Sunday, June 7, 2020

Sarah's Children -Part 2

"Many daughters have done nobly,
But you excel them all."
Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain,
But a woman who fears Yahweh, she shall be praised.
Proverbs 31:29-30

The High Calling of Womanhood

Do you long to fulfill Yahweh’s purpose for you? Do you want His will to be fulfilled in your life more than anything else? If you were told that only one out of a hundred thousand women fear Yahweh and seek to be found pleasing to Him in all aspects of their lives; if you were advised that His will would lead you to walk differently, speak differently, dress differently, and in very profound ways to simply live differently than all the women in the society around you, as well as the vast majority in the church, would you yet desire to obey?

To put a desire to please Yahweh above every other desire is to fear Him. Such a life will eventually lead to praise. The praise referred to will not be the hollow acclaim of a fallen world that is passing away. It will be the praise that originates in the mind of God and is everlasting. What better praise is there than the praise of the Creator who formed us? Yahshua heard the voice from heaven proclaim, “Behold, this is My beloved Son in whom I am well pleased.” This is the manner of praise of which we speak.

What is it that elicits the praise of Yahweh upon men and women? Is it not obedience? And what is obedience? Is it not conformity to the revealed mind of the Father?

Yahshua said He was always beholding the Father and He only did the things He saw the Father doing. He said He only spoke the words the Father gave Him to speak. He declared that He never did anything that had its origin outside of the Father’s will.

John 8:28-29
So Yahshua said, "When you lift up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am He, and I do nothing on My own initiative, but I speak these things as the Father taught Me. And He who sent Me is with Me; He has not left Me alone, for I always do the things that are pleasing to Him." 
The world has many definitions for success. People who have great talents are viewed as successful. People who make lots of money, who make a name for themselves, or who excel in some field of endeavor are seen as successful. In the Kingdom of God there is only one definition of success. It is knowing the will of the Father and doing it. This alone will elicit His praises.

It follows, therefore, that the woman who desires to be successful in the Kingdom of God must know what the will of the Father is for her. Having come to an understanding of the Father’s will she must then seek to be conformed to that will. As a woman, you can know for certain that the Father does have a specific desire and calling for your life.

Yahweh had a specific purpose in mind when He created all of His works. Nothing was created without a design and predetermined purpose that was fully formed in the mind of God. Yahweh had a specific design for the angels, and there are different ranks of angels. Among the heavenly beings there are archangels, seraphim, and cherubim. There are also many fantastic heavenly creatures that we find described in the pages of scripture. Some have multiple heads and many wings. Some speak with a voice that causes the pillars of the temple in heaven to shake. Yahweh has a purpose for each being.

Yet not all beings have been content with Yahweh’s purpose for them. In Ezekiel we find the description of a magnificent created being. Its description is breathtaking.

Ezekiel 28:12-18
"You had the seal of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty. You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone was your covering: the ruby, the topaz and the diamond; the beryl, the onyx and the jasper; the lapis lazuli, the turquoise and the emerald; and the gold, the workmanship of your settings and sockets, was in you. On the day that you were created they were prepared. You were the anointed cherub who covers, and I placed you there. You were on the holy mountain of God; you walked in the midst of the stones of fire. You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created until unrighteousness was found in you.”

What an awesome being is described here! The seal upon this covering cherub was “perfection.” Think of what this means. There was no defect anywhere. All was excellent and holy and pure. There was nothing to mar the appearance in any way. One could search for a lifetime and never find anything amiss.

Furthermore, this angelic being is described as “full of wisdom”. One translation renders this as “the sum of wisdom.” What marvelous breadth of mind the Father placed within. Not even Solomon was described in this way.

The description continues that this being was “perfect in beauty.” How can we even fathom what this description means. We have nothing on this earth to compare. How many people have been captivated by a beautiful sunset over the ocean, or the appearance of dew on the flowers of the morning? The Father has placed many wondrous and beautiful sights in creation, yet the creation suffers the consequences of sin. This angel was so breathtakingly beautiful that we would have trouble turning our gaze away from such a sight.

The garments with which this cherub was adorned were also appropriately magnificent. The purest gold was used and he was arrayed with the most precious of gemstones, themselves flawless and full of beauty.

