Access to God - RR187AP75
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|This transcript is unedited. It was:|
|Archived by the Mt. Olive Tape Library|
|Digitized, transcribed, and published by Christ Rules|
|Posted by with permission|
Let us worship God. Praise ye the Lord, sing unto the Lord a new song and His praise in the congregation of saints. For the Lord taketh pleasure in His people, He will beautify the meek with salvation. Let us pray.
Our Father we gather together rejoicing that we are Thy people that Thou hast separated us unto Thyself. That Thou hast given us a calling and has given us the promise of Thy presence and of Thy strength. Bless us therefore as we give ourselves to the study of Thy word that we may grow in strength and in wisdom and that we may by Thy grace be made more than conquerors in Christ. In His name, Amen.
Our scripture is Deuteronomy 23:15-18 and our subject is Access to God. Deuteronomy 23:15-18.
“Thou shalt not deliver unto his master the servant which is escaped from his master unto thee:
16 He shall dwell with thee, even among you, in that place which he shall choose in one of thy gates, where it liketh him best: thou shalt not oppress him.
17 There shall be no whore of the daughters of Israel, nor a sodomite of the sons of Israel.
18 Thou shalt not bring the hire of a whore, or the price of a dog, into the house of the Lordthy God for any vow: for even both these are abomination unto the Lord thy God.”
These few verses open up the meaning of godly society
These few verses open up the meaning of godly society in a clear and very simple way. Verse fifteen has reference to slaves, there were two kind of slaves in Hebrew society and they cannot be defined in the same sense that we today define the word slave. The major form, first, was a persons sentenced to servitude for the purpose of making restitution. The courts could sentence a man to make restitution to someone and if he could not pay the amount he would then be the servant of the person robbed or in any way the victim of the sentenced man’s crime. The man winning such a case could then sell the services to someone else, let us say it was equivalent to six months or two years labor and thereby by selling the man’s services or labor he could get immediate restitution. This law does not refer to such a sentenced man, he had a debt to pay. Other slaves were prisoners of war whose restitution as slaves was to all the society because of the harm done by their attack and/or invasion. They were to be treated justly and as members of the family in a lesser degree. If they were mistreated they could walk into any neighboring farm, ranch or city and claim asylum. They could then choose which city in the nation they wanted to live in. In many cases no return to their country was possible. Over the centuries in many cultures soldiers who allow themselves to be captured are unwanted by their own country and thus have no hope of life there. A most recent example of that, a prominent one, was the Soviet Union. Any who were taken captive in World War Two on their return were immediately sent to slave labor camps and worked to death. [00:05:34]
Thus adoption into the victorious country because the
Thus adoption into the victorious country because the only future that such people had. The original context of the golden rule has reference to foreigners of any kind, including these prisoners of war. We read in Leviticus 19:33-34:
“And if a stranger sojourns with thee in your land you shall not vex him. But the stranger dwelleth you shall be unto you as one as born among you and thou shalt love him as thyself for you were strangers in the land of Egypt, I am the Lord your God.”
