Man Most High?
BABEL RISING! Page 7
From The Main Message of
Bread Upon The Waters Ministry
In the previous pages we have discussed the Learning Curve and the Three Prohibitions that God has placed on the human race. We have looked at what we are doing in terms of unity and communication. We have examined our efforts to give ourselves longer life spans, and possibly biological eternal life. We have looked at our efforts to achieve space travel, and to hopefully spread humanity throughout the universe. We have shown that these things can present a problem to God, to the point that He must intervene in history soon to stop us from doing them. If not, history will go beyond the point where a fulfillment of Second Coming Prophecy that in any way resembles general Christian expectations is possible. We have put an approximate deadline on this of about 50 years, (Note: this is not setting a date; this is an estimate based on circumstances.) and it could be much sooner. This writer seriously thinks it will be.
There is a deeper spiritual issue that underlies this situation, and it must be discussed to present a full understanding of the problem. It is the answer to yet another major question:
Why we want to do these things?
To answer this, we must start by going back to the First Commandment:
"You shall have no other gods before Me."
In this, and the Second Commandment, God outlawed idolatry for all time. Yet we know that in every time, and every place, this Commandment has been continually violated. There has been no race or culture that did not in some way practice idolatry.
In modern times, however, the open worship of idols is on the decline. Except for the activities of a few oddball cultists, and the veneration of "Mary" by Catholics, it has virtually disappeared in the West. Even in India, which has the most wide-open idolatry of any nation in the world, true belief in Hinduism is on the decline. Especially among the wealthy and educated, it is much more culture than real faith. This writer has met educated people from India who didn't really believe in anything.
But at the same time that traditional idolatry is declining, we have found a new god to worship: OURSELVES! The worship of man by man is the rising idolatry of our times. This is what humanism is about, and to a great extent, is also what the New Age Movement is really about, by way of the philosophic concept called "cosmic humanism". But it goes much deeper, and is far more pervasive than that.
What We Worship
We worship human achievement; in science and business, achievement in sports, and achievement in entertainment. In fact, it is in entertainment that it is the most obvious. When someone is called a "movie idol" or a "Rock 'n' Roll idol", there is often far more spiritual truth to the terms than the people who use them realize. Consider the candlelight vigils that are annually held outside the Graceland Mansion in Memphis, Tennessee each year on the anniversary of Elvis Presley's death. That is out-and-out worship. Believe it or not, there is actually a cult that literally worships Elvis as God. People pray to him. They even claim healings in his name! But understand that this is just "the tip of the iceberg". The entire entertainment industry is riddled with idolatry. That's what "American Idol" is about. Idolatry also shows itself in "Dancing With The Stars".
But although the idolatry is most blatant in entertainment, it is by no means limited to it. As the original "Babel Rising" manuscript was being written, there were people standing in line all night to get tickets to New York Yankee playoff games. Did you ever see people stand in line all night to get into a Church service? The worship of man by man is everywhere in our society.
In the realm of science and medicine, it isn't so obvious, but at least in the long term goals, it is definitely there. When people by the thousands stood along the roads near Cape Kennedy and cheered as a Space Shuttle went up, they were worshipping human achievements in science, and particularly in space travel. As shown already, we want to spread our civilization to other worlds, and we want to at least seriously extend our life spans, and if possible give ourselves biological eternal life. This is a subtle expression of our desire to be our own gods.
The Underlying Problem
The root of the problem goes right back to the lie of Satan in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:4 & 5):
"You shall not surely die.
For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened and you will be like God."
When Adam and Eve ate the Forbidden Fruit, they did acquire a moral consciousness, however flawed. They also acquired death. Ever since then, the human race has been on an endless quest, consciously and unconsciously, to acquire the God-like knowledge that Satan promised, but the Forbidden Fruit failed to deliver, and the eternal life we lost. The priests of ancient Egypt sought it. The Chaldean astrologers of Babylon sought it. So did the ancient Greek philosophers. Confucius and his colleagues in China sought it, and so did the Alchemists of the Middle Ages. True, some societies despaired of the quest and gave themselves up to low-brow idolatry and debauchery. (The Canaanites of Joshua's day were an example.) But in all the major civilizations there were those who sought it. In the long run of history, the quest for God-like knowledge and eternal life has survived. In the past few centuries, it has grown tremendously. Especially in our time.
