Hide & Seek

(Conclusion)

by Jeff Pohlman

© 17 September, 2005

 

Conclusion - -  The Games & Real Life

What do you think would happen if I were to arrive home one day and announce to my wife that I am now going to have several more marital relations all at once while continuing on with her, that it is okay as far as I am concerned, and that we don't need to tell God about it?  I think I can hear your roaring responses.

Now.  What do you think Jesus' response would be when you or I arrive at the threshold of relationship and announce that we are going to have deep intimate relationship with Him, plus we are going to add a few other things like idols, food or alcohol-drug addictions, liturgies or sacraments of our own human design, and so on, that WE think it is okay to do these things, and don't tell Father?

I'll let you decide whether you are trying to pull such wool over Father's eyes in your own behavior, but I know that He doesn't let me get away with it.

Those are the sorts of things we have just discussed in Part 1 and Part 2.

By the way, to deceive someone by pulling wool over their eyes originally comes from Canadian author and humorist Thomas C. Haliburton's book, The Clockmaker (1838), in a section that was referring to a practice common in the day, where men indeed wore wool wigs, and he wrote a phrase about temporarily-and-quickly pulling another fellow's wig over his eyes to keep him from seeing what was really going on.

 

THE CHILD'S GAME

I don't know of any adults who knowingly play the game of Hide & Seek with each other on purpose, it certainly does not attract the TV cameras of ESPN or any other sports or X-Games broadcasts.  I'm told that some people think this is how their job feels at times when handled by their corporate managers.  But more to the point, mostly kids play it and some parents might play this with their children.  For a moment, let's take a look back at some of the loosely-held rules of engagement.

In a school gym class setting, students will occasionally be encouraged to play a game called Tag You're It, where running around the length of the school's football field or the basketball floor of the gym,  for a half-hour, is the object; running, dodging, avoiding each other, passing on the "Tag-You're-It," and so on.

The game of Hide & Seek is generally an extension of that Tag game, but there is not the constant frenetic frenzy of the whole group being in one confined space and openly seen.  Instead, one person is "It," and counts to a randomly-chosen-number, while all other contestants hide, and then "It" proclaims "Ready or not, here I come."  There typically is a place that is chosen by the majority (or a bully) to be "base" or "home."  The object becomes for all of the "hiding" contestants to make it back to home-base without being tag-touched (maybe tackled) by "It," by whatever cunning and clever means possible.  If the hider makes it easily and safely, the proclamation of "Home Free All," is usually announced, especially to frustrate "It" even further, knowing that another one got by It's grasps.  Occasionally there is quibbling over who made it to base first, when there's an outright race for who-touched-base-first, i.e. whether It got to the hider before the hider touched home base.  These are the deeper subtleties of playing the game, and the hair splitting that goes on, especially as humans get older, more cunning, and unfortunately possibly even nefarious.

Certain "sore losers" are prone to reinvent the rules, when they don't make it to home base.  I don't have to give you examples because I am sure you have plenty of your own from game play in your life.  But let's look at why this is relevant to our discussion of hidden idols.

 

REVISIT OF LEGAL FICTIONS

Back in Part 2 we talked about the importance of personal one-on-one deep relationship with Jesus flowing in you and through you as you, and how satan's substitution-schemes are cunning (his innocent-looking but insidious twists of light), because he has a way of slightly bending rules, and I mean ever so slightly, to make it look "okay," and the next thing you know, you've given up that true precious relationship with Jesus, holding on to an empty form but lacking the substance.  This is a harrowing discussion because it rocks us to the spirit-core, and we truly don't want to be betrayed in this matter, yet we find many who turn around to look and discover that they gave up the substance, and all they have is the form - a day of great sorrows.

One of those schemes we mentioned was that of the legal fiction.  The tactic of the legal fiction is most pervasive and accepted in the legal and business world today.  You can go reread it again in Part 2, but I'll present a slightly different view here.

REVIEW:

I am Jeff Pohlman, the true and real USA citizen, currently resident of one of the fifty individual states of Texas.

