—How Not to Backslide!—By Father David DFO1089 15/10/81
1. HOW CAN THEY BECOME ALIENATED FROM THE LIFE OF GOD? (Eph.4:18.) It's the Word! When they neglect the Word, they neglect the Lord! How can you become alienated from the life of God? What's the analysis of that Scripture? What's the meaning? How can you become separated from the Lord? It's when you become separated from the Word, because He is the Word. You become separated from the Word, you become separated from the Lord.
2. AND THEN AGAIN YOU BECOME DARKENED IN YOUR UNDERSTANDING BECAUSE YOU HAVE REJECTED THE WORD & you've become separated from the Word, & the Devil sends you lies in its place & you believe the lies instead of the Word. Then finally you just get so hard, terribly hard, till you're just absolutely past feeling. "He that hardeneth his neck after being often reproved shall suddenly be destroyed." (Pr.29:1.)
3. SO REALLY IT IS THE WORD & IT HAS TO DO WITH THE WORD‚ WHETHER YOU LIVE IN THE WORD OR NOT. This is what's wrong with Christians, most Christians & the church Christians that you & I know. They never really read their Bibles daily or anything. They might have pulled a verse from the Promise Box or might have had a little tiny devotion or something‚ but hardly even that, most of them. They depended altogether on Sunday Church services to give them all the Word they needed for the week.
4. WELL‚ IT WAS WORD FOR THE WEAK, ALL RIGHT, & USUALLY PRETTY WEAK WORD! It certainly wasn't enough to last'm all week, like expecting one meal to last you all week! They don't treat their bodies like that, they feed them well three or four times a day, Americans do. It's really when they get separated from the Word that they really go back, when they lose faith in the Word or separated from it, that's when they become alienated from the life of God.
5. WHAT IS THE LIFE OF GOD? HE SAID, "THE WORDS THAT I SPEAK UNTO YOU‚ THEY ARE SPIRIT & THEY ARE LIFE"! (Jn.6:63.) That's the life of God, it's His Word, that's what gives us life & food & nourishment & strength & spiritual health. When they get cut off from the Word it's like cutting off their food, stopping the flow of nourishment. A lot of these backsliders never matured, they were still babes, really, when they were under Jeth & Deborah's ministry, they never got very deep.
6. JETH WAS MORE INTERESTED IN POPULARITY & POWER & MONEY & SO ON & NEVER REALLY NOURISHED THEM WITH THE WORD. He wasn't a bit interested in the Word. The more he could keep them from the Word, the better he liked it, in fact, because that drew them away from him. Well, just like babes, they just starved them to death. They were separated from the milk, taken off the breast & it was malnutrition, they just sort of died of malnutrition of the Word.
7. I'M CONVINCED IT IS THE WORD! "In the beginning was the Word & the Word was God"—the Life of God! (Jn.1:1.) TYL! Hallelujah! That's a good thought, that's the whole idea. What does it mean by "the life of God"? "Alienated from the life of God"? What is the life of God? What is the life-giving flow that gives life from God?—It's the Word! Jeth wasn't interested in the Word & he didn't even publish any more than he had to. God knows whether some of those people ever got all the Letters or not, who knows? Besides, they were too busy with music & making money & whatnot.
8. WHEN THEY NEGLECT THE WORD‚ THEY NEGLECT THE LIFE OF GOD, BECAUSE THAT IS THE LIFE, HE IS THE WORD & THE WORD IS LIFE! "I am the Way, the Truth & the Life!" (Jn.14:6.) "The Words that I speak unto you, they are Spirit & they are Life!" (Jn.6:63.) I wonder how many Scriptures there are about life? That would be an interesting study, wouldn't it? How many can you think of right now? What does it mean by "the life of God"? That's the first step.
9. I WAS TRYING TO THINK, NOW WHAT'S THE FORMULA THEY FOLLOW that finally completely estranges them & makes them go in a complete hard unfeeling backsliding & become that hard as she did? And that verse came to me right away which of course we used in "Backsliders Beware" (No.1045), "darkened in their understanding‚ alienated from the life of God, past feeling". (Eph.4:18, 19.) But what does that mean & how do they get started? What is "alienated from the life of God"? How do they get out of fellowship with the Lord? How do they become separated from His life?
10. IT DOESN'T MEAN THEY'RE NOT SAVED, THEY STILL BELIEVE IN JESUS. I don't know any of them that have gone back from the Lord as far as faith in Christ & His death on the cross & salvation for their sins etc., right? I think they still really believe. I don't know that they've actually denied Jesus. They've stuck up for the Lord even though they themselves were backslidden, & even witnessed to friends that they knew needed the Lord. But they themselves had become separated from fellowship with the Lord. How? It's the Word! They neglect the Word, they get away from the Word.
11. I WONDER HOW MANY MORE SCRIPTURES YOU CAN THINK OF WHICH RELATE THE WORD TO LIFE? (Maria: I am come that ye might have life.") (Jn.10:10.) That's a good one. The Word came that we might have life. How do we get the life? Through the Word—Jesus!—And His Word, both the Word of the past & the Word of the present. Life. I was just thinking of another one when you quoted that one, that links the Word & Life.
