Thursday, February 17, 2011

If I tell you a lie, can we still be friends?


An excerpt of my new book, ‘Battling the Son’s of Perdition’

The Advantages of Betrayal- Betrayal Motivated by Lust

The art of betrayal is not as uncommon as we would think. In fact, there are great advantages to be had from practicing this timeless art. I say that with a somewhat cynical frame of mind. The practice of betrayal was introduced in the Garden of Eden when Satan bewitches Eve and convinces Eve that God is holding out on them both. As she listens to Satan, which presented himself in the form of a serpent, Eve begins to aspire as to what they could really accomplish if, in fact, God was withholding the truth from them. It wasn’t long till Eve made her move which involved her husband, Adam. They both in turn, betrayed their very Creator which breathed the breath of life into Adam and brought life unto a woman made from a rib of man. They chose to listen and believe the father of lies, Satan, than to take Father God at His word and trust Him. God found Himself betrayed (but not by surprise) by His very own creation and to this day, Jehovah God has to continually pursue man if there is going to be any reconciliation on the part of man. The big picture here is if man had not fallen in the very beginning, we would have no need of meeting Jesus, the Saviour of the world. Almighty God desired that all men and women meet his only begotten Son, the LORD JESUS CHRIST by faith. The Apostle Paul gives this synopsis.

“Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned: (For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law. Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam's transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come. But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many. And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification. For if by one man's offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.) Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous. Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound: That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 5:12-21

It seems, when an individual senses that something is being withheld that is deemed advantageous to them, it is this instigation of doubt that introduces the seed of betrayal. From that incident in the Garden of Eden until now, betrayal has become very convenient, competent, and has proved to be a very useful tool of manipulation. In reality, mankind is afraid of God for numerous reasons. And what man is afraid of or doesn’t comprehend, he cannot trust to begin with. Salvation of one’s soul is by faith.

I believe God disclosed a truth to Adam and Eve in the Garden that was hard to comprehend in their perfect environment and only to mention, their mentality, meaning their child-like innocence. The truth that was disclosed was that there is a tree in the Garden and not just any tree. But a special and unique tree that possessed properties of a spiritual nature. By divine decree a tree that could bring about applications of undesirable circumstances in enormous magnitude with eternal consequences. In fact, if they partook of the ‘Tree of Good and Evil’, they would surely die. This tree possessed all the knowledge of truth of this world, the universe and beyond. I feel this new information instilled a fear in their hearts for something that they were not familiar with, thus invoking fear and doubt. Someone once said that ‘ignorance is bliss’. It was the injection of an outsider’s point of view, a third party, if you will allow me to introduce Satan again, which reassured them that God was really attempting to pull the wool over their eyes. I’m sure they felt with the stunt of not revealing the whole truth of the matter, they were insulted and it set the stage to reject the words of truth more readily than ever. The real truth was they had never encountered this creature of Satan before in their realm of animals and reptiles. No doubt, they were well acquainted with snakes and lizards, but never one that was so eloquent with worldly wisdom. Therefore, any injection of subject matter from any source was more believable than the truth itself. Would it not be reasonable to say that truth coming from an outside source in such an unusual manner, had to be more believable than the plain ordinary display of truth from God?

“For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen. For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet. And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, Without understanding, covenant breakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.”
Romans 1:18-32

As I understand this act of betrayal, there are three vantage points to be gained. One, the betrayer has in his or her power to manipulate another person with personal gain as the motivator.

Number two, is of the individual which is victim of betrayal was betrayed because it was the only recourse that could end the path of destruction they were so adamant to pursue. The fact remains that anyone that is apprehended and stopped from pursuing their debauchery, wickedness, or self-destruction, deems that they have been betrayed. The individual betrayed cannot see, being blind-sided by their out of control, lusts and desires, that being betrayed was the only act that could actually save them. This scenario is evident today just by focusing on the prison system, and mental hospitals around the country. When an individual is blinded by his or her own demon of demise, sometimes, it takes someone else to assume responsibility out of love or respect for the individual in peril. Perhaps it is a spouse, mother, father, or even their own children, that take the initiative and turn them in to certain authorities that would benefit their recovery process. One would only hope that their act of betrayal, in reality, an act of mercy, would benefit an individual and that some day that person incarcerated would come to their senses and understand that this was the only way if they were to survive.

