Have you the eyes to see and ears to hear?
One woman, standing on the roadside, somewhere near a shopping complex which was adjacent to a primary school, was scribbling something on a piece of paper. A taxi came and she discarded the paper and boarded. Later three people, two men and a lady—not acquaintances – were standing on the same spot. Taxis took long to show up and a conversation started. One man noticed the paper with the scribble. “What was this person writing?” he asked the other gentleman. “The person must have been tallying the votes so far announced for this constituency. Its polling day and that’s what everyone is doing with their paper and pencils!” assuredly the gentleman spoke. The lady who had all the while only been intermittently flicking glances at the talkative men decided to chip in when she had seen what was on the paper. “There is a primary school here. This must have been an arithmetic exercise, and perhaps a pupil was trying to add up the numbers” she tried to rationalize. “No. It cannot be” began the gentleman when the debate was dismissed by the sounding of the taxi horn. The passengers boarded as the writer of the note, among other passengers, disembarked from the taxi. She had just returned from a grocery store where she had gone to buy some ingredients for making a cake for the birthday party of her son. The debate party continued arguing about her little budget.
We would like to use this simple story to illustrate what can characterise events that occur as a result of the human mind. As we go about our day to day activities, we perform activities – writing, greeting people, eating, etc. These physical activities are only a small part of the large story that occurs in our minds. When the three people in our story talked, speculated, and rationalised, their interpretation of the writing on the paper was all based on imagination. What they conjectured was very far from what the writer had in mind. They saw the written characters but didn’t see the details, concealed in the mind of the writer. Without that mind they were left to only speculate about where the paper was found, and what activities surrounded the vicinity of the place.
It is important to know that although the writing on the paper was nearby a school, it didn’t come from the school. And although the paper was nearby a shopping complex, and her budget had something to do with shopping, it still had nothing to do with any shop there. Thus, to seek the interpretation of the ‘mysterious’ writing by investigating places where it didn’t come from will only leave us with plausible explanations but which are only figments of imagination.
The writing on the paper came from a mind and until that mind reveals the unseen details, no one will correctly understand its meaning. Now think of it: the woman in our story had no intention of concealing the details; It was just something she did without any intention of mystifying it. Now, if it is hard to decipher a writing whose author had no intentions of hiding the meaning, how much more difficult will it be to decipher a writing whose meaning has been purposely encrypted? Well, this happens to be the case with the Word of God: when the disciples asked him why He spoke to the people in parables, he answered: “Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given… Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand. And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias, which saith, By hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and shall not perceive” (Mat.13:11,13).
There is only ONE WAY for us to grasp the Word of Christ and that is through receiving His mind – “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus” (Phi.2:5). The failure to perceive the Mind of God is what leads to differences in opinions about God’s Word. One person reads the book of Genesis and sees Adam and Eve eating an apple. Another person perceives an act which polluted human blood and hence brought about the need for the saviour of the world to be born by bypassing birth through sexual intercourse and in this way have pure blood! These two views are diametrically opposed but yet are based on the same Genesis story. This is somewhat similar to the way we can view a computer system.
An Analogy of Computer Code
A computer uses long series of codes for all the functions it performs. Computer code is very detailed and too delicate to change anyhow. If you have not been trained in the science of writing computer instructions, computer code will be utter nonsense to your sight. But play with one dot, comma, or a word, and the computer will malfunction. This is one reason why computer programmers don’t put computer code in plain sight. It is hidden and made accessible only for trained minds to access. When a trained mind looks at the code, he sees a beautiful interconnection of logic.
As with a computer system so it is with the Word. An unbeliever looks at it and says “Hogwash!” The nominal Christian gets excited at its surface simple truth. The believer looks and perceives what everyone else doesn’t see – a coherent story of redemption which runs from Genesis to Revelation! Notice that there is the Word and also the Word, so to speak. One dimension of the Word is open and the other concealed. One consists of letters and the other is that Spirit of Life.
Letters are subject to handling by any person or machine. The letters can be re-produced by a printer. Their arrangement of spellings and grammar can be revised and updated by scholars and subject to man’s interpretation. This ‘open Word’ in letter form can be held in hand by a crook, a prostitute or thief. It will comfortably lie in the drawer of a bed on which a hypocrite is committing adultery. The concealed Word is not so. The concealed Word manifests by revelation. It is so very far from the grasp of a carnal mind. When it manifests it convicts the heart of a sinner and it brings joy to the heart of a believer. This is the Word that brings salvation. It gives life to the hearer. It is the Spoken Word of Life.