12. WELL, EVEN THAT ONE ABOUT "THE SINCERE MILK OF THE WORD". (1Pe.2:2.) There's a picture of a babe who must have the mother's milk to live. Without the Word they will die spiritually. That would be an interesting study if somebody had time to find how many ways could you relate those two words in the Scripture & Scriptural meanings, how that the Word gives life. It says, "The entrance of Thy Word giveth light"‚ it certainly gives life too. (Ps.119:130.)
13. IT'S THE SEED WHICH BRINGS FORTH THE FRUIT OF A NEWBORN BABE IN CHRIST. We sow the Word, what do we reap? We reap souls, new children in the Lord. That sure is life, just like babies. The father sows the seed, the mother nourishes it & brings it to life. The seed is likened to the Word, the Word is likened to the seed. What does the seed do? It brings forth life. Right? (Maria: "Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed thereto according to Thy Word.") (Ps.119:9.) Amen. TYL! But I'm trying to relate particularly the Word & Life. How does the Scripture picture that the Word actually gives life?
14. THE WORD IS THE SEED & THE SEED IS THE WORD! "Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground & die‚ it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit." (Jn.12:24.) In other words, it brings forth life. The seed, the Word, brings forth life. And if they become alienated from the Word they become alienated from life, spiritual life, from the Lord, because He is the Word. They become alienated from His life & His spiritual spark, you might say in a way, that which gives life. The Word is life.
15. THAT SCRIPTURE ALWAYS IMPRESSED ME: "THE WORDS THAT I SPEAK UNTO YOU, THEY ARE SPIRIT & THEY ARE LIFE"! Think of that! They are Spirit & they are Life! They're real things! They're really something. They are Spirit & they are Life. These are things you can't see, you can't touch, but without them everything would be dead, totally dead. And without the Word, those people become completely dead, just dead, without life.
16. SCIENCE STILL DOESN'T UNDERSTAND LIFE. Five minutes after you're dead you're still all there physically, materially, everything's there—but something's gone that they can't see or feel & which has no weight. They've weighed bodies right after they died to see if there was a difference in weight & all that kind of stuff, & it makes no difference in weight. There's just some spark there‚ there's some electricity there, there's some life there, there's some spirit there that is gone which gave that body life. The Spirit & the Life. And without the Word, which is the Spirit & the Life of Jesus, they're without Him, without His fellowship, without the Word.
17. I'M CONVINCED IT'S BECAUSE THEY GET AWAY FROM THE WORD. If they live in the Word‚ I don't think they'd ever get away, they couldn't get away, because they'd get so full of the Word. That's why our children are so spiritual, we just baptise them & fill them with the Word! My first family just lived in the Word, memorised the Word‚ & all the first disciples, that was our main thing was memorisation & study of the Word, just get full of the Word so you can't get away from it. Because "the Words that I speak unto you, they are Spirit & they are life."
18. JESUS IS THE WORD, HE IS THE SPIRIT & THE LIFE‚ & YOU HAVE TO HAVE A DOSE OF HIM EVERYDAY, really, & have a good feeding & feasting & drinking. Just like you have to eat in order to have physical strength, you have to eat of the Word‚ drink of the Word to have spiritual strength. And I think that's how they get so alienated from the life of God they neglect the Word, they get away from the Word. "Without me ye are nothing." (Jn.15:5.) They get away from the Lord. They don't lose their salvation but they "follow afar off" like Peter (Mt.26:58), to the point where they could even deny Him, like Peter.
19. I THINK THAT'S THE SECRET. I've been trying to think, what starts these people on the road back? What is it that causes them to cool off? "The love of many waxes cold", the fire dies, the flame dies down, they cool off, they turn cold. What feeds the fire? What feeds the flame? It's the fuel. And what's the fuel? It's the Word, right? Its the Word that feeds the candle, that feeds the fire! It's the fuel, the life that's in that fuel, whether it be candle wax or gasoline or oil or whatever it is, even electricity, it's that fuel that fires the flame.
20. AND WHEN THEY RUN OUT OF FUEL, LIKE THE FIVE FOOLISH VIRGINS RAN OUT OF OIL, THE FIRE GOES OUT, the light goes out‚ & they wind up in darkness, alienated from the life of God, the fuel, the Word‚ the Spirit. "Alienated from the life of God." What is the life of God?—The Word, the Spirit, the Life. Alienated from it they become dark, darkened in their understanding. The fuel runs out because they haven't fed the fire with the Word, which is Jesus, Spirit‚ Life, all of these things are the Word.
21. AND THE WORD IS ALL OF THESE THINGS: THE WORD IS JESUS, THE WORD IS GOD, THE WORD IS SPIRIT, THE WORD IS LIFE! And without Jesus you're without God, you're without Spirit, you're without Life, you're dead! The flame goes out, just like when it runs out of oil or fuel. The fire goes out, there's no heat, grows cold, past feeling. Dark, cold. See? I mean, it's an invariable pattern. But it all sort of sums the whole thing up in one little formula. "Alienated from the life of God." What does alienated mean? Separated.
22. THEY BECOME LIKE AN ALIEN TO THE KINGDOM OF GOD‚ they're a foreigner‚ they're a stranger. They're still a member of the Kingdom, they're still a child of God, they're still a son of God, but they're a Prodigal Son in a very far country & a stranger to their own family, their own home‚ their own country, the Kingdom of God. They become alienated from the Family, right?
