“My soul is among lions; I lie among them that are set on fire, the sons of Adam, whose teeth are spears and arrows and their tongue a sharp sword.”
The shame and reproach that the Spirit of the Most High God was manifesting to David caused him to cry out for mercy. He was not the prancing prince who, based on popular opinion and endorsements, was doing a nation wide tour to drum up the support of the electorate. He was not campaigning for votes or ‘pounding the pavement’, ‘pressing the flesh and kissing babies’ in hopes of winning a pending election. He was a chosen vessel of Yehovah God, anointed by the hand of the prophet King over Israel, who was running scared and embarrassed, in fear of losing his life. He was fleeing from Saul whose jealousy and rage controlled his actions because Yehovah had sent an evil spirit upon him. David was given to act wisely when confronted by the antic disposition of the King, yet, doubting the Word of God, and seeing the results of his actions, ordained of old, which were catastrophic and horrific, he felt stained and defiled.
David’s flight to the cave of ‘justice for the people’ was, what he thought to be, a safe haven for protection and rest. However, the ramifications of his prior encounter at Nob followed him revealing that he had trespassed the Law of Moses. The assembly that had been gathered unto him were the out-scourge of society and he only had a few who were men of valour therefore he left the cave and continued to flee, though Saul was not chasing him at this time. When the grandson of Ahimelech, the priest at Nob, came and told David of the events that had transpired after he departed the ‘high place’, David was anguished and sorrowful. He naturally concluded that the things which had happened were his fault as he undoubtedly entered into the self-destructive attitude of ‘what if’ and ‘if only I had done or not done these things’. The fear of Edom (Doeg) had witnessed his meeting with Ahimelech and as a result, not only were eighty-five priests slain, but also “Nob the city of the priests, smote he with the edge of the sword, both men and women, children and sucklings and oxen and asses and sheep, with the edge of the sword” (I Sam. 22:19). The news of this slaughter of innocent people came to David as he was in the ‘watchtower of his father’ (Mizpeh of Moab) and became a memory which he could not escape his entire life. But this was only one of many memories of the experiences which God had led David into and out of as He brought this man to his anointing and the manifestation of his being King of Israel.
The theology of Adam has taught that there is a natural distinction between the good people and the wicked of this world. Those who are ‘religious’, being identified with whatever organization or assembly they desire, are the good people and those who are not affiliated are the bad. This is taught from the youth upwards as an incentive for identification and is intrigal to the ‘duty faith’ of the ways and means of the world. Good people say their prayers, attend their meetings, raise their children in religious order and perform their works of charity for god and country as they spread the love of their gods to the common man throughout the community. Many children of the Kingdom of God have been brought along this path and have been instructed in these precepts only to be shown, when it pleases the Father to reveal His truth in them, that in them, that is in their flesh, dwells no good thing.
The memories of these encounters in the theology and ways of Adam become more encumbering upon true Israel of our God as the Spirit reveals the wickedness of the bondage of this corruption in Adam and they see all their works of righteousness in the flesh as filthy rags before the beauty of the Holiness of God. Thus they are instructed by the school-master of the vanity of their works of this world which are insufficient, their intentions are corrupt and their understanding is useless for it is God who works all things according to the good pleasure of His will. David was anointed yet he needed the ingredients of life and the experiences of his weaknesses, his inability to believe and the intrinsic vile nature of man before he could properly lead the nation. The more he acted according to his nature and his reasoning the more experiences he accumulated in his memory of his ignorance and inability. The path which God had ordained for David to walk was properly stocked with the necessary up-risings and down-falls to produce the required experiences of a king and to bring him unto the anointing of the association (Hebron – II Sam. 5:3). Thus he was made complete in all that he suffered (Cp. Heb. 5).
Many will infer that David was referring to those who were chasing him when he said that he was among lions. The army of Saul and his network of spies appeared to the natural eye of David to be driving him toward a kill and therefore he heard them roaring. These also were ablaze with the zeal of the nation and the passion of man as they sought to destroy the nemesis of Saul. This indeed is the natural representation of the historical events of the time but the psalm of David is for the edification and comfort of the children of the King as they wander through this present evil generation.
David records that his ‘soul’ or his ‘life being’ was in the middle of or between roarings. The problems he was experiencing were manifested in the flesh but he was wrestling with ‘spiritual wickedness in high places’. Just as Daniel being cast into the den of lions was a physical experience yet it stands as they type of the spiritual reality of the nature of man and the sovereignty of God over all things, so is David’s dwelling or laying down in the middle of the roaring (lions). The evil intentions of the man Saul against David were driven by the evil spirit sent from God which caused this man to act according to the divine decree of Yehovah God yet that man is dead and gone over three thousand years. The type, however, stands that the little flock might learn “that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope” (Rms. 15:4).
