Thursday, October 28, 2010

A Spectacle Before Spectators

I am digging out another teaching from years ago to post today. I am aware of many precious brothers and sisters who are in the midst of trials. These trials often leave them in perplexity. They may look at their circumstances, observe the criticism from those around them, and wonder how the Father could possibly be glorified.

I have often wondered similar things as the Father has led me to some obedience that was not understood by the world, or a worldly church. God's ways are not man's ways, and He is often most glorified when His saints are the most vilified, rejected, and abased. The greatest glory that has arisen to the Father and the Son came from that dark day when Christ was crucified on Calvary.

I offer this teaching for those sons and daughters who are experiencing shame, reproach, or neglect due to following the course the Father has set before them. May you be strongly encouraged by the God of all comfort as you read.

A Spectacle Before Spectators
Joseph Herrin (1-25-2001)

This article is written for those precious saints of God who have been in trials and fiery furnaces and wilderness places for some time now. I have noted a peculiar thing about some of these people, as I have noted it in my own experience. God has placed many in trials that have drawn a lot of criticism from others. At a time when it would seem that the children of God could use an encouraging word the most, they have received judgment, criticism, and scorn. People have wagged their heads and their tongues as they consider your life and trials.

A large part of what has precipitated this response is that God has required His children, who would hear His voice and respond to it, to do things that don’t make sense in the natural world. God has called some to quit perfectly good jobs and to trust Him for their financial provision. God has placed in their hearts an understanding that they are in a time of transition and He has a new calling for them. But they must first go through a time of cleansing, molding and preparation that only responding to such an illogical request could bring upon them. (I say it is illogical from a worldly perspective, for from a spiritual vantage point there is great precedence and purpose in it.)

Such saints must contend not only with personal doubts and fears about taking such a step, but they are subjected to all the wisdom of the world and of a carnal church that knows next to nothing about hearing God’s voice and responding in obedience; responding regardless of what is in the cup God would have them to drink from. God has required some of His children to trust Him for physical healing in some matter, either in their own life or in the life of another. I am speaking here of those who have received a clear word from God on a matter, not those who have been indoctrinated with doctrines and principles of healing who are attempting to step out and apply things they have learned from men. Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word (rhema - spoken word) of God. I am speaking here of those who know they have received a word from God to trust Him and wait upon Him in some matter of healing.

As many of these have waited upon God they have experienced setbacks and discouragements as they have waited and waited and have not yet seen God’s promised deliverance and healing. The voice of the world tells them they are fools to expect God to heal them. The world says, “God has given us the medical profession in these modern days. This is the way in which God will heal. You are a fool to not lean upon the arm of man, trusting instead to the unseen arm of God.” As you have tarried, waiting, you have endured much criticism and the judgments of those who feel you are deluded. Why? Why would God subject you to this?

For some of you God has given a promise of a restored relationship. It may be a spouse or a child or some other relation. Some have children who have become rebellious and have embraced the wickedness of the world, yet God has spoken to you that He has some great purpose for this one. Against all appearances you have been holding to that which God has revealed to you. Though the child continues to act shamefully and shows little fear of God in their life, you hold onto the promise and continue to remind the child of this promise as well.

There are many other things that God is using for the personal crucible of refining and testing of His children in this hour. As a firstfruits company many are fulfilling the words recorded in Daniel.

    Daniel 12:9-10
    9    And he said, "Go your way, Daniel, for these words are concealed and sealed up until the end time.
    10    "Many will be purged, purified and refined; but the wicked will act wickedly, and none of the wicked will understand, but those who have insight will understand.

Many are being purged, purified, and refined in this hour and, as prophesied, none of the wicked understand. Those who are undergoing this purifying process appear as a spectacle to those who are not being purified, those who are unwilling to submit to the process, and those who have no knowledge of God.

As I have watched this I have had a thought gnawing at the back of my mind. “God, why would You ask me, or my brothers and sisters who love You so dearly, to go through a trial that the world and the apostate church does not understand? In what way are You glorified in this trial? Certainly it does not seem that You are glorified before men, for all men are condemning and criticizing and misunderstanding Your remnant in this hour.”

I have been reminded by well meaning saints that our lives are to glorify God and to be a light and a testimony before men. They observe the trials that I have endured and they ask, “In what way is God being glorified? In what way is your life a light before man? If people are criticizing and scorning your walk then are you not rather turning men away from God?” These are questions that bear answering.

As I have spent time before the Father with these questions one of the things I received from God was an assurance that the applause of the world does not equate with glory being given to God. God is not glorified when all men speak well of us. The words of Jesus came clearly to me.

    Luke 6:26
    "Woe to you when all men speak well of you, for in the same way their fathers used to treat the false prophets.

One might well ask, “If they spoke well of the false prophets, how did they speak of the true prophets?” It doesn’t take much investigation to find out. They were mocked, scorned, ridiculed, judged as being of the devil, put out of the congregation, and even mistreated and many were killed.

    Luke 11:47-51
    47    "Woe to you! For you build the tombs of the prophets, and it was your fathers who killed them.
    48    "Consequently, you are witnesses and approve the deeds of your fathers; because it was they who killed them, and you build their tombs.
    49    "For this reason also the wisdom of God said, 'I will send to them prophets and apostles, and some of them they will kill and some they will persecute,
    50    in order that the blood of all the prophets, shed since the foundation of the world, may be charged against this generation,
    51    from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah, who perished between the altar and the house of God; yes, I tell you, it shall be charged against this generation.'

Jesus clearly states here that He will send prophets and apostles to the world, and to those who represent the religious system of the day, and some will be killed and some will be persecuted. The question I have been asked could be asked of them, “How is God glorified if all men are scorning you and judging you to be evil? How are you being a light to the world?”

Before I answer this question I would like to mention that the Son of God, Jesus Christ, was also judged as a transgressor and hung between two thieves. To the religious leaders of the day His offenses were more serious than that of the thieves He was crucified between. They accused Him of one of the greatest of offenses, being a blasphemer against God. They used the word of God to condemn Him and to sentence Him to death. Is not the word being used against many of those today who are seeking to walk faithfully with God, even at great personal cost and loss?

But the question remains, “How is God glorified in all of this if men are reviling, not praising, those who are following Him?” You may have asked the same question. Consider Job. He suffered tremendous things and to his closest friends, who claimed a considerable knowledge of God and his ways, it appeared that Job must certainly be a great sinner to experience all that came against him. They tried to convince Job of his transgression. How was God glorified if those men who observed him did not applaud him, but rather condemned him?

The answer begins to become obvious when we think of Job for we know that there were others observing Job besides mankind. We know that Job was being observed by all of heaven. Both the holy angels and the enemies of God in the heavens were considering Job’s life, his behavior, his words, and his faith.

As I look at the scriptures I see that Job was not an exception. Job was not the only person who had a heavenly audience observing his life. Indeed, all of God’s children are under observation at all times by both the holy angels and the fallen. There is beyond the angels a great cloud of witnesses that are intent upon the lives of God’s saints. I would like to look at some of the scriptures that reveal this observation.

I have long been intrigued by the life of David, this man with a heart after God. One particular comment in the story of his life caused me to pause and consider what was being revealed. It was a comment that was made during the period of David’s greatest failure when he committed adultery and murder. Nathan the prophet was sent to confront David with his sin and the following is revealed.

    II Samuel 12:13-14
    13    Then David said to Nathan, "I have sinned against the LORD." And Nathan said to David, "The LORD also has taken away your sin; you shall not die.
    14    "However, because by this deed you have given occasion to the enemies of the LORD to blaspheme, the child also that is born to you shall surely die."

Did you catch the comment? Nathan said, “by this deed you have given occasion to the enemies of the LORD to blaspheme.” What enemies? Who knew about David’s sin? It is certain that David did not broadcast what he did. Only he, Bathsheba, and Joab knew what he had done. It is fairly certain that neither Bathsheba nor Joab would blab about what had transpired. To David it seemed that his sin was hidden. No one knew about it.