Yahweh excelled in the fashioning of this magnificent being. He vested this covering cherub with characteristics that were part of His own nature. He gave it perfection, wisdom, and beauty. He also had an appointed purpose for this being to fulfill. We are told that this was the “anointed cherub who covers”. Some have suggested that this cherub stood in the presence of Yahweh and covered His glory. Yahweh says, “I placed you there”, speaking of His predetermined will for this being.

Yet we know that the being that is described is the same as the one we now know as Satan, the adversary. He was among the greatest angelic beings  ever created, and his role before Yahweh was lofty and magnificent. What glory was his, and what responsibility? Whatever it means to be the anointed cherub that covers, we can be assured that the calling was equal to the being selected to fulfill it. To be in the very presence of Yahweh would be a calling that far exceeds the worth of any being of creation.

How then did Lucifer, the light bearer, begin to find dissatisfaction with his position and calling? Ezekiel continues the story with these words:

Ezekiel 28:17
"Your heart was lifted up because of your beauty; You corrupted your wisdom by reason of your splendor.”

The apostle Paul makes reference to the transgression of Satan when speaking to Timothy. When giving instructions for the appointment of ministers Paul states that they should not be a new convert, “lest being puffed up with pride he fall into the same condemnation as the devil” (I Timothy 3:6, NKJV). At some point this anointed cherub took his eyes off the real source of all beauty, wisdom and perfection, which is Yahweh, and he began to gaze upon himself. He saw the magnificence of his own creation, his great beauty and splendor, and he began to find fault with his place in Yahweh’s order. He thought that he should walk in a greater purpose, a higher calling, and have more honor. Isaiah speaks of it in this way:

Isaiah 14:12-14
"How you have fallen from heaven, O star of the morning, son of the dawn! You have been cut down to the earth, you who have weakened the nations! But you said in your heart, 'I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God, and I will sit on the mount of assembly in the recesses of the north. I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.'

What a tragedy befell this glorious being. By seeking to ascend to a place above that assigned to him, he fell to the very depths. Instead of receiving the praise of Yahweh, he became the adversary of God and torment awaits him.

Why did this have to happen? Was not the predetermined plan of Yahweh good enough for this being, that he should consider it lowly and unworthy of his person? Verse 11 of this same chapter of Isaiah tells us, “Your pomp and the music of your harps have been brought down to Sheol.” Some have interpreted this to mean that one of the duties of this covering cherub involved music, and he led the creation in worship of Yahweh. Could there be any higher calling than to be Yahweh’s hand appointed worship leader? Great and awesome were God’s design and purpose for this cherub.

Lucifer did fall, however. He did corrupt his wisdom and he abandoned the role assigned to him by his Creator. Such was his beauty, wisdom and great splendor that one third of the angelic beings joined with him in his rebellion. These other beings considered his perfection and flawless beauty, his splendorous adornment, his breadth of mind, and they were carried away with his deceit. They too corrupted their wisdom and they worshiped the creation rather than the Creator.

What we all need to see in this is that through the corrupting of wisdom even the very highest calling can begin to lose its luster. There was possibly no higher calling in heaven, yet it became a detestable thing to Lucifer. It became a thing despised and loathed.

Lucifer’s calling was not lowly in any way. If we were to step into the arenas that this angelic being walked in we would be immediately undone by the glory of it all. We would fall down as dead men and women and cry out “Woe is me. I am undone, for I an unclean and unworthy.” Like a homeless derelict that is suddenly brought into the greatest mansion on earth, filled with rich tapestries, parquet floors, marble columns, gilded ornaments, and many costly and rare furnishings, we would see the filth of our own array and say “I am not worthy to be here.”

This cherub’s calling was so far beyond anything imaginable upon this earth that any comparison is feeble at best. Yet he began to view the glory of his appointment as a thing that was detestable.

It is my hope that you will now be able to receive my next statements. Satan has brought his deception to earth and he has caused women to revile the predetermined role and calling that Yahweh has chosen for their lives. Yahweh has a high and glorious calling for women, yet most women despise it. They view it as lowly and contemptible. They feel it is degrading and that it is beneath them.

