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Discerning Dangergous "Dogs"!
“Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your
pearls before swine …” Matthew 7:6.
This instruction was given to the disciples regarding their relationships
with the religious of the day.
And he said to them, `To you it has been given to know the secret of
the reign of God, but to those who are without, in similes are all
the things done; that seeing they may see and not perceive, and hearing
may hear and not understand, lest they may turn, and the sins may be
forgiven them Mark 4:11-12 YLT.
Some believers do not want to know the truth because it would inconvenience
them and interfere with their plans.
We typically view dogs as friendly family pets and refer to them as “man’s
best friend.” However, in Bible times, dogs freely roamed the countryside.
In this wild and hungry state, they presented a constant danger to those
who encountered their fury.
Wild dogs are highly symbolic in Scripture, representing that
which is low and contemptible. When a wicked man cursed King David,
David’s General reacted, “… Why should this dead
dog curse my lord the king?” II Samuel
16:9. Paul warned
in Phil 3:2, “Beware of dogs,
beware of evil workers ”
We are not to judge people’s motives, but we are to discern
the dangerous nature of “dogs” and “swine.”
God condemned the leaders of Israel by stating: “His watchmen
are blind: they are all ignorant, they are all dumb dogs, they
cannot bark; sleeping, lying down, and loving to slumber. Yea,
they are greedy dogs, which can never have enough, and they are
shepherds that cannot understand: they all look to their own way,
every one for his gain Isaiah 56:10–11.
Solomon uses a characteristic of the dog to describe the nature
of a foolish man: “As
a dog returned to his vomit, so a fool returned to his folly” (Proverbs
To help us understand the analogy in this command, we must realize
that the nature of wild dogs and swine is different from our human
nature. They are not impressed with the jewels that we have. They
are concerned only with satisfying their physical appetites, and
they do not care whom they hurt or abuse in the process. If we
offer jewels to them, they will lunge for them, but when they realize
that they were misled by our attention to them and see our failure
to fulfil their expectations, they will trample the jewels we have
given them and turn to attack us and try to rend us.
The primary point of Jesus’ command is that we cannot give
that which is holy to one whose very nature has no appreciation
for holy things.
As we seek to share Christ and the treasures of His Word with
those around us, it is important for us to remember that carnal
Christians do not appreciate holy things; Often our offer can have
the opposite reaction; “Lest they turn and rend you” Mat
Matthew 5:6 blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after
righteousness: for they shall be filled.
Let’s purpose to discern the ability of listeners to appreciate
or comprehend the spiritual truths we want to give them, and let’s
follow the promptings of the Holy Spirit in what we share. Selected
The Law of Tresspass Offering
The theme of this issue is “integrity in fellowship and daily
A. Sin is to fall short of the mark. The consequences of which
if not confessed are far-reaching.
The soul that sins shall die Ezek 18:20.
B. Trespass is to overstep the mark and unlawfully possess another’s
property. Trespassers will be prosecuted. Iniquity is lawlessness;
Transgression is to cut across. See Psa 32:1, 2; 53:5-10.
Trespass requires reimbursement if it is to be forgiven.
Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive them that trespass against
Restitution for trespassing was required by God in every case under
(I) Lev 5:1; concealing truth. The person who withholds evidence
when demanded in the name of justice becomes a co-conspirator to
the crime. It’s known in British Common Law as “aiding
and abetting”. The legislators doubtless took this straight
out of the bible.
The swearing here does not refer to blasphemy, but the taking of
an oath as in a court of law.
To keep crime in check and protect the innocent God demanded judgment.
(2) Defilement Lev 5: 2, 3; Eph 2: 1, 5. Worldliness is when we
touch sin with our eyes ears and our hands; like thoughts, pictures,
films, books. These things defile us.
Genesis 15: When the fowls came down upon Abram’s offerings,
he drove them off. The moral here is you can’t stop the birds
from flying over your head, but you can stop them from nesting
in your hair.
(3) Making rash vows. Lev 5: 4 this is different to the act of
swearing under oath in a court of law.
To make a promise and fail to keep it is to trespass against the
Lord. A true Christian’s word is his bond.
This relates to entering into covenants, commitments, contracts,
or making vows; such as promising to support a project or a missionary,
in the name of the Lord and failing to fulfil it.
The signing a covenant, or swearing “By the help of God to
promise to do this or that etc” is not permissible, and the
Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain. This
is a snare.
Exodus 20:7 this is swearing rashly. We should never bring the
name of the Lord into the affairs of life unless we are determined
at all costs to keep our word; but even then it’s wrong.
The only covenants we are called to be party too are those that
He and He alone initiated.
Matthew 5: 33-37. James 5:12; Psa 141: 3. Set a watch before my
mouth; keep a watch upon my lips.
When Jacob fled from Esau he was met by God at Bethel where in
a state of shock he vowed a vow. Gen 28:20-2 later in Gen
31:13 God held to account for his vow.
Ignorance of Holy things Lev 5:15, 16.
God set standards under the old covenant, for giving, tithing,
dress, appearance and speech. And He has set standards for us in
the New as well. We must learn to abide by them.