The statement by the Angel Gabriel in Daniel 12:4 -
"Many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase."
- is a prophecy of the near-fulfillment of this quest that we are seeing in our time.
We are closer to achieving this goal than any of our ancestors ever dreamed of being. Computers and the Internet are part of the fruit of this quest, and they are helping us on our way. (I created this Web page with a machine that wasn't even dreamed of when I was born.) The nearer we get to achieving the goal, the greater our tendency to worship ourselves as gods becomes. But the goal will not be achieved until we give ourselves biological eternal life, and also consummate another part of the overall goal: regaining the dominion we lost.
In Genesis 1:28, God gave mankind dominion, that is, the power and authority to rule, over all the earth. But when man fell, that dominion was lost and passed to Satan (see John 12:31 and 14:30). Mankind wants the dominion back. And to fully assert that dominion, we want it not just over the earth, but over the entire universe! (This is not this writer's original idea.) It may not be the conscious idea of many people, but it has definitely occurred to some. This was illustrated in the title of a science fiction novel* that was published some years ago:
"Stars In My Pocket Like Grains Of Sand"
This requires some interpretation: "Stars", in the science fiction - space travel sense means not just the stars, but the planets that orbit them. In other words, entire solar systems. "In My Pocket" means "in my possession" and/or "under my control". "Like Grains Of Sand" means "in uncountable numbers". In other words, entire galaxies, at least.
*Don't read this book if you should see it. It is actually homosexual pornography disguised as science fiction. But this illustrates the fact that these ideas come from our sinful, ungodly fallen nature.
The human race, collectively, wants to stretch out its hand, seize control of the entire universe, and say to itself,
"This is mine! I am God!"
That is why the goal of "Star Trek" is....
"...to go boldly where no one has gone before."
And it is part of why that series is so popular.
It expresses the subliminal desire of the whole human race.
The Bible implies that we will eventually do it if God gives us enough time!
This idea now finds its clearest expression in science fiction, but given enough time, like Jules Verne's fictional submarine "Nautilus", it will find expression in fact. (The first nuclear submarine was named "Nautilus" in honor of Jules Verne.) Remember what God said in Genesis 11:6,
"...nothing they imagine to do will be withheld from them."
But no way will God give us enough time!
Eternal Life For The Human Race As A Whole
There is a further purpose to space travel that is also related to our desire to be our own gods. This purpose was, to this writer's knowledge, first noted in Christian circles by C. S. Lewis* in his science fiction novel,
"Out of the Silent Planet"
The purpose is to achieve eternal life for the human race as a whole. Mankind fears death, not just as individuals, but for the whole race. We know how many species have already become extinct (over 90% of all known species) and we are afraid that it could happen to us. Since the advent of nuclear and biological weapons, we have been seriously fearing a war that would wipe us out. Recently, we have learned that the collision of an asteroid or comet with the earth could do it to us, and so could a runway "Greenhouse Effect". But we have the idea that if we can establish enough self-sufficient colonies on enough planets around enough stars in enough galaxies, no one war or natural catastrophe could ever wipe us out, and the human race will survive forever.
Lewis expressed this in fictional form as the reason why his villain "Weston" built a spaceship and went to Mars. Toward the end of the book, though, he threw a hint so broad that it wasn't a hint, that he wrote the novel to express theological ideas that he thought were true and important but that he didn't think would be well received as non-fiction. So he took the idea seriously. So he published his ideas as fiction to plant them in public consciousness.
The late science fiction writer, Robert A. Heinlein (one of the greatest of the past century) was famous for saying,
"The earth is to small and fragile a basket for the human race to keep all its eggs in."
So he believed in the idea. And he was far from being alone. The late, great science and science fiction writer Isaac Asimov also believed in it. and there were and are others.
*To give credit where credit is due, this writer's original inspiration for the whole "BABEL RISING!" concept came from the writings of C. S. Lewis.
We Think We Can Do It!
What makes this problem most dangerous is that in the past century or so, we have developed an awareness of, and confidence in, our creative potential that people of previous times never had. We have become really impressed with what we are able to do, and really proud of it. We believe that we can achieve the goal of controlling the universe. Up front, scientists will be skeptical about what they think we can do in terms of the conquest of space and extending our lifespans, but the collective view of the general public is to believe that there are no limits to what we can do.