Looking at this subject of betrayal from a different perspective, love its self, can be a motivator of betrayal. You might ask, how in the world could anyone betray someone they loved? I believe if someone you loved and cared for was in the process of breaking the law, or ignoring their responsibilities to their spouses and cheating on them with some other extra-marital relationship, I feel this type of action would warrant the act of betrayal. I know from personal experience that when faced with the possibilities of betrayal, one would hopefully think about their actions more carefully and choose a better path to pursue. To their advantage, make an about face maneuver. Sometimes, with just the threat of being betrayed, one will change course and the disastrous possibilities will be thwarted. The extreme side of this is when the threat of betrayal is ignored and one continues down the path of destruction. The other party involved has no other recourse but to follow thru with the plan of action if their intended is determined to self-destruct. They are more than willing to carry out this plan of action knowing all along the repercussions of their actions. Desperate times no doubt calls for desperate measures.

Falsehood Number Five

My wife and I have the privilege to minister to many people from many walks of life. There is not a day that goes by that one of us, if not both of us are in a position to counsel and console individuals that come to us via the internet e-mail, phone call, mail, or in person. One day my wife received an e-mail from another preacher’s wife who opened up to us with the disturbing news that her husband was preoccupied with internet porn to the extent that it was incurring tremendous debt. This distraught woman was desperate enough to divulge her feelings of despair to us and pleaded for prayer and Godly wisdom. We both shared in her pain and anguish when we discovered that this problem had been going on for years. Now it was to the point that this desperate wife was looking at the possibility of leaving this husband/ preacher but was strapped financially and didn’t seem to have any option but to weather this storm. She disclosed that she had already left him once before but reconciled their marriage only to be faced again with this attack from the devil. All along this husband, this pastor, is in a state of denial and attempts to play mind games with her. It is evident this man is a chronic covenant breaker. He makes her out to be the unstable one of the family leaving his wife wallowing in guilt. In light of his past, he had to leave another pastorate in a different state due to the fact that his church assembly picked up on his promiscuous ways of living. As I mentioned afore, this distraught wife had already left him at one time before after discovering an extramarital affair. This unscrupulous pastor pursued courting his wife once again into coming back and he would make things better for them both. Now they have acquired another home in another state and he has presumed with his charade of pasturing a flock that doesn’t have a clue to his past escapades. This debauchery is covered up by his domineering power and outlandish salary while controlling the finances and restraining them from the wife. This unscrupulous behavior has left the wife with little or no options and is trying to raise two sons all along the way thru this muck and mire of one man’s sin. My wife and I have made this situation a matter of prayer and our hearts are engrossed with concern for this vulnerable family. My wife asked me the other night as to what I thought this preacher’s wife should do under these circumstances. As I contemplated on these revealed events, I questioned as to how this distraught wife was praying. There is no doubt this husband/ pastor, doesn’t have a clue about prayer as he demonstrates his ability to pursue his lustful desires. I have gathered thru his wicked life style that he is self-centered, arrogant in his sin, and in a state of denial. I discovered she was asking the Lord how she could come up with a way to leave her husband and still support the children and herself. The Holy Spirit started revealing to me other means that would have a better outcome for them. I simply stated that this wife needed to change the request of her prayers towards God. The truth of it is that man’s ways are not always God’s way of dealing with matters of life. We have to look for wisdom that only comes from God in these times of distress and duress. As I have stated before, ‘desperate times call for desperate measures.’ In making the decision to go about prayer in another direction, we can broaden the playing field and give God more liberty to act for the betterment of all involved. In reality, we are not giving God more choices in which to choose from by trying to attempt to put God into a little box of our making, but disclosing to God through prayer that we have a greater understanding of how and why He works in mysterious ways. When we are too close to the flame, our mind is not aware of all our surroundings but focused on the intense emotional strain we are encountering at the moment. When we loose our focus, we do not have the ability to pray correctly and according to the perfect will of God. It is times like these we need help from another source.

26 “Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. 27And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God.” Romans 8:26, 27

I encouraged my wife to pass along my thoughts and concerns as to how to respond in prayer. I also encouraged my wife to pass along that I would have this pastor’s wife to praise God for His continuing mercy and make sure she has all her sins confessed before a righteous and holy God. She doesn’t want to have anything in the way that would hinder her heart’s desire before the God of the universe. Ask God for wisdom and grace first of all so our eyes will be opened by the Spirit of God to see the whole picture and just not the small place in which we are standing. The Lord just might have us go through this trial of faith a long ways before He intervenes on our behalf. Sometimes, God desires to purge us with fire and cleanse us, way before He moves on the intended. Remember, we are the one that has presented ourselves to the Throne of God, not the enemy we are coming there for. I encouraged her that we must be prepared to make this painful journey with strength, courage, and trust that God knows what He is doing. The Scriptures encourage us to pray for our enemies as to heap coals of fire upon their heads. At this point, this selfish husband/ pastor, is the enemy in the camp. This soul searching will bring about a repentant heart for the one that is praying for wisdom and proves to God that we do not have a vindictive spirit about us.