The enemies of God here could not refer to Israel’s natural enemies, the nations that dwelt around them, for they had no way to know of David’s sin. Who did know? Satan knew. Those who followed Satan in rebellion knew. The holy angels also knew.

I believe I have rightly concluded that the enemies of the LORD spoken of by Nathan were those in the spiritual realm. Satan and the angels that rebelled against God were those referred to. In the book of Job we are given this picture.

    Job 1:6-10
    6    Now there was a day when the servants of God came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came among them.
    7    And the LORD said to Satan, "From where do you come?" Then Satan answered the LORD and said, "From roaming about on the earth and walking around on it."
    8    And the LORD said to Satan, "Have you considered My servant Job? For there is no one like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, fearing God and turning away from evil."
    9    Then Satan answered the LORD, "Does Job fear God for nothing?
    10    "Hast Thou not made a hedge about him and his house and all that he has, on every side? Thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land.

A number of things are revealed in this passage. Those in the heavens are attentive to the lives of men. Both the friends and the enemies of God are observing the lives of men. When God asked Satan about Job it was clear that Satan knew Job very well and was aware of the details of his life. It is also interesting to note that men are the subject of discussion between God and the angels, including the fallen angels that are counted as God’s enemies.

Certainly David, like Job, was closely observed by all of heaven. Satan and his followers knew what was going on in David’s life. The sin that David thought was hidden was not hidden from their eyes. This gave them occasion to come before God and to blaspheme. I can imagine some of their accusations.

“You call Yourself a righteous and holy God. How is it then that the man You have anointed as king, the man You have blessed and prospered, how is it that he has both committed adultery with the wife of one of his most faithful servants and then he has murdered this same servant to hide his sin? How is it that he goes unpunished if You are so righteous and holy? Is this an example of a man whom You testify has a heart after You? Will you now reward him in his wickedness? Will You withhold judgment from him? Is this man truly among the most faithful of Your servants? Do his actions represent Your will?”

In this manner the enemies of God were given an occasion to blaspheme due to the sin of David. What I want to point out in this example, is that the lives of the saints of God are always being observed by those in the heavens. Consider the words of Paul.

    I Corinthians 4:9
    For, I think, God has exhibited us apostles last of all, as men condemned to death; because we have become a spectacle to the world, both to angels and to men.

Paul speaks of the apostles as being a spectacle and he even lists the angels before he mentions men. A spectacle is something observed, something watched, inspected, and scrutinized. In the same way our lives are on display in the heavenlies. This truth is revealed in the following scripture.

    I Corinthians 11:10
    Therefore the woman ought to have a symbol of authority on her head, because of the angels.

In this scripture where Paul is teaching on authority and the symbolic use of a headcovering, he states that the reason for a woman wearing a headcovering is for the angels. What? You mean that wearing a headcovering is not for the observation of mankind? This is a marvelous thing. In this scripture there is no denying that we are on display to the heavens. We are even told to do particular things as a testimony and a sign to those heavenly beings that are observing our lives.

Satan’s original sin was rebellion. He uncovered his head before God. He wanted to be equal with God and not subject to God. For his rebellion he was judged and cast out of heaven. The woman by wearing a covering on her head does so as a sign to the angels. To the angels she is testifying, “I am content with the position God has given me in creation. I seek to neither rise above my position, nor to fall below it. I willingly accept and embrace the authorities placed above me and I will remain submitted in the place God has called me to.”

To the fallen angels this is a rebuke and to the holy angels this is the greatest of testimonies. What an awesome revelation. Our lives are always being observed. Our actions, words, and faith are on display in the heavens. This is further revealed in the following verse.

    Hebrews 13:2
    Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by this some have entertained angels without knowing it.

Returning to my original purpose in this article it should be apparent that there is a realm that we rarely consider that is very real indeed. There are observers to our lives beyond those we see with our physical eyes. How does God receive glory from our lives when men speak ill of us and do not understand our walk? The answer should be more evident now. If our disobedience can give an occasion to the enemies of God to blaspheme, then our obedience is occasion for great glory being given to God. When heaven observes mankind, weak as we are, pressing on in obedience to God through trials, tribulations, distresses, uncertainties, fears, and every sort of hindrance, God is greatly glorified. The mouths of God’s enemies are stopped and there is great joy among those who are the friends of God. Peter gives us the following revelation.

    I Peter 2:19-20
    19    For this finds favor, if for the sake of conscience toward God a man bears up under sorrows when suffering unjustly...
    20    But if when you do what is right and suffer for it you patiently endure it, this finds favor with God.

Our lives are being observed by God and by the hosts of heaven. God is honored and we gain favor before Him when we press on faithfully despite persecutions, distresses, fears, and the false judgments of others.

If you have wondered how what you are enduring can bring glory to God, then wonder no longer. The applause or rejection we receive from man does not indicate whether God is glorified. There is an unseen realm where things are being weighed and judged and where we are constantly observed. Our every victory and every failing is seen. Every tear and every moment of rejoicing is remembered. No, what you are walking in may not be understood by those around you, but there are unseen observers and they do understand. The holy hosts of God are rooting for the saints of God. Keep on! Don’t give up now! Your vindication is coming!

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Mailing Address:
Joseph Herrin
P.O. Box 804
Montezuma, GA 31063

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

A Church Without Ears

I have been spending some time converting some of my older writings to PDF format for the re-designed Heart4God website which is getting closer to completion. I want to share here a writings I posted nine years ago this month. It relates a dream I had.

I do not often remember dreaming, so this was an unusual event for me. As I read over this writing I was impressed by what was shared, as more recent events have confirmed aspects of what was related. A couple years ago Joe Boes, a brother from Atlanta, and I traveled to North Georgia to hear a prophet speak. Afterwards, this man shared some personal words of knowledge for those gathered. I was one of the last he spoke to. He did not know me, but testified that God had called me to be a teacher, and I would be teaching with fire.

In the dream which is related, there is a tongue of fire that appears above my head. Yet, this event does not occur until after great darkness descends upon the land. Only when there is darkness do the people lay aside their frivolity and vain pursuits and manifest any interest in hearing the things of God.

I had forgotten this writing, and the dream sounds like something being related by another person, as I now have no memory of it. Yet, in reading of it, I am encouraged that a day is near when the people of God will truly hunger and thirst for words of truth. Though it will only be a remnant, Yahweh will raise up a people to be a praise unto Him in the earth.

I will share this earlier writing here. Afterward I have included some links to recent videos by Andrew Strom. They are very revelatory of the state of a large segment of the church today that is focused upon signs and wonders. One must question how such people as those depicted in the videos can possibly be spared being swept away by the massive deception that is coming in a time of gross darkness. Many are being told by ministers to not question strange manifestations, or equally bizarre doctrines. Those who no longer examine all things carefully will fall prey to deceiving spirits.

May you be blessed with peace and understanding in these days.

A Church Without Ears
Joseph Herrin (10-20-01)

It is rare that I have dreams that I remember, but last night I had such a dream. It was a very frustrating dream, but as I think on it the dream mirrors the experience I have had in attempting to proclaim the truths of God to the church. Let me relate the dream to you here.

The dream began as I found myself in a home group setting. I was in the home of some people we knew from the last church in which I ministered. I had my Bible and a little note pad with writing on it, and I was prepared to proclaim the word of God to the group assembled there. It was evident that the group also knew that I was the one to bring the message that evening.

As sometimes occurred during these home groups, there was much activity, with people talking, people getting up to go to another room, the phone ringing, etc.. I was smoldering inside with a desire to deliver the word that was within me, but the people were not showing any eagerness to hear the word. The lady in whose house we were meeting got up at one point to go wash a load of clothes, and I remember that as she did this that everyone else went to go do things as well, and I was left alone in the room.

