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lwpray
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 Re: Katz; Hosea



11.
Israel has rejected the good; the enemy will pursue him (Hosea 8:3).

That is what happens when our sin casts off the covenant-keeping God and He removes His protection and covering; we are open and exposed to the reaction and the counter-response of the enemy in exact proportion to our sin. That has been the history of Israel, and we need to be instructed by it. Do we think ourselves immune, that such things will not come upon us?

They have set up kings, but not by Me; they have appointed princes, but I did not know it (Hosea 8:4a).

They never consulted with God; they never asked Him; they acted on their own initiative. We do not know what it means to consult God. There is such a spirit of presumption in us, in exact proportion to the absence of our knowledge of God, and once the knowledge of God is found, its being found does not guarantee that we will never lose it. In this world, in all that is vile, in every powerful pressure, temptation and force that wants to dishonor and defame God, and mock Him in every perverse way, you can imagine the kinds of things that are directed against us to dull us again to a place of ease and comfort in Zion. It is going to take something severe, something radical for us to maintain the knowledge of God once we have found it, and then to deepen it and grow in that knowledge. Is this foremost in our consideration? Do we feel that we presently have it?


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Lars Widerberg

 2004/3/25 17:18Profile
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 Re: Katz; Hosea



12.
For Israel has forgotten his Maker and built palaces; and Judah has multiplied fortified cities, but I will send a fire on its cities that it may consume its palatial dwellings (Hosea 8:14).

I fully expect to see a mighty coming down in the years ahead; we are going to see great cathedrals and church buildings standing absolutely empty, with whole congregations dissipating away. The world will see the mockery of churches that took million of dollars from God’s people standing as empty houses. We will see the great Christian recreation resorts rusting away and standing like ghost towns as mocking testimonies to the failure of people to take God seriously, turning the faith into an entertainment upon which God shall breathe His fire and bring it down.

Do not rejoice, O Israel, with exultation like the nations! For you have played the harlot, forsaking your God. You have loved harlots’ earnings on every threshing floor.
Threshing floor and wine press will not feed them, and the new wine will fail them (Hosea 9:1–2).

It is happening already. We have become a manipulating people of technique and methodology, and the new wine has failed.


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Lars Widerberg

 2004/3/26 1:26Profile
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 Re: Katz; Hosea



13.
Ephraim is stricken, their root is dried up, they will bear no fruit. Even though they bear children, I will slay the precious ones of their womb (Hosea 9:16).

We can bring forth, but is it His fruit? Is it eternal fruit? Or does it have only the seeming appearance of effectiveness and success? Do we even know the difference, and are we jealous for the fruit that only God can give, rather than what we are able to produce and fabricate because we are skilful and because we have the financial enablement? ‘Fruit’ is not the testimony of our right relationship with God, or the knowledge of Him, or even of His blessedness. His fruit is of another kind; it is fruit of the Spirit, and His Spirit is the spirit of humility and meekness, not arrogance, presumption, pride and a sumptuous lifestyle that contradicts the whole tenor of anything and all that we know about God and about His Church.


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Lars Widerberg

 2004/3/27 8:44Profile
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 Re: Katz; Hosea



14.
Israel is a luxuriant vine; he produces fruit for himself. The more his fruit, the more altars he made; the richer the land, the better he made the sacred pillars (Hosea 10:1).

Are we not guilty of exactly the same practices? Are we not motivated toward religious success, to building programs and every other kind of program to enrich the lives of our congregations and thus make them fruitful ‘for the Kingdom’? Have we ever asked God what His design for the Church is? Have we met His conditions for true ministry to go forth? There are many self-fashioned, self-proclaiming men that bear ministry titles, but what grieves God even more is that the people out there do not even know the difference. They are so easily hoodwinked and impressed. Any glib character, anyone who has facility with the scriptures, makes a show, gives an impression, has been involved with churches, has travelled, is automatically assumed to be a man of God.

So you will again distinguish between the righteous and the wicked, between one who serves God and one who does not serve Him (Malachi 3:18).

The ability to discern the true servants of God is given as the criterion of a people, finally at the end of the age, of whom God says, “And they will be Mine (Mal. 3:17a).” They came to the ability to discern by what took place in verse 16 of that chapter.

Then those who feared the Lord spoke to one another, and the Lord gave attention and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before Him for those who fear the Lord and who esteem His name.

Their speaking to one another was not cheap talk, or small talk, but an examination of our own lives, the condition of the Church, the word of God as we hear it proclaimed. They examined themselves to see if they were in the faith. They feared the Lord and that is why they did it. They were jealous for His name, His honor and His glory.


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Lars Widerberg

 2004/3/28 1:03Profile
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 Re: Katz; Hosea



15.
Sow with a view to righteousness, reap in accordance to kindness; break up your fallow ground, for it is time to seek the Lord until He comes to rain righteousness on you (Hosea 10:12).

