John Gavazzoni
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The Gavazzonis'

A Faulty Equation
By John Gavazzoni

In A.D. 70, the effects of the wielding of two contra distinctive "swords" became prototypically evident. The one sword was 'the sword of the Spirit" in the person of the Word of God, our Lord Jesus Christ, that One who by His very presence, pierces to the discerning of the thoughts and intents of the heart exposing a spirit summed up by the words from that period, "we will not have this Man to rule over us." The other was the sword of Rome, classically representing mankind's abuse and distortion of the dominion principle in the kingdom of heaven.

The former triggered the latter, but they must not be equated, Without careful thought, though, in the present appropriate and largely truly corrective re-examination of the unfolding of biblical prophecy, that flawed equation might exist in the presentation or misunderstanding of one of Preterism's premises that could effect our basic perception of God's activity among men.

That a turn in the right direction has occurred is undeniable, and that turn is having the effect of leading to a collapse of an eschatological house of cards in the minds of honest seekers. But let's take our time, saints, and not rush on to conclusions without more careful examination of all the elements of the newer, fresher, more accurate understanding of the coming of the Son of Man, especially in regard to foundational issues.

Just recently we had Mike, the almost fiancé of our youngest daughter Joy, install new hardwood flooring in our kitchen. I paused from time to time as I had been writing and watched some of Mike's work. I noticed how carefully he proceeded, gently tapping each piece tongue into groove, and then making sure that it was perfectly aligned with the last piece so that finally every piece would fit into a beautiful new kitchen floor. In carpentry, the rule is: measure twice, cut once, and I was watching a true professional take that kind of care.

To be "off' just a little at one end, is to be way "off" at the other end. Now let me quickly say, lest the reader think my appreciation was that of someone of comparable expertise, it definitely was not. Sometimes appreciation of good work can come from one of comparable expertise, whereas in my case it came from one whose expertise is limited to knowing which end of the hammer to hold — just ask my wife. It was like me as an old golf-duffer appreciating the precision of Tiger Wood.

To equate what Jesus came to do with what Rome did to Jerusalem, its populace, and the temple involves some flawed thinking. His coming did not equate to the populace of Jerusalem sinking into cannibalism under the pressure of the siege either. Rome's army came to steal, kill and destroy; exactly what Jesus did NOT come to do. He came that we might have life, and that more abundantly. Yet it is true that there is an association of His coming, and an effect of His coming that is linked to Titus' army, but the one is not the other.

The coming of the Son of Man will result in universal peace, but the scripture does teach that He would come, and did come in judgment, and that He did not come to bring peace (immediately), but a sword.

Crisis always emerges where and when Jesus' presences. When and where He is manifestly present, a separation occurs between those who are given to so fully recognize Him as to be drawn to Him, and those deprived of that same sufficiency of grace.

In the case of those who had witnessed Reality walking among them, but were left to their own reaction, His presence had the effect of creating individual and national spiritual implosion, which always historically has drawn to itself attack from without also. In this manner, the Son of Man came in judgment.

The hearts of men, and the heart of a religious culture were exposed, and drawn out into a full "acting out," of their enmity against God by the coming of the Son of Man. The actual equation had to do with the rejection of their own humanity in their rejection of His. Divine judgment, we know, is always and essentially corrective, but that correction involves applying the necessary heat to cause what is foreign and alien to our true nature to rise to the surface and be removed.

A madness takes over a people when they become unified in their resentment against God, while also holding firm to a conviction of religious, philosophical, and ideological superiority; a madness that always leads to destruction. Civilization after civilization has come and gone as evidence of this fact (look out America). A pervasive demonic spirit in Israel at that time was channelled through, and voiced by those who cried, "Let His blood be upon us, and upon our children."

John GavazzoniJohn Gavazzoni
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