I was frustrated by this, but soon everyone made their way back into the room. The room was noisy with conversation and the phone ringing, and this prevented any teaching from going on. Eventually someone suggested that we go outside where there was a better environment for teaching. At this suggestion, everyone in the room got up and went outside.

I remember that outside there was a large parking lot such as one would find at a shopping center. The people walked across this lot and gathered at a location, but it was noisy there as well. I remember that there were people out in the parking lot working on vehicles. There was a large travel trailer that was jacked up on one side as some people were changing the wheel. After milling around for a time, someone suggested that we move somewhere else.

Finally we gathered at another spot, and there were many more people present than at the first. I began to try to speak forth the word, but there were many conversations going on, and since I was on the same level as everyone else, many could not hear me, or even see where I was at. In the dream there was a table present, so I climbed up on the table to get everyone’s attention and I began to call out for people to look at me and listen.

I began to speak forth the message the Father had given to me, but I had not gotten far into it when I noticed a young woman going around from person to person at one end of those gathered. She was telling them something that she would like them to do. It was some type of activity that she wanted them to participate in, and she was distracting the attention of everyone around her, making it impossible for me to continue speaking. I asked her to stop what she was doing and to sit down. I remember that my request was delivered to her very bluntly, but she complied and sat down.

As I began to speak again another interruption occurred, and at this I began to proclaim a different message focused on making known to the people that all of their activities were displeasing to the Father. I began to tell them the message that is recorded in the book I recently wrote, entitled “Sabbath.” I began to tell them how their activities were originating in their own souls and not in the spirit and how this would bring the judgment of God. Finally I declared, “You people will not desire to receive light until you have been surrounded by gross darkness.”

I then prayed for darkness to fall on the people, and darkness did come. It was a darkness so thick that it could be felt and no one there dared move. At this point a tongue of flame appeared over my head and all eyes were drawn to the light that it produced. The attention of everyone was toward the tongue of flame. Then the dream ended.

It is not difficult to perceive the message in this dream. From my own perspective, it was a very frustrating dream. I wanted to deliver the message that the Father had given to me, but no one desired to hear it. The people had no real hunger to hear the word of God. They were distracted by this thing and that. They preferred their own activities.

As a minister in the church, my experience has paralleled this dream in many ways. In home groups I often found that it was with great difficulty that people were brought to the place of seeking the Father’s desire for them during that time. In more than one home the telephone sat in the middle of the room we were gathered in, and no matter what was going on, when the phone rang it would be answered and the host couple would speak on the phone disrupting the flow of what was transpiring.

On one occasion, a getaway was planned for the ministers and their wives. It was announced by the head pastor that we would go up to a house in the mountains and we would spend time seeking the Father in prayer, and discussing the direction of the church. I was the most junior minister present, having only been ordained that year, so I waited for others to take the lead in this time. We had four or five days at this house in the mountains.

The first day the ministers just sat around and talked, and I was surprised to find when we got to this house that there was a large television set up in the main room and it was on most of the time. The ministers would watch sports, or the news, or some old movie, and I waited and waited for the prayer time and the seeking of the mind of God that had been announced.

On another day while there a driving trip was planned. The scenery in the mountains was beautiful, but I was desirous of praying together as ministers and seeking God’s instruction. Instead many stops were made at little antique shops and roadside sites. Another day was spent in mindless activity and driving to a nearby town to eat together in a restaurant.

On the morning of our last day we still had not prayed together or discussed anything about the church. I spoke up and shared my disappointment with the other ministers and I was met with reproach, but they agreed to spend the time that morning doing what had been announced as our goal for being there. However, our time was almost up, and we had only a couple of hours and we had to leave the house and return home.

On many occasions during my tenure at that body, when the word of God was burning inside me, I found that the other ministers and the congregation had little interest in the message. This was a body that was viewed as very progressive and that was moving in renewal. The gifts of the Spirit were welcome, but the burning truths of God found little welcome there.

For a year and a half now I have been outside of the organized church. I have visited another church with some friends, but from the very first meeting it was obvious that the truths of God were not welcome there. A message of prosperity was being taught and the focus of the preaching was upon building the church organization and swelling the numbers in attendance.

I see no desire in the organized church to hear the messages that the Father would proclaim to them in this hour. There is still no room in the inn. The Savior still has no place to lay His head (His mind is not sought, and His message is not received.) As it was in my dream, I believe that the church will not begin to seek the truth and the light until they find themselves immersed in gross darkness, a darkness so thick that it can be felt. Only in their utter desperation will they begin to seek a message of truth and light.

This is a frustrating time for those ministers of God who have a burning inside of them to speak forth the message Yahweh has given to them. The church does not have ears to hear. As long as things are fine, or even tolerable, in their lives they will not seek a word of truth. They are content to know material blessing and they equate this with spiritual success. Oh church of Laodicea, you say, ‘“I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing," and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked.’ You have neither eyes to see, nor ears to hear.

If the hearts of those who would speak forth a message of truth and light are so frustrated in this hour, then what is the emotion of the One who is the source of the message? Is He not frustrated as well? Will He not judge His household soon and teach them to desire truth and light?

I believe the message of my dream to be that only when the church finds itself surrounded by gross darkness will she begin to seek the light. The darkness is coming swiftly. Do not pray for a delay of darkness. To do so is to pray for a delay in repentance coming to a church that loves not the truth.


Kundalini Warning  Part 1


Kundalini Warning Part 2


Kundalini Warning - Part 3


Heart4God Website:  

Parables Blog:  

Mailing Address:
Joseph Herrin
P.O. Box 804
Montezuma, GA 31063

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Come and Dine

We have had a re-emergence of summer weather here in Georgia the past couple days. There were thunder storms yesterday morning, with heavy rains at times. Working in the bus, I had to hook up a light as the overcast skies made it too dark to see what I was doing.

The task before me was to install the dining room table and benches. The benches had to be cut out to fit over a heater vent that ran down the wall. Due to cutting off the corner of the bench, I also had to put in bracing to support the side that had been cut.

Some days, it takes a great force of will to get started. The inside of the bus was very humid, and all work seemed to take extra effort. I had to keep the vision before me of seeing the benches and dining table installed in order to keep moving. Due to the rains, I had to do all my wood cutting inside the bus. I try to avoid doing this in order to keep down the amount of sawdust inside.

I had to purchase some screws and anchors to attach the table legs to the floor. I am drilling through steel plate, and ended up breaking two drill bits. Finally, the work was completed, and my clothes were wringing wet as I had been working in sauna like conditions all day.


The dining table lowers to make a child's bed. It is only 5'5" in length, so an adult would have to curl up to sleep there. I also added a hinged seat under the cushions so the bench area can be fully utilized for storage.

Today was another slog as the morning started out exceptionally humid. The rains the previous day had left everything dripping, and the temperature was forecast to reach 90 degrees. Even after opening many of the windows, I was soon dripping wet from perspiration. One symptom of the hereditary bone disease Osteogenesis Imperfecta which I was born with, is profuse sweating. My sweat glands were working overtime the past couple days.

There are times when I find that I must simply set my mind to work despite the discomfort I am feeling in my body. This morning I had to attach some strips below the windows, pre-drilling all the holes into the metal frame to attach the wooden strips. This would provide a base to attach the wall paneling, and also provide a space to install insulation behind the paneling.

The work was physical as the metal was hard to drill into. I also had to get into some tight positions. Sweat and insulation are a wonderful combination. I had put some latex gloves on (actually nitrile), and soon noticed water running out of the gloves when I held my hands up. I was ready to stop after a short time, but I knew that this would only delay accomplishing this difficult task. By 2 P.M. I had made good progress, and my back was telling me it was time to knock off for the day.

Furring strips mounted and insulation hung along walls.

I Corinthians 15:58
Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord.

There are lessons of perseverance, and endurance to be learned in the work the Father assigns us to do. His grace is sufficient. Let us not grow weary in doing that which He has appointed to us. We will reap in due time if we faint not.

