Many scenes in my book “The Kingdom, Here Be Dragons, Here Be Dreams” take place in the Kingdom of God. What is the Kingdom of God? It’s hard to explain because the Kingdom is both personal and all-encompassing. It’s not about church – although church can be part of it. This short whiteboard explanation is worth watching.
How essential is it for a nation to know their identity, their DNA, who they are and what they stand for? What have we been taught about our origins from the academic and scientific establishment?
God says “my people perish for lack of knowledge”, Hosea 4:6. It’s followed by a solemn warning about the consequences of rejecting knowledge. Again, he says “people without knowledge will come to ruin.” In Proverbs he urges us “Whatever you do, get knowledge, get wisdom.”
I’ve just finished reading for the second time a book “After the Flood” by Bill Cooper, an English historian. This book shows how European history can be traced right back to the flood and the descendants of Japheth, the son of Noah, through contemporary accounts and the table of nations.
The third chapter opens with a quotation from Nennius, a Welsh monk from the 9th Century; “I Nennius, pupil of the holy Elvodug, have undertaken to write down some extracts that the stupidity of the British cast out; for the scholars of the Island of Britain had no skill … I have therefore made a heap of all that I have found …”‘
Bill Cooper suggested the word Nennius used for stupidity would have been better translated as “complacency” or “lethargy,” the mood of the Britons that followed in the wake of the massacre of the monks at Bangor.
You see, their knowledge had been taken away from them.
“The profound cultural shock of seeing their finest scholars and spiritual leaders massacred by supposedly fellow Christians at the instigation of a Roman Bishop no less, would have left a very deep wound indeed, and it is this state of mind amongst the British or Welsh that Nennius laments and which lead to the neglect and loss of many records and books.”
Christianity was already established in Britain before Rome arrived. “That Christianity was firmly established in even remote parts of Britain at the close of the second century is shown by Tertullian stating “the Britons in parts inaccessible to the Romans, Christ has truly subdued.”
British Bishops attended the Council of Arles in 314AD, before the Roman Catholic church was formed. When Augustine went to Britain in 601AD as a representative of Rome, he could not get them to convert. The Welsh already had the true faith, given to them by the early church, and they did not need any new innovations from Rome.
When the monks refused to accept the doctrines of the Roman Catholic Church, he instigated the Saxon army to attack the monastery at Bangor-is-y-coed, killing 1200 monks and scholars.
Much was lost, including the history of the early British kings. To regain what was lost, I recommend you read the book “After the Flood.”
And now here we are at the end of the age. Has Britain abandoned its Christian heritage? Is Britain again in the grip of a culture shock following political correctness and imposed multiculturalism, with the resultant Islamic attacks in its cities?
Did you know that in World War 2 the nation, led by its King, prayed? When Britain stood on the brink of invasion, with 330,000 men trapped on the beach at Dunkirk, King George VI called for an unprecedented week of prayer. Throughout the country, people prayed on 26 May 1940 for a miraculous delivery.
May 29 was the day of the evacuation of Dunkirk. We know what happened. On the 28 May a storm of unprecedented fury grounded the German Luftwaffe – while the English channel became as still as a millpond, despite the storm in Flanders, enabling a vast armada of little ships, big ships, warships, privately owned motor-cruisers from British rivers and estuaries – in fact, almost anything that would float – to get the men off the beach.
The Queen has the title “Defender of the Faith.” Does she defend it? In 2014 she gave into political correctness, signing into law same-sex marriage, a law that the nation never gave the government a mandate for. Following that, Britain had a series of storms that were described by the British prime minister as “biblical.”
Who is going to the defend the faith now? British people, you do have a King … the same King as the Polish people.
Here is Poland the following year. In November of 2015 Poland marched in the streets and took a stand for Christianity. They declared boldly to the world “here, Jesus Christ is our King!” It was the biggest march in Poland’s history. The media were silent.
Is it time for the spirit of the nations to rise, to go to war again through intercessory prayer?
John R. Mott, Nobel Peace Prize winner, said “The Church has not yet touched the fringe of the possibilities of intercessory prayer. Her largest victories will be witnessed when individual Christians everywhere come to recognize their priesthood unto God and day by day give themselves unto prayer.”
Britain, as the sun sets in the west, may you remember who you are.