Trust me when I say, God will search the heart and will know were we truly stand in His light. Instead of asking God to show her the way to escape and bring about shame and disgrace to the church assembly and only to mention the children and herself; I would have this distraught wife to pray and ask God, if it be His will as to remove this backward husband from the scene of life and restore this congregation and family with dignity and tranquility once again. By now you are asking, are you asking God to kill him? Earlier on, it was disclosed to me that it is a reality that this man has suffered a heart-attack some years back and that he still suffers from ill health. Believe me, as I see it, this man is playing with dynamite in attempting to tempt God with this debauchery. It is like he his flaunting insubordination in God’s face and saying, catch me if you can. If, in fact this husband/ pastor truly is a child of God, being taken off the scene is not deemed as unreasonable, for this request would transform him into the presence of Father God and his only regret of not serving God as a good steward. Remember, we have to see things as God sees things thru the big picture and events that transpire thru His providential care of us. We forget that God is on both sides of life and life eternal. The term and state of death has an entirely different meaning to God and it isn’t one that we would so readily understand. Let me put it this way, how can we stand in front of God and be dead as we know it? Understandably, death is a transition from one state of being to another. To be brief, I feel God’s definition of death is an eternal separation from Himself and His Son who is the entire embodiment of all that we can conceive of life. Death equals separation in any instance.

“Verily, verily, I say unto you, if a man keep my saying, he shall never see death. John 8:51

I look at this situation like this, on one hand, if the wife in despair asks God to make a way of escape for her and the children, it is they that will take the blunt end of criticism of society and become a scandal from the church’s point of view with her being the one who left their poor and unknowing pastor and will be forced to live on the system of welfare while waiting for the alimony checks to arrive in the mail. Only to mention the children, who will know that their father still lives and only sees him from time to time with the opportunity to tell the children dirty little secrets about their Mom and try to sway their allegiance. As I have said in the past, this is no way for a child of God to live out the rest of their days in shame and reproach. Presumably, this man started out with good intensions and would never have compromised, but it happened none-the less. Probably because he listened to Satan and allowed himself to be lead down the breadcrumb trail of deceit telling him-self all along the way, I can stop this anytime I get ready. He allowed himself to be taken as the Old Testament prophet Balaam; he became a man of God for hire. Many have fallen to that old trick of Satan, and many more will soon follow.

If the distraught wife asks God to have His way in the matter and deems to take this man off the scene, the family and the universal church will have been saved from shame, disgrace, and social indignation. Let us take a closer look at the advantages, if you will. First of all, the widow of the husband/pastor will be comforted by the church assembly and full compensation will be awarded to her and the children for the rest of their lives, presumably if they stay in good standing with God and this particular church assembly.

Second, the scandalous escapades of the husband/ pastor will be stopped and with his demise, the rumors and potential shame forthcoming will be thwarted for the Church not to endure. For all involved, peace and tranquility will resume once again and these good people can resume their lives, as God would have it to be.

There is one thing we have to examine before we can close this chapter and it is the perfect will of God. What if, God sees fit not to take this husband/pastor off the scene but bring about a work in this man’s life that all can witness too. As we can see, it is easy to ask God for the things we might consider best for us, and what is best for others. But, just what if this is not the intended will of God. We seem to look for the easiest way out of a situation and the path of least resistance. From the scriptures, we can attest that it is the will of God that “all men come to repentance.” Yes, this also includes the saved as well as the un-saved. I, for one, believe prayer changes things and prayer from a contrite spirit will motivate God faster than anything else in the world. God wants to hear from His children and sometimes we can really get to know Him better only through the pains of trial and hardships. God never promised we would have it easy here on earth, but He did promise He would never leave us or forsake us, no matter what. That means He goes with us into the fire and comes with us out of the fire only to be purged, purified, and fit for the Masters ultimate gain. How are we to console others and understand their feelings if we have no experience in the matter? We live and experience for the consolation of others. In time, your turn will come and you will need someone to share your trial of faith too. As for this husband/ pastor and his wife, if she truly trusts God for what is best for her, her home, her children, and the Church, she will ask God for more Grace and wisdom and persevere as a good soldier of the cross. Her rewards will be waiting for her on the other side of Glory with the Father and the Son of God.

I would like to bring this thought to our attention; God is in the business of reconciliation or bringing about change. He has the ability and power to change our minds, our hearts, and our eternal spirit. It is within His realm of power and majesty to turn undesirable situations around for the Glory of God. Remember, Christ Jesus was betrayed and He as a professional can console you if this comes your way. God is in the miracle business and He can make things happen that no doctor or medicine can. Doctor Jesus is always in the office of interceding for you and in time, your prescription will be ready to be administered to you with results in which Father God will be pleased for His Honor and His Glory.

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