23. I WAS REALLY THINKING, WHAT COULD CAUSE A GIRL LIKE THAT & PEOPLE LIKE AMMINIDAB & SOME OF THOSE PEOPLE, SO MANY OF THEM TO BACKSLIDE?—Particularly in Jethro & Deborah & Rachel's areas. How come they so easily backslid & got away? See, they had their eyes on people. They had their eyes on the system. They had their eyes on the Chain. They had their eyes on the method‚ you might say, communal living, all that big Blob fellowship & the togetherness & the system & the method & the way of living & that sort of thing instead of their eyes on Jesus & the Word & on the Word of God & even His mouthpiece.
24. THAT'S THE SECRET! THAT'S REALLY THE SECRET! I've been sitting here really wondering how can they do it? How can they get so far away, so cold, so dark, so hard, so past feeling? I mean, this is brought out in "Backsliders Beware"‚ but I dont know if we really got the answer right there, but it just came to me so strong. That Scripture came back to me first: "Darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God, past feeling." How do they get separated from God? How do they get alienated from God & from His life? How could they become strangers, aliens to His life & even His way of living?
25. AND IT'S SO CLEAR, THE FIRST STEP CAME: WELL, THEY BECOME DARKENED IN THEIR UNDERSTANDING. And the only way you can get darkened in your understanding is by resisting the Spirit‚ rejecting the Word & being filled with the lies of the Devil! Because they had no love of the Truth & they rejected the Word of God, the Lord sent them strong delusion that they might be damned‚ judged. (2Th.2:10-12.) Even killed! In a lot of cases the backsliders are killed, it gets them out of the way.
26. I'M SORRY, BUT I'VE GOT TO KEEP DRINKING MY COFFEE OTHERWISE I GET EMPTY! That's a good illustration! I don't eat much all day, this is my first meal of the day, & if I don't drink my nourishment in the morning I hardly have strength to carry on for the day. With all the work I do, it lasts me anywhere from six to eight hours, one big cup of coffee. Because of the milk in it & the honey in it & the egg in it, it's a nourishing meal that gives me life & strength. It's my nourishment, my food.
27. FOOD FOR THE SOUL IS IMPORTANT TOO & YOU'VE GOT TO FEED IT OR YOUR SOUL IS GOING TO DIE! Your spirit, even your physical life will die without it. You have got to keep feeding yourself spiritually, or be fed spiritually like a baby. A lot of people never grow up spiritually, they stay babes because they weren't really fed. Jeth & Deb weren't interested in feeding'm, all they were interested in was what kind of Letters made good money‚ what could be put on the street to raise money, raise funds. They just worked them to death where they had no time for the Word. Or they worked them to death on the music, everyone was just interested in the music.
28. THEY WANTED POPULARITY & FAME! They wanted the accolade of the System. They wanted to be big & famous & get on the radio & TV & albums. Oh my, how they used to thrill over it if they got the slightest little bit of recognition from the System! They really went in for it & God gave it to them. That's what they wanted, that's what He gave to them, but He sent leanness to their souls. "He gave them the desire of their hearts but He sent leanness to their souls." (Ps.106:15.) Because they neglected the Word. They neglected the Word & they really neglected the Lord.
29. AND HOW SAD IT MAKES ME FEEL WHEN PEOPLE NEGLECT THE WORD, the way Jeth & Deb used to do‚ how they were reluctant to even read the Letters to the Camp at TSC. One Letter was so hot that Jeth delayed it for two weeks after he got it! I wrote & wanted to know what was the reaction etc., & he hadn't even read it to them yet! He said, "Dad, I thought it was a bit too strong for them", blah blah blah blah! "Listen‚" I said‚ "you go ahead & read it or else!" And from then on I always sent a couple other copies to a couple other people there to make sure that they all got it & he didn't hide the light under a bushel & hide the Word & try to withhold it from the people.
30. HE NEVER LIKED THE WORD, HE NEVER DID, NEVER! HE ALWAYS DREADED THE LETTERS. His interest was not the Letters, his main interest was as Judas, he held the bag, the money, & power & popularity were next. That's the only reason he ever stuck with his job, because it was a job in which he had position & he had money, & was a king & a leader. But he didn't like the Prophet & he didn't like what he prophesied & he didn't like the Word.
31. HE WASN'T A BIT INTERESTED IN GIVING THE WORD TO THE PEOPLE‚ so in areas where he predominated & he ruled & where he really ran things & his influence was supreme, the more he could get'm away from the Prophet & the Word, the better he liked it. He never pushed either me or the Word, all he pushed was his system & the way of life. But you can't have that way of life & living without the Life that makes it live. You just can't do it‚ that's all!
32. YOU'VE GOT TO HAVE THE LIFE OR THE WAY OF LIFE WILL DIE! You've got to have the Life to live or there's no such way of living, & look how they died out. See? He didn't found'm on the Word. He didn't really nourish them with the Word. Deborah was a lot more interested in teaching her stuff about childcare & baby birth & pregnant mothers & all that kind of stuff than she really was in the Word.