I could go down to the county court house and register in the office of fictitious or assumed name filings, as the d.b.a. Fun Time Publishing, and in this legal fiction - I am said to be a sole proprietor (which means that even though I can sign checks and represent my self as Fun Time Publishing, I am still personally liable for my business's actions as Jeff Pohlman-the-citizen).

I could also register with the Secretary Of State as an incorporated entity, also known as a legal fiction, and become a company, corporation, incorporation, limited partnership and so on, but let's just randomly say I become Fun Time Publishing, Inc.

As such, I can set up the articles of incorporation to read that there are 1,000 shares of stock valued at $1.00 each, and that there is no personal guarantee by myself (the citizen) or any other members of the board of directors of Fun Time Publishing. Inc.  If the company makes any mistakes, recourse is taken against the company (as if it is a real person), and I am absolved of personally guaranteeing or paying back for loss, in case of the mistake.  If need be, where the stock value is depleted and there are no other funds to pay back, the company can be bankrupted and shut down, leaving no means of restitution to the unfortunate people against whom the mistake was directed.  For the customer, this is difficult.  For the business owner, it is a form of protection in case of a frivolous or a persistently annoying law suitor (unfortunately - there are unscrupulous-types just waiting to file another frivolous law suit).  If someone is in a business with high levels of personal liability, this can be a protection.  In the hands of unscrupulous business people, it is the stuff that makes for fraud cases, where things are done on purpose, and then they think they can hide behind the "veil" of incorporation.  I'll not go into a deep discussion of corporate veils here, I'm sure you now see how legal fictions are used, in a means that is acceptable for protection of citizens as legal-fiction entities in business and law realms.

APPLICATION:

The problem for us comes when matters of God's called out ones (ekklesia) are brought into line with state run legal fictions, generally called non-profit or religious organizations.

Up until the time of Emperor Constantine in the 300's A.D., followers of Christ had become named as "Christians" (starting soon after His ascension), and were basically hounded, persecuted and killed, for not bowing to Roman rulers, in the flesh, or their figurines, nor willingly engaging in "worship" activities with the other idols of the day.  Various reasons have been documented about why Constantine declared (fiat) a complete reversal (you know that collectable tax revenue and money had a lot to do with it), but "Christianity" became the newly approved state (government-sanctioned) religion.

A cathedral, chapel or temple building is an easy target for a tax collecting agency.  If the governmental ruler can get the assembling body within said building (or the larger sectarian denomination) to accept the terms of calling itself a legal fiction, set up by the state, voilą, tax collection becomes a cinch.  In our day, this principle works just slightly differently, where the assumption of a legal fiction name and accompanying tax ID allows one, instead, to have tax exempt status and the giving of funds to God's work becomes not an issue of the ekklesia giving from the heart to the priestly leader's and their fulfillment of their duties, but one of laity giving to the legal fiction's coffers and cause, in order for the laity to lessen its tax burden owed to the state (motive being the point).

More importantly, satan's twist is almost complete, if the duped individuals, or the group accepts it - i.e. they give up their deep spiritual relationship with Jesus and accept the fiat substitute of a ritual and building as the proxy in its place.  To complete the twist, the duped also accept having one human be appointed THE vicarious replacement, maybe even wearing a ceremonial hat that declares that that person is indeed "In Place (vicar) Of Christ."  How handy!  Now the duped don't have to be personally responsible for their spiritual relationships with Christ flowing in them and through them as them, they can just cast the spiritual responsibility on some proxy/ vicar/ leader, throw money at him or her, maintain a few token ceremonies (sacraments) and go on with debaucherous life (I'm being facetious of course).

The ensuing years after Constantine's declaration saw a proliferation of state "religions," many with so-called titles that included Christendom's figures and names.  These incorporated beings became legal fictions.  Form.  As you can imagine, in some instances, the functioning substance of true relationship of Jesus living in and through a being, as that being, became totally lost.  You might even discern where idols (by the true Hebrew meaning) and other relics became the focal point, instead of true spirit-relationship (remember? vicarious, proxy, replacement, substitute, fiat, even legal fiction).

