9. The Veil
God places Gethsemane at the beginning of the Way into the Holiest, the altar of incense. The veil of Jesus' flesh, the veil of Gethsemane, serves two purposes. One, it is the wide-open door by which we who see Christ alone stride boldly into the Presence of the Holy, sitting upon the throne of God, and looking out through God's eyes from the Mercy-Seat, to see all things as He sees them. And two, it is the impenetrable barrier that drives away all who carry a double heart, a double mind, seeing Christ and “flesh,” good and evil, sin and God.
9. The Veil
So He drove out the man; and He placed cherubim at the east of the garden of Eden, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to guard the way to the tree of life. Genesis 3:24
But into the second part (behind the veil) the high priest went alone once a year, not without blood, which he offered for himself and for the people’s sins committed in ignorance; the Holy Spirit indicating . . . the way into the Holiest of All . . . Hebrews 9:7-8
And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice, and yielded up His spirit. Then, behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom . . . Matthew 27:50-51
Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way which He consecrated for us, through the veil, that is, His flesh, and having a High Priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. Hebrews 10:19-22
For we are members of His body, of His flesh and of His bones . . . the two shall become one flesh. This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church. Ephesians 5:30-32
The word “mystery” means a hidden secret that no one can know just by looking, but is known only by a select few whose eyes are opened to the truth as a direct miracle of the Holy Spirit by the appointment of God.
Those who live in the tree of knowledge read their Bibles and see nothing beyond knowing about good and knowing about evil, choosing to do good and choosing to do evil, from Genesis 1 to Revelation 22. Those who live in the tree of life read their Bibles and see nothing but Christ their life fulfilling in them and through them all that the Father speaks from Genesis 1 to Revelation 22.
Even the New Testament reads as a ministry of death to those who see sin in their hearts and not Christ. Some, discovering the grace and love of God, imagine that they must throw out most of the New Testament, especially the prophetic word, because of how wrongly they once read it. They don't understand that the entire problem was their former way of seeing, not the words of the New Testament.
Those who see sin in their hearts, know sin in their hearts and read obligation all through the New Testament. Those who see Christ in their hearts, know Christ in their hearts and read liberty and joy all through the New Testament. You can tell where a person lives by how they read, including those who reject chunks of the New Testament, imagining that they have found “the grace of God.”
The veil, the block, the barrier is the flesh of Christ.
It is God's intention that the flesh of Christ should stumble almost everyone, barring for them at this time the way into the Holiest of All.
That is why God places Gethsemane at the beginning of the Way into the Holiest, the altar of incense. The veil of Jesus' flesh, the veil of Gethsemane, serves two purposes. One, it is the wide-open door by which we who see Christ alone stride boldly into the Presence of the Holy, sitting upon the throne of God, and looking out through God's eyes from the Mercy-Seat, to see all things as He sees them. And two, it is the impenetrable barrier that drives away all who carry a double heart, a double mind, seeing Christ and “flesh,” good and evil, sin and God.
None can enter in who see in that way.
Listen to their talk. They want to talk about Christ AND sin, but what do their words really convey? Practical atheism. The Person of Salvation, Christ Jesus, is far, far away from their gut, and just not the center of their talk.
Thus they stumble at the flesh of Christ, as God intends.
There really are only a few who enter in first. Those few are meek and lowly of heart. They have two passions that consume them. Their first passion is to know Jesus, to learn of Him, to behold His glory, to see Him openly revealed IN their flesh. Their second passion is to hold the door wide open, standing in the shadows unnoticed, as all the multitudes rush in to all the glory of God.
We must understand the Veil to know the Covenant of God. We must know why God MUST block ALL whose hearts are not wholly His from entering into the Holiest, in spite of the wide-open Veil.
In the Holiest beats the heart of the Living God, personal and real. Moses called God's heart the mercy seat; John called God's heart the throne of heaven. We, beyond all wonder, call God's heart our own heart.
God will never share His heart with another, nor even allow any other to see it's tender beating. It's just too personal for Him. Unless we KNOW that our heart and God's heart are the same thing, unless we know that we are one with God in the bond of the Covenant, we will never enter there. It's not that those who don't enter can't; it's that they won't, for they can never see the entrance through the veil. They see only the veil, and it does not catch their interest.
They can never know the flesh of Christ or see anything there to be desired.