33. AND THEN THE CRUNCH CAME & THE GOING GOT ROUGH & THEIR SYSTEM FOLDED & COLLAPSED & the Chain-Saul was done away with—like Israel of old when Saul got killed & Israel seemed to be defeated completely—which God had to do to get Saul & his crowd out of the way. He said, "Every man to his tents, O Israel!"—& they all went home, they all backslid. They didn't fight anymore, there was no more army, no more nothing! The kingdom just totally disintegrated & the Enemy won, they deserted just because they lost that battle.
34. AND THE REASON THEY LOST THAT BATTLE WAS BECAUSE THEY DIDN'T WAIT FOR THE WORD! They didn't wait for the Prophet of God & get the Word of God to go out & fight. They tried to fight in their own strength without the Lord, without the Prophet & without the Word of God!—And without His blessings, without Him making the offering & the sacrifice & showing His blessing & His approval.
35. SAUL WENT AHEAD IN HIS OWN STRENGTH JUST LIKE JETH DID SO MUCH & RACHEL TOO. He thought he could go ahead, he was a king & he was big & strong, head & shoulders above his brethren, he could go ahead & fight it without God, without the Word, without the blessing of God. Well, he tried to get the blessing of God, he went ahead & sacrificed and made the offering himself on the altar and asked God to bless‚ he went through the motions, but it was lifeless‚ there was nothing there.
36. WITHOUT THE PROPHET OF GOD THERE WAS NO WORD, THERE WAS NO GOD, THERE WAS NO LIFE‚ THERE WAS NO FIRE, THERE WAS NOTHING!—And they went out & tried to fight the battle against the Enemy & fell flat on their faces! Saul & all of his sons were killed & decapitated & humiliated & the army was totally defeated & deserted & every man went home to his tent. They all backslid, the whole army!—To clear out the rubbish & the rubble & the chaff that had been trained under Saul & who were like Saul, not really looking to the Lord & the Prophet & His Word, but depending on their own strength like Saul did, trying to do it in his own strength.
37. IT WAS SO RIDICULOUS, SO FOOLISH, HE WAS DOOMED TO DEFEAT! He couldn't have done anything else, he was programmed for defeat. Because the minute you neglect the Lord & His Word & the Words of His Prophet, you are programmed to self-destruct! You're geared for it, keyed to it‚ wired for it, it becomes automatic. Doomsday was bound to come, & it came! And the only way that God could revive the nation was to raise up David, the little lad who became a warrior‚ strong leader in the Kingdom‚ rival to the king himself.
38. BUT THE DIFFERENCE WAS, DAVID HAD THE WORD, HE REALLY LOVED THE LORD! He stuck close to the Spirit of God & the love of the Spirit & had the Word of God, he was a prophet of God. David was first & foremost & above all a Prophet of God who received marvellous beautiful prophecies from the Lord. I mean, the whole Book of Psalms is virtually all prophecy.
39. DAVID IN A SENSE BECAME THE WORD FOR THE NATION. The nation was virtually dead when David came along, Saul had killed it by separating it from the Word, from the Prophet of God, from Samuel, from David. Saul cut off all his possible avenues of escape, all of his possible helpers who could have possibly revived him, so finally God just had to cut him off, like we had to cut Jethro off, & Rachel.
40. WHEN THEY REFUSE TO OBEY THE PROPHET, REFUSE TO LISTEN TO THE WORD, REFUSE REALLY TO FOLLOW THE LORD & THE FAMILY, GOD HAS TO CUT'M OFF‚ TOTALLY EXCOMMUNICATE'M! In some cases He took their lives like He did Saul's, completely‚ just cut'm off! Got the old weeds out of the way & cleared away the ruble & all their followers & all their admirers & worshippers & hangers-on. I'll bet if you'd trace it back you'd find out most of those people who backslid were in their area, trained under them, influenced by them. There were so many people, almost everybody, all the leadership.
41. I WAS OUT OF DIRECT CONTACT WITH THEM, ALL I WAS GIVING WAS THE WORD, BUT THE PEOPLE NEGLECTED THE WORD & FOLLOWED THEM. They followed the people they could see, the example they saw before them. They followed them & their word instead of the Word of God. So when they collapsed & their word ceased, their followers collapsed & failed & fell & were defeated & went home, backslid. All because they hadn't grounded them in the Word most of all. The only ones who survived were really a lot of little people who nobody ever heard of before, who were smothered & squelched & beat down by those Saulites because they weren't worshippers of them.
42. THEY WERE LOYAL ENOUGH TO BELIEVE THE PROPHET OF GOD & TO STUDY HIS WORD & LIVE IN THE LETTERS, & as far as the Saulites were concerned, anybody like that was a traitor to them, that's the way Jethro considered them, Anybody who loved Dad & followed the Prophet & put more stock in his Word than anybody else were not loyal to Jethro or Deborah or Rachel, & they considered them traitors! I mean, they really pushed'm around‚ shoved'm down, beat'm down & threw'm out!—Just like Saul did to followers of David.
43. DAVID COLLECTED HIS ARMY FROM THE OUTCASTS OF SAUL!—The people that Saul kicked out because they loved David or were loyal to David‚ to follow the Lord. Saul got rid of all the good people, all the spiritual people, all the lovers of the Lord & the believers in David‚ the followers of David & in his word, he threw'm out as traitors! Subversives! And so they collected out in the wilderness in the Cave of Adullam & became like outcasts.
