WHY I WORSHIP THE BIBLE
God's Word as a Functional Substitute for God


I do not worship my particular copy of the Scriptures. (I have more than one copy of the Bible. I do not worship any one of those copies.) Paper and ink are not the object of my worship.

The word "Scripture" (Greek: γραφη) means "something written" (Latin scrīptūra, writing). What is written is the Word of God.

I worship the Word of God.

God gave to humanity His Word in written form.

Jesus is the Word of God incarnate (from the Latin, caro, flesh); the Bible is the Word of God inscriptured (Latin scrīptūra, writing).
I worship the Word of God.
I worship the incarnate Word; I worship the inscriptured Word.

I do not have direct sensory access to the flesh of the incarnate Word.
I do not have direct sensory access to the "autographa" of the inscriptured Word.

The "powers that be" conspired to put the incarnate Word to death.
Governments have always attempted to erase all copies of the inscriptured Word.

Nevertheless, both the incarnate Word and the inscriptured Word are still living.

I worship the Word of God.

This link shows how the New Testament Scriptures speak of the Old Testament Scriptures.

Princeton Theologian B.B. Warfield observes that the Scriptures treat the Scriptures "as if they were God":

Galatians. 3:8, "The Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all the nations be blessed" (Gen. xii. 1-3);

Romans 9:17, "The Scripture saith unto Pharaoh, Even for this same purpose have I raised thee up" (Ex. ix. 16).

It was not, however, the Scripture (which did not exist at the time) that, foreseeing God's purposes of grace in the future, spoke these precious words to Abraham, but God Himself in His own person: it was not the not-yet-existent Scripture that made this announcement to Pharaoh, but God Himself through the mouth of His prophet Moses.

In other passages, God is spoken of as if He were the Scriptures:

Matthew 19:4, 5, "And he answered and said, Have ye not read that He which made them from the beginning made them male and female, and said, For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife, and the twain shall become one flesh?" (Gen. ii. 24);

Hebrews 3:7, "Wherefore, even as the Holy Ghost saith, To-day if ye shall hear his voice," etc. (Ps. xcv. 7);

Acts 4:24, 25, "Thou art God, who by the mouth of thy servant David hast said, Why do the heathen rage and the people imagine vain things" (Ps. ii. 1);

Acts 13:34, 35, "He that raised him up from the dead, now no more to return to corruption, . . . hath spoken in this wise, I will give you the holy and sure blessings of David" (Isa. lv. 3); "because He saith also in another [Psalm], Thou wilt not give thy holy one to see corruption" (Ps. xvi. 10);

Hebrews 1:6, "And when He again bringeth in the first born into the world, He saith, And let all the angels of God worship him" (Deut. xxxii. 43); "and of the angels He saith, Who maketh his angels wings, and his ministers a flame of fire" (Ps. civ. 4); "but of the Son, He saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever," etc., (Ps. xlv. 7) and, "Thou, Lord, in the beginning," etc. (Ps. cii. 26).

It is not God, however, in whose mouth these sayings are placed in the text of the Old Testament: they are the words of others, recorded in the text of Scripture as spoken to or of God.


We must learn how to worship God's Word.


Many Christians downplay the Scriptures. They say they would rather have a "relationship" with Jesus. They only want to worship "the name of Jesus."

But the Scripture says that God "has magnified Thy Word above all Thy Name" (Psalm 138:2).

It turns out they don't like the Bible because it has lots of commands, while their own version of Jesus is much nicer.

God's "Name" is in a sense a Word for God. A divine Word. An authoritative Word.

God as Covenant Lord

There are many people who say they believe in "God," but if by "God" they mean
     a Creator - the One Who brought them into being - and
     a Sustainer - the One Who keeps their heart keep beating - and
     a Redeemer - the One Who sacrificed His own Son to make us holy -
then they show an absolutely remarkable lack of interest in this Being.
"Ignorance is bliss," they say, and their relationship to God is one of uninterrupted bliss.
They do not know what this God desires, nor do they care to find out. If they know or suspect what their Creator created them to do, they would rather watch Sex and the City.

In our day, a knowledge of God's Law for His creatures is not the most sought-after commodity.

John Frame's important book on The Doctrine of the Knowledge of God gives many valuable insights into the concept of God as Covenant Lord. In a section on "The Biblical Concept of Lordship" Frame notes that

Divine transcendence in Scripture seems to center on the concepts of control and authority.

Control is evident in that the covenant is brought about by God's sovereign power. God brings His covenant servants into existence (Isaiah 41:4;[2] 43:10-13;[3] 44:6;[4] 48:12[5]) and exercises total control over them (Exodus 3:8,14[6] [cf. Exodus 33:18;[7] 34:6[8]]).

As Lord, He sovereignly delivers them[9] from bondage and directs the whole natural environment (cf. the plagues in Egypt) to accomplish His purposes for them.

Authority is God's right to be obeyed, and since God has both control and authority, He embodies both might and right. Over and over, the covenant Lord stresses how His servants must obey His commands (Exodus 3:13-18;[10] 20:2;[11] Leviticus 18:2-5,30;[12] 19:37;[13] Deuteronomy 6:4-9.[14])

To say that God's authority is absolute means that His commands may not be questioned (Job 40:11-14;[15] Romans 4:18-20;[16] 9:20;[17] Hebrews 11:4,7,8,17[18]), that divine authority transcends all other loyalties (Exodus 20:3;[19] Deuteronomy 6:4-9;[20] Matthew 8:19-22;[21] 10:34-38;[22] Philippians 3:8[23]) and that this authority extends to all areas of human life (Exodus; Leviticus; Numbers; Deuteronomy; Romans 14:23;[24] 1 Corinthians 10:31;[25] 2 Corinthians 10:5;[26] Colossians 3:17,23[27]).

God's Word as Object of Worship

Later in his book, Frame discusses "The Covenant Law." He rightly notes that "The present section is somewhat redundant because we have already discussed the knowledge of God's authority, and there is no important difference between knowing God's authority and knowing God's Law."

