27. The Song of the Beast
There is an essential difference, however, between the song of Adam and the song of the beast. The song of Adam is the song of the individualized self. That story is manifestly untrue, even to those who sing it the hardest. And in a world filled with selfs, all singing an untrue story, knowing that it is untrue, yet trying very hard to act as a god, capable and wise, yet pressing up against other selfs singing the same empty song, another story, another song arises among men, the song of the group. The song of the group is the song of the beast.
27. The Song of the Beast
And he was given a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies, and he was given authority to continue for forty-two months. Then he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme His name, His tabernacle, and those who dwell in heaven. It was granted to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them. And authority was given him over every tribe, tongue, and nation. All who dwell on the earth will worship him... Revelation 13:5-8
Let me repeat the song of Adam I sketched out earlier. “I am here, all by myself. I am weak and afraid. Weak is bad. I want things that I do not have. I can get those things only when I am strong. Strong is good. I don't like myself; I don't like being weak. When I put on a strong face, when I make people think I am strong, then I get the things I want.”
God created His image weak in order to contain God Himself in Person. Adam was ashamed of himself; ashamed of the weakness of his flesh. Let me define weak. Human weakness is the inability to do what God says as a separate self. The liar says, “All that the Lord says, I will do.” He is a pretender; he will not; he cannot.
The song of Adam is the normal, tired, and weary story told by all selfs living as selfs, trying so very hard to do what God says, because “I can.” No “you” can't.
When God created angels, He created them able to obey His outward commands as their very nature. When God created animals, He created them able to obey His outward commands as their very nature.
When God created man, His image, He designed man essentially different.
God created man to be filled with all the fulness of God in Person and to release God to all as rivers of living water. God created man to be His body, His image, His visible expression to both heaven and earth. That relationship between God and man, a relationship of fused oneness, yet with no loss of personal integrity, can happen only by a quality, a power, a connection that God calls faith.
Angels obey God, although they are not filled with God. Animals obey God, although they are not filled with God. Man is NOT real except He be filled full with all of God.
We look at Adam to know what we are not; but we cannot look at Adam to know what we are. Adam never discovered himself; he never ate of life. Adam never became a real human being.
Jesus told Paul, “My ability to do what God says is perfect only inside of your inability to do what God says.” It is a total transfer of self. Thus “learning obedience” can come only out of the perfection of Christ made known through our total inability.
We cannot be under Christ, we cannot “make Him Lord,” there is no such thing for man. It is a complete transfer only, self for Self, life for Life. We are simply gone, and Jesus has taken our place. Christ is all first, BEFORE anything not Christ vanishes away. Yet the incredible mystery is that, having vanished, having been replaced by Jesus, we discover that we are yet alive, that we are honored by Jesus entirely inside of Himself.
Then, out from His Person living as us, He Himself transforms us into all the obedience of Christ regardless of our outward appearance or judgment.
However, there is a great danger in still being alive inside of Jesus. That great danger is that we would reach back to the imagination of Adam and re-imagine the weight of self. Our salvation is our continual sinking into Christ Jesus as our only self. Therefore I cannot speak of myself as anything other than all that Christ is. Yet inside that total perfection God walks together with me through all difficulty, teaching and bringing forth from my innermost being all the obedience of Christ.
There is an essential difference, however, between the song of Adam and the song of the beast. The song of Adam is the song of the individualized self. That story is manifestly untrue, even to those who sing it the hardest. And in a world filled with selfs, all singing an untrue story, knowing that it is untrue, yet trying very hard to act as a god, capable and wise, yet pressing up against other selfs singing the same empty song, another story, another song arises among men, the song of the group.
The song of the group is the song of the beast. The song of Adam is the song of the individual, “I am here, all by myself. I am weak and afraid. Weak is bad. I want things that I do not have. I can get those things only when I am strong. Strong is good. I don't like myself; I don't like being weak. When I put on a strong face, when I make people think I am strong, then I get the things I want.”
The words that turn the song of Adam into the song of the beast are these, “when I make people think I am strong.” All group-think comes out of individuals trying to make others think they are real. The song of self is untrue and deadly; the song of the group is even more untrue and far more deadly.
There is no group. There are only lost human beings and Christ.
