with Jeremy Westcott –
Arise, shine; for your light has come
And the glory of the LORD has risen upon you.
For behold, darkness will cover the earth
And deep darkness the peoples:
But the LORD will rise upon you
And His glory will appear upon you.
Nations will come to your light,
And kings to the brightness of your rising’
I said last time that we need to look at how we understand prophecy. This is a very familiar scripture, but how can we be sure we are interpreting it correctly?
When is darkness covering the earth? How is this to be understood? Surely this is about the birth of Jesus? He came as the light into the darkness of the world. This is certainly how people who recognised Jesus as the Messiah when He came would have interpreted this scripture.
But what about in our day? Or what about the return of Jesus? We know there is coming (and perhaps we are already entering) a time of increasing shaking, of increasing darkness, and that only the Kingdom will remain.
It is vital that we know how to read scriptures in the correct light.
Religious doctrines and traditions are about to be exposed for what they are and religious spirits hate exposure. After all, Nephilim spirits are looking to rule and to exercise control of the world’s systems without anyone getting wise to them. If we allow that, then the promises of God are always going to be represented as being for another place, another time, or another people.
Looking forwards, looking back
I was brought up in a religious atmosphere like that. In the Cornish town where I lived, there was not a single church practising baptism by full immersion. When I read in the Word that that was how God intended it, I had to travel 12 miles to find somewhere they did it that way. No one had even heard of baptism in the Holy Spirit – I had to go even further to find people who were experiencing that.
And yet, in my town, the churches were all very keen on looking forward to the Second Coming, on what God would do in the future (their understanding was that He would rescue them so they would not have to go through the tribulation). They were also very hot on what God had done in the past, by sending Jesus to save us. But in the period in between, they were just hanging on, expecting (and experiencing) constant defeat and setbacks. It was all about the past or the future, never now. People did get saved, I saw them setting out enthusiastic and optimistic, but over time their enthusiasm was squashed, or just drained away. Religious spirits thrive on and seek to perpetuate this kind of situation.
Information or revelation
Revelation does not come through study. I know, because I studied the Bible a great deal. When it came to information about the Bible I could answer pretty much any question you could throw at me. But the Kingdom of God did not fit into my belief system. When God began to speak to me about it, my brain starting flashing ‘Does not compute’. Those who know me will tell you that I am very strong on what I believe. But I am also willing to change if God shows me I have it wrong. I had to get to the stage where I was prepared to jettison everything, if God showed me to. This is hard, and it may well be hard for you if you are willing to go there. You are not alone. I have had to let go of doctrines and understanding that I really thought were right. And that process continues – I know what it is to be challenged.
So if it is not through study, then how does understanding of these things come? It comes through meditation and the revelation of the Holy Spirit. We cannot expect to just figure it out from what we see around us today, to make it fit. The truth is, we don’t have to fit with the world, we need to understand God’s purposes. We need to spend time meditating on what the Bible says, and the best way to understand it is to let the Bible interpret itself. An important principle of Bible interpretation, and one that is widely accepted, is to go back to the first use of a word or phrase. Then we can see how words or phrases are used throughout the Bible. That will help stop us from falling into error.
Greek and Hebrew mindsets
To really get to grips with all this, we will need to consider the Hebrew context of scripture. In the West we are at a disadvantage because it is not really possible to grasp the true meaning of scripture from a typical western mindset: we have been taught to think in a totally different way. So in coming posts I will begin to explain how to see things from a Hebrew point of view.
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