This is a critical statement. Frame is saying we cannot know God without knowing Him as Law, and thus we cannot know God without knowing His Law. If this is the case, God's Law deserves the same devotion that is due to God Himself. Is it really the case that there is no important difference between knowing God's authority and knowing God's Law? Frame continues:

"Indeed, in an important sense, the Word of God (and hence the Law, a form of the Word) is divine. God's speech has divine attributes

  • Genesis 18:14 Is any thing too hard for the LORD? At the time appointed I will return unto Thee, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son.
  • Psalm 19:7-9 The Law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: the Testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple. {8} The Statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: the Commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes. {9} The Fear of the LORD is clean, enduring for ever: the Judgments of the LORD are true and righteous altogether.
  • Psalm 119:7 I will praise Thee with uprightness of heart, when I shall have learned Thy righteous Judgments.
  • Psalm 119:86 All Thy Commandments are faithful:
  • Psalm 119:89 For ever, O LORD, Thy Word is settled in heaven.
  • Psalm 119:129 Thy Testimonies are wonderful: therefore doth my soul keep them.
  • Psalm 119:137 Righteous art Thou, O LORD, and upright are Thy Judgments.
  • Psalm 119:140 Thy Word is very pure: therefore thy servant loveth it.
  • Psalm 119:142 Thy righteousness is an everlasting righteousness, and Thy Law is the Truth.
  • Psalm 119:160 Thy Word is true from the beginning: and every one of thy righteous Judgments endureth for ever.
  • Isaiah 55:11 So shall My Word be that goeth forth out of My Mouth: it shall not return unto Me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.
  • Luke 1:37 For with God nothing shall be impossible.
  • John 17:17 Sanctify them through Thy Truth: Thy Word is Truth.

functions as an object of worship

  • Psalm 9:2 I will be glad and rejoice in Thee: I will sing praise to Thy Name, O Thou most High.
  • Psalm 34:3 O magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt His Name together.
  • Psalm 56:4 In God I will praise His Word, in God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me.
  • Psalm 56:10 In God will I praise His Word: in the LORD will I praise His Word.
  • Psalm 68:4 Sing unto God, sing praises to His Name: extol him that rideth upon the heavens by His Name JAH, and rejoice before Him.
  • Psalm 119:120 My flesh trembleth for fear of Thee; and I am afraid of Thy Judgments.
  • Psalm 119:161-162 SCHIN. Princes have persecuted me without a cause: but my heart standeth in awe of Thy Word. {162} I rejoice at Thy Word, as one that findeth great spoil.
  • Psalm 138:2 I will worship toward Thy holy temple, and praise Thy Name for Thy lovingkindness and for Thy Truth: for Thou hast magnified Thy Word above all Thy Name.
  • Isaiah 66:5 Hear the Word of the LORD, ye that tremble at His Word; Your brethren that hated you, that cast you out for My Name's sake, said, Let the LORD be glorified: but He shall appear to your joy, and they shall be ashamed.

and is called divine

  • John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
  • Romans 10:6-8 But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above:) {7} Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.) {8} But what saith it? The Word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the Word of faith, which we preach;
  • Deuteronomy 30:11-14 For this Commandment which I command thee this day, it is not hidden from thee, neither is it far off. {12} It is not in heaven, that thou shouldest say, Who shall go up for us to heaven, and bring it unto us, that we may hear it, and do it? {13} Neither is it beyond the sea, that thou shouldest say, Who shall go over the sea for us, and bring it unto us, that we may hear it, and do it? {14} But the word is very nigh unto thee, in thy mouth, and in thy heart, that thou mayest do it.

Thus we cannot know God without knowing His Word, and we cannot know the Word without knowing God.

There has been some discussion recently of the fact that torah in the Old Testament is often, at least, better translated "instruction" than "law." Some take this fact as justification for relaxing the traditional emphasis in Reformed theology on the normativity of God's commands, the requirement of absolute obedience. In reply we may note the following. (1) Whatever we may say about torah, we must also do justice to that great redundant collection of other "norm-terms" in Scripture: "statutes," "commandments," "testimonies," and so on (see, e.g., Ps. 119). (2) Deuteronomy 4:1-14,[28] 6:1-9,[29] 8:1-9,[30] and many other passages make it clear that God's Word (even understood as "instruction") demands absolute obedience. In the New Testament, see Matthew 4:4[31] John 14:15,21,[32] Romans 4:16-25,[33] I Corinthians 14:37f.,[34] and elsewhere.

God's Word is normative instruction.

The verses cited by Frame are critical, and like so many verses which are critical to a proper understanding of the Bible, don't seem to get all the "pulpit-play" they should. You will want to meditate on each of them to allow the Spirit to engraft them to your heart.

Note also that the fact that "Torah" can be translated "instruction" does not dilute the binding authority of that Word. In fact, as Rushdoony has shown, the word "Torah" can also be translated "way" or "path" which conveys the concept of "guide" as does "instruction." But the fact that the early church called themselves followers of "the Way" (Acts 9:2;[35] 19:9,23;[36] 22:4;[37] 24:14,22[38]) even as Jesus called Himself "the Way" (John 14:6[39]) brings us back to torah. Thus, living as we do in the age of the completed canon of Scripture, we may say that the Torah is Jesus. Frame concludes:

To know God's authority, control, and presence, involves knowledge of His Law, His world, and ourselves. This triad deserves some analysis. To know God is to know His Law. God Himself necessarily acts as Law to all being other than Himself. To be Lord is to be the Giver and Ultimate Enforcer of Ultimate Law. Thus Scripture speaks of God's nature as Word, as Name, as Light. To obey the Law is to obey God Himself. God's Law, therefore, is divine -- divine in authority, power, eternality, and ultimacy. We cannot know God without knowing Him as Law. God's Law, then, is God Himself.

When man attempts to be as God (Gen. 3:5[40]) he thereby attempts to be as Law. But humanistic law is tyranny. Since God is Love (I John 4:8[41]) the Law is Love (Rom. 13:9-10[42]), and is not burdensome (I John 5:3[43]), but rather, is gracious (Ps. 119:29[44]).


Why the Bible is the Most Amazing Book in the History of the Human Race

Greater minds than mine have come to this conclusion. Among them, Simon Greenleaf, a founder of the Harvard Law School, as well as nearly every Signer of the Constitution. They gave us an "Experiment in Liberty" that produced the most prosperous and admired nation in history. Their experiment was replaced in the 20th century with a secular experiment in government central planning, which has brought poverty and mass death wherever it was tried. A small minority of the Founders toyed with deistic and "Enlightenment" ideas against the Bible, but if they were here today, they would see where these ideas have led us, and would whole-heartedly repudiate them.

Even if you are an atheist and don't believe the Bible is the Word of God, you should still be astounded at the Bible.

  • No other book has inspired the building of more hospitals, schools, universities, or orphanages.
  • No other book has inspired more lasting works of art.
  • No other book has raised the standard of living of more people.
  • No other book explains the origin of reason and why humans are more glorious than animals.
  • No other book has influenced more codes of law in more Western nations.
  • No other book from any other world religion (Buddhism, Confucianism, Hinduism, Islam) even makes the claim that its every word was breathed out by a personal God (who is not Himself part of the Creation), through human instruments He created to perfectly write the words God intended them to write for our benefit.
  • No other book has made a greater contribution to the building of "Western Civilization."
  • No other book has inspired more symphonies, oratorios, cantatas, or other enduring musical works.
  • No other book has brought more liberty, prosperity, and virtue to the world.
  • No other book can make you more fully, truly human.
  • No other book has been banned by more tyrannical governments.
  • No other book has caused more of its most faithful readers to be arrested and executed.
    Like Jesus.
  • Maybe that's why we shouldn't be surprised that . . .
  • The U.S. government banned the Bible from your public school education.
    You should ask yourself why the government would do this.
    I mean the real reason why.

 

The Source of Law and Order

What did America's Founding Fathers mean when they spoke of "the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God?"

They were talking about the Bible.