That's what a gate is, a door, a veil. It's purpose is to allow full and free entrance to those who belong, and it's purpose is to bar out those who do not. And the entire dividing line is “what do you want?”
Jesus' words in Gethsemane ARE that door, that veil. As we accept that His words ARE our words, final and complete with utter rest on our side – to the extent of allowing those words to be everything we are by faith alone, in full opposition to how we presently “see,” or “feel,” then we enter into total union with Christ in all ways.
But if we see the words of Jesus as something we must copy. If we imagine that “we” (this third little guy running around in us) must bring ourselves (fallen and fleshy, riddled with sin) into submission to a third entity, Christ, supposedly also “in” us, but not very big and not very real, then we are living “according to the flesh.” We can never enter in, but we will see those entering in, and we will call them blasphemers. “Christ IN your flesh? How can you put Christ and “evil” together? You are so deceived.”
It is an effective barrier. Even though it stands wide open for whosoever will to boldly enter in, yet it is most effective at keeping out all who divide their hearts in the imagination and deceit of their own minds.
I have felt instinctively for some time that the tree of knowledge and the law of God are the same thing. I now see that reality more clearly than I ever have. Remember that it is impossible to approach life without passing under the siren's call, the temptation, of the law in the hands of the church, offered by the serpent.
God presents Himself to us in two ways. That's what a door is. A door is two things. It is a welcome entrance and it is an effective barrier. God will know only those who want to know Him above life itself.
First, God comes to us (since Adam) outside of us. God outside of us is called “The Law” or “the letter of the word.” Second, God comes to us inside of us. God inside of us is called, “Christ Jesus.” The form of God on the outside of us comes out of God. It is a description and definition of God, that is, God observed Himself and then defined what He observed onto paper (or stone tablets).
So when we read the commandments of God, Old Testament or New, we see an outward description and definition of who and what God is. Yet that outward definition of God cannot be our life and cannot ever save us. God made us to be filled with God; He did not make us to “act” like God, separate from Himself.
In complete contrast, God on the inside of us, the Person of the Lord Jesus, does not need a definition of Himself, He is Himself. Thus God inside of us is all that He is, light and life and love, abounding in us and flowing out from us.
By the law, God comes to us externally in instructions written down on paper that we read or are read to us or He comes as a “Voice” that is, to us, from a Being separate from us. By those external instructions, we know what is “right” and what is “wrong,” what is “good” and what is “evil.” Then, since we see ourselves separate from God, we see ourselves as a moral agent who is responsible for his or her own way. Paul made it clear that if we attempt to walk with God by external definitions, either Christian or Old Testament, we must die.
Thus God is either coming to us from the outside of us, or God is coming to us on the inside of us. The first is the law, the second is Christ.
It is clearly evident that those who attempt to make themselves presentable to God through any form of works or performance, according to how they perceive the descriptions of what God is and what God does, are IN FACT attempting to be “LIKE” God in the way the serpent suggested. They are trying to “look like” God – do not commit adultery, do not steal, go to church, pay your tithes – by “acting” like God.
Only those who surrender to the Person of God inside of them, Christ AS us, have stopped trying to be like God. They just are, because it is God Himself appearing in them.
Simply put, the tree of knowledge is trying to be “like God” by ourselves doing what He says. The tree of life is accepting God being Himself through us, and thus we are just like Him.
Now, the entire Bible goes in either direction. Those who see God outside of themselves and not their very and only life, see “the Law,” that is, an external definition of God all through the Bible, Old Testament and New. And those who see God filling them with His glory, they in Him and He in them, utterly and only, see Christ, that is, the revelation of Christ all through the Bible, Old Testament and New.
To those who live separate from God, the entire Bible speaks separation - the ministry of death unto death. But to those who live in union with the Person of God inside of them, the entire Bible speaks that union - the ministry of life unto life.
“Jesus, you are my Life. You fulfill all that God speaks in me, as me, and through me. I give you thanks for the weakness You made me to be, and I expect You always to arise in me.”
(Forgive me for repeating with differing words the critical definition of “the veil.” As a teacher, I want to get across the clearest picture I can.)
The Bible very much is part of Jesus' flesh, His physical form. All those who see sin in their hearts see sin all through the Bible. And those who see Christ in their hearts see Christ all through the Bible. To one the Bible is the aroma of death leading to death, and to the other the Bible is the aroma of life leading to life.
