CONT., page 11
TURNING THE HEARTS
Now for an account regarding Joab that was not listed among the five subject accounts. As you will see, this is a most important point that is appropriately presented here at the end of this writing. Thus far we have of necessity looked at this conflict between law and mercy, between Joab and David. But we know from the writing, The Conflict, and have seen here as well, that this conflict cannot and should not and even will not be continual. Here we consider what must take place for this necessary change.
Correction is in fact the byproduct of transgression. Thus far in our consideration of Joab, one might think that his intentions toward David were continually to be "too difficult" or in a state of conflict. But this is not the case, and we will look at a most revealing account that evidences this. Once again, Yahweh has a teaching for us here that is so amazing that only He could design it. Indeed He has done so, and we will be wise to see this and to seek Him for His Spirit to carry out this truth in our lives for the good. We are to walk by the Spirit and not carry out the desires of the flesh. Even when we are not able to carry out these things, it is important to confess this weakness and ask Him to make us able, to perform these things in our lives for us for the good. There have been many times I have had to present myself before Yahweh for His mercy and to keep me in His ways. We are all but mere men, and we must trust wholly in Him for His life to come forth through us.
Before we look at this important account and the truth that Yahweh has for us in it, please allow me to make a few important relevant comments regarding my heart towards my family.
I have five children. Up to now you have read about the three older - Christi, Rebekah, and Micah. I also have two younger children - Katheryn and Grace. At the time of this writing, Katheryn is 14 and Grace is 10. I can tell you that as with Micah, these two girls are a great delight to me! They love their father very much (truly, all my children love me), and that love, along with, most importantly, their obedience and honor to me, often satisfies my hungry soul, yes satisfies my hungry soul. They are a delight to their father!
My desire for all my children is for their good, and this is the very reason I must maintain the necessary Joab correction element when I must. Likewise, instilled within me, residing at the very core of my being, is a hope and desire that my children will not depart from my ways. When I began walking with Yahshua in 1971, though I did not have any children at the time, my first unforgettable longing was this hope. The source of this motivation at the time was that I had seen my relatives on my father's side raise their children in church (I was not raised that way), and later they forsook their upbringing. I did not and do not want this for my children.
My grandfather on my mother's side was an alcoholic, and my grandmother divorced him when their children were small. He later overcame his alcoholism; but nonetheless, the resulting damage to his family was already done. At the end of his life, he lay in bed for over a month in a coma. Then one day he came out of the coma, sat straight up in bed, and said - "I had five children and lost them all!" He then laid down and died. Those were his last words, maybe his last thoughts, and most certainly his final testimony.
There have been times in the darkest moments of my life when Satan has told me this same thing - "You are going to lose your five children, just like Grandpa." But my hope in Yahweh is that I will not lose one of them. Many years ago, Mavis and I knelt down by our bed, and with tears I committed myself to Yahweh. Seeing my own propensity to fail and to do wrong, yet earnestly desiring for Him to have His way and will in my life, I gave Him the right to do whatever He had to do in order to get me to the place where He wanted me to be, and added the very worst tragedy I could think of - even if it meant taking my wife and children. Yahweh then spoke to my heart that He gave my family back to me.
Several years later, I was sitting in my bedroom and looked into the next room to see young Rebekah playing on the floor. We were going through a financial test at the time, and fear struck me that I could lose the home, and my daughter might be put out on the street. Yahweh then spoke to me and said - "Did you not give your children to Me?" I told Him, yes. "Then I am able to take care of them," was His reply. I did not lose our home; and my trust then and my trust now is that I have given my children to Yahweh, and He will take care of them.
This trust has been a focal and assuring truth in those times when I have had to be a difficult Joab to my children. I love my children too much to do my own will regarding them, or to shrink back in my responsibility as a father. Therefore I seek to do only the will of the Father toward them, to walk in His ways, and to leave the results to Him, especially when I face the fear of losing them when I must take a difficult position. My intentions are nothing but good for them, even when I must be a "too difficult" Joab.
But in truth, Joab's intentions were obviously good for David. In each case we have seen that Joab's actions were best for David and his kingdom, though David never seemed to recognize this or learn from it (which, as I have learned, is quite painful for the Joab, and places a great deal of responsibility and even pressure on him). In this next account we are going to see the heart and intentions Joab had for David. We will be reading from 2 Samuel 12:26f.
Joab had gone out and "fought against Rabbah of the sons of Ammon, and captured the royal city." But after bringing the campaign against the city to the point of victory, he stopped and sent word to David - "I have fought against Rabbah, I have even captured the city of waters. Now therefore gather the rest of the people together and camp against the city and capture it, lest I capture the city myself and it be named after me." David did as Joab said and he captured the city of Rabbah. It was here that David took the crown of gold from their king and it was placed on David's head.