John Locke (1632-1704) was a Christian philosopher who had a great influence in America. He said:

[T]he Law of Nature stands as an eternal rule to all men, legislators as well as others. The rules that they make for other men's actions must . . . be conformable to the Law of Nature, i.e., to the will of God.
[L]aws human must be made according to the general laws of Nature, and without contradiction to any positive law of Scripture, otherwise they are ill made.
Locke, Two Treatises on Government, Bk II sec 135. (quoting Hooker's Ecclesiastical Polity, 1.iii, § 9 )

William Blackstone (1723-1780) was cited more frequently than Locke by America's Founding Fathers. In 1810 Thomas Jefferson wryly commented that American lawyers used Blackstone's Commentaries on the Laws of England with the same dedication and reverence that Muslims used the Koran.

Blackstone described the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God in a chapter in his Commentaries entitled, "Of the Nature of Laws in General." An excerpt is found here. Among the highlights:

Man, considered as a creature, must necessarily be subject to the laws of his Creator, for he is entirely a dependent being. And consequently, as man depends absolutely upon his Maker for everything, it is necessary that he should, in all points, conform to his Maker's will.
T
his will of his Maker is called the law of nature.
T
his law of nature, being coeval [existing at the same time - ed.] with mankind, and dictated by God himself, is of course superior in obligation to any other. It is binding over all the globe in all countries, and at all times: no human laws are of any validity, if contrary to this; and such of them as are valid derive all their force and all their authority, mediately or immediately, from this original. The doctrines thus delivered we call the revealed or divine law, and they are to be found only in the holy scriptures. These precepts, when revealed, are found upon comparison to be really a part of the original law of nature, as they tend in all their consequences to man's felicity [happiness].
U
pon these two foundations, the law of nature and the law of revelation, depend all human laws; that is to say, no human laws should be suffered to contradict these. [more]

Public schools were originally created to teach everyone the Bible. America's Founding Fathers believed a Bible-based education was "necessary for good government and the happiness of mankind." The Supreme Court of the United States in 1844 said America's governments were obligated to teach the Bible in government-run schools as a "divine revelation."

I agree with influential Americans of centuries past rather than the pretend-Americans of today.

You've probably heard it said that the average person uses less than 10% of the power of the human brain.

Consider the possibility that human beings have so far used less than 1% (one percent) of the potential power of the Bible.

The Bible has created peace and prosperity wherever it has been followed. The most peaceful and prosperous nations have been those that have respected the Bible. Nations that ban the Bible are plagued by war, slavery, and poverty.  But even in America, we have put only a tiny fraction of the Bible into practice.


There are three reasons I believe the Bible is the Word of God.

Arguments Against the Reliability of the Bible

First, one reason for believing in the Bible is that it is demonstrably a miraculous book.

Most of the arguments against the Bible share common traits with one of the most common: "The Telephone Game" argument.

At a party, the first participant in "the Telephone Game" will whisper a sentence to the person in the next chair, who whispers the message to the person in the next chair, and so on around the circle. The final person in the "phone chain" reveals the message, which is compared with the first participant's real message. The two are found to be totally different, and everybody laughs.

As the argument goes, this is like the transmission of the Bible over the centuries. Nobody involved in copying the Holy Scriptures took it all that seriously, they whimsically changed words, sentences, or paragraphs to suit their fancy, and the Bible we have today bears no resemblance whatsoever to what Moses (or whoever started the chain) had in mind.

This argument can be made to sound very educated and sophisticated, but it is pathetic and juvenile.

Here is some information on the actual transmission of the Biblical text.

In 1912, Frederic Kenyon was knighted Sir Frederic Kenyon for his service as Director and Head Librarian of the British Museum. He describes how the Jews meticulously copied the Old Testament:

Besides recording varieties of reading, tradition, or conjecture, the Massoretes undertook a number of calculations which do not enter into the ordinary sphere of textual criticism. They numbered the verses, words, and letters of every book. They calculated the middle word and the middle letter of each. The enumerated verses which contained all the letters of the alphabet, or a certain number of them; and so on. These trivialities, as we may rightly consider them, had yet the effect of securing minute attention to the precise transmission of the text; and they are but an excessive manifestation of a respect for the sacred Scriptures which in itself deserves nothing but praise. The Massoretes were indeed anxious that not one jot nor tittle, not one smallest letter nor one tiny part of a letter, of the Law should pass away or be lost.

In Kenyon's day, the oldest copy of the Old Testament was a copy from the 10th century after Christ. But in 1947 the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered, and they contained a complete copy of the Book of Isaiah, dating over one thousand years earlier than that 10th century copy. The results astonished the scholarly world. Gleason Archer, in comparing the manuscript variations of the Hebrew text with pre-Christian literature such as the Egyptian Book of the Dead, states that it is amazing that the Hebrew text does not have the phenomenon of discrepancy and MS change of other literature of the same age: "Even though the two copies of Isaiah discovered in Qumran Cave 1 near the Dead Sea in 1947 were a thousand years earlier than the oldest dated manuscript previously known (A. D. 980), they proved to be word for word identical with our standard Hebrew Bible" with the exception of minor variations in spelling, on a par with the British "colour" and the American "color." "Even those Dead Sea fragments of Deuteronomy and Samuel which point to a different manuscript family from that which underlies our received Hebrew text do not indicate any differences in doctrine or teaching. They do not affect the message of revelation in the slightest."

In other words, the Old Testament we have today is virtually letter-for-letter the same Old Testament Jesus had in His day. And the copy of Isaiah that Jesus read from (Luke 4) was virtually letter-for-letter the same as the one Isaiah himself wrote. Ditto for the Proverbs of Solomon, the Psalms of David, and the books of Moses.

All this about the Bible being filled with corruptions and changes is the polar opposite of reality. There is no ancient manuscript evidence to support this view; all the evidence is against this view.

This proves that atheists live in a world of fantasy. Some atheists believe the Bible is unreliable because that's what they've been taught, and they want to be respected by those who told them. But there are some atheists who are bad people and are just making this stuff up. The ones who start these rumors about the Bible have a completely different conception of history than historical reality, and a completely different view of religious people than reality. If an atheist -- knowing even one-tenth as much about the Biblical manuscripts as the Director and Head Librarian of the British Museum -- makes up the story that the Bible is untrustworthy and unreliably transmitted through the centuries, then he is a liar who probably hates God and doesn't want to love his neighbor, refrain from stealing, or be faithful to his wife. You would be wise not to listen to such people.

Here's an analogy that better represents the analysis of different copies of an ancient manuscript. Suppose you won the Pillsbury Bake-Off. Everyone wants your winning apple strudel recipe. So you hand-write a copy. Then another. Then another. You end up making 50 copies of your recipe. Then you lose it. You call all your friends and tell them you lost the recipe, and request that they give back the copy you made for them. When you get the copies, you discover that on a couple of copies you made minor mistakes. On one copy you put "2 Tbs" instead of "2 tsp." On another recipe you  wrote "20 minutes at 350°" instead of "30 minutes at 350°." But since all the other copies had the correct item, it's easy to see which copy had the mistake. This is the science of "textual criticism."

