We received this letter:
My husband and I have been reading various writings by you and Paul for the last few years, and have never been offended by anything we have read; rather we have always been uplifted and encouraged to find other like-minded worshipers of the God of Israel.
Recently, I referred your website to a friend, who found caution (and I agree) with the following words penned by you:
“Come, submit to me, follow me and you will know that I speak the truth (by the grace of God because I am a mere man saved from sin myself), because you will find rest, peace, purpose, prosperity.”
Would you mind taking the time to explain to us what you mean by the above exhortation? As I read and understand the Scripture there is a mutuality of submission that is required… we are to submit to one another in love… as iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. It seems there is a risk of “control” based upon the exhortation to “submit” with any group which follows a single man as opposed to having a plurality of elders in the fellowship. OTH, how does an Apostle proceed when all around