The idea that we can do anything we think of doing is illustrated in this photo of words emblazoned in brass on the wall of a New Age cult's headquarters in NYC.
It is also illustrated in this modern proverb which comes from the NASA Space Program:
"The difficult we do immediately.
The impossible may take a little longer."
Through these statements, mankind is subtly saying of itself,
"Is anything too hard for me?"
(Given unity, unlimited communication, and enough time.)
What God says in Genesis 11:6, coupled with the full implications of Genesis 1:27,
tells us, that given the conditions stated,
these statements are true!
At The Spiritual Level
Therefore, the most fundamental reason, the true spiritual reason, for all the effort that is being poured into scientific and medical research, and the conquest of space, is man's desire to be his own god. This is true whether or not any particular scientist or doctor has this idea consciously in mind. Most, by far, certainly do not; we are talking about what we want collectively, and for the most part, subliminally; not about what individuals consciously want, though some definitely do. As shown in the "Second Prohibition" page, unity doesn't have to be conscious unity to be effective. As anyone who has been a Christian for long knows, the Church as a whole is the Body of Christ, Jesus being the head and every Christian is a part (I Corinthians 12). Well, the unsaved world to some extent functions like a body too, more than we realize, but the head is Satan. Satan has not done too well at getting people to worship him directly, though some people do. So he is settling for getting men to worship themselves. If the "body" of mankind worships itself, and the head is Satan, then guess who is really being worshipped? When...
"the man of sin...sits in the temple of God,
showing himself that he is God..."
(II Thessalonians 2:4)
...it won't be some mythical offspring of Satan. It will be man worshipping man. Or, we might say that it already is! The true Temple of God is not some glorified rock pile in Jerusalem. It is, or God intended it to be, the human race! At least that is what we were created to be. See Acts 7:49-50 and I Corinthian 6:19. But we think we are gods, and we are trying to prove it to ourselves.
In the Garden of Eden, Satan told Eve that if they ate the Fruit of the Tree of Knowledge, they would, as individuals, become like God. Ever since then, he's been lying to us, trying to tell us that we really can do so by our own efforts*. Fallen man, with his foolish pride, wants to believe it. Satan is trying to get us to prove it to ourselves by violating the Three Prohibitions. The terrible truth is that if God gives us enough time, we will. We are closer now than we have ever been. What Satan said was not entirely false. Rather, it was the kind of lie that is called a half truth. As has been said, the First Prohibition is being increasingly violated now. The Second and Third will be soon. Unless Jesus comes first.
*Note: There is concrete Biblical reason to believe that we are in a sense gods, with a small 'g', but only Christians will ever have their full status as gods and it will be the gift of God to the redeemed following the Resurrection of the Saints when it happens.
From what the Bible says about him, Satan at this time is confined to this earth (Revelation 12:9, etc.) That's another reason why man is so confined. C. S. Lewis saw this, and expressed it in the entire science fiction trilogy that began with "Out of the Silent Planet". His "bent eldil" is obviously Satan. But if unredeemed humanity is allowed to spread out throughout the universe, we will take Satan's dominion with us. Lewis appears to have seen that, too. It was the premise of the second novel of his trilogy, titled "Perelandra". If unredeemed humanity acquires biological eternal life, Satan's kingdom can last forever. He will be able to turn the entire universe into a living hell. Literally!
No way will God allow this to happen! But as has been shown, it will happen if God does not intervene to stop it. He must intervene soon, in a big way. In Eden, He had to put cherubim with a flaming sword on guard to keep Adam and Eve away from the Tree of Life. At Babel, He had to confuse the languages. He parted the Red Sea to keep His Plan of Salvation on track. Later, He wiped out Sennacherib's army of 185,000 men for the same reason. He will do whatever He has to do to bring about the Salvation He planned and promised. We are closer to violating His Prohibitions than ever before, and getting closer every day. If we do, we will interfere with His Plan to a degree that we have never done before. He must intervene soon. He will.
This is what Christians must expect. If you understand what has been said in these Web pages, you can see that the soon Second Coming isn't just a possibility. It is mandated by circumstances.
So exactly what is going to happen?
We will explore this question in the following set of pages;
The Great Tribulation
For further insight on the subject of Divine Intervention in History,
BABEL RISING! Sets A Deadline
How God Works In History
Contact Author, William D. Brehm; email@example.com