I previously pointed out that a thorough study of spire monuments and church steeples will take you directly to a discovery of how they were-and-are pagan asherah-pole idols used in the Feast of Ishtar and many other pagan sex (seasonal-change) celebrations.  That's only scratching the surface.  I don't want to throw stones, nor do I feel like offending my friends who may still enjoy being within certain religions.  But many, especially the most major, have multiple flagrant symbology and relicry that is all idol-worship in origin, truly derived from paganism over time.  The redemptive phrase is used where these unwitting people of today don't realize the pagan origins, and for them, they are looking to Jesus and not to pagan sex-idols.  That's all well and good, until they come to the realization of the truth, and then they have to make decisions between themselves and Christ, whether to allow substitutes for Him, or to go for the real deep personal relationship with Him.

Attendants of some religious groups hold onto nothing more than a form, a tradition, an incorporated being, without a whiff of the substance of true deep spirit-relationship with Jesus.  I am not here to call names or throw rocks.  I am absolutely sympathetic, and truly want you only to see for yourself, hoping to help you break free from the proverbial snare of a fowler, in case you are caught in it.  That's all.  If you're not caught, then great!!!

I am simply pointing out to you how satan is indeed patient, and he will patiently and subtly wait, twisting ever so slightly, from one generation to the next, wanting to scuttle all of the deep personal relationships he can get away with.  It is incumbent on each one of us to personally examine our individual depth of relationship and decide whether we have given up, or lost, or maybe never even had, deep spirit relationship with Jesus and His called out ones.  I can't look at you and decide for you, and you can't look at me and decide for me - it's truly a personal discernment decision situation.  Then we get to decide whether to change toward that true and good relationship or to maintain the course of the same old form-without-substance, just because it feels good, because it has always felt good, and we sure don't want to change now because it would certainly be embarrassing.

Many people had already come to the North American continent by the mid-1500s, and many were already being slaughtered for true belief in a simple relationship with Jesus (by the same old state religions from Europe and England).  As one example, study the martyrdom of over 400 French Huguenots in Saint Augustine, Florida in 1565, by Spanish Catholic conquistadors, at a sandy beach inlet that is still called Matanzas - a Spanish word meaning slaughters.  You'll find out about where the phrase comes from "a line drawn in the sand," and the consequence of crossing it.  The killers supposedly, and the martyrs ALL living out personal beliefs for Christ!  Supposed-brethren, killing brethren.  The distinction of state-religions becoming legal fictions and replacing true relationships with Christ had truly become a big blur by this time in history.

With such events being as current history for the 1700's founding fathers of the USA Constitution, they saw the need to keep any religion from becoming a "state-religion."  And, that is the true intent of Jefferson's side comment (not written as law anywhere) about "separation of church and state" (not the removal of all references to any religion from government).  Our founding fathers already had over two-hundred-years of history in America to leverage from, as well as all of Europe and England's historical depths, and they did not want any more approved state religions.  They wanted religion to run free in the land.  No more legal fictions parading around as ordained by the government head's of state.  Ironically, the same old traditional hollow state religions did indeed rush into the land, right along side the new and fresh groups of Jesus' called out ones.  In time, over the last 200 years of history, since the 1700s, incorporated legal fictions have gotten the bulk of attention, and those interested in the ekklesia (true called out one's spirit relationship) have quietly been out of the focus of society.

 

WHAT ARE ACTUAL SUPERSTITIONS WE HOLD DEAR?

You can answer these for yourself.

Let's look at the child's game first.  Does the person who is It have to count to 100?  How about 10?  How about 9?  How about 12½ in increments of quarters?  What if he or she doesn't really hide eyes while counting?  Does home base have to be a stationary place, like someone's concrete front porch to their house?  What if home base were to be a hanging tire swing ten feet in the air, blowing around in the wind, suspended by a rope, and you had to touch it with a found-tree-branch?  What if it were a bright spot on a forest-floor amidst the rest of the shadows cast by the tree-top-leaves, and it moves around a bit as the wind blows the tree tops, and the sun moves across the sky (although we know the sun doesn't move)?  What if the person who is It doesn't touch you to make you It, but throws a rubber ball that touches you instead?  What if you catch it, and throw it back, or at someone else instead?  What if It shoots a paint-ball-gun and splatters you with color, definitively showing that you have been hit, and you're now It?

