He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches [Greek: 'ekklesia']. Revelation 2:7 EMTV
It is a known fact that God created man with ears. These funny looking organs on the side of our heads have the ability to receive sounds that the brain interprets for our minds which are a storehouse for information. What an amazing function! And what an amazing God to create every one of our bodily functions that work in such perfect harmony as a whole!
Why, then, would Jesus say "He who has an ear, let him hear . . ."? He knew that we all have ears, so what was His concern? What did He know, that we don't, that might interfere with our hearing?
We see all around us evidence of impaired hearing. This is not in reference to actual hearing, as we know it, but to the grasping of reality. It is found not only in the "church" but also in the "world." Although we could point to any one of numerous things as the culprit, there is one in particular that is a major influence in the widespread apostasy in the "church," as well as wickedness in the world.
As we dig a little deeper, we will learn what this 'Stunning' Revelation is.
Lest anyone think I am suggesting I have a "stunning" revelation that is superior to most, let me assure you it is as much a play on words as it is factual. The Lord gave me the title to use, but more importantly, there is a message He wants us to hear with our ears. For understanding, we will look at both the physical and the spiritual.
In early 2008, my husband and I attended a health seminar where the speaker was a medical doctor turned naturopath. Something fascinating he said has stuck with me. This is what he said: "If we listen to our body when it whispers we won't have to listen to it scream." As I related the saying to a local naturopath recently, the Lord spoke to me and this article was birthed.
What excellent advice the doctor gave! But what could stand in the way of our hearing our bodies?
Since the seminar speaker was a doctor, and the topic was health, this leads us to a passage in Revelation where we find the word "sorceries." What is the connection? As we often find, it is in the old language definitions. The Greek word from which sorceries was translated holds the key to the physical aspect of our message. Pharmakeia literally means "medication ('pharmacy')." That word is taken from another Greek word, "pharmakeus," which is defined, "From pharmakon (a drug, that is, spell giving potion); a druggist ("pharmacist") or poisoner."
What an interesting definition, and a revealing one at that! A spell giving potion would certainly have a profound effect on the body, as I've learned from experience.
After a 3-month stay in hospital in 2003, during which I suffered Severe Sepsis and the subsequent kidney failure, among other things, I was sent home with several prescriptions. One was for blood pressure and another was Prednisone, both of which left me feeling anything but "myself." I could not get off those drugs fast enough! But I did it gradually, of course. I truly did not need either one, as was proven over time through further blood tests. It was so wonderful to once again "hear" my body and know what it needed nutritionally, as God intended when He created us. His plan was not for us to ingest poisons as the present-day pharmaceutical companies would have us believe. It is far easier to listen to our bodies when there is no spell to dull the hearing.
But what of our spiritual ears? Do we have ears to hear what the Holy Spirit is saying to the ekklesia of whom we are part? What does the Bible show us? Is there something specific that affects our spiritual ears?
Dull of hearing
Jesus' disciples asked Him why He spoke in parables to the crowds who gathered around Him. In response, He said this:
To you it has been given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given. For whoever has, to him more shall be given, and he shall be in abundance; but whoever does not have, even what he has shall be taken away from him. Therefore I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand. Matthew 13:11-13 EMTV
Jesus then quoted words spoken by the prophet Isaiah, some of which we find in the fifteenth verse. "For this people's heart is waxed gross, And their ears are dull of hearing, And their eyes they have closed; Lest haply they should perceive with their eyes, And hear with their ears, And understand with their heart, And should turn again, And I should heal them." (KJV) The words "waxed gross" come from the Greek word pachuno¯ which means "to thicken, that is, (by implication) to fatten (figuratively stupefy or render callous)." The word stupefy means "to bring into a state of stupor; stun; make dull or lethargic," according to Webster's. "Stupor" is defined as "mental or moral dullness or apathy."
