Romans 13 (Part 6)
First posted: January 1, 2014
This article is the sixth in a series of articles dealing in detail with the spiritual meaning behind Romans chapter 13.
Romans 13:11 declares the following:
"And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed" (Romans 13:11)
The word "knowing" in the verse above was translated from the Greek verb eido, which has a connotation of knowledge at the mind level. The word "time" was translated from the noun kairos, which, as we have shared before refers more to doors of opportunity than to chronological time itself. As we have shared before, evangelists (and Amorites, when they "go bad") are people who are quick to seize opportunities to conquer new lands. Therefore, seizing a kairos requires evangelistic "behaviour".
As opposed to chronological time, kairos time is spiritual in nature, and knowing it in the mind (i.e. eido-ing it ) requires a discernment that goes beyond the natural mind. As we have studied before, the ministerial endowment that enables the revelation of new wisdom in the mind is the apostolic endowment. Therefore, the endowment that best prepares a believer to "know the time" is the apostolic endowment. Hence, we can conclude that the apostolic endowment makes us aware of the kairos, and it is the evangelistic endowment which enables us to act on it and seize it. As we have shared before, angels are apostolic-evangelistic, meaning that "knowing the time" requires an "angelic" disposition.
The phrase "high time" in Romans 13:11 was translated from the Greek word hora, from which the English word "hour" is derived. Therefore, hora here speaks of a limited time interval appointed for carrying out a task. According to Romans 13:11, the task in question requires that we "awake out of sleep". The word "awake" was translated from the verb egeiro, which literally means "to arise", and is the verb used throughout the New Testament when speaking of Christ being raised from the dead. The word "sleep" was translated from the word hypnos, from which the English word "hypnosis" is derived. Therefore, to "awake from sleep" means to deliberately arise from a complacent state in which we are hypnotised by natural, earthly things.
In Romans 13:11, God says that we are to "arise from sleep" because "our salvation is nearer than when we believed". When most believers read this, they simply reduce it to meaning, "the end of the world is near". This, however, is a distorted oversimplification of what the Lord is saying. To better understand this phrase, we must consider another passage where the Spirit speaks of "salvation", "nearness", and "believing":
"8 But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; 9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. 10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation." (Romans 10:8-10)
[The word "nigh" in verse 8 above was translated from the Greek word eggys; this word correlates with the Greek word for "nearer" in Romans 13:11, eggyteron. In fact, eggyteron is the comparative form of eggys, just as "nearer" is to "near" in English.
The word "salvation" at the end of Romans 10:10 was translated from the Greek word soteria, which is the same word used in Romans 13:11.
Romans 10:8 above declares that the "word" is "near". The word "word" was translated from the Greek word rhema, which, as we have shared before, is prophetic in nature. Hence, God is declaring that His prophetic rhema is near us, and it is a matter of reaching out and putting it in our mouths and our hearts. As we let it abide in our hearts, it produces righteousness, and, as we issue it from our mouths, it produces salvation (Romans 10:10). Righteousness is inherently apostolic, for it is intricately related to judgements (and the apostolic endowment is one of judgements). Salvation, on the other hand, is inherently evangelistic, for the evangelistic endowment is intricately related to saving. Notice, therefore, how all of this points again to an "angelic" apostle-evangelist combination, just like the phrase "know the time" of Romans 13:11.
According to Romans 10:9, we must believe in our hearts that God raised Yeshua from the dead. The word "raised" in that verse was translated from the Greek word egeiro, which, as we said above, was translated as "awake" in Romans 13:11. Notice that Romans 10:9 declares that Yeshua was raised by God, which implies that Yeshua did not "raise Himself", so to speak. Yeshua had to trust that God would not leave His soul in Sheol (Psalm 16:10, Acts 2:27), and He had to wait until God raised Him from the dead. When this happened, Yeshua enabled our rise from "hypnos sleep" within the realm of chronos time. When we deliberately take the rhema that God raised Yeshua from the dead and place it in our hearts, we "activate" the potential for our rise from "hypnos sleep" in apostolic righteousness. In other words, the apostolic foundation for our rise is to believe in our hearts the prophetic rhema that God raised Yeshua from the dead, a rhema that is "near you", "there for the taking".