Ishmael, a character in my book is about to read my story. That’s not his real name, but it suits him. He is a Moslem. Before reading it, I was at pains to explain who “the King,” the main character in my book is.
“We worship the same God,” he replied, wanting peace between us.
Really? I heard the same thing from my new age publishing consultant. She believed the market would be fine with my story as “any deity could play the King.”
“You mean, Jesus could be the same as Allah?” I asked the publishing consultant, to clarify.
“Well, yes – as the Bible and the Quran contain many of the same elements” she replied.
It is true that Islam’s warlike prophet Mohammed did include parts of the Bible in the Quran. The Gospels had been around at least 500 years before Islam.
But both books can’t be right. I made it quite clear before publishing the book that I would not change the name of the King or dilute his persona or character – not for anybody. He is who he is.
“Who do you say I am?” Jesus asked.
“What is truth?” Pilate asked.
These are the questions we all have to decide. I only hope my book “The Kingdom, Here Be Dragons, Here Be Dreams” presents the King as he is in the Bible; the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God. 1 Timothy 1:17
For Ishmael’s sake, I did try to read the Quran years ago. I got through a good part of it before stopping at the part which advocated killing Jews and infidels. There are over a hundred verses in the Quran dealing with Jihad or holy war. That’s why we’re having so many problems with terrorism, which would be better named “Muslim fundamentalism.”
At his arrest, Jesus, the King in my story, told Peter “Put away your sword, for those who live by the sword will die by the sword.” Matthew 26:52.
Jesus fought with a different sword – the word out of his mouth.
After praying for wisdom, I tried a different tack with Ishmael. I looked at who Jesus, Isa is in the Quran. Much to my surprise, in the Quran Jesus is called “Spirit of God” and “Word of God.” And he is mentioned more in the Quran than Mohammed, their prophet.
But it’s like the truth is veiled from Ishmael. His religion is designed to keep them away from Christ. Knowing that only the true God can remove the veil. I presented Jesus, Isa to him as the “Spirit of God.” I can remember Ishmael referring to Jesus as such.
The Bible explains that with the Lord, there is freedom; “But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.” 2 Corinthians 3:16-18
This poem is for Ishmael. Although we are related through Abraham, peace cannot come through compromise. To agree that God and Allah are the same is to break the first commandment, which says; “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. “You shall have no other gods before me.” Exodus 20:1-3
Ishmael, my brother, How long shall we fight each other? My brother from times bygone, My brother - Hagar's son, My brother the wandering one. One angel was sent to us both, One angel watched over our growth - There in the wilderness, death threatened through thirst, I a sacrifice on the alter, Sarah's first. Ishmael, my brother, hear my plea: It was the angel who tied you to me. . . . Time is running out, put hatred to sleep. Shoulder to Shoulder, lets water our sheep.
Here is a Moslem who was asked “who is Jesus?” It’s 3.31 mins.
God is fussy about His name.
Islam has 99 names for God and they don’t match up.
How Muhammad Broke the 10 Commandments – #1 I am the Lord thy God
Jesus is “‘the stone you builders rejected, which has become the cornerstone.’ Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.” Acts 4:11-12
Early the first day of the week, the King rose from the tomb. (Mark 16, Luke 24)
Mary Magdalene saw him first.
“Woman, why are you crying? Who do you seek?” he asked.
Standing at the empty tomb weeping, Mary Magdalene didn’t recognise the King.
“They’ve taken away my Lord, and I don’t know where they’ve laid him. If you have taken him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.”
“Mary” the King said.
“Teacher” she cried in recognition, turning to him.
After being in the belly of the earth for three days and nights, even preaching to those who’d perished in the flood of Noah, the Lord had returned from death. (1 Peter 3:19)
He said, “Touch me not, for I am not yet ascended to my Father, but go to my brethren, and say to them, I ascend to my Father, and your Father, and to my God, and your God.” (John 20)
Obeying him, Mary, Joanna and Mary the mother of James went and told the disciples the Lord had risen, but they were not believed.
Meanwhile the Lord entered the Kingdom of Heaven, the keys of Death and Hell in his hands. The gates of Hell had not prevailed against him. Walking across the sapphire pavement, the resurrected Son of God approached the throne of his Father.