If the people's hearts were stupefied or rendered callous in Jesus' day, what would He say of the hearts of people today? How many thousands--even millions--of people have been stupefied into a state of complacency through the "preaching" of apostate doctrines? How many believe they are born again because they heard an anemic "gospel" that is devoid of the message of the Cross of Jesus Christ, and were simply led in a "sinner's prayer?" The numbers are staggering, yet countless souls continue to follow televangelists with their offers of "hope" as they blindly dole out their prosperity messages, or the deception that they will be "raptured" out with no suffering. The most popular messages today are those that appeal to the flesh of people who, like their idol preachers, seem to be inextricably entrapped in the knowledge of good and evil. Their "god" is one they see as sitting in the heavens just waiting to shower them with the best of everything--they simply must demand it of him, or so they are taught.
Where is the humility and brokenness? Where are the preachers who passionately ask, "Where will you spend eternity?" Where is the acknowledgment of a Holy God who lovingly waits to purge us of every obstacle in our lives that would prevent the complete regeneration necessary for eternity with Jesus? Could it be they have never experienced the fire of the Holy Spirit's purging? What is in store for the souls who are stupefied and don't even recognize it?
Furnace of fire
Another of Jesus' parables, also found in the thirteenth chapter of Matthew, is the parable of the tares. The word "tares" is not just any weed, but a particular one known as "darnel," according to the Greek word translated "tares." Webster's dictionary defines darnel as "stupefied." It goes on to say that this weedy rye grass often occurs in grain fields, and "when its seeds are infested with a certain fungus, they become poisonous."
Keeping in mind the definition of tares is "stupefied," let us read the parable.
The kingdom of heaven is like a man sowing good seed in his field. But while the men were sleeping, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat and went away. But when the stalk had sprouted and produced fruit, then the tares also appeared. So the servants of the master of the house approached and said to him, 'Sir, was it not good seed you sowed in your field? From where then does it have tares?' He said to them, 'An enemy has done this.' So the servants said to him, 'Do you wish then that we should go and gather them up?' But he said, 'No, lest gathering up the tares you also uproot the wheat with them. Leave both to grow together until the harvest; and at the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, First gather together the tares, and bind them into bundles to burn them, but gather together the wheat into my barn.' Matthew 13:24b-30 EMTV
When Jesus explained the parable to His disciples, He put it this way:
He that sows the good seed is the Son of Man. And the field is the world, and the good seed, these are the sons of the kingdom, but the tares are the sons of the evil one. The enemy who sowed them is the devil, the harvest is the end of the age, and the reapers are the angels. Therefore just as the tares are gathered and burned with fire, thus it will be at the end of this age. The Son of Man will send forth His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all things that offend, and those who work iniquity, and will cast them into the furnace of fire. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Then the righteous will shine forth like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears to hear, let him hear! Matthew 13:37b-43 EMTV
If we fail to choose the refining fire of the Holy Spirit, the day will come when another fire will be chosen for us. Only the purifying power of the Spirit of God is able to rid us of those things that would cause us to be dull of hearing. Only the Spirit's presence in us can make us the good seed, or sons of the Kingdom. If we are going to escape the ever-spreading, stupefying influence of the poisonous seeds which are the tares planted among us, we must choose the path that takes us by way of the Cross.
The stupefying poison found in far too many present-day "ministries" is about to culminate in something of which they are unaware. Although they may have preached about "antichrist" or the "beast" of Revelation, thinking they know whereof they speak, the horrors that await them they could never have imagined.
A willful one
There will be no mercy shown to those who fell for the enemy's lies and who faithfully--albeit blindly--propagated false doctrine throughout the world. After doing his bidding--in the Name of God, of course--they will be discarded. When they appeal to Jesus, telling Him of all the things they did in His Name, He will brush them aside with the chilling words, "Depart from me, workers of iniquity, I never knew you." They profaned the precious covenant made through Jesus' blood. Their self-exaltation and deeds borne out of filthy flesh have come to naught.