"Textual Criticism" is how, in God's Providence, we can learn what God wants us to learn, and what the original authors of the books of the Bible wrote.

There are thousands of copies of the New Testament, some copied only decades after the original. There are only a handful of copies of the History of Herodotus (B.C. 488-428), and they are centuries older than the long-lost originals. F. F. Bruce notes,

Yet no classical scholar would listen to an argument that the authenticity of Herodotus or Thucydides is in doubt because the earliest manuscripts of their works which are of any use to us are over 1,300 years later than the originals.

You have to throw out all knowledge of human history in order to rest on the notion that we do not have a reliable copy of the Bible.  

(We'll see below this also applies to the message of the Bible itself. I agree with philosophers like Cornelius Van Til that all arguments against the Bible being the Word of God lead to epistemological insanity. That is, the argument against the Bible destroys the possibility of making any valid argument at all.)

I can sit down right now and make a copy of the Apostle Paul's letter to the Romans. I can deliberately change every occurrence of the word "Paul" in that letter to "Mortimer." I can sell it on Kindle for $0.99 as "The Lost Letter of the Apostle Mortimer to the Romans." I bet I make a couple of bucks. God isn't going to disconnect my keyboard and run and hide it in order to prevent me from changing the text of the Bible. Nor has God pulled the stylus out of the hand of any copyist who was about to copy a "9" as a "7." So there might be a copyist's error in some copies of the Bible. We can argue about what the original author was really trying to say. But there is no doubt that the authors of the Gospels were trying to say that there was a guy named Jesus who was tortured to death by the religious and political "1%" of His day and then rose from the dead on the third day. The most important messages in the Bible are inescapably clear.

"Textual Criticism" looks at actual texts and compares them. This is very different from "Higher Criticism," which presupposes that there is no God who communicates with people created in His Image, and speculates that the entire Bible evolved in a meaningless universe -- even though there are no actual texts supporting this view -- much like Darwin speculated that species evolved -- even though all the transitional forms were missing from the record. (And still are.)

Even more interesting is that the Bible is the most "anti-Semitic" book ever written. It says the Jews were the most pampered nation on earth, the beneficiary of miraculous choosing and protection (and patience) by God, yet the Jews were the most faithless and rebellious people on earth. Think "Golden Calf" while Moses is getting Ten Commandments written by the finger of God. Think "sacrifice children to Moloch" after all that God has done for Israel. Yet the Jews continued to work like obsessive-compulsive maniacs to preserve this anti-semitic screed and transmit it accurately. I think they were directed by the "invisible hand" of "Divine Providence."

It's a True Story

And I like the story. That's my Second  argument in favor of the Bible.

 This is the flip-side of the first reason. Unbelief leads to chaos, but obeying the Bible leads to peace and prosperity. It leads to my being a better human being.

If I look at myself, the world around me, and the history of the world through the lens of the Bible, it makes sense in an attractive way.

But a nice story is just a fairy tale if it's not really true. How do I know the Bible is the Word of a true and trustworthy God?

Flipping back to the first reason, I believe the Bible is God's Word because unbelief is horrifying.

Human beings have value.
      They have value because they are created in the Image of God.
      They have value because God commands us to value them.
      Human beings do not have value if they are meaningless conglomerations of chemicals and water, randomly mutated when acted upon by the blind collision of impersonal forces of the universe over billions of years.
      If I am my own god, and I chose not to value other human beings, then they have no value. They are dead meat if I choose to exterminate them. Human beings have no value if "Smith" -- a meaningless conglomeration of chemicals and water -- chooses to rearrange the molecules of another meaningless and blind conglomeration of chemicals and water -- "Jones" -- from a state of being which we call "life" to a state of being which we call "death." This meaningless re-arrangement of molecules has no real significance in a cold, random, meaningless, blind, impersonal universe.
      Nobody gets alarmed if an eagle grabs a gopher and feeds it to its young. Why should we get alarmed if "Smith" makes "Jones" his prey?

If the Bible is the Word of God, I have a good reason for believing that man has value. If the Bible is false, the idea that randomly-mutated conglomerations of chemicals have value is a fairy tale.

Of course, if you want to rape and kill whenever you feel like it, denying the inspiration of the Bible is a necessary first step in avoiding cognitive dissonance. The next step is to reduce absolutes to personal preference:

Chocolate or Vanilla?
Birth or Abortion?
Nurture or Torture?

"It's all just a matter of personal taste."

I've never heard an argument against the Bible that is compelling enough for me to reject its story and embrace the alternative of meaninglessness. In fact,

The Third reason I believe the Bible is the Word of God goes back to the first reason, relating to the story: I believe the story-tellers. There are two reasons I believe them.

First, they appear to be people of integrity. Simon Greenleaf, a co-founder of the Harvard Law School and the greatest authority on the law of evidence in the 19th century, said that if the New Testament were to be subjected to the Anglo-American laws of evidence in a court of law, the resurrection of Christ would be an established fact. The witnesses (the authors of the Gospels, for example) are credible witnesses.

It has been said, "History is written by the conquerors." The Old Testament is different. It is obviously not written by biased Jews who only wanted Israel to look good. The Old Testament is in a sense the most "anti-semitic" book ever written. It paints a picture of a group of people who were chosen by God and given every favor, and still rebelled and failed. They are portrayed as history's most faithless losers. And yet their story was meticulously and faithfully copied over and over by those very same folks.

This is because they believed the Bible was the Word of God, not just the word of some man.

But one element of the story these credible witnesses report is that God moved them to speak and to write exactly what God wanted written. That's their testimony. I believe it. I believe it because I like the idea of living in a universe that's lovingly controlled by a personal and sovereign God. There are no credible reasons given by atheists why I should not accept this entire worldview.

Peaceful and loving people want the Bible to be true. Rational people believe the Bible is the Word of God.


Let's Be Honest about Jesus and the Bible

Most people -- especially those who deny that He is God incarnate -- will say that Jesus Christ was "a great religious teacher." But they lie. They really HATE Jesus Christ. If you were to quote some of His more offensive lines, and attribute them to Jerry Falwell or some other well-known controversial Christian figure, that figure would be accused of bigotry, hate-crimes, and delusional behavior.

What would be the value of your life if you lived in Germany in the years 1935-1945, and the only thing you had to say about Adolph Hitler was "He's a really talented public speaker." You did not challenge his rise to power. You did not criticize his evil reign. The only thing your children and grandchildren know about you and what you thought about Hitler, National Socialism, anti-semitism, and genocidal totalitarianism was that Hitler was "a great public speaker."

Or suppose you lived in Calcutta, India, and like most others, ignored the lepers and the dying. Your only comment about Mother Teresa is that she kept her sari "appropriately laundered."

To deny that Jesus was God and affirm that He was "a good teacher," is as irrational and morally vapid as the assessments of Hitler and Mother Teresa above. If Mother Teresa claimed to be God she would be reduced from a Nobel Prize-winning humanitarian to a nut-case. Indeed, she (rightfully) would have been denied the Nobel Prize. If Hitler were to claim to be God he would be elevated from dictator to anti-Christ.