Once again, there is unquestionably a MOST revealing prophetic message here, but before we look at this, please allow me to make a personal comment on behalf of myself and for every father who must be a Joab, a Yahweh Father, to his children.
What are my intentions for my children? They are for their good. Though I must be a "too difficult" Joab to them when they want to do wrong or in order to lead them in that which is right, in truth I want the David mercy to unite with me in order to contend against the fortresses that must be conquered, and mercy will have the city named after it. Even as has been noted, mercy is much easier and of course much more enjoyable. I do want mercy to receive the ultimate credit, even the mercy Yahshua taught. This is indeed my hope; but even so I must say - I do not want mercy at the expense of that which is right and good. Fathers, don't think that you are only to be "too difficult." Remember that this same Yahweh Father Joab captured Rabbah, but he called in merciful David to complete the task so that he could receive the credit. Let our hearts ever be for our children and for their long term good. Now for the extraordinarily important and revealing testimony Yahweh has in this account.
When I pondered this account, I was very perplexed. Here we see David and Joab, mercy and truth, working together. I was particularly perplexed from a personal standpoint. Presently I have two daughters who are removed from me (Christi actually being out of the home in my permissive will, though not in circumstances that are desirable to me), and as I seek Yahweh on their behalf, I find in this account a time when Joab calls in David to insure that he, mercy, receives the credit (even receiving his crown). So my BIG question was - Where is it that I do likewise with my two estranged daughters?
From The Conflict, we know that at some point law and mercy must come together in order to bring forth offspring. But we also know that this union must be legal. One cannot have offspring that are illegal. Thus, knowing that my personal testimony here, Joab, did in fact unite law and mercy here at Rabbah, when was I to seek likewise for my daughters? Yahweh knows this good is my desire for my daughters, but I had to know the truth here as to when this response was to be applied. Once again I knew that I had to discuss this with my son, Micah, in order to receive the answer.
That evening he and I were alone at home and I was preparing our supper. I told him I had another matter to seek together with him for an answer, and he came into the kitchen with me. I began explaining the dilemma, even as I have presented here, and once again through our exchange, Yahweh gave me the answer, and here it is. It relates precisely to the process of exchange with Micah that I just explained.
The name of the city that Joab called David to come and conquer was Rabbah. Joab had certainly taken many other cities before, so why was it that he specifically wanted David to come and take this one? From the natural standpoint we cannot answer that question; but remember, the major purpose of the Scriptures is prophecy, to propound a riddle, and this is precisely what we find once again in this most revealing account.
"Rabbah" comes from the word "rabab," which means "to become many or much, to multiply." Therefore we see that Joab called David to join with him in order to conquer "multiply." What testimony do we find here? It is quite clear.
In The Conflict, we note that the purpose for which law and mercy come together is to bring forth offspring. What is bringing forth offspring? Clearly, as spoken to Adam and Eve after their creation (Genesis 1:28), and repeated to Noah regarding the animals after the flood (Genesis 8:17), it is to be fruitful and multiply. Thus that which we see here is quite evident - Joab law united with the David mercy in order to multiply! Procreation!
But here again is really the BIG question - When can this legally take place? When can I come together with my daughters to once again bring forth spiritual "offspring" in a united relationship? The answer of course is in the testimony of the natural union of a man and his wife.
What was it that took place between Micah and I as the truths presented herein unfolded? We were having "intercourse," in the original sense of the use of this word - literally, "a running or passing between," or communication, connection by reciprocal dealings between persons. From the very beginning when I said to Micah, "I wish I understood David and Joab," and he responded, "If you understood them, you would understand God," this has been an intercourse or exchange between the two of us, a union that has multiplied and brought forth the spiritual offspring of divine truth. And most importantly, why is it that this has taken place between Micah and I? Because he has become one with me, which is the testimony of marriage.
When two become one in marriage, the product is offspring, or multiplication. Likewise, in the case of that which Yahweh is showing us here between Joab and David at Rabbah, when law and mercy come together, the result is multiplication, and mercy receives its crown. But once again it must be said here (as too many mercy types will demand the putting away of Joab), mercy cannot have this union until it learns to die. In every regard here the testimony is that mercy must die to itself in order for law to unite with it. This is true in the kingdom with the death of Yahshua, it is thus equally true with the death of the body of Yahshua (Christianity), and this will be true in my home and in your home.