Heart4God Website:  

Parables Blog:  

Mailing Address:
Joseph Herrin
P.O. Box 804
Montezuma, GA 31063

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Ultra Pure

Joseph Herrin (10-25-2010)

Luke 12:49-50
“I have come to cast fire upon the earth; and how I wish it were already kindled!”

The Greek word for “fire” is “pur.” It is the same root word from which we derive our English words pyre and pure. There are also associated words such as pyrotechnic, purify, purge, etc.. Yahweh, in His role as Creator, has established an indelible link between fire and purity in the midst of all He has made. On this terrestrial sphere, the surest way to purify most things is to subject them to the presence of fire.

The same is true about mankind. It was surely man that Christ had in mind when He uttered those words found at the beginning of this post. Man’s flesh was formed of the dust of the earth, and Christ has come to cast fire upon the earth. It is by experiencing fiery trials that we are made pure.

I Peter 4:12-14
Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you, which comes upon you for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you; but to the degree that you share the sufferings of Christ, keep on rejoicing; so that also at the revelation of His glory, you may rejoice with exultation.

I Peter 1:6-7
In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials, that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Yahshua Christ...

Most Christians are aware that there are especially severe trials prophesied for the end of the church age. As the woman (church) brings forth mature sons, she must experience birth pangs. The entire creation will also partake of these birth pangs, with the goal of bringing forth full stature sons in the image of God.

Romans 8:18-22
For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not of its own will, but because of Him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now.

Last year the Father directed me to purchase a school bus that had at some time been owned by a church. The bus is highly symbolic, Body by Carpenter, and speaks of that work the Father will perform in this last hour to purify a bride for His Son’s return. The only remaining symbol indicating that the bus had once been used by a church is found on the side.

Note the cross and the flame on the side of the bus. This symbol is used by the Methodist Church.

UMC Logo

Although it certainly symbolizes something else to a church that has rejected the cross that Christ said every disciple must bear, the symbol of the cross and the flame are very relevant to all who would be Christ’s disciples. There is an afflicted path that leads to life, and few there are who find it. This path has been described by Christ and His apostles through the imagery of bearing a cross, and fire.

It is unpopular among Christians today to speak of suffering as the means by which Yahweh would purge, purify and refine every son. The apostle Paul testified that our heavenly Father will scourge every son whom He receives. If these sorrowful and painful experiences are not coming our way from the Father’s hand, then we are not sons (Hebrews 12). The church has forsaken the message that it is appointed to them, not only to believe in Christ, but also to suffer for His sake.

Philippians 1:29-30
For to you it has been granted for Christ's sake, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake, experiencing the same conflict which you saw in me, and now hear to be in me.

Many who read this blog are familiar with my testimony. The Father has called me to be a pioneer and an explorer, going down this path of loss, sorrow, and suffering before the majority of saints in my generation. In 1999 I accepted the call of the Father to follow wherever He would lead. The path He appointed to me included rejection by fellow ministers and saints. I was put out of the church I was a minister in, and years later was told at another body that I could not teach or even take communion with them.

Among my extended family, I became a pariah. Surrender to the will of the Father, particularly when it leads to sorrow, pain, and difficulties, is rejected as sound doctrine among both those in and out of the church today. Yet, there is no doctrine that is more sound than the preaching of the cross. Tragically, the church accepts that Christ had to suffer while rejecting the concomitant truth that they too must suffer to be His disciple. When they reject this truth, they also reject those who are walking in truth.

Christ was not speaking idle words when He told those who were gathering around them that they could not be His disciple unless they hated father, mother, wife, children, brothers, sisters, and even their own life. There has always been only one method by which Yahweh purifies His sons and transforms carnal creatures into spiritual. It is through suffering.

The church today has adopted a theology that declares that all is accomplished by belief. The focus is upon thinking certain things about God and His Son. It is true that these things are important, but they are incomplete apart from a surrendered life. The Son of God was perfected by suffering, and so are all sons of God.

Hebrews 5:8-9
Although He was a Son, He learned obedience from the things which He suffered. And having been made perfect...

Hebrews 2:10
For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things, and through whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to perfect the author of their salvation through sufferings.

I Peter 2:21
For you have been called for this purpose, since Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example for you to follow in His steps

This last verse is ignored everywhere by the church today. Believing things about the Christ is one thing. Even the demons believed, and they confessed that Yahshua was the Son of God. What, if anything, are the majority of Christians doing that is any different than that which the unclean spirits did?

Luke 4:41
And demons also were coming out of many, crying out and saying, "You are the Son of God!" And rebuking them, He would not allow them to speak, because they knew Him to be the Christ.

What the demons were not doing is the same thing the majority of professing Christians are not doing today. They did not submit their lives to be ruled by the Son of God.

Luke 6:46
"And why do you call Me, 'Lord, Lord,' and do not do what I say?”

And what is it that Christ said? Matthew, Mark and Luke all tell us.

Matthew 16:24-25
“If anyone wishes to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever wishes to save his life shall lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake shall find it.”

Mark 8:34-35
"If anyone wishes to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever wishes to save his life shall lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel's shall save it.”

Luke 9:23-24
"If anyone wishes to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whoever wishes to save his life shall lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake, he is the one who will save it.”

Thus, by the mouths of two of three witnesses, this testimony has been established. Yet, this message is rejected by the church today. They proclaim a message of Christian belief separated from the same radical obedience manifested by the Son of God.

People of God, my experiences of the past eleven years have been painful, but they have been profitable. I no longer have my own home and furnishings. I have become a stranger to my extended family, and my own wife and son have departed from me. The Father has preserved only one family member, my daughter Kristin, with whom I am in fellowship. The reason for this is obvious. She too has accepted the message of the cross, and of a life surrendered to be lived for the will and pleasure of Yahweh.

The experiences of the past eleven years have included a heart attack as discipline for my uncontrolled appetite for various foods that please my flesh. It has included periods of homelessness, and three years spent at an inner city Rescue Mission. These experiences have even included time spent in jail for obedience to the Son of God.

I am fully persuaded that none of these experiences would be uncommon among Christians in Western nations today if the church was embracing the cross. It is only by rejecting the cross, by refusing to follow Christ wherever He would lead, and to do whatever He would require of them, that Christians are able to maintain such comfortable lives of ease.

Christ, however, is not coming back for a sensual, unwashed, sin stained, and immature body. He is coming back for those who have made themselves ready. He is coming back for a bride who has been washed through the fire and has come forth pure.

The past few days I spent time building beds and shelves in the bus the Father has called me to convert into a fit habitation.

Beds in the Bus

The bed frames are seen in the picture above. The area above the beds will be used for storage. There will be a curtain suspended from under the shelf along the edge of the bed near the aisle to provide privacy. Paneling will be on either end. There will be a wall and doorway on the side of the beds closest to the camera to separate the bedroom from the rest of the living space. I also left enough room between the beds and the bathroom for storage. The space will easily accommodate several of the standard size rubber storage containers on either side.

The beds were placed in this location due to the wheel wells, which can be seen under the beds. You may notice that the wood used for the beds is stained. I was able to use some lumber stored under the edge of a shed that randy Simmons had collected about ten years ago when working on a construction job. Much of the wood in the stack has been eaten up by termites, and some has water damage, or stains, but I was able to find suitable solid lumber among it for this project.

When I went to pick out a paint to be used on the beds, I was drawn to a paint made by Behr that is called Ultra Pure White. How does one become Ultra Pure? Only by being subjected to the fire.

Beds Painted in Ultra Pure White

The paint I selected was both a primer and a painter. It was also the most expensive paint I looked at, being about $36 for a gallon. It required two coats to seal in and cover the stains in the wood. This too is a parable. The Father is able to take men and women whose lives are soiled by the filth of sin and this world, and to make them come forth in purity. There is a cost to obtaining this righteousness. It is not obtained simply by confession and belief in a set of doctrines. It is acquired through affliction.