So why let Jesus off the hook?

The Jews of Jesus' day were not dumb. The Jews executed Jesus because He claimed to be the Christ, the Anointed Messiah, equal with God. If Jesus was not equal with God, then He was nuts. Whatever other nice things He said, things that might sound good on a Hallmark® Card, If Jesus was not who He said He was, then He was a liar or a lunatic.

A few atheists have logically concluded that Jesus Christ was evil, not good. They see Him as a mere man who claimed to be God.

Jesus predicted His own assassination, and said that all His claims would be verified by His resurrection from the dead. If you are willing to exercise your human abilities to study history, evaluate evidence, and reach conclusions, you will conclude that Jesus did in fact rise from the dead, that His claims are true, and that the Bible is reliable. One of the architects of the Harvard Law School, whose 3-volume treatise on the Law of Evidence was the standard authority on the subject for generations, investigated the historical records which we call the Gospels, and concluded that Christ's Resurrection was an historical fact and could be proven so in any court of law. More here.

Any court, that is, which is Christian. A court that refuses to accept the claims of Christ is a court which is committing suicide. Christianity is the necessary presupposition of justice, the foundation of the very concept of "proof." The Bible is the chronicle of human rebellion against logic, facts, proof, reason, justice, and life itself.

Is Bible "outdated?"

Modern Americans have been trained to believe the Bible is "outdated" or "primitive." The modern world, by comparison, is "sophisticated," "scientific" and "secure." Who would ever want to go back to the world of the Bible?

It only takes a little thought to realize that "the modern world" is not all it's cracked up to be, and the world of the Bible -- the world of Vine & Fig Tree -- may have much to teach us. It is the "experts" of the modern world who have taught us to pooh-pooh the Bible. 

They are wrong.

They say we can't believe in miracles. They are wrong.

They say Biblical Morality is "harsh" and the God of the Old Testament is "cruel." They are wrong.

The visible effect of God's Word in human history is called "civilization."

The Issue Is Authority - "We Will Not Have This Man Rule Over Us!" (Luke 19:14)

The Failure of Non-Christian Ethics

Are we being "Judgmental?" Yes, definitely!

From Moses to Malachi, the Bible sets forth an unchanging standard of Justice, Mercy, and Faith (Matthew 23:23). When faithfully taught and obeyed, observance of Biblical Law mends the torn fabric of life. Bringing our lives under the total jurisdiction of the Bible is the key to social renewal, not reforming the lives of others through the impersonal violence of statist bureaucratic regulation. Biblical Law is God's pattern for peace, justice, and harmony.

Theonomy vs. Autonomy

The Comprehensive Scope of Biblical Law: Every Area of Life, Every Activity
Obedience in Life pleases God more than Ritual and Sacrifices in Church

Can you be a Christian if you don't “worship” God?
Can you “worship” God if you don't worship the Bible?
The Word of God is Divine. Not the paper and ink. The Word.

The Gospel Message is a Word from God. Every Word of God is Law.


Vine & Fig Tree publications emphasize Biblical Law. God's Law is the standard by which world governments are criticized, and it charts a path for each of us that leads to recovery and wholeness.

America began as a Christian nation, a "City upon a Hill" (Matthew 5:13-16), and the practical reliance upon the Bible in everyday life made America the most admired nation on earth.

America is no longer a Christian Republic, it is a Secular Empire. The United States exports more weapons than Bibles. The U.S. engages in the "quartering of troops" in over 130 nations. The United States has formed "entangling alliances" with dictatorships and pagan nations which have turned around to threaten each one of us. During the 20th century thousands of people were "legally" murdered each and every day by people working for these governments. Hundreds of millions more will be liquidated in the 21st century if present trends continue.

Who will help bring about Micah's Vine & Fig Tree world? Who will inspire the next generation to replace violence and lawlessness with service and order? Certainly not the 40% of America's public school graduates who are "functionally illiterate." And even among the remaining millions who are literate enough to function in a secular empire, few are Biblically literate enough to foster a spiritual renewal and make America again a City upon a Hill.


We need a generation of Christians who have
a deep reverence for the Bible as the Word of God.


By "deep" I do not mean "mystical" or emotional. I mean a profoundly practical living relationship with the Word of God which produces dynamic, effective, concrete answers and solutions to the problems and questions that a secular empire barely acknowledges. Answers to conflicts between labor and management, parents and children, bureaucrats and citizens. A workable blueprint for a Christian civilization that begins at home, school, business, and extends across the globe.

This deep reverence for the Bible as the Word of God means a practical knowledge of the Bible as the Law of God.

This concept, called "Theonomy," ("God's Law") has many opponents. Their opposition to Biblical Law is actually opposition to God Himself. And if they are offended at the concept of obligation to obey God's Law, they will really be upset at the idea of worshiping God's Law. But as a son of Abraham, the true Christian worships God's Law.

Abraham the Patriarch was a man of God. The personal relationship between a Godly man and the Lord is manifested most clearly in his relationship to God's Law:

Genesis 18:19
For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the LORD, to do justice and judgment; that the LORD may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him.

Genesis 22:18
And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice.

Genesis 26:5
Because that Abraham obeyed my voice, and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws.

The Psalmist further exemplified this attitude. Over and over again the Psalmist exclaims that he loves the Law and even says that he worships the Law.

But some are quite uncomfortable with the pro-nomian attitude of "the man after God's own heart," and wonder if it is legitimate for Christians in the New Covenant to take a similar attitude, one which some liberals have called "bibliolatry."

Of course, in spite of their inspired exclamations, the Patriarchs of the Old Covenant did not have the Holy Spirit to empower them to obedience, that the righteousness of the Law would be fulfilled in their lives.[1] But despite their failure, their goal should be our goal.

New Covenant Continuity

One of the great promises of the Prophets (as we shall see in future issues) is the promise that the Law would be written on the hearts of the New Covenant members. This manner of speaking (writing on the heart) indicates the devotion and conformity to God's Law. Note that the very statutes of the Law are included:

A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh. And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them. (Ezekiel 36:27)

This is my covenant with them, saith the LORD; My spirit that is upon thee, and my words which I have put in thy mouth, shall not depart out of thy mouth, nor out of the mouth of thy seed, nor out of the mouth of thy seed's seed, saith the LORD, from henceforth and for ever. (Isaiah 59:21)

And David My Servant shall be King over them; and they shall have one shepherd: they shall also walk in my judgments, and observe my statutes, and do them. (Ezekiel 37:24)

Finally, the most famous promise, quoted by the writer to the Hebrews, in Jeremiah 31:31-34:

But this will be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.

Clearly, the Law of God was not something that the Prophets believed would be discarded in the New Covenant like used sandpaper. Jesus clearly says He came to fulfill these Godly expectations (Matthew 5:17-20).