There is no death in God; death is found in the seeing.
But it is not just the Bible that stumbles those who see sin “sharing” their hearts with Christ. Nor is it Jesus' flesh as He walked this earth. No. The biggest thing that stumbles those who will not enter in is Christ's flesh today.
My flesh IS God's flesh. God says it is, and I can proclaim what God says and no man can shut me up.
Before continuing, we must give a Biblical definition to the word “flesh.” “Flesh” has two very, very different meanings. Most of the time, the word “flesh,” in the Bible, means the outward human persona or form. That outward human persona or form was fashioned for us individually and personally by the Design of God. Our outward human persona, our “flesh,” comes as much from the structured qualities of our spirit body as it does from the structured qualities of our physical body (both nature) and as much as it does from the formation and development of our mind, will, and emotions through the circumstances of our lives (nurture.)
Our flesh, according to what God says in the New Testament, is the temple, the eternal dwelling place of Almighty God. It is through our flesh, our outward human persona, in all of its quirks and ways of doing, in all of its hopes and desires, that God reveals His glory. “That the life of Jesus also may be revealed in your mortal flesh.”
It is an interesting thing that there is no reason to assign the definition of “evil” to the word “flesh” as it is used most of the time. The flesh God created is utterly neutral, neither good nor evil. It is a vessel only, drawing it's nature and attributes from the spirit of disobedience or the Spirit of Christ dwelling inside of it. God says that if Christ lives in our hearts, then we are always in the Spirit; we are never, not for one moment, “in the flesh.”
There is, however, a second definition of “flesh,” in the New Testament. Now, never does flesh mean a “fallen human nature.” There is no such thing as a “human nature.” The definition of “human” contains the Person of God in ALL that He is (filled with ALL the fullness of God) as the largest part of that definition. But Paul uses the word “flesh” to mean something found in the mind and heart of man that is openly hostile to God.
That something is imagination only. It is the imagination that we are morally responsible persons, on our own, separate from God. It is the imagination that we must line ourselves up, bring ourselves to the death of the cross, subject ourselves under the hand of Christ, bring ourselves into submission. It is the imagination that we, separate from God, must “hear what He says” and obey it.
God hates that whole way of thinking. It is the lie Adam swallowed in the garden; it is the lie that fills the church of Christ today. That way of thinking is hostile to God. It pretends to honor Him, but instead it exalts and honors sin. It is the temptation of the serpent.
What we see is what we honor. The thing that fills our view is the thing that we fear.
The best picture is Brer Rabbit. He was free of the Tar Baby; he had no connection to it. But the fox tricked him. The fox persuaded Brer Rabbit that he needed to bring the Tar Baby into submission to “Christ.” So Brer Rabbit whacked the flesh, imagining that he would bring it into obedience. Instantly he was stuck to the flesh in the imagination of his mind. So he kicked it, trying to get it under his foot. What happened? Every attempt of Brer Rabbit to “get his flesh into submission to Christ” was nothing other than the exaltation of the flesh, honoring sin and binding himself to it. How could Brer Rabbit bring the Tar Baby into submission to the glorious liberty of Christ, when he had his back turned to that liberty? Brer Rabbit was completely unattached to the flesh at the start. If he had paid no attention to the preacher telling him his problem was “sin,” he would have simply turned his back on it without a thought and leaped into the glorious reality of Christ.
The serpent, the fox, speaks through “deeper truth” and “holiness” preachers more than nearly anyone else.
We cannot see sin in our flesh unless we have our backs turned to Christ. Those who “deal with their own sin” have their backs turned to Christ and are living in open warfare against God. They cannot know Him; they do not honor Him. That is the definition of “flesh,” of the carnal mind, that Paul warns us against.
“Putting off the old man” is the easiest thing in the world. Believe in Jesus, see Him alone regardless of what you “see” or “feel” outwardly. The old man vanishes into the nothingness he already was.
And if you are one whose heart is consumed with seeing sin inside yourself, of seeing evil in your flesh, if you are bound to the Tar Baby in the imagination of your mind, what do you do? That's so easy. Repent. Turn away from seeing anything inside of you other than Jesus all through every particle of your humanity, spirit, soul, and body.
You see, it never was the Tar Baby – there was nothing “wrong” with the Tar Baby; it always was just the deceitful mutterings of the fox. The Tar Baby was there only to get Brer Rabbit to turn his back on freedom and to fill his mind with nothingness. To keep him out of the Briar Patch that was calling to his heart.