In this letter, I want to delineate, as clearly as I can, the song of the group that everyone is being pressed into now, in our day, the blasphemy of the beast.
Remember that the vision of John is about two things. 1. The normal Christ life, and 2. The normal life not Christ. Blasphemy is far more normal in the world and in the church than Christ. This is so very important to understand. The Nicene Christ attempts to cast the elements of John's vision as things highly unusual, a Christ far, far away from lowly man, and a not-Christ far, far away from our ordinary lives. In other words, just as the “Christ” of the Nicene Creed does not exist, so the not-Christ of that same story does not exist.
Christ and anti-Christ are both common, ordinary, and very, very familiar.
Here are some expressions of the song of the beast, the speaking of blasphemy. “We are the world.” “Come together, right now, over me.” “One nation, under God, indivisible.” (Pure blasphemy.) “I'm just following orders.” “For God and country.” “God bless America.” Do you see how ordinary the blasphemy of the beast really is?
And yet the press coming against all, forcing everyone into a binding collective is much stronger today than this ordinary background noise. It is pressing against you, even if you may not recognize it. As sons of God, we must be wise as serpents, though harmless as doves.
The beast, human government, in reality is just a bunch of wicked men and women gathering together in various groupings and at various levels in order to exercise power over the masses for the sole purpose of feeling powerful. The feeling of power over is the highest drug known to Adam's sorry whine. Even in a government such as the United States there are many differing gangs all fighting and scrapping at each other, showing a united front only to deceive the masses. Thus some see, with compelling evidence, the present Snowden affair to be little more than a turf war between the CIA and the NSA over money because money means power.
Please understand the world. Every face of government exists ONLY to hide the most wicked and illegal deeds perpetrated by individuals behind that face. When someone “feels good” about the American government or any other human authority structure forcing a group, they are simply aiding those sick individuals, allowing them to continue their deeds, actions the “feel-gooders” willfully refuse to see.
Do you understand that the Taliban of Afghanistan eliminated heroin production in 2000-2001. The flow of heroin and heroin money almost ceased, causing widespread financial collapse in New York and London, and thus all of our incomes. By the spring of 2001 the US government had the full plan in place to take out the Taliban for that reason. The invasion of Afghanistan in November of 2001 allowed for the planting of a vast crop of opium early the next spring with the 2003 crop the largest in history, tended under the watch-care of US troops.
That river of heroin was then and now directed fully into Russia as a weapon of war to weaken its population. The Russian government recognizes it as a continual act of war, but can do nothing about it because of our nuclear bombs. Americans have no idea the hatred against Russia found in those who control this country and the immense thirst for revenge. Americans have no idea that the disciples of Leon Trotsky rule the United States.
And yet, I sat in a class of educators, listening to a Christian educator in Lubbock, Texas, in 2002, state that we had gone into Afghanistan, thank God, to put a stop to the heroin – for the sake of our children. A spring blew out of my brain as I sat their hardly believing what I had just heard, a willful refusal to look at the obvious wickedness behind “God bless America.”
That is one tiny example among thousands, all similar, many far worse.
The people who climb to the top, especially in modern democratic power structures, are simply the worst people on earth. But the puppet figures we see are rarely the real manipulators of that power structure.
However, the few people who get off on power over are a tiny minority of people. Those who suffer long under their abuse far outnumber them. The only possible way this tiny minority of controllers could ever maintain their place is to create a concept of “oneness,” of belonging, of group identity, so that everyone imagines a share in the drug of power over. This delusion is best known as a collective. It exists in imagination only, but it is overwhelmingly powerful.
The majority of people just go-along to get along. Yet by doing so, they are the enablers of cruelty and abuse and things far worse than that. That's why God said, “Come out of her My people, so that you do not participate in her sins, so that you do not share in her plagues.”
Every single person in America would see their income drop immediately to less than half, doing the same work, if the sale of pornography, of drugs, of weapons of war, and outright theft from other countries by the government should cease. If you receive an income as an American, you are a participant in her sins. We walk knowing that God placed us where we are and that Christ swallows up all darkness, but those who call the wickedness “Christian,” bind themselves to the iniquity and thus to its consequences.
Thus the true nature of “the beast” is simply an imaginative delusion that is best termed “group-think.”