These can all just as easily be said to be superstitions (although that may upset your need for order - and then the game becomes very disturbing, especially if you have a deep-seated need for tradition and order).

Let's look at the legal fictions.  Who says you have to meet in any one place?  What is the true history of steeples on the buildings?  Who says you have to have a tax license?  Should we be celebrating Anastasis or The Feast Of Ishtar (Easter)?  Who says you have to incorporate as a non-profit organization?  Do you really need to have a creed, or a certain color of carpet, pews or chairs, a board of directors?  Is a collection of people who all profess to be Jesus called out ones (ekklesia), standing in the middle of the woods or a parking lot, on a Tuesday or Thursday afternoon, not His ekklesia?  Do they need to be in a building only on a Sunday morning or Wednesday evening, with a priest directing the order of ceremony, service and sacrament, in order to be rightfully called a "church"?  What IS a church anyway?  Is it EVER mentioned in original writings of scripture?

Now I've gone on and meddled.  Again, I don't mean to throw rocks, or pick on any one.  I am provoking you a bit, to get you to search the depths of your spirit-heart, not to cut you off, but to keep you on Jesus' high ground.  I want you to look at the bulk in your life and question whether you have been holding dearly to a form or superstition, or religion, or whether you've been delving into the function of substance of a deep personal spiritual relationship of Jesus in you and through you as you.

We could go on for quite some time, but I hope you start seeing that WE are the ones arbitrarily making up the rules.  As such, who says they are right or wrong?  Who says that any of the Hebrews ceremonial laws that developed over a long long long time were right or not?  Think for just a moment - did Jesus ever rail against any of them that you know of - in scripture?  Is it possible that He reduced them to a few or a handful?  Just curious?  What part did Father's grace play in all of this rule-making?  Was it for safety, or protective obedient order, or was it out of cruel desire to make humans conform against their will?  Who defined the rules of Christendom?  What are they - REALLY?  Mind you, I am never promoting lawlessness, chaos, or anarchy - because there most certainly IS order in Jesus Kingdom (it just isn't typically found within the traditions, sacraments, religions and manuscripts of men - and if it is, it is rare).

This discussion could be very unsettling for some people, and I can't say that I am sorry for upsetting you, IF IT BRINGS YOU SQUARELY AROUND TO RIGHT RELATIONSHIP IN JESUS.  If you feel that I am meddling in something that you would rather not mess with, then you'll turn off your computer and never come back to this site.  Maybe you won't even speak to me about it.  If you want the deep spirit relationship, then you'll really delve into it, in and through Jesus and His blood and Spirit, without the silly superstitions of men.

 

CITY OF REFUGE - BASE FOR HIDE & SEEK

We must wind this whole teaching toward a close now, and we will do it this way, looking at the concept of being able to Hide, as coming from physical protection AND deliverance, which WAS also originally found in scripture.

BACKGROUND:

Ironically, the word Exodus, the name for the second book in the Hebrew's Pentateuch and the Christian's Bible, is a Greek word, meaning "the out road."  In some "Christian" circles, we laughingly refer to this as "The Left Foot Of Fellowship Applied As Positive Posterior Protoplasmic Stimulation."  In business, we might refer to it as "The Boot."  Okay, enough for humor.

Firstly, the twelve Hebrew tribes of Israel were all given specific territories to own and possess in Canaan, after they were exited (booted, the grand exodus), departed from Egypt.  Father God gave specific territorial rites to each of the twelve tribes.  Hebrew tradition holds that the boundary for these territories goes all the way down to the center of the earth and all the way up into the sky.  In modern times we fully understand the concepts of mineral rights under the ground, international boundaries in the water, and air space fly-zones.  But what about the priests, they were to own no land, and to simply be servants to the people?  Oh I can just hear modern civil liberties groups crying out "That's no fair!"

Well, our God is a just AND loving God, and He made a provision for the priesthood, and it can be found in Numbers 35 : 7, in the Bible (or the Pentateuch).  He told the people, through Moses, to give to the priesthood, out of the inheritance of their possession that He had just given the rest of the nation, forty-eight priestly cities to live in and personal pasture lands within thousands of cubits close by and around the forty-eight cities' walls, so they didn't have to travel far.  These were never to be taken back from the priests.  Not only was this because the priests weren't given specific territories to inherit otherwise, but because the work of an Israelite priest is tedious and time consuming in its detail, and a priest does not need to be traveling far to upkeep his property as well as maintain priestly duties.