“And He said unto me, To build it an house in the land of Shinar and it shall be established and set there upon her own base. “(Zech. 5:11)
Yehovah God has purposely built and established the types and foreshadows of His Kingdom as a testimony for His people as they travel through the wilderness of this world. He has also purposed, built and established the counterfeit representation of the truth which draws the attention of the natural eye and leads men unto their appointed destruction. This counterfeit is wide and opulent and appears to have all the natural beauty of the pure and chased woman, the glory and splendour of the holy city and the comforts and rewards of the land. These natural attributes call unto the simple mind, attract the lusts of the eyes and satiate the natural man with the luxuries of the labours of his hands. The true representation demonstrates that all things are not by might nor by strength but by the Spirit of the Most High God while the counterfeit river demonstrates ‘see now the labours of my hands’, ‘come see my zeal for the Lord’ and “soul, you have much goods laid up for many years, now take your ease, eat, drink and be merry” (Luke 12:19). The truth is manifested in two or three gathered together in the name of the Anointed Salvation of Yehovah while the lie, the way of Adam, is given manifold evidences of worth by the numbers that follow after that which is highly esteemed of man and is abomination before Yehovah (Luke 16:15).
David indeed had a madman chasing after him for many years, seeking to destroy him, but that man would soon die. The roarings, however, did not end until the time when this habitation was over for David. These roaring are also manifested in the two rivers of Shinar as one is the testimony of the Lion of the tribe of Praise unto our God while the other is the lusts and desires of the flesh. As a child of the King, the Lion of Judah has prevailed over all His enemies. His roar is that of the conquering King who rules over the kingdoms of this world and gives them unto the basest of men. This is the King of Kings and Lord over all who has spoken and it has come to pass, saying, “My counsel shall stand”. No one may stay His hand, question His authority (though the natural man does continually), accuse Him of imperfection or impropriety or resist His most perfect and Holy Will. This is the Yehovah God who has roared out of Zion and has uttered His voice from Jerusalem “and the heavens and the earth shall shake but Yehovah is the hope of His people and the strength of the children of Israel” (Joel 3:16). The natural lion/lioness, however, roars for a different reason.
The roar of the lion in nature represents many things. The one thing it does not represent is a lion on the hunt for prey. The slightest noise from a stalking lioness will alert the prey to her presence and foil any dinner plans she had, thus she moves with great stealth until the point of the strike. The roar does indicate, however, the need for the assembly of the pride, the call to the young and the satiation of the belly after the kill. It also represents the identification of territory and the show of strength.
The roaring which David is speaking of was because of his shame, defilement and reproach of the sons of Adam. He is speaking to the constant delights and desires of that outward man who is perishing as he strives, in opposition to the Spirit within, to mark his claim, satisfy his natural instincts and be numbered with the other inhabitants of the earth. Adam calls out to the kin of the dust for assembly, comradery and carnal fellowship because he was created a gregarious being. He feeds himself by the labours of his hands of the products of the fields of this earth. He cares for those after his kind as his seed continues from generation to generation and, although he spends his time in complete denial of his frailties and finite nature, yet he has been designed to be perishing daily unto the cessation of life in this existence and his return to the dust.
When the Father then manifests His Spirit within a chosen vessel of honour, the ways and intentions of the natural man are revealed and the natural instincts are understood as the warfare between the natural members and the Spirit within. As the child of grace grows in the grace and knowledge of His will, the light of His glory reveals the vileness of the corruption in Adam and the memories of the manifestations of that wretchedness are recalled. When the new heart is manifested and the presence of the Spirit understood, then the roarings of the defeated and dying natural man are perceived as being all about as “the sorrows of death compassed me and the pains of hell gat hold upon me; then I found trouble and sorrow” (Ps. 116:3). As the Spirit leads and teaches the perfect statutes and precepts of God to those born from above, the roaring is heard louder and louder as they “remember your own evil ways and your doings that were not good and you shall loathe yourselves in your own sight for your iniquities and abominations” (Ezek. 36:31).