It matters not what group you assemble, whether a gang of teenage boys on the street of an inner city or an entire nation or an eldership board in a church, group-think always operates exactly the same way. The power structure of the public school, state – superintendent – principals – teachers – kids, operated in the same way as the power structure inside the gangs of black and Hispanic teenage boys I saw in those same schools. In exactly the same way and with exactly the same mind, with exactly the same arguments and for exactly the same purposes.
Because of the nature of Asperger's, I was oblivious to group-think through the first forty years of my life. I simply tootled along in my own little world, completely unaware of the ripples and currents of face against face flowing all around me, never understanding how or why every time I was hit by the pain and confusion group-think always brings to individual people. Some people think I ought to “get healed”; I don't.
I first saw group-think in full operation when I sat among the elders of a move community as an elder with them. I was stunned and shattered by what I saw. I could not sell myself; I could not become part of such a thing. Yet just a few years later, I became the administrator of the disciplinary unit in the public school for one semester and thus sat momentarily with the other administrators as “one of them.” When I saw the exact same lying to self, the exact same shenanigans of manipulation and disrespect that I saw in the community eldership, I was so devastated by it. I came home and sat in great sobbing cries as my wife held and comforted me.
I neither said nor did anything contrary, but those same administrators threw me out because I did not play their game.
All group-think is the mask of faces people wear in order to hide the tremendous disrespect shown to individual persons and to hide the titillation, the beating on the chest, the religious-sexual stimulation people feel when they momentarily push someone else down.
It is the beast.
It rules the church of Christ entirely out from the belief that Jesus is absent from the earth, far away in heaven somewhere, and that He lied when He said, “Whatever you do to the least of these My brethren, you ARE doing it to Me.”
In this letter, I hope to shine just a bit of light on the nature and meaning and power of group-think, of the collective identity, of the number and mark and name of the beast as it has come to its fullness now in our day. You see, group-think is the beast ruling over the church, this desire to force our brother to do and to be what we think he ought to do and to be because, by God, we read it “in the Bible,” and this desire to put on the same show of face when we turn to protect ourselves from those who are more vicious than we.
Yet a far greater evil comes when that same beast, as the face of the church of Christ, seeks to climb up onto the governmental systems of this world, to ride the secular beast, to direct and manipulate its wicked cruelty – for Jesus' sake, of course. The church of Jesus Christ riding the beast is the saddest picture there is.
Group think establishes itself and draws from three different arenas, yet always blending those three together as one. One arena we can call nationalism, the second religion, and the third economics: the political power, the religious power, and the economic power. All three work closely together to form the collective mind forced upon every individual person alive, contrary to the claims of Christ.
Remember that the entire purpose of group-think is to give those who get off on disrespecting people a cover for their stimulation so that it is never exposed and so that they can get off on it again tomorrow. I'm trying to make it as explicit as I can, because, in the end, that's all it is. Power over produces the highest orgasm Adam knows; it is NOTHING more than that. That's why the male sex-organ is the most common carved idol in history and in the world today. In that brief moment of the highest stimulation, Adam and Eve “feel” most like a god.
Every feeling of patriotism, every feeling of greed, or its far more evil counterpart, envy, every feeling of religious belonging exists solely to hide this most base momentary “feeling” of godhood.
That's why God calls, “one nation, under god, indivisible,” the blasphemy of the beast.
Every single argument as to how the United States of America is a “Christian nation,” – and I know those arguments well – and that it has some sort of covenant with God comes entirely out of one book, and that book is not the New Testament. That book is, you guessed it, Augustine's City of God.
Augustine spends the majority of that book arguing as to why and how the church of Christ ought to control the kingdoms of men in this world. His argument was that the church, always in place of an absent Christ, fulfills the kingdom of God by establishing a natural order of human society in this present world.
Augustine argues that God placed the church into this world to form the world into the kingdom of God. The Apostle John argues that God placed the church into this world to know Christ and His kingdom by knowing Christ in spite of the world, by victory over the world. Most Christians agree with Augustine, even though they know they must twist and force John's words under submission in order to do so. They know that they must bend the words of the New Testament to fit the Nicene Christ in order to be accepted by the face of the group as a respectable Christian. If they actually go with what John and Paul say, they will be branded a heretic and shunned by all.