As we explain the "Vine & Fig Tree" vision, there are many non-Christians who are attracted by the vision of a decentralized society which beats its "swords into plowshares." But as we examine with searching detail the words of the Prophet Micah, many of them will ask,

Why bother trying to understand the Bible and some peasant religious nut who lived three thousand years ago? I am "modern" and "scientific" and I have no interest in church or religion. Please don't give me the Bible. What do I need with the Bible?

This is a question everyone asks. And I do mean everyone. Not just those who are actively working to brainwash Christians and prop up their "New World Order" military dictatorship, but church-going Catholics and Protestants too. Even Evangelicals and Fundamentalists — for all their Bible-thumping — are a product of their culture, and our culture is at war with Micah.
And Isaiah.
And Abraham, Moses and Jesus.

Our culture is at war with the Bible.

Most "Bible-believing Christians" are part of this culture. They are not aware of the fact that Jesus wants His followers to be "extremists."

So Third, we want to convince atheists and non-Christians that they should seriously consider the Bible.

Vine & Fig Tree is a movement in solidarity with Abraham, Moses, Isaiah, Jesus, and millions of working-class families who have given their lives to protect copies of the Scriptures from the violent institutions of church and state, attempting to live that revelation out in their homes and in the world. This is part of what we refer to as Patriarchy.

It goes back to the book of Genesis, the Patriarch Abraham, and ultimately back to the Creation of the World.

If you're an atheist or if you're a modern Christian who believes the Fundamentalists are totally out to lunch on their view of the Bible, then this page is for you. You won't be convinced in the 15k that makes up this web page, but hopefully the dialogue can get started. I hope you email your comments to me at "KevinCraig @ KevinCraig.us."

There are two accounts of the Creation and Purpose of Man competing for your loyalty.

THE BIBLE SAYS that the human race was created by a loving, Infinite-Personal God, Who placed Man into a beautiful Garden to live in families and take care of the planet.

MODERN SCIENTIFIC DEMOCRACY SEZ there is no God, except as you decide to create him/her/it. Man is the random mutation of genetic material, emerging without purpose and without meaning from a "primordial soup" of chemicals and energy. Marriage and families are "oppressive," and the planet is to be (a) worshipped [the "left"] or (b) exploited, "for tomorrow we die" [the "right"].

What are the results? What has "modern" actually delivered?

These words come to mind:

* violent * superficial * selfish * materialistic * conflict * secular *
* cheap * undisciplined * lust for power * corruption * illiterate *
* instant gratification *
* dictatorship * pollution * war *
* loneliness * disposable * kickback * hopelessness *

People everywhere feel it:

Something's not right.

People everywhere feel powerless:

What can be done? To whom can we turn?

Who are our heroes? Where are true leaders?

People everywhere feel lost:

Are there no absolutes?
Are there no values worth living for — worth dying for?

THIS IS THE MODERN WORLD

The Christmas Conspiracy — as seen in Micah's Vine & Fig Tree prophecy — is a movement which self-consciously defends the Bible as an infallible revelation of the hope, values, and love of God. The "Enlightened" Empire of the Status Quo is at war with the Bible and with followers of Christ who for centuries have believed it to be the Word of God.

The Christian Patriarch accepts as bedrock fact the Bible's historical chronicle of

Eden vs. Empire
Patriarchy vs. Politics
The Kingdom of God vs. the kingdom of Caesar

To ignore these choices is to choose to die at the hand of the Status Quo.

But can I trust the Bible?
And, really now, PATRIARCHY!?!

I answer: Can we trust those who say we can't trust the Bible?

I'll say it again: I can't convince you to become a Fundamentalist in one web page. All I can do is infect you with a desire to rethink your opposition to the Bible, and indicate my own willingness to continue to dialogue with you.

Let's take one of the most controversial issues surrounding the Bible: Creationism vs. Evolutionism. I'm a six-day Creationist.

You take the Bible literally?
You believe the world was created in six days?!?
What are you, some kind of obscurantist?
DON'T YOU LISTEN TO SCIENCE?

It is precisely because my eyes are wide open to what "scientists" have done to us that I reject their lies. I find it far more comfortable to side with peasants who stood against powerful, violent Empires — quite apart from any faith that God used them as mouthpieces of His revelation to us.

Anyone who's honest will admit that scientists were not "forced" to abandon Creationism by "the facts." Evolution was a "scientific"-sounding philosophical rationalization for a hatred of the Bible which resulted from an unwillingness to submit to its Authority. It is simply not a case of "The Facts" vs. the Faith. The issue is ethics, not knowledge. The unwillingness of scientists and philosophers to bridle their wills under the Standard of God's Commandments resulted in the "Military-Industrial Complex," the technocratic institutionalization of violence; the quest for god-like power.

What do I think of when I hear the word "science"?

* The Atomic Bomb * monosodium glutamate * smog * MTV * HMO's *
* "The Death of God" *
* "safe" abortions * "safe" sex * "assisted" death *
* The Death of Man *

Pretty impressive.

But it's not the inventions; it's the ideology. It's the religious values upon which modern science is built.

Yes, religious.

The powerful and well-trained minds of the military leaders and politicians who plan their wars and turn the wheels of their war machine in an unmovable path toward death and destruction are dominated by a view of the world — indeed, of the entire universe — which is self-consciously at war with reality — God's reality as it is described to us by God through Jesus and the Prophets.

Scientists want all the world to believe as they do, to accept their view of the universe — its origin, nature and destiny — and, having accepted this view, to place our trust in them as those who understand best the path to health, prosperity, safety, security — in short, to salvation.

Everybody wants "salvation." Call it "the good life," or "the American Dream." The question is, How do you get it? Modern science says, "Better living through chemistry." Politicians have learned the lesson: Salvation comes through the barrel of a gun. Urban twelve-year olds carry machine guns in pursuit of this faith. The structures of our society teach Salvation through Power. Members of The Christmas Conspiracy are committed to resisting their propaganda.

There are some people today who consider themselves "radicals" or "resisters." They have not resisted as they should have. Most people in the "Peace Movement" believe that the universe is as the President and his generals and scientists describe it. Conservatives listen dutifully to the prophets of the Empire, and spend great sums of money to send their children to their seminaries (Harvard, Stanford, Yale, etc.).

The priesthood of the Bush/Clinton/Obama regime — in their white coats or silk ties, working in their university degree-lined offices — has convinced nearly everyone that Jesus and the Prophets of God are hopelessly misinformed concerning reality. Rather than accepting their Word as an Absolute Authority, we have been taught to choose for ourselves. We are all "liberals" now, not "Fundamentalists."

The simple fact is that there are two competing religions here: Biblical Christianity, and an idolatry which we might call "neo-Baalism." [10]

We must understand these two religions, see that they are in complete opposition, discern which one leads to life, and then begin to live in terms of the one we choose.


Who believes in Neo-Baalism?

Who believes in Creationism?

Scientists

Moses

Generals

Micah

Politicians

Mothers

Professors

Those who work with their hands

Industrialists

Farmers

Technocrats

Nearly everyone before 1776

BATF / FBI / IRS

Jesus


What is the True Religion?

