A Narrative of a cult leader, convicted felon, and the Anointed of God
A micro-biography of Wayne Curtis Bent and The Church, The Lord Our Righteousness
“Here I stand, I can do no other.” Martin Luther, April 17, 1521
“Woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel!” The Apostle Paul, 1 Cor. 9:16
“For the love of Christ constraineth us.” 2 Cor. 5:14
The men the American people admire most extravagantly
are the most daring liars; the men they detest most violently
are those who try to tell them the truth." ~H. L. Mencken
Shortly after dawn, at 7:14 am, Monday, June 5, 1967, a secret command was issued that launched the entire Israeli Air Force. Their destination: Egypt, Syria, and ultimately Jordan. Thus began the Arab/Israeli Six-day War which, as the name implies, ended six days later, on a Sabbath, with Syria accepting peace negotiations with Israel.
On the fourth day of the war, Thursday, the eighth of June, Israeli commandos drove straight to the heart of then Arab-occupied Old Jerusalem. With an intensity of purpose fueled by what they believed to be two-thousand years of national homelessness, they fought on until they found themselves in the presence of the massive Herodian stones of the ancient Western Wall. Believed to have been a part, two millennia ago, of the last Jewish temple, now the most sacred place in all Judaism was once again under Jewish control. This event portended a fulfillment of prophecy little understood until the beginning of the third millennium. Old Jerusalem was again in the hands of Jews.
Just as the prophecy of Genesis proclaimed that the Jewish Messiah would come at the very end of Israel's sovereignty as a nation in the first-century, A.D., so also the second coming of Messiah was to be heralded by Jerusalem once again coming under Jewish domination, this time in A.D. 1967. The "times of the Gentiles," having been fulfilled, came to an end.
On the morning of June 10th, 1967, the last day of the Six-day War, less than forty-eight hours after Israeli commandos secured the Western Temple Wall on Mount Moriah, twenty-six-year-old Wayne Curtis Bent was quietly baptized into the Christian faith in a small church near Poway, California.
“I'm sharing these thoughts in my 80th year, the thoughts of a cult leader and a convicted felon,” writes Wayne Bent, in his semi-autobiographical notes from which largely is taken this chronology of his earthly and spiritual journey, and of the church, The Lord Our Righteousness, that God founded through him.
Before 1967, Wayne Bent was rather much what could be called an ordinary man; a U. S. Navy veteran, a husband and eventually a father of three – a son and two daughters – and eventually an ordained minister of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. However, as with every other human born to this planet, there were moderate and sometimes exceptional forays into the extraordinary. But after 1967 even the word ordinary, in Wayne Bent's life, could never again be used as a descriptor – by him, or anyone who knew him.
One morning, standing before his workbench, engaged in the necessary tedium of a home-based business enterprise, Bent was struck by the thought, This could all be taken away in a moment. He realized that in an instant he could lose his home, his family, his livelihood and even his life, as many have, through some unforeseen tragedy.
Wayne's next thought was that which would irrevocably alter the course of not only his own life and that of his family, but to a great extent, the world itself. The odyssey that followed would take him out of the Baptist Church, where he taught Sunday School; effect the dissolution of two marriages; end his tenure as a Seventh-day Adventist minister; lead him to found a unique Christian denomination, and eventually through a seven-year incarceration in the prison system of New Mexico, culminating in the current disintegration of the American – and the world's – social and political structure.
The thought that came to him that morning while at his workbench? Simply, I will follow God. He cannot be taken away.
That simple, internal reflection, as it turned out, was as profound for the human race and its eventual demise, as it was for Bent himself, for it was uttered into the ether of a world where truth had become an unrecognizable and loosely fungible commodity that can be twisted, manipulated and used as a cudgel against genuine truth and those embracing it.
Wayne Bent's spiritual journey was also destined to become an expression of George Orwell's prescient statement, “In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act.” This ubiquitous principle of darkness would eventually result in Bent's aforementioned incarceration in the New Mexico penal system for seven prophetic years, predicated on a crime he did not commit.
The following is a brief chronology of the prophetic events of Bent's life that have led to what Scripture sets forth as Judgment Day for this world and its inhabitants. It is the expressed culmination of the prophecies of the long-misunderstood final book of the Bible, The Revelation of Jesus Christ and those of the Book of Daniel and the Dead Sea Scrolls.
This writing does not lean on excessively tedious citations or attributions in order to prove its thesis. Such references and proofs of faith are settled truth to those who will hear, and are adequately supplied in other LOR Church publications. This chronology is not intended to convince anyone of the veracity of its contents; only to present truths that have proven themselves to be of God. The reader, of course, is free to accept or reject the contents of the narrative herein presented. God's Holy Spirit is quite adequate to convince the convincible.
— ONE —
“Even when truth seems fatal, only truth will serve.” C. S. Lewis
“The two most important days in your life are the day you were born,
and the day you find out why.” Mark Twain
In 1967, following his workshop epiphany, and after three days of intensive prayer, the Holy Spirit came down upon Wayne Bent, instructing him to do something that seemed utterly counterintuitive to his new-found commitment to God: leave the Baptist Church and keep the biblical seventh-day Sabbath! But this command would by no means be the last, or even the greatest of God's directives that would be as a match tossed into the arsenal of the world's religious powder kegs.
An inscription carved into the base of a statue at the U.S. Government's National Archives building in Washington D.C. reads, “What is past is prologue” which is government-speak for You ain't seen nothin' yet. This would ultimately become an aphorism for Bent's life, of which at that time he was quite unaware. He was, after all, an insignificant man with an insignificant business, living in a small, insignificant Southern California suburb. Were he to step out his front door at that time and be run over by a truck, his obituary would likely have contained no more text than that of a town drunk who succumbed to a cirrhotic liver.
The direction to leave the Baptist Church and keep the biblical Sabbath created two apparently absurd conflicts. First of all, why would God tell him to leave the Baptist Church? Was it not the one Christian denomination that bore most accurately the standard for the truth of Scripture? And the Sabbath? Was he not already going to church on the right day – Sunday? If it wasn't Sunday, Bent did not even know for sure exactly what the “Sabbath Day” was, or why it mattered.
He had been, by this time, thoroughly enculturated into the almost universal acceptance that Sunday was the true Sabbath of God. So this command to keep the seventh-day Sabbath, and to leave the “true church” was much like telling an observant Muslim to abandon Islam and become a Hindu. It made no sense whatever, but what Wayne knew without a doubt was that the Voice that instructed him to do so was clearly and only God's.
Shortly thereafter, from that same Voice, came the pronouncement declaring what would prove to be, by human reasoning, a very mixed blessing: “You will always tell the truth,” God declared to him. And since that declaration, irrespective of the consequences to himself, personally, or to others, that is precisely what Wayne Bent has done. Those consequences, however, for simply telling the truth, have seemed at times harsh, chiding and even draconian in nature. Truth, it seems, is only popular if it's truth that corroborates what a person already accepts. If there is a magnum opus of a particular social/cultural sin in this present age, it is that of confirmation bias; the tendency to look for evidence that fortifies beliefs one already possesses, whether or not those beliefs are true. Someone once wrote that truth is like poetry – and most people hate poetry.
Wayne Bent was soon to discover the personal liabilities that attend one whose life is powerfully constrained by the truth only; unshaded and uncompromised. To many who are determined to promote truth, telling only the truth can seem a crippling disadvantage when they are denied the apparent benefits that subtle departures from pure honesty appear to provide. It is from this logic springs the current dishonesty so pervasive in Christian pulpits and the everyday living of people who otherwise consider themselves honest.
It is often the case that the appearance of a certain advantage can be imparted to an argument for truth and righteousness by the interjection of some small, seemingly benign but persuasive untruth – for the greater good, of course. This is to imply that the omniscient God of truth is evidently in need of something apart from His pure righteousness to serve its higher purpose, and must therefore depend upon fallen man to supply the marginal dishonesty which God cannot. It is this perverted logic that gives birth to what are often referred to as white lies, the purveyors of which never seem to understand that no departure from pure truth is ever white. It is not even gray – it's just black. It was these principles, ungrounded by integrity, that had become so repulsive to Wayne, for he saw in them the subtlety and the counterfeit gospel of the Edenic Serpent, and the genesis of the old trope, the end justifies the means.
Most people are so wed to their self-image, especially among their peers, that to speak truth without compromise or equivocation is to them a virtual death sentence; either of reputation or in physical reality. Only God can make truth more precious than mortal life.
“It meant a lot of very hard changes in my life, as the years went on,” Bent reflected.
The result was that the life-course of this man would be used to assay and bring to judgment all systems of man-created institutions, governments, societies and cultures – and the entirety of the human race itself.
“I tested every element of present day religion,” he said, “and found each one lacking in integrity and honesty, just as it was when Jesus walked upon the earth.”
“The world has yet to see what God can do with a man fully consecrated to him.” ~D.L Moody
At first thought, it would seem, to virtually any thinking person, that such an observation from an ordinary, common small-town man, as claiming that his life would affect every system humanity has created, is at the very least unwarranted, overly expansive and even grandiose; and at most, perhaps demented. However, one must remember that time and geographical constraints are more inconsequential and simple to the mind of God than casting a pebble to the earth. To a Mind that is infinite in all dimensions; a Mind that is fully and simultaneously conscious of the motion and effect of every sub-atomic particle of matter in His entire universe, the material – the clay – He chooses for his work is an exceedingly insignificant matter. All He requires is a vessel that will fully and absolutely, by free will, submit itself to Him. This He found in Wayne Bent.
As preposterous to the modern mind as this may seem, consider that God brought salvation to the world two-thousand-years ago by the agency of a single man who lived a comparatively short life of only thirty-three years. He traveled no more than eighty miles from his home; never wrote a word of Scripture; was rejected and denounced by his own church and nation, and was ultimately murdered on the Roman symbol of a Pagan god, at the behest of his own church and people. Yet even such an acclaimed historian as H. G. Wells – an avowed, life-long atheist – confessed that “Jesus Christ is the most unique person of history. No man can write a history of the human race without giving first and foremost place to the penniless teacher of Nazareth.” And yet this single, geographically-isolated and obscure man changed the world as has no other person in its history – by an exponential degree. Even his enemies were astounded at the depth of his education, “having never learned” (that is, having never attended their educational institutions, but rather was home schooled by mother and God). Then, as now, it seems the “public” school system was merely an institution of perpetual lower learning – or no learning.
As to Wayne Bent's schooling: before his conversion, the concept of a college education seemed unnecessarily difficult, not to mention a frivolous and colossal waste of time and finance. However, after his conversion at age twenty-five, he was directed, by that same Voice, to do just that: obtain a university education, even to the extent of a master's degree, studying for the ministry in the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
Even growing up as a boy, enrolled in the standard public curriculum, he observed that “the truth is not what gets you through school. What gets you through school,” he discovered, “is to be able to answer the questions on your examinations, not according to truth, but according to what the teacher taught you is truth, which are often widely divergent from each other” – a distinction he would ever carry with him, and that would rule his observations of the world and its guiding principles.
Bent realized that what is taught as truth is seldom, if ever, unvarnished, genuine truth, but only a premasticated, polluted and corrupted version of it. While it may actually contain a tiny kernel of reality, “truth” taught in the venues of public and private schools is seldom little more than camouflaged fairytales formulated to prevent the student from actually thinking. Rather, students are instructed to simply regurgitate the system's teaching, much like some animals upchuck their semi-digested food into their baby's mouths. Except the latter contains infinitely more nutritional value than does the sub-intellectual nourishment of a public education of the mind.
“This was a hard thing for me to realize,” said Bent, “that in both unconverted public schools and my 'converted' university experience, it was the same. Truth,” he observed, “is not what's taught in the colleges and universities. What's taught is the acceptable public statements of what truth is.” Any correlation between truth and what is actually taught, he realized, is most likely coincidental, a total fabrication, or the mingling of truth and falsehood to impart an unwarranted credibility to the falsehood. And to deviate from the standard curriculum in favor of what is actually true, brings with it consequences that few are willing to endure. It is much easier and expedient to simply accept prevailing delusions, which are usually mingled with a sufficient quantity of non-contextual truth so as to make them somewhat palatable.
This is why one must be willing to give up his life for what is true, since it has been the case, now and historically, that the end result of an undeviating allegiance to truth often costs the life of the adherent. This consequence can now vividly be observed in the amoral and schismatic social climate and divisiveness witnessed today in such anarchistic movements as Black Lives Matter, Antifa, the Proud Boys, white supremacists, and every other faction of identity politics designed to tear asunder the fabric of society. They have outsourced to that principle, either intentionally or by default, their ability to reason independently. However, Group Think will not constitute a viable defense in the presence of Eternal Justice.
Realistically, the term “identity politics” can otherwise be defined, as John F. Kennedy once wrote, “what's mine, is mine, and what's yours is negotiable.” This is in total opposition to the eternal law of creation which one prophetic writer described simply as “self-renouncing love.”
“In the light from Calvary it will be seen that the law of self-renouncing love is the law of life for earth and heaven; that the love which 'seeketh not her own' has its source in the heart of God...” Ellen G. White, The Desire of Ages, p. 19 (emphasis supplied)
“Modern educational institutions do not teach you to think,” Bent said, “but to doubt.” If one is educated to doubt everything he's taught, where does one find genuine truth, without doubting that as well? Should not truth be an absolute, immune to the vagaries of capricious human manipulation? Apparently not – at least by Western educational standards.
After entering the ministry, and serving as a pastor for twelve years, Wayne began to realize that he wasn't really converting anyone to the truth, he was merely playing his part in keeping the institution functional and well-lubricated. He was little more, metaphorically, than an educated oil-can applying its contents to the rusty hinges of a decaying establishment that was fostering an increasingly apostate religion.
“The only valid test of the true church,” Bent said, “is the baptism of the Holy Spirit opening one's eyes to the truth, and with that comes the spirit to obey. It is the Holy Spirit that keeps the soul from sin. Good behavior does not – and there are no prominent church establishments that have embraced this truth.”
Bent questioned if a university education was really necessary? Was it truly what God had called him to do in order to preach a doctrine of truth in an organization that had little appetite for it? or whose current teachings seemed to have hardly more spiritual vitality than a stale Chinese fortune cookie?
This realization, he later understood, was his heavenly Father showing him the fallen and irreparable nature of institutional religion. This caused him to look beyond it to a greater truth that would actually bring life to the human soul, and not simply burden it with irrelevant facts that tended not to promote but to obscure that truth.
“Facts,” Bent observed, “cannot replace the Holy Spirit.” You can load any modern computer with the entire text of the Bible and every publication of truth in history, but the computer will not be converted because it does not contain the capacity for it. It remains nothing more than a soulless, chunk of technologically reconfigured dirt – a condition into which humanity itself is hurtling headlong, with ever-increasing velocity.
In 1978, Wayne created a seminar series which he called Life Supports, based on a study manual he wrote titled Life and How it Supports You. The publication laid out the fundamental truths of how life works – life as God defines it, not the animalistic biology most people believe is life.
In the Fall of 1987, while conducting one of his seminars at a Seventh-day Adventist Church in northern Idaho, local pastors began to understand something that greatly disturbed them; that the pure, undiluted (and to them, unwelcome) truth Bent was presenting would ultimately weaken their own influence and authority over their congregants. With that revelation, the church leadership began trying to dissuade them from attending, and even asked that Bent move the seminar to other than church property.
It should be noted that the particular church in which Bent was holding the series was the same one whose head pastor had previously requested that Wayne teach a weekly Sabbath School class. In the class Bent taught were contained many of the same truths presented in his seminars that prompted the pastor to ask that he take his seminar elsewhere. The church members who had previously accepted the truths Bent taught, now eschewed them simply because one in higher authority in the church had also. Just as the majority of the Jews had rejected the teachings of Jesus because their leadership told them to, so did the denomination that had once, rightfully so, taken the title from Revelation of God's “remnant church.” No more.
In a moment of atypical candor, the pastor told Bent that, in consideration of what he was teaching, he, Bent, must “show himself separate;” meaning that he should separate himself from the Seventh-day Adventist denomination. In short, that minister was counseling Bent to leave a church for espousing some of the very truths that were fundamental to its founding. That would be much like someone telling an American citizen that if he wants free speech he should go to another country, forgetting that the concept is enshrined in the First Amendment to its own constitution (wait for it! Coming soon to a concentration camp near you).
Ever sensitive to the voice of God – no matter the source – Wayne Bent heard that familiar Voice through this apostate SDA minister. So he, and many others associated with him, made their final separation. The apostate religion had, as in innumerable times throughout history, expelled the last remnant of light God brought to them. The result was eternal darkness from which they would never emerge.
What was most amazing to Bent was that all of his teachings were taken directly from the Bible, and were long-held Seventh-day Adventist doctrinal principles. They were also teachings of that same church's acclaimed prophet, Ellen G. White. What they had done in their intentional ignorance and rejection of truth was to effectively repudiate every substantive tenet of their own church's profession of faith, and with it came a de facto repudiation of God, Himself.
Their myopic view of truth seemed to Bent an utterly irrational concept, much like declaring that the laws of gravity do not apply where they were not welcome. One is surely free to make such declarations of faith – or of gravity, for that matter. However, stepping out a 10th-floor window will provide a soul with a very convincing – albeit, short – lesson in Newtonian Physics. And the broken moral laws of God are no less unforgiving.
As previously mentioned, Jesus experienced the same censure from the people and religious leaders of his time. It was a censure for his preaching of identical truths that were contained in their own Torah.
Christ taught a truth that is equally as unpopular now as then. And the consequences to the preacher of truth are the same now as they were to Jesus. The only difference is that current, “civilized” laws do not permit physically killing someone for speaking unpopular truths – yet. Historical records are replete with instances of those being tortured, martyred, imprisoned or exiled, whose only crime was delivering the full-spectrum of divine, naked truth as God would have it. And, it is as unpopular now as it has always been. This is largely because, when discarding the rubbish under which any religious establishments of the age have buried the truth, they thought they were discarding the truth itself. Conflating one's strongly-held ideas and traditions for the truth of God has always been a morally (and mortally) destructive force in Christianity.
“I realized then,” Bent observed, “that it was not ignorance that caused them to resist the plain statements of Scripture, but the fact that they did not want them to be the truth.”
Often, in the midst of people resisting truth, someone will actually, though perhaps inadvertently, state it. “In one meeting I attended, since I was a school board chairman,” Wayne shared, “there were a number of teachers in the room. I quoted fourteen Scripture verses, straight from the King James Bible. A teacher then stood up and she said, 'I guess I don't believe the Bible.'”
Such things came to Bent as a nearly incomprehensible revelation; that those of a church professing the strictest adherence to biblical standards, claiming the title from Revelation as the Remnant Church of God (see Rev. 12:17), should disavow the very foundation on which their faith was established! It seemed much like a fish disavowing water. They can certainly do that, and God will allow it, but the end result is quite predictable for them – and the fish.
— Two —
Choose You This Day
“. . . but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.” Joshua 24:15
— THE DISAFFECTION —
The disturbing and exceedingly distressing realization came upon Wayne Bent that his own church – the very one to which the Holy Spirit had sent him – was rejecting the core substance of their own faith. Just as did the Jewish leaders in the time of Christ's first coming, when they concocted false doctrines about their coming Messiah to suit their own ambitions of perpetuating their nation and their power over the people, so also did Bent's home church. Their core philosophy had realistically become; if you don't like truth, make up your own.
Mark Twain once wrote, “History doesn’t repeat itself, but it often rhymes.”
They ignored plain statements by their own avowed prophet of what would result from refusing to repent of the same errors and contrivances the ancient Jews fabricated for their own self-seeking purposes. Those warnings were plain and impossible to miss, if one desired truth. However, they were largely ignored in favor of more pleasing doctrines that gave them a false sense of security and a license to indulge their flesh, without the consequences – they thought. They did this, until their peculiar light, imparted by the Holy Spirit, departed from them, and they were left in darkness while still believing they stood in, and owned, the light.
“If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!” Matt 6:23
“This is the basic principle of all religions today” Bent said, adding, “It was also the nature of the synagogue in Jesus' day,” as he was quick to learn.