Now, it is important to note that when a carnal eye looks at the Spoken (revealed) Word, it seems as though it is an addition to the written Word. But this is not so to the spiritual eye. What the spiritual eye sees is the life proceeding from the seed of the Word.
Watching what they have not seen
One day I was engaged in a discussion about the Serpent Seed doctrine with three Jehovah Witnesses. Two were elders. Upon hearing what I believed about the Original Sin that occurred in Eden one elder exclaimed: “That cant be! That interpretation is an addition to the Scripture! If the Original Sin involved adultery the Scripture would have plainly recorded the event”.“Very well” I said. “In chapter 6 of the book, PAY ATTENTION TO DANIEL’S PROPHECY, you (Jehovah Witnesses) have explained that the immense tree in Nebuchadnezzar’s dream pertained to God’s Kingdom on earth which was represented in the nation of Israel. This is contrary to what Daniel said about the meaning of the dream. Daniel plainly said that the tree referred to Nebuchadnezzar’s rulership. But on page 87 of your book, you have explained that ‘Like the immense tree of his dream, Nebuchadnezzar had ‘grown great and become strong’ as the head of a world power. But ‘rulership to the extremity of the earth,’ involving the whole kingdom of mankind, is represented by the great tree. It therefore symbolizes Jehovah’s universal sovereignty.’ The book goes further to explain that we thus have to look to the point in time when Israel was cut down as a tree and the year stated is 607BC.”At that point I brought out the book, and began to open its pages. The elder looked to his two other colleagues and they whispered some words I didn’t hear. Having spotted the page I was looking for I continued speaking: “Here the book goes further to explain that the seven times that passed over the tree equals 7 years. And you took each year to consist of 360 ‘prophetic days.’ Then 7 has been multiplied with 360 to give a result of 2, 520 years. Thus counting 2,520 years from 607BC made you arrive at 1914. In this year, the book states: ‘the appointed times of the nations’ were fulfilled, and God gave rulership to…Jesus Christ’” (p.97). After elaborating on these facts – and I was thankful for their gentleness and quietness which gave me enough time to explain – I posed the question: “First: Daniel plainly interpreted the dream and it is in plain black and white that the tree referred to Nebuchadnezzar, but where did you get the idea that it actually referred to the nation of Israel? Second: about 1914 and your calculations, would they not have been plainly stated in the Scripture? Between you and I, who really is adding words to Scripture?” The three men smiled, and one said, “Well, Mr. Phiri, God’s Word is progressively revealed.” “And part of that ‘progressive revelation’” I said to the elder, “is the truth of the Serpent Seed doctrine.” What happened next was unexpected. The elder dismissed the meeting by saying, “We are really encouraged at how you have read our literature. We will go and study and inquire about some matters you have raised and then we will be back next time. Besides, its now lunch-time and we have to respect that.”
There they went – watchmen sitting on watchtowers, watching and spreading news about what they have neither seen nor heard! Their faces and change of tempo of conversation let me know that they had never heard the Original Sin expounded in the way they heard it in this discussion. However, one could easily see that they were ‘souls in prison’. They had to give allegiance to the beliefs and tenets of their organisation.
Adding to the Word
The Jehovah Witnesses I talked with did not understand what constitutes “adding” to the Scripture. Like many Christians they read scriptures like Deuteronomy 4:2 and Revelation 22:19, and then shun to hear anything that they can’t see in black and white in scriptures.
So, what do these scriptures mean? What does “adding” or “subtracting” from the Scripture really constitute? We need to realize that many religious people who heard brother Branham teach about such controversial topics as the Serpent Seed doctrine believed that he was adding to the Scripture because they could not see his teaching conspicuously stated in the Bible. This is not new. This attitude in people has always repeated itself whenever God raises certain people to manifest the life of the Word. Did not the religious theologians rise against Jesus supposing that he was “adding” or “subtracting” from the teachings of Moses? Dear friends, to this day Jewish rabbis believe that Jesus was a false prophet who indoctrinated people with teachings that were contrary to Scripture. It has been said that “Jesus [was] the most influential, and consequently the most damaging of all false messiahs.” Here is what one rabbi – Shraga Simmons – has written:
The Messiah will lead the Jewish people to full Torah observance. The Torah states that all mitzvot remain binding forever, and anyone coming to change the Torah is immediately identified as a false prophet (Deut. 13:1-4). Throughout the Christian “New Testament,” Jesus contradicts the Torah and states that its commandments are no longer applicable. For example, John 9:14 records that Jesus made a paste in violation of Shabbat, which caused the Pharisees to say (verse 16), “He does not observe Shabbat!” (find entire article on www.aish.com).