Because of Augustine, the beast of our day, the fullness of that beast, has full manipulative power over the church and can entice her to do whatever they want. She will bend over backwards to please the beast; yet the whole desire of those wicked men and women behind the false face of that beast is to destroy her, to burn her flesh with fire.
Money is to power as gasoline is to fire. Money is the fuel that power burns in order to produce its heat and do its work. Money is no more evil than gasoline and is more useful to our lives than gasoline. The problem is the love of the power money brings. But the problem is power over inside of Adam's empty lust, not money itself.
Computers seem to us to be exceedingly complex, and in most ways they are. Yet all a computer ever does is count two things, off or on. Thus the base reasoning of a computer is identical to Morse Code, reading the series of – off, off, off, on – or – on, off, off, on, on, off – and so on.
All human interaction – ALL human interaction – consists of only two things. Either I respect you or I do not. ALL description of all economic, religious, or political interaction is a description of only two things, either person A respects person B or person A disrespects person B. You can multiply that to seven billion humans interacting with seven billion humans, but it's all the same one thing.
I am continually astonished and flabbergasted at how easily and frequently Christians disrespect other individuals. Yet it is just too easy for me to do the same.
I teach over and over that we do not put our hand to our own transformation, but we acknowledge the transformation always flowing out of the perfection of Christ that we already are. Yet I find for myself that it is right for me to actively work together with God and He with me to alter one thing in my life. That is, to stop myself when I am about to show any form of disrespect to another and to make myself speak and act in full respect of them. That's why God gives us wives and husbands, as the primary arena of revealing Christ.
Jesus said it this way: This is My commandment, that you love one another.
But Paul brought that same word into the realm of human economics: Owe no man anything except to love one another. And Paul also brought that same word into the realm of human politics: Those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. Jesus, however, was the One who placed that word into the realm of human religion: Do unto others what you would have them do unto you – and thus fulfill all the law and the prophets.
There are five terms that define the entire range of human psychology as applied to economic relationships between people.
Self-interest – Sloth – Ambition – Greed – Envy
At the same time, there are two words that can be used to name the two extremes, particularly as those extremes are found in human political interactions, but that also work for the two extremes in religious interactions and economic interactions.
Freedom – Communism
All human interactions are one on one. You never interact with a group because “the group” is only ever a false face in the imagination of the mind. You only ever interact with individuals; even if there are three other individuals in the same room with you, your interaction remains individual to individual. Notice how easy it is to respond to one differently from how you respond to another. And if disrespect enters, even if it comes only from one to one, yet in that instant, everyone puts on a mask. The exercise of disrespect in any form is a deadly blow to love.
Love comes only out of freedom; freedom comes only out of love; they are the same thing.
You see, we cannot define self-interest in today's world without also defining communism. The two are mortal enemies. Envy is the individual opposition to self-interest, but envy always hides behind a group mask and that group mask is best described by the word “communism,” so long as we remove all the fiery connotations modern conversation forces upon that word.
Self-interest is this, “I make my own decisions for my life in this world.” In equal measure, I respect fully that you make your own decisions for your life in this world.” The two always go together; they can never exist separately.
The opposite of self-interest is one thing only – some other human or group of humans makes my decisions for me and tells me what I will do against the penalty of inflicted pain.
Aristocracy is when I am told what I will do by another individual. Communism is when I am told what I will do by a group. Communism is when a committee of experts makes decisions for other people, people they neither know nor regard. Religion is when I am told what I will do by either an individual or a group – but with God as the weapon that will inflict the pain, with a little help from his friends.
Christ is being led by that spirit that is inside of me. I cannot be led by the Spirit apart from freedom. I cannot give my body to God if I have signed it over to a human group. God accepts nothing by obligation. He accepts only faith, and faith responds only to an invitation; faith is only freely given.
Faith is the highest expression of self-interest.
The very act of forcing another to obey one's own decree over them is disrespect, it is aggression, it is satanism.
I say that, however, with the arenas of godly contractual arrangements completely outside of that statement. When a boss instructs his employees or a parent children or a teacher students, they are not “forcing” others to obey their decisions in that way – BUT ONLY when they do so in full respect and honor of each other person.