The Apostle James says,

If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man's religion is vain. Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.
James 1:26-27

As a conservative Bible-thumper, it took me a while to realize that True Religion is not a mind full of facts and crafty arguments ready for rapid deployment in a theological debate. I still believe that we ought to strive for "doctrinal purity," but the ultimate goal is to be "unspotted" from the Empires of the world. A bridled tongue and compassion for the weak are among the Christ-like character traits we must develop. The Apostle Paul says that when we develop these traits, we will not be "carried about" by the Modern World, by defenders of the Status Quo, which is founded on "the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting."[12]

I want my children to choose Micah's religion, not Caesar's. I want them to look forward to a day — indeed, to make today the day — we beat swords into plowshares. I want them to resist those who hypnotize us all into forging spears for killing instead of hooks for pruning. I want to see them live in terms of Micah's Vine & Fig Tree vision. I am naive if I expect them to be indoctrinated in this vision in any institutional church or Empire-run school.

To the extent our thinking has not been clarified, and as we are not consistent with our foundational principles, we will not experience the harmony that God intends for us and described through the words of the prophet Micah.

We have already seen this in the 20th century. We have seen it, but we refuse to see it. Over 200 million people have been deliberately killed in this century alone; a greater percentage of the population than any previous century. The century of atheism is the century of mass death. Evolutionism means Genocide.

But modern man seeks the Tempter's fantasy: "to be as gods" (Genesis 3:5). Anything is better than admitting that God is God and we are not. Even death.

All they that hate Me, love death. Proverbs 8:36

And so I write with a sense of urgency.

And yet I don't write all I could because I don't have the strength to face the battle. When a known adulterer and crack user becomes President and tells a nation that "I didn't inhale," and when the nation can apathetically view televised scenes of the government bringing tanks against Waco, Texas citizens whose only "crime" is non-conforming thought, we are only days away from the time when those same viewers will hear the televised call to take up arms against any and all who will not confess that man is god and the State is his savior.

Jesus said His followers must be willing to "take up your cross." In our day He would have said, "take up your firing squad."

I am ready.
Are you?


Is Modernism a Force for Peace?


I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you,
that I have set before you

life and death
blessing and cursing

T H E R E F O R E   C H O O S E   L I F E

that both you and your children may live;
that you may love the LORD your God,
that you may obey His voice,
and that you may cling to Him,
for He is your life and the length of your days.
Deuteronomy 30:19


Vine & Fig Tree is my choice; the Bible, not the Status Quo.

Now therefore, fear the LORD, serve Him in sincerity and in truth, and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the River and in Egypt. Serve the LORD! And if it seems evil to you to serve the LORD, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD. Joshua 24:14-15


NOTES

(9) Just as our nation has apostatized from the theology and cultural vision of the Puritans.  [Return to text]
(10) We'll be discussing "Baalism" later on. It was an ancient religion which most scientists in our day believe.  [Return to text]
(12) Ephesians 4:14. [Return to text]


"Our object should not be to have scripture on our side but to be on the side of scripture; and however dear any sentiment may have become by being long entertained, so soon as it is seen to be contrary to the Bible, we must be prepared to abandon it without hesitation."
William Symington



Continue to "How to Worship God's Law."


NOTES

(1) Romans 8:1-4 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. {2} For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. {3} For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: {4} That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. 
[Back to text]

(2) Isaiah 41:4 Who hath wrought and done it, calling the generations from the beginning? I the LORD, the first, and with the last; I am he. 
[Back to text]

(3) Isaiah 43:10-13 Ye are my witnesses, saith the LORD, and my servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me. {11} I, even I, am the LORD; and beside me there is no saviour. {12} I have declared, and have saved, and I have showed, when there was no strange god among you: therefore ye are my witnesses, saith the LORD, that I am God. {13} Yea, before the day was I am he; and there is none that can deliver out of my hand: I will work, and who shall let it? 
[Back to text]

(4) Isaiah 44:6 Thus saith the LORD the King of Israel, and his redeemer the LORD of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last; and beside me there is no God. 
[Back to text]

(5) Isaiah 48:12-13 Hearken unto me, O Jacob and Israel, my called; I am he; I am the first, I also am the last. {13} Mine hand also hath laid the foundation of the earth, and my right hand hath spanned the heavens: when I call unto them, they stand up together. 
[Back to text]

(6) Exodus 3:8,14 And I am come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that land unto a good land and a large, unto a land flowing with milk and honey; unto the place of the Canaanites, and the Hittites, and the Amorites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites. {14} And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you. 
[Back to text]

(7) Exodus 33:18 And he said, I beseech thee, show me thy glory. 
[Back to text]

(8) Exodus 34:6 And the LORD passed by before him, and proclaimed, The LORD, The LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, 
[Back to text]

(9) Exodus 20:2 I am the LORD thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. 
[Back to text]

(10) Exodus 3:13-18 And Moses said unto God, Behold, when I come unto the children of Israel, and shall say unto them, The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you; and they shall say to me, What is his name? what shall I say unto them? {14} And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you. {15} And God said moreover unto Moses, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, The LORD God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, hath sent me unto you: this is my name for ever, and this is my memorial unto all generations. {16} Go, and gather the elders of Israel together, and say unto them, The LORD God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob, appeared unto me, saying, I have surely visited you, and seen that which is done to you in Egypt: {17} And I have said, I will bring you up out of the affliction of Egypt unto the land of the Canaanites, and the Hittites, and the Amorites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites, unto a land flowing with milk and honey. {18} And they shall hearken to thy voice: and thou shalt come, thou and the elders of Israel, unto the king of Egypt, and ye shall say unto him, The LORD God of the Hebrews hath met with us: and now let us go, we beseech thee, three days' journey into the wilderness, that we may sacrifice to the LORD our God. 
[Back to text]

(11) Exodus 20:2 I am the LORD thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. 
[Back to text]

(12) Leviticus 18:2-5 Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, I am the LORD your God. {3} After the doings of the land of Egypt, wherein ye dwelt, shall ye not do: and after the doings of the land of Canaan, whither I bring you, shall ye not do: neither shall ye walk in their ordinances. {4} Ye shall do my judgments, and keep mine ordinances, to walk therein: I am the LORD your God. {5} Ye shall therefore keep my statutes, and my judgments: which if a man do, he shall live in them: I am the LORD. Leviticus 18:30 Therefore shall ye keep mine ordinance, that ye commit not any one of these abominable customs, which were committed before you, and that ye defile not yourselves therein: I am the LORD your God. 
[Back to text]

(13) Leviticus 19:37 Therefore shall ye observe all my statutes, and all my judgments, and do them: I am the LORD. 
[Back to text]

(14) Deuteronomy 6:4-9 Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD: {5} And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. {6} And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: {7} And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. {8} And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. {9} And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates. 
[Back to text]

(15) Job 40:11-14 Cast abroad the rage of thy wrath: and behold every one that is proud, and abase him. {12} Look on every one that is proud, and bring him low; and tread down the wicked in their place. {13} Hide them in the dust together; and bind their faces in secret. {14} Then will I also confess unto thee that thine own right hand can save thee. 
[Back to text]