It has been observed that when one has entered the way of God and then departed from it, their end is worse than if they had never known Him. See Luke 11:26 When one knowingly turns away from truth, he turns away from God who gave it. When that happens, the Apostle Paul's declaration in Hebrews becomes the only consequential truth for that soul.
For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, and have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, if they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame. Heb. 6:4-6
— THE DEPARTURE —
On October 3, 1987, thirty-three-years ago at this writing, Wayne Bent was directed, along with a small body of believers, to leave what he had himself believed to be that true remnant church of God spoken of in Revelation. They left the denomination of Seventh-day Adventists, along with those of other churches, and by God's direction, founded The Lord Our Righteousness Church (LOR).
The name comes from two places in the Old Testament Book of Jeremiah (and note the difference in gender expression between the two):
“In those days shall Judah be saved,
and Jerusalem shall dwell safely:
and this is the name wherewith she shall be called,
The LORD our righteousness.” Jer. 33:16
In his days Judah shall be saved,
and Israel shall dwell safely: and this is his name
whereby he shall be called, THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS. Jer. 23:6
The name of the new church intentionally, and clearly, delineated their beliefs in contrast to the current spiritual climate. It declared that any righteousness or goodness of any kind, whatever, came solely from their God; totally extrinsic to, and apart from, any human endeavor.
In 1988, shortly following that historic separation, the church held a camp meeting at a public campground near Hat Creek, California, where over 300 people were baptized. However, it quickly appeared that rejection of fundamental biblical truths was not the pervasive spiritual cancer of only the churches Bent and his brethren had previously left, but of every other denomination of present-day Christianity. They saw that the current beliefs of the modern Christian church were more than just vaguely aligned with ancient Pagan theology, in that they tended to “worship and serve the creature [material possessions and financial wealth] more than the Creator.” Rom. 1:25
Just as did the Jews of Christ's day, when they cherry-picked from the Torah those words that promised they would be eternally the Chosen and favored of God, ignoring divine threats to the contrary if they did not obey Him, so also has the echo of that history been sounded in the congregations of today's Christian churches. It can be clearly witnessed in the demonic tenets of the “Prosperity Gospel,” “the “Secret Rapture” and it's second-chance doctrine, along with innumerable other extra-scriptural beliefs. In short, this age is witnessing the abolition of the Cross – the ultimate ensign of self-sacrifice.
This is not a sacrifice embodied in the passing of a few dollars to a homeless person through the half-opened window of a Cadillac Escalade, but the absolute sacrifice of the self to the sovereign will of God, bearing the loss of everything for His sake.
Bent found in those churches, many who profess the Cross, but virtually none who will take it up as a matter of continual, absolute self-abnegation.
During the Hat Creek Camp Meeting, representatives of local churches from a nearby town thought it their spiritual duty to investigate, and to an extent, invade the private campground and church gathering. They thought to “straighten it out” as to the many doctrinal errors they must be espousing – what they believed were scriptural heresies held by this new, apparently foundling church.
One such incident occurred during a confrontation that took place, revealing the scriptural ineptitude of the would-be inquisitors. The woman leading the group from a local protestant church (claiming to have been a former channeling witch) had berated a small gathering of LOR members for not having their physical Bibles with them at that moment, while indicating that they, the local Christians, all had theirs in hand.
During her monologue expressing how errant were the LOR teachings, the woman erroneously quoted a text from Scripture (without opening her Bible), meant to prove the LOR members were very wrong on a particular scriptural doctrine. The LOR minister present, who did not then have his Bible with him, re-quoted that scripture from memory – correctly. The woman haughtily informed the minister that his correction of her was in error. Upon opening her Bible to the text in question, staring at it for a moment, realizing she had indeed misquoted it, she quietly closed the book and awkwardly changed the subject.
This singular incident was not an isolated one. It was a parable, clearly illustrating the difference between having the printed word in the hand as opposed to possessing the living Word in the heart. This reincarnation of the errors of ancient Israel into contemporary Christianity – this resounding “rhyme” of history – would only increase in its intensity, pervasiveness and evil, until the latter expression would become as corrupt and irredeemable as the former.
— THREE —
“The Split” - A War In Heaven
“And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born.” Rev. 12:4
It is well established amongst all Christian faiths that the Adversary, Satan, the Devil, never tires in his attempts to destroy the works of God, his most hated enemy. Then it should come as no surprise to anyone that he would also assault the remnant, the Lord Our Righteousness Church, whose primary canon of faith was simply “God alone” and the pure faith of His Word to each individual heart. As long as he exists, this spiritual adversary of God will always endeavor to destroy any expression of the Divine in humanity. Because this is the only existential threat to his own kingdom, he puts forth super-human effort to further efface the image of God in man, either by outright persecution, or by the more subtle means of subverting the faith of its members, and of, especially, its leadership.
By compromising the faith of the ministers, members who have not yet acquired a direct, personal and unequivocal God-alone-and-only relationship with Him, are subject to being overly influenced by those leaders, especially, to whom they have a personal affinity or affection. Because of their spiritual immaturity, they tend to place more weight of authority on men than on the expressed Word of God. And if those leaders and ministers themselves do not have that intimate, unshakable relationship, intentionally or not, their counsel will strongly tend toward suborning the faith of their congregants.
This deadly principle has been at the root of every spiritual and moral collapse of every God-established faith in the history of the world. This can be objectively observed by noting that there are over thirty-thousand distinct sects and denominations of Christianity. And each of those represent a different interpretation of the very same Bible that all of them claim to believe and follow as the inerrant Word of God; and on which, they assert, is the only foundation of their faith.
Why? Does God have thirty-thousand different opinions and ideas of what His Word says or means? Does He create an alternate reality for each church, to fit the temperaments of their peculiar dispositions? And if so, why? One cannot find such disparities in the laws of the physical world. Does one find salt in his shaker one day and cyanide the next? Are there thirty-thousand different versions of electrons, protons or neutrons? Or is it true that the Creator has ordered His creation by a definite standard of immutable Law, by which all the universe must comply?
It would seem that what lies at the root of thinking behind so many different interpretations of the same book is the desire for one to make the Word fit their experience, rather than judging their experience by the raw Word, unfiltered by human caprice. It is again trying to pull the horse with the cart.
Once, when asked to address a convocation of ministers at an association of interdenominational churches in Southern California, Wayne Bent stated a deeply profound principle that lay at the foundation of every denominational division and internal conflict. If his words had been taken seriously by the attending ministers, they may have ignited a reformational blaze that would have spread like wildfire through stubble. He stated, simply and concisely, that every division in the Christian Church, every denomination, every faction, every sect and cult, has as its source man's desire to feel comfortable with sin.
Feel comfortable with sin? Feel comfortable with the very thing that has brought all moral declension and physical destruction to this planet? that spiritual principle that induced the race of men to decide that they can better direct their own affairs, apart from divine principles of universal Law? that concept of “independent thought and action” which underlies every act of murder, rape, theft, wars and international conquest?
It could realistically be assumed that one should feel more comfortable with a rattlesnake in their sleeping bag than to lie down with that other serpent. But many prefer the comfort over the peril.
Bent once stated, in a sermon to his congregation while still pastoring a denominational Seventh-day Adventist church in Colton, California, that “it would be better for you to cut your own throat than to utter a single word of unbelief” – so deadly is that sin! And no, for the intellectually dishonest, he was not advocating a Jonestown exit from this world.
Bent once stated that, “I have had doubts enter in my private time, and I've prayed about them – asking God, Why is this?” Knowing that speaking anything aloud (expression deepens impression), strongly influences how one believes, he added, “But I don't utter them.”
— THE “SPLIT” —
In 1989, the Lord Our Righteousness Church experienced just such a doctrinal division as Wayne had described to that gathering of interdenominational ministers. A group of the LOR ministers were displeased with some of the foundational tenets of the church. They advocated a profound change and departure from the very truths that distinguished it from the morass of fallen churches they had left. This included some of the more fundamentalist ministers who were, Bent said, “hoping my message was a conservative one.”
Since Bent knew the articles of the church's faith had been established by God, Himself, drawn directly from the inspiration of the Holy Spirit and not from any human authority, the objecting ministers' proposals could only be incorporated into their body of doctrine by directly violating the revealed will of the Father. This would make them morally and theologically indistinguishable from the snake-pit of Babylonian Christianity from which they had separated.
“As a dog returneth to his vomit, so a fool returneth to his folly.” Proverbs 26:11
Throughout the history of the world, and especially that of the Judeo/Christian faith, there have always been two main, and antagonistic factions: liberals and conservatives. The only thing either has ever fully agreed upon was to crucify Christ, in whatever form He appears. Both always feel threatened whenever a pure and simple truth is presented that is at variance with their own, self-serving interpretations of Scripture. It was so in Jesus' day – Sadducees (liberals), Pharisees (conservatives). And so it is today.
The prophet, Ellen G. White, once elaborated on Christ's conflict with church leaders, writing “As He swept away the rubbish under which the truth had been buried, they thought He was sweeping away the truth itself.” The Desire of Ages, by Ellen G. White, p.307 And again, so it is today.
In the time of Jesus, there were centuries of accumulated man-made rules, doctrines and traditions, not remotely of scriptural or inspired origins. They were, rather, created by the Jewish church leaders primarily for the purpose of maintaining their ascendency over, and control of, the common people of their religion. It has always been so, and still is.
Ministers in this age, as throughout history, violate their sacred trust as shepherds of God's flock by introducing fables, exactions, traditions and man-created doctrines and laws.
“The prophets prophesy falsely, And the priests rule on their own authority;” And the tragedy of it is, “My people love to have it so! But what will you do at the end of it?” Jer. 5:31 NASB/KJV What will be the results of abdicating the responsibility for one's own soul to the authority of fallible men?
When the LOR Church, with its delegated representatives, met in Sandpoint, Idaho, to discuss the option of mixing apostate, man-made articles of faith with the pure revelations of God concerning His last-day church, the result was, as with the rebellion in heaven, one-third of the ministers and members separated from the main body and went their own way. The remaining two-thirds chose to stay with a body of beliefs they knew to be singularly of God.
In that ecclesial confrontation, Wayne Bent addressed the gathering by concisely reiterating exactly what God had inspired in him and others as to the path God's church should follow. He did not coerce, apply pressure or in any manner attempt to constrain the consciences of the people. He simply read a brief statement of how and why God had led them into a pure faith. He then left the meeting, leaving the people to make their own decision. He did not return until they had, as Joshua once enjoined, chosen whether it “seem evil unto you to serve the Lord” and to “choose you this day whom ye will serve.”
Later, it was revealed that of primary interest to the departing ministers was whether they would receive their accrued wages after they had now formally left the ministry and the church. With a great expression of relief on their part, Wayne paid them, in full, and they left with a handful of mammon, and a heart devoid of spiritual truth. They departed, as Scripture describes it, “into outer darkness.” Josh. 24:15
“Again my eyes were opened to the fact,” Bent said, “that people are not interested in truth; they are interested only in their own self-benefits. And once it's clearly stated what truth is,” he continued, “then there is war in Heaven, and the adversary and his angels fight against those who speak and preach the truth.”
“So,” he observed, “the war in Heaven took place, and a third of the angels left.”
— FOUR —
Praying for the End of the World
“...if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us.” 1 John 5:14
“Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing,
but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets.” Amos 3:7
“When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in a flag and carrying a cross.” ~Upton Sinclair
In 1991, God's Spirit came upon the Lord Our Righteousness Church, as a body, to begin praying that He would bring an end to the world. Why? “Because we could see that the world itself was a lie,” Bent said, “based on a lie, supported by a lie, and we prayed that that would end.” This seemingly radical act also offended some of the remaining members; those who did not want their world to end. They were fine with just a membership in the last-day church of God, as long as things didn't get too out of hand. But, loving the world too much to completely let go of it, some disaffected, trading their birthright for “a mess of pottage.” See Gen. 25:29-34.
It was shortly before this, in August of 1990, that U.S. Armed Forces, by order of President George H. W. Bush, prepared for war against Iraq by staging first in Saudi Arabia under the deceptive nom de guerre of Operation Desert Shield. This head-fake was intended to convey the idea that America was merely protecting its ally, the oil-rich domain of the Saudi royal family, from a possible threat of an Iraqi invasion. Not that America cared so much for the Saudis as for their oil.
It also provided a very neatly plausible excuse to establish American military bases on Arab land under the aegis of the 1951 U.S. Mutual Defense Assistance Agreement; a treaty with the Saudis that provides for military protection of their lands and oil fields.
This act of allowing an “infidel” nation (the U.S.) to place an unholy military presence on sacred Islamic soil, violently angered many powerful, conservative Muslims of the dominant Wahhabi sect. Rightly or wrongly, many believed that was the match that lit the fuse to the attacks of 9/11.
Saddam Hussein had already conquered Kuwait, tricked into that military misadventure by U.S. Ambassador, April Glaspie. She had been asked by Saddam, after amassing his own army along the Kuwaiti border, what America's position was with respect to any military activity involving their southern neighbor. Glaspie, undoubtedly by order of the White House, simply told the Iraqi dictator “We have no opinion on your Arab-Arab conflicts, such as your dispute with Kuwait,” – tacitly amounting to a green light for Saddam to invade the tiny emirate.
Essentially all Saddam Hussein wanted was that Kuwait be returned to Iraqi sovereignty. After WWI, the British severed Kuwait from Iraq, which also totally severed Iraq's access to its Persian Gulf ports, its primary – and only – shipping gateway. This placed Iraq in the most unenviable position of being a totally land-locked oil producing country with no access whatever to international waters. It is of no small consequence to rob a nation of its only seaport by which it can transport its petroleum and other exports and imports; realistically, its economic life-line. This forced Iraq to transport all its commodities overland across its vast, trackless deserts, creating an enormous logistical and economic hardship. In fact, by international law, such an action as depriving a nation of access to international waters is considered an act of war. And if they could not transport their goods overland, it required them to appeal to the Kuwaiti monarchy for shipping via the same port the Iraqis used to own. This would be an intolerable humiliation to the pride of any country, and especially to an “Arab-Arab” relationship.
Add to that the insult that Kuwait was slant-drilling into the shared Rumailah oilfield, and it was apparently more than Saddam Hussein's nationalistic ardor could tolerate. Unconcerned with such trifles as international law, (as the West itself has so clearly demonstrated), the partitioning of Kuwait from Iraq was done to weaken whatever Arab nationalism still remained. The desired result was to make it much easier to exercise control over their natural resources. Kuwait subsequently became a British protectorate, until June of 1961, when it was granted independence.
Arguably, Saddam's August 1990 invasion of Kuwait would be analogous to the U.S. taking action to reacquire Texas if it had been partitioned off and stolen by some external, foreign power, like Mexico. Ironically, in the modern political climate, this analogy or the injustice committed against Iraq by stealing its only maritime port and a large part of its oil reserves, is never heard of. It would simply cause too much damage to the plans of the New World Order now being created.
“In the United States of America, it is almost beyond the bounds of acceptable discourse to address the question, why did Saddam Hussein invade Kuwait in 1990? Even to ask the question, one risks the appearance of supporting a repressive dictatorship...” David Keine, Mechanisms of Western Domination: A Short History of Iraq and Kuwait, California State University, Northridge, January 2003
The artificially manufactured emergency, created to justify Operation Desert Shield, led directly to Operation Desert Storm, the January 1991 military campaign launched for the ostensible purpose of freeing Kuwait from an Iraqi invasion that the U.S. itself had tricked Saddam into in the first place. It's just the old Hegelian Dialectic of creating a problem so you can provide a solution.
“At the time I wasn't aware of really what was happening,” Bent mused. “Why was it so important for the United States to meddle in other people's business in the Middle East?” He was quite sure that merely exercising control of their petroleum industry was at best a secondary motive.
His question was answered sixteen months later, albeit in a somewhat oblique manner, on April 19, 1993, when an offshoot of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, called The Branch Davidians, was incinerated by the U.S. Government. The Davidians, who would at that time have been celebrating the Jewish Passover – a day that their leader, David Koresh, and his followers considered holy – instead became a horrifying domestic symbol of the same rapacious Beast that considered Middle East petroleum reserves to be its rightful property. Defy the established order the Beast is creating, and endure the immolation that results.
Many, however, including Wayne Bent, would argue that oil was only a surface issue; that the underlying reasons were more arcane. And they would be, in a measure, correct, since the dark spirit that controls this world cares little for lubrication and fuel except as a means to an end. Its desired conquest is primarily spiritual – the subjugation of the human soul and its separation from God.
As for the Branch Davidians and their celebration of Passover; unlike the Hebrew slaves in Egypt, the Angel of Death did not pass them over. That angel of extermination had assumed a new name: Janet Reno and the U.S. Department of Justice. America had killed seventy-six of its own citizens – twenty-five of whom were children – none of whom had done anything illegal according to any U.S. law. They were simply suspected of things other people imagined they were doing, and did not like – a criterion that would eventually be used against Wayne and his church.
This incident resulted in a sort of epiphany for Bent that would again irrevocably alter the course of his life and his church. The apparently unrelated tragedy of the American government's immolation of the Branch Davidians' compound and the cremation of its church members in Waco, Texas, brought a vivid understanding to him of what the United States of America had become, and most importantly, where it was going. Coupled with the added portent that the tragedy occurred on a holy day, the incident seemed to reveal, in stark relief, the nature of the country he came to view as an expression of the Beast portrayed in Revelation Thirteen.
“A church was destroyed with men, women and children inside,” Bent said. “And the church was attacked by an American tank, which was illegal. And this was done by the Clinton Administration.”
The illegality to which he was referring falls under the aegis of the Posse Comitatus Act – 18 U.S. Code § 1385 – which prohibits the use of U.S. military personnel, and by extension, military armament, against United States citizens, except by an act of Congress. No such act was issued, and the assault was carried out by only the misappropriated authority of the Clinton Administration and its Attorney General, Janet Reno.
It had become self-evident to Bent that America had indeed assumed the image of the lamb spoken of in Revelation that “spake as a dragon.” The nation whose armed forces he had once joined, vowing to defend it and its constitution, and had presented itself as a bastion of peace and freedom, he now saw as indeed speaking and acting as deceitfully as that fire-breathing serpent of the Apocalypse. See Revelation 13:11
. . . if it flies like a dragon; if it belches like a dragon . . .
“I had to take a breath,” he said, “and I realized, Oh, things are not as I thought. You know, liberty, freedom of religion. The Branch Davidians had done nothing that required a military strike against their church. They didn't even have running water in their facility.” And the front door, with its incoming bullet holes that, among other evidence, would have proven the ATF agents fired first against the Waco church – well, it just disappeared. But not, however, before the Davidians' attorneys, who entered the compound during the siege to consult with their clients, were able to examine it, determining that, contrary to later ATF/FBI claims, all the bullet holes in the door indicated that hostile fire was exclusively incoming. No penetrations were observed proceeding from inside the main entrance.
Previous to this heinous crime, Bent had thought there was an intrinsic goodness built into the American system of justice; that such gross injustices were essentially impossible in a “free and just” America. He had agreed with a 19th-century minister and author, that the United States Constitution was God's idea of secular government. Bent now understood that the manner in which that constitution is now being implemented is the satanic idea of its expression.
The previously mentioned prophet, Ellen White, had once written that, “the end is near” when “our country shall repudiate every principle of its Constitution as a Protestant and republican government.”Ellen G. White, Testimonies for the Church, Vol 5, p. 451
It appears that not only the first amendment in the Bill of Rights, guaranteeing freedom of religion, has been “repudiated” but that the entire document has become no more than a list of suggestions by which the government is free to abide, or ignore at will, depending on which best serves its political and economic self-interests. The intended reality of the United States Constitution, Bent realized, is essentially moribund.
Thomas Jefferson once wrote that, "When government fears the people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny." By the spectacle of current events, it is quite obvious that those words were prescient, and that the U.S. Government has now established fear of itself as its primary governing principle in the hearts of its own citizens – who, of course, are singularly responsible for allowing it.
Victimhood is a falsehood.
— Something is amiss in the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave —
In light of the Waco tragedy, the Ruby Ridge incident, the Oklahoma City bombing of the US federal building and other such incidents, there is another set of facts that would make it seem that America is not living up to the mythology of its past years. One very strong indicator of that is the population of Americans, compared to other countries, that are incarcerated in US penal institutions.