44. WE WERE ANATHEMA TO THE REST OF THE LEADERSHIP FOR AWHILE, ESPECIALLY WHEN WE LOWERED THE BOOM ON'M WITH THE RNR & we really sliced up the Chain, destroyed it. They had nothing then to lean on, nothing more to depend on or hang onto because they didn't have those Chain-Saul leaders anymore to depend on, because they got offended‚ most of them, & went back‚ right? The ones that Deborah & Jeth & Rachel had trained, when we just abolished all the leadership, they felt like they were fired & thrown out‚ 300 of'm! And so a lot of'm just quit & went home, we didn't keep an awful lot of them, just like Saul's army.
45. JUST LIKE WHEN DAVID CAME BACK, HE HAD TO HAVE A REAL HOUSE CLEANING OF THE BENJAMITES & GET RID OF A LOT OF'M. If they wouldn't declare their loyalty to him & join his army, they were cut off! And it all happened because of their failure to give pre-eminence to the Word & to put it first, & that loyalty to the Lord was loyalty to David His King, His Prophet & His Word. And when they didn't teach'm that—but that the Kingdom was some kind of an association or a way of living, some kind of a communal system only under their leadership—they had nothing. They didn't have the strength, the life‚ the power, the light, the Spirit, nothing to keep'm going or alive or strong enough to defeat the Enemy without the Word. So that's how it happened.
46. I'LL TELL YOU, IT'S DANGEROUS TO NEGLECT THE WORD! The minute you start crowding the Word out of your lives, you are getting too busy! Or you lose confidence in the Word because of your own double-mindedness & double–heartedness because it offends you & you don't like it, or something we say, or FFing, or whatever. Boy, that was the acid test was the FFing, that really divided the men from the boys & the girls from the women!
47. GOD GIVES TESTS LIKE THAT! Remember the test He gave Abraham? He gave His Word to Abraham, go sacrifice Isaac. Boy, was that a test! He was the promised seed, the promised son, the miracle son. God wanted to see if he'd still believe Him, put His Word above his son, even above the fulfilment of the Word‚ put the Word even above the effects of the Word.
48. SOME PEOPLE JUST WORSHIP THE EFFECTS OF THE WORD: "Oh, look at all these people! Look at all this Family! Look at all this wonderful communal living! Look at all this way of life! Look at these wonderful kids!" This is the way Jethro used to do. He'd say, "You shouldn't have so much publicity about Dad & his Letters‚ why don't we say more about what the kids are & what they do" etc. He actually said it! "We need to publish more about the kids & what they're doing." Well, maybe we do, but what he meant was he really wanted to get rid of the Letters & get rid of Dad & dump the old dummy & extol the army instead & just the players & the effects of the Word, the fruit of the Word.
49. YOU CAN'T EVEN PUT THE FRUIT OF THE WORD ABOVE THE WORD ITSELF. Without the seed there never would have been new life, there never would have been fruit. Without the sap the tree dies. I mean, there it is again, over & over again, the Word, the Word, the Word, the Word! "Without Me ye are nothing", Jesus said, & He was the Word. Without the Word there's nothing. Without the Word there is no Spirit‚ no life, no power, no light, no heat, no warmth, no fruit, no nothing!—And they're totally defeated at the first attack of the Enemy just like Saul was. (See "The Tree"—No.319)
50. THE ONLY ONES WHO SURVIVED WERE OUTCASTS OUT IN THE WILDERNESS IN THE CAVE OF ADULLAM WITH DAVID, & God knows they were few & far between in those days! I mean, our population took a nosedive, our finances took a nosedive, our Homes took a nosedive, our backsliders took a nosedive back home & it looked like we were almost going to crash! We had to cut our budget, remember? Slice everywhere & cut off everybody we could do without. It looked like we were defeated. Who were we? Some of'm hardly ever even heard about us! Some of them lived weeks in our Colonies & our Homes & never even knew I existed, never heard about us. Hardly ever read a Letter.
51. WHAT WERE THEY LIVING ON? THEY WERE LIVING ON THE EFFECTS OF THE WORD, fruit of the Word‚ the effect of the Word, of the System it had created, of the fruit it had, the people & the way of living & life & all of this sort of thing‚ the fellowship & all these big Blobs they had & all. Oh my, they loved that fellowship, but it dies without the Word. There's nothing cohesive to hold it together without the Word.
52. WHEN THE WORD WAS GONE, WHEN SAMUEL THE PROPHET WAS GONE‚ THE ARMY WAS DEFEATED, the nation fell apart, & the only ones who survived were David & his little band out in the Cave of Adullam in the wilderness.—And they had years of work ahead to try to make a come-back & get the country together again & re–establish the true leadership & the true king, David. The Lord had to cut off Saul, kill him & his sons & his followers & purge the whole nation of the whole Chain of Saul & get rid of them all, all those that wouldn't follow David. And David had to actually go into the land of the enemies for awhile‚ a couple of years, before he made a comeback & finally came back & tried to pick up the pieces—just like we did, exactly!
53. WE JUST BLEW THE THING APART WITH THE RNR! IT WAS A TIME OF TESTING, OF SIFTING, DIVIDING THE MEN FROM THE BOYS! In other words, who's going to follow me & who's going to follow them? That was the thing. And their followers, because the leadership then failed, they failed‚ & they went back, backslid & fell away. Fell away. "There shall come a falling away first." (2Th.2:3.) Because "the love of many waxes cold." (Mt.24:12.) Why? Because they don't love the right thing or the right one, they didn't really love the Word.