After producing apostolic righteousness through believing in your heart, you must then take the prophetic rhema that is near you and speak it from your mouth. According to Romans 10:9, our mouths release salvation as we "confess the Lord Jesus". The word "confess" was translated from the Greek verb homologeo, which literally means, "to say the same logos word". Therefore, to "confess the Lord Jesus" speaks of pronouncing the same logos words as the Lord Jesus. When the Holy Spirit uses the word "Christ" in the New Testament, He is referring to Yeshua in His anointing, and, when He uses the word "Jesus", He is referring to Yeshua in His humanity. Thus, the words "Lord Jesus" speak of Jesus exercising Lordship in the midst of His humanity. This means that "to confess the Lord Jesus" is to recognise that Yeshua, being a human, exercised "God Lordship" on Earth. In a deeper sense, it speaks of speaking the same words of "God Lordship" in one's own humanity just as Yeshua did whilst on Earth. To homologeo the Lord Jesus is to believe that you, even as a vessel of human weakness, can exercise "God Dominion" on Earth and release God's evangelistic salvation on Earth.
We can summarise what we have seen so far from Romans 10:8-10 in the following table:
As you take the prophetic rhema that God places near you, putting it in your heart and issuing it from your mouth, you initiate (apostolic-evangelistic) angelic action that releases deliverance into the Earth. As you consider this, it is important to view Romans 10:8-10 beyond the traditional "receive-Jesus-and-get-saved" interpretation that the Church has given it (which is technically correct but incomplete).
In Romans 13:11, Paul wrote to believers that "now, our salvation is nearer than when we believed". Considering that he is talking to people who have already believed in Christ and confessed Him as Lord, it would seem as a contradiction to say that their salvation is "nearer" if it has already been "obtained", given that Romans 10:8-10 says that those who confess the Lord Jesus are saved. The fact that Romans 13:11 says that our salvation is nearer now than when we believed makes the apparent contradiction even greater, since the verb "believed" is in the past tense. This apparent contradiction between Romans 13:11 and Romans 10:8-10 is quickly resolved if you consider the "target audience" in each of the passages. In Romans 10:8-10, the focus is on the individual, as shown by the appearance of the words "thy", "thee", and "thou". By contrast, the focus in Romans 13:11 is collective, as shown by the use of the word "our". Therefore, we can say that Romans 10:8-10 delineates the mechanism for salvation (i.e. deliverance), which, once you have applied on yourself, you can use to release deliverance into the lives of your neighbours (i.e.- all those "near" you who have been assigned to you). Said another way, Romans 13:11 points to an awareness of "corporeal salvation" (i.e. the salvation of the Church as a whole), especially when that salvation is "nearer", there for the taking. Most of us, unfortunately, remain "asleep", unaware that it is time to "egeiro", i.e. time to arise and produce deliverance through our mouths, not only for ourselves but for others.
From all of the above, we can conclude that the statement "our salvation is nearer than when we believed" is a call from God to go from the "passive", "implicit", and "individual" stage of "believing" to the more "active", "explicit", and "generalised" stage of "confessing". Believing draws the near rhema of God nearer, and confessing man's "God Lordship" in Christ takes that rhema of God and projects it into the Earth to effect salvation in ourselves and in others.
In Romans 13:12, the Lord declares the following:
"The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light." (Romans 13:12)
The phrase "far spent" was translated from the Greek verb prokopto, which literally means "to beat forward" and is derived from the prefix pro meaning "before, ahead" and the verb kopto meaning "to cut, strike, smite". Therefore, it has the connotation of something that has been lengthened by hammering, as when an ironsmith forges metal. Hence, prokopto implies "proactiveness", since metal does not lengthen itself significantly unless someone spends the time to heat it up and the energy to hammer it to a greater length. Thus, the Lord is declaring that the "night" has been proactively prolonged by the matriarchal forces that relish and need the night's darkness. As we have shared before, pastors are designed to execute "iron" judgements of correction. Hence, Romans 13:12 reveals how pastors have been hammering God's remnant with iron judgements that are laden with the Jebusite spirit so as to "correct" the "spirit-centredness" out of the remnant. These "hammerings" have knocked us into a state of persistent slumber, destroying the belief that the night should end any time soon.
The phrase "is at hand" in Romans 13:12 above was translated from the Greek verb eggizo, which literally means "to near" and is related to the word eggys ("nigh") of Romans 10:8 and eggyteron ("nearer") of Romans 13:11. Interestingly enough, the verb eggizo is used in the perfect tense in Romans 13:12. As you may know, the perfect tense speaks of an action that has been completed in the past. Therefore, the phrase "the day is at hand" is better translated as "the day has neared", which means that the day will draw near up to a certain point, after which it will stop and "wait" for you to reach out and make it a present-day reality.
