The God of heaven and earth is a God who searches to inform people of their sinful nature. He is not a God who refrains from letting His thoughts be made known to men. He does not have any reason to hide his reasoning, especially in a time when sin and rebellion are at their peak. It is widely understood that it is God who dictates times and epochs. It is also known that God understands and watches every sin that men commit on this earth. Therefore, He is constantly able to judge. At the right time He judges, because He is able to wait for the right time. The work of God in the city of Shinar is a vivid example of His knowledge and understanding of the nature of man. The sin of man did not go unpunished. When God finished His work in Shinar, the city was called Babel. The city that was before was no longer the same after God’s judgment. It was called the city of confusion or Babel. They had to stop building the city, since through His work God put an end to their abomination. How men can abuse freedom is seen from the people of Shinar. To abuse the freedom that God has given man has been inherently received from Adam. Therefore, every man undoubtedly sins.
As long as the mind of man is unoccupied with the intent of God, he continues to sin. When the people of Shinar were building the tower, it was a work that God did not approve. Yet, they chose to build it, since their minds were occupied by every thought, except God. It is for this reason that God gave the Law to Israel i.e. that they would be occupied with the intent of God rather than the works of sin. What the people of Shinar did without the Law God did not desire to see in Israel. Yet, Israel ignored the Law by not occupying their minds with it. Therefore, it came to the point where God had to inform people of their sin, and He said to His prophet, “Son of man, make known to Jerusalem her abominations” (Ezek. 16:2). God chose to inform His people of their sin, since it will be imputed on them on account of the Law. If imputed, would lead to death. Yet, prior to the Law, those who sinned and could not be informed of it received death. As Paul in the Spirit elsewhere says, where there is no Law sin cannot be accounted for, even so when sin is not informed or made known there exists no opportunity to return. What essentially came about through the Law is the opportunity to return. However, the only shortcoming of the Law was that it did not offer man’s conscience the kind of grace that came through Jesus Christ. Though the Law acted severely on its people it was only after God had informed them of their sin. On the contrary, the absence of the Law was much more severe on people when they were never informed of their sin and had no opportunity to return. “Where there is no vision, the people are unrestrained, but happy is he who keeps the law” (Prov. 29:18).
What better way to understand than from the words of the wise man of God! Now, one can perhaps grasp the necessity of God’s revelation, whether to Israel in the form of the Law or to Christians in the form of Christ. It is because of the presence of the revelation or vision of God that men are still able to receive His forgiveness. One who seeks forgiveness of sin after being instructed from the law (the word) is restrained from sin and the one who has been keeping it is inevitably happy. Nonetheless, the greatest problem for God’s people today is the lack of vision. I do not mean to indicate the absence of instruction or the word, but the understanding of it. For being unable to understand the word of God is just the same as not having the vision or revelation from God. The result of this is predictable – people are unrestrained. They do whatever comes to their mind and speak whatever their flesh inspires them. For this reason, there are seen many in the churches of Christ and of God that falsely speak of Christ, His God, His intent and His works. What is the outcome? Belief in God has been distorted and in many cases abandoned. They have become unrestrained like the people of Shinar and are performing that which does not have the approval of God. As far as their wisdom of God is concerned it has gone back to the Stone Age. Now, the gentiles who instinctively perform the law of Christ are more in the right than they. When the churches preach against the works of God while not grasping the mysteriousness of them and the dire need for them, when they interpret the word by their mind and not by being filled with the Spirit, when they call for presumptuous motion between genders in the church, they have become worse than those who observed the Law i.e. like those before the Law. For if the law of Christ is better than the Law of Moses and if so they believe, it indeed speaks for better faith and complete works, has greater wisdom, understanding and unswerving impartiality.
