now therefore write this song for you and teach it to the children of Israel: put it in their mouths that this song may be a witness for me against the children of Israel” (Deut. 31:19).
Moses warned the children of Israel that they could not keep the Law of God. He told them that they would forget Yehovah God, make alliances with the people of the land and they would soon follow after the gods of the land. His word was as true as when God told Adam, “in the day you eat thereof you shall surely die” but the people scoffed at him. Moses set before them testimony after testimony not of their greatness nor to their faithfulness but quite the contrary. He set forth the continuing declaration and testimony to their inabilities, their stubbornness, ignorance and their apathy toward the perfect Law of God. He told them he was afraid of the hot anger of Yehovah God against their defiance and he testified against them that they would surely die (Deut. 8:19). He was shown of God that this people would forget God and follow after their own imaginations as their theology attempted to study and explain God; “for I know their imaginations which they go about, even now, before I have brought them into the land which I swear” (Deut. 31:21). Yehovah God gave Moses His word to stand as a testimony against the nation of Israel that they had failed before they even began “for I know your rebellion and your stiff-neck; behold while I am alive with you this day, you have been rebellious against Yehovah and how much more after my death?” (26).
“And the people answered and said, God forbid that we should forsake Yehovah and serve other gods” (Josh. 24:16)
Joshua had brought these people across the Jordan and into the land of the inheritance. He had subdued the land before them as the Captain of the Host of Yehovah fought for Israel. Joshua utterly destroyed the enemies of the Lord. He had divided the land by lots and given the inheritance to all the tribes yet they could not walk in the commandments and keep the Law of God. The land stood as a testimony to the Faithfulness of Yehovah God and also stood as a testimony against the people for their inabilities. They could not keep the handwriting of ordinances, they could not drive out the inhabitants of the land and they had no control over the thoughts and imaginations of their hearts and minds. As the years progressed they, in representation of the manner of the natural man, forgot God, ignored His ways and continually demonstrated their indifference to His commandments. This is the law in the members which wars against the law in the inner man.
Joshua declared that his family served Yehovah God; this is the testimony of the Salvation of Yehovah unto His children. Joshua told the people to choose which of the other pagan gods they desired to serve for it was of no consequence to him. The people declared that they would serve Yehovah God and this stood as a testimony against them; “And Joshua said unto the people, You are witnesses against yourselves that you have chosen Yehovah to serve Him, and they said, we are witnesses” (24:22). The passage of time and the events of life proved that they could not for according to their nature, they were sinful and unclean, dead in trespasses and sin.
This does not represent two different people from various walks of life; it represents that natural man in Adam and the spiritual man in Christ. The natural man cannot receive the things of the Spirit, neither can he know them, yet he boasts himself in his ability to keep the Law of God and serve Yehovah; “all these have I kept from my youth up, what do I lack” (Matt.19:20). He has great intentions as he strives for the life that he cannot have. He desires to stand before the Almighty, adorned in the works of righteousness which he has done and be accepted of the Lord. He does not comprehend the fact that the very clothes he wears, with the intention of his darkened heart, testify against him. He earnestly contends for that which he believes is true but there is no truth in him for he is deceived by the pride of his heart. He vows and pledges repeatedly that he will follow and be obedient, yet he is feeble and without strength.
The inner man, that child born from above, has the eternal love of the Father and is hewn from that great Rock. He cannot deny his heritage nor be tainted with the people of the land yet he groans within the earthen vessel for the vanity of this world and the corruption of the body of this death. He keeps the commandments of God because The Anointed One has fulfilled the Law in all righteousness. His righteousness is their righteousness and they have been adorned in fine linen, clean and white, which is the righteousness of the saints. They cannot cease from serving Yehovah God as they sing His praises in the pure language of Zion; the children of Adam cannot cease from sin for they are cursed children.
And so Paul asks the question of those who know the law; “Do you not hear the Law”? The testimony of the nature of man from the beginning is against him. The handwriting of ordinances stands as the ministration of condemnation and to keep it is to openly declare the wretchedness of the creature. This ministration of death is the particulars of the Law of God in type wherein the commandments deceive the child and slays them in demonstration of how exceedingly sinful sin actually is. This causes the child to cry out for his Father’s mercy while the law causes the son of Adam to beg for that which he has no right, nor portion nor memorial.
Every child of the King has the testimony of the finished work of the Anointed Salvation of Yehovah who; “according to divine power has given unto us all things that are unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him that has called us to glory and virtue; whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises that by these you might be partakers of divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust” (II Pt. 1:3f).
Adam is still fashioning aprons of fig leaves as a testimony against himself as he stands in complete ignorance wondering why he is not accepted of Yehovah; “not every one who says unto Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that does the will of My Father which is in heaven. Many will say unto Me in that day, Lord, Lord have we not prophesied in Your name? And in Your name cast out devils and in Your name done many wonderful works? And then I will profess unto them, I never knew you, depart from Me you that work iniquity” (Matt. 7:21f). Adam strives to be accepted of God but Jehoshua has made all of His children accepted in the Beloved; “Behold I and the children whom Yehovah has given Me for signs and wonders in Israel from Yehovah of Hosts which dwells in Mount Zion” (Is. 8:18).
“And I beseech You, Yehovah God of heaven, the great and terrible God that keeps covenant and mercy for them that love Him and observe His commandments” (Neh. 1:5).
This is the testimony of love and life for the redeemed of the Lord who have peace with God. Herein do His children love Him with all their heart, with all their mind and with all their strength. Hereby do they love their neighbours, fellows of the pasture, the brethren because He first loved them.
The allegory is the two rivers of the land of Shinar. It is the two ways, broad and narrow and the two natures of man. It is the wise child of grace and the foolish child of man; the true Jerusalem from above and the counterfeit representation of the Jerusalem which is now, Hagar and her children in bondage. It is the carnal tangible things of this present evil generation and the eternal habitation of the inner man, that spiritual man who delights after the law of God as they co-exist during the time of this habitation. Let him that has ears to hear, hear the law of grace.
Your servant in Christ,
(Elder) Chet Dirkes
February 14, 2016