Of a total of 223 nations, over 20% of the world's prisoners are in US prisons. This means that one of every five prisoners in the world is in America. That is not “per capita” but in absolute numbers. The United States has as many of its citizens incarcerated as Communist China and Russia combined. To even the casual observer, such a statistic should be a source of wonderment.
It is evident that Divine Judgment is an ongoing, protracted process, not a punctiliar one-time act of God. It expresses itself in that inviolable law of creation, cause-and-effect, or as Scripture states it, whatsoever a man sows, that shall he also reap. Galatians 6:7 Hindus call it kharma; an old American maxim simply says, What goes around, comes around. Whatever its colloquialized expression, it is all part of the means by which this world is brought to a reckoning with its willful departure from the perfect Law of Love.
There is an old saying in the legal profession that the law grinds exceeding slow, but exceeding fine. The spiritual truth of this aphorism is illustrated in Scripture where Jesus, referring to himself, parabolically, as the rejected stone of Solomon's temple said, “Whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.” Matt. 21:44
When a soul – or a nation – refuses to allow itself, in absolute abandonment, to fall upon the Rock, the Son of God, and become a broken, empty vessel for the indwelling of Christ, that Stone becomes an instrument of judgment. In its process, that judgment grinds finely into the uttermost depths of the human existence – both individually and collectively, as both to the person and to the society – leaving nothing concealed.
“For there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; neither hid, that shall not be known. Therefore whatsoever ye have spoken in darkness shall be heard in the light; and that which ye have spoken in the ear in closets shall be proclaimed upon the housetops.” Lk. 12:2, 3
Joseph de Maistre, an 18th-century French lawyer and philosopher, once wrote, “Every nation gets the government it deserves.” This clearly insightful observation is well illustrated in the current social and political affairs of America.
The massacre of fifty-one adults and twenty-five children of the Branch Davidian Church, Bent claims, shocked him into the reality that, “not only do people not want the truth, but they lie openly, and hardly anyone will call them on it.” This applies not only to the government, but the citizenry inclusively, who are responsible for placing their elected officials in power.
The nature of the Beast, against which God has been warring for over six-thousand years, now began to open more deeply to Bent. It was, as he put it, “a brutal, rude beast, and if you don't worship it, he will kill you. That's what he did to the Branch Davidians,” he concluded. “The Beast went in and simply killed them.”
“The appalling injustice of an American administration using law enforcement to violently raid a small, peaceful church was so egregious because it was so unnecessary. Any supposed illegalities perpetrated by the church “could have easily been taken care of in another way,” Bent observed.
In fact, David Koresh was in frequent and direct communication with local law enforcement officials and the county sheriff, specifically for the purpose of avoiding any such confrontations. And it was ultimately determined that of all the firearms they had collected to use as a source of income from selling them at gun shows (which are quite popular in Texas), only one was believed to be questionably illegal, and found to be not so in subsequent investigations.
It was of course the guns and other legal weapons and parts, along with unsubstantiated rumors of child abuse, that were initially used as the principle justification by the Department of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) and the FBI for the arguably Soviet-style raid on their church.
It should be noted, and obvious to any intelligent mind, that the FBI and ATF are equally as culpable in that crime as were the government officials who ordered them to conduct the raid. They are men, not automatons, who supposedly have a conscience and a free will to govern their behavior. Using the same excuse for their actions as did those at Nuremberg – I was only following orders – does not now, as then, carry any more weight of exoneration than it did under the Third Reich.
These incidents led Bent and the church, in 1996, to create a news website, TheWINDS, an acronym for World Internet News Distributary Source; “Distributary,” meaning the branch of a source that does not return to the main stream; in this case, providing researched and verified information not found in the mainstream media – international or domestic. It was intended, he said, “not for propaganda, but to view world events through the eyes of truth; what was actually happening,” and not as the controlled media reported.
During the course of TheWINDS' Internet tenure, an interview was conducted with Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, a well-known and respected British journalist reporting for the London Daily Telegraph (now one of its editors). Evans-Pritchard commented during the interview, that of all the countries to which he was assigned as a reporter and bureau chief, his stint at the Washington D.C. bureau was the most enlightening as to how US news agencies functioned.
He stated that the news media in America was by far the most controlled and manipulated of any country in which he had been assigned. This was quite revealing, since he had been stationed in Central and South America, as well as other third-world countries. This, of course, speaks volumes about the journalistic objectivity and ethics of the one nation on earth presenting itself as the bastion of free thought and moral expression. It appears that the U.S. Constitution's First Amendment enjoining the government against “abridging the freedom … of the press” is actually unnecessary, since business and financial constraints have adequately accomplished that abridgment for them – and with their full cooperation and agreement. By inducing them to self-censor in order to protect their financial interests, they save the government from having to manufacture some typically inane excuse to do it for them.
Evans-Pritchard's final publication prior to being recalled to London was interestingly enough entitled “Goodbye and Good Riddance,” which alone seemed sufficient to express his disdain of the journalistic ethics and biased news reporting he witnessed here.
TheWINDS' intended agenda, as Bent stated it, was “to expose corruptions and illegalities. Everything hidden was to be revealed,” consonant with the biblical pronouncement, “For nothing is secret, that shall not be made manifest; neither any thing hid, that shall not be known and come abroad.” Luke 8:17 “TheWINDS,” he added, “was the first Internet news site established for this purpose. In 1997, World Net Daily began its web publication, and now, “these days, it's everywhere. Everybody's exposing everyone's corruption everywhere. And the Lord is revealing everything that was previously hidden.”
“For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil.” Ecclesiastes 12:14
Could these biblical passages possibly be describing what the Internet has accomplished in the way of information availability? Never before, in all of human history, has there been a time when someone in Munci, Croatia could pass data and information to someone in Muncie, Indiana in a matter of seconds. A goat herder in Somalia, with nothing more than a cheap cell phone, can text a message and a photograph to a relative in Perth, Western Australia, with the tap of a few buttons in one hand, managing an obstreperous goat, with the other.
— Five —
The Heavens Declare . . .
“The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork.” Psalm 19:1
“And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars . . .” Luke 21:25
The following year, after the founding of TheWINDS news website, the church began to understand that in millennia past, men of God had been directed to symbols in the constellations as a tool for scriptural storytelling and instruction and the passing-down of sacred oral history.
As they observed the procession of images in the stars, they began to understand that much of biblical prophecy was portrayed in those heavenly images. And, naturally, as with any other method God employs to communicate His truth to mankind, a satanic perversion and counterfeit was inevitable.
That counterfeit came in the form of historical and contemporary astrology, whereas the former was given as a kind of heavenly picture-book to aid men in understanding what God was doing. In no way was it claimed, or even implied, that those images affected the course of earthly or heavenly matters, any more than a forecast could shape the weather it predicted. Both simply convey what's happening; they do not make it happen.
Astrology, however, in its devilish expression, purported that the stars not only revealed but actually constrained the course of human affairs. The former revealed cause; the latter claimed effect – as if enormous spheres of fusing hydrogen and revolving planetary rocks were capable, other than with gravitational tidal forces, of shaping, rather than simply revealing, earthly events. But then, to most of humanity, religious superstition has always been a viable counterfeit for a godly faith.
“In 1997, we saw Virgo [the virgin, or bride] in the heavens,” Bent observed, “revealing that God's people were to go into the wilderness for three-and-a-half-years,” consonant with the prophecies in Revelation.
At the church's fall camp meeting that year, the moon appeared at the feet of the constellation Virgo, and the sun was in her clothing.
“That's the sign in heaven,” he understood, “that the Bible speaks about in Revelation twelve. We began to look for a place where we could go.” The church then started searching the western United States for an inspired revelation of where they should relocate, finding nothing.
“Then,” Bent said, “God told me one day to hook up my trailer and come to New Mexico, and there He would show me where we would go. I did. That was in 1999. Father showed me a wilderness place to come and we came and brought our trailers and families here to spend the three-and-a-half-years being taught God's special ways and purposes.”
The transition took them to a beautiful little valley of two-thousand acres, where the closest neighbor was nearly four miles away. This uprooting had very God-ordained purposes, not the least being the need for the peace and isolation necessary to most clearly discern the voice of God in one's soul. Urban centers are totally destitute of those qualities, whereas it is virtually impossible, unless one actively resists, to dwell in a wilderness place without being drawn to God's presence.
It was clearly evident to Wayne Bent and his church that the Spirit of God was gradually being withdrawn from the cities of the world, as prophecy had foretold, leaving them utterly devoid of spiritual direction and influence. This was without argument the result of humanity mostly desiring association with one another rather than primarily the companionship of God. In short, godliness and godly living in the presence of the cacophony and utter confusion existing in earthly cities is virtually impossible – unless one has a positive divine calling to be there. The LOR congregation, however, realized that such callings were few, if not by that time, completely extinct. God's withdrawal of His Spirit from the world was beginning with cities, moving outward like a dark, slow motion shock-wave, and the progress was accelerating at a breathtaking speed.
As it was when Jesus regretfully and sorrowfully left the temple in Jerusalem for the last time, so is it now with the fallen state of modern Christianity and the world with its desecrated temples of worship. (See Luke 13:38). God's Holy Spirit, He which communicates the principles, thoughts and character of God to fallen humanity, is now being withdrawn from the earth, leaving to their own devices those who do not want Him and can not be made to want Him.
“Hitherto He had called the temple His Father’s house; but now, as the Son of God should pass out from those walls, God’s presence would be withdrawn forever from the temple built to His glory. Henceforth its ceremonies would be meaningless, its services a mockery.” Ellen G. White, The Desire of Ages, p. 620. (emphasis supplied) As “Slowly and regretfully Christ left forever the precincts of the temple” so also has he abandoned what is now called Christianity. ibid. p. 626 “Behold, your house is left unto you desolate.” Matt. 23:38, Lu. 13:35
— Six —
THE JUDGMENT IS SEATED
“But the judgment shall sit, and they shall take away his dominion,
to consume and to destroy it unto the end.” Daniel 7:26
It was in 2001 that the young church began to realize that the final judgment had begun. Many and varied have been man's attempts to predict in advance what divine judgment would look like. There have been books written on the subject, movies made about it – both secular and religious – but none have managed to even remotely capture the reality of how God would implement that most anticipated, but most generally feared, of prophecies.
It should have been adequately understood, from biblical history, that no prophecy, other than specific, short-term ones, has ever been accurately discerned in advance as to how it would manifest itself. It is only recognized in retrospect – after the fact. But mankind, in its arrogance and pride, cannot seem to cease its futile efforts to predict the outcome of God's prophecies according to its own flawed, arrogant thinking, and then proclaim its errant interpretations to be inarguable truth – until, however, those interpretations fail, abysmally. At that time, those making such proclamations either disappear or go strangely silent – for a while. These false teachers have led many astray, inducing them to rest their weight on man's ideas of what God is saying, rather than on God Himself, who reveals such things in His time.
On September 10th of that year, just a day before the World Trade Center was brought down in a holocaust of fire and debris, Wayne prophesied the incident, posting it on the church's website, accessible to the entire Internet. But even then, he had no idea how its fulfillment would appear. He was simply given the words in symbolism, as were prophets of old, who themselves had no concept of how their utterances would find expression in the real world.
“You have gone far enough,” Bent wrote, “and now I will show you who it is that rules in the heavens. You have built your Babylonish tower, but I will make the top to break off and its foundations to sink into the mire. You will see the stability of the sand you have built on. You will try everything to save it but it will not be saved.”
“The next day, at 8:46 am, it happened,” he said. “God was saying, You will not be able to repair and fix your fallen tower.” That was not to say that another physical tower would not be built in its place, which of course happened. Bent was referring to the nature – the spirit – of Babylon and the divine judgment it had accrued. The Twin Towers were an exquisitely appropriate symbol of mankind's nature; a symbol of rapacious human greed, venality, oppression, and avarice. It was, writ small, the very image in microcosm of every wickedness humanity had indulged, from Eden to dissolution. God, through Wayne Bent was simply proclaiming that the man-created system is doomed to extinction, and will never be re-established.
“Judgment Day is not coming – it has arrived.”
As history now shows, that incident was used to justify yet another American war, this time with Afghanistan as its primary and initial target. However, the convoluted logic of American politics did not stop with simply converting a country, already mostly rubble from centuries of conflict, into smaller bits of rubble. The U.S. had previously decided to create a body of lies in order to extend the war to Iraq, a nation that at the time had the highest standard of living and education of all Arab countries, and which had never done anything wrongful to America – other than accepting the offer of materials to create chemical warfare agents to use against Iran. Who is more culpable for the atrocities resulting from the employment of such horrible armaments; the user, or the supplier who knows what their use will be?
Every piece of intelligence data upon which the US/Iraqi conflict was based, turned out to be false, and falsified, from lies claiming Saddam Hussein had an active program for creating nuclear weapons, to other instruments of mass destruction, to falsified records claiming he attempted to obtain massive quantities of yellow cake – high-grade uranium ore – from Niger. All were simply bold-faced lies manufactured by the U.S., but the American people largely didn't care, as long as they reaped the benefits of the war.
To Wayne Bent, this was an intellectually and morally confusing expression of America's outrage, based on the attacks of September 11, 2001. Was not America's stated position that the “enemy” was Afghanistan, guilty for sheltering Al Qaeda, the supposed perpetrators of the assault? But President Bush was attacking Iraq, which had no provable connections, even tenuously, with Al Qaeda and Osama bin Laden! That seemed much like a man having been rear-ended in traffic, punching his passenger in the nose for it. It was an absolute non sequitur, and logically incoherent.
BABYLON THE GREAT IS FALLEN
“Revelation, chapter eighteen says it clearly,” Bent added. “'Behold, she has become the habitation of devils,' that means adversaries, 'and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird. For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies.
“'And I heard another voice from heaven saying, 'come out of her my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins and that ye receive not of her plagues. For her sins have reached unto heaven and God hath remembered her iniquities'.” Revelation 18:1-5
“There are some evangelists who are preaching repentance,” he adds, “but I wonder if they even know what to repent of.”
And that biblical definition of “devils” he mentioned as being “adversaries”? – one has only to read the news to know that American Babylon has clearly become “the habitation of adversaries.”
— Seven —
A National Geographic Faux-documentary and a Time of Persecution
"And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman,
that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood." Rev. 12:15
In the year 2000, as foretold in Revelation, the congregation of the LOR entered the wilderness in the land that God had prepared for the church to spend its final days.
“Then the woman fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God,
that they should feed her there one-thousand-two-hundred-and-sixty-days” or 3½ years. Rev. 12:16
“In 2001,” Bent said, “we are shown the judgment.”
“In 2004 I was shown there were 1290-days left until the end of the 70-weeks of years prophecy.
“This was the 'midst of the week,'” Bent elaborated, “when the teaching of intercession would no longer be effective. And people who, in their hearts, wanted to leave would start doing that. It was a process of weeding out those who preferred fantasy over truth.” Except it wasn't God who did the weeding, but the former members, themselves. He simply allowed circumstances to arise that revealed that their hearts were not with the church, or God.
The disaffected congregants were not expelled or commanded to leave by any human proclamation; it was God, not Wayne Bent or the church, that brought about the weeding. The departing members simply decided that a life of delusion and make-believe was more desirable than one of uncompromising truth – and the troubles such a life always brings in this world. As with the use of mind-altering drugs, such a choice does indeed seems to make life easier and more entertaining – in the short term; in the very short term.
Not long afterward, in 2007, a film crew from National Geographic arrived to film a documentary about an American religious cult living in the wilderness of the New Mexico desert. Interestingly, it was right at the end of the 70-weeks prophecy that they completed their filming.
The British public, it seems, has a curious affinity for reading of, or watching productions about, the American West, its cowboys and frontier life-style – and its strange religions. Apparently, anything pertaining to a fundamentalist religion appears strange to the average Brit. So National Geographic commissioned a film crew from the UK to document this wilderness “cult.”
Realistically, the term documentary, in this instance, turned out to be a considerable misapplication of the word, since it contained more fairy-tale, horror story and innuendo, than actual fact. Some referred to it as a mockumentary.
At the end of the piece, when the producer included a recorded phone call to Wayne's son, Jeff Bent, there can clearly be heard several somewhat clumsy audio cuts where the editor obviously removed part of Bent's responses to his questions. This was likely done for the purpose of reshaping the narrative, making the younger Bent sound as if he were saying something other than what he intended, or at least to exclude the full context of Jeff's responses. This selective editing occurred throughout the film, to the extent that one church member remarked that if the voices were disguised, listening only to the audio track, he would never have known the story was about his own church community.
After the documentary's final edit and release, Wayne communicated with its producer/director, Ben Anthony, of Dragonfly Productions, reminding Ben that he had told him it would be a documentary about our community – something at least close to factual. Anthony also promised Bent that he would produce the film so that the interviewees, alone, would be speaking, with no voiceover narration. This was important, since a background narrator reads from a prepared script, tending to express the script writer's opinions (in this case, Ben Anthony as both script writer and narrator). But Wayne told Anthony that what he really created was a “monster movie.”
“We shared with the media one hundred hours of information about us” Bent said, “but they finally published forty-eight minutes of fables, twisted logic, and spooky music.”
The most abhorrent parts of the “documentary” were not so much the factual errors but the intentional innuendos, twisting of truth and the lies expressed in multiple parts of the content that were totally fabricated. It became clear that the producer's intended purpose was simply that of furthering his personal agenda, which had only the loosest and most facile connection with the truth. The production was less than a one-dimensional narrative about a quite multidimensional subject. It became obvious that what the British filmmaker desired was a production that would stimulate the baser, most salacious nature of his intended audience.
This should be a warning to anyone who chooses their own story over truth. When those darker components of human nature are aroused, no one cares if the stimulus is factual or not. Daniel Patrick Moynihan, former U.S. Senator and Ambassador to the United Nations, once said that, “Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not his own facts." It appears that Ben Anthony is both factually and morally unacquainted with that truth.
One of many examples of Anthony's incestuous relationship with his own idiomatic version of truth was stated at the end of the film where he said that Wayne Bent predicted October 31, 2007 as “the end of the world” – a claim Bent never made. Following that, Anthony dove yet further into his exorcism of fact, and pasted a blatantly false assertion across the screen in bold, yellow text, stating that because the world hadn't ended on that predicted date, “Michael,” “has set a new date 15th December 2007.”
Both dates were drawn by Wayne from scriptural numerology, not from the over-stimulated imagination of a desert cult leader. Even attempting the most charitable characterization of those aspects of Anthony's production, labeling them as anything other than absolute lies would itself be an assault on the truth; for that is quite accurately what they are.
Neither Wayne, nor anyone else in the church, ever made such claims. In the course of over 95-hours of filming him and the congregation, could it not be logically assumed that if they had recorded even one such pronouncement, by Bent or any other member, they would most certainly have included it in the final edit of their movie? Of course they would – but they didn't – because not only was the claim never made, the church never believed that either date indicated the physical end of the world. This was only one incident of many where Anthony not only took intentional liberties with the truth, but clearly molested it.
Wayne told Ben, numerous times, when Anthony attempted to get him to state the precise manner in which the prophecies would manifest themselves, that just as with the prophets of old, who could not determine how the fulfillment of their own words would materialize, neither could Bent. However, as with so much of today's media, Anthony simply could not allow the truth to get in the way of a good story.
— The Lightening of God —
“For as the lightning comes from the east and flashes to the west,
so also will the coming of the Son of Man be.” Matt 24:27
“And they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us,
while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?” Lu. 24:32
In the electromagnetic impulses of the Internet, broadcast radio and television, and the current world IT infrastructure, can be seen the means of fulfillment of the scripture in Matthew. These impulses spread data on the internet through satellite, landlines and fiber optics, all at the speed of lightning.
Whenever one of the National Geographic “documentaries” about the LOR was broadcast anywhere in the world, the church would immediately begin receiving large quantities of email from that area. Most were highly pejorative ad hominem attacks on the church, but some were from individuals who had “ears to hear” and would communicate their support for the people. But, as Scripture proclaims, God will make even the wickedness and falsehoods of men to praise Him, and to accomplish His ends.