Is God’s calling and role that He has predetermined by His own counsel actually beneath the dignity of women? Do you suppose that Yahweh simply wants women to suffer in endless misery and to lack fulfillment? No! It is a high and glorious calling that has been granted to women, yet few see it as such. Satan has worked hard to deceive women everywhere. Look at the message of the following verses.

Revelation 12:9
And the great dragon was thrown down, the serpent of old who is called the devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world; he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him.

I John 5:19
We know that we are of God, and that the whole world lies in the power of the evil one.

Satan deceives the whole world, and the whole world lies in his power which is rooted in deception. What deception do you suppose he would like to cover the world with? His own corrupted wisdom told him that Yahweh’s calling, role, and purpose for his life were detestable. It is this same error he would seek to duplicate among mankind. AND HE HAS DONE SO.

Satan has deceived women everywhere concerning their position, role, and calling. In Genesis it is revealed that woman was created for man. Paul reiterates this in his epistle to the church in Corinth.

I Corinthians 11:7-9
For a man ought not to have his head covered, since he is the image and glory of God; but the woman is the glory of man. For man does not originate from woman, but woman from man; for indeed man was not created for the woman's sake, but woman for the man's sake.

Yes woman was taken from man. As man was created to be the image and glory of God, so woman was made to be the glory of man. Woman was created to be the helper of man.

Genesis 2:18
Then Yahweh God said, "It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him."

Many women look at the Biblical instructions regarding womanhood and they see them as being part of an outdated patriarchal society. They see no reason why men should be leaders in the home, in the church, in government, or any of the other forums of life. The woman’s movement asserts that there is no difference between man and woman, that a woman is to be seen as an equal to man in all areas of life. In this is an echo of Lucifer’s transgression, “I will ascend..., I will ascend..., I will ascend....”

Satan has worked tirelessly to destroy the order of creation that Yahweh has set in place by His own counsel and forethought. He rejected Yahweh’s will for his life, now he seeks to cause all others to join in his rebellion. At some point Lucifer began looking at himself and thinking that he deserved better. He began to despise his calling. Now as Satan the adversary he uses the same corrupted wisdom on men and women.

Women have their minds buffeted with thoughts of, “Why should I submit myself to man? They are just common, rude, lowly, self-centered creatures that are no better than women.” In every possible way Satan seeks to lower the image of man in the eyes of women. The lower man appears, the more unreasonable it seems for a woman to walk in submission and humility before man, and the more reasonable it seems that she has every right to seek to ascend above this role to a higher calling.

Satan’s attacks have not just been to deceive women, however. He has been greatly effective in getting man to see himself as nothing more than an advanced ape. The man who sees himself as little more than a beast will act little better than a beast. By external observation there would seem to be little to distinguish man and to cause any to think highly of him. Men waste themselves in drunkenness, carousing, fornicating, lying, thievery, selfishness, ignorance, slothfulness, and envy. The news is full of stories of men acting as  mere brute beasts, killing and abusing one another.

Yes, the whole world does lie in the power of the evil one. His power is deception and he has deceived the whole world and now the world is living out of a deceived mindset. By looking at the world through our human senses it seems unreasonable to conclude that women should submit to man in any form, but we are not of this world and we are not to judge by appearances.

Though man has been deceived to see himself as an advanced beast, this is not his identity at all. Man did not evolve from a common ancestor of the lower primates, he was created to be the image and glory of God.

Genesis 1:26-27
Then God said, "Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth." God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him...

John 10:33-36
The Jews answered Him, "For a good work we do not stone You, but for blasphemy; and because You, being a man, make Yourself out to be God." Yahshua answered them, "Has it not been written in your Law, "I SAID, YOU ARE GODS'? If he called them gods, to whom the word of God came (and the Scripture cannot be broken), do you say of Him, whom the Father sanctified and sent into the world, "You are blaspheming,' because I said, "I am the Son of God'?”

Satan has done such a masterful job of deceiving the world that even those men who have received the word of God consider it blasphemy to declare that they are as gods. Yet the scriptures declare that it is true. Yahweh’s very intent in creating man was to make a being in His own likeness and image. What an awesome thought. Not even Lucifer, the covering cherub, was said to have been created in Yahweh’s image and likeness, after His glory.

Furthermore, we are told that as men we will judge angels.

I Corinthians 6:3
Do you not know that we will judge angels? How much more matters of this life?