There is no difference between a teacher disrespecting his students and Lucifer disrespecting God.
Godly leadership comes only out of a life laid down, placing one's self beneath of each other, seeing each individual person AS the Lord Jesus Himself – because they ARE.
Now, the Anglo-Saxon response to aristocracy, as it transferred itself to America, contained an element of reasoning in complete opposition to all other human response to the abuse of power over. I say “contained,” because this opposite was at all times surrounded by the normal even in America from the beginning. To a large extent, this opposite came out from the Quakers.
In 1600's England, at the same time and place that today's beast began its slow climb out of the sea, George Fox and the Quakers were to the Anglican power structure what a group dubbed “the Levelers” were to the social power structure. Yet both Quakers and Levelers were the complete opposite of all communism.
Both groups made this claim. If one is a Lord, all should be lords. The rights and honor and respect granted to any Lord should also be granted to every individual person. As Peter said, “We are all priests of God.”
In America, the answer to European aristocracy was to make every individual person a lord and a king in his own right, with all honor and respect due each individual that was formerly reserved only to kings.
This way of thinking was found in the Pilgrims, but opposed by the Puritans. It was found among the Quakers, but opposed by the landed aristocracy of America, including, when push came to shove, George Washington. It was found in those who opposed the Constitution before it was ratified and thus demanded the addition of the bill of rights, commanding the newly formed government to treat each individual person with the same rights accorded to any king. It was opposed by those who pushed that same Constitution through, knowing that the power and conniving of greed would easily overwhelm the weakness of respect.
This rare response to the abuse of power over occurring this one time in human history, a response that simply does not exist in today's world including in the Christian church, that is, the idea that everyone should be raised up to the honor and respect of lords – freedom – is counteracted by that other, far more virulent, far more powerful leveling force that takes the opposite tack – let's drag everyone down to the lowest common denominator. If one is without, if one is abused, then all should be without, all should be disrespected and abused – communism.
Now I want to come back to those five economic terms.
Self-interest – Sloth – Ambition – Greed – Envy
Let me define self-interest. I would never impose my druthers, my inclinations, my ideas of what “you should do” upon you to force you to bend your own heart to my fancy. Such a thought, that you would be so violated by me is such a horror to me. In equal measure, more than once in my life, I have walked away from everything, losing everything, in order not to surrender my own integrity and respect to abuse.
I dreamed of being an elder in the move of God for twenty years and I walked away from it, losing everything because I will not surrender my own integrity to abuse. I dreamed of being a school administrator for the next seven years. That one I was thrown out of because I would not surrender my own integrity to abuse.
In equal measure that I will not surrender my integrity to the abuse of any other person or group, in that same measure, I abhor any imposition of my fancy upon you and in that same measure I abhor any violation of any other individual's self-interest by any other individual and especially by that false and filthy thing, the group.
When I see an authority figure claiming the power of government/god, pointing a gun at another human being and ordering them down on their face on the ground, all in order to preserve his own life and the strutting stimulation of his own pleasure, I become very angry. When it's on TV, I come close to destroying my own TV. That anger is the anger of God in me.
I tell you what. If this wicked and arrogant nation had committed no other sin, the evil and horrific deed we did against Aafia Siddiqui and her children, the wicked thing we continue to do to her, is enough bile in the throat of God to send destruction upon this entire nation. We sit in our “thank God we're free” and commit such vile acts of injustice against, not just Aafia Siddiqui, but countless others, each an individual person, each the image of God, each the Lord Jesus Christ to us.
How many fathers, how many mothers, how many sisters, how many brothers, how many sons, how many daughters, must we blow out their brains so that we can run around in our drunkenness shouting, “Thank God, we're free”? People claim that God is not angry with abuse and cruelty, covering wickedness over with self-righteousness. I cannot comprehend that claim. Swallowing up such cruelty inside of love and life is a terrible, terrible act. Only the cross of Christ could ever do such a devastating thing.
I have defined self-interest, let's proceed to ambition. Ambition is the strongest force for material good inside of present human interaction. As a father observing my children, I am so blessed when I see self-interest rising to ambition. But when I see ambition not yet finding its root, I wait with patience until it does.