It is long past the time to seek the Lord. Have we sought the Lord until He has rained righteousness upon us? Do we have a heart for this kind of sacrificial seeking, to break through the layers of film that stand between Heaven and us?

You have plowed wickedness, you have reaped injustice, you have eaten the fruit of lies. Because you have trusted in your own way, in your numerous warriors (Hosea 10:13).

You were impressed with the mighty men, with the princes, with the hotshots, their systems and their lifestyles. You mourned when they fell because you would have liked to see them continue. You thought that their ministry was appropriate and deserving. You secretly desired such a lifestyle for yourself. God has waited long and He has been silent, but if we allow these judgments that are falling now to pass unnoticed and merely cluck our tongues as if somehow we are not implicated and sharing in that same lifestyle and subscribing to the same values, then God’s judgments have been in vain for us, and we will have to experience them personally, directly and more painfully. It is time to seek the Lord, to know Him.


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Lars Widerberg

 2004/3/28 13:23Profile
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 Re: Katz; Hosea

16. We cannot know Him in a true way and bypass the issues of judgment. We have paid a high price for the loss of the understanding of God, both in judgment and in mercy, in severity and goodness. God’s dealings with Israel, past, present and future are more or less absent from our consideration. We have thus voided the most profound revelation of God given us in Scripture because the greatest provision that God gives the Church is Israel, and His dealings with that people.

If the Holocaust was not just the consequence of the aberration of some crazy man by the name of Hitler, but in fact, the intent of God and the fulfillment of scriptures in Leviticus and Deuteronomy, of a judgment that would come in the Last Days, how much more should we be fearful of the dealings of that God for ourselves? The glib, unctuous and frivolous character of our Christianity has opened the door to deceptions of the most remarkable kind, and it has altogether to do with the absence of the knowledge of God and the fear and the awe of God, that would have been ours if we had been rightly instructed by what God has done to Israel and will yet do, before He restores them in His mercy.

END


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Lars Widerberg

 2004/3/29 2:58Profile
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 Re: Katz; Hosea

Hosea: A Word to the Church
Art Katz

Malachiah: When Art Katz writes a Word to the church we must remember that he is a Jew. The church from the nations is the holy bride of Israel even as Israel is the bride of Yahweh. There is a relationship that is holy and can only be seen and known in holiness.--


The book of Hosea contains the heart cry of God for the apostasy and backslidden condition of His people Israel. My sense is that the Church at large today stands in very close proximity to the condition of Israel when it fell from relationship with their God. One of the marks of that apostasy, both in Israel and the Church, is a spirit and discernment so dulled that we are not even in a position to appreciate our own condition.

Malachiah: Two thousand years ago Israel was awaiting the coming of Messiah. A small remnant was prepared to see and understand. The larger part was not. The Jewish scholars saw the conquering coming but failed to see the suffering one. Such a partial seeing was total blindness. The missed the coming of the Lord though they preached about it. While they looked off to a conquering coming they missed the Present one. This allowed a way for the church to be grafted in. Today the reverse is true. The "church" looks for an open coming of the Lord on the clouds. They look to the great and open victorious coming. And yet as Israel two millennium ago, they only have partial truth and thus total darkness. They fail to see the secret, hidden coming that we are commanded to watch for. Only the watchers can see this coming. This secret coming is a period of time wherein the watchers see but the world cannot. The church that cannot see becomes seven times more demon possessed than Israel was. And thus those that see become the glory upon the remnant of Israel that arises in the coming of the name of Jesus Christ.--


Ironically, in our fallen condition, we purport to celebrate God, and think that we are in a commendable relationship with Him. It is a condition that compels God to send prophets to convey things as He Himself sees them, which is often, if not invariably, different from the way that we see them. Truth is everything as God sees it, and it is often painful to make the adjustment from our seeing to His, but I can tell you, as a descendant of a people who failed to make that adjustment, the consequences for us have been exceedingly tragic.

Malachiah: this is why, o dear brother Art, that you are now called to separated yourself from the harlot "church" into the bride who is the new covenant presence of your Lord.--


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Malachiah

 2004/6/5 21:08Profile
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2. The heart of God is grieved while ours is not. We may be saddened, we may be disappointed, we may be perplexed, but we are not grieved. It is a deep grief that needs to come into us, a grief of the kind that God Himself feels as He looks upon the pathetic state of the Church. The fall of many of its prominent leading celebrities is only the symptom and the statement of a much deeper and extensive ill. In my opinion, our great sickness is due to the lack of the authentic knowledge of God, and if we lack that, then how authentic are we? The scriptures are given for our admonition upon whom the ends of the age have come. God’s intention was that we, as the Church, should be instructed by Israel’s experience, by His dealings with them, especially in the severity of His judgments, which are much harsher for those who are called and appointed to be sons of the Most High.