The eyes of the creatures hailed their creator as the angels formed a rank of honour. All bowed down as he passed.
A throne awaited him.
But first, before mounting the stairs to take his place at the right hand of the Father, the Son of God presented himself as the first of the harvest.
Looking ahead to the harvest of mankind that awaited, the angels sang for joy. The creatures added their voice, “Hail to the First-fruits of the earth.”
All of Heaven rose to their feet as the Father rose from his throne, accepting the sinless offering of the earth.
The Son of Man would serve as the High Priest of the New Covenant in the sanctuary, the true tabernacle set up by the Lord, not by a mere human being.
The sanctuary built by Moses was a copy and shadow of what is in heaven. This is why Moses was warned when he was about to build the tabernacle: “See to it that you make everything according to the pattern shown you on the mountain. Hebrews 8.
The only man-made thing in this place were the scars on the King’s body.
Now Heaven would await the arrival of the Church of the Firstborn.
And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. Colossians 1:18
Here are some interesting facts I found while writing The Lord of the Harvest. I wrote it to clear up some confusion over the end times harvests known as the rapture.
Did you know Jesus likened himself to a grain of wheat? There are fifty grains in a stalk of wheat and the Church began on the fiftieth day, a day which the Jews celebrated as the “Beginning of Harvest.”
- Jesus said of Himself, “I am the Bread of Life.”
- Bethlehem, where Jesus Christ was born, means “House of Bread.”
- Unleavened bread is eaten for seven days from Passover. The bread is striped and pierced. These stripes were seen by the prophet Isaiah 700 years before the birth of Jesus Christ; “But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5
- Jesus likened himself to a grain of wheat. A stalk of wheat has fifty grains. Jesus said, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much grain.” John 12:24
- The Church began on the fiftieth day after the Feast of First Fruits which was called “the Beginning of Harvest.”It was when the very first sheaf of the harvest was offered and waved before the Lord north, south, east, and west.
- The fiftieth day is also celebrated by Israel as the Feast of Shavuot when seven lots of seven weeks are marked off after the first three spring festivals of Passover, The Feast of Unleavened Bread, and Feast of First Fruits. Shavuot marks the all-important wheat harvest.
- The distinguishing feature of Shavuot is the offering of two leavened loaves of bread made of fine flour. The Greek word for leavened bread is ‘artos,’ meaning a raised loaf of normal, natural regular bread. With the leaven, it’s sure to rise.
- The temple at Jerusalem was built on Araunah’s threshing floor. Araunah means ‘ark.’ David paid Araunah fifty shekels of silver for it, denoting a full price and a full purchase. (2 Sam. 24:24)
- Jesus mentioned the First Fruits, the Beginning of the Harvest when he was in Sychar, a Gentile area.
“Do you not say, ‘There are still four months and then comes the harvest’? Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest!” John 4:35.
- Sychar means ‘end.’
As for the end, there has been much speculation about when this will be. Jesus said it’s not for us to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. Acts 1:7
But we can know the season. Jesus did leave a clue about it when he said in Matthew 24; “no man knows the day or the hour.” The autumn Feast of Trumpets was the only festival where the Jews did not know the day or hour it would be, as it was dependent on the first sighting of the new moon.
Paul wrote about the Church being gathered at the last trumpet; “Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed— in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.” 1 Corinthians 15:51
Two loaves, two harvests
- The autumn festival of Sukkot, the Feast of Tabernacles marks the ingathering. These are people from the Great Tribulation who have responded to the worldwide preaching of the 144,000 Jewish evangelists. They show up in Revelation 7, waving lulavs – a closed frond of the date palm tree waved at Sukkot.
The Autumn harvest will begin when the Times of the Gentiles are fulfilled.
These facts are summed up from my story The Lord of the Harvest.
Here’s another interesting site: The Biblical Feast of Firstfruits, How It Explains a Great Mystery
Do you have trouble understanding what the Bible has to say about the end times and how the Church fits into it all? I do. There’s talk about a possible rapture in September 2017 because of a planetary alignment in Virgo, as there was in September 2015. I don’t follow that – it just adds to our confusion and then people get put off when it doesn’t happen, as happened with Harold Camping.
It’s much better to get our information from the Bible.
But can we work out where we’re at now from things that were written 2,000 years ago?