Israel is reminded of its own enslavement in Egypt. They are therefore to be protective of all foreigners free or enslaved. This is a very remarkable law. It is surprising that ore attention has not been paid to it. This law can also refer to foreign slaves who fled across the border into Israel. Israel’s God decreed policy would be common knowledge in surrounding states. Abused slaves then had only to cross the border into Israel to gain freedom. By contrast the Code of Hammurabi decreed that anyone harboring a runaway slave be put to death. Some commentators insist on seeing this law as applicable only to foreign slaves. There is nothing in the law to warrant such a limitation. We have a case of a runaway slave in the New Testament, Paul’s Letter to Philemon. The runaway slave was Animus’s whose owner was his brother Philemon because Paul in Philemon 16 speaks of Animus to Philemon as a brother in the flesh. Your brother in the flesh. Animus had apparently gone astray and to rescue his brother Philemon had purchased him then Philemon saw his brother steal from him and run to Rome and there he ended in prison with Paul and Paul knew his family and him. Paul sent Animus back to Philemon with his letter asking for Animus to be forgiven now that he was converted and offering to repay what Animus had stolen from his brother. [00:08:53]
The premise of Paul’s thinking is this text, Deuteronomy
The premise of Paul’s thinking is this text, Deuteronomy 23:15-16. The second law in this text is in verse seventeen and it prohibits any covenant girl from becoming a prostitute or any male a sodomite, a sodomite prostitute. The Hebrew text makes clear that both were sacred or religious prostitutes of the Ishtar Escarti and other related fertility cults. Prostitution in antiquity was in the main connected with fertility cults. Later on prostitutes did exist in Jerusalem usually connected with the colonies of foreign merchants, as Proverbs 2:16, 5:3-20 and 23:27 make clear. They refer to them as strange women, strange here meaning here as in stranger. Ritual prostitution was often a means of leading the covenant people into another faith as the incident with the Moabite women in Numbers 25 makes clear. Those Rabbis who saw the slaves of verse fifteen as foreign slaves insisted on seeing the runaway slave as a potential convert to the covenant and the patrons of male and female prostitutes as potential converts to paganism. Verse eighteen forbids any money or gift received by a male or female prostitute from ever being received by the temple or the house of the Lord. Such an idea seems foreign to us but to these [unknown] of old any sanctuary seemed a valid place to give the gods their percentage. This certainly helped introduce the practice into various cultures because of financial receipts were considerable. One religion after another was ready outside of Israel to accept the receipts of any funds from its practitioners. Verse eighteen uses a word for homosexuals, dogs. This same term is used for them in the New Testament, in Galatians 22:15. Romans 1:21 speaks of homosexuality as the burning out of man, in the Greek text this is very clear. In the English unfortunately it merely reads ‘they burned one for another’ and the word has lost some of its original meaning. [00:12:28]
It is understood better now as burned out
It is understood better now as burned out. When man wages war against God as Romans 1:24-31 makes clear he destroys himself. Modern efforts to pervert the biblical text on homosexuality into something condoning the practice or simply scholarly attempts to propagate flagrant lying are too common. Book after book has been written by Catholic and Protestant scholars, the jist of which is, the bible is strongly in favor of homosexuality. Of course this is deconstructionist thinking. It’s the same kind of thinking that has led [unknown] that she knows that Shakespeare was a black woman. With such thinking anything can be concluded. The biblical term dog makes obvious how the bible regards such persons, with radical contempt and it regards them as the enemies of God. W. Gunther Plot made an interesting comment on the use of the term dog. He found evidence of this term being used on a [unknown] inscription so apparently it was not uncommon even in cultures that accepted them. Even such cultures had contempt for them. Dogs were not domesticated in biblical times and they were generally regarded as wild beasts. They did coexist with people and they were the scavengers in town and country, their presence was welcomed because they devoured the human excrement as soon as it was dumped out of the house; that was their purpose. This was a use continued into modern times even in the Western world and still common elsewhere. This helps us to understand the biblical usage. Of verses sixteen and seventeen Luther held all gains by sin are unacceptable to God and this premise has long marked the church’s practice and the acceptance of dirty money in any form has been sharply condemned by many churchmen over the centuries. [00:15:49]