Seeing sin in your flesh is the carnal mind; it happens only because you have turned your back to Christ, because you listened to some preacher who lied to you about the Blood and Cross of Christ and the absolute reality of His Person – Salvation and Savior inside of you, carrying you, becoming you, filling you, revealing God through you, your life, your righteousness, your song, your heart, your everything.
When you see Christ alone, both when you look in the mirror AND when you feel your worst, then your “flesh,” your outward human person, belongs to God; He is entirely responsible for it. Your flesh IS His flesh, and He loves and nourishes His flesh.
That is the BOND of the Covenant.
You agree to exalt Christ, the word God is always speaking, and God agrees to take utter and total responsibility for YOU, for all that you are.
Wacking the Tar Baby is Adam's rebellion. “Getting your flesh underfoot” is hatred of God's Person as He would dwell in you; it is, to put it specifically, atheism. It is the opposite of what it appears; it is the exaltation of the flesh.
Yet, in complete contrast, when someone whose heart is divided hears me say, “My flesh is holy; my flesh is the flesh of God; God fills my flesh with His glory,” they imagine that I am “exalting the flesh.” How bizarre! I have never known the sweetest, purest surrender to Christ than what I know as the meaning of those words fills my heart and mind. I see Christ alone; when I look inside of ME, I see nothing but Him. And when I look out, I see only as He sees, seated upon the throne of God.
There is no higher exaltation of Christ than to walk in the Bond of the Covenant, than to enter with ALL boldness into the Holiest of All with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.
The King James Bible
Of all the translations of the Bible into modern languages, the King James Version is most likely the worst translation as far as the truth is concerned. Yes, the KJV translators had the best copy of the original Greek, the Textus Receptus, but they had no knowledge of the Greek language of the first century. The Greek they knew was classical Greek, a language as different from the Greek of the apostle’s day as Shakespeare’s English is from ours.
As a result, the translators used incorrect definitions of the Greek words in their translation. More than that, they imposed much Roman Catholicism, drawing from Jerome’s Latin Vulgate, and they imposed a whole lot of imaginary nonsense from North European, that is Germanic, medieval pagan mythology and attitudes. These men were university intellectuals who had no knowledge of the power of the Holy Spirit or of our union with Christ.
Because these men had no personal knowledge of the power of Christ and His oneness with us, they placed in their translation the prevailing hatred of the serpent for humanity. Modern “Christian” prejudice against the human and against “the flesh,” comes to a large extent from the KJV. There is nothing evil about the flesh, nor anything “good” either, except that which God pronounced “good,” in the day in which He crafted the human form.
The King James Version, however, speaks against even a knowledge of Christ having redeemed us utterly. Some recent versions of the English Bible have lost that hostility to man.
However, many groups of believers, including many “deeper truth” groups, have locked onto the KJV as “God's only anointed English Bible.” This is the same problem Jesus faced: the claim that God moved upon men hundreds of years ago, but He certainly cannot be found in what men do today. This is the familiar claim of anti-Christ, that Christ does not appear in the flesh. Thus they regard as “holy,” the hostility to man that comes out of the dark ages and “heresy” the belief that we are, in fact, fully redeemed.
Jesus said that through the church age, the lies of the evil one would stand side by side with His truth, appearing to be truth, and that He will not remove those lies. The King James Version of the Bible is a good example of what He meant. It is filled with truth. But standing next to the truth, looking just like the truth, are the lies of the evil one. Today is the time of their removal.
That doesn't mean that God does not speak Christ to people through the KJV; He most certainly does. God speaks through anything and everything. It just means that the KJV joins all other elements of the veil, that which blocks people from ever seeing that we may freely enter in.
Let me come back again to why God MUST place a veil before the Holy of Holies, even in the garden, even before Adam sinned.
God had created millions of species of animals; He had created millions of species of angels, and then He created one man, drawing his woman out of his side. No animal or angel is created in the image and likeness of God, only this solitary creature, man. Yet Adam was not complete.
Adam, as he was in the garden, COULD enter the Holiest of All, but only “could.” Until he ate of the tree of life, he was not yet the image of God, revealing God to creation forever; Adam was not yet complete.
Thus God placed the tree of life in the garden as His purpose and intention for man.