This is a beginning hint to us, that our inheritance (as a Kingdom & Nation of priests under The Great High Priest) is not in the Earth.  Our inheritance is in Jesus, as type-shadow-figure-and-reality The Great High Priest, and our inheritance is a deep relationship - transcending all boundaries and forms created by man's hands or otherwise.

Back to Israel, subtly speaking, the protection of the priesthood was also squarely on the shoulders of the Israelites, seeing as the priests were within their borders and territories, not on the perimeter edges, so the priest's position was only vulnerable if the whole-of-Israel didn't do their job of watching out for their priestly brethren.  Yes, this is all in the flesh, and it doesn't address the fact that Father God was their protection first and foremost.  We are talking about the set-up of the first rules of engagement for the game of Hide & Seek.  If you didn't obey God, then these all became superstitions and an embarrassment anyway, because He and His protection departed, and left you vulnerable.

Out of these forty-eight priestly cities were set aside six special cities, designated to be Cities Of Refuge.  Again, we are looking at the original rules of engagement for the game Hide & Seek.

Num 35 : 6-  And the cities which you shall give to the Levites shall be the six cities of refuge, which you shall give for the manslayer to flee to; and in addition to them you shall give forty-two cities.

(New American Standard Version [NASV]- AMG Publishers - Spiros Zodhiates, Th.D. Greek Study Bible)

You can read the rest of Numbers 35 to see the details of what these six cities of refuge offered.  In short, if you screwed up and killed a man, and were sure it was an accidental mistake, you could flee there until your case was handled by a congregation and overseeing priest, where your sentence was reviewed, and hopefully you would be absolved, declared free of being put to death for the murder.  The freedom still had its restrictions.  You were only free to live within the city walls of the City Of Refuge, and you would not be free to leave until the High priest who heard your case died.  Until then you had to stay within the city walls, or the avenger of the murdered had full right to kill you.

There were a few more rules, but you see how this was a beginning to what we have as a system now utilized within churchdom.  For many ages since Constantine's declaration, church buildings have been declared as institutional places of refuge.  Many christianist religions have developed legend over the ages, where their ministerial workers wear certain specific uniforms, garb, jewelry, reliquary, what have you.  The legend of the uniform garment is that it's an obvious visual mark that separates them from the clothing and jewelry styles of the moderns they live amongst, and as such, it makes them immune, hopefully keeping unscrupulous criminal villains from perpetrating crimes upon those ministers and those within the minister's direct care.

You are going to have to answer whether that is all superstition, a legal fiction, or not.  I won't.  Better yet, where is it that you find true protection from your God, The Creator of the Universe?  Putting a pagan steeple on a roof, with a cross on top of that, or holding up a silver cross versus a wooden cross and thinking that a perpetrator of death will not slay you, has to be reviewed as to whether it's a superstition or not, no matter how popular the belief is presented in movies and books.  By the time Jesus arrived in human chronological history, the rules of engagement for cities of refuge had gotten way out of hand.  Much like the questioning I shot at you above regarding the game of Hide & Seek played in your neighborhood or back yard.  The difference being that the Hebrew rules were multiplied over some 4,000± years of Israel's history.  What we have as cities of refuge, in this 21st Century are wide superstitions.  If they are reviewed by the true researcher, where the element of "true-spiritual-relationship with-and-through Christ" is left out, the researcher might end up in some form of spiritist existentialism, or worse, a spirit depression wasteland.

 

BROAD APPLICATION

Let's boil this down to what it means for you today.  If you are not convinced that playing the substitution-game is a method you want for your personal relationship with Jesus in you and through you as you, here is a practical means of getting clear of the games - the superstitions.  You may even hear some well-meaning Christians label this something like deliverance.  I'll not get strong on labeling here, but the word deliverance has its application here, because you may see that you truly need to be delivered from the hands of the sinister and figurative fowler who has caught you in a snare, maybe even the worst of snares, that you cannot get free from on your own doing.  However, the deliverance CAN be described in very simply terms and methods.  The execution of it may be a little more tedious, it just depends on how deep in you are caught.  So here it is.

