The Train of Time

I knew that at some point of time we would be standing in front of judges and officials to talk about the way we raise our children. If we look at time as a train, you could say we have arrived at a station which may best be described by what the prophet Isaiah said in Isaiah 5:20...

Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil;
Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness;
Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!

I wonder what that station in time would be called? What would the conductor announce to the passengers as they approached it? Is there a conductor announcing the stations of history? Would he not then say, “The next station will be THE LAST DAYS.”?

All of humankind is sitting in the train, and we have all arrived at this station. But we are not all thinking and feeling the same thing about it. Some of us don’t even look out of the window to see what life has become out there.

If we were arriving at the station called THE LAST DAYS, and if we would look out the window, we would see what the prophets (conductors) have warned us about:

But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: for men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away! (2 Timothy 3:1-5)

For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools... Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them. For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator... (Romans 1:21-25)

  • lovers of themselves
  • disobedient to parents, and unthankful for them
  • covenant breakers
  • despisers of those that are good
  • lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God
  • having a form of godliness but denying its power.
  • suppressing the truth in unrighteousness
  • futile in their thoughts
  • darkened in their foolish hearts
  • professing to be wise, they became fools
  • exchanging the truth of God for a lie

Are we going to say anything about it? Are we going to point out which stop this looks like? Are we worried what others might say or think about us? Or are we the ones that aren’t even looking out of the window? How long will the train be stopped here? And what’s more, what will it be like at the next station?

In 1969 I was sitting in the second row of grammar school in Berlin, Germany, looking at my music teacher. She must have been around 50 years old and was sitting at her desk, with her head in her hand, playing with her big key ring as she stared at her desk and big tears ran down her cheeks. I was stunned thinking about what had just happened, knowing that there was no resolve to this situation. The pain I felt in my soul and the memory of it would remain there forever. Yes, I was one of the children that had thrown grapes at her while her back was turned to us as she wrote something on the blackboard. At her outrage we had only laughed. I don’t remember any consequences other than a bad conscience.

Now, 44 years later, I stand in front of a judge because I didn’t want my children to do the same things as I did. I didn’t want them to feel the pain in their souls of not finding resolve for the things they did. I wanted them to respect their teacher. I don’t think my father ever knew about that situation in my class. I don’t think any of the teachers cared enough about our souls to do something about it, even if it was just to tell our parents.

I wonder what station that was on the train of time.

Maybe it was the CHANGE OF VALUES station, where the new values of the sixties started to take over the old ones. I don’t know; I was too young to even look out the window... but not too young to be shocked at what I had done. To look on, helplessly, at the harm you have done another? Oh, so many of us were not too young for that.

They should have loved us enough to take all of us to the principal’s office, and he should have let us feel the “board of education” on our bottoms in a thorough manner. A consistent amount of that would have saved all of us a lot of trouble in life. But at that time a “new mind” was forming on the earth. Things our parents had experienced as children, administered by their parents without question, were suddenly being questioned by our parents. Philosophers and psychologists were answering our parents with their lofty ideas which were supposed to free man from the old-fashioned, “oppressive” ways in which they had been trained.

If people would have been able to look a few stations ahead at what was to come — at the statistics and facts of those countries which wholeheartedly embraced the new philosophers’ teachings and created a society according to their values — they would have screamed at the looming danger. But no one knew, and so the train of time continued on its tracks.

The ink would run out of my pen if I were to try to write about all the school shootings, rapes, thefts, vandalism, and so forth that are going on in these, perhaps, last days as a consequence to embracing this new way of thinking.

So what is happening on the earth? Could it be that the prophet Isaiah was right when he talked about a time that was to come? Could it be that good is being called evil and evil is being called good? Could it be that it is true what the son of God said in 1 John 5:19, We know that we are of God, and the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one.”

In the laws of every nation there are fundamental or constitutional laws — the basic principles and laws of a nation, state, or social group that determine the powers and duties of the government and guarantee certain rights to the people in it. Are these laws protecting man from that sway, or have they become part of that sway?

There are rights called Fundamental Rights, and one of them is called Freedom of Religion. In a country with a state religion, it is generally considered to mean that the government permits religious practices of other sects besides the state religion, and does not persecute believers in other faiths.