One such incident is the story of a man living in Indiana, over 1,100-miles from the LOR Church community. When he first watched the National Geographic film, he decided the cult and its leader were well deserving of any opprobrium and persecution they received. Then something strange happened: God spoke to the man's heart and told him to watch it again the next time it aired on his local television station. During the second viewing, he saw it with different eyes – he saw it with his heart – and could discern the lies and deceptions perpetrated against those that he came to see as truly a man and a movement of God. This happened without any outside influence or direction, save only the voice of God to his soul.
The man was a Sunday School teacher in a mainstream evangelical denomination, but following his commitment to the truth, his entire family, including his wife, two children and his parents, disowned him. They attempted both emotional and physical coercion to force him to renounce his new-found faith in God, but nothing they used against him was effective, and he remains faithful to the truth he found that day.
This is not at all an isolated incident. There are people in different and diverse parts of the world who saw what could only be described as a scurrilous piece of filmmaking, and yet were able to discern in it the truth for which God had ordained its creation.
The extant reality of all this is that the church could never afford the cost of all the free advertising that the film generated throughout the world. So God, by co-opting National Geographic as His advertising agency, did it for them – three times. That, along with other media productions, eventually brought the knowledge of the Lord Our Righteousness Church and their message to the entire world. It really did not matter that the church's beliefs had been twisted out of all recognition by the filmmakers. Just as with the aforementioned Indiana man, God does the untangling within the heart, translating matters to reveal the truth others have clothed in lies.
Being quite on-board with the journalistic dictum, “If it bleeds, it leads,” the British filmmakers were clearly desiring something more than a boring film about a church in the New Mexico desert who went about their apparently unremarkable daily lives. To them, the Lord Our Righteousness Church must have appeared as a somewhat slightly modernistic knockoff of more well-known sects like the Amish, Mennonites or Warren Jeffs' FLDS offshoot of the Mormons, all of whose stated purposes were to isolate themselves as much as possible from the modern world, for the purpose of cloistering and spiritual purity. Not so the LOR congregation. To them, “spiritual purity” comes from God, not geography – although certain geographies are more conducive to communion with Him.
The remote relocation of that church community was not for the purpose of independence from mainstream modern civilization, or even for the goal of self-sufficiency (they do have motorized vehicles, grid-supplied electricity, power tools and running water, etc.), but rather for the isolation it affords from the spiritually deafening noise and dark spirit intrinsic to the world they were leaving. They are very much aware that they are in the world, but not of it.
Any true child of God is quite willing to march into hell for a heavenly cause, but only at their Father's direction, not out of their own self-initiative or imagination of what they think He wants. It's that latter, fatal error, that has been the spiritual demise of a multitude of professed Christian faiths – acting out a form of the Word in the flesh.
During this time, the church's Internet news site, TheWINDS, received many hundreds of emails from viewers of the British film. As previously mentioned, the church could always tell when the movie aired in different parts of the world; TheWINDS would receive a flood of emails in a short time that would taper off until the next showing. The church received correspondence from nearly every First World country and a number of Second and Third World countries as well.
Many, believing the British narrative, were highly critical of the church and Wayne Bent, and their correspondence was often replete with contempt and even threats. The site also received many deceitful attempts to out the group as only seeking to enrich itself by seizing any funds or assets they could cajole people into donating – a very common practice among godless cults presenting themselves as godly.
The thinly-veiled trickery came mostly in the form of individuals pretending to have thousands of dollars in savings or land they wanted to donate to the church if they were permitted to join. They were likely unaware of the gross transparency of their subterfuge, and perhaps some were even sincere in their attempts. All offers, however, either of money or real-estate, or any form of material consideration, were politely refused. Even those who seemed to genuinely desire to attach themselves to the wilderness church were told that they could learn from its publications and most importantly from God, Himself, just where they were. They were counseled that they did not need to change their physical location to New Mexico for that purpose. God is everywhere, and most strongly with those who have a heart for Him.
Some of the correspondence, however, was insightful and friendly. Many understood that the church was legitimately being led by God, and desired nothing more than to bless it with their approbation and acceptance. They asked for nothing but to communicate their support.
In spite of the dishonesty, lies and unsubstantiated aspersions contained in the British film, Wayne was fully submitted to the results of the National Geographic “hit piece” even with all of its intended distortions. He saw the events as God-ordained and a fulfillment of the prophecy in the ninth chapter of Daniel, stating that they would come to “destroy the city and the Sanctuary;” which, according to Bent, was precisely the effect that it had.
What most people do not know, and even modern-day professed Christians do not seem to understand, is that the Bible is foremost a spiritual book. It carries within its writings its own definitions of the terms, symbols and imagery it employs to convey God's purposes. God could not rely on the external world of men to produce their own capricious, self-defined interpretations of His Word. But that has not at all deterred men from trying, as illustrated by the previous reference to over 30,000 separate factions of Christianity.
The term “cult” as applied to the LOR Church, and many others, is commonly used in a pejorative sense. It has, in its usage, a somewhat malleable or fluid definition which can be morphed into whatever form most suits its detractors. It is then used to brand particular groups as crackpots, religious fanatics, heretics or worse – dangerous – often incorporating, somewhere in their diatribe, the term Kool-Aid.
The etymological source of the word cult, however, has its origin in the same root as culture. That's it! Simple and benign. Any negative baggage attached to it must be fabricated by the user since it is not contained in its definition.
Had the LOR members built a nice, holy-appearing, brick-and-mortar church, with all its attendant ornaments – crosses atop an ornate steeple, gilded arched entryways, and frocked ministers with gold crosses hung about their necks, with its congregants dwelling amidst others in a city or suburban community – they would very likely have been accepted as just another Christian denomination or sect. But when a group of believers decides to purchase land and live apart from that accepted cultural scenario, then for some undefined reason they become eligible to be tagged with the epithet of “cult” and all its attendant derogatory and fabricated adjectives.
It seems then that the common functional (and subjective) definition of a cult is simply the other guy's religion; any group holding beliefs significantly divergent from generally accepted orthodoxy. This would, of course, have placed Jesus and his disciples squarely in the center of that common definition. And everyone knows what the result of that was: the killing of their “heretical” leader and all but one of his disciples.
George Santayana was a philosopher, not a prophet, but his words seemed quite prophetic: “Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” Listen for the echoes.
— Eight —
A Messiah, a Consummation and a Prison Cell
“Religious liberty might be supposed to mean that everybody is free to discuss religion.
In practice it means that hardly anybody is allowed to mention it.” ~G.K. Chesterton
“Somehow freedom for religious expression
has become freedom from religious expression.” ~Dinesh D'Souza
July 5, 2000, after relocating earlier that year to the newly acquired land in New Mexico, a most astonishing thing happened. Bent recounts that moment:
“... as I sat in my living room chair, I was strongly directed by God, 'You are Messiah.' At this moment, the Spirit I had previously felt in the land entered into me. Now this Spirit of perfect rest and peace was no longer out there and influencing me. It was fully in my own soul and was identified with my own person. That Spirit was now who I was. I became God-possessed. This was my deliverance and the end of all my human woes.
“This anointing was a momentary shock. How could this be? The Father immediately pointed me to the Scriptures. 'Now he which stablisheth us with you in Christ (Messiah), and hath anointed (Messiah-ed) us is God.' 2 Cor. 1:21. 'Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ (Messiah).' Eph. 4:13.
“The Father had just decreed my deliverance. He had appointed me to His heavenly purposes that all men might be brought there by faith. My faith immediately laid hold of the spoken word to my heart and the connection was made. This is the WORD I have learned to trust in. The Scriptures were clear; the believing man was to be brought to the fullness of Christ, the fullness of Messiah. God had spoken that divine existence into me at that very moment.”
An interesting side note to this is that there were many Bible scholars who were predicting that Messiah would come in the year 2000. And just as the great majority of those in Jesus' day missed his coming, so also did many in this day, simply because his advent was not optically consistent with what their churchs and teachers were declaring as the only acceptable manner of his appearing. Messiah apparently didn't get that memo.
“We are now in the 21st year since that happened,” Bent wrote.
Up until that time the church had expected Christ to return in the sky, when Jesus would arrive in the clouds, and those who believed in him would ascend up into the air to meet him. They were not expecting Jesus to return in one of their own. It was later made clear to the people that Jesus came to the Jews as one of their own, just as the messianic prophecy of Deuteronomy 18:15 declares: "The Lord thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken."
When his anointing came, Bent momentarily considered the personal cost of being Messiah. The world in general would consider him a cult leader, and professed Christians would call him a false christ, quoting scriptures warning against following those who say they are the Christ, or live in the desert. He was also painfully aware of the testing that would come to his congregation, because their spiritual experience had heretofore been predicated mostly on their religious opinion.
As pretentious as the claim of being anointed in such a manner may sound to many, especially since there are so many Christians who look for anything upon which they can slap the label of heresy, it is not the sacrilege they may suppose – or hope it to be. That word, messiah, carries with it a great deal of unwarranted mystique and even superstition, when in reality it comes from the Hebrew word mashiyach, which simply translates as “anointed.” While it has been mostly applied to religious figures, and most widely to Jesus of Nazareth, there are other applications in Scripture where it is not even associated with a religious personage. It rather refers to someone who is anointed by God for a particular mission, “as all Christians are,” said Wayne. “That is the word He [God] used when He told me I was Messiah – anointed as a messenger.”
In the Old Testament, for example, mashiyach was applied to the Persian King, Cyrus the Great. So, in the Bible, an unbelieving, heathen monarch was referred to as messiah. The Greek word used in the New Testament to refer to Jesus, was Christos, from which is obviously derived the word Christ, and also means “anointed.”
So any Christian, Bent says, who has an anointing, or mission from God, could be justifiably (though to most people, controversially) called a messiah. But the word itself has taken on a reputation of such mythical proportions that only the very brave, the very stupid, or those actually anointed by God for a defined purpose and mission would ever accept a title of such linguistic contention. There is just too much human-created baggage and misuse attached to it for one to unnecessarily bear its weight. That is, without the firm conviction of a true anointing (messiah-ing) given by God.
To the inflexible, ossified mental processes of modern religious thinking, the word conveys only images of wild-eyed, Jonestown-style, self-proclaimed preachers of religious heresy. And often such imagery is mixed in with some demonic method of departing this world, claiming God's direction in the matter (think Kool-Aid, comets and purple shrouds, etc.).
There are approximately 1,500 so-called cults in America. Of that number, only two (the Branch Davidians not among them) have engaged in suicide as a means of spiritually leaving this earth. But in the opportunistic reasoning of this age of egocentric, self-styled religion, that's all it takes to create a causal link, damning everything remotely resembling anything that's just too – well – distributary. Could it be that this modern-day intense fear of non-mainstream religions comes not from the possible terror of becoming the victim of a suicide cult as much as from the fear that there may actually be truth involved that would just be too upsetting to their established doctrines? too crosswise to their comfortable religion – too crucifying to self?
In addition to any number of epithets aimed at Wayne Bent, there is the frequently-applied adjective of self-proclaimed messiah, so as to strongly imply that God had nothing whatever to do with assigning that title to him. It is a certainty that Jesus, as well, was accused of promoting – or self-proclaiming – himself as Messiah. The Jews certainly thought so when they demanded of him, “Tell us, by what authority doest thou these things? or who is he that gave thee this authority?”
Is it not reasonable then, considering the extreme divergence of Jesus' ministry from mainstream A.D. 30 thinking, that a man anointed by God today, would have to endure much the same unjust calumny?
Well, of course not! modern Christians would assert, claiming there are so many substantive differences between the heretic, Wayne Bent, and the Nazarene of the New Testament! But when questioned about those differences, the only responses they seem to dredge up would amount to an argument of no more substance than debating the relationship of peanut butter to petunias – and their scriptural arguments against him even less so. People, it seems, have an innate tendency to judge matters of which they have little or no knowledge – other than, perhaps, what someone else tells them, who themselves also have no knowledge of the matter.
“There is a way [a belief] which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” Pro. 14:12
The exegetical logic and intellectual dishonesty they apply is akin to equating the verse about the woman caught in the act of adultery, with the one that says “Go thou and do likewise.” But when a soul has no firm foundational relationship with the Author of truth, then, as with the pair in Eden, the sewing of fig leaves commences in order to cover the soul's spiritual nakedness. Human logic and reasoning are set in conflict with God's declared truth, and any rational being need not engage in overly strenuous hemorrhoidal isometrics to conclude who will prevail in that tussle.
Christians, theologians and religionists of this day do not understand the depth of meaning Scripture places on its description of fallen human nature, and how purely and intensely wicked it is. They do not realize that were they, and their currently-held beliefs, to be transported back to the time of Christ, they would be among the loudest at Jesus' trial to shout “Crucify him.” Despite their denials to the contrary, modern pulpits have this effect on their congregations because their preaching is so anodyne and contains so little encouragement to seek God individually, rather than simply accepting the spoon-fed, corrupt theology of this time. That includes even – and especially – the preaching of things that are actually true. Their congregants do not realize that they must, by the Spirit of God, make those truths their own. If they do not, then even the truth is not truth – for them – and they are just as lost as if they had no faith at all. Perhaps more so.
That comparison may seem a bit of a stretch to many were it not so closely aligned with the obvious insanity and intellectual dysmotility of thinking in this age. The socially derogatory application of the terms millennial and snowflake did not, after all, erupt out of a vacuum. They were established in the modern cultural lexicon by a few thinking individuals who clearly observed the non-analytical nature of 21st-century thought emanating from those adults who never quite emerged from intellectual adolescence.
Those thought processes, of course, would be the same as that of post-modernism that led to the morally destructive concepts of victimhood, unearned entitlements and other equally incoherent concepts of logical absurdity – much like the current surge of membership in the Flat Earth Society.
The above concepts are not as alien to each other as one might think, since they each require essentially the same willful repudiation of both physics and rational thinking – the same repudiation of rational thinking that spawned the Inquisition, the Crusades, the Dark Ages and every persecution of truth throughout time.
People are simply not prone to thinking beyond their emotions and how they feel about something, which is a direct result of the abysmal higher or lower educational system to which they have been subjected. They never give thought to the fact that using one's emotions as the evidence of the truth of anything is very much the ideology of a drug addict. They will only allow the entrance of specific ideas that do not upset their sensitive emotions, but that will make them feel good (think: Prosperity Gospel, once-saved-always-saved, heroin and methamphetamine). Only it is infinitely easier to rehabilitate a drug addict than those addicted to such false dogma. Bent once commented that the hardest people to convert to simple, biblical truth, are theologians.
The comparison of a drug addict to one who directs their life according to how they feel, is not the metaphorical overreach some may think. The emotions of a person are largely created by psychotropic chemicals in the brain that seldom have any relation to the truth of anything except their idiopathic chemistry. Their emotions come only as a conditioned response to some past event or stimulus that likely has no real relationship to what is currently happening with them. One may as well make decisions on raising their children based on ideas emerging from the hallucinogenic influence of LSD as they would in deciding other life issues by how they feel. Feelings are never the predicate upon which to build a character – or anything else – except perhaps, lunch.
Interestingly, few ever seem to make the connection between their responses to Bent's spiritual teachings and circumstances, with those Jesus had to endure in his time at the hands of his own church leaders. Or if they do, they are strangely silent about those similarities. Understandably, very few Christians would find it a pleasant intellectual exercise to honestly consider their own likeness to the commonly maligned ancient sects of the Pharisees and Sadducees. From the pulpits of modern Christianity, one gets the impression they would almost rather find similarities of character between themselves and the Devil – but certainly not with the persecutors of Jesus – as if there is a difference.
In short, the character assassination directed at Wayne Bent and his church sprung from the unthinkable, yet commonplace phenomenon of a generation that has abandoned their thinking, discernment and decision-making faculties to their emotions, ministers, other holy men – and likely also to the NFL. They attend institutions of “higher learning” for the purpose, one would assume, of actually – well – learning something higher. But then they promptly surrender, without question or reason, whatever independent thinking capacity they may have, to their teachers, pastors, theologians and any variety of information sources they can Google up. And if, per chance, they should stumble upon some naked truth that requires a cross, they attempt, in a near panic, to deny it by clothing it with the “filthy rags” of their own weaving. If they don't want to receive a particular cutting truth, they will construct a rationale that explains why it doesn't apply to their present situation.
Ah, but truth – especially divine truth – is not quite so easily suppressed. Augustine once commented that “Truth is like a lion. You do not have to defend it. Let it loose; it will defend itself.” And that is precisely what Wayne Bent did.
The depth of prevalent modern thinking should be more realistically associated with the philosophy of sub-human primates and other animals whose lives are driven exclusively by emotion and feeling, rather than by reason; if it feels good, do it; if it doesn't feel good, don't do it. Good advice – if one is a raccoon. Human: not so good.
As Wayne Bent sees it, the major separation between mankind and the animal kingdom is that humanity, created in the image of God, was given the ability to make decisions predicated on logic, truth and morality, even when the right thing to do is clearly opposed to their own perceived self-interests. When that divine quality vanishes from the human soul – as it is surely doing in this last century – there remains no qualitative moral difference between man and animal. Humanity becomes little more than a race of significantly devolved primates with the mental capacity of creating and implementing the technologies of modern computers and warfare, but with no soul to save. Human brilliance and the light of God's truth in the soul are not even distant relatives.
This is not what God intended, but it is surely what mankind chose in Eden when it separated itself from Him, electing to create its own fanciful paradigm of life and reality, apart from the authority of its Creator. Once separated from God by disobedience, humanity conjured its own, personal virtual reality, as it were. The universe, in their narcissistic delusion, now revolves around them rather than God.
However, to test reality during rush-hour traffic, one may wear the most technologically advanced VR headset that tells him a city street crossing is free of oncoming vehicles, but the result is still road-kill. God's reality trumps virtual reality – always. And one's feelings, emotions or desires about reality cannot in the slightest, alter it. But that never seems to stop them from trying. But there are just some matters in which persistence is not a good idea.
The truth of contemporary, self-destructive Christian theology is that it has abandoned its legacy of God alone, and only, and assumed essentially the same belief structure that caused Jehovah to bring a world-wide flood upon His creation, and also the same as caused Him to divorce ancient Israel – His “chosen people.” They don't seem to comprehend that what God can choose, He can also unchoose.
When the prophecies of the coming Messiah, in the first century, were not fulfilled according to their fraught, self-serving interpretations of Scripture, the Jews simply rewove an expositional tapestry of their own devising that illustrated how they believed God should have accomplished the fulfillment of His prophecies – but did not.
Again, the tail wags the dog.
While in prison Bent wrote that “God sent the Anointing for judgment, and the Scripture declares this very event. 'His time has come to sit in judgment.' Rev. 14:7 NAB. The word 'judgment' here in the Greek is 'krisis.' It means that people should turn to God, for the time of His crisis has come. The coming of the Anointing is the 'everlasting gospel.'
“As we have seen, since the Anointing came upon me, a great crisis has come upon the earth in war, earthquakes, tsunamis, and the destruction of our freedoms. God began His crisis in 2000 when He sent His Anointing to appear in human flesh once again. It was all published on the Internet so that every eye could see.” Wayne Bent, A Prisoner of the Lord, Mar. 11, 2013.
“Behold, I will send my messenger [the Anointed for the age of judgment], and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the LORD of hosts.
But who may abide the day of his coming?
And who shall stand when he appeareth?
For he is like the fire of the refiner,
And like the soap of the fullers.
And he shall sit refining and purifying the silver;
And he shall purify the sons of Levi;
And cleanse them like gold, and like silver;
That they may be Jehovah’s ministers,
Presenting unto him an offering in righteousness.”
“This is an allusion to a chemist purifying metals. He first judges of the state of the ore or adulterated metal. Secondly, he kindles the proper degree of fire, and applies the requisite test; and thus separates the precious from the vile.” Adam Clarke, Commentary on the Bible, 
The “Jerusalem” where this ordeal takes place, and the timing of its intense process is described in Strong’s Concordance:
“metaphorically. ‘the City of God founded by Christ,’ now wearing the form of the church, but after Christ’s return to put on the form of the perfected Messianic kingdom.”
“The appearing of Messiah in the midst of His people” Bent explained, “is what initiated this intense, judging, burning, external and internal Holy Fire, and it was for the purpose of perfecting them and bringing them 'to their end' in Him – and thus to the blessing and rest which is the final result of that fire.
