From “Feast of Tabernacles,” Chapter 12- Tabernacles – The Feast of Glory- The Events of the Seventh Month Blend Into One, continued
This is what happened. Because of Solomon’s disobedience God decreed that his kingdom should be broken up. And so to Jeroboam were given ten tribes of Israel for his kingdom, and to Rehoboam were given the other two tribes. Jeroboam, then, was to be king of Israel; and Rehoboam king of Judah. But Jeroboam was at a great disadvantage, because Jerusalem was in Rehoboam’s kingdom–and what would happen if Israel should go up to the holy city to worship God? So reasoned Jeroboam. He was in danger of losing his kingdom if the people were to continue going up to Jerusalem to sacrifice unto the Lord and observe the Feasts. So we are told he took counsel, “and made two calves of gold, and said unto them, It is too much for you to go up to Jerusalem: behold thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt.” (1 Kgs. 12:28). And the people believed it! And so they went to worship at Bethel and Dan where the calves were set up. You see, Bethel means House of God, and Dan signifies Judge. We have shown how the number “two” signifies the Body of Christ, the fullness of Christ in His people. And so Jeroboam made two calves. Bethel the House of God, and Dan the Judge! A real counterfeit of the Body of Christ and the ministries in that Body! Dan will be there to judge; there will be apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers. And to all appearances it will be the Body of Christ. It was at Bethel, you will recall, that God appeared to Jacob when he fled from the face of his brother Esau, and as he slept he saw the angelic hosts ascending and descending upon the ladder. We have already shown how this typifies the fullness of the Son of Man in His Body. And Jacob awoke in fear and cried: “How dreadful is this place! This is none other but the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.” (Gen. 28:17). But now at the very house of God a golden calf is worshipped as the God of Israel!
Nor will Jeroboam stop at this. The saints of God in this present hour are hungry, desperately hungry for the things of God and the restoration of the Feasts of the Lord. And so Jeroboam will provide a Feast of Tabernacles for them too. “And Jeroboam ordained a feast in the eighth month, on the fifteenth day of the month, like unto the feast that is in Judah… So he offered upon the altar which he had made in Bethel the fifteenth day of the eighth month, even in the month which he had devised of his own heart…” (1 Kgs. 12:32, 33).
These are sad truths, and yet so genuinely applicable in our day. And the reason for the whole idolatrous system was simply this: Jeroboam did not have the real thing, and he wanted to maintain his kingdom, so he had to provide a substitute. The golden calves which he made were intended to maintain the unity of his kingdom, and to prevent his people from going to Jerusalem to keep the real Feasts of the Lord. “And this thing became a sin…” to the children of Israel. But God’s judgment was upon it. Said the Lord, “They have set up kings, but not by me: they have made princes, and I knew it not: of their silver and their gold have they made them idols, that they may be cut off. Thy calf, O Samaria, hath cast thee off; mine anger is kindled against them.” (Hos. 8:4, 5). GHW
Do you see what leadership does when they no longer have the real thing, the anointing of God on their lives? They create substitutes and try to pass that false anointing off on the people. And many times the people believe it! They are told it is for their best good to do what the leadership tells them to do, regardless of how out of line it is with Scripture. Then legalism sets in to keep the people in line. Do this, this, and this, and all is good for you. God will be happy with your obedience.
Paul rebukes the Galatians in chapter 1, verses 6-12 and again in chapter 3, verses 1-5:
6 I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel; 7which is really not another; only there are some who are disturbing you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. 8 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed! 9 As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching to you a gospel contrary to what you received, he is to be accursed! 10For am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God? Or am I striving to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a bond-servant of Christ. 11For I would have you know, brethren, that the gospel which was preached by me is not according to man. 12For I neither received it from man, nor was I taught it, but I received it through a revelation of Jesus Christ.
1You foolish Galatians, who has bewitched you, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was publicly portrayed as crucified? 2 This is the only thing I want to find out from you: did you receive the Spirit by the works of the Law, or by hearing with faith? 3 Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh? 4Did you suffer so many things in vain– if indeed it was in vain? 5 So then, does He who provides you with the Spirit and works miracles among you, do it by the works of the Law, or by hearing with faith? (Gal 1:6-12, 3:1-5 NASB).
Lord, help us know the difference!