Dishonesty, whether it’s practiced against men or against
God will not go unpunished.
Punishment for breaking commandments even ignorantly seemed unjust,
however much of our ignorance is wilful, therefore its sin. Man
reasons if he ignorant, he’s not responsible. That’s
Many people are perplexed regarding the story of Jephthah and
cannot accept that he offered his daughter as a sacrifice. Therefore
they seek to explain that she lived a life of virginity, their
reasoning being that God did not permit human sacrifice. This is
true, but neither does God allow His Name to be taken in vain.
The heart of the incident is that Jephthah vowed a vow unto the
Lord and said, “if thou shall without fail deliver the children
of Ammon into my hands, then I will offer her up for a burnt offering” (Read
Judges 10:29-40). Better to offer a human sacrifice than profane
the name of a Holy God.
All this is borne out by yet another scripture: “If a man
vow a vow unto the Lord, or swear an oath to bind his soul with
a bond; he shall not break his word, he shall do according to all
that proceeds out of his mouth. If a woman also vow a vow unto
the Lord, and bind herself by a bond, being in her father's house
in her youth; and her father hear her vow, and her bond wherewith
she hath bound her soul, and her father shall hold his peace at
her: then all her vows shall stand, and every bond wherewith she
hath bound her soul shall stand” Num 27:2 - 4.
Thoughtfulness and integrity are the safest paths to take. Let
our yea be yea, and our nay, without the addition of oaths and
promises with which we bind ourselves. God binds the man
who binds himself with an oath. So think carefully about what you say lest
you make a snare for yourself.
It needs to be noted that if a man swore to do evil, and
then changed his mind and did not do it, he was still adjudged guilty
and must offer a Trespass Offering. This man is at an impasse.
If he did the thing he declared, he sinned. If he did not do it
he still sinned and must offer his Trespass Offering, which means
that in the mind of God breaking a vow is more serious than fulfilling
an evil intent. In the light of this, our prayer should always
be, “Let the words of my mouth be acceptable in thy sight
Oh Lord” “And put a watch upon your lips”.
Dishonesty in Holy things:
Don’t make rash statements i.e. “I'm going to fast
every Tuesday for the next six months”.
If a soul commit a trespass, and sin through ignorance, in the
holy things of the Lord; then he shall bring for his trespass unto
the Lord a ram without blemish out of the flocks, with thy estimation
by shekels of silver, after the shekel of the sanctuary, for a
trespass offering: And he shall make amends (restitution) for the
harm that he hath done in the holy thing, and shall add the fifth
(20%) part thereto, and give it unto the priest: and the priest
shall make an atonement for him with the ram of the trespass offering,
and it shall be forgiven him”.
Dishonesty is two edged sword. Lev. v. 15-16.
It can be against God or against man. In these immediate verses,
concerning ignorance, the sins were against God. The remaining
details of the Trespass Offering were sins against man.
It should always be remembered that everything belongs to God,
and that includes man.
God is the Creator and the sustainer of all life. He is the Sovereign
Ruler of the earth. “All things were made by Him; without
Him was not anything made that was made” John
God claimed for Himself the firstborn of man and beast Exod.13:
God claimed the firstfruits of the harvest Lev.
God claimed tithes of all that man possessed including time, service,
and possessions Lev 27:30-32.
When Israel entered the Land of Promise, under the leadership of
Joshua God commanded that the first city, Jericho, should be dedicated
to Himself by fire Joshua 6.
In the New Testament He has claimed much more because, because
He has given man much more.
He has given Himself, He asks that we should give ourselves to
Him in return; but man has ever been slow to give to God the things
For example His invite to sit and sup with Him at His Table Rev
3:20. Instead we have pushed it aside and ignored His invitation.
The last supper was more than an incident that took place on that
fateful night, it was a precedent set up for us to follow. “Do
this in remembrance of Me”
Ignorance is not bliss. This is a trespass and God will not hold
the trespasser guiltless.
Will a man rob God? It may be true that we are no longer obligated
to tithe in the manner of Israel, but the Malachi question is as
applicable today as is was 3500 years ago.
We could rightly ask today as they did in the days of Malachi, “will
a man rob God” and the answer would still be the same-yes,
even though he is ignorant in his understanding of holy things.
God is robbed when we fail to give Him that one day in seven for
worship and quiet meditation. He has given us six days and asks
that we give Him one. Is He asking for too much? As a nation we
have robbed Him of that day in the pursuit of pleasure
so how can we expect His blessing? The curse causeless will not
come. We are unquestionably cursed as nations; but what about ourselves
God is robbed of our presence.
God is robbed by our lust for money.
God is robbed by our selfish indulgence.
God is robbed by our lack of concern for the less fortunate.
We steal His time to pursue our pleasures; to engage in commerce
and sport seven days a week, in lieu of fellowship.
I’m talking about Christians?
The following instructions are with regard to more profitable ways
in which to serve Him.
When you give? Not “if”
When you pray? Not “if”
When you fast? Not “if”
He expects us to do each of the above; but to do them in secret.