“This is the lot of Messiah’s people” Bent explained, “to 'come to their end in Messiah' as He brought me to my end in Messiah on July 5, 2000. I am a living personification of what this means for everyone.”
This “personification” and whom it includes was briefly illustrated by Paul when he employed the term offscouring, as used in the King James Version.
“Being defamed … we are made as the filth of the world, and are the offscouring of all things unto this day.” 1Co 4:13
Unto what day? Unto any day in which it is applied. That word, offscouring, in its original Greek definition carries with it the stigma of being the worst of rejected humanity. According to Strong's Lexicon, it is defined as:
1) what is wiped off
2) dirt rubbed off
3) off scouring, scrapings
The Athenians, in order to avert public calamities, yearly threw a criminal into the sea as an offering to Poseidon; hence the term became used for an expiatory offering, a ransom, for our child, i.e. in comparison with the saving of our son’s life let it be to us a despicable and worthless thing. It is used of a man who in behalf of religion undergoes dire trials for the salvation of others.
The Amplified Bible adds to that:
“Everyone left behind in Zion, all the discards and rejects in Jerusalem, will be reclassified as ‘holy’—alive and therefore precious” - “After the Lord has washed away the moral filth of the daughters of Zion, pride, vanity, haughtiness, and has purged the bloodstains of Jerusalem [when each soul’s crucifying of the Anointing within it, like Jerusalem crucified Jesus, has been purged from it] from the midst of it by the spirit and blast of judgment and by the spirit and blast of burning and sifting.” Isaiah 4:3-4 Message Bible, Amplified Bible.
Bent wrote, “Few humans have experienced the blessedness of the rest prophesied for this time – a rest from themselves, a relief from their natural human impulses having any power to influence them, pressure them, divert them, hinder them, or move them to do anything – a rest where only the voice of God to their souls can move them now.
“Father sent His mighty harvesting message at the beginning of our history as a church family, to harvest us from the fallen churches. And now at the end He had sent His mighty harvesting messages again, to harvest us from this world altogether, and our ability to be able to live on in it – in preparation for entering us into the change and translation from it.”
It is important to note that in the Judgment, all hearts have been confirmed in their beliefs, whether that belief is in absolute surrender to the living God, or absolute surrender to the soul's counterfeit, self-created god of flesh and its rightful husband, Satan. In these days, when a Christian pastor, or his congregation, study the Bible to assemble proofs of their faith, they are performing little more than a self-serving exercise in confirmation bias. They are looking for anything to corroborate their preconceived doctrines, and will give no place whatever to a God-given truth – or to God, for that matter – that disturbs their fabricated religious paradigm.
— Nine —
THE CONSUMMATION OF THE MARRIAGE OF THE LAMB
“Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come,
and his wife hath made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen,
clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.” Revelation 19:7, 8
“No right way is easy in this rough world.” John Muir
In Scripture, and in history, both of earth and of the entire universe, one of the two most august, portentous and unfathomable occurrences in all of time was the sacrifice of the Son of God for the salvation of the human race – a sacrifice of such immensity that no finite mind will ever fully comprehend it.
The most well-known and quoted Scripture verse in the Bible, John 3:16, reveals that the plan of redemption was only the outworking of God's equally incomprehensible but all-inclusive love. Yet that same, infinite Love was willing to allow His only begotten, eternal Child to suffer the most torturous and shameful death that all the demons of hell could devise through human agency. It is a Love that some poor deluded souls have labeled Divine child abuse. And yet, it was a marvelously voluntary act of the Son.
Of the incarnate Son it was written, “Jesus did not count heaven a place to be desired while we were lost. He left the heavenly courts for a life of reproach and insult, and a death of shame. He who was rich in heaven's priceless treasure, became poor, that through His poverty we might be rich. We are to follow in the path He trod.” E. G. White, The Desire of Ages, p. 416
This inspired insight into the purposes of God's heart does not at all comport with the contemporary Christian theology of a “prosperity gospel.” That pernicious dogma espouses the idea that God is mostly just the proprietor of some kind of celestial banking system whereby men can make any withdrawal, on demand, that suits the desires of their flesh. And such demands are always accompanied by reminding God (in case He forgot) of all the promises they can misinterpret and wrest to their temporal advantage.
That word, wrest, as used in Scripture, is an important word to consider. It has the same root as “wrestle”: “to combat an opposing tendency or force.” (Webster) The “force” against which the ancient Jews (and modern Christians) wrestled was only that of God, Himself. The word is used just five times in Scripture, and in every instance it refers to the twisting and distorting of judgment, as if to carve and constrain a puzzle piece into a place where it does not belong. This invariably results in a perversion of judgment, and ultimately the self-annihilation of the offending agency, which is, in this instance, the entirety of the human race.
One of the most heretical acts of modern religion has been to make a deity of the Scriptures, twisting and reinterpreting them to make their god do and say anything that they desire of him. In this way they make themselves to be God by proxy, causing the inspired texts to appear to sanction their lusts and self-interests. Thus, they have created God in their image. But when God speaks for Himself, it causes their vacuous theology – their lower-case god – to collapse under the weight of its own fraud. This same convoluted logic lies at the root of every moral disease that has infected Christianity, and is akin to the Catholic doctrine of transubstantiation – essentially creating God in their own image.
This concept is seen in its most counterfeit holy form of making the Bible essentially, and only, a rule book for behavior; a kind of self-help manual rather than a revelation of who God is, and what HE desires to make of fallen humanity. This doctrine places upon man the burden of performance (with God's help, of course) rather than upon the re-creative power of Christ to accomplish the transformation of fallen man into the God-like image of a son. And just how much help does He need to accomplish this act of restoration?
Considering how much help their christ needs to do this work, one could well question whether he was ever resurrected, or he just remains in the tomb.
"What is the difference between a dead Christ, whom the women went to anoint, and a living Christ? A dead Christ I must do everything for. A living Christ does everything for me." Andrew Murray, Jesus Himself
The Apostle Peter wrote that they wrest the Scriptures unto their own destruction; and destruction is surely taking place in this time when justice is almost universally perverted. The wresting continues as contemporary Christianity ceaselessly persists in conflating their God with an indentured servant to their principles of self-seeking. So is it any surprise that such an attitude would be carried into one of the greatest and holiest symbols of His self-sacrificing love – marriage?
One of the most clearly seen of those perversions, in both Christians and unbelievers, can be viewed through the moral destruction of that God-ordained institution. In the conservative and fundamentalist sects of Christianity, such perversion is most vividly seen in the onerous subjugation of women to the often tyrannical exercise of the husband's “scriptural” authority over them. It becomes a kind of invisible, yet equally oppressive, spiritual burka. Based primarily on the text that says “Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord,” (Eph. 5:22) they nearly always exclude the context set forth in verse 25 that states “Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it.” Many are the Christian households where the wife is reduced to a level of servility that even most godless homes would never consider.
Christ does not emotionally enslave or oppress his Bride, he gave up his life for her! He does not boss her around, he constrains her with his sacrificial love. Her obedience to him is not founded on a fear of retribution or punishment, but on the heart-knowledge that he has elevated her welfare and happiness above that of his own.
For the unbeliever – well, that needs little elaboration. The world largely sees the traditional, God-based union of marriage as archaic, obsolete and at the very least, morally arcane. With them the standards for integrity and virtue have been assigned to obscurity amidst a cataclysm of sexual (and general) perversion. They honestly believe that their self-created perspective on moral rectitude is quite adequate, but they miserably fail to see the results it has had on their own society and culture.
All of this has essentially robbed that divine institution of its power to convey to the heart the very image intended; that of the overarching love and care the heavenly Husband has for His beloved Bride. If by no other illustration of the intended power and importance in the symbol of marriage, it can be seen in reverse by the unrelenting, hellish warfare conducted against it by demonic forces.
Something needed to be done; something that would rescue that most beautiful, living parable from the cesspool into which it had been cast. But not with the objective of resurrecting it in the world's estimation, and again making it an object of veneration. That is now, in this judgment day, an impossibility. It was to be brought forth as yet another facet of the Judgment.
Evidence in a court of law is not presented by the prosecution for the purpose of exonerating the accused, but rather as a means of establishing guilt. So it is now, in the mufti-faceted expression of God's judgment. The world, and indeed God's own professed people, have so polluted and destroyed the emblem of His love, that it no longer serves its purpose. As with the Ceremonial Law of the Old Testament, disannulled at the Cross, so marriage in this world no longer fulfills the purpose for which it was created – a symbol of the Divine Husband's loving care for His wife.
God must now illustrate, again, what He intended when marriage was first instituted in Eden. Only this time, not as a blessing to man, but as an indictment against those desecrating it.
If the sacrifice of the Lamb of God was the first of the two greatest events in human history, what is the other?
"And in that day seven women shall take hold of one man, saying,
We will eat our own bread, and wear our own apparel:
only let us be called by thy name, to take away our reproach.
In that day shall the branch of the LORD be beautiful and glorious,
and the fruit of the earth shall be excellent and comely
for them that are escaped of Israel." Isa. 4:1, 2
In Scripture, as we have observed, Christ is portrayed as the heavenly Husband who came to redeem His Bride from the one who usurped His authority over her. It was Satan, the serpent of Eden, who convinced God's children that he would be to them a more understanding and compassionate husband than the One who threatened them with death if they ate, or even touched, the fruit of that certain tree.
As history has shown, whether or not they believe it, nearly every human occupant of this planet knows the story of the Fall. But few are aware of the astonishing depths to which God descended in order to win back His wayward children – His chosen Bride. And the second part of that story is equally the scandal as was the great sacrifice of the Cross to those of Christ's day.
Scandal! The Cross? How can that symbol, out of which we have created such wonderfully ornate and beautiful artifacts and jewelry, be a scandal? Why, that would be worse than claiming Michelangelo's Pietà is just a worthless chunk of rock!
The scandal God brings to every age to separate the true from the professed; those seeking God for Himself from those seeking Him for themselves, is perfectly designed for the contemporary social and cultural sensitivities of that particular time. The Cross today carries with it none of the shame and ignominy as it did in the first century. It has been corrupted into a relatively meaningless symbol that is so far removed from its original context as to be nearly worthless as any illustration of the true depth of God's sacrifice.
The first part of the humiliation of God's Son lies in a fact of history that for a Jew to be executed on a Roman cross – the symbol of the Babylonian sun-god, Tammuz – would be, to a Jew, of greater humiliation than any other death imaginable. So violently hostile were the Jews to such Pagan symbols that they were known to assault and kill Roman soldiers foolish enough to carry those graven images through their holy city – even knowing the terrible retribution Rome would inflict.
For a Jew of the first century to be crucified would have been worse, in modern imagery, than being cut in peaces and fed to pigs. There was none of the romanticism ascribed to crucifixion in the days of Christ that is witnessed in the washed and sanitized, jewel-encrusted gold ornaments that are seen in churches today, and hung round the necks of so many.
One can only attempt to imagine the most shameful, ignominious and degrading manner of execution that devils can stimulate the human mind to conjure, and then magnify that result by any conceivable cultural exponent, and it still cannot reach the magnitude of shame it represented to any religious Jew of the first century to be hung on that Pagan symbol. This unimaginably gruesome form of execution, refined over the centuries and raised to its pinnacle of cruelty, humiliation and torture by the Romans, was intended to be the most degrading and painful method of capital punishment possible. The Romans were strong into deterrent retribution – and they were very good at it.
That is what God did to His Son, for the sake of redeeming humanity! And that is also where the scandal comes in.
The Apostle Paul wrote, “we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness.” 1 Cor. 1:23 That word, stumblingblock, in the Greek used by Paul, is “skandalon” from which is obviously derived the English noun scandal – that which “offends established moral conceptions, or disgraces those associated with it.” Webster And few there be in this age who are willing to endure, as did Jesus, the shame of truth that the Cross brings to them.
The willing humiliation of God did not end with the Cross, however. As fallen human nature instinctively attempts to rise higher and still higher in its self-interest and self-exaltation, so, equally, and more so, does the Spirit of God descend into the bottomless depths of humility and self-sacrifice for the sake of His people, His children – His Bride. Only the Cross was not the end of the Father's humiliation and sacrifice. There was yet another great skandalon to come for God and His people.
In Scripture, skandalon has a far greater depth of meaning than is adequately conveyed by the Middle English word “stumblingblock,” or even by its modern version. In biblical Greek, it is used to denote a kind of snare:
Movable stick or trigger of a trap, a trap stick a trap, snare, any impediment placed in the way and causing one to stumble or fall, (a stumbling block, occasion of stumbling) i.e. a rock which is a cause of stumbling, fig. applied to Jesus Christ, whose person and career were so contrary to the expectations of the Jews concerning the Messiah, that they rejected him. Strong's Greek Lexicon, #4625 (emphasis supplied)
God has, throughout history, used skandalons – stumblingblocks – to differentiate the hearts of those who are truly His from those that are merely professing their allegiance to Him for the sake of personal gain. It may be a desire for prosperity and possessions, or simply a fear that God will kill them if they do not make the right confession, or do the right things, or use the right words – or any other superstitious expressions intended to assuage the ire of an offended deity. What they do not understand is that a superstitious religion will not save the soul – only enslave it.
Jesus referred to such self-interested individuals as those who followed him for only the loaves and the fishes – what they could get out of him – but not for his sake, alone; not from love of him. God desires exclusively the worship of love, not of fear; but for most Christians it seems to take a while for them to come to that, if they ever do.
What, then, is the skandalon for this final age? that thing which will cause all but those who are totally sold-out to God, to be too scandalized, too embarrassed or ashamed to follow God, as did Jesus, at any cost to themselves?
Few there are who recognize the division of sacrifice the Father has established for His purposes. It can be recognized if one will but look with the eyes of the Spirit into the ancient, Old Testament Jewish sanctuary service, God's heavenly picture-book of the Plan of Redemption.
Most Christians today believe that the totality of that great Plan was fully consummated at the Cross. It was not. If that were so, then two very salient questions arise:
First: Why, in the Old Testament Sanctuary, do the services make a clear distinction in time and form between the Passover (portending the sacrifice of Jesus, the Lamb, on the cross), and the Day of Atonement, the final consummation in judgment of the Father's Plan? They are two very different and distinctly divine enactments.
Second: Some will ask, did not Jesus, in his dying proclamation, announce “It is finished!”? Yes, but did he intend to convey the thought that all aspects of the atonement for mankind were finished? Or was the “It” to which he was referring merely the sacrificial part of the typical sanctuary service, of which Jesus was the anti-type – the spotless Passover Lamb?
If it is so, that all redemption was completed at the Cross, why then is there a six-month gap of time between Passover, the sacrifice, and Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement? It would be well for one's understanding of this not to confuse the Sacrifice with the totality of the Atonement. God has very specific and integral purposes for each – separately and in concert.
It is true that by the agency of the Cross a magnificent way had been established for the salvation of all humanity. That was the foundational act of infinite sacrifice from a heart of infinite love. However, the full completion of man's redemption goes beyond the Cross, but in nowise diminishes it. Though the price of admission, as it were, has been paid for humanity to enter the Marriage of the Lamb, that sacrifice was a solitary and sovereign act of the Godhead. Its implementation required nothing of humanity but to murder the incarnate Son of the living God.
However, there is still required an act on the part of humanity itself, and that is the receiving of that incomprehensible expression of Divine love; the act of choosing it by faith. But so also by the Cross, is provided the empowerment of that faith and that choice.
“For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him.” Phil. 2:13, New Living Translation
What is required on man's part is represented in Jesus' parable of the Wedding Feast, where he said:
“The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son..., And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment: And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless.
“Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. For many are called, but few are chosen.” Matt. 12:2, 11-14.
Every provision has been made for mankind's entrance into eternal life with his God. Not only has the sacrifice been provided by way of the Cross, but the wedding garment itself, also referred to in Scripture as the Robe of Christ's Righteousness. That provision is all-inclusive for every contingency, even the aforementioned heart-encouragement and the divinely-empowered will for man to choose it – but choose it he must. God will not do the willing on man's behalf. Man must, by divinely-empowered will, make the conscious – and ongoing – decision to receive the blessing.
However, man is not even required by his own power to don the wedding garment; he must simply agree to have it done for him, and not resist the methods by which God chooses to implement it. The Husband of all humanity has even provided for that as well:
“Joshua the high priest was standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist [condemn] him.
“Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments [the symbol of his unrighteousness for which Satan was condemning him], and stood before the angel. And he answered and spake unto those that stood before him, saying, Take away the filthy garments from him. And unto him he said, Behold, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee, and I will clothe thee with change of raiment.
“And I said, Let them [not Joshua] set a fair mitre upon his head. So they set a fair mitre upon his head, and clothed him with garments.” Zechariah 3:1-5
Wayne Bent once described this provision in a humorously simple way, by saying that God gives you a million dollars, and then storms in, demanding back that million dollars to enter into His Son's wedding. The Lord giveth, and the Lord taketh away. He never requires anything of a soul that He has not previously provided, at His own, infinite expense.
If everything has been provided – the Sacrifice, the garment of righteousness and the invitation to the wedding – why do so many fail to (in worldly terms) RSVP that invitation in the prescribed manner? That is called the “mystery of iniquity,” and a mystery indeed it is! Every excuse is silenced in the face of that all-providing, all-consuming Love, the depths of which no finite being will ever fully comprehend.
If God is infinite, all aspects of His nature as well must be infinite; His love, His justice, His knowledge, His presence. And man, being a finite creature, can never possibly comprehend all there is to know about God; for if he could, man himself would be infinite, and himself be God. There is at least one major religion that believes that such is the ultimate destiny of redeemed humanity. The heresy in that concept is not only spiritual but mathematical: nothing finite can ever become infinite, no matter how large it becomes.
“Heaven is a ceaseless [eternal] approaching to God through Christ. The longer we are in the heaven of bliss, the more and still more of glory will be opened to us; and the more we know of God, the more intense will be our happiness.” “Both the redeemed and the unfallen beings will find in the cross of Christ their science and their song.” Ellen G. White, The Desire of Ages, p. 331, 19
With the altogether circumspect and infinite provision God has made, what could have been left out? Simply: nothing! Hence the man's above response to the inquiry by the King as to why he had no wedding garment: “... he was speechless.” He clearly had nothing to say, and knew it, since it was staggeringly clear that the King had provided everything the man needed. But he would not abide by the single and simple requirement for entrance to the wedding – putting on the provided garment, with even the “how to” and the “doing” of that requirement being a divine gift.
No provision has been omitted for the redemption of fallen humanity; no excuse will be accepted.
So, if the atonement between God and man was completed, in its totality, on that day at Calvary two-thousand-years ago, as most of Christianity believes, why then are Christians still here, held to this planet by its gravitation? and why is the earth not now lying in the ruins of its millennial desolation? Would it not be reasonable to assume that there is still more to come in the divine redemption of man?
It should be quite evident to any open-minded student of Scripture, that some other great event was to take place before the final execution of Judgment commences. That event? The second great skandalon: the Marriage of the Lamb. And if the first was designed to be the ultimate – the apotheosis of offense to its age, would not God have designed the second to be just as scandalous, just as offensive to this one? And what would be the greatest of cultural/religious felonies in this perverted, flesh-oriented day? What could God do to get the attention of humanity and make the final separation, especially between the true and false believers?
The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field: But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way. But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also. So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares? He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up? But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them. Let both grow together until the harvest [the Judgment]: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn. Matt. 13:24-30
If the crucifixion of Christ was a very real and physical execution, then how would the Marriage of the Lamb – the ultimate atonement (at-one-ment) – and its consummation appear? Would it manifest itself like the ethereal, beatifically vague and laundered imagery portrayed in historical paintings and murals? Or would it be as starkly real and offensive to this present generation as was the Cross to the religionists of Christ's day?
— WHO IS THE TRUE HUSBAND OF THE SOUL? —
First, let us further examine the nature of the Cross in the light of contemporary perceptions.
There are very many – most, in fact – who adamantly claim that, had they been present at Jesus' trial, would never have cried “Crucify him!” or reviled him at the cross, or rejected him as did the Pharisees and Sadducees. What they fail to consider is that they are making that declaration in perfect hindsight; a retrospective that was not available to those of AD 33. Indeed, as the evidence of human nature so amply illustrates, the great majority of so-called believers today, as then, would instead cast their votes for Barabbas, and to crucify God's Son.