Dear friends, what these Pharisees looked at were forms of words Jesus used in teaching (take note of this word – ‘forms’; It is important in our message). They compared those words with what they read in the Torah and concluded that this man broke the Sabbath and other traditions of the Law. What they didn’t see is the Life of the Words he spoke. Had they perceived that, they would have seen that the life in Moses’ words was the same as that in Jesus words. Unfortunately they were so confident in what they preconceived and went ahead to crucify Jesus, believing that He was a false prophet. Believe it or not, if you lived in those days and what you believed was determined by what religious scholars and the mainstream media reported about Jesus, you would not have accepted His teachings.
Now, Deuteronomy 4:2 says, “Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you” What did this mean? Did it mean that the Israelites were not suppose to have other additional books beyond the Torah of Moses? If no, how were they suppose to distinguish what was an addition from what was to constitute the canon? Surely, without eyes and ears to discern the life of God’s Word one would be left to decide using their own discretion.
First it is important to know that in the beginning God decreed that every seed was to reproduce according to its kind. When a seed is planted, there is a life in it that has to manifest. If it is a seed of a mango tree, the ONLY life that is in that seed is that of mango. It is a ONE WHOLE LIFE. This fact remains the same even though that mango life will manifest in different stages and in various forms.
The illusion of “Form”
At an earlier point, out of the planted mango seed comes a white-looking shoot. Then later, a long tall stem. Afterwards its succulent leaves, then flowers, and then a mango fruit. All forms are diverse one from another but yet have ONLY ONE LIFE flowing through them!
Now, if we had a strange-visitor from Mars, and we were to show him the seed of mango in one place and the tree of mango in another place, and told him “this is that!” If the man has enough theology from Mars you will argue with him till sunset but to no avail. Well, had it not been that we human beings have been on Earth and have observed what happens to a mango seed we would all share the skepticism of the stranger. But thankfully we know that a fruit can only be an addition to the mango life if it was discovered that it was actually an orange we found on the mango tree. “Addition” is not at the level of physical form but at the level of life behind form. Form can be so illusory and inconsistent to human sight – at one time it is a spherical seed, out of that comes an elongated structure called stem, and then the oval structures called leaves and then the fruit. Folly is trying to seek for truth through searching forms instead of life. It is important to know that whilst form is illusory and inconsistent, LIFE IS CONSISTENT and you really cannot add to it without producing DEATH.
Life identifies Life
It takes the LIFE OF THE WORD to be in a heart of a person for them to discern a distortion of Truth —addition or subtraction “form” of the Word. It takes life to identify death just as it takes life to identify life. A dead thing can’t identify a living thing and neither can it identify another dead thing. Likewise, “the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned”(1 Cor.2:14).
It takes a spiritual mind to discern that teaching that the Original Sin was the eating of a literal fruit is actually what constitutes adding to the Word because this thought fails to run consistently throughout the Scripture. With that view you will have one kind of Tree of Life that is natural and grows from the earth, being nourished by physical soil, and another Tree of Life in Revelation 2:7 which is spiritual, being situated in Paradise. With that view you will have sin coming into the world as a result of what someone put into his stomach, and ofcourse later defecated – “Do not ye yet understand, that whatsoever entereth in at the mouth goeth into the belly, and is cast out into the draught? But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man. For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies” (Matt.15:17-19). However, when ones eyes get opened to see beyond the ‘Graphical Interface’ of words and letters of Scripture, he or she will see an awesome detailed coherent code that tells ONE STORY OF REDEMPTION. Like a computer system whose graphical user interface may seem to have so many features of icons, pictures, sounds, etc., its computer code is only made up of ONE THING – electric current, which can be in a state of ON or OFF. This characteristic enables a computer to ‘manifest’ different forms of objects. Similarly when a spiritual person looks into the code-book of God’s Word he sees the one story of redemption that begins in Genesis when THE WAY OF THE TREE OF LIFE was closed when man sinned and ends in Revelation 22 with the way being opened and the leaves of the TREE provided for the healing of the nations, from ‘ills’ that came as a result of shunning God’s ordained way of life – THE WAY OF THE TREE OF LIFE, which involved living and walking in God’s perfect will.
In the light of what we have said, one thing is certain: when John heard the Seven Thunders utter those words he was forbidden to write, we surely can not find their utterances in Scripture because THEY WERE NOT WRITTEN THERE! However, when they shall speak, IT WONT BE AN ADDITION TO THE LIFE OF GOD’S WORD. Those with ears to hear will perceive the consistency of the life of God in their messages. The question is, Have you ears to hear? CONTINUED & CONCLUDED IN PART VI.
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