So what if my religion, as in James 1:27 (Pure and undefiled religion before God the Father is this: to care for orphans and widows in their misfortune and to keep oneself unstained by the world.”), requires that we should remain unstained by the world?

Now in my case it is not the teaching of some other sect that commands that, but rather the “state religion” in its original form, meaning, just the way the Bible said it. Does the freedom of religion give me the right to believe and practice as the Bible says?

All the newspapers refer to us as a sect or a cult. Is a cult something that practices its religion in its original form, or is it something that has changed from its original form to something else?

“Your honor, you will have to tell me what to do. Who should I obey, God or man? When the apostle Peter was commanded by the high priest not to preach in the Savior’s name any longer, he said, ‘We ought to obey God rather than men.’ Your honor, do I have the freedom, based on the ‘Freedom of Religion’ guaranteed in our Basic Laws, to practice my belief as Peter did?

“And if the governments of the world tell me that I can’t discipline my children, so as to raise them to respect me and thus other authorities, and ultimately God, then can I disobey them by obeying God? Your honor, what should I do with all the proverbs about child rearing that are written in the Bible?”

The one who spares his rod hates his child, but the one who loves his child is diligent in disciplining him. (Proverbs 13:24)

“Your honor, are you telling me to hate my child, according to the word of God?”

Do not withhold discipline from a child; even if you strike him with the rod, he will not die. If you strike him with the rod, you will deliver him from death. (Proverbs 23:13-14)

“Your honor, are you telling me that I should not deliver him from death as the Bible says?”

I know that one might think he can raise children without discipline, and maybe that has worked for some, but what if I believe that it is of utmost importance that I raise my children according to the way of God, as the Bible says? Would the “Freedom of Religion” spoken of in our Basic Laws give me the right to practice as I believe?

After all, even the New Testament encourages fathers to imitate God and discipline their children.

It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline? If you are left without discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. Besides this, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us and we respected them. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits and live? (Hebrews 12:7-9)

For the writer of Hebrews, it was the most normal thing that every father would discipline his children. “For what son is there whom his father doesn’t discipline?” Such a thing was unheard of in those days. But as we are considering, we are in the last days and there will be children who don’t obey their parents. It will be those children who didn’t have a father who disciplined them who will not obey their parents.

Just as the apostle Paul replied to the King Agrippa, “And now I stand and am judged for the hope of the promise made by God to our fathers,” so are we here standing on trial for the hope of the prophecy of bringing about the “Male Child” of Revelation 14:1-5,

Then I looked, and behold, a Lamb standing on Mount Zion, and with Him one hundred and forty-four thousand, having His Father’s name written on their foreheads. And I heard a voice from heaven, like the voice of many waters, and like the voice of loud thunder. And I heard the sound of harpists playing their harps. They sang as it were a new song before the throne, before the four living creatures, and the elders; and no one could learn that song except the hundred and forty-four thousand who were redeemed from the earth. These are the ones who were not defiled with women, for they are virgins. These are the ones who follow the Lamb wherever He goes. These were redeemed from among men, being first-fruits to God and to the Lamb. And in their mouth was found no deceit, for they are without fault before the throne of God.

These children will have been brought up through true religion as it says in James 1:27, “Pure and undefiled religion before God the Father is this: to care for orphans and widows in their misfortune and to keep oneself unstained by the world.”

They will be unstained by the world — they will not have just graduated from high school or college for God to put His name on their forehead.

Does the fundamental right called “Freedom of Religion” give me the right to practice my religion according to the promises and prophecies of God?

Will the nation of Germany, through their judges, make room for a people that are upholding the truths in the Bible to the point of obedience? After all, the Son of God, whom the state religion calls Jesus and claims to follow, said:

“If you love me you will obey my commands.” (John 14:15)

“Your honor, will you make room for those who love Him and their children? Or will you force us through your laws to hate Him and our children?”

The one who spares his rod hates his child, but the one who loves his child is diligent in disciplining him. (Proverbs 13:24)

The Twelve Tribes is a confederation of twelve self-governing tribes, composed of self-governing communities. We are disciples of the Son of God whose name in Hebrew is Yahshua. We follow the pattern of the early church in Acts 2:44 and 4:32, truly believing everything that is written in the Old and New Covenants of the Bible, and sharing all things in common.

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