Daniel prophesied of a willful one who is coming. Part of Daniel's account we read here:
For ships of Kittim shall come against him; therefore he shall be grieved, and shall return, and have indignation against the holy covenant, and shall do his pleasure: he shall even return, and have regard unto them that forsake the holy covenant. And arms shall stand on his part, and they shall profane the sanctuary, even the fortress, and shall take away the continual burnt offering; and they shall set up the abomination that makes desolate. And such as do wickedly against the covenant shall he pervert by flatteries: but the people that know their God shall be strong, and do exploits. And they that be wise among the people shall instruct many: yet they shall fall by the sword and by flame, by captivity and by spoil, many days. Daniel 11:30-33
Here we find again, tucked away in an old language definition, that word "stupefy." It is found in the Hebrew word shâmêm, and is translated "desolate." It means "to stun (or intransitively grow numb), that is, devastate or (figuratively) stupefy (both usually in a passive sense)." Then we have the word abomination, taken from a Hebrew word defined as "disgusting, that is, filthy; especially idolatrous or (concretely) an idol."
Such definitions clearly show that Daniel was warning of some disgusting, filthy, idolatrousness that stuns and stupefies even further those who have followed the error that leads to destruction. Any "revelations" they proclaimed to their hearers may have been "stunning" but not in the sense they had mistakenly assumed. Instead, it is more likely they are as those described by Jude, who "ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward." Jude is referring to Old Testament Balaam who was willing to accept payment to curse God's people Israel.
'Sorcery' that deceives
It is difficult to put into words the massive, stupefying desolation that is overtaking the peoples of what once were considered "Christian" nations. For any with ears to hear and eyes to see, the deception that is so blatantly succeeding on such a grand scale brings indescribable shock. Never in our greatest imaginations could we have conceived of such degradation being blindly accepted by millions of people. The meaning of the word stupefying is becoming crystal clear.
Is it already too late for countless souls? What is ahead for the true believers who will stand firm and refuse to deny their faith in God?
Earlier, we showed the definition of the word "sorcery" in reference to a physical, or practical, application. Numerous passages in the book of Revelation seem to apply to both the practical and spiritual, as we see here in chapter 18. "Your merchants were the magnates of the earth, for by your sorcery all the nations were deceived." (Revelation 18:23b EMTV) In thus passage, John is writing about the great "whore," Mystery Babylon.
Spiritually speaking, the "merchants" who are the "magnates of the earth" are those who have spread false doctrine around the world and have taken money for doing so. They became "great" and powerful in their own eyes, while arrogantly expanding their reach around the globe. The "sorcery" they spread, with its stupefying effect, served only to deceive the masses so that they never came to know the true and living God.
On ekklesia4him.net are numerous articles about apostasy, deception and error. These three things and more have brought such heart-breaking devastation to the "church," but there is sorcery that has also brought devastation in other areas as well.
On the practical side, there are those who claim the "sorcery" is being carried out by illicit drug dealers. As dreadful as that is, and as destructive the effect of these drug pushers' influence on society, with its toll on human life, there is something more sinister to be exposed.
Real life example
Sometimes, as messengers of God, we must endure things in this life that not only refine us, but the experiences occasionally become part of the message. Such is true in my case, as my testimony shows. But there is more, as I've learned in recent days.
As one who is called to expose flesh with all its evil, my physical flesh has gone through countless trials. After writing Death and Life--a Closer Look, the Holy Spirit quickened to me the subject for this article. I began documenting the scriptures He led me to, and made a few notes. My health has not been the best for some time, but it suddenly became noticeably worse and I had to set aside my writing.
After several doctor appointments and blood tests, I was told my "kidneys are critical," my "platelets are critically low" and my pancreas was "inflamed." Of course, my whole body had been damaged by Severe Sepsis in 2003, so these things come as no real surprise; but "critical?" and the timing? Sounds a lot like when I began to write Calling Forth the Remnant, and the enemy attempted to destroy my life by resurrecting a health issue which had its beginning in over-use of antibiotics--something I did in ignorance because a doctor prescribed them.