Inside that tree of life, inside the Holy of Holies, is the beating heart of God.
We know that God is heart for He said, “A man after My own heart.” That statement is beyond all human comprehension. It is too holy for us even to consider. “A man after My own heart” is the holiest thing in the universe; it is the Holiest of All.
It is not possible for God to share His heart with any created being, including any individual man or woman, unless they want His heart as their very life. Heart is Desire, and Desire must be awakened; it cannot be “created.” God cannot share heart with a robot.
And so God Himself placed against Adam's way, against the Way that leads to Life, the option of “being like God” without the life-layed-down requirement of sharing heart with God.
That a man lay down his life for his friends.
Do you see how holy this thing is; how can we even write about it?
Adam, by reaching out for the law, chose the easy way of being like God, trying to “act like” God himself.
Adam did not love God; he did not value God's heart above his own life. And therefore God could never share heart with Adam.
We have chosen the way of Abraham, the way of David, the way of the Lord Jesus; we are just like Him.
Now, I have said that those who share heart with God delight in holding the door wide open for all to rush into the glory of Jesus, content and overjoyed to stand in the shadows as unnoticed as the Father. But we must know the distinction that God alone makes.
God says that He is the Savior of all men. He says that the propitiation of Jesus is for the whole world. He says that Jesus will bring all creation and all mankind back into loving submission to the Father. These realities are absolute.
Adam and all of his children will come into a life of joy and goodness by the time God is finished with His great work. But few will ever know His heart; few will share heart with Him. And when I say, “few,” I speak relatively; a few out of 15 billion is still quite a few.
All Christians will know the goodness of God forever, but few will know and share His heart.
Sharing heart with God is not “elite.” God is meek and lowly of heart. Yet they enjoy, unseen by anyone else, a place inside of God that most of creation does not even know exists.
And they reveal that same heart of God to creation in a way that most Christians will never be.
God MUST protect His heart with a veil. And that veil is nothing other than an easier option, a right-there-at-hand option, for the chooser to arrive at what he or she perceives to be “the same thing.”
The grace of Passover, the outer court, serves to keep the majority out of the holy place. And the grace of the holy place, Pentecost, serves to keep the majority out of the Holiest of All. They are simply content with what they have found; they Desire nothing more. Being saved and “going to” heaven is enough for them. They have chosen the easier option.
To share heart with God is to lay down one's life for one's friends – who may well be enemies at the present moment. And that is something only God can do.
Those who attempt to “lay down their lives” apart from utter union with the Person of God inside of them are simply going for the same option of “acting like God” that Adam seized upon. Paul said that such “sacrifice” is a worthless waste of time.
Now we understand why “deeper truth” Christians, those who ARE DRAWN to the tree of life, to that calling deep inside of them, are the ones so filled with separation theology and outward “holiness.” They have stumbled at the veil; they were tempted by the “easier option.”
And that's why they do not understand the incredible joy that fills our hearts with singing.
What does it mean to share heart with God? What is it like to live utterly in the Holy of Holies?
You know, when I wrote the article, “The Second Place of Knowing God,” I knew I wanted to write a similar article titled “The Third Place of Knowing God.” I wanted to, but I had a problem.
You see, I have lived in the experience of the Holy Place in all that it means for many years. I know it well. I also have known a view into the Holiest through all those years, thus I know of its reality. But my problem was that I knew I could not invite people into the Third Place of Knowing God with the same warm familiarity simply because I have never actually lived nor walked together with a people who lived in the Holiest.
I know and declare that I sit there with Christ upon the throne of heaven, but there is an element of experience and knowing to which I had not yet arrived.
As of this Feast of Tabernacles season in the year 2012, building on the knowing of God He gave to me during the Feast of Tabernacles season in the year 2011, I, for the first time in my life, know with personal familiarity, what it means to share heart with God. I am taking my first baby steps in this beyond wonderful relationship of utter union with this beyond incredible Person who fills me full.
Christ as me itself is beyond wonderful, but Father God filling me full, that's beyond our ability to speak.
Yet I will only go forward into the all-enveloping heart of God, and in my role as a map-maker, a marker of the path, this precious gift God has granted me to share with you with all my heart. And I will continue on in the Covenant, exploring somehow, beyond what words can tell, the glory of the Ark of the Covenant, and that Beyond All, the Mercy Seat.
I have found a man after My own heart.
I have found a man after My own heart.