Archive | August, 2016

To Siege or not to Siege?

8 Aug

Amos Rubuking

For a while now many of us in the message have watched YouTube videos put out by “International Siege Ambassadors Ministry “. These people led by sister Patricia Matthews have taken to the old practice of rebuking at the gate. Otherwise known as the “siege” against the church.

There has been quite a controversy among not only SDA but DSDA. There seems to be mixed opinions among present truth believers as to whether this work is sanctioned by God or not.

So let us now look at this practice and what the Word says about it. One thing is sure it has caused agitation among the SDA and DSDA community.

In our title reference we read,

“They hate him that rebukes in the gate, and they abhor him that speaks uprightly.”

We found an excellent commentary of what was meant by rebuking in the gate.

“The prophets seized the opportunity of finding the people together, and preached to them there. So it was even in the days of Solomon. “Wisdom crieth without; she uttereth her voice in the streets; she crieth in the chief place of concourse, in the openings of the gates, in the city she uttereth her words, How long, ye simple ones, will ye love simplicity?…”Proverbs 1:20-22, and again, “She standeth in the top of high places, by the way, in the meeting of the paths. She crieth at the gates, at the entry of the city, at the coming in at the doors; Unto you, O men, I call, “Pro 8:2-4.

Jeremiah mentions two occasions, upon which God bade him reprove the king and people in the gates of Jerusalem Jeremiah 17:19; Jeremiah 19:2. There doubtless Amos and Hosea reproved them, and, for reproving, were “hated.” As Isaiah says, “they lay a snare for him that reproveth in the gate”Isaiah 29:21. They sinned publicly, and therefore they were to be rebuked publicly. They sinned “in the gate” by injustice and oppression, and therefore were to be “rebuked before all, that others also might fear” 1 Timothy 5:20. (Bible Hub Amos 5:10)

S0 we see that the messengers of God went to the place where God’s people gathered together. They reproved the sins of the people there, due to the fact that the sins were open sins and likewise open rebuke was called for.

We also see that these truth advocaters were hated. They were despised. Has times changed about this work? Absolutely not.

Our Facebook group Truth Tellers has recently received some videos from sister Matthews new FB group. As mentioned there has been mixed reviews. Sister Matthews has posted numerous videos on many DSDA FB sites and we’ve had a chance to get a good feedback from our present truth believers.

Comments we noted were–

“I’m not sure God wants us to do this.”
“I like their courage”

We should know we must take the weight of evidence on any given matter to know what God’s truth is. The following Inspired references indicate a support for the siege efforts.

“Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and shew my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins.” (Isaiah 58:1)

The commentary –

Cry aloud — Be faithful, plain, and earnest in thy addresses, remonstrances, reproofs, and exhortations to and among my people; and spare not — Forbear not to speak whatsoever I command thee for their conviction and reformation. Lift up thy voice like a trumpet — Be not afraid to exert thy voice and spend thy strength in this work. Give an alarm which all may hear.

Show my people their transgressions — Set their sins, all their sins, before them, in a true point of view, and with all their aggravations, especially the iniquities of their holy things, and the hypocrisy of their religious services, (Isaiah 58:2,) that they may be brought to true repentance for them.”(Bible Hub Isaiah 58:1)

“Open rebuke is better than secret love.” (Proverbs 27:5)

This counsel is simple yet profound. How many of us Elijah messengers sit quietly in the church, week after week, secretly hoping and wishing we could reach our brethren with this final warning message? Are we not secretly loving them yet not opening our mouths in warning like these few courageous warriors for God?

SOP gave a powerful counsel to open rebuke —

“Let none entertain the thought that I regret or take back any plain testimony I have borne to individuals or to the people. If I have erred anywhere, it is in not rebuking sin more decidedly and firmly. Some of the brethren have taken the responsibility of criticizing my work and proposing an easier way to correct wrongs. To these persons I would say: I take God’s way and not yours. ” (Testimonies vol. 5, p.19)

Let us now look at the Rod to see if the idea that such siege behavior is God’s will or hurtful instead of helpful.

“Isa. 58:1–“Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and shew My people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins.” God asks His watchmen to cry aloud and not to leave one thing undone; to life up their voices like a trumpet, and fear not how far the sound may reach; to show the transgressions and sins to His people, by a general housecleaning, “for His salvation is near to come, and His righteousness to be revealed”. 

Quoting Testimonies to Ministers, page 427, we read: “Cleanse the camp of this moral corruption, if it takes the highest men in the highest positions.  God will not be trifled with.”(SRod, vol. 1, p.147)

“Blow ye the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in My holy mountain: let all the inhabitants of the land tremble: for the day of the Lord cometh, for it is nigh at hand.”
Joel 2:1
 “Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and show My people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins.”
Isa. 58:1  (Fundamental Beliefs, p.2)

The following reference is one that some use to dispel the use of sieges.

“..we advise all our people to be peaceful, make no disturbance of any kind, and stay in the denominational churches for we have helped build them. They took our tithes and offerings for the support of the ministry, etc., and as long as we are true S.D.A.’s by keeping the truth they have no legal right from the King of heaven nor from the governments on earth to cast us out.

If they attempt to carry you out, do not resist them. If they set a watch at the doors and bar you out, do not attempt to force yourselves in. If they beat you do not fight back, but by all means try to get in and if you cannot, stay on the outside and witness for present truth until the services are over except when physically unable to do so.(1 SC, no.14, p.8)

Let us remember that those who are sieging their churches have often been evicted from the church and are thus compelled to “stay on the outside.” Further, they do indeed witness for the truth from there.

Let us discuss the often false argument that they are disruptive and causing disturbances. When we see what they are actually doing we see signs such as “We Love You” , “SDA Church does Abortions”, “Ezek. 9 Judgment is Coming”, etc.

Additionally they always have present truth literature and/or CD’s DVD’s ready for all who take them. It is ONLY when the SDA leaders and occasionally the laity, come at them and confront them, often yelling even with profanity, are they made to look like disruptive people.

In other words the actions of the siege teams are one of love, warning and action. They are indeed lifting their voices like a “trumpet” to show the house of Israel their sins.

In closing, God’s word specifically warned us not to “hate” or despise those who “rebuke in the gate.” He does not change, so this pleading method today truly is “crying aloud” and lifting their voices like a “trumpet” to show the house of Israel (SDA church) their sins.

Our time is very short brethren. The four blood moons have already been given  we must use any and all methods to reach our brethren. If God has called some to do the siege, let them. Let us not be found as a hater of those who stand in the “gate”(Amos 5:10).