Because we must reach out and "pull the day into current existence", we must "cast off the works of darkness", according to Romans 13:12. To better understand what this means, we must consider the words "works" and "darkness", which were translated from the Greek words ergon and skotos respectively. Interestingly enough, these words only appear in the same verse 3 times in Scripture. The first time is in the following verse, translated as "deeds" and "darkness":
[The word "condemnation" was slightly mistranslated from the Greek word krisis, which literally means "judgement"]
The word "evil" at the end of verse 19 above was translated from the Greek word poneros, which, as we have shared before, does not necessarily have the connotation of moral evil. Instead, it refers to things that cause unnecessary hardships and burdens, which points to the Girgashite spirit of earthliness, since that is the spirit that prompts people to perform a great deal of meaningless religious works and procedures that may seem on the surface to be "righteous", or at least "innocuous" in the worst of cases. Thus, the Lord is calling us to see the darkness in abundant works that appear "pious", "sacrificial", and "relevant" on the outside but which, when exposed to the light, are shown to be spiritually vacuous.
After John 3:19, the next verse that includes both ergon ("work") and skotos ("darkness") is Romans 13:12, and the third and last verse that includes both is the following verse:
The word "fellowship" above speaks of soul communion, and, as we have shared before, the spirit most directly related to unrighteous soul communion is the anti-judgement, Canaanite spirit that values feelings over truth. Therefore, the Lord is calling us to see the darkness in works that exalt soulish communion, which seem commendable and something to revel in, but which are, in fact, worthy of reproof because of how spiritually unfruitful they are (consider, for example, the unfruitfulness of all the social media communication that people presently engage in).
For a better understanding of the Canaanite nature
of the "works of darkness", consider the verse that follows Ephesians 5:11:
The verb "done" was translated from the Greek verb ginomai, which literally means "to become" and is the root of the word gyne meaning "woman". In a negative sense, therefore, the word ginomai ("done" in Ephesians 5:12) speaks of works that are born out of "female" emotionalism that refuses to be bridled by the judgements of God's Spirit. The phrase "in secret" in Ephesians 5:12 was translated from the Greek adverb kryphe, which is derived from the verb krypto meaning "to hide"; krypto, in fact, is the root of the English word "encrypted", which speaks of things that mask their true meaning. Hence, we can say that an atmosphere of soul communion filled with "female" emotionalism always hides an unrighteous secret agenda that can only be decrypted through God's apostolic wisdom. If you get caught up in the "good feelings" of that atmosphere of soul communion, you will not perceive the spiritual destruction and desolation that takes place when you participate in it (consider, for example, the silent spiritual loss and destruction that happens every year around the "feel-good" xmas season).
The word "shame" in Ephesians 5:12 above was translated from the Greek word aischron, which only appears 3 times in Scripture. The other 2 appearances are in the following verses:
Notice how both passages speak of a woman submitting under the covering of her man, which is a figure of the "female" soul submitting under the "male" spirit. Therefore, the "shame" of Ephesians 5:12 refers to people who become worthy of humiliation before God for allowing their soul to rule over their spirit. This is why the first time that man experienced shame was immediately after Adam listened to his wife and ate of the tree in the middle of the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:17). There is nothing inherently "evil" about eating the fruit of a tree, yet that was the first "work of darkness" that man did. In the same way, most people, including "devout Christians", are constantly carrying out "works of darkness" that are worthy of shame, even when those acts seem innocent and proper. Why? Because they are being carried out under the control of uncovered souls that have chosen to reject the covering of the spirit.
This connection between "works of darkness" and the shame produced by soulish behaviour explains why the "works of darkness" are linked to both the Girgashite and the Canaanite spirits. As we have shared earlier, these spirits emerge through the distortion of the teacher and pastoral endowments respectively, which, as we have also seen before, are the 2 "female" ministries. All of this emphasises the "matriarchal" nature of the "works of darkness".
After speaking of evil works and darkness in John 3:19 (quoted above), the Lord says the following:
The word "doeth" above was slightly mistranslated from the Greek verb prasso, which is better translated as "to put into practice" and speaks of deliberate repetition. The word "evil" was "under-translated" from the Greek word phaulos, which literally means "easy, slight, ordinary, mean, worthless, of no account". Therefore, the sorely mistranslated phrase "doeth evil" actually speaks of someone who has chosen to live out a life of constant mediocrity, a life doing what comes "easy" or "naturally" to the soul , with no interest for a higher level of existence. In the lives of most believers, this is manifested in faithful churchgoing, in attending long but superficial "Bible studies" and religious meetings, and in occasionally witnessing to "unbelievers". Whenever the Holy Spirit sows guilt into the hearts of these believers about the banality of their spiritual existence, the "best" amongst them normally react by stepping on the accelerator, doing more and more of the same. As we have shared before, these believers are devoutly committed to the 2 swords of Luke 22:38, which convinces them that God's battles are won by simply pouring more material and emotional resources into the conflict. Picking up their pom-poms, they cheer themselves and those around them into a more frenzied state of emotional commitment, and they take to "planning" and "organising" in the natural in order to gather more "funding" for the cause. As they engage in this, the convictive voice of the Holy Spirit is silenced, and they can pretend once again that there is nothing more to life than what they know. This is what it means to practise (prasso) the ordinary (phaulos), or "to do evil", as the King James Version mistakenly declares in John 3:20. "Illuminated" as these phaulos deeds may seem, they are nothing but shameful "darkness" before God.