(16) Romans 4:18-20 Who against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be. {19} And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sarah's womb: {20} He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; 
[Back to text]

(17) Romans 9:20 Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus? 
[Back to text]

(18) Hebrews 11:4 By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it he being dead yet speaketh.
Hebrews 11:7-8 By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith. {8} By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went.
Hebrews 11:17 By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son. 
[Back to text]

(19) Exodus 20:3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me. 
[Back to text]

(20) Deuteronomy 6:1-9 is reprinted at the end of this essay. ("Supplemental Texts") 
[Back to text]

(21) Matthew 8:19-22 And a certain scribe came, and said unto him, Master, I will follow thee whithersoever thou goest. {20} And Jesus saith unto him, The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head. {21} And another of his disciples said unto him, Lord, suffer me first to go and bury my father. {22} But Jesus said unto him, Follow me; and let the dead bury their dead. 
[Back to text]

(22) Matthew 10:34-38 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. {35} For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. {36} And a man's foes shall be they of his own household. {37} He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. {38} And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me. 
[Back to text]

(23) Philippians 3:8 Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, 
[Back to text]

(24) Romans 14:23 And he that doubteth is damned if he eat, because he eateth not of faith: for whatsoever is not of faith is sin. 
[Back to text]

(25) 1 Corinthians 10:31 Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. 
[Back to text]

(26) 2 Corinthians 10:5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; 
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(27) Colossians 3:17 And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.
Colossians 3:23 And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; 
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(28) Deuteronomy 4:1-14 "Now, O Israel, listen to the statutes and the judgments which I teach you to observe, that you may live, and go in and possess the land which the LORD God of your fathers is giving you. [2] You shall not add to the word which I command you, nor take from it, that you may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you. [3] Your eyes have seen what the LORD did at Baal Peor; for the LORD your God has destroyed from among you all the men who followed Baal of Peor. [4] But you who held fast to the LORD your God are alive today, every one of you. [5] Surely I have taught you statutes and judgments, just as the LORD my God commanded me, that you should act according to them in the land which you go to possess. [6] Therefore be careful to observe them; for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the peoples who will hear all these statutes, and say, 'Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.' [7] For what great nation is there that has God so near to it, as the LORD our God is to us, for whatever reason we may call upon Him? [8] And what great nation is there that has such statutes and righteous judgments as are in all this law which I set before you this day? [9] Only take heed to yourself, and diligently keep yourself, lest you forget the things your eyes have seen, and lest they depart from your heart all the days of your life. And teach them to your children and your grandchildren, [10] especially concerning the day you stood before the LORD your God in Horeb, when the LORD said to me, 'Gather the people to Me, and I will let them hear My words, that they may learn to fear Me all the days they live on the earth, and that they may teach their children.' [11] Then you came near and stood at the foot of the mountain, and the mountain burned with fire to the midst of heaven, with darkness, cloud, and thick darkness. [12] And the LORD spoke to you out of the midst of the fire. You heard the sound of the words, but saw no form; you only heard a voice. [13] So He declared to you His covenant which He commanded you to perform, the Ten Commandments; and He wrote them on two tablets of stone. [14] And the LORD commanded me at that time to teach you statutes and judgments, that you might observe them in the land which you cross over to possess. 
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(29) Deuteronomy 6:1-9 "Now this is the commandment, and these are the statutes and judgments which the LORD your God has commanded to teach you, that you may observe them in the land which you are crossing over to possess, [2] that you may fear the LORD your God, to keep all His statutes and His commandments which I command you, you and your son and your grandson, all the days of your life, and that your days may be prolonged. [3] Therefore hear, O Israel, and be careful to observe it, that it may be well with you, and that you may multiply greatly as the LORD God of your fathers has promised you; 'a land flowing with milk and honey.' [4] Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one! [5] You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. [6] And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. [7] You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. [8] You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. [9] You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. 
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(30) Deuteronomy 8:1-9 "Every commandment which I command you today you must be careful to observe, that you may live and multiply, and go in and possess the land of which the LORD swore to your fathers. [2] And you shall remember that the LORD your God led you all the way these forty years in the wilderness, to humble you and test you, to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep His commandments or not. [3] So He humbled you, allowed you to hunger, and fed you with manna which you did not know nor did your fathers know, that He might make you know that man shall not live by bread alone; but man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the LORD. [4] Your garments did not wear out on you, nor did your foot swell these forty years. [5] You should know in your heart that as a man chastens his son, so the LORD your God chastens you. [6] Therefore you shall keep the commandments of the LORD your God, to walk in His ways and to fear Him. [7] For the LORD your God is bringing you into a good land, a land of brooks of water, of fountains and springs, that flow out of valleys and hills; [8] a land of wheat and barley, of vines and fig trees and pomegranates, a land of olive oil and honey; [9] a land in which you will eat bread without scarcity, in which you will lack nothing; a land whose stones are iron and out of whose hills you can dig copper. 
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(31) Matthew 4:4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God. 
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(32) John 14:15 If ye love me, keep my commandments. John 14:21 He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him. 
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(33) Romans 4:16-25 Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all, {17} (As it is written, I have made thee a father of many nations,) before him whom he believed, even God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those things which be not as though they were. {18} Who against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be. {19} And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sarah's womb: {20} He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; {21} And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform. {22} And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness. {23} Now it was not written for his sake alone, that it was imputed to him; {24} But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead; {25} Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification. 
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(34) 1 Corinthians 14:37-38 If any man think himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things that I write unto you are the commandments of the Lord. {38} But if any man be ignorant, let him be ignorant. 
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(35) Acts 9:2 And desired of him letters to Damascus to the synagogues, that if he found any of this way, whether they were men or women, he might bring them bound unto Jerusalem. 
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(36) Acts 19:9 But when divers were hardened, and believed not, but spake evil of that way before the multitude, he departed from them, and separated the disciples, disputing daily in the school of one Tyrannus. Acts 19:23 And the same time there arose no small stir about that way. 
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(37) Acts 22:4 And I persecuted this way unto the death, binding and delivering into prisons both men and women. 
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(38) Acts 24:14 But this I confess unto thee, that after the way which they call heresy, so worship I the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the law and in the prophets:

Acts 24:22 And when Felix heard these things, having more perfect knowledge of that way, he deferred them, and said, When Lysias the chief captain shall come down, I will know the uttermost of your matter. 
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(39) John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. 
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(40) Genesis 3:5 For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil. 
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(41) 1 John 4:8 He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. 
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(42) Romans 13:9-10 For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. {10} Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law. 
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(43) 1 John 5:3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous. 
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(44) Psalms 119:29 Remove from me the way of lying: and grant me thy law graciously. 
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I appreciate your comments. Write me at Kevin4VFT@KevinCraig.us.



The
Christmas Conspiracy

Virtue

Vine & Fig Tree

Paradigm Shift

Theocracy


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Tuesday, January 9, 2001, 7:13:10 AM