On June 23, I was sent to emergency by a naturopathic physician who did blood work because a medical doctor was in no hurry to help me. It appears the emergency department at our local hospital doesn't care to associate with naturopaths. The treatment I received was so shocking I still have a hard time getting my mind around it all. They did more blood work which showed the same results the naturopath had when he told me "Get to emergency ASAP." He knew I needed immediate care, but they were more interested in showing me their disagreement with him. After many hours in emergency, and two sets of blood tests, electrocardiographs, BP monitoring, chest x-ray, etc., they sent me home, saying I was "okay." I did not feel okay. The doctor who was on the night shift had said my kidneys were failing and she would have a specialist see me in the morning, but her recommendations fell on deaf ears, it seems. The morning shift had other ideas. I could say much more, but will not take the space here. Just thinking about what they said, and the general attitude, only makes me shudder in disbelief.
Several days later, I went to health records and got a copy of my lab results, which is my right, even though they tried to intimidate me and demand why I wanted them. As the forms said, it is my right to not answer that question, so I didn't. It was good to get away from there and the oppressiveness that is so prevalent.
When I read the lab results, I was even more horrified to see actual evidence of the obvious neglect in that emergency department.
My platelets showed "critical low" at "21" rather than being in the 150-400 range. The ND had said I was at severe risk of "bleeding out" from a simple bruise or cut.
The kidney results showed the S Creatinine "High" at "145.1" rather than the normal range of "35-97." And the Urea was "critical high" at "15.3" as opposed to a "2.8-7.1" range.
As for my pancreas, the Lipase was "critical high" at "109" when it should have been "under 60."
The good news is, by sending me home they spared me an onslaught of chemicals that would have further stressed my kidneys and liver. When they thought they would "show me" for having sought alternative care, they actually did me a favor. So now, I am on a regimen of health-giving herbal combinations that will slowly, but surely bring my organs and blood back to a healthier state. I already am feeling a little stronger. Of course, numerous folks have also been praying for me. The same God who created the herbs for our health is the One who heals miraculously. The preferred way to health and healing is His way. But what has mankind done?
With the knowledge of good and evil, man has always tended toward doing things his own way. This includes trust in a man of flesh in times of illness, like we see in the account of King Asa. "And in the thirty and ninth year of his reign Asa was diseased in his feet; his disease was exceeding great: yet in his disease he sought not to the LORD, but to the physicians." (2 Chronicles 16:12) Then there was the woman with the "issue of blood" who ". . .had suffered many things of many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was nothing bettered, but rather grew worse. . ." But finally she reached out to touch the hem of the Great Physician's garment, and was healed. (Mark 5:26)
Man's waywardness has increasingly worsened over thousands of years, giving way to unspeakable things which now have succeeded in stupefying the masses. Health care has become "sickness care" that could be better termed the "business of sickness." If it is so good, why is there more sickness rather than less? It is a lucrative business, and one the tyrants of the world are striving to have as the "only way." Pressure is being put to bear against any kind of health care that is according to the plan of God. The spirit of antichrist is everywhere! Yes; even in one of the most revered professions, as we learn from countless sources, such as this one:
Never before in history was there a larger, more profitable and bloodier fraud than that perpetrated by the pharmaceutical drug cartel. Over almost a century it has built a global monopoly in health care based on fraud: the drug industry promises health to millions of people yet the entire industry depends on the continuation and expansion of diseases as the market places for their patented drugs.
~ Dr. Matthias Rath
Does it mean all doctors and health-care people are evil? No! There are thousands of caring, devoted people who have at heart the best interests of their patients. It is the system under which they are trained that is flawed. The stupefying practices are taught in the educational institutions, with--as men like Dr. Rath would say--the pharmaceutical drug cartel dictating the rules of the game. It is all about greed and control. They don't care that the human body was created with the ability to heal itself, if there is proper nutrition and a sensible lifestyle.
Dr. James P. Carter, M.D., Dr. P.H., wrote the book Racketeering in Medicine. In it he exposes the suppression of alternatives and how it is done through intimidation and control by pharmaceutical companies and doctors who are greedy for the higher-paying "cut, burn and poison" methods of modern medicine. Here is a quote from the back of Dr. Carter's book which "exposes disturbing and thought-provoking evidence that":
Bona-fide therapies are being disparaged as quackery Health-care givers who offer alternative treatments are being persecuted Government agencies are participating in the harassment of alternative practitioners Drug companies are unduly influencing medical professionals' actions Kangaroo courts are convicting honorable men of trumped-up charges The financial bottom line all too often determines what medicine or treatment is researched, tested and approved.