For true deliverance in spirit and in truth, either...

    Change the rules

Sit down and write out what the rules are that you are playing by at the moment.  Believe this, Father God, The Creator of the Universe is not diminished if you then challenge everything.  Simply ask Him what is truly of Him, and what is not.  He'll answer you.  You don't need someone else to interpret this for you.  You can go to Him directly, and He will answer you directly.  It's a good idea to have His written Word (Bible) alongside, as He will speak to you figuratively through it, as well as to your spirit directly, and through some of the chosen called out ones surrounding you (hopefully there are some of those in your life).  Ask Him what His rules are - truly - simply.  Change the rules you play by to be those, ONLY.  Why play by any other rules?  Find out what He says.  What ARE His rules?

                            ... OR...

    Don't submit to playing the game

If you are sick and tired of playing Hide & Seek in the neighborhood and backyard of a bully, then stop.  Stop submitting yourself to the abuse.  Stop showing up.  Imagine if you showed up monthly to play a card game along with everyone else, who all came to table with $1,000 every time you played, and every time, you played until one person had won all of the money brought to table (sort of like the ultimate ending of Monopoly®, where every player is bankrupt, except one king -of-the-hill).  Now, imagine if you started to discover that of the seven players, three of them consistently cheated, and only those three won, where it came down to the three cheaters tricking each other most artfully and treacherously, where one of them always won, depending on who was most tricky that month.  All of the players show up nonetheless, unwilling to choose change, because they allow themselves to be bullied by conversations during each month, and are afraid to appear as chicken, scared, or less than macho, their pride has fully gotten in the way, and they have given up.

The stakes are much higher than that, when it comes to your personal relationship with Jesus in you and through you as you.  This is not a singular gambling hall or arena where you can necessarily put your finger on it, like Las Vegas, Atlantic City, or Monte Carlo.  No, those are small by comparison.  This is you making a choice for your spirit-life in eternity.  Will you continually submit to others making the rules?  Will you keep showing up, despite the ritual abuse you take every time?  Are you addicted to such an abusive form of religion that it has faked you out of your real spiritual-life birthright for your whole life so far, or are you choosing to be fully alive with a deep Jesus-based spiritual relationship?

 

GETTING PERSONAL

This whole teaching is NOT a treatise on full, complete and free deliverance in spirit, but it is simply a sprinkling of a start.

Obviously, in real life, adults could have all sorts of problematic situations that need overcoming from their hidden, seemingly-secret things.

Here's a short-list:

Ö  actual true-meaning-of-the-word idol pornographic material, or

Ö  secret stashes of booze for the alcoholic, or

Ö  hidden cases of Twinkies® and Snowballs® in secret out-of-the-way closets for the glutton, or

Ö  a tongue depressor near the toilet for the bulimic, or

Ö  a deck of cards in the glove box and the ultimate lying about a night-out for the gambler, or

Ö  glue/ aerosol cans/ methamphetamines (pick your poison) disguised and stashed in the bathroom medicine cabinet for the drug addict,

...these are just a proverbial tip of the iceberg, because if it's hidden, and it's destroying your deep personal relationship with Jesus in you and through you as you, it's got to be brought to His light, confessed before Him, asked forgiveness of, and then ask Him to replace those addictive behaviors with HIM!!!

This takes some serious spirit walking.  Many times it can't be done alone.  My own Dad will tell you that he quit drinking alcohol "cold turkey" (as it's called) and he's never turned back once.  My Dad's a special guy.  I know it has worked on a few occasions for some people, but many times it also requires a prayer partner, a confidant, a mentor, a counselor, a pastor, someone to help hold your figurative feet to the fire of His cleansing, and ultimate integrity of accountability.

Some people may need a good Christian medical doctor, psychologist, and even some deep spiritual prayers for deliverance (meaning that elders in your ekklesia may need to be involved).