Revelation 7:13-17
And one of the elders answered, saying to me, "These who are clothed in the white robes, who are they, and from where have they come?" And I said to him, "My lord, you know." And he said to me, "These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. For this reason, they are before the throne of God; and they serve Him day and night in His temple; and He who sits on the throne shall spread His tabernacle over them. They shall hunger no more, neither thirst anymore; neither shall the sun beat down on them, nor any heat; for the Lamb in the center of the throne shall be their shepherd, and shall guide them to springs of the water of life; and God shall wipe every tear from their eyes."

There is a cross and a fiery path set before all who would be disciples of Christ. The first things (Revelation 21:4) must be experienced in order to attain to the joy unspeakable that is soon to be seen. Let us also set our eyes upon the joy before us, that we might endure the cross.

May you be blessed with peace and understanding in these days.

End Note: To be apprised of what is happening in America, an insightful perspective can be found in this six minute video by a retired Lt. General in the U.S. military.

Heart4God Website:  

Parables Blog:

Mailing Address:
Joseph Herrin
P.O. Box 804
Montezuma, GA 31063

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Ark - Yahweh Provides

Joseph Herrin (10-20-2010)

Philippians 4:19
And my God shall supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Yahshua.

When Yahweh calls us to a work, He will supply everything necessary to complete that work. What He is looking for in the hearts of His sons is obedience, a willingness to follow where He leads and to do what He asks.

Oftentimes the Father will call His sons to a work they are not capable of fulfilling in their own strength. They have neither the wisdom, the resources, or the skills to perform the work. Let that not these deficiencies discourage any from embracing the work the Father sets before them. Where He calls, He will make a way.

When Yahweh called Noah to build an ark, He did not appoint a man with experience as a shipwright. Yahweh provided the plans, the instruction, and the strength, for Noah and his sons to perform that to which they were called.

Genesis 6:14-15
Make for yourself an ark of gopher wood; you shall make the ark with rooms, and shall cover it inside and out with pitch. And this is how you shall make it...

Yahweh was with Noah every step of the way. We read that when the ark was finished that Yahweh filled it with all the animals. When Noah and his family had entered the ark, the Father performed the last work. He shut the door, sealing them in against the storm of judgment to ensue.

Genesis 7:16
And they that entered, male and female of all flesh, went in as God had commanded Noah; and the Lord shut him in and closed the door round about him.
[Amplified Bible]

Although my own task is not as great as that of Noah, the Father’s grace is just as abundant. He has gone before me, leading me each step of the way. Last year He directed me to purchase a bus, and recently He directed me to convert it to a fit habitation. I have previously shared how He has marvelously provided by leading a brother in Tennessee (the Volunteer State) to give freely the major components I will need to equip the bus.

Recently I began work hanging the waste holding tanks under the bus. These tanks were very long, a little of seven feet in length. They fit as if they had been custom made for the bus. When I lifted them in place beneath the bus frame they were such a perfect fit that they held themselves suspended in place while I was able to strap then in place.

Gray Water and Black Water Holding Tanks Strapped to Undercarriage

The tanks had holes pre-cut on the top of them for the toilet, sink and shower to drain into them. I needed to mount the bathroom fixtures over the holes, using the same floor layout as the RV from which the parts were taken. I could hardly have asked for a better layout, as the shower fit perfectly in the back corner of the bus, and the toilet was positioned nearby, with adequate room to move about.

Bathroom Fixtures in Place

I had to make some modifications, but God sent everything I needed, including the know-how, to get the job done. The shower was not directly over the holding tank, so I had to route the plumbing beneath the bus from the bottom of the shower to the holding tank inlet. One of Mr. Stanfield’s sons was at his house that day, and he suggested that an old radiator hose would work great to form the curves and angles to get the plumbing routed properly. Mr. Stanfield said that he had an old radiator hose in his shed, and upon looking at it we found that it was the exact diameter needed. Both ends of the hose were different diameters, and one end fit perfectly to the shower while the other end fit perfectly to the pvc pipe I had salvaged from the RV. Mr. Stanfield even had hose clamps in his workshop that were the right size to connect the hose and pipes.

Plumbing Using Radiator Hose

Having positioned the fixtures in the bathroom at the rear of the bus, I had to determine where to put the wall and the door for entry to the bathroom. I had salvaged the bathroom door from the RV in Tennessee, and stood it up in the center of the bus. Its height was perfect.

Bathroom Door Positioned

Having put the door there, I asked Mr. Stanfield for his advice on framing the wall. With a curved ceiling, it would require some unconventional framing. Mr. Stanfield has been used of the Father to help build several churches in his life, and has also volunteered his services after his retirement in helping others with their carpentry needs. He was able to advise me and the work went remarkably well.

Mr. Stanfield’s son Alan had even left some salvaged 2 x 4 studs under the bus. After I pulled all the nails out of them, and ripped them in two, I was able to use them as 2 x 2 framing. I attached the studs to the floor with bolts, and to the walls and roof with angle brackets.

Bathroom Wall Framed

I won’t install the paneling over the frame until I am finished with all the plumbing and wiring.

The bedroom will be in front of the bathroom wall, and then the living area, kitchen, and dining area in the forward area behind the driver’s seat. This is a change from my original floor layout, being necessitated by the components I have received. The parts are dictating the floor layout to a great extent.

Next up is the task of building beds, positioning the kitchen sink, then mounting the potable water tank and hooking up the water lines to sink, toilet and shower. I have never done plumbing before, but I am confident that the Father will continue to lead and provide all that is necessary to carry out this labor.

Addendum: Following is a response I received from a sister in Christ regarding the recent posts on Jane Leade. I felt that she expressed things very well and wanted to share things with my readers.


Your writing on women in the church and your response to the young lady who was very upset at the governmental order as it should be understood, was very enlightening and refreshing. The Holy Spirit at this time is trying to reach the rebellious women who have allowed their souls to rule. There is chaos where El-Shaddai's Governmental order is not followed. I hear from the Lord and my relationship is most strong when I allow The Holy Spirit to guide my words and my actions in patience and humility. Yes the female soul wants badly to sit beside and be equal to men. She wants to count. We do count, in a most profound way. Our actions as humble, quiet but contributing women must be in submission in all things. To give you an example...

Many times in my walk, I have come across a man or men who had a skewed interpretation of a particular verse or concept. I knew the truth, but asked The Holy Spirit to guide my words to correct the error. The Holy Spirit shut my mouth! He responded to me in all Love, "If you correct him, you will sin against me! I am capable of correcting his errors, am I not?"

This most valuable lesson of the One who sits as Head of all things is precious to me! I admit, at first it did not make sense to me, because my soul was trying to exercise its own will. Women want a "voice." It is the way of the female soul. It will always be as such. We as women must understand that El-Shaddai in His Wisdom is not saying women do not count as much as men. He is stating, "All things in their proper order."

It does not matter if a woman is correct and a man is in error. The woman should not seek to correct the error, when The Holy Spirit is capable fully of doing His job. The woman in the Body of Christ has plenty of important and wonderful jobs to do. There are many who are taught just by watching how a woman handles herself in everyday stressful situations. A woman can, as you stated prophesy and give testimony that is not in usurpation of her governmental placement. El-Shaddai does not state anywhere in Scripture, or through Paul or the other writers, that women are less important to Him. On the contrary...

The adversary wants women to be in rebellion... We should always be on our guard concerning this.

Thank you for being ever vigilant for The Body of Christ! Love from Dallas, Kelly Herman

Following are some news links of note that readers have shared with me. Due to my current obligations I do not have time to comment on them, but there are insights to be gleaned from them.

May you be blessed with peace and understanding in these days.