Revelation 22:15 associates homosexuals with sorcerers, whoremongers, murderers, idolaters, and who so ever loveth and maketh a lie. This association makes clear that these people are incapable of making an acceptable gift or offering to God. Now there is a point here that in our society today we miss. We have forgotten that gifts to a king are a privilege. As you recall, we saw that the temple, the synagogue and the church architecturally have all been designed as the throne room of the King. At no time could a man make a gift to the king unless his person were acceptable, a gift is a form of access, an access to God is restricted to His established terms and conditions. We today have a unrestricted doctrine of access, we feel that anybody has the right to ask us a question. I recall very vividly about twenty years ago a woman who was a dear friend to Dorothy and myself who on one occasion told a rather nasty woman who came up and tried to pick a fight with her and she looked at her and said I don’t know you well enough to fight with you and then walked off. A gift is a form of access, and access to God is restricted to his established terms and conditions. A gift is a form of access. A few of us can recall how before the war it was especially in the more conservative parts to the United States totally unacceptable for a young man before he was formally engaged and the engagement was announced to give anything but flowers and candy to a girl. Something perishable. He could not have any further access than those perishable very temporal and temporary gifts. [00:19:01]
To assume the possibility of a promiscuous access is
To assume the possibility of a promiscuous access is radically wrong. Our access to God the Father is by means of atonement, the sacrifices in the Old Testament era and Christ’s sacrifice of himself in the new, then the law of God, the way of holiness, gives us His conditions for continuing relationship. Our gifts to God are an aspect of His law. His law tells us how we are to approach Him. Thus for a prostitute or a sodomite to bring a gift to God is to claim that access to the throne of grace is on their terms and not Gods. We can see immediately that if we think a bit about incidents we are familiar with how very, very much this is forgotten. I heard once of a man who rejected a gift he wanted no association with and the man acted as though he had been insulted and the prospective donor had bad manners, wherein fact the bad manners were his for presuming he had access to him. Such a person substitutes their will for God’s law when they approach God on their own. So the law has a very important premise. In the law of the runaway slave we are told that persons seeking justice should have an access to us but in the law of gifts the unrepentant moral regenerates can have no access whatsoever to God except on His terms, through Jesus Christ. Let us pray.
Our Father, we thank Thee for Thy word. We thank Thee that by Thy grace through Jesus Christ we have access unto Thee. How great Thou art and how merciful and we thank Thee. In Christ’s name, Amen. [00:22:06]
Are there any questions about our lesson?...
Are there any questions about our lesson?
You can see from the matter of access how much erosion has taken place in our culture so that men no longer are aware of things that were once every day facts without exception. Cultural erosion is very, very prevalent now, yes?
[Question] What would you use in place of dogs today if you were going to use an animal, the name of an animal to replace dogs, is there an animal that would satisfy that…?
[Rushdoony] No because a dog is still a scavenger, the dog will eat anything, now I’m not saying this in degradation of dogs, I’m very partial to dogs I think they have their place in our society and even in antiquity they were very readily used and trained because sheep herding is one of the most ancient of agricultural practices. So we have to know realistically what animals are. Yes?
[Question] When I was a child I saw my dog eat dung and I thought that was sort of sick, when in fact, we gain for that. When at that time the prevailing idea was that if a dog did that he was sick or old or…
[Rushdoony] They are not alone in that, a great deal of animals do that are scavengers. It’s just that we have in our day become so sentimental that we cannot say anything in derogation of any group of peoples or any animal. We no longer view the world realistically. It’s not being unkind to animals to be realistic about them. Yes? [00:24:48]
[Question] There was two case laws that you brought
[Question] There was two case laws that you brought up, if I didn’t read the scripture I would never have noticed the commonality about access and why they fit together, you bring slaves in and you exclude those…how does one dig this stuff up by reading commentaries, historians..?
[Rushdoony] Yes, in part by commentaries and knowledge of history, it also helps and I have an unfair advantage there, that I’m older, I grew up part of the time in a rural atmosphere and also had a foreign background and therefore a tremendous deposit of ancient practices and customs in my background. And as I’ve often said most of the people in the world today have been born since World War Two. They are unfamiliar with the world of before World War Two. As a result so much has been suppressed in the way of history, in the way of knowledge.
Well if there are no further comments or questions let us conclude with prayer.
Our Father, we give thanks that Thy word is truth. That Thou hast given us access to Thee that Thou hast given us by Thy mercy privileges in Thy kingdom. How great Thou art and how merciful unto us and we thank Thee. And now go in peace, God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Ghost, bless you and keep you, guide and protect you, this day and always, Amen.