It is better for those who cannot understand the greater law of Christ to leave the work to those who actually do understand. It is not worth obstructing the way of those who are striving for Christ and are willing to fully believe in God. It is only fitting for those who have been appointed by God through His calling to build a house of His choice. His choice house is full of faith, righteousness, Spirit and truth. Therefore, understand these words for the present times. “Leave this work on the house of God alone; let the governor of the Jews and the elders of the Jews rebuild this house of God on its site” (Ezra 6:7). Yet, which of them is willing to leave their work to allow the faithful to restore it to its original form or which of them will abandon their ungifted doctrines to embrace the gifted truth? Though I wish to say all, there will be none. Then again, I wish to be wrong. But, the truth of Christ is gifted and ungifted doctrines cannot change lives, bring peace, joy or create belief for God’s unfathomable works. Nonetheless, there must be one who speaks for Christ. There needs to be present a man of God. With the kind of teachings many present day churches are producing there is definitely a shortage for men of God.
There are countless men pretending to be of God, who speak from excessive knowledge, with flamboyance and appear as insipid before the gifted truth. “Then Samuel died; and all Israel gathered together and mourned for him, and buried him at his house in Ramah. And David arose and went down to the wilderness of Paran” (1 Sam. 25:1). The state of many present day churches resemble the void created in Israel after the death of the prophet Samuel. So void it was that Saul went and inquired a medium. Even so are the present churches that claim to be of Christ, and their medium has become the knowledge acquired according to the flesh. One has to be an utter ignorant to fail to predict the outcome of seeking a medium. Therefore, it is vital that these churches return to the Lord by hearing His message while there is still an opportunity. While the days prior to the Law did not provide any opportunity to return and the days under the Law were severe, the days under the law of Christ are full of grace and mercy to all who desire to come to the Lord. The longer you delay the greater the danger your teachings, beliefs and works will present. For not only will you be in danger of missing God’s grace and mercy, but with your stubbornness will also put your children in danger. You put them in danger, because the lack of gifted truth of Christ in you will make them behave like the gentiles. A lot can be learned from the commands of former days. “You shall not behave thus toward the LORD your God, for every abominable act which the LORD hates they have done for their gods; for they even burn their sons and daughters in the fire to their gods” (Deut. 12:31). The lack of gifted truth of Christ in you will reveal to your children the nature of gentiles in you and so, they shall become one with the world.
It is the nature of those who cannot believe in God to perform every abominable act. But, the gifted truth of Christ will perform wonders to those who unswervingly believe in it. To perform abominable acts will never approve the reality of heaven or the hope of it. The greatest joy for Christians is to be able to spurn all the acts the Lord hates. These acts are present everywhere, since they that constantly do them are always around us. To have seen those acts and then to have spurned them is the glory we give to our God. A false teaching too is an abominable act, the kind that burns sons and daughters in the fire; for it will lead to death, a death which is by fire. For such a time you are now preparing yourself and your children if you embrace ungifted doctrines. “Speak to the sons of Israel and say to them, ‘When any man of you brings an offering to the LORD, you shall bring your offering of animals from the herd or the flock” (Lev. 1:2). Whether it was in the Old Testament days or the New Testament days God always desired the best offerings. There it was from animals, but here and now it is the best from within us. If there is an offering that Christians can give to the Lord, it is certainly not from animals, but an offering that comes from the heart.
For when the Israelites were required to offer, they were commanded to offer from the herd or flock, since the greater the number the better the choice to give the best. The Lord God has provided each of you with many things. You yourself are astonished when you begin to count them. Yet, He desires only one thing from you, which is to believe fully in His one and only Son and His word. This is your best offering to the Lord. This belief will give the necessary understanding and will enable God to inform you of your sins. This will save you. For in this way your children shall also see the grace of God. One thing must be understood. If one cannot offer belief from His heart to God, he is like the one that foolishly initiated a battle he cannot win. He has neither measured his strength nor counted his odds to win the battle. He has become arrogant. This shall take everything away from him, even his life. “Then Amaziah sent messengers to Jehoash, the son of Jehoahaz son of Jehu, king of Israel, saying, ‘Come, let us face each other’” (2 Kings 14:8).