54. THEY WEREN'T REALLY FOLLOWERS OF THE LORD, THEY WERE FOLLOWERS OF MEN & WOMEN, Rachel & Deb & Jethro & some of them. And they weren't following God & His Word‚ which in this case was me, David in the Cave of Adullam. And we just went down to where we just had a little band in the Cave of Adullam virtually in the wilderness when all that high-powered high-pressured leadership was swept away with the broom of the RNR. I mean, our whole leadership structure was swept away, it just collapsed!
55. I SAID, "FROM NOW ON YOU'RE GOING TO FOLLOW ME & THE LETTERS & NOBODY ELSE! There's going to be no other leadership!"—And we went that way for 3-1/2 years. That's what it took to purge them & purify us and sweep out the old Chain–Saul leadership & all those who preferred to follow somebody else instead of me & the Letters, & all those that were trained by them.
56. SO IT ALL BOILS DOWN AGAIN TO THE WORD EVERY TIME. Why do they backslide? Why do they become darkened in their understanding? Alienated from the life of God? Past feeling? How did it all get started, as I was thinking about this girl this morning who used to be so prominent under the Chain & was so glorified, evidently by them‚ & her songs & her singing & her performances & she was a great thing, aggrandised & promoted & glorified, & apparently that's what she wanted. But she obviously didn't know me very well, & apparently when the Chain collapsed, she was swept away with them & their leadership, the Benjamites‚ the Saulites.
57. GOD HAD TO GET RID OF THOSE WHO DEPENDED ON THE ARM OF FLESH & ON THEIR KIND OF LEADERSHIP, THEIR WORDLESS LEADERSHIP. He had to get rid of them‚ it was just rubbish in the way, He had to clear it away like the father in the story of "Alice & the Magic Garden". (No.290.) I'll tell you, that dream has tremendous meaning the more you think about it! The father had to come & clear away the weeds & the rubbish & all that false leadership & leadership that wasn't depending on the Lord & His Words & following us & the Letters. He had to sweep them all away, burn'm out so the new young leaders could arise like the beautiful lilies!
58. OH, I WISH I COULD HAVE PICTURED THAT SOME WAY THEY COULD REALLY SEE IT! I hope they did! I hope the Lord livened their imagination, inspired it to see it as I saw it‚ those beautiful pure young lilies coming up in the garden & out of the ashes of the old. And we never dreamed that that was also a picture of what happened later in the RNR. That's really what happened! And look how Deborah has been bewitched & bedeviled & enchanted by the Evil Magician till she's totally separated from us & Word! But she doesn't even feel it, she doesn't even miss it, because she never had a love for it in the first place. She never respected me to begin with.
59. SO YOU JUST WONDER HOW THEY COULD POSSIBLY GO BACK? How they could possibly have failed & gone back? Because they weren't really followers of the Word, they didn't build their house on the Word, they had the wrong foundation. In fact, they didn't have a foundation, just sand. The Saul leadership was like sand. And when the storm came it fell because it wasn't built on the Rock. And who's the Rock?—Jesus! And what is He?—The Word! PTL! He's the Word, & if they don't follow the Word they've got no foundation. And His Prophet is the conveyer of the Word & speaker of the Word, therefore if they don't follow the Prophet they're not following the Word. If they're not following the Word, they're not following God, therefore they don't have a foundation, because Jesus is the Word. They're not on the Rock so they fall.
60. I'LL BET YOU'LL FIND EVERY ONE OF THOSE BACKSLIDERS WERE WEAK IN THE WORD, DIDN'T REALLY LIVE IN THE WORD. And I'll bet you'll find every single one of our strongest leaders today are those who really live in the Word & know the Word & know the Letters, like Apollos & so many others, so strong‚ because they really have faith in the Word & live in the Word! Therefore they have faith in the Word-giver, the Worder, & they follow, & they obey! TYL! But I'll bet you'll find every single one of the backsliders were weak in the Word, didn't really love the Word, therefore they didn't love the Worder, the Prophet.
61. IF THEY'RE NOT FOLLOWERS OF THE WORD, THEY CAN'T BE FOLLOWERS OF THE PROPHET, & if they're not followers of God's Prophet, they're not followers of God!—They may be saved but they're not following. I bet you'd find by their own confession, every one of them‚ they weren't living in the Word everyday, really studying the Word, following the Word, obeying the Word‚ having faith in the Word, doing what the Word says. Because the ones that tried to got put down & put out by the Saulites & considered heretics & traitors & everything else because they didn't follow their word instead of my Word!
62. I'LL BET YOU EVERY ONE OF THOSE BACKSLIDERS WERE WEAK IN THE WORD OR HAD LITTLE OR NO WORD, were not really steeped in the Word, not filled with the Word, not really students of the Word or really living in the Word. But the ones who did & were survived & they're still with us today! TYL! It seems like they were few & far between in leadership‚ & we still have a hard time finding enough of'm.