Malachiah: I believe this is a true confession of brother Art. It is not the confession of all the church though. Brother Art writes of a "we" he is among and sees. That "we" does not grieve over the churches condition but rather is able to use it and move in it and claim a position of "we" in a negative testimony. Again, this is why you are called out of her. Brother Art rightly confesses that the problem is a lack of genuine knowledge of God and thus places a question both on his and the "we' his is among as to how authentic they are. When the authentic grieve they soon find the Word at hand that leads them out of that ungrieving "we". Then blessed are they that mourn for they find the Holy comforter near.--


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Malachiah

 2004/6/6 12:06Profile
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 Re:

3. The Church is at a place very close to experiencing the judgment of God, and if we are clucking our tongues over the fallen state of some of the evangelical and charismatic stars, and think somehow that their condition is unrelated to us, we need to look more closely at ourselves. These fallen stars are the visible symptom, sign and statement of the whole Church of which we, and they, are a part, and whose manner of life and lifestyle we have made possible, and have condoned and would secretly enjoy having for ourselves.

Malachiah: come out of her my people. Stop trying to change her or build her up. O how you need the revelation to overtake you! To see you are in HIM and to see the oneness of the church apart from the unending divisive works and names incorporated into the world.--

The world is absolutely vile and abysmal beyond every description. It is steeped in blood and violence. All of society has had a part in this; it is complicit; it is involved in the evil itself by the very nature of the thing. God commanded His priests to teach the people the difference between the holy and the profane, but if God’s priestly people do not know the difference between the two, then what shall we expect of the world? We need to be reminded that God’s judgments begin in His house before they will begin in the world. In many respects, the world is the statement of the Church’s failure. There has not been an objective standard of truth made visible by God’s people that the world can see; it therefore takes its liberty, for it has nothing with which to align itself and there is very little calling it to accountability.

Malachiah: truly the children of Israel are the priest of the kings of the nations. The great king is hidden in the gentile kings. He awaits the Israel priest to come and sanctify Him there. He awaits them to be distinct from the kings as a priest is. For this Israel must have a circumcised heart! And for this circumcision the church is formed! The church is an experience going on inside the heart of Israel. The church is the living new covenant to Israel. The church is called out from the nations to be a priest to Israel so that Israel can be a priest to the nations. Herein is the blueprint that saves the world. The church brother Art sees and writes of is not priestly to Israel but has gone directly to the kings and is seven times more blind than Israel. Nevertheless, the true church is hidden from the world and line upon line is beginning revealed to the remnant of Israel.--


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Malachiah

 2004/6/6 12:28Profile
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 Re:

4. Listen to the word of the Lord, O sons of Israel, for the Lord has a case against the inhabitants of the land, because there is no faithfulness [truth] or kindness [mercy] or knowledge of God in the land.
There is swearing, deception, murder, stealing, and adultery. They employ violence, so that bloodshed follows bloodshed.
Therefore the land mourns, and everyone who lives in it languishes along with the beasts of the field and the birds of the sky; and also the fish of the sea disappear.
Yet let no one find fault, and let none offer reproof; for your people are like those who contend with the priest.
So you will stumble by day, and the prophet also will stumble with you by night; and I will destroy your mother.
My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I will also reject you from being My priest. Since you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children (Hosea 4:1 – 6).

Malachiah: Amen.--

How is this appropriate to us as the Church? One of the severest pronouncements against Israel, at one of the lowest points of her backslidden history, was that the knowledge of God had been rejected. Nothing will keep us or save us other than the true knowledge of God. God is holy, awesome, fearful and righteous! If there is no knowledge of God, then there is no knowledge of truth or mercy. God is truth and mercy. If we miss Him, then we have missed everything, and we can miss Him even in the very moment we are ostensibly celebrating Him. We can be guilty of the lack of a true knowledge of God while we are invoking His name and singing His praises. We can enjoy everything that we are doing, experiencing the euphoric lift, while that very thing betrays and conceals from us what, in fact, our real condition is.

Malachiah: this is the condition of the "church" that has not the revelation of the UNSPEAKABLE gift of the mystery of the Word in hand. The oracles of living scripture were given to the children of Israel as the advantage of God. Romans 3:2. These oracles are the living scripture as the saints write even as Abraham before the Bible was written. Note Galations 3:8 The scripture annouced the gospel to Abraham. Since the Bible we have was not yet written the scripture that annouced to him had to be that he wrote. What made Israel holy was the Presence of the living Word branching hand to hand. Our real condition is not that which brother Art sees among the "we" he writes of but is that we are In Christ. Here the anointed Word we write teaches us to abide in Him. This gift must be brought back to Israel by the church for the church is the body of Messiah. Blessed be the broken ones that discover their holy hands.--


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Malachiah

 2004/6/6 12:53Profile





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