The Word of God can be quite enigmatic. Sometimes it seems like code. And Jesus put events that happened thousands of years apart in one paragraph! How are we supposed to understand?
When I worked as a programmer, and I had poorly documented “spaghetti code” to decipher, I’d plunge into the code by setting up a watch on the variables – things that were running through the code, to see if the logic was correct.
So I did the same thing with the Word. I put myself in the story as a character, and met with the Lord who was already there in his assigned role as “Lord of the Harvest.” Then I set a watch on the scene, dialogue and events as they unfolded.
I’ve come away with a good story and a satisfying understanding of end times events.
And I believe I get to talk to God while I am in the story. I call it “going into the Kingdom.”
So here’s the first chapter of my quest. From this, I am already beginning to piece things together. I will sum it all up in a further post. Enjoy.
The Lord of the Harvest, part 1
Smiling, she met the Lord in a grain field near his birthplace at Bet Lehem, the ‘House of Bread.’
Plucking a head of grain, the Lord put it into her hand.
“You will find fifty grains in that head of wheat” he informed her.
His eyes had an intent look as she studied the wheat grain.
He said “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much grain.” John 12:24
The wind rippled wheat bowed to him as if to thank him for his word.
They walked along in silence for a while.
“Where are we going?” she asked.
“We are going to my Father’s house in Jerusalem six miles to the south, to the temple that was built on 1Araunah’s threshing floor. David paid fifty shekels of silver for it.”
“Why fifty?” she asked.
“Fifty denotes a full price and a full purchase” he answered. (2 Sam. 24:24)
“What does Araunah mean?” she asked.
“Ark” he replied.
They arrived in Jerusalem to joyous crowds, who had gathered at the temple for a spring festival.
“What are they celebrating?” she asked.
As a pilgrim brought the First Fruits to the Temple she heard him declare the word the Lord had commanded; “I declare today to the Lord our God that I have come to the country which the Lord swore to our fathers to give us …” Deuteronomy 26:3-10
Observing the offering, she was sorely aware she was a stranger here, a Gentile without Jewish roots.
“Can you please tell me about the festivals, beginning with Passover?” she asked.
“1You know the lamb’s blood was put on the lintel of the houses so the angel of death passed over my people in Egypt,” he reminded her. “My people celebrate for seven days in remembrance of this, without realising I am the Lamb of God. The Passover lamb is sacrificed at twilight. During this time, they eat Matzo, bread without leaven. The Greek word for unleavened bread is ‘azumos.’ The bread is striped and pierced, like my back.
Then there is a seven-week counting period after the three festivals of Passover, First-Fruits and Unleavened Bread.
Shavuot, the next festival means ‘weeks.’ It happens on the fiftieth day and marks the all-important wheat harvest. The distinguishing feature of Shavuot is the offering of two leavened loaves of bread made of fine flour.”
Putting the emphasis on leavened, he used the Greek word ‘artos’ for bread. It meant a raised loaf of leavened bread – normal, natural regular bread.
“Doesn’t leaven mean sin?” she asked.
“No, in this case, it means to permeate. The clue was in the three measures of meal – the amount used in baking the shewbread, ‘the Bread of Presence‘ for the Temple. (Exodus 35:13)
“Ah, so it’s sure to rise!” she quipped.
“Yes, anyone who believes me will be saved and I will raise him up on the last day,” he replied.
He continued, “I AM the Bread of Life. Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and are dead. This is the bread which comes down from heaven, that one may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread that I shall give is My flesh, which I shall give for the life of the world.” John 6:48
There were two leavened loaves for the two distinct groups celebrating the fiftieth day; The Jews celebrating Shavuot – the Feast of Weeks, and the Church observing Pentecost.
Taking the loaf for the Church, he broke it and offered her the bread.
“This is my body, given for you. Take, eat in remembrance of me” he said.
Taking the bread, she knelt, thanking him for his body.
“Can you please tell me about Pentecost?” she asked.
“The Church began on the fiftieth day,” he began; “After my suffering, I presented himself to my disciples and gave many convincing proofs that I was alive. I appeared to them over a period of forty days and spoke about the kingdom of God. On one occasion, while I was eating with them, I gave them this command: “Do not leave but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.” Acts 1:3-5.