Heart4God Website:  

Parables Blog:  

Mailing Address:
Joseph Herrin
P.O. Box 804
Montezuma, GA 31063

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Shut the Door - Keep Out the Devil

Joseph Herrin (10-17-2010)

There is a song whose words have been running through my mind in recent days as I have returned to working on the bus. The song contains the words that make up the title of this post.

Shut the door,
Keep out the devil.
Shut the door,
Keep the devil in the night.
Shut the door,
Keep out the devil.
Everything is gonna be alright.

It seemed fitting in returning to work on the bus to begin by replacing the door at the front. The bus was equipped with the old fashioned split, swinging door that is typical on school buses of that time.

Mr. Stanfield Standing by Bus Door

That is Randy Simmon’s grandfather, Mr. Stanfield, standing by the bus. It is parked on his property while I work on it. He has very good carpenter skills, and has already been much help working on the bus as he helped me frame in the door.

Below is a picture of the mechanism that operated the old door.

Bus and Luke

Luke is Randy’s dog. He loves to ride, and will get in the driver’s seat if he has a chance. Perhaps this is a prophetic testimony, for the Beast nature has been driving the church for a long time.

This type of door could not be secured from the outside. To really get it to latch firmly, the lever inside had to be moved all the way over toward the driver’s seat. This resulted in the door always being slightly ajar, and I suspect this is how the serpent entered the bus. If you missed the post, I found a snake skin inside the bus recently, and another underneath it.

Snake Skins

The bus is symbolic of the body of Christ, which we call the church. The bus was manufactured by Carpenter Body Company. In looking up the history of this company I found that it was established in 1919, selling its first buses in 1923. It was closed by its parent company Spartan Motors in 2001. An interesting fact is that the company’s main manufacturing plant in Mitchell, Indiana was destroyed by a fire in 1956. It was rebuilt in 89 days with the help of employees, many of whom worked without pay until the company could later compensate them. This strikes me as a parable.

The church also must be cleansed by fire. Those who labor to build her up will not receive their compensation in this age, but in the ages to come.

In 1991, Carpenter purchased the tooling and product rights of Crown Coach. In doing so it gained the right to use the Crown name.

Note that this right was acquired in 1991. Psalm 91 speaks of the righteous passing through many trials, while being protected by Yahweh. It is as we submit to the fiery trials of the cross that we are prepared to rule and reign with Christ.

Revelation 2:10
“Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to cast some of you into prison, that you may be tested, and you will have tribulation ten days. Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life.”

It strikes me as significant that the Carpenter Body Company was founded in 1919. E.W. Bullinger speaks of the significance of the number 19.

It is a combination of 10 and 9, and would denote the perfection of Divine order connected with judgment.

This seems especially applicable at this hour when the Spirit is indicating that judgment is to befall the nations. The apostles testified the following regarding judgment.

I Peter 4:17-19
For it is time for judgment to begin with the household of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God? And if it is with difficulty that the righteous is saved , what will become of the godless man and the sinner? Therefore, let those also who suffer according to the will of God entrust their souls to a faithful Creator in doing what is right.

The Father has been speaking of this bus, and other people’s motorhomes and travel trailers, with the imagery of an ark. The ark was a vessel prepared for a time of judgment. The Spirit expressly testifies that judgment is near at hand, even at the door.

I find it significant that in working on this bus that the first thing I had to do was strip it of all that was in it. In the Old Testament we read of the Temple of Yahweh having fallen into decay and disrepair. When a restoration was undertaken, the Priests were commanded to begin by removing everything that was unclean and abominable. As I stripped the inside of the bus I was able to discover the snake skin that revealed the presence of a serpent that had been dwelling there.

It seemed appropriate to me to focus at this time on replacing the door, through which the serpent had most likely entered. Following are a series of pictures denoting progress on installing the door.

Door Removed

Door Work Progressing

New Door Installed

Heart4God Website:  

Parables Blog:  

Mailing Address:
Joseph Herrin
P.O. Box 804
Montezuma, GA 31063

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Jane Leade - Related Subjects

Joseph Herrin (10-16-2010)

Many e-mails have been coming in regarding the recent posts on Jane Leade. They have expressed a wide range of opinions, for gracious and thankful support, to strong objection. I will share a couple of these as I have found that these dialogs have been found to be very valuable to the saints. Indeed, some have told me that they enjoy and benefit from these comments and answers more than the articles that precipitate them.

I will continue to withhold the names of those who have written, for it is not the identity that is important, but the thoughts expressed. Regarding the issue of confidentiality, I have given this much consideration, and years ago posted a writing on the topic which can be found here:

I will begin with a comment posted to the ParablesBlog by a sister identifying herself as Turtledove.

Thank you very much for the careful research you have done on Jane Leade and her connection with the Kabbala.

It has been my observation that many have been led into error and unbalance by strong women who assume the teaching role, especially within movements emphasizing the manifestation gifts of the Holy Spirit.

There was a season when I as a woman also usurped the male role, and can attest to being deceived by the angel of light. I have even come across strong women who confess it is wrong to usurp the male role, but who seek subversive ways to sway the convictions of their husbands and other leaders within the Body of Christ.

If only female believers of today could taste the true power of submission, due respect and humble prayer! If a husband is in error, God has given us grace to "win them without a word". Why throw away our most precious role, ordained by God for our fulfillment and the strengthening of the men in our sphere? Even in our zeal to "witness" to unbelieving men, we have often done more harm than good.

Your excellent book, "Sarah's Children", is one I would recommend to any woman seeking God's highest for her life.

Thank you once again for publishing the truth.

[End comment]

The book Sarah’s Children can be read online here:

In contrast to this, I received the following e-mail from another sister in Christ.

Ok, I agree with you to a certain extent. I have an issue with men who say a woman cannot teach or preach the word of God. God has made me a very outspoken mouthpiece for him and I am always preaching and teaching and talking about the Lord one way or another here and there. If that is the case, then I guess a woman has no right to talk at all or be a teacher in classrooms, managers of businesses, etc.. I think this is taken out of context and taken too far. If that is the case I better shut up now and never talk about the Lord again, I mean God forbid if I talk about him proclaiming truths and a man actually hears it. I will then be considered teaching a man and God forbids that? That is crazy and that is not what God is saying at all.

I do not believe a woman can be a Pastor, but when it comes to teaching and preaching, OH YES.. we most certainly can. Neither male or female  in God's eyes... And I know what God has called me to do and all the hell I have had to go through to be what God has called me to be just to this point. If he sends me into churches or wherever, I will speak as the Holy Spirit leads and all men can walk out if they want. No man gets to dictate who God uses to speak through and, in these days, He uses a lot of women cos most of the men are not even around or in churches. God is not to be put in a box because men are insecure about the calling he has on MANY women’s lives to preach and teach the Gospel. I plan to keep on, that is what I have gone through hell to do.
Name Withheld

Following is my response:

Dear Sister,

There is the evidence of much offense in your response. Your words are emotional, rather than manifesting the patience, gentleness, and humility of the Spirit. This should ever be an indication in our lives that our soul has taken up a position on a matter. When we see the soul becoming inflamed out of self-interest, then we should step back and invite the Spirit of Christ to reveal to us the depths of that which we are dealing with.

Please look over your words again and observe the attitude of defiance that is present. This is not the wisdom that comes from above being expressed here. It is the telltale signs of rebellion.

I wish you to know that I am not provoked at your reaction, nor am I angry in pointing out these things to you. I wish that you might walk in truth, and I know that understanding and submitting to divine government is Yahweh's chief instrument to lead each one of us to a cross. It is the work of the cross in our lives that transforms us from carnal beings into spiritual.

Consider this that we are speaking of. If you discerned that it is the Father's will for woman to remain submissive before man, acting and speaking always with reverence and honor, then your own soul would need to sink down to a lower position of humility. When your soul wanted to speak your mind, but the Spirit was testifying that a quiet and chaste response was His will, then you would have to decrease that Christ might increase in you. In this way the Father uses the government He has established to bring all to a personal cross that they might exchange the old Adamic nature with all of its pride and defiance for the meek nature of Christ.