63. SO THAT'S THE SECRET—THE WORD!—THE SECRET OF POWER & VICTORY & OVERCOMING & FRUITFULNESS & FIRE & LIFE & WARMTH & LIGHT & LEADERSHIP, EVERYTHING, IS THE WORD!—And the lack of it is the secret of backsliding & failure & coldness & darkness & weakness & dying spiritually without the Word. Because they've never had it emphasised & never really put it foremost. It was not pre-eminent in the Saul system, in Deb & Jethro & Rachel's system. They didn't really love & worship the Word.
64. THERE'S NOTHING WRONG WITH WORSHIPPING THE WORD, THE WORD IS JESUS! The Word is God! The Word is Life! They're His Words, they're not my Words. I'm just a channel, a mouthpiece God uses to speak'm. I'm so surprised when I hear some of the things I said, so I know they're not mine, the Lord said'm! I'm amazed at some of these things, listening to Daily Might tapes. They're thrilling, they're marvellous, they're exciting, they're supernatural, inspiring! They're terrific! They give life, Spirit, inspiration! And I can hardly believe they ever came through me or my mouth! I just don't even remember a lot of it‚ so I know it was the Lord.
65. THE WORD IS THE LORD, THE LORD IS THE WORD, SO THERE'S NOTHING WRONG WITH WORSHIPPING THE WORD or loving the Word & living in the Word, because Jesus is the Word. He said‚ "The Words that I speak unto you‚ they are Spirit & they are Life." (Jn.6:63.) "I am the Way, the Truth"—there's the Word again—"& the Life." (Jn.14:6.) Jesus is the Word, & the Word is Jesus‚ & if you don't keep feeding on it & absorbing His life—"Eat of Me", as He said, "drink of My blood & eat of My flesh" (Jn.6:53-58.)—you'll never survive spiritually. You will backslide like the rest of them.
66. SO THERE IT IS, THAT'S THE SECRET OF WHY THEY BACKSLID. They got away from the Word first of all, & when they got away from the Word they became darkened in their understanding‚ & then they became alienated from the life of God, which is the Word, because they rejected the Word. That's the equivalent to rejecting the Word, if you don't love it, then you don't like it & you don't believe in it. Like we used to say, you believe the Bible as much as you read it. You believe the Letters as much as you read them & live in them & practice them & obey them, because it's the Word of God. And they didn't.
67. SO THEY GOT WEAK SPIRITUALLY, THEY LOST THE LIFE OF GOD, THE LIFE-GIVING FLOW. They didn't drink it, eat it, live in it, be strengthened by it‚ & so they became dark in their understanding, they couldn't even understand anymore. Think of that! Isn't that pitiful? Couldn't even understand anymore! And filled with the Word & Gods Truth, or youre going to be filed with the lies of the Devil. You've got to have one or the other. You're either going to be filled with the lies of the Devil & darkness!
68. AND THEY FINALLY JUST GREW SO COLD THEY BECAME PAST FEELING, THEY DIDN'T EVEN FEEL IT ANYMORE! Their consciences were hardened & their hearts were hardened. Oh, it's a dangerous place to be! Because "he that being often reproved & hardeneth his neck shall suddenly be destroyed & that without remedy!" (Pr.29:1.) Because God cannot tolerate those people to even live! Think of it! Because they're too bad a testimony & have too bad an influence.
69. THEY ARE ALMOST A WITNESS AGAINST HIM BY THEIR LIVES‚ EVEN IF THEY CLAIM TO BELIEVE IN HIM. If they're not following His Word & obeying His Word, no matter how much they claim that they remember it, "Be ye not only hearers of the Word but doers also"! (Ja.1:22.) They've got to not only read it & hear it & say amen‚ but they've got to obey it! They've got to do it to prove their allegiance & their loyalty & their faith in it & their belief in it & their fidelity to it. They have got to do it!
70. "BE YE NOT ONLY HEARERS OF THE WORD BUT DOERS ALSO", otherwise you're like the man who built his house on the sand, & when the tough times come it will be destroyed. And when the winds of adversity blew, the RNR hit'm, if they weren't loyal to just God & His Word & His Prophet, they fell. They built their foundation on the sand, they had no foundation on the Rock of His Word & they fell. It's sad, it's pitiful!
71. SOME OF THEM PROBABLY WILL HEAR THIS & THINK, "WELL, IT'S HARD TO BELIEVE THAT JUST A LITTLE THING LIKE NEGLECTING THE WORD COULD CAUSE SUCH A THING. "See, they count that as a little thing: "Oh well, it's not too important if I don't read the Bible or if I don't read the Letters. It's not important as long as I follow the crowd & go along with everything, as long as I get out & litness. Even if I don't read it myself, at least I give them to others."—Oh no, that'll not spare you!—Only the Word!
72. SO THAT'S THE SECRET!—IT'S THE SECRET OF VICTORY OR DEFEAT! Its the secret of success or failure! It all depends on how they treat the Word & how they live in it & live on it or try to go without it, that's the secret. And I'll bet you anything that every one of these backsliders would testify that their failure & their defeat & their fall was neglect of the Word, lack of confidence in the Word, doubt about the Word, disobedience to the Word, forsaking the Word, & finally they forsook all.
73. BACKSLIDERS FORSAKE-ALL TOO, THEY FORSAKE THE WORD, THE LORD, THE LIFE, THE LIGHT‚ THE PROPHET, THE FAMILY & they backslide & go back & forsake it all, forsake the house of the Father, forsake it all! They forsake it all in the wrong direction just as much as they had once forsaken all to follow the Lord. They desert the plow on the field & they look back & they're totally defeated‚ they go back & forsake it all. They go back to the slimepit & the hogpen & the vomit & the filth, the mud & the mire of the System. They forsake all the Lord had to give'm & all that we had given them, they forsake it all & go back to the beggarly filthy elements of this World.
