Armed with Death

“Whoever sheds the blood of man,
by man shall his blood be shed,
for God made man in his own image.”
(Genesis 9:6)

James Jordan’s contribution to the study of any particular book of the Bible is invaluable, but the most important is very likely his work on Genesis. Because spineless modern theologians are unwilling to stand for its complete veracity, and yet very willing to jettison basic logic, they often miss the significance of its early chapters for the rest of the Bible and of history.

The themes of the early chapters of Genesis are brief and tightly bundled, and all subsequent Scripture unpacks them in greater and greater ways. When the issue of capital punishment is brought up, the Church rightly looks first to the New Testament, then to the Old, but rarely gets as far as Genesis. To answer the question from the Bible, one must first ask what a human is, what death is, and what a sword is. The problem for most Christians who take their theological lead from western culture rather than God is that the humans, the death and the sword in Genesis 3 are not historical events but ideological symbols.

In a recent online discussion with some atheists, I mentioned that my biblical worldview determined my answers to some crucial questions. If one believes the Bible, then one believes that the killing of unborn infants and of old people is wrong, but the killing of animals for food and of murderers to atone for their crime is right. Of course, there was the usual response of “the sanctimony of hell.” The response to my view on capital punishment? “How can you reconcile such a view with your beliefs?”

It amazes me how secularists think their moral code is the obvious conclusion to come to. I’d call it abject stupidity but it’s the result of years of evil in universities and legislative bodies. For our youth, it is the darkness of intellectual slavery. We are now at the point where good is evil and evil is good. Subsidize sin at home and abroad with public money, and ridicule or demonize our best and most faithful citizens. Pander to murderers and hack the unborn to pieces. And enforce this demonic “moral code” on society through unjust laws, manipulation, deceit, fraud, intimidation and eloquent speeches.

Jordan observes that Noah was the first man to be given the authority to kill another man. Moderns see this as an isolated fact (well, an isolated mythical fact), but it is a fact that is part of a process. The Testing of Adam was designed to bring him to the point of judicial maturity. He was given the Law not merely that he might not be a lawbreaker, but that he might become the Law, and execute lawbreakers. Who was the lawbreaker? The serpent, who intended to use the Law to bring about the deaths of Adam and his wife. As Jesus said, “He was a murderer from the beginning.”

Adam was to judge the serpent, perhaps to crush its head. He would have brought death into the world through his faith and righteousness, rather than through his faithless unrighteousness. This judgment and death were part of God’s plan. Adam was to judge between ethical light and ethical darkness, and mortify sin in his own members and those of his household by dismembering the serpent. (The Lord does take off its legs in a limited way, just as the curses upon Adam are limited.)

So, instead of going boldly from the Garden with flaming sword in hand as God’s representative, Adam was cast out of the Garden, and kept out by the sword. As we have discussed elsewhere, he was under the sword in chapter 2 but intended to be over the sword in chapter 3 as a minister of God, with the heavenly government of the angels upon his shoulders. We see the same thing in Israel, where the new nation is under the angelic sword at Passover, but wielding the angelic sword upon Jericho. It is a process of judicial maturity. The process of Israel’s maturity was intended to lead to an entire state of self-governing people, an entire nation of judges, of elohim. Instead, we have the book of Judges, with only its twelve stars.

The murder of Abel by Cain led to the “ministry of murder” of Lamech, and then a world filled with violence. This is often assumed to be anarchy but it was more likely a kingdom without mercy, a barbarism-by-law. The same manipulation of the law as a weapon against the weak was evident in the Pharisees and Herods, and is alive and well today. The curse of death was always intended to be transferred from the hand of the angels to the hands of men, but faithful, merciful men — men like Noah, the first judge, the first true “image of God.”

All saints have been under the sword in Christ. Our hearts are circumcised, and we have been slain and resurrected ethically in Him. We are to judge rightly in all our dealings because we will one day judge angels, as Adam was supposed to, and our better Adam did. In the Church, it is excommunication ministered with mercy, that serpents might be crushed. In the State, it is execution administered with mercy, that serpents might not gain members and become dragons. [1]

We also mortify the sin in our members that God might mortify sin in the hearts of others. The Word of God in our mouths is a sword that brings life to some and death to others. But there is another death in the hand of every saint, one that we fail to identify as a weapon, and that is our own martyrdom, the witness of Abel. This too is a sword to be wielded.

As the canker devours western culture, we will be called upon to take a stand. Real pressure is mounting not on the issue of same sex marriage but on the right of the Church to speak against it and reject it, discerning between light and darkness. The saints have a weapon that the opposition does not even suspect, and that is the willingness to make this “a hill to die on.” Communism was a real threat because its true believers were often willing to die for their cause. This is not the case with same sex marriage. The persecution of our society’s best citizens has already begun but the fight will not be long. Our opponents are not willing to die for their cause. They hide behind twisted legislation, as did the Pharisees and all their children throughout Church history.

The curse of death is ours to use as a weapon, just as Jesus did. When a dragon dismembers the Church, the Church multiplies its members. Jesus’ death means martyrdom is the pruning of a fruitful tree. This is Satan’s worst nightmare.

“As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today.” (Genesis 50:20)

The willingness of saints to suffer and die always brings the sword of the cherubim down upon God’s enemies and divides them, then the fire of the seraphim upon them to consume them. [2] It is the ministry of the two angels at the gate. But under the New Covenant there is a third element. As the body of Christ, with the testimony of the apostles, this “sacrifice” is now achieved through the government of heavenly men upon earth: cherubim (knife) and seraphim (fire) in the hand of the elohim.

Creation: Day 1/Genesis
God has taken his place in the divine council;
in the midst of the gods [elohim] he holds judgment:
Division: Day 2/Exodus
“How long will you judge unjustly
and show partiality to the wicked? Selah
Ascension: Day 3/Leviticus
Give justice to the weak and the fatherless;
maintain the right of the afflicted and the destitute.
Rescue the weak and the needy;
deliver them from the hand of the wicked.”
Testing: Day 4/Numbers
They have neither knowledge
nor understanding,
they walk about in darkness;
all the foundations of the Land
are shaken.
Maturity: Day 5/Deuteronomy
I said, “You are gods [elohim] ,
sons of the Most High,
all of you;
Conquest: Day 6/Joshua
nevertheless, like men [Adams]
you shall die,
and fall like any prince.”
Glorification: Day 7/Judges
Arise, O God, judge the Land;
for you shall inherit all the nations!
(Psalm 82)

[1] See Serpents and Dragons.
[2] See Snakes and Chains. A government that promised to pass legislation for same sex marriage in Australia has been divided and consumed… for now.

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