“Fifty days after Passover, the Holy Spirit was poured out on 120 followers who waited in Jerusalem on the day of Shavuot when the first-fruits were being brought into to the Holy Temple. That day was called ‘Pentecost,’ meaning ‘fifty.‘ From this day, the spirit has been and is being poured out.”
“What does that look like?” she asked.
“Like the birth of a new person,” the Lord marveled. “I told Nicodemus, a teacher of the law that he had to be born again. Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ John 3:5-7
Watching the wind move through the wheat, the Lord said, “The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.” John 3:8
After the Holy Spirit was received by the 120 people, Peter, standing up with the eleven, raised his voice and said “Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and heed my words. For these are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day. But this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:
‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God,
That I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh;
Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
Your young men shall see visions,
Your old men shall dream dreams.
And on My menservants and on My maidservants
I will pour out My Spirit in those days;
And they shall prophesy. Acts 2:12-17
Leading her back to the wheat fields, the Lord said, “The spring harvest of first fruit has begun.” (1 Corinthians 15:20-23)
Reminding her of the first group of seventy, who had worked two by two, he said, “The harvest truly is great, but the are few; therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into His harvest.” Luke 10:2
“How long will the harvest go for?” she asked.
“It will continue until the end.”
Taking her to the fields of Sychar, he said “Do you not say, ‘There are still four months and then comes the harvest’? Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest!” John 4:35.
Sychar wasn’t a Jewish village.
Reminding her of what he told the woman of Sychar, he said “Woman, believe Me, the hour is coming when you will neither on this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, worship the Father. You worship what you do not know; we know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews. But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him.” John 4:30-23
“Ah” she said, getting it. He was speaking of two harvests. First Fruits represented Himself and the Church he had begun on the fiftieth day. It was already underway. The Autumn harvest, representing the Jews, would begin at its conclusion when the Times of the Gentiles were fulfilled.
“What does Sychar mean?” she asked the Lord of the Harvest.
“End” he replied.
Do you believe there are animals in the Kingdom of Heaven? Let’s imagine we can have a peek in the Kingdom from the Bible. Here’s the throne of God, with a floor of sapphire, and encircled by an emerald rainbow.
“In front of the throne on what looked like a sea of glass, clear as crystal. In the centre, around the throne, were four living creatures, and they were covered with eyes, in front and in back.” Revelation 4:6
Perhaps God has tried to show us with the peacock!
The Hebrew word for eyes is ‘ayin‘ which represents consciousness – the idea of seeing and watching as well as knowledge. Here in this world, our animals eyes show innocence, the innocence of our lost Eden. Before the throne of God, I can imagine their innocent eyes reveal intelligence and spiritual insight.
These creatures are in the midst of the throne so we can see that God has his companion creatures, just as we do.
The living creatures are of four types, and of four in number. Four is the “earth number,” for they have something to do with the earth. “They wait in eager expectation for children of God to be revealed.” Romans 8:19.
Animals have a soul. God had given his creatures breath, “ruach”, a soul – just as man has been given breath, a soul. “In his hand is the life of every living thing and the breath of all mankind.” Job 12:10
Does God care about our animals? I’d say yes, for he writes that a righteous man cares for the needs of his animal.” (Proverbs 12:10). He cares about us all.
He watches over them. Jesus said “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care.“ Matthew 10:29
The animals belong to God, and he knows each one. “Every animal of the forest is mine, and the cattle on a thousand hills. I know every bird in the mountains, and the creatures of the field are mine.” Psalms 50:10-11
It says in Revelation 4:11 that God created all things, and they were created for his pleasure.
Although the creatures are God’s, God placed them under Adam’s dominion. After the fall of man, all creation suffered when the Earth came under a curse.
Job, the oldest book in the Bible deals with suffering. Job spoke of the life of the creatures and the breath of all mankind being in God’s hand. He said, “Ask the animals, and they will teach you.” Job 12:7-10
The creatures can’t tell us, but they have this hope of being released from suffering. They’re looking forward to the day when they can join us in the new Kingdom, where there will be no more death or suffering.
For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed. For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God. We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. Romans 8:19-22
All creatures will be brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God when God’s Kingdom comes.
The wolf will live with the lamb, the leopard will lie down with the goat, the calf and the lion and the yearling together; and a little child will lead them. Isaiah 11:6