Our Anglo-Israel Faith continually directs its followers back to the Bible, back to the Divine Source of its authority, back to the simple, basic Truth of God and man set forth in those sacred pages. The leaves of the Bible are for the healing of men and of nations. Bible history could provide the needed guidance for crucial national decisions of today. The words of Jesus which healed the repentant Magdalene, when read in that precious Volume today, are just as potent to save the repentant sinner or to set our Anglo-Israel nations back on the right Way now as they were then. The truths taught to His disciples and followers have lost none of their Divine power over the centuries.
When we read the Book of the Acts of the Apostles we find that the Truth taught to those Apostles by Jesus lost none of its power when their Master left them. The historian Edward Gibbon records in his great work, The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire that Christian healing flourished for almost three hundred years after the Crucifixion of Jesus. Just as the truths of mathematics never vary or diminish, so the truths that Jesus taught are invariable over the millennia. They cannot be permanently corrupted or obscured. “Truth will out.” As long as Christians have their Bibles they have an unfailing Guide if they will but accept the guidance waiting there.
That dedicated Christian soldier Paul admonished his fellow-Christians, “But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtility, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.” It is said that the early Christian church lost much of that vital simplicity when the Roman emperor Constantine adopted Christianity in 312 A.D. When the State-sponsored Christian Faith became popular and fashionable, its church buildings magnificent, its pastors and ministers gorgeously robed, then its simplicity quickly diminished and its vital Power diminished accordingly.
That simple, honest, unpretentious Truth taught and demonstrated by Jesus, by His twelve disciples, and by the seventy He sent forth as recorded in Luke 10:1 seems today to be so obscured as to be almost lost. Men and nations are floundering and confused. When we listen to some of our TV evangelists, when we read much of the religious literature flooding the market, and when we observe the erratic course of the world’s political leaders, we sometimes think in despair that our societies have lost that Christian simplicity with its accompanying spiritual Power. There is too often a marked contrast between the flood of oratory directed at us today from pulpit and press and our Lord’s sermons spoken on the hillsides or from the seashore. Those sermons of Jesus were direct, simple, uncomplicated, His Message made crystal clear by His use of down-to-earth parables of everyday things. He used parables of the fig tree, the good seed, the flowers of the field, the husbandman, the fisherman, the mustard seed – simple examples which He used to illustrate lofty spiritual truths, the Truth of God and man. Jesus revealed Truth. His simple requirement is that it be faithfully followed.
That Truth of God and man which Jesus taught was uncluttered with high-flown phrases, but His Word was “with power” to heal, to enlighten, and to save. His words fell like a healing balm on the souls of repentant sinners, but they struck like a thunder bolt against the evil of the carnal mind which is enmity against God. When He spoke, multitudes were moved to forsake their sins and to accept His Way. Human ignorance, the basis of sin, gave way before the revelation of God’s Truth spoken by Jesus. That Truth made them free. Just as a bright light dispels darkness, so did God’s Word, spoken by our Saviour Jesus, dispel the ignorance and the fears, the diseases and sins, from the lives of His receptive listeners. Satan had met his Master and was forced to flee.
Many of the proud Pharisees and lawyers, blinded by their pride of scholarship, despised Jesus and His simple, uncomplicated teachings. He had never been schooled in religion as they had, and they said, “How knoweth this man letters, having never learned?” Their pride prevented them from perceiving Truth when it was spoken to them, because they thought they already knew all there was to know on the subject. Many of them were unteachable because of their conceit.
That Truth of God which His Son brought to earth can never be extinguished or rendered powerless. Like the leaven Jesus used as a metaphor, it must continue to expand and to work until it has permeated and changed human thought, Truth is omnipotent, and it will prove to be omnipresent. “The earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea,” as we read in Habakkuk 2:14. Evil which pits itself against God is simply ignorance, and the only power of such evil is to destroy itself and disappear. The conflict between Truth and ignorance is the basis of much of the turmoil which we see around us in the world today. But God’s Truth is certain to prevail. The simple, honest, unvarnished Truth is all-Power. God is Truth. “If God be for us, who can be against us?”
Their uncomplicated, faithful and Godly life-style must have been an important contributing factor in the amazing longevity of the Hebrew and Israel patriarchs – perhaps the most important factor. We are assured in Deuteronomy 30:20, “God is thy life, and the length of thy days.” Those are the words of Moses, and he was a living testimony to the truth of that simple, straightforward statement. He lived close to God, he communed with God, he constantly listened for God’s direction. We are told in Deuteronomy 34:7, “And Moses was an hundred and twenty years old when he died: his eye was not dim, nor his natural force abated.”
When we consider the amazing longevity of Moses and so many other Israel and Hebrew patriarchs we must acknowledge that their deep understanding of God, their closeness and obedience to Him, were undoubtedly why they lived such long and productive lives. They knew God as Life, and in clinging obediently to their righteous God they held to Life. It may be a costly mistake of our modern society to forever look for a material cause for every effect. The Bible sets us straight if we will but accept the basic simple Truth that in God we live and move and have our being, for we are also His offspring.
Let us pray that we never lose “that simplicity that is in Christ.”