“I lie among them that are set on fire, the sons of Adam”
In complete deference to the ‘happy in Jesus’ theology, the Sunday School catechisms of ‘O how I love Jesus’ and the ‘name it and claim it’ crowd, David reveals that his soul, that inner man who delights after the law of God, was abiding in and laying in the middle of those who were on fire. No where in the recorded script is there an indication that David was literally ‘on fire’ in a natural sense or that any of his family or associates that were with him were ablaze as they fled from Saul through the wilderness of southern Israel. The fire spoken of is not of a natural origin and it cannot be extinguished or contained by conventional means. David is one of those whom the Lord God manifested and left for our consolation to be in the furnace of affliction (Is. 48:10).
Every child of grace is made aware of the existence of the two natures. The Adamic nature is sold under the inability to ‘hit the mark’ of the perfect and just demands of God while the spiritual man is incapable of any corruption or defilement. They are also made acutely aware of the fact that, although the outward man has a limitation placed upon the time of his habitation, yet he is also perishing daily. The effects of time and nature are experienced each day as the earthen vessel marches toward the time when it shall be put off and return to the dust from whence it was formed. The intellect, emotions and very being of Adam is also following the course of his nature “for all flesh is grass and the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withers and the flower thereof falls away” (I Pt. 1:24). And so as the incorruptible seed dwells, from year to year, in the booths of these tabernacles (Zech. 14:18), Yehovah God stands as the Refiner’s fire which is steadily consuming the wood, hay and stubble of mans works and his being.
This fire is not a raging conflagration that engulfs the fuel source within a short period of time. It is a slow burning fire of sufficient intensity and magnitude to consume the stubble of the house of Esau. The duration is commensurate to the time of the habitation which has been afore ordained by God before the foundation of the world. It proceeds from the house of praise (Judah) unto Yehovah God and the house of the next son (Joseph). This is to indicate that this refinement is not of the will of man or of his own doing nor is it restricted to certain Zionistic ones of pure pedigree. Adam does not know this flame for it is the work of God and since none can stay His Almighty hand or oppose His perfect will, so man does not ignite the fire and has no authority over the flame as he has been made the recipient of this grace from God; “and they shall kindle in them and devour them and there shall no be any remaining of the house of Esau, for Yehovah has spoken” (Ob. 18).
The Refiner’s fire and fuller’s soap is for the refining and the purifying of the silver and the purifying of the sons joined (Levi) unto Him (Mal. 3:3). It is the trying of every work of man to demonstrate and prove the worth of the actions and intention. Man is carnal and therefore his reasoning is flawed. His works are of mind and passions of this earth for his benefit and the perpetuity of his name. They are wood, hay and stubble and they are “made manifest, for the day shall declare it , because it shall be revealed by fire and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is” (I Cor. 3:13).
David was not referring to the men who were following the orders and directives of the King in tracking down this upstart renegade nor was he referring directly to Saul. He was speaking of the contradiction of the vanity of the flesh and it’s enmity against God . The labours which God has assigned unto the sons of Adam are for their discipline in the duties He purposed. He gave David to be a valiant man who fought many battles but He also sent a messenger from Satan to withstand him, lest he think more highly of himself than he ought. The accomplishments of the flesh and the accolades of the fellow inhabitants of this world are in accord with those things which are seen and heard; therefore they are temporal and fade away like the grass. There is no faith in these endeavours and without faith it is impossible to please the Lord God Omnipotent.
Yet according to His great love, wherewith He has loved His people with an eternal love, He has established this fire that no flesh should glory in His sight. There reveals His love for His children whom He died for and the purity of His glory, which is as clear as crystal (Rev. 22:1). No man can stand and plead the works of his hands for from the beginning, the apron of fig leaves was not sufficient to satisfy the righteousness of God and neither shall any works of the sons of Adam please God.
“And I saw as the colour of amber as the appearance of fire round about within it, from the appearance of His loins even upward of His loins even downward, I saw as it were the appearance of fire and it had brightness round about” (Ezek. 1:27).
As many times as Yehovah God revealed Himself to His servants, there was the presence of the appearance of fire. He is the source of the refining fire and as John saw, he is one who appears as if He was brandished in the furnace. The fire is for His Beloved as they walk this earth as the outer man is consumed and inner man renewed. His eyes are as a flame of fire for He has purposed, ignited and caused the fire to burn according to the eternal foreknowledge of His will. His feet like unto fine brass as if they had been burned in a furnace because He has endured the flame of His fire(Rev. 1:14). He humbled Himself and took on the form of a servant and was made in the likeness of sinful man. He experienced the contradiction of sin against Himself and when His work was tried in the furnace, there was no wood, hay or stubble for He had fulfilled the law in all righteousness and finished the work set before Him. He did what Adam could never do because, although He partook of the same flesh and blood as Adam, yet He was without sin. He could not fail to ‘hit the mark’ for God cannot deny Himself; “look unto the Rock from whence you are hewn” (Is. 51:1).