“You say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets. Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves,that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets.” Matthew 23:30, 31
“Whom will ye that I release unto you? Barabbas, or Jesus which is called Christ?”
~Pontius Pilate, Governor of Judea in the reign of Emperor Tiberius Caesar Augustus, 42 BC to AD 37
Barabbas, in ancient Aramaic, means Son of the Father. History also reveals that his full name was Jesus Barabbas – or, Jesus, Son of the Father. He was considered by many of his followers to be the Messiah who would fulfill their nationalistic hopes of overthrowing Rome and making Israel once again a free and internationally dominant nation. Therefore, at Christ's trial, in a beautiful, parabolic symbol only God could bring about, there stood two men arraigned before Pilate, both claiming to be “Jesus, son of the Father” – both by name, one by fact.
Both were presented to the mob for them to choose between as to who should be released by Roman custom in honor of their Passover. The reality – the hidden test of it was, however, that they were actually choosing which spirit they would have rule over them, although they knew not the eternal consequences of the choice they made in that moment. This is how God ever works; He keeps the purposes of His providence veiled until each brings perfect judgment upon themselves.
As so well described in James Russell Lowell's poem, The Present Crisis, later to become the well-known hymn titled by the first line:
Once to ev'ry man and nation
Comes the moment to decide,
In the strife of truth and falsehood,
For the good or evil side;
Some great cause, God's new Messiah,
Off'ring each the bloom or blight,
And the choice goes by forever
'Twixt that darkness and that light.
~James Russell Lowell, 1845
So it is and has been in every age: In multitudinous ways, in all shapes and sizes, to every soul there comes the choice of receiving the true or the false Son of God; one of the flesh and one of the Spirit; one to fulfill the natural, selfish desires of their fallen nature; one to redeem them from it. Every choice represents either the all-consuming (consummating) sacrifice of the self to become truly the Son of the Father; and the other, the sacrifice of the soul to its own lusts, living out the apostate principles of a religion of self-involvement.
The latter creates the horror whereby the Self becomes the deity, and God becomes the servant whose only purpose for existence is to fulfill the demands of human lust and avarice; to gratify unsanctified human greed (again, think: Prosperity Gospel, “name-it-and-claim-it” etc.). The promises God has given humanity in the Scriptures for its blessing then become the means of enslaving the Deity to the will of man; to his perverted passions, rather than the soul willingly accepting the yoke of bondage to Christ, the only true freedom that exists. Anything less, becomes the most abject and degrading servitude. It is truly the mystery of iniquity that so very many choose the latter over the former.
Choose Barabbas (worldly religion) and the soul chooses the bondage of sin; choose Christ as the only indwelling power of life, and it receives the bondage of freedom. This freedom comes only via the tandem sacrifices of the Cross and the Consummation of the Marriage of the Lamb.
In every age and time, to every soul on earth, in one form or another, the option is presented: Christ or Barabbas?
And the choice goes by forever
'Twixt that darkness and that light.
Of what level or degree of reality are we speaking?
The first of the two greatest events of history was a real – a very real – enactment of the sacrificed Passover Lamb, on a very real, rough-hewn wooden cross, affixed to it by very real iron nails, whose physical, human body was pierced by a very real spear. Is it not then reasonable that the second of those two greatest of antitypical events in history would be equally as real, just as physical, just as much an act of divine humility and sacrifice as was the first?
Just as Jesus Christ was not crucified, as if portrayed in some earthly, high school passion play, on a Styrofoam cross with rubber nails and fake blood, why then would the Marriage of the Lamb and its consummation be enacted in any less real a manner? And just as the Cross of Christ was an exquisitely poignant illustration of God's love, humility and Self-sacrifice, so also would be the Consummation of the Marriage of the Lamb: very real, very humiliating – and very antitypical.
Humanity, in Eden, abandoned its true Husband and betrothed itself to His adversary, a counterfeit husband, Satan, Barabbas. The Cross and the Marriage were God's responses to human spiritual adultery – the adulteration of the Divine Marriage – to win back His Bride, saving man from an also equally real marriage to the Devil.
Mankind has played the whore in its relationship to its heavenly Husband. However, in its redemption God appeared to violate even His own law, for in Old Testament times, by Levitical statutes, it was a violation of the law for a priest to marry a whore. This is wonderfully illustrated in the book of Hosea, where God instructed him to do just that, in clear opposition to His own law.
— Ten —
A Sinful Messiah
“If the biggest sinner you know isn't you, then you don't know yourself.” Jean Leroux
In His eternal, divine, two-part Passion Play, Jesus lived out the first part of the Lamb's life, mission and sacrifice in a very real human being. He took the part of the kinsman redeemer, parabolically enacted in the Old Testament book of Ruth. Jesus, in perfect harmony with the symbol, and by his incarnation into human flesh, became our next-of-kin, thereby giving him the absolute, inarguable right to save those he now calls brethren – whom the Devil claims as his rightful possession. Being born into the birthright of humanity gave the Son of God a rightful, legal access to redeem the race. Jesus could do that only because He became one with us in his humanity.
In the Sanctuary Service, the Passover sacrifice is a lamb, an immature sheep, perfect, “without spot or blemish” but not yet fully expressed. Later he, the current antitypical reality of that symbol, returns as a mature ram to live out the fulness of a divinely-redeemed life and mission in a fallen human being (one who surely had both spot and blemish). He thereby invalidated any demonic argument that a man, not having lived a flawless earthly life, as did Jesus, cannot be lifted out of sin into the perfect life of Christ – here, and now.
The first half of this symbolic fulfillment expressed itself in the life of Jesus of Nazareth, the Lamb of God, and the second in the mature life of Michael (Wayne Bent). “Even unto old age...” say The Dead Sea Scrolls, in reference to this final era of Messiah's work. Theodor Gaster, The Dead Sea Scriptures, 15 - IX, 2-X, 12. Wayne Bent, at this writing, is in his 80th year.
Jesus was the Sacrifice, and did not live to old age. So, by God's plan, it falls to his successor, in these “last days” to play out the completion of the Atonement, and to bring those who believe in him “to full salvation.”
“And just as surely as it is appointed for all men to die and after that pass to their judgment, so it is certain that Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many and after that, to those who look for him, he will appear a second time, not this time to deal with sin, but to bring them to full salvation.” Heb. 9:28 Phillips Translation
The argument is often presented by some (invariably employed as an excuse for the occasional sin) that Jesus had an advantage over fallen humanity in that he was born into this world as the sinless Son of God with no propensity to sin. However, the symbolic and real life-course of Wayne Curtis Bent lies as proof that a fallen, sinful man – something Jesus was not – with innate tendencies toward sin, can indeed be redeemed in this life, to the unfallen, pure nature of Christ. He would then become, with many others, the First Fruits to God in this final age, of those who have been brought to the place of Enoch and Elijah. Those first fruits of God's redemption in this age, could then say, as did Jesus, “The prince of this world [Satan] cometh, and hath nothing in me.” Jn 14:30
“He [Christ] came into me,” Bent said, “so that people would have a human being just like themselves, with the same faults as they have, warning them – rather than looking on a heavenly Creature, and they wouldn't even know how salvation comes.”
“Jesus wasn't a sinner; it was given to him to forgive. But it takes a sinful messiah to bring destruction. Because a sinful Messiah – someone who has sinned – understands sinning. But, Jesus never sinned,” he continued, “he had a sinful body, but he never yielded to it. And so my prayer was, 'Father, I am worthy to bring judgment, because I have sinned.' Jesus had never been in it as far as loving the way it is. But I did, and I was born that way. Jesus wasn't, so he could forgive, but I must end it."
Only someone with the fallen human nature of Adam; only a man who had experienced his own expression of the wicked propensities conferred upon mankind by his rebellion in the Garden, could fully understand, by human comprehension, what was needed to bring judgment to the world.
Certainly God does comprehend all the issues of sin and its effects, in infinite circumspection. However, it must be shown that not only could man be redeemed by the infinite sacrifice made for him, but it must also be revealed through the finite perspective of the human soul that it is understood by men.
With heaven as with men, judgment requires the understanding of those being judged, which is why even in worldly courts of law a soul with diminished capacity to comprehend what they are being tried for is usually spared conviction. Neither does God force humanity to blindly accept His word (since most have shown they will not anyway). In the heavenly court of law, judgment provides the reasons – the cause and effect – that have resulted in the sentence passed. Humans and fallen angels alike must come to understand God's reasoning in this judicial matter, else He would not have uttered the words, “Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” Isa. 1:18
All things relevant to a soul's redemption and judgment will be made clear so that every issue is plainly understood. The lost, and even Satan himself, will eventually proclaim the justice of God's actions, and as prophecy declares, “every knee shall bow … and every tongue confess.” Phil. 2:10, 11
This is not a confession that is beat out of the conquered, but one that proceeds from a mind that fully realizes the truth and the God they have been warring against. They are brought to understand the issues, and from that understanding they will proclaim that God's ways and judgments are flawless. Just as the man at the wedding feast who refused to put on the garment provided him, they have nothing to do but agree.
Jesus, because he was born into the birthright of humanity, could legally redeem humanity. And just so, it must be one also born into that same birthright who must judge humanity. The former exercised redemption through his knowledge of the Father and of His righteousness and holiness; the latter judges through his intimate knowledge of sin and its consequences to the fallen race. For it could be argued by satanic agencies that Jesus could not justly pass sentence for the commission of spiritual crimes if he never experienced the horrors of actually committing them.
“You have to be an overcoming sinner.” Bent explained, “to actually do the right thing in eliminating the wicked world. Just destroying it isn't enough. Like the flood, it didn't change a thing.” It just delayed the inevitable. The flood demonstrated that human nature cannot be redeemed by threat or catastrophe; it takes the power and love of an omnipotent God to effect the salvation of man. It requires the heart-consent of the ones being redeemed, and that does not come by forceful constraint, but by a willing surrender to the eternal enshrinement of a love incomprehensible.
“And I can see why Jesus had nothing to say to them in his trial,” Wayne observed, “because he wasn't a sinner. I had things to say in my trial because I was.”
Wayne was qualified and chosen as the vessel from which to pour out the final judgment, because, as he states it, “I understand all the levels of sin. I was brought to see that in prison. And I thought, Father, I'm worthy to call the judgment because I have sinned. And Jesus didn't. He has never sinned. He is worthy to give us Life; I'm not worthy to give Life because I've sinned. But I am worthy to bring the end of it.”
“Messiah entered into someone who sinned all the sins – selfishness, evil thoughts, anger – all the sins that men can commit, I have, through my life – and overcome. “
Some Christians – in fact, likely most – will make the spurious claim that the mission of Wayne Bent, as the Sinful Messiah to commence the judgment diminishes the role of Jesus, somehow making his Messiahship of less importance. Such thinking ignores the fact that it actually enhances the concept, by its contrast with Christ's purity and holiness.
“You know,” Bent continued, “David Koresh called himself a 'sinful Messiah,' and look what happened to his world – he burned it up. So when this world is destroyed, a sinful Messiah must do it, because he understands what's happening – one who has overcome sin, but, still, he was a sinner. And I thought, That's perfect! Satan cannot be given the right to take over the world, because I overcame his world – I was in it, and I overcame it.
“A sinful Messiah has to be the one that judges himself – his world. One who hasn't sinned, cannot do that. I know what it is to look back at my corruption. The reason we're here and having to witness it with our eyes is because we helped make it.” Humanity has made the world as it is, in its fallen, demented state, and humanity must be used to bring judgment to it.
As recorded in Genesis, mankind was told by God to “have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.” Gen. 1:28 In this, and other places, God made it clear that he had given dominion over the earth to man and that he was to exercise it under the sovereign will of God. There is no place in Scripture that indicates that dominion was ever rescinded by God. While its true that it was surrendered to Satan at the Fall, that was never ratified in heaven, and Jesus' victory on the Cross reaffirmed humanity's stewardship of the earth. Although few believe it, it is still the sons of God who possess the rightful claim to that dominion. That is why the only begotten and eternal Son of God had to become human – had to be born into the birthright of this planet – in order to exercise his legal dominion over it and to redeem us.
And thou, O tower of the flock, the strong hold of the daughter of Zion, unto thee shall it come, even the first dominion; the kingdom shall come to the daughter of Jerusalem. Mic 4:8
In the same protocol initiated by God, it must also be man, again born into the birthright, that brings judgment by agreement with God.
If one has doubts about humanity's dominion over the earth, it can be reasoned that if God had complete dominion, there would be no evil on earth; and if Satan possesses it, humanity would all be dead. That leaves only one agency that can logically be understood as having that dominion. And it is, of course, a stewardship of rule that is subject to the will of the Father.
A significant component of the image of God restored to the soul of man is his acceptance of the “first dominion.” In his book, Jesus, The Gates of Hell Shall Not Prevail Against Him, Wayne Bent wrote, "'For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.' (Rom. 8:29) Jesus was the firstborn among many. The significance of that statement is awesome when meditated upon. Jesus was the first of many. He was number one. The other believers are numbers two and three and on and on. We are partakers of the same nature Jesus partook of – the divine nature. We are the sons of God.” Wayne C. Bent, Jesus, The Gates of Hell Shall Not Prevail Against Him, Chapter Four, Where Is The Son? (emphasis supplied)
In ancient Hebrew, the term “first” – as in first born or first fruits – is not given as a sequence or chronology, but as a position of importance or rank. King David was referred to as the first born of Israel, yet he was not the first born of his parents in order of birth; he had elder brothers. His title of first born was an expression of rank, much as the wife of an American president is referred to as the First Lady. She is not the oldest nor the progenitor of all other ladies, that title accrues to her by simply being the wife of the president.
“Jesus changed the whole religion of the world,” Bent explained. “I didn't do that. But because I was a sinner I was able to agree with God about judgment – that it needed to come. Jesus' appearing had so much feeling and forgiveness in it. Mine had in it exposing the evil."
“Jesus had a much greater work than I had. My work was simply to agree with God to turn the world off because I had experience of what it was like to be delivered from sin. Jesus didn't, he was born converted, but he still had the natural human flesh. But he required no deliverance from sinning.”
People could argue that Jesus couldn't be a totally empathetic redeemer since he had never known what it was like to be a sinner. But Wayne surely had. So, the same Spirit of the Son of God that was expressed in the life of Jesus as the Savior of mankind in the dispensation of Grace, entered Wayne Bent, anointing him with the dispensation of Judgment – because he was qualified.
“For instance, I could tell people to stop smoking because I had been a smoker.” This, of course, does not imply that he necessarily had to commit every known sin to qualify for his anointing. He simply had, and expressed, the same fallen nature of humanity that has led to the commission of every known sin.
Adolf Hitler is probably the most universally excoriated personage in history, and virtually none of those frequently invoking him as an example of all that is evil in the world, realize that they have the same nature and potential for wickedness as Der Führer. They would, given the identical circumstances, likely commit the same atrocities, and feel quite as justified, as did Hitler, in committing them.
It is the human condition; the fallen, godless nature that supplies the propensity to all wickedness. And that same nature is always on the lookout for someone else to point the finger at for acting on those very same propensities they themselves also possess, but just haven't gotten around to acting on them.
In their self-justification, these persons refer to many acts of others as “inhuman.” This seems to provide them with some sort of plausible deniability; a comfortable separation between who they are and the evil person committing the inhuman atrocities. However, in fact, those acts they label as inhuman are precisely the opposite; they are quintessentially human in every respect.
It is not until a soul reconciles himself to the fact that he is the worst person ever to draw breath, that redemption takes place.
— Eleven —
From Sin, or In Sin?
It is the common, almost universal response from Pagan Christianity that it is impossible to live without sinning on occasion. As proof, they quote from Scripture, Paul's statement that “all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” Romans 3:23 They say this as if to bolster Satan's original argument that even God cannot deliver a soul from sin in this life. He must, by that logic, wait till the end of one's tenure on this planet, then pop forth some magic that He couldn't pull off on earth.
That same demonic argument also claims that by sinning, mankind has become the rightful prey and possession of Satan, who asserts humanity as his bride – perpetual spousal abuse notwithstanding. But Paul's statement does not claim a life without sin, but a life that has been redeemed from the power of sin; that “sin will not have dominion over” the sinner. See Romans 6:14
Any time a soul sins, at that moment sin has dominion over that person. So, by extension, if Scripture says that sin has no dominion over the Christian, but a professed Christian says it does, which testimony do we believe – Scripture's plain word, or the professed Christian's? Is the weight of one's experience to be given precedence and ultimate credibility over the Word of the living God, when the two are opposed to one another? Sadly, nearly all Christians will opt to believe their experience as the primary evidence of truth. They then proceed to twist (wrest) the Scriptures to agree with their experience, rather than to call their experience the lie that it is, and the Word of God the inviolable truth.
In Wayne Bent's life, as well as in countless, but as yet unknown, lives in this day, Christ is expressed without the flaw of committing known sin. They have become living parables; an irrepressible image of God's redemptive power; an irrefutable argument that cannot be disaffirmed or negated. It is the power of God unto salvation. But these souls do not know they have been perfectly redeemed from the power of sin. As Job said, “Though I were perfect, yet would I not know my soul: I would despise my life.” Job 9:21
For centuries, one of the most oft sung Christian hymns, Rock of Ages, has contained that very truth so many professed followers of Christ deny in this day, if not in word, in deed.
Let the water and the blood,
From Thy riven side which flowed,
Be of sin the double cure,
Cleanse me from its guilt and power.
If one is not delivered from the power of sin, he is not delivered from its guilt – and neither, therefore, from its penalty.
“The Lord Jesus came to our world, not to reveal what a God could do, but what a man could do, through faith in God's power.”
“Jesus revealed no qualities, and exercised no powers, that men may not have through faith in Him. His perfect humanity is that which all His followers may possess, if they will be in subjection to God as He was.” Ellen G. White, Selected Messages, p. 140, The Desire of Ages, p. 664
“He met man as man, and testified by His connection with God that divine power was not given to Him in a different way to what it will be given to us.” White, 7BC 925
However, there is likely no more unpopular truth of God than this. One who preaches it, proclaims it – and especially, lives it – will find a cross astride his path, for the world has far less tolerance for truth now than at any time in its history.
“The culmination of all this,” Wayne Bent said, “is that after I was baptized, I was used for 33-years, as Jesus was used for 33-years, to prove the system for what it was; to prove the world for what it was; to bring the truth to the world.
“The world,” he observed, “crucified Jesus and imprisoned me. He was killed in the midst of the week, and so he was taken away. I stopped interceding in the midst of the week, when I was taken away.”
“So, what is the future?” Bent asks, rhetorically. “We are in the process, at this very moment, of national ruin. It will not be reversed; it will only increase until the final day.
“'Fallen, fallen is Babylon, that great city.' And,” he concluded, “it is.”
In this writing we have conflated the ignominy and scandalon of the Cross with a most powerful spiritual event of this final age. That seemingly disgraceful component would bring with it the condemnation of the apostate Christian world, and modern culture and society in general. As the unspeakable punishment of crucifixion was considered the ultimate humiliation and opprobrium that could be conferred upon a human being in the Roman era, so also would the accusation by the Christian community and the world do with The Consummation of the Marriage of the Lamb.
The Consummation of the Marriage of the Lamb was as essential to the plan of salvation as was Christ's death on the cross, for it prefigures the absolute subsuming, the total consumption of the heart and soul of man back into God, where it originated and where it has always belonged.
That is the etymology of “consummation” – to consume – and its object is humanity; to re-consummate, as it were, the fallen race to Himself. But it is a consuming that does not annihilate the soul's individuality – only the components that, if left unaddressed, would destroy the soul's communion with its Creator, resulting in its total dissolution. Much like an electric light that seeks its perfect individuality by disconnecting itself from its power source, the human soul, severed from its heavenly Husband would eventually cease to exist.
Satan's deadly ontology, his philosophy of separation from God and his hatred of holy things writ large into the soul of humanity, is that which impels a child to break his own toy rather than allow another to possess it; a pride that would tear down the sun, plunging itself into darkness, simply to deny its light to those it hates. It is the fatal arrogance of ego so well expressed by Milton in Paradise Lost that proclaims t'is “better to rule in hell than serve in heaven.”