If your soul were not excited in this matter to defend self there would be a greater patience manifested to look into this subject with a desire to know the mind of the Father, no matter the personal cost to self. Patience, gentleness, and meekness would lead you to discover things that anger, defiance and haste would keep you from understanding.

You know what the Spirit testifies concerning what is pleasing to Yahweh in the life of a woman such as yourself.

I Peter 3:3-4
And let not your adornment be external - braiding the hair, and wearing gold jewelry, or putting on dresses; but let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God.

You cannot manifest this gentle and quiet spirit and do what you have proclaimed in your e-mail. You cannot stand in a church and speak whatever is on your mind with an attitude of rebellion toward all those men who are present. This is not a manifestation of a gentle and quiet spirit. To speak with such disregard to the thoughts of all men present would rather be a manifestation of the spirit of anti-Christ.

If you have followed my writings, you are aware that I have a 22 year old daughter who is a very great blessing to me. I do not desire to see her hindered in any way from attaining to all that the Father has for her. I would not place any restraint upon her exercise of the Spirit, while at the same time I would that she should always discern when it is appropriate for her to speak, and what attitude the Father would have her to manifest.

I have written about this matter of what a woman can and cannot say in the congregation of the saints in the following short article.

I believe you will find that what I teach on this is not as restrictive as you have assumed, but is in keeping with the thought and mind of Christ and His apostles.

There are certain things in your statements that reveal that you have adopted some wrong ideas concerning what the Scriptures teach on this topic. Your mention of their being neither male nor female is misapplied.

If you look at the context of this Scripture (I recommend beginning at Galatians 3:18 and reading to 4:1), you will observe that the context of Paul's words here is inheritance in Christ. His subject is not governmental order. Paul addresses governmental order among men and women in numerous other passages, but here he is speaking about the common inheritance that all have in Christ in the ages to come.

Consider that in Jewish society, and under the Law of Moses, slaves did not inherit, only free men. Also, a foreigner (Greek) could not inherit any land belonging to the children of Israel, only a Jew could. Similarly, women did not inherit, only men, with the only exception being in the case of a man who had no sons.

Paul is saying that in the Kingdom of God inheritance is not limited by these things. All can inherit the same. There is neither slave, nor free. There is no difference between Jew and Greek. There is neither male nor female. All can share the same inheritance in Christ.

Many whose souls have become excited to defend equal rights and roles for women today have taken this passage and applied it to the realm of divine government in this age. These words were not spoken for this purpose. There are numerous other passages that address governmental order among men and women, and we see that in the mind of Christ and His apostles there are distinctions between male and female which are to be observed by all who would receive His approval.

I Timothy 2:11-15
Let a woman quietly receive instruction with entire submissiveness. But I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet. For it was Adam who was first created, and then Eve. And it was not Adam who was deceived, but the woman being quite deceived, fell into transgression. But women shall be preserved through the bearing of children if they continue in faith and love and sanctity with self-restraint.

Here is one of several passages from the apostle Paul on the subject of gender and their respective governmental positions. Notice that he ends with the words "but women shall be preserved... if they continue... with self-restraint." A woman has to restrain the impulses of her soul if she would not suffer loss when she stands before the Father.

Sister, I share these things in a spirit of love, desiring for you, even as I do for my own daughter, that you might be fully approved on that day when you stand before our Father.
May you be blessed with peace and understanding in these days,

Joseph Herrin

Following is the teaching I provided a link to above. It answers the question, “In what ways are women restricted from speaking in church?”

In What Ways Are Women Restricted From Speaking in Church?

A brother in Christ wrote to ask:

I would like to ask you a question on women’s roles in the church setting. I agree with you that women should not teach men, even in cyberspace. You are a brave man to say something so bold and “contentious” as this. Let God be true and every man a liar. You will be aware of Paul’s instructions to the Corinthian church and Timothy about women remaining silent in the church. 1 Cor 11v5 indicates that Paul allowed women to pray and prophesy in the church however. I for some time have tried to resolve this apparent inconsistency. 1 Chronicles 25v 3 says “…..under the supervision of their father Jeduthun, who prophesied, using the harp in thanking and praising the Lord.”

In coming to a workable church practice, which is obedient to the scriptures, could the following be an acceptable practice? No women is permitted to teach, but they are permitted to pray and prophesy (i.e. words of thankfulness and praise with their heads covered) aloud... I know you have been an elder before – what are your views?

Dear Brother,

I have often been greatly edified by hearing a Christian woman give a testimony, prophecy, or prayer. And yes, I have even been instructed, and gained some insight into truth, through the testimony of a spiritual woman. I have often shared with others that it is apparent from Scriptures that some of the women around Christ during the time of His ministry were more spiritually perceptive than some of the men. Yet Christ never appointed any of these women to be apostles or leaders of the church.  This was not because women had nothing valuable to say or contribute, but rather because God had established in His divine government that women should be subject to man, and they should not usurp the authority of man.

I have often pondered the many admonitions of Paul regarding a woman's role in the church. I have truly wanted to understand what the mind of the Spirit of Christ is in this matter. I have no axe to grind, and I am certainly not a hater of women. My own daughter is now 20 years old, and is gifted with much spiritual insight, and I would not want to hinder her in ministering the life and wisdom of Christ that is present within her. At the same time, I do not want to transgress the will of the Father, but to know His mind and His pleasure in all things.

I will share with you some things I have discerned as I have meditated upon this subject. I will begin with a passage of Scripture that is often brought up in support of women teaching men.

Acts 18:24-26
Now a Jew named Apollos, an Alexandrian by birth, an eloquent man, came to Ephesus; and he was mighty in the Scriptures. This man had been instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in spirit, he was speaking and teaching accurately the things concerning Jesus, being acquainted only with the baptism of John; and he began to speak out boldly in the synagogue. But Priscilla and Aquila hearing him, took him aside and explained to him the way of God more accurately.

The statement here seems pretty plain, and I would conclude from it that both Aquila (a man) and Priscilla (a woman) were involved in explaining to Apollos (a man) the way of God more accurately. What occurs to me is that explaining a matter is not necessarily an act of usurpation, for it need not touch on issues of authority at all. Now if Priscilla had commanded Apollos, giving him specific instruction in what he must do, then there would have been issues of authority involved. However, the context of the passage does not indicate that this was the case.

I would point out, however, that this passage was not given to instruct the church in male/female roles. We are merely told what happened, and no specific endorsement or judgment of Priscilla's role is mentioned. It is not the same as the account of Ananias and Sapphira, another husband and wife team whose actions and words are spoken of in another passage of Acts. We are clearly told from the context of that passage that their actions were ones of disobedience. Here we are given no similar indication of a divine judgment or endorsement. We are simply told a snippet of history from the lives of these three people.

This passage might be used to support that which is clearly taught on in another place, but by itself it could not be used to establish a doctrine. I have heard some use this passage to say, "See, it is okay for women to teach men." They would rather establish their doctrine upon something as weak as this than to accept the apostle's doctrines where they teach specifically on this matter and give very plain instruction. Another example that some cite is the following:

Acts 21:8-9
On the next day Paul and his company came to Caesarea, and entering the house of Philip the evangelist, who was one of the seven, we stayed with him. Now this man had four virgin daughters who were prophetesses.

That women may prophesy as well as men is well established in the Bible. The Word of God speaks of prophetesses as well as prophets. This was true in the Old Testament as it is in the New Testament.

Joel 2:28-29
And it will come about after this that I will pour out My Spirit on all mankind; And your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions. And even on the male and female servants I will pour out My Spirit in those days.”

Women are as much partakers of the Holy Spirit as are men. It is only in government that there are differences. Woman was created for man, not man for woman. Man is the head of woman, and therefore woman is not to usurp authority over a man. Evidently, however, prophesying is not an act of usurpation.