According to Romans 13:12, we must "cast off" these works of darkness. The phrase "cast off" was translated from the Greek verb apotithemi, which is derived from the prefix apo meaning "of separation" and the verb tithemi meaning "to set, put, place, establish". Therefore, the word apotithemi speaks of a deliberate separation where you set or plant something away from you, leaving it there as you move on. "Normality", at least the one that the soul promotes, does not come off on its own. Just like a stubborn stain, it must be abhorred and scrubbed off with gusto until it is completely off; and, even if you have not been stained by it, the same "stubborn" attitude is required to keep that "soul normality" off of you in order to operate in the higher level of the Spirit. That higher level does not involve more Girgashite straining and burdensome work, and it does not involve more Canaanite communion and emotionalism. Those are the normal coping mechanisms of the soul. The higher level of the Spirit requires a completely different mindset, a different state of being. If you endeavour in the Spirit to find that mindset, that state of being, God will open your understanding, and you will go from glory to glory, rejecting the "normality" of soul dominion and entering into the dominion of the Spirit over the soul. As the first part of Romans 13:12 reveals, there has already been too much of an artificial delay forged by the pastoral-matriarchy system, and there is no time to continue in the soul's normality. It is time to cast off the Girgashite/Canaanite works of darkness and act like apostolic-evangelistic angels, issuing true salvation through the rhema words of our mouths as we stand in God's righteousness.
In Romans 13:12, the Lord declares that we are to cast off the works of darkness and "put on the armour of light". The word "armour" was mistranslated from the Greek noun hoplon, which literally means "instrument", and is translated as such the first 2 times it appears in the New Testament, in Romans 6:13:
"Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God." (Romans 6:13)
As we have explained before, "sin", is, in essence, the soul exerting authority over the spirit (instead of the other way around). Therefore, to not "yield our members as instruments (hoplon) of unrighteousness unto sin" means to not yield to the "normal" atmosphere around us, an atmosphere in which the soul reigns supreme over the spirit. Instead, we are to yield ourselves to God so that our members may be instruments (hoplon) of righteousness unto God. The meaning of the phrase "instruments of righteousness" can easily be watered down by the matriarchal soul, but a quick meditation makes it clear that it is talking about more than just being righteous. This is certified by the 6th and last time that hoplon is used in the New Testament, where it is translated as "weapons" in the King James Version:
[It is worth asking the following to the matriarchal believer: If all we must do is to be "good churchgoin' folk" and wait until the Rapture happens and God straightens out the Earth for us, why would we need to worry about pulling down strongholds? Why would we need to wage any significant warfare and use instruments of war? Let him who has ears discern what the Lord is saying.]
The above verse reveals the more "aggressive" nature of hoplon. Hence, to have our members be "hoplons" of righteousness unto God is to allow God to use us as weapons that forge His righteousness on Earth. This is what it means to "put on our instruments of light", as indicated in Romans 13:12. Notice that we must "put on" these instruments, meaning that they don't simply "fall on us" while we are fast asleep. Instead, we must go look for them, grab them, and put them on, just as a person does in the morning when he or she goes to the closet to get dressed in the morning. The clothes do not fly out of the closet and onto the person. Instead, the person must get out of bed, go to the nearby closet, grab the clothes, and put them on, all of which speaks of the "outward projection" nature of the "male" spirit, as opposed to the more passive nature of the "female" soul.
"2 I sleep, but my heart waketh: it is the voice of my beloved that knocketh, saying, Open to me, my sister, my love, my dove, my undefiled: for my head is filled with dew, and my locks with the drops of the night. 3 I have put off my coat; how shall I put it on? I have washed my feet; how shall I defile them?" (Song of Songs 5:2-3)
Girgashite church activities and the works of Canaanite communion and "compassion" do not turn us into instruments of light. On the contrary, those works of darkness keep us in bed, unable and unwilling to answer the Spirit's knock on the door.
There is more to say regarding Romans 13, but we shall do so (if God allows it) in a future article.