Ambition brings home the bread for everyone else. Looking back at my life, I see that all the good I have done for others came out of the driving ambition of my nature. I was told for years that it was “fleshy” and not godly by people who benefited from my drive. I am so glad we no longer live in that sickness of thinking.
Entrepreneurs are the real heroes of natural society. The profits they obtain turn into the surplus that all the rest of us enjoy. They certainly deserve to have more than others. If you remove ambition from human society, then we will all be laboring twelve hours a day, six days a week to drag our food out of the ground. The cause of all human poverty is the mechanisms of disrespect filling group-think that work to tear down anyone who seeks to better his or her life. Put a bunch of crabs in a wire basket with a wide-open top and none will escape. If an individual crab attempts to pull itself up the wire sides, the others will be sure to pull it back down again.
Entrepreneurs pull more people out of poverty than all Christian charity or government spending put together.
Envy hates human abundance and pleasure. “If I have nothing, no one else should have anything either.” Envy is the power of communism, the nature of Lucifer. Most who become politicians are not driven by greed, but by envy; they cannot bear the thought that people would make their own decisions for their own lives.
But ambition does stumble under two weights always tugging at it. One is sloth, the other is greed. A slothful man is neither greedy nor envious. So long as a bit of the overflow from the ambitious showers him with a modicum of comfort, the slothful man is quite content. Greed, on the other hand, directs ambition towards unjustly seizing for self what is due to or what belongs to another. Successful businessmen know that greed is as destructive to their wealth as sloth, that more profit is made as they help and respect both customer and employee than otherwise.
Aristocracy comes more out of greed than envy. Communism and unrestrained democracy come out of envy.
Now, in all this discussion of “philosophy,” I am, in fact, getting at the very essence and core of the beast now sitting upon our entire world and invading every one of our lives. I am describing the roots of its name and its number. You see, you hear some government official on TV explaining why the government needs this or that power to “protect us all.” You will believe him ONLY if you do not KNOW that there are only two types of interactions upon this planet, one human 1. respecting or 2.disrespecting one other human – Christ or Satan. When you understand the name of the beast, you are not taken in by his “wise” face and his compelling words.
The single strongest intrusion of communism into American life and experience is the public school. I discovered that whatever the public school did wrong, the private Christian school, following the tenets of modern education, did that same wrong better.
Modern education, whether public or Christian, indoctrinates all to believe that every good thing coming to us in life comes from the government. That is, that our lives are made better when a committee of far-away experts tell everyone what to do and punish with pain those who will not obey. Almost every writing prompt I saw in the public college asked the student to discuss how “people should be required to.” The idea of ever respecting and honoring one's neighbor is removed from all minds and hearts. It is removed by a continual regimen of disrespect.
“No child left behind,” is the highest form of envy expressed in American education. Not one child will escape from our expert claws, but we will succeed in dragging every single one down into our collective, confused, glassy-eyed, and obedient glob.
Communist envy wins the victory in human society by defining “self-interest” as greed. The beast, the ruling elite, knows that people like myself who are willing to turn their backs on everything they have worked hard for and walk away solely to preserve their own self-integrity and their family from abuse are the most dangerous enemies of the beast walking the earth. Thus they send out the continual story, coming through every means of communication in today's world, that self-interest is, in fact, GREED, and that freedom is the enemy of us all.
No one can be allowed to say, “No, I will not.” Everyone must be cowed into the group. You see, that's how the wicked individuals behind the facade can get away with their enjoyment of cruel actions against others.
That is all it is. It is a beast.
I have three recent articles you could read from two different individuals who are saying the same thing as I, though from entirely different viewpoints. The first two are by Jon Rappaport, the third by Butler Shaffer.
But I want to close out with God's answer to the beast.
These are the ones who follow the Lamb wherever He goes. These were redeemed from among men, being firstfruits to God and to the Lamb. And in their mouth was found no deceit (KJ – without guile), for they are without fault before the throne of God. Revelation 14:4-5
Without guile means RESPECT going fully in both directions in equal measure all the time. Full respect for myself and full respect for you. Full respect for you and full respect for myself. – And both of us convinced that God orders all things; He is in no way absent. Jesus walks this earth.
Having His Father’s name written on their foreheads. Revelation 14:1
They are just like God; they are the body of Christ Himself.