"Dr. Carter does not speak in generalities or put forth vague accusations. He presents names, events and facts, which are of interest to all . . ."
If one has the time to do a little searching, there are alarming accounts to be found, such as the one found at this link.
In my last article, Death and Life--a Closer Look, we talked about genetically modified food and seed. The chemical companies who are responsible for that industry are part of the same drug cartel influencing the medical community.
There is a day of judgment coming for all who have abused the masses while making the pursuit of money their focus, as we read in James' epistle. At the end of the passage are found words of comfort for their victims.
Listen now, you rich, weep and howl at your miseries which are coming upon you! Your riches have decayed, and your garments have become moth-eaten. Your gold and silver have become corroded, and their poison will be a witness against you and will eat your flesh like fire. You stored up treasure in the last days. Indeed, the wages of the laborers who reaped your fields, which were kept back by you, cry out, and the cries of the reapers have entered into the ears of the Lord of Hosts. You lived luxuriously upon the earth and you lived riotously, you nourished your hearts as in a day of slaughter. You have condemned; you have murdered the just. He does not resist you. Therefore be patient, brothers, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer awaits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient for it, until it receives the early and late rain. You also be patient. Establish your hearts, because the coming of the Lord has drawn near. James 5:1-8 EMTV
In the midst of the "big business" of medicine can be found good, honest doctors and others who are taking a stand against it. I could tell of a few, but instead will share from a recent email I received from a very good friend. She wrote, "What is behind the pharmaceutical industry, being the second greatest industry in the world next to the arms race, speaks for itself. . . If people really knew what was in the drugs prescribed to them they would never take them. And I say that as a registered nurse. I had an interesting dream from the Lord about this many years ago Stella. I withdrew from nursing because my conscience could no longer allow me to participate in the administration and overuse of these drugs to unknowing patients anymore. Even though I know they do have their place in short term use and with limitations. It was weighing on me too heavily and I have decided to postpone returning to nursing because of it. . . The medical profession feel very threatened by natural remedies. It is the way we are programmed during our training. We are not taught to question medical practices or health workers and the information given to us in pharmaceutical journals is regulated. We are never told the truth about the poisons of these chemicals."
There is one thing worse than flesh, and that is stupefied flesh. Until we are born anew by the Spirit of God, we are most susceptible to the stupefaction that abounds. And it takes great diligence, and seeking the mind of God if we are to escape such pitfalls. How often we fall short! None of us is perfect.
One final example in the Old Testament where we find a man who was stupefied, is that of Jonah who was sent to Ninevah. When he tried to escape the call by going to Tarshish, he was found in "the sides of the ship; and he lay, and was fast asleep." (Jonah 1:5b) The "sleep" Jonah slept was not your normal "sleep"; it was a "stupefied" sleep, as indicated by the definition of the Hebrew word râdam. The word means "to stun, that is, stupefy (with sleep or death)."
To make a long story short, Jonah went from his stupefied sleep to being unceremoniously thrown overboard. After which he was swallowed by a huge fish and spent three days and three nights there before being vomited up on the shore, then finally going to Ninevah to obey the call of God.
How often do we miss the voice of the Holy Spirit, and the call of God, because we are stupefied and dull of hearing? No wonder Jesus repeatedly said "He who has ears to hear, let him hear!"
We could go on with much more, but this has already been rather long, as well as quite personal.
When I learned the topic would center on the word stupefy, I had no idea what I would be going through between the day it was started and now. It is not pleasant being in this body, with all its damaged organs and flesh, but the Spirit of God uses everything for His purposes. I thrill at the revelation of His word that He so graciously gives me to share, and that makes it all worthwhile. So, after all, like the Apostle Paul said, "I have learned to be content in whatever state I am". . . because . . . "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." (Philippians 4:11b, 13 EMTV)
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