Isaiah 28:12 (KJV)
12 To whom he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing: yet they would not hear.
Joshua 5:12 (KJV)
12 ¶ And the manna ceased on the morrow after they had eaten of the old corn of the land; neither had the children of Israel manna any more; but they did eat of the fruit of the land of Canaan that year.
“Drain the swamp.”
“Build the wall.”
“Eliminate radical Islam from the face of the planet.”
Whether you claim to have political aspirations or not, you cannot help but be aware that our new president is setting a whole new tone in our nation’s capital and far beyond.
A metaphor is defined as a symbolic representation. Those who have a problem with our new president are those who simply have a problem with what he symbolizes.
At the dawn of the first century, there had been no heavenly vision, no voice of God for 400 years. Scholars call it the “intertestamental years of silence.” God was creating a buffer, a boundary, to clearly bring about an eye-opening distinction between a world where He is active and a world without His voice. The Jewish nation Jesus Christ was born into had been scattered to the four winds. The remnant in Palestine were heavily oppressed by the Roman empire. The truth is, with no prophetic revelation, the people were on the verge of completely perishing (see Proverbs 29:18).
Fresh on the scene bursts a forerunner, a true prophet with a fresh revelation: John the Baptist with his familiar cry, “Prepare ye the way!”
Ironically, the general population, especially those responsible for the established religious status quo were very much in opposition. In fact, during the short lifetime and ministry of Jesus Christ, the majority of people He encountered were filled with animosity and rejection. Why do you think He died on the cross?
Jesus Christ was not subject to the whims of democratic elitism. Rather, He, the Lord of the universe, the Creator of all creation, the Almighty God, overruled the very essence of human limitation, death itself, and became victorious over the grave! Because of His resurrection, we have Pentecost! He came rushing into the house and the hearts of praying disciples and–even to this day–fills the hearts of all who are ready for real Refreshing!
The metaphor goes like this: There can be no true new without forcefully, intentionally, getting rid of the old.
It must have been a rather difficult day for God’s people to have to break out their hoes and sickles to begin sowing and reaping in the Promised Land. The miraculous manna, provided without so much as lifting a finger, came to an end. They really were given no choice in the matter because, freedom from wilderness wondering is truly worth putting in a good days work.
The truth about accessing what is truly new, refreshing, exhilarating, and sustaining, is that it comes at a price. Human nature always tends to lean toward security and the path of least resistance. There was no future for Israel outside of the invasion of the New Testament. There was no future for Israel wandering in the wilderness eating mundane manna. Likewise, there’s no future for those who have grown accustomed to relying on the habits and routines of yesteryear without insisting on the true new!
What is draining the joy and peace out of your life today? Why would you continue to harbor the fugitive of futility when you can really bear fruit?
President Trump may be a metaphor. However, the symbolism of which I write is of an unspeakably higher and greater substance: the Holy Ghost. Humanity is always short-sighted and will falter and make mistakes. God sees all, knows all, and loves unconditionally. He never makes a mistake. He has promised to move into every heart that has repented and is baptized in His Name (see Acts 2:38).
Real repentance calls for “draining the swamp” of an old, established regime of fleshly stagnancy and death. Drug addiction, disobedience, and illicit lifestyles have no future. Worn out and self-gratifying worship has no future. Going through the motions, praying vainly repetitive prayers brings no lasting peace and sustainable joy. Keeping the life-changing gospel to yourself is a dead-end. What will become of the next generation if they see their parents living out a lifeless routine? The only answer is that we constantly insist on detachment from what’s dead to stay attached to what’s alive. Real water baptism brings the dawning of a new day, a new identity. Real salvation is new birth with Jesus Christ taking up residence in our innermost being. Eternal life is reserved for those who insist on daily spiritual refreshing!
2 Corinthians 5:17 (KJV)
17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
The Holy Ghost is inspiring a new generation of believers who insist on “breaking up fallow ground.” I’m thankful for a new president who is setting the example of bravely examining that which is not productive and imposing new expectations. He may be hated for it, but he is not the first, and he will most likely not be the last.
My prayer is that those contemplating the state of affairs in Washington would even more carefully contemplate eternal life. There is no salvation outside of being born again (John 3). My challenge is that we insist on fruitfulness in God’s kingdom by clearing barren fields and planting new crops with the enduring and dependable seed of the Word of God!
Pastor Don Haymon II