In this final act of re-creation by its Creator, God restores mankind to his Edenic state of perfect harmony with Him. The totality of God's sacrifice, in both the Cross and the Marriage will be shown to be as perfect in its results, as infinite in its extent as is the One that formulated it – an infinity that will continuously and forever reveal itself in greater and more wonderful revelations of who God is and what He sacrificed to redeem His wayward children to Himself.
“The salvation of man is accomplished at an infinite expense to heaven; the sacrifice made is equal to the broadest demands of the broken law of God.” Ellen G. White, The Great Controversy, p.489
During his ministry, prior to his crucifixion, Jesus once intentionally created a scandalon in order to bring about the willing separation of those who were not sincere about belonging (consummating) only to God. Christ knew that when he was sacrificed by the extreme offensiveness of that Pagan instrument of torture, that it would present a danger to his true disciples resulting from the disaffection of those who were Christ's by profession only. Jesus foresaw that when others were repulsed by his crucifixion and would desert him, that there would exist a very real possibility that his faithful disciples could be drawn away by their apostasy. Desiring to shield them from this temptation, he laid down the most powerfully illustrative principles of what it means to truly follow him:
“Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me. This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever.” John 6:53-58
The Jewish rabbis were quite familiar with such texts as Jeremiah 15:16, Thy words were found, and I did eat them and Deuteronomy 8:3 Man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the Lord, thus equating the Word of God with an analog of physical nourishment. Jesus even included in that last sentence a clarification that, had they been willing to receive it, would have clearly explained the spiritual nature of his words. But they did not want a spiritual kingdom because they knew it would not include their exaltation to earthly preeminence over all other nations, especially Rome.
Those Jews to whom Jesus was speaking, intentionally refused to see anything but the most literal meaning in his words. They implied that he was in some perverted way advocating cannibalism. Self-serving, however, dictates and defines its own behavior in order to preserve itself, for they well knew that he was speaking of spiritual truths; that the Kingdom he was offering had nothing whatever to do with the kingdom they desired. They then feigned an interpretation of Jesus' words that was overtly and intellectually dishonest. But, vacuous and thinly veiled as was their reasoning, it gave them the excuse they were looking for to forsake Jesus.
The cost to themselves, and indeed the same cost to every generation since – that of their cherished ambitions – was too great of a payment for a kingdom they could not apprehend with their senses; one that did not provide them with the tangible assets of an earthly kingdom to which their hearts were truly drawn. They were clearly aware that it would require the destruction of their personal empire of dirt. Even his faithful disciples wondered if he had gone too far in provoking a controversy so obviously offensive to the Jewish leaders.
However, as goes the biblical principle of separating the wheat from the tares in the time of reaping, they must grow together for a season, lest the good be uprooted with the bad. But there comes the moment when, at each harvest judgment, that separation must come. Jesus was fully aware that Judas would betray him; however, because the Disciples had such a high regard for the man, Jesus allowed Judas the necessary time to reveal his true character, and by the betrayer's own hand, separate himself from Christ.
In the peculiar twist of God's merciful logic, He allows those being judged to establish their own condemnation – to judge themselves, as it were. Not a forced judgment or a constraint of the will, but entirely voluntary and self-pronounced, though not perceived as such until their own words eventually condemned them.
“Many of the words and acts of Jesus appear mysterious to finite minds, but every word and act had its definite purpose in the work for our redemption; each was calculated to produce its own result. If we were capable of understanding His purposes, all would appear important, complete, and in harmony with His mission.
“While we cannot now comprehend the works and ways of God, we can discern His great love, which underlies all His dealings with men. He who lives near to Jesus will understand much of the mystery of godliness. He will recognize the mercy that administers reproof, that tests the character, and brings to light the purpose of the heart.
“When Jesus presented the testing truth that caused so many of His disciples to turn back, He knew what would be the result of His words; but He had a purpose of mercy to fulfill. He foresaw that in the hour of temptation every one of His beloved disciples would be severely tested. His agony in Gethsemane, His betrayal and crucifixion, would be to them a most trying ordeal. Had no previous test been given, many who were actuated by merely selfish motives would have been connected with them. When their Lord was condemned in the judgment hall; when the multitude who had hailed Him as their king hissed at Him and reviled Him; when the jeering crowd cried, 'Crucify Him!'—when their worldly ambitions were disappointed, these self-seeking ones would, by renouncing their allegiance to Jesus, have brought upon the disciples a bitter, heart-burdening sorrow, in addition to their grief and disappointment in the ruin of their fondest hopes. In that hour of darkness, the example of those who turned from Him might have carried others with them. But Jesus brought about this crisis while by His personal presence He could still strengthen the faith of His true followers.” E.G. White, The Desire of Ages, p.394
The scandalon of Wayne Bent would have very similar results: those of separating people who had a mere profession of allegiance to present Truth from those who truly desired it. Only those would remain who could discern the words of the Spirit and embrace the deep spiritual truths embodied in the fulfillment of Isaiah 4:1 – that seven women would take hold of one man, demanding of him a spiritual marriage – profoundly symbolic of the Marriage of God to His Church. It is also most profoundly symbolic of the penetrating, powerfully intimate relationship the Father desires with His multi-membered Bride – every soul that desires to be brought to full salvation in the eternal, fiery intimacy of God.
Such is why the act of sexual communion, the most intimate possible between husband and wife, was created to illustrate in even the remote, somewhat imperfect way it does, the consummation of two souls into one, prefiguring a consummation into the very heart of God. This communion was so absolutely penetrating that God, Himself, even pronounced it so in Eden:
“For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother, and be joined to his wife; and they shall become one flesh.” Gen. 2:24
Is it then any mystery why the archenemy of God and humanity has taken such extreme measures to make the symbolic act of sexual communion into the salacious, pornographic thing it has become? to abuse and defile the symbol so absolutely that any recognition of the spiritual truth it represents becomes virtually indistinguishable from the filth of human erotica? It has been twisted, in human perception, into something that the perverted souls of such men as think they are holy would reject, even when initiated at the command of God. It represents the very essence of the life Lucifer possessed in heaven, and forfeited by his rebellion.
By this divine illustration can be seen the enactment of divine reproduction. It is by this totally invasive, over-mastering act, consummated only by the willing consent of the soul (God is not a rapist, He never forces Himself upon a soul), that He reproduces Himself in humanity; that the Holy Spirit imparts to the soul the perfect image of Christ the Son. That is what the symbol of human sexual reproduction is meant to convey; not the prurient obscenity into which satanic agencies have perverted it. The perversion of sexuality in this holy symbol of marital union is the root cause of the extreme offensiveness it has to the self-righteous.
“Others, who thought so wonderfully of their pious state and righteous standing,” Bent remarked, “were offended at the Christ who consummated a marriage in a most distasteful way.” They could not reason that He had consummated His Son's sacrifice on the cross in an equally scandalous and humanly scurrilous manner.
“These souls were willing to accept a spiritual, invisible consummation – but not a real one” Bent said. A phony Passion Play centuries removed, which would give them a comfortable separation in time and geography, was far more acceptable to men than is the reality – the in-your-face invasiveness – of who God really is.
Why such demonic energy focused on so thoroughly destroying the ultimate illustration of God's communion with His people? Hint: The answer lies in the question. The ubiquitous parable of sexual reproduction so completely encompasses the entire Plan of Redemption, that it must, by satanic reasoning and terror of the clear revelation contained in it, be brought so low in its moral misrepresentation as to make it unacceptable to the human mind as representing anything holy. It must be reduced to only a perversion – an animalistic appetite – heinously and largely overindulged.
Men may believe in or even worship the Virgin Mary while they are simultaneously repulsed at the very thought of God employing, in a contemporary application, the spiritual/sexual symbolism of the reproduction of Himself in humanity. It seems that as long as there is a broad and comfortable gap, historically, between then and now, the outrageous things God did in times past become acceptable. But let Him get too close to our present-day with those disturbing expressions of Himself, and humanity goes insanely ballistic.
Logic must ask: Do they stupidly believe that it was the Devil that invented latter-day sexual procreation? The incoherence of modern Christian thinking must be incomprehensible to angels observing what has become of humanity. After all, they remember a time when mankind appeared to have more than two viable brain cells to rub together.
One must wonder exactly what professed Christians think the symbol represents of God impregnating a human female to bear His incarnate Son. Is there some mythical shelf-life, some unspoken time frame as to how long the Creator is permitted to apply His analogies of redemption? Does mankind inform God that in this age where sex has become thought of as dirty and profane, He, its creator, is no longer permitted its use to illustrate His love for us? Is it not, after all, the perpetual endeavor of demonic forces to make a profanity of holy things – especially those that are most directly applicable to the destruction of his Luciferian kingdom?
So, it follows naturally that the symbol of the virgin birth has as well been so laundered and scoured over the centuries as to make it sterile and totally impotent to modern degenerate thinking. It has become a complete incongruity with the truth that salvation comes to the soul in no other way than that symbolized by the parthenogenesis of God's Son – that is, the impregnating of all humanity who are willing to bear the prevailing cultural shame of it, for the ultimate glory of it; those willing to bear – give birth to, within them – the Son of the living God.
In every age there comes a testing truth.
Since the cross is no longer the scandal it was 21-centuries ago, by extension there must be another equally shocking and culturally abhorrent scandalon in this present age. It must be one that represents and symbolizes the extremity of God's efforts to save His children; His absolute self-sacrifice for the redemption of His creation, and the judgment of mankind. This is where comes the fulfillment of Isaiah 4:1, 2 – In that day seven women shall take hold of one man, saying, We will eat our own bread, and wear our own apparel: only let us be called by thy name, to take away our reproach. In that day shall the branch of the Lord be beautiful and glorious...
The phrase “in that day” refers to the end of time, the Judgment. So how could the demand of those seven, symbolic women, pleading to be taken by one man, possibly be connected with the last part of that scripture verse – “In that day shall the branch of the Lord be beautiful and glorious...”? What possible connection could such a seemingly bizarre scenario have to do with making God's branch beautiful and glorious?
Does the prophecy mean that in the end of days, in which we are now living, there will be a population ratio of 1:7, men to women? Or that every man shall have seven wives? or some other equally silly, inane interpretation? The perverted imagination of humanity in its unceasing attempts to interpret prophecy in a manner pleasing to its own ego, would certainly (or conveniently) have interpreted it thusly. As illustrated by the Jew's crucifixion of Jesus, such misinterpretations have always resulted in some form of greater or lesser tragedy.
In this day, seven individual women, each separately, both in time and circumstance, and with no intercommunication between them, approached Michael (Wayne Bent) to request a God-inspired, spiritual, physical and literal consummation; a Consummation, in both type and antitype, of the Marriage of the Lamb.
They each asserted that God had, in such a manner as to admit no doubt of its Divine origin, driven them to request this of him. This was to be the contemporary expression to Michael (Wayne Bent) of the crucifixion – his own personally excruciating act of perfect obedience to the instruction of God to his soul. For such a strange act was so absolutely contrary to his moral and religious perceptions as to seem impossible for him to obey. He had, after all, been instrumental in the disfellowship of others from the church body for what appeared on the surface to be precisely the same act God was now demanding of him. Most certainly, he knew that a charge of adultery! would be one of many accusations hurled against him from innumerable points of the compass. He would be “numbered with the transgressors.” (see Isaiah 53:12 and Mark 15:28)
To Bent's human sight and imagination, such obedience to God's command would destroy the very remnant church the Father had directed him to found. And even more consequentially – infinitely more so, to his thinking – would be the incalculable and seemingly irreparable damage to the only thing that truly mattered to him: The Holy name of his God.
How could such things be!? Did Bent truly understand, correctly, the command he had been given? How could he obey a directive that would so obviously bring down upon him and his Father the wrath of the entirety of organized religion and society? He had spent most of his life with the purpose of glorifying and uplifting the name and reputation of God by exhuming His essential truths from the dustbin of contemporary Christian dogma. Now he was commanded to perform a “strange act” – indeed, several strange acts – that would seem likely to obliterate his life's work and bring yet even greater disregard and dishonor to God than already existed in this age! The moral shock to his religious mind was inestimable – so much so that he at first refused the command.
It is not unusual, indeed rather common, for those whom God has called to a great work, to have fall upon them, as with Abram, the “horror of great darkness.” (See Gen. 15:12) It is the horror of God performing a work that makes no sense to human reasoning; that is utterly counterintuitive and incomprehensible to the natural man. In such times, one must know two things: first, that it is indeed God leading them, and second, that Divine enlightenment as to the meaning of His commands will come, when and if needed. Though Bent had already learned the lesson that man is to follow God's commands with no consideration as to the consequences, to his mind, in this instance, it seemed to be beyond reason. However, he reconciled himself to the eternal fact that the responsibility for the results of obedience were in the hand of God alone. He obeyed.
Without the essential component of being intimately familiar with that still, small Voice, one can only surmise the will of God. But such surmisings, untethered to the unction of the Holy Spirit, are those which inevitably result in such as the despotism of ISIS, the Salem Witch Trials and the massacres by the Roman Catholic Church of hundreds of thousands of martyrs for dissenting from the man-made dogma of her apostate religion.
History is replete with examples of unspeakable cruelty perpetrated against God's true followers, exercised by those falsely believing they are led of God. To these highly religious, but spiritually destitute men, atrocities become a sacrament, and evil a justified means to a holy end.
To current, 21st-century society, in this age of the extreme perversion of sexual misconduct, as well as the general disregard and even disdain for the God-ordained institution of marriage, such an act of seeming sexual indiscretion by a minister would be of little note, indeed, somewhat commonplace. Many would even applaud a man who had seven lovers at once, having intimate relations with all of them. Except, that is, if that man is a professed minister of the Gospel of Christ, and “self-proclaimed” Messiah. To this they vehemently objected, not realizing that they would be judged by their own objections.
Their accusations against Wayne Bent clearly reveal the fact that they are quite aware of the immorality involved in their own adulterous lives, but also quite unaware they were projecting their own immorality upon another.
Who knowing the judgment of God … thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things.
And thinkest thou this, O man, that judgest them which do such things, and doest the same, that thou shalt escape the judgment of God? Rom. 1:32, 2:1-3
Thus they judge themselves in that they demonstrate their knowledge of a God-given moral standard that in their own lives, by word and deed, they absolutely repudiate. Again, as in times past, God establishes a scenario whereby man judges himself. This process would at times appear quite humorous were the results not so tragic; for tragic is indeed what truly describes the loss of a soul.
“One soul is of such value that, in comparison with it, worlds sink into insignificance.” Ellen G. White, The Desire of Ages, p. 577
The tendency for men to displace onto others their own immorality clearly reveals the hypocrisy of the general public, because, as mentioned, they are obviously aware of the moral strictures, but as pertaining to themselves they simply choose to ignore them when it comes to satisfying their own carnal lusts. They then justify their behavior with the proclamation “I'm only human.” So common, however, are such acts of immorality by ordained ministers, that they have become a commonplace joke amongst those who take joy at their public fall from grace.
Outrage, extrinsic blame and finger-pointing quickly follow because there is an inner sense from God that He requires something of themselves, and they believe they can exorcise their own demons of guilt by displacing it on a fallen minister. Really! goes the rationale, if a spiritual leader does such things, should not they, themselves, be held faultless for doing the same? God, however, does not see matters that way. If one knows truth, they are responsible for living it, whatever the example set by another, be it minister or homeless drug addict.
The claims made by Jesus in his day, that resulted in his being sacrificed to the Romans by his own people – his own church family – were not at all unusual. Every claim he made had at some time also been made by false professors or bogus messiahs who received no retribution for their lies. So why then was Jesus crucified for making the same proclamations as many other of his countrymen in his time, and also historically? It was only, and uniquely, because they sensed that Jesus was actually speaking truth – and living it; and that such truth, if accepted, would destroy every earthly ambition they cherished. They did not want God, they only wanted His stuff.
So also would the current, symbolic fulfillment of the Consummation of the Marriage of the Lamb do for the religions of this day. It would bring home the realization that their religious ideals were not of God, but of their own flesh; that God has very little to do with the beliefs fostered in their congregations by their “self-proclaimed” ministers; that this God whom they have professed to follow is much larger, much more invasive, much more mysterious than they could ever have imagined – or desired.
Just as the Jews were misled in Christ's time to believe that Messiah would come to throw off the Roman yoke of bondage and give them the riches of the Empire, so also do Christians today believe, in their misconceptions of prophecy, that the second coming of Christ would do likewise for this present generation. They see the event, erroneously, as delivering them from this world and its trials, hardships and heartaches, transporting them to a heaven of bliss where they will experience luxury, free food, space travel and a marvelous petting zoo.
Not even remotely! They fail to understand that it is precisely those trials, hardships and heartaches that fit them to be redeemed citizens of the heavenly Kingdom.
The second coming of Messiah actually brings trials, sacrifices, hardships and heartaches; it brings with it the Refiner's fire from which nothing emerges but the perfect image of Christ. And if, as is the tragic case with the majority of professed believers, that image of the living God no longer resides in the soul, nothing at all emerges from the fire – not even air pollution.
Life at the second coming, as the aforementioned hymn, Once to Every Man and Nation, expresses so lyrically, is Toiling up new Calvaries ever, with the cross that turns not back.
“Woe unto you that desire the day of the Lord! to what end is it for you? the day of the Lord is darkness, and not light. As if a man did flee from a lion, and a bear met him; or went into the house, and leaned his hand on the wall, and a serpent bit him. Shall not the day of the Lord be darkness, and not light? even very dark, and no brightness in it?” Amos 5:18-20
What is the genuine “coming” of Christ to this world? What does it look like and how is it recognized?
“...he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to be admired [wondered and marveled at] in all them that believe (because our testimony among you was believed) in that day.” 2Thes. 1:10
Wayne explained that Messiah's “mission was to bring the truth that the second coming was Christ in you and the judgment that proceeds from that. He does not want to present himself to people as someone on a pedestal seeing him as making claims about himself, beyond his anointing, because they will then see that as an excuse that they can be comfortable with a lower standard.”
“In this age, it is God's purpose,” Wayne expanded, to “reveal him as a sinner, like anyone else, who was just chosen as the first fruits. He entered into this skinny, old man, 60 years old at the time, that no one would normally believe that about, and appeared. He appeared in a donkey.” (See Num. 22:21-39)
An oft quoted scripture, intended to refute this manifestation of the second coming of Christ as expressed in Wayne Bent, is found in Acts 1:11. “Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.”
In first consideration of that verse, it must be noted that the two words “this same” in the original Greek is the single word houtos. Compounded from two other words, it is more often used in its plural expression of both masculine and feminine. The plural is important, for it implies that “this same Jesus” is to come in a plural manner; both male and female, with multiple expressions in humanity.
It also comes from a Greek root which means a baffling wind – something that surely has been seen as such, considering the public bafflement that has accompanied Bent's latter ministry.
The second part of the verse to be considered is the direction in which the coming is denoted: “...shall come in like manner as he have seen him go into heaven.” When Jesus ascended to heaven he – well – ascended. So the extrapolation from the verse that claims he would return in “like manner” would indicate that in the expression of his second coming, he would again rise up from the earth – not fall out of the sky like some heavenly UFO with hair. And that is precisely what the true second coming has been like; Christ has shown his return in his people, as mentioned in the above verse from Thessalonians, and they have risen up from the earth, as did Jesus when he was born and entered his ministry. And their ascension to heaven will be like his as well.
The coming of Christ for which the Christian world so vociferously claims such a strong desire, did not manifest as they believed it would. Their misunderstanding of the text that “every eye shall see him” at his second coming, they have misconstrued to be a mass of celestial photons emanating from a single, isotropic source in the heavens. The reality of it is that he is revealed, spiritually, to the eye of the innermost being – the heart and soul – and that his physical coming is not in any manner, secret. It is very public, not hidden, and quite visible. Two National Geographic documentaries, disseminated world-wide, multiple times, have vividly displayed that fact. But in their unsanctified imaginations, they have created the facile, shallow images seen in so many illustrations of the event, of clean, white, upturned faces (with a token interspersing of people of color), ready to be beamed up (sans Scotty) to the heaven of their own imaginary miscreation. They appear to have completely forgotten how consistently God has disappointed their predictions as to the manner in which He would render the expression of His own prophecies.