It used to be that I had wonderful "intercourse," again in the true sense of that word, with my daughters. Some of the truths I present today are from the intercourse I have had with my girls. As with my conversation with Micah, there have been some times when what they have shared with me has brought forth incredible revelations. But not any more. There is no spiritual multiplication with them now. Likewise, there were some incredible truths that came about from the intercourse I had with the man who served me for two years; but now those things that he has presented are lifeless and full of mercy error. Going back even further, I used to carry on the same spiritual intercourse with my wife with the same results - spiritual insight, offspring. But she too has had a hard time seeing the Remnant truths, and of recent has been affected by the ways of my two older daughters, and there is no longer oneness there in spiritual matters. In fact, before I shared with my son about this question at hand, I tried to share it with my wife; but since we are not spiritually one, once again the testimony was that there could be no spiritual offspring. However, praise Yahweh for my son!
I am MOST grateful that Yahweh has always had a remnant in my home and in my life so that spiritual offspring could come forth - in the beginning with my wife before the Remnant issue came forth, then with both of my older daughters before they were drawn away from me, then for two years with a man who served me, but praise Yahweh, He has now given me a son who has been given my heart. (And I might add that there are other brothers and sisters with whom this like intercourse has gratefully brought forth offspring/fruitfulness as well.) Of course my prayers and my very being longs for the day when I can have spiritual intercourse with my entire family. And oh what a blessing those two younger girls are to me! May Yahweh restore and complete my home. May the spirit of Elijah have its work and turn the hearts of my children to their father, as my heart is turned to them. And may Yahweh use the truths He is revealing here to do likewise in multiplied many other homes and lives as well.
So once again, do you see how fruit or spiritual offspring comes when there is the Joab/David, law/mercy, union at Rabbah? It comes when mercy is willing to be one with law, when the child is willing to be one with their father, when the wife is willing to be one with her husband, and when the husband is free to give the praise to them. When law, when a father, when a husband knows that the mercy part is one with him, then this frees him to call unto them and give them the credit for the victory.
Do you, wife or child, want your husband or father to do what is right and to have mercy? Then you hold the key to this. As long as you fight against him, he must fight back (be a Joab) or else be defeated (which many men are). A man can never call in a David and give him the credit for the victory (having mercy for his wife or child) as long as there is lawlessness. Every father's desire should be to give the credit to his children and wife, but knowing in fact that it was his Joab work that first initiated the multiplication, or conquered the city. David was called in by Joab only after Joab conquered the city first. Joab was continuing to be the head, the Yahweh Father; but his heart was to give the credit to David. This would surely be the desire of every man whose wife and children honor him as the head of their home. And once again, what is the product of that kind of home? Offspring! Spiritual and even emotional fruitfulness and multiplication; and mercy is crowned king of that home.
The father, the husband, must be the Joab in every regard - as a "too difficult" Joab who corrects rebellion and does all that he can to always preserve a remnant of truth and life in the home, as well as uniting with his wife and children in oneness when they are willing to be one with him, and he can freely give credit to them, crowning them with honor. This is the home that Yahweh Father has provided us as His testimony and example. It is not always the "perfect" home, even as my home presently testifies; but, it is to always be the home that operates according to the divine government of Yahweh - correcting as correction must take place, and always hoping for the day, no matter how impossible it seems and no matter how much one might fear and experience the reactions of others, when law and mercy finally unite, when "Lovingkindness and truth have met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other."
The only way possible for a child or wife to truly have the kind of relationship we are speaking of here is to first turn their heart to their father or husband. Like a skilled diver who turns his head wherever he wants his body to follow, so a child or wife must turn their heart to their father or husband, and their emotions and actions will follow. Otherwise, this relationship is impossible. This much needed and essential change is expressed in those closing words of the Old Testament - turning "the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers." Only when one turns their heart to the other party, whether it be the heart of the father, or the heart of the child or the wife, can progress be possible. Men, turn your heart to your children and wife to do them good, whether it be in showing mercy for the purpose of multiplication or by being "too difficult" for them. Have their good as your purpose in all you do, being willing to take the pressure to do that which is right. Children, even wife, turn your heart to your father/husband, and honor him with your trust and obedience. You will honor Yahweh in doing this, and free your father/husband to be all that He can and should and wants to be under Yahweh.
You will notice here that Rabbah was equally called "the city of waters." From the standpoint of the family, these are the waters of refreshing that come to a home when the divine order of Yahweh operates in that home. But also, corporately these are the waters of the latter rain that precede the return of Yahshua as King of Kings, when He will receive His crown. When a Remnant people do precisely that which my two daughters need to do - to die to themselves, uniting their hearts to their Father's heart - then the waters of refreshing will be provided. May we seek Yahweh with all our hearts for this much needed place of refreshment. May indeed our hearts be one with His, and one in our family. And may He lead His Remnant as we seek Him with all our heart. Remember, you determine what your father/husband will be.
"And he will restore the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the land with a curse."
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