74. THEY BECOME BEGGARS IN THE SIGHT OF GOD! They become poverty-stricken spiritually & totally out of it. And it's so hard for them to get back, it's really hard! It's much harder than the first time. And they've gotten themselves so involved & entrenched in the System & in bondage to the System that it's almost impossible to break loose. And having once had a taste of all these things, as it says in Hebrews‚ it seems almost impossible that they should even repent, some of them, having once rejected it—had it, but turned against it & rejected it—it's even harder for them to come back the second time. (He.6:4-6.)
75. LORD HELP US, & LORD HELP THEM, IN JESUS' NAME! Help those poor backsliders, Lord‚ it's so hard for them. They're so weak because they're so weak in the Word, they haven't really been really strengthened by the Word & really indoctrinated with the Word & filled with the Word, baptised with the Word. They haven't lived on the Word, drunk the Word, feasted on the Word‚ lived in the Word. The Word has not been their life & strength & health as it was to king David, as he talks so much about the Word. That's where he got his strength & his life & his wisdom & his power & his victory.
76. THEY WERE ALWAYS WEAK IN THE MOST IMPORTANT AREA OF THEIR WHOLE CHRISTIAN LIFE, THEY NEGLECTED THE WORD! This is what's wrong with the church, Lord, they've neglected the Word. They're starved for the Word. They get a few little crumbs on Sunday & starve the rest of the week. The church & Christians have gotten weaker & weaker until they're defeated by the World, grown weaker & weaker all the time, putting their money into bags that have holes inm (Hag.1:6), & their crops into the barns that are worth nothing, because they have neglected the Life, the light, the strength, the power, the only hope of victory, & that's Thy Word!
77. JESUS, HELP OUR PEOPLE, HELP OUR FAMILY, HELP OUR CHILDREN, LORD, EVEN HELP OUR BACKSLIDERS SOMEHOW TO GET BACK TO THE WORD! You sometimes let them go back to the pit, Lord, back to the slimepit & the hogpen & the wallow in the mire & the vomit just to sicken them to see that that is not where it's at. There may be a lot of things about the Family they didn't like‚ but it's certainly not as bad as that, at least the Family is better than that. So that anything would taste good after that, & they realise that they've really gotten out of Thy will & away from Thee & out of fellowship, alienated from Thy life, darkened in their minds‚ so hardened in their hearts. O Jesus, help them, Lord, help them in Jesus' name!
78. WE FEEL LIKE THIS IS THEIR LAST CHANCE, YOU'RE GIVING THEM LIKE A LAST CALL‚ A FINAL CALL, particularly those old backsliders there in the U.S.A. especially. There are backsliders all over the World, Lord, Europe, North America, South America, there are so many who followed the people & the leadership of Saul instead of the Words of David. There's so many, Lord, & we feel like You're certainly giving them their last chance, especially those in Europe & North America which are going to be destroyed one of these days soon!
79. YOU'RE BEGGING THEM TO COME BACK! "BEHOLD, I AM MARRIED TO THE BACKSLIDER"! (Jer.3:14.) "He that cometh unto Me I will in no wise cast out." (Jn.6:37.) You plead with them, beg them! You wept over Jerusalem. You said, "How often would I have gathered thee as a hen doth gather her chicks‚ but ye would not!" (Mt.23:37.) You wept over Jerusalem knowing how she was going to be destroyed in just a few years, her whole population decimated, crucified‚ as You were. So that their end was worse than the beginning.
80. O JESUS, HAVE MERCY ON THOSE BACKSLIDERS! You are having mercy now with this very message that we're giving, pleading with them to come back to Thee, to Thy Word‚ even Thy Prophet & Thy Family. Help them, Lord, in Jesus' name to hear & to believe‚ to hear & to do. Not just hear & say, "Yes, we hear it, I like the Letters, I like Dad‚ but now I am back & I'm too busy." Lord God! Shake'm up! Wakem up! Jolt them out of their lethargy & their blindness & the entrancement of the System, hypnotised zombies by the Devil because they've lost the light of Thy Word! In Jesus name, somehow get through to them & help them to repent & turn. "Turn, O ye backsliding Israel", the prophet said, "O ye backsliding daughter!" He begged & begged Israel to repent for years, tried to get her to come back to You before You finally had to destroy her, destroy Jerusalem.
81. LORD GOD, HELP THEM SOMEHOW TO COME BACK TO THEE, TO TURN & REPENT‚ HAVE A METANOIA, CHANGE OF MIND, & REALLY COME BACK! This time‚ Lord, knowing that there's no place else to go. "Thou alone hast the Words of Eternal Life!" (Jn.6:68.) To whom shall they go? They found out there's nobody else to go to, nothing else to go to but to come back to You & Your Family, Your Word & Your Worder, in Jesus' name. Bring them back, Lord‚ in Jesus' name, have mercy! Have mercy & bring them back to Thy Word, in Jesus' name, amen.—Are you coming NOW? Tomorrow will be too late! GHU!