Such is Yahweh’s high purpose in His design and calling of man that we are told that all of creation is waiting for the sons of God to be revealed.

Romans 8:19-22
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 willingly, 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.

Man is a glorious and wonderful creation of Yahweh. He was created to bear the image of the divine. He was created to be the temple and dwelling place of the Holy Spirit of God. Furthermore, we are told that redeemed and regenerate man is as Christ is in this world.

I John 4:17
By this, love is perfected with us, so that we may have confidence in the day of judgment; because as He is, so also are we in this world.

Man need not wait until he goes to heaven one day to be conformed to the image of Christ. The elect and chosen ones of God are as Christ is even now in this world. We are groaning in anticipation of this mortal body being put off and immortality being put on, of this corruptible flesh being removed and the incorruptible being put on. We don’t know what our appearance will be like, but we know we shall be like the Son of God for we shall see Him just as He is (I John 3:2).

There are many scriptures that reveal the majesty of man’s creation. The image has been marred through sin and deceit, but Yahweh has never changed His plan. He said, “Let us create man in Our image, after Our likeness” and one day all of creation will see man revealed in the very image and likeness of God. Yahshua, when disputing with the Pharisees, quoted from the Psalm that says,

Psalms 82:6
I said, "You are gods, and all of you are sons of the Most High.”

Oh how Satan hates for men and women to understand these truths. Satan’s desire is to debase man that he might continue to rule over him. How he fears man coming to an understanding of his Creator’s design for mankind.

If women view man as some creature that is little better than a beast, then Satan is able to cause them to readily agree that it would be debasing and detestable for woman to submit to man. It would be little better than living your life to take care of a dog or some other animal. But when woman realizes that Yahweh did a marvelous thing in creating man and that He fashioned man in the very image and glory of His own person, then things appear much differently.

Does it not sound somewhat blasphemous to our ears when we hear a man proclaim, “I am a god and a son of the Most High God”? Yet this is the very thing Yahshua testified of man when he quoted from the Psalms. Does it not seem a bit presumptuous for man to say, “I am as Christ in this world?” Yet this is the apostle John’s testimony.

Why does it strike our ears as blasphemy to stand and boldly declare “I am created in the image and glory of God?” It is because the whole world lies in the power of the evil one and he has diminished the knowledge of who we are through his deceit.

What if Yahweh God decided by His own counsel to create a magnificent being called man that would share His very nature and character, likeness and glory? What if he decided to place His own Spirit within these beings and to through these beings to eventually put every enemy under His feet and to share His very throne with them? What if these beings were so designed that they could walk as the very friends of God and He could have fellowship with them? What marvelous creatures they must be!

Can you begin to see the warfare that has gone on in this area? Satan has sought to cause women to view their calling as a helper to man to be a lowly and detestable calling, even as he abandoned his role and purpose due to the same error. Yet their calling is high and lofty. A woman is purposed to be the helper, companion, lover, and friend of the only beings created in the image of God. This is a high and excellent calling and it is not to be despised.

I am convinced that one of the things a woman is called to in her role of a helper to man is to help him recover the understanding of who he was created to be. When a woman treats her husband with reverence and respect she is affirming him and magnifying his own understanding of his high calling. When women fail to respect men they act as a drag and a weight upon the man. By failing to respect man, man is encouraged even more to not respect himself and he sinks lower and lower.

A part of the high calling of women in this day and hour is to help men to regain the understanding that they were created in the image and likeness and glory of God. This will ultimately prove to be to the woman’s benefit. When a man sees himself as created in the image of God, he will begin to act more godly. He will treat his wife with love, compassion, mercy, and understanding. His behavior in all ways will become more elevated. When man begins to see that he is in the image of God and not a mere beast, he will also begin to see that his wife is much more than a physical body to be lusted after or despised.

Man needs a helper. It was Yahweh’s own declaration that it was not good for man to be alone. There has been no day when his need has been greater. May many daughters of Sarah come forth to elevate their husbands, to lift them up in the midst of a world that seeks to diminish them. May they by their very behavior, by their conversation and respectful demeanor, remind their men that they were created in the image of God and theirs is an exceedingly high calling.

Such is Yahweh’s purpose and will for women. May none despise it.

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Joseph Herrin
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