John saw the risen Lord as He stood with all the evidence of His accomplishments. He had shed His precious blood for the sin of His people. This was finished from the beginning but manifested in the fullness of time in the end of the world when He entered once into the sanctuary not made with hands and put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself (Heb. 9:26). Yet from the beginning, when the Father saw the travail of His soul, He was well pleased for He took the cup of His fury and drank well, therefore His wrath was appeased. He has taken away the sin of His people because He looked and saw no intercessor and no helper who could accomplish this for them, therefore He brought salvation unto Himself by His right hand and His Holy arm (Is. 63:5). He revealed His worth, His splendour and His glory as He was Refiner, the fire and the refined. His work is pure, righteous and true and so is the work that His children have been created unto. He is the Lion of the tribe of Praise unto our God and He alone is worthy thus His children are living precious stones (Rev. 21:19) whose faith, “being more precious than gold that perishes, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto the praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ” (I Pt. 1:7).
The fires of nature leave desolation in their wake as they consume all that can be burnt. The children of grace have a kingdom that is not of this world, a sanctuary not made with hands, an eternal tabernacle not made with hands and a city whose builder and maker is God. These have become partakers of flesh and blood and have been made subject to the vanity of this world. This world, however, and all that is therein “shall pass away with a great noise and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up” (II Pt. 3:10). The harvest of this world, which is the sons of Adam, is well dry because Yehovah God has sent forth a famine in the land, “not a famine of bread nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the Word of Yehovah” (Amos 8:11). This famine belongs only to the children of the dust who cannot hear the Word of God for they are spiritually discerned (I Cor. 2:14). The sheep of the pastures of God, however, hear His voice and follow Him for He is the Word of God; another’s voice they cannot hear. The natural man cannot receive the things of the Spirit, his mind is full of the things of this world and his heart is drawn away after the lusts and desires of this world. The Husbandman has come to that vine and found wild grapes; therefore He has torn down the hedges and laid it waste unto destruction (Is. 5:6). He has come to that fig tree to find fruit and found none therefore He has cursed it that there never be found any fruit therein (Matt. 21:19). He came unto His own people and found no faith in the earth for all men have not faith. He has sent forth a numerous cloud of witnesses in the Law and the prophets and in these last days by the remnant according to grace and yet there is no repentance or confession of sin; therefore you are without excuse oh man that judges. Thus from the beginning God decreed His fire to go forth upon the Garden of Eden before and leave desolation behind (Joel2:3) as there shall none remain of the sons of Esau / Edom / Adam.
“And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defiles, neither works abomination nor makes a lie; but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of life” (Rev. 21:27).
David was given to experience the groanings of the Spirit within, the roaring of Adam without and the Refiner’s fire over all that must be consumed. He cried unto the ‘preeminent perpetual overseer’ confessing his frailty and pleading for mercy. His address was to the Lord God Omnipotent for there is none other to help. He understood the number of man and the vanity of this existence yet he was comforted in the sovereign immutable rule of the Ancient of Days. Though the spirit of man lusts unto envy (Jms. 4:5) and is constantly ‘bent down’ and ‘encamped’ (spears) in attempt to ‘divide’ (arrows) the power of God and the authority of the Spirit by ‘gnashing’ (teeth) with ‘slanders’ and ‘accusations’ (tongue) against the truth yet the power, majesty and glory of God remains absolute. Though Adam is made to be ‘alert unto destruction’ (sharp sword) yet the destruction is his and not the eternal incorruptible seed which is born “not of blood, nor by the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God” (John 1:13).
The accuser of the brethren has been cast out and there is therefore now no condemnation against them that are in Christ Jesus. The redeemed of Yehovah are seated together with Him in the heavenlies and, though it does not yet appear to be so, yet they are the sons of God, heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ. All who were written in the book of life before the foundation of the world have had their graves opened and are raised up together in Him (Eph. 2:6). The time has come and now is when the dead in the Anointing have heard His voice and come forth, every man in his order. Then the conflict is manifested and the trials revealed. Then is the roaring heard, the flames felt and the groaning of the Spirit understood.
“For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, works for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory” (II Cor. 4:17).
Your servant in Christ,
(Elder Chet Dirkes
June 21, 2015