In every instance where women are prohibited from speaking the issue of authority is in view. Women are not to exercise authority over men. I believe the apostles taught that women are not to PREACH to men in the assembly of believers. To do so provides too much of an opportunity for a woman to stray into areas of usurpation. I will show you how Paul's words declaring that women are not to "speak" in the assembly can be understood to mean they are not to "preach." There is sufficient evidence in other passages to establish the right of a woman to pray and prophesy in the assembly, so I do not take Paul's words to be a blanket call to complete silence.

As I mentioned, to pray and to prophesy is not an act of usurpation, for it does not involve taking authority over the man. The issue Paul is addressing is very clearly predicated upon issues of authority and headship, so we must always keep this in mind as we seek to arrive at the mind of Christ in looking at this topic. Prophecy is not intended to instruct or command, but rather to edify, exhort and console.

I Corinthians 14:3-4
But one who prophesies speaks to men for edification and exhortation and consolation. One who speaks in a tongue edifies himself; but one who prophesies edifies the church.

We are further told that prophecy is given as a sign. That is to say, it reveals something that was hidden.

I Corinthians 14:22-25
So then tongues are for a sign, not to those who believe but to unbelievers; but prophecy is for a sign, not to unbelievers but to those who believe. Therefore if the whole church assembles together and all speak in tongues, and ungifted men or unbelievers enter, will they not say that you are mad? But if all prophesy, and an unbeliever or an ungifted man enters, he is convicted by all, he is called to account by all; the secrets of his heart are disclosed; and so he will fall on his face and worship God, declaring that God is certainly among you.

In these passages which speak of the role of prophecy, we see that the word "instruction" is not mentioned. Prophesying is not the same as instructing, nor does it involve commanding a person or exercising authority over them.  The office of a prophet and the office of a teacher are mentioned distinctly from one another in the New Testament. Women may teach, and are even commanded to do so in some instances, as in the older women teaching the younger women, and mothers teaching their children. It is only teaching men that a woman is prohibited from doing in the assembly of believers.

Let us look at Paul's instructions to the churches in this matter as it is found in the following Scriptures:

I Corinthians 14:34-35
The women are to keep silent in the churches; for they are not permitted to speak, but are to subject themselves, just as the Law also says. If they desire to learn anything, let them ask their own husbands at home; for it is improper for a woman to speak in church.

I Timothy 2:11-12
A woman must quietly receive instruction with entire submissiveness. But I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet.

These are perhaps the two most pointed passages that speak to this issue. It is clear from the passage in I Corinthians that authority is the main issue bearing upon Paul's instructions. He says women "are to subject themselves." This reveals that what is said is based upon an understanding of the government God has established among men and women. Again, in I Timothy Paul uses the word "submissiveness" as well as the words "I do not allow a woman to... exercise authority over a man." This is what is forbidden. It is unseemly for a woman to exercise authority over a man. There is a great temptation for women to begin straying into areas of usurpation when they are given a position of instruction over men. Instructing and exercising authority over others are closely intertwined, and we see these related to one another from the time of our childhood.

As children we are instructed by our parents, and we also know they are our authority and we are to obey them. In school we are instructed by our teachers, and they exercise authority over us. Those in the military are given instructors whom they must obey. On the job we are often instructed by our superiors. Thus we see that instruction and authority are very closely related.

This need not always be the case. There are certainly instances where instructors have no authority over those they teach. They may instead be looked upon as servants to those they teach. I believe a teacher in the church should always seek to maintain a servant's heart. At the same time we are told that teachers are to be accounted worthy of honor.

I Timothy 5:17
The elders who rule well are to be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who work hard at preaching and teaching.

In this passage we see that "preaching and teaching" among the body of Christ is related to honor. Honor is itself related to authority in that it is an act of showing deference to another. A younger woman should honor an older woman who provides spiritual instruction by showing deference to her. In the same way, young men should show the same deference to older men who work hard at preaching and teaching. It would create some confusion for women to act as the teachers of men, for then the women would expect the men to show them deference, or to defer to them. The word deference means "humble submission or respect."

Throughout the Scriptures when we read of male/female relationships, such as that between husband and wife, we are told that husbands are to love their wives, and wives are to respect their husbands. Love is at the heart of both of these admonitions, but a woman respecting her husband also implies an acknowledgment of his authority, and position of headship.

Some have taken the apostle Paul's words about a woman being silent as a blanket admonition, suggesting she is to never speak in the church. We must ask, “When would she pray or prophesy if she is to be silent among the congregation of believers? Is not prophecy valuable only where there are others to hear it?”

We have read of Philip having daughters who were prophetesses. Where were they prophesying? We are told that Paul and his companions came to Philip’s house. While there, other Christians came and joined with them. Wherever the people of God are assembled, there we will find the church. A church is never defined by a meeting inside a building that is called a church. The New Testament never referred to any building as a church. It is the people of God who are called the church (literally, the eklessia, the called out ones.)

I do not doubt that Philip’s daughters prophesied in his house when other believers were gathered. In doing so they were speaking among the congregation of believers. In the following verse we read of Agabus and others coming to see Paul at Philip’s house.

Acts 21:10-12
As we were staying there for some days, a prophet named Agabus came down from Judea. And coming to us, he took Paul's belt and bound his own feet and hands, and said, "This is what the Holy Spirit says: "In this way the Jews at Jerusalem will bind the man who owns this belt and deliver him into the hands of the Gentiles.'" When we had heard this, we as well as the local residents began begging him not to go up to Jerusalem.

All of this occurred in Phillips's house where he resided with his daughters who were prophetesses. The following Scriptures reveal that the church is often congregated at someone’s house.

Colossians 4:15
Greet the brethren who are in Laodicea and also Nymphas and the church that is in his house.

Philemon 2
And to Apphia our sister, and to Archippus our fellow soldier, and to the church in your house:

So, if Philip's daughters are prophesying in his house while saints are gathered, then they are speaking in the church. Since God did grant to women the gift of prophecy, and prophecy is given to edify the church, we must conclude that women are permitted to do so among the congregation. The following words of Paul also appear to confirm this.

I Corinthians 11:5, 13
But every woman who has her head uncovered while praying or prophesying disgraces her head, for she is one and the same as the woman whose head is shaved... Judge for yourselves: is it proper for a woman to pray to God with her head uncovered?

Paul is writing to the church in Corinth about their meeting together. He mentions women praying and prophesying, so I would conclude that it was the custom of the apostles to allow them to speak publicly in this way. I know some would contest this because Paul says he does not permit a woman to speak, but let us examine more closely the word that is translated as "speak." The word can hold the meaning of simple speech, but it also holds the meaning of "to preach." It comes from a root word that means "to lay forth," and I believe this is speaking of teaching and preaching. We can see this word translated as "preach" in a number of instances in the New Testament.

Mark 2:2
And straightway many were gathered together, insomuch that there was no room to receive them, no, not so much as about the door: and he preached the word unto them.

Acts 13:42
And when the Jews were gone out of the synagogue, the Gentiles besought that these words might be preached to them the next sabbath.

Acts 14:25
And when they had preached the word in Perga, they went down into Attalia:

Acts 16:6
Now when they had gone throughout Phrygia and the region of Galatia, and were forbidden of the Holy Ghost to preach the word in Asia,

In every one of these instances the same Greek word is used that Paul employed when he said the women were not allowed to "speak" in church. We can see then that the understanding could be that women are not allowed to "preach" in church. They can pray and they can prophesy, they can give testimony, the older women can teach the younger, but they cannot preach to men, for this would be to usurp the authority of man.

So, in answer to your question, the conclusion I am drawn to as I examine Scriptures is that a woman is permitted to both pray and prophesy in church, even in the presence of men. However, she is prohibited from preaching and teaching. This finds a harmony with all of the Scriptures presented here, and I know of none which this understanding violates.

May you be blessed with peace and understanding in these days,


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