My situation was quite drastic, where He had to get my attention in a vehicle that was flipping three times at speed on a highway, and when it stopped, it was the middle of winter - cold - in Pennsylvania.  Our conversation in Spirit was enough to convict me, He allowed me to live, and I was healed of the insidious alcohol and drug abuse, and cigarette smoking I was within.  It took a little over a year to really be free and clear of it, for me.  Some people have it happen instantly, some people take a little longer.

Whatever the case, be sure you have brethren who are definitely called by Jesus' name surrounding you, people who know what it has been to walk through His fire, and come out on the other side in His righteousness, only because He did it.

In these situations, Jesus is definitively calling you to an accountability level you haven't known before - quite the opposite of hiding.  It may seem unfair to you, but your openness will need to be several notches higher than what you might think other people's is, because you have a problem that has transgressed spiritual relationships that have gone on in private, in hiding, and you need accountability in the worst way, while some of it may need to be executed in public for a while.  The accountability will be something you will be grateful for in the long run, but it might feel restrictive and painful in the short run..  Trust Jesus, it is worth it, and it will become a hallmark of your life from here on out, that you are a person of integrity, with the deepest relationship possible, for all of eternity.  Hide and Seek, by His grace, mercy and humbleness becomes Show and Tell.

 

A LESSON FROM GEOGRAPHY & HISTORY TOGETHER

Here's a great way to close this subject of hide and seek.  Most everyone is aware of the state motto of New Hampshire, "Live Free Or Die," which is seen on their license plates (it was also utilized in the early days when the UNIX software was being launched, in reference to their breaking free from what they termed as tyrannical Microsoft).  A small history lesson for you.

The state emblem of New Hampshire is an elliptical panel, and there's a replica of the "Old Man Of The Mountain" (a naturally occurring stone face, high above the Franconia Notch gateway in northern New Hampshire) within the inner panel. Within the outer ellipse is the declaration of the state's name on top, and the motto on the bottom.

The words "Live Free or Die," are part of a longer quote written by General John Stark (the state's most distinguished hero of the Revolutionary War), on July 31, 1809.  In 1809 and 1810, the General was invited to speak at reunions of the soldiers who fought in the 1777 Battle of Bennington in Vermont, but he declined due to his poor health.  His full response was a toast nonetheless, which said, "Live free or die; death is not the worst of evils."  The 1945 state legislature gave New Hampshire its official motto and emblem, as World War II was near its end, and the state's famous Old Man Of The Mountain was voted the official state emblem of The Granite State.

Ironically, the legend runs even deeper.  The Old Man Of The Mountain is actually formally referred to as being on the side of the larger Profile Mountain.  The Profile is composed of Conway-Red-Granite and is an illusion formed by five ledges, that when lined up correctly, give the appearance of an old man with an easterly gaze, clearly distinct and visible from only a very small space near Profile Lake. When viewed from other locations in Franconia Notch, the same five ledges have a very rough and ragged appearance, and there is no suggestion of The Profile.

Daniel Webster is quoted as saying, "Men hang out their signs indicative of their respective trades; shoe makers hang out a gigantic shoe; jewelers a monster watch, and the dentist hangs out a gold tooth; but up in the mountains of New Hampshire, God Almighty has hung out a sign to show that there He makes men.  Thus it happens that New Hampshire has her Profile, 'The Old Man of the Mountain,' sublimely outlined against the western sky; a sign unique, distinctive, and inspirational as to the kind of men the sons of the Granite State should be."

Well, since Mr. Webster said that, then it could also be said that The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away, because on May 3rd, 2003, shortly after the new U.S. commemorative quarter-dollar coin-design was released into circulation for the State of New Hampshire, the entire figure fell off the side of Profile Mountain, never to be seen again.  Such is the way with images (not in the Hebrew sense of the word), even those that were truly hewn by God Himself!!!

So, back to our subject, I would say simply, in reference to our subject of playing hide and seek, and meddling with hidden idols, Live FreeBecause, the spiritual death (separation from God Himself) that comes from engaging those substitute hidden idols is terrible for all eternity.  Please, I encourage and exhort you, choose to live openly, in full relationship-flow with Jesus, because no substitute, no idol, no proxy, no vicar, no legal fiction is worth the effort that is made to substitute it for the real spiritual thing of Jesus in you and through you as you.

 


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