A Samuel or Jethro Government?
Moses appointed men over groups of fifties and hundreds so that he could take care of everything. So this is the question—he needed the structure to help, right?
Do you remember where that advice to Moses came from?
It came from the father-in-law.
Do you know who he was? He was a Midian priest.
He was a demon-worshiper.
Oh…you look at it like that?
I’m not talking about the idea itself. I’m just saying that’s where the idea came from. He wasn’t a follower of God at all.
I realized that lately when I was reading some weeks ago.
That he was a Midian priest?
I’ll come back to the Midian priest in a moment. David was a man after God’s own heart, and he was also king, right? Now, where did the idea of having a king come from?
From the people.
Yes, from the people who wanted to have a king just like the other nations. That’s how the Scriptures say it. They wanted to copy the way the world did things in order to provide order for themselves. Samuel was pretty upset about that. God’s response to Samuel was, “Samuel, you don’t need to take this personally. They’re not rejecting you, Samuel. They’re rejecting Me by wanting a king to administratively run their nation.”
God said, “I’m angry that they want to administratively run My nation. I mean to do it organically through prophetic Life and Peace, but they want something to fall back on, with which to organize themselves. And I don’t like that.”
If you fast-forward a little, you see that Saul was a bit of a problem but then David was a man after God’s own heart. (Samuel was the very one to choose David. He already knew God didn’t want a king, but men were so restless and felt that they needed a king so Samuel went to Jesse’s sons and chose David.) So, having a king wasn’t God’s idea but He found a way to work through it anyway. That kind of thing happens with us a lot of times too. God just loves us so much that He works through something even though it’s not His highest idea.
Back to Moses. He was certainly—to use an American expression—in a bit of a pickle. : ) He was in a jam. He had far more than he could handle, and the way he was doing it was far too much of a burden. There’s no question about that. The idea from the Midian priest may not have been God’s idea any more than having a king was God’s idea. But that doesn’t mean God couldn’t work through it. That may not have been God’s idea, but God is merciful to poor little humans like us. He’s willing to succumb to our weaknesses at times, but that doesn’t mean we wouldn’t always look for something higher. So if we could do it the way Samuel did it, that would be better than doing it the way Saul did it. God said outright, “I’m against this plan of having kings, but we’ll do it anyway just because My people want it to be so. My people love it so.”
The western mindset (unlike the eastern mindset) is a “right versus wrong” mentality. That’s the American mindset. It’s Henry Ford and his conveyor belts, the Dewey decimal system and the scientific method. In our western minds we want very clear-cut answers. But in Africa they don’t care about such things as a clock. If you say, “Let’s meet at a certain time,” and they show up two hours after that, a western mind would say, “You are two hours late.” An eastern mind would say, “We’re right on time. We’re here, so what’s the matter?”
After all, it is today! That’s all that matters. : )
Right. The sun is more or less in the middle—it’s close enough. So, is one mindset right and the other one wrong? Well, no…it’s just a different way of viewing life. The western mind really tends to desire organization, whereas that’s not so true in the east. In the Far East they have a different view of what these things mean. You can see it in a business meeting in China. They have a very different way of viewing things because the culture is different. So I’m just suggesting that God’s culture is also different.
Man has different kinds of government. He has democracy and even within democracy there’s a federalist mentality. Much of the American government evolved from the French Revolution and Robespierre and thought patterns taken from the Romans with their Senate. In the Netherlands and England they have their fake queens, but the parliamentary governments actually make the laws. There are dictatorships in Africa and other places. Which is the most Biblical government? The answer is that a Theocracy is the only Biblical government. God Rules.
That’s why we love you guys so much! It’s because you see His Rule in a special way that most of the religious world doesn’t even try to see. They perhaps don’t even want to see it. What they do is done for God, rather than by God and through God. Doing something “for God” sounds so meritorious and like it would be a compliment to do things “for God.” But His desire is that we do things in Him so that He receives all the Glory.
So when we look at leadership through those eyes, we don’t need Jethro’s advice, and we don’t need Israel’s advice to replace Samuel. What we need to do is find the Samuels and honor a Samuel government which is a prophetic government rather than an institutional Jethro-government. So again—will God raise up a David in the middle of a kingship that God never intended? Oh yes, a thousand Davids! But that doesn’t mean it was His idea.
I can understand all this and know it is true. I have a question though. How do we do the work of God practically? We need to have hierarchy, because if we don’t, it can be like we are floating.
Is it really floating if it’s a true Theocracy? Is it really floating or is Jesus the Head? Just because we can’t see the Headship with our physical eyes, does that mean everybody can’t be responsive to the Head and that it won’t flow? You don’t have a king of your shoulder. Your head leads your shoulder. You don’t have a king over your elbow. Your head leads your elbow. But they’re all joined together, and they’re all interdependent, and your shoulder defines where your elbow goes. But in the end, your shoulder’s not the king, your head is.
Yes, but how could you do things like real-life practical work together?
We do it all the time. I’ll give you an example. We have many books, just like you do. One of ours was a novel. It was a fictional work based on spiritual principles, spiritual truths, and true stories. Real-life stories were used (with the names changed) and they were interwoven and collected together into one book.
(looking at the scenery)
That is beautiful. That would be a shame not to get a picture of that.
Oh, if you want to take a picture we can stop.
Oh no…that’s okay.
Let me turn around and you can take a picture.
Okay. : )