Mathew 6:6 when you pray, enter into your closet, and after you
shut the door, pray to your Father in secret; and your Father which
sees in secret will reward you openly.
Ephesians 6:18. Praying always with all prayer and supplication
in the Spirit; watching with all perseverance and supplication
for all saints. Even Paul solicited personal prayer.
God is robbed when we fail to maintain His testimony before men.
The body of Christ have yielded ground on every front to the Devil
by of our lack of interest in His will.
We have failed to support God's Kingdom because our abysmal ignorance
of its importance to Him as well as ourselves.
Haggai 1:11 and so He called for a drought? Are we the victims
of Divine resistance? Absolutely we are.
And I called for a drought upon the land, and upon the mountains,
and upon the corn, and upon the new wine, and upon the oil, and
upon all which the ground brings forth, and upon men, and upon
cattle, and upon all the labour of the hands.
He taught us to say “Thy Kingdom Come”, and to prayerfully
promote His Kingdom wherever we are; in particular by opening our
homes to one another and “commemorating Him” around
two elements “bread and wine” as we share Christ together.
We are robbed when the ascension gifts He sent us are ignored.
Luke 13:35 Behold, your house is forsaken. And I tell you, you
will not see me until you say, 'Blessed is he who comes in the
name of the Lord! Eph 4: 11-12.
God is robbed when we withhold our worship, the fruit of out lips
which is due to His Holy Name.
He is robbed when we neglect the study of His Word. What is done
today amounts to nothing more than a constant asking God
for favours, and rarely giving anything in return; such as our obedience, gratitude,
spiritual praise, and worship to the Father? John 4: Heb 13:16.
As a result our want has come upon us like an armed man, and like
the thief that Satan is we have allowed him to rob us, and to inflict
us physically and spiritually. There are many reasons for our spiritual
poverty. Are we honest with our time, our possessions, our abilities,
and our activities?
Do we take seriously our responsibility as good Samaritans with
regard to our neighbours?
As I write I know families supposedly “Spirit filled” whose
sons live under their roof with their girlfriends with their permission
This behaviour in holy things is a trespass against God that will
not go away. If you are ignorant it is because you have chosen
to be that way. God has made every provision for our instruction
in righteousness and holy living.
Ignorance: And if a soul sin, and commit any of these things which
are forbidden to be done by the commandments of the Lord; though
he wist it not, yet he is guilty and shall bear his iniquity.
Provision has been provided under the new covenant for repentance
and confession that we may receive forgiveness, and readjust our
Heb 13:10. We have an altar which those who serve the tabernacle
have no right to eat. At this altar of sacrifice all business with
God is transacted. He has promised to meet with us here, and no
What about you’re Altar? God has left us in no doubt as
to what the nature of our relationship with Him is founded upon
when He said in Psalm 50:1 “gather my people together those
that have made a covenant with me by sacrifice”. Sacrifice
is central to everything we possess, and all we do. We approach
God through the sacrifice of His Son and all business with God
is transacted around this holy theme. No other method is acceptable
Every offering pointed forward to the perfect sacrifice of Jesus
Christ. The lives of the patriarchs and Israel revolved around
the altar of sacrifice. Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, Joshua,
Gideon, Samuel, David all these men, under varying circumstances
raised altars. They turned times of tragic sorrow, or great joy;
of victory or defeat into opportunities for raising an altar. When
they sinned or had been overcome they always returned to the altar.
These men were always building altars. And so should we, for we
too have an altar.
As well as being a place to meet with God it stands for the benefits
of the death of Christ. Paul also goes on to compare the sacrifice
of animals to that of Christ; the animals being burnt without
the camp, prefigures Christ being crucified outside the gates
of Jerusalem. From Moses time careful instructions were given
for the raising of private altars. It was not just ceremonial;
it was central to everything.
The whole nation camped around the tabernacle in the form of a
cross, with the Altar guarding the way to the presence of Jehovah.
Today the Mosaic ritual has been superseded, except that essential
element that the altar symbolized has remained.
When they built an altar what did it mean? At the altar they “got
back (returned) to God.” As they watched the sacrifice
being devoured by fire “they thought about
what they were doing”- and what was that? They were slaying the sacrifice
for the readjustment of spiritual things; to make a new beginning;
to worship Him for making it possible. It was made of common
earth and stones. Just bread and wine is all it takes. But the
symbolism is all powerful.
If you have read this far don’t just dismiss it by saying “it
doesn’t apply to me because I’m not under law” for
we will all stand before Him to give an account.
1 Cor 9:21 To those who are without law, as without law (not being
without law toward God, but under law toward Christ), that I might
win those who are without law. My desire is to hear Him say to
me, “Well done thou good (Godlike) and faithful servant” as
I am sure every true servant of Christ does.
Ephesians 4:25-28 wherefore, having put off falsehood, speak truth
every one with his neighbor, because we are members one of another.
Be angry, and do not sin; let not the sun set upon your wrath,
neither give room for the devil. Let the stealer steal no more,
but rather let him toil, working what is honest with his hands,
that he may have to distribute to him that has need.