For some reason they believe that they can pass the tests of history in hindsight, not realizing that every age brings with it its own peculiar, hidden testing truth – its own scandalon. So one cannot, for instance, make the claim that they would never betray Christ as did Judas. They miss the fact that were they in the exact same circumstances, their humanity would do precisely as did Christ's betrayer. Just as the Pharisees pronounced judgment upon themselves when responding to Jesus' parable of the landowner (see Luke 20:9-16), and immediately afterward realizing the parable was about and against them, crying “God forbid,” so also will men fail to recognize their own judging of themselves until after they validate it by their own words.
Truth is not a Jack-in-the-Box that, once released, can be stuffed back into its container. When it is out, it is out – forever. Once known, it can never afterward be unknown.
So perverted has human reasoning become, that were this not the last generation of earth, and were time to continue to the extent that the Consummation of the Marriage of the Lamb becomes as accepted as is the crucifixion in this day, we might well see equally tiny, bejeweled images of a bed placed along side of, or even replacing, the Cross – that universally misunderstood icon of antiquity – and with equal disregard for the fullness of the meaning and sacrifice it represents.
Tests will come to each, individually, that reveal their true heart. Their repudiation or betrayal of Christ will be expressed by them in a manner they will not recognize until it is too late. So it has always been, and so it shall be.
— Twelve —
So – What Precisely Is “Sex”?
“Adam knew his wife … and she bare a son.” Gen. 4:25
In our Western, Hellenistic culture, to know something is simply to have an intellectual concept of it – book learning, as it were. In the Eastern cultures, however, as in the Hebrew language of Scripture, one does not really know something, or fully understand it, until they have experienced it in a far more profound way than just simply the textual understanding of it; a deeper, more exquisite and greater intimacy than a mere head knowledge.
The most well-known mathematical expression in physics is Einstein's equation E=MC2 which denotes the latent energy contained in all physical matter. However, it exists as only a tiny collection of dry, theoretical figures on a page. That is – until one witnesses, in the detonation of a nuclear bomb, its incomprehensible reality. Then only can its true nature be understood – known; that the total destruction of the Japanese city of Hiroshima was accomplished in about nine seconds by the conversion of only a half gram of matter into energy. That minuscule quantity uranium that took the lives of more than 75,000 souls in an instant, was approximately the weight of one-sixth of an American penny.
That is the difference between knowing in the generally accepted sense, as opposed to the biblical sense.
For a man then to know his wife in the scriptural understanding of it, is representative of the deepest, most profound manner in which two humans can experience one another – a “knowing” that infinitely transcends any human linguistic definition of the term intimacy. So it is with God in His desire for us to know Him in the deepest sense that is possible for the finite to know the Infinite.
In this age of extreme moral declension the word “sex” has been culturally and illegitimately transubstantiated into a lexical bastard child of what its definition actually means. The word is a noun, but it has assumed by usage such a social trigger factor in our present culture, that it is now most commonly, and incorrectly, used as a verb. It has been metamorphosed from something one is into something one does. It has become, not a description of the difference between male and female, but rather a word describing what one does to someone else – an act perpetrated on or against another.
Pornography, homosexuality, transgenderism and every other perversion of that holy union proceeds only from the pervasive human sickness conferred upon mankind at its fall in Eden. It is a moral sickness that, like nearly all of those that have infected humanity, and modern Christianity as well, results from a human desire for one to conduct their lives only by the stimulation of their nerve endings rather than by truth. Those who choose to live by truth, do so even when those nerve endings tell them it hurts.
As the result of such moral redefinitions, America and the rest of the world have abandoned the truths that God has been laying down for over 6,000-years. They now embrace, with all heart, the fables, stories and “smooth sayings” that their ministers, priests and so-called spiritual leaders have been spewing forth from apostate pulpits. Because of that we are now witnessing what Judgment Day really looks like. We are witnessing, first hand, a spiritual nuclear bomb and its resultant pandemic of moral decay from mankind's own devising. It is not a pandemic of corona virus, but one of insanity and willful stupidity, for which there is no vaccine, and from which there is no recovery.
Largely because of the American-style diet (which started a slow-motion world pandemic of obesity), and the mind-numbing products of the tech industry and its hard focus on devices with interactive screens, whether it be smart phones or (and especially), video games, humanity is rapidly DEvolving.
To further illustrate this reversal that is clearly antagonistic to the fanciful paradigm of human evolution, a 2017 Microsoft study found the average American has an attention span of just 8-seconds. A goldfish has an attention span of 9-seconds. Clearly the proponents of the mindless phantom of evolution were standing on their heads when they formulated it, getting matters quite upside-down and backwards.
The only salvation from this “final fire” of intellectual and spiritual decay is to leave – in spirit first, and eventually, in physical reality. But that “leaving” requires that the Holy Spirit of God is in absolute, total possession of the soul. And that possession will never be accomplished but by the total surrender of the will – willingly. It is an exchange where one loses everything, but gains the whole of God in the bargain. It is not a foolish bargain to exchange something one cannot keep to acquire something one cannot lose.
It has been given to this final generation, as to none but two other individuals in history, the privilege of translating to heaven without passing under the power of physical death. Until this day, only Enoch and Elijah have left the earth in that manner. To effect this for the present generation, the soul must be taken through the entire inventory of its character, top to bottom, nothing left unexposed and undealt-with. This is critical to prepare them for the direct, unfiltered fellowship with God Himself and other holy, unfallen beings.
The fact that translation without death has not happened before, except for the two mentioned, should be to sentient beings an indication of the extreme depths of the iniquity and fallen nature of humanity. Because of having been born into the pervasive corruption of the human condition, and living out their entire lives in it, such corruption has seemed so absolutely natural to the race of man that it has very little comprehension indeed of the extreme and terrible wickedness with which sin has polluted the human soul. It just seems so normal.
"Familiarity with sin will inevitably cause it to appear less repulsive.” ~Ellen G. White, The Great Controversy, p.510
“His [Christ's] suffering was from a sense of the malignity of sin, a knowledge that through familiarity with evil, man had become blinded to its enormity. Christ saw how deep is the hold of sin upon the human heart, how few would be willing to break from its power.” EGW - The Desire of Ages, p.752
The all-pervasive nature of sin in humanity is the true nature of psychopathy. Psychologists have a tidy definition of what psychopathy is, without realizing that they, themselves, are psychopaths. In fact every human born to this planet is, to a greater or lesser degree, psychopathic. It's just that those with its lesser expression can look at the ones who exhibit the greater markers of the disorder as the real psychopaths. It's simply a matter of degree – a matter of relativity. The definition of “normal” is distinctly relative to the circumstances, politics and the ones defining it. But human psychopathy is so ubiquitous as to appear normal to everyone – except for the extreme examples.
“If one is born in a garbage dump” Bent once wrote, “they are so accustomed to it that they do not notice when a little more garbage is added.” Garbage seems as natural to that soul as does the smell of the polluted atmosphere it must breathe. It is not until such a person acquires some comprehension of the beauty and purity of, for instance, a mountain forest, with its clear air and undefiled streams of water, that the landfill they thought so natural, and embraced as home, begins to be dimly recognized for the odious, ghastly thing that it is.
“For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known." 1 Corinthians 13:12.
In our allegory of the human soul, the garbage dump dwellers have only seen the real things of nature as in a faded, water-stained photograph in a discarded book encountered amongst the trash with which they are daily surrounded. It contains only a vague description on its wrinkled, soiled pages that presents but the remotest understanding of what it must be like to actually be there. Or as C. S. Lewis once wrote, they are “like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea.”
But a spark has been ignited in that soul to whom, though dimly, has been given a vision of what God desires for them, and if they would but follow the light of it, they would trace it into the brilliance of the thing itself.
“Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him." 1Cor. 2:9
They are beyond the capacity of human imagination to envision.
Connecting the allegory of a landfill and a scene of wilderness beauty, to what God has prepared for His children, it can perhaps be somewhat, though very dimly, understood what the issues are in this conflict. It is but an extremely vague and quite inadequate analogy to the foulness, in heaven's sight, of human nature in even its purest expression in the very best, most upstanding and moral person ever to trod the earth.
Even Jesus, when the rich, young ruler referred to him as “good,” responded, “Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God.” Matt. 19:17. This is by no means to imply that Jesus in any way ever expressed iniquity in his earthly life, but only that he accepted as part of his sacrifice and humiliation, the fallen nature of humanity, and “was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.” Hebrews 4:15.
Previously it was quoted that, “The Lord Jesus came to our world, not to reveal what a God could do, but what a man could do through faith in God.” However, the apostate thing that has become of modern-day Christianity, believes in the gross superstition that, at the end, by some act of divine magic, God will transform a polluted, human soul into the pristine and holy image of Jesus. This, in their imagination, permits them to live a life of enjoying sin – only once in a while, mind you – expecting that God will short-circuit the process of time required to build a character fit for heaven. They have somehow come to define obedience as what they do between sins. Even Jack-the-Ripper had those moments.
God's attitude toward sin was succinctly expressed in a story of Calvin Coolidge, the 30th-president of the United States. He was given the nick-name Silent Cal because of his taciturn nature and reticence of speaking.
One Sunday morning, he attended church alone because his wife was not feeling well. When he returned, she asked what the minister had preached about. Coolidge's less than expansive response: “Sin.”
“Well,” his wife retorted, “what did he say about it?” Coolidge's reply: “He's against it.”
That is the Father's eternal response: sin is the problem and He is against it – very against it. So much so that He made the greatest sacrifice in the history of creation to eradicate it and save His children from its death-grip. Why then would He provide a salvation that tolerated its continued existence? The sacrifice of His Son was not intended to immortalize sin in earthly humans by its occasional indulgence – it was intended to eradicate it.
Nearly every Christian will admit that sin is voluntary, that, as Paul said, no temptation can overcome us but that God provides the way out of it. So, if one gives thought to the fact that no man can be forced to sin because God has given us power over it, that sinning is volitional, then why would anyone choose to sin, knowing what it cost the Son of God to rescue us from it?
The eradication comes only by the most profound knowing of God by His creation – His children, His Bride; by the absolute surrender of the creature, in every way, to his Creator. Only then can mankind experience what it is to have the most intimate relationship with Him.
— Thirteen —
THE SECOND COMING
A Grand Jury; a District Attorney; a Judge – and a Trial
“Everything we cannot thank God for, we reproach Him for.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer
“What can you do … against the lunatic … who gives your arguments a fair hearing
and simply persists in his lunacy?” ~George Orwell, 1984
Why is it that so many professed Christians talk about how they wait in breathless anticipation of the “second coming of Christ” and try, with great exegetical perspiration, to predict its advent, but are expressly terrified of the idea that the world is ending?
As in the Latin legal term, Sine qua non – you can't have one without the other – it's like the old saying that “everyone wants to go to heaven, but no one wants to die.” It has been heretofore inescapable logic that the former results in the latter. They want Christ to come, but they do not want their world to end.
The actual day-and-hour of Christ's second advent is not predicted in prophecy, however the time – or age – of its occurrence is.
“The prophecy in Daniel 9,” Wayne Bent observed, “says, 'Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people,' that's 490-years, 'and thy holy city to finish the transgression to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and the prophecy, and to anoint messiah.
“Know therefore and understand that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks and three score and two weeks. The street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times.'”
The present iteration of that prophecy “took place, 483-years, to the day,” Bent explains, “after Martin Luther began the Reformation, that Messiah was anointed.” That time span stretched from October 31, 1517, when Luther nailed his 95-Theses to the Wittenberg Chapel door, to October 31, 2000.
“Then, 'after three-score and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself. And the people of the Prince that shall come, shall destroy the city and the sanctuary.'”
“That's what happened in 2007,” Bent explained, “at the end of the seventy weeks.”
“And the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war, desolations are determined. And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week, and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease. For the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even unto the annihilation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.”
“So,” Bent concludes, “this is what we were for; this is what we came for. They came and destroyed the City and the Sanctuary.
“In 2008, they came against me with a flood, charged me with a crime that I did not commit, and convicted me as a felon, when I was innocent of the charges.”
In yet another epochal perversion of justice similar to the trial of Jesus and Barabbas, Bent's innocence of the charges brought against him was declared even by the presiding judge at his trial, Gerald Baca. The judge's words were recorded and also entered into on-the-record testimony. He was heard clearly stating that there was no evidence that the crime for which Wayne Bent was being tried was ever committed. This comment was made by Judge Baca to the opposing attorneys during closing arguments, after all evidence had been presented to the court.
Yet even with the judge's own testimony, which should have resulted in his issuing a directed verdict of not guilty, this judge, as did Pilate, gave in to the crowd – the prosecution, jury and public – who cried Crucify him; crucify him. And they did.
“They put me in prison for seven years. And while in prison, the first Day of Atonement for the Church was completed. That was August 6th of 2010.”
This six-thousand-year protracted warfare against God's principles of governance and justice is, without exception, at the heart of every conflict that has ever taken place on this planet. When Wayne Curtis Bent was anointed as God's instrument to commence the judgment, that warfare was directed at him, and by extension, at God. Any deviation from the agenda of the Synagogue of Satan, especially when those diverging from it have attained to a certain level of national or world prominence, will quickly become the target of their wrath; even more so of one who brings with him the Judgment of God.
“Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.” Rev. 12:12
That satanic wrath was exercised toward Bent by bringing him into a direct confrontation with the New Mexico legal system. Because of the lies, innuendo, twisted truths and general dark tenor of the National Geographic documentary, and its world-wide distribution, they were placed in a politically fraught situation. They felt they must address the implied accusations of illegal sexual promiscuity contained in the documentary. It was as if the movie was tailored specifically to create such a reaction from the public, and by their reaction, from law enforcement as well – and indeed, that is precisely what happened.
On May 20, 2008, as a direct consequence of the National Geographic documentary about Wayne Bent and his church and the political/social pressure that resulted from it, an illegally-seated grand jury in Union County, Clayton, New Mexico, handed down an unlawful indictment against the “self-proclaimed messiah.” The indictment was for the crimes of “criminal sexual contact of a minor” (two counts), and “contributing to the delinquency of a minor” (two counts).
Even at its outset, it seemed as if God was making a very clear issue that the trial of Mr. Bent was not only without merit, but patently illegal. New Mexico law states that a “grand jury shall serve for a period of no longer than three months.” NMSA 1978, Section 31-6-1 (1983)
At the time of Bent's indictment, they had already exceeded their legal period of service by over four months – more than twice their lawful mandate. This caused any action by the grand jury to exceed the legislated boundaries of their authority, thus making their indictment of Bent legally null and void. But those legal constraints seemed to carry no weight with the office of Union County's District Attorney. As far as they were concerned, Section 31-6-1 of the New Mexico Statutes did not exist. They simply ignored the law and legislated their own, by fiat.
The proscribed time limit of a grand jury's service, as clearly delineated by the existing statute, is for the purpose of not allowing the jurors to become overly acquainted and familiar with district attorneys seeking indictments at their hands. In their far-sighted consideration of such duties, those legislating the laws governing such matters, understood that it is much more difficult for a jury to counter the accusations of prosecutors if they have become, in a sense, somewhat friendly with them over time. Human nature strongly tends to desire the prestige and approval of being included in a good-'ol-boy's network, or whatever proximity to it is available. In this case, pleasing one in authority.
Even New Mexico TV news picked up on what was happening. One Albuquerque station posted the headline on their website: “DA Knew Grand Jury Expired, Charged Cult Leader Anyway” KOAT-TV, July 25, 2011
After Bent's conviction, having already spent two-and-a-half years in prison, the New Mexico Court of Appeals, in a unanimous decision by a three judge tribunal, managed to express some integrity in their opinion. They agreed that the law had been violated from the beginning by allowing an illegally extended grand jury to issue an indictment (even for a ham sandwich). They agreed that the trial was “illegal” and that Bent “should be released immediately.”
The Appeals Court stated:
“. . . we hold that this statutory term is a mandatory limitation on the grand jury’s jurisdiction. An indictment returned after the grand jury’s term expires is void ab initio [from the beginning]. Therefore, Defendant’s motion to quash the indictment should have been granted, as the grand jury was without legal authority to consider his case and return an indictment. As a result, the indictment issued by the grand jury was void, and the district court did not have jurisdiction to proceed with the trial in this case.”
However, in a vision of things to come, the law and the Appeals Court decision were wantonly disregarded, not only by then District Attorney, Donald Gallegos, but also, in an astonishingly revelent display of moral turpitude by even the Supreme Court of the State of New Mexico. The latter overturned the lower court's decision, thus making the de facto claim, by the highest court in the state, that it is acceptable to break the law in any instance in which the court found it convenient to do so, or if the decision presents as too disruptive to their tidy proceedings. Soon, it seems likely, they will be denying the 14th Amendment for equal protection under the law because, well, it's just too close to lunchtime. In this instance, they further emphasized their immoral decision by stating that there was “no remedy” for the illegal trial.
Court adjourned. There's an unindicted ham sandwich waiting for me.
“No remedy”? Uh … how about “You can go home now”? Or, “We're sorry for jerking you around just because people don't like your religion”? Nope! They then proceeded to reinstate the original, illegal conviction. This, as well as the progressive internal decay and self-destruction of every free society in history has shown, when in its death throes, laws apply only to the proletariat, never to the ruling class.
In the grand jury debacle, and in subsequent management of Bent's trial, D.A. Gallegos (and the New Mexico Supreme Court), was clearly shown to exhibit a veneration for only those laws that served his win/loss scoreboard and his political ambitions. And if the law doesn't serve that end? – damn the law! Gallegos was even heard to say, during a radio interview, that he was “doing God's work” in the prosecution of Wayne Bent. Separation of Church and State? not in his working vocabulary.
This assessment is not at all isolated to New Mexico jurisprudence. In a direct assault on freedom of religion, using the corona virus as precedent, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said: “It's no longer the separation of church and state; it's the separation of church BY state.” Political translation: The First Amendment to the United States Constitution is now a loosely malleable and inconsequential asset to be manipulated – or ignored – so as to serve any governmental agency, but not, as intended, a protection for its citizens' religious freedoms. Governor Cuomo, by informal declaration, announced that the state may, at will, marginalize or eliminate any freedom conferred upon US citizens by America's founding document when it advantages those in power.
Interestingly, Bent himself agreed with the assertion that the New Mexico District Attorney was being directed by God – but not in the manner or context that Mr. Gallegos was implying. He, Bent, claimed rather that these matters were ordained in the heart of God for the purpose of bringing to judgment all the covert and intentional inequities ever perpetrated by the legal systems of every nation on earth.
It isn't necessary, in God's view, that each one be arraigned before Him, individually. Since all of humanity suffers from the same moral degeneration, an appropriate representative sample is quite sufficient. If one doubts this, all one must do is look beyond the professed legal equities of any governmental system on earth, to the realities of how money and politics will always overrule justice when it serves the ruling elite. Certainly there are isolated examples where justice seems to peek out from behind the veil of governmental hypocrisy, but these are largely nothing more than a show or pretense designed as a bit of political melatonin to lull the populace back into a state of somnolence.
In his blatant disregard of the U.S. Constitution's First Amendment, this New Mexico district attorney (and the New York governor) apparently decided to enact private legislation of his own, predicated on his personal Roman Catholic principles (Cuomo, interestingly, is also Catholic). But would even the Catholic Church endorse such an incestuous relationship with the law? Well, there are scores of altar boys, past, present, and perhaps future, who would strongly assert that they do.
As egregious as even this act was, the illegal indictment brought against Bent, as it turned out, was the moral high point of the prosecutorial circus that ensued. It was all downhill from there.
“Inter arma enim silent leges” –In times of war, the law falls silent– ~Cicero
For six-thousand-years, this planet has been engaged in a warfare more violent and deadly than any that ever took place on earth, or any imagined future nuclear holocaust. It is a war for the souls of humanity, and the Adversary (the meaning of the name “Satan”), fueled with a hatred inconceivable to the human mind, is relentless, tireless and more vicious than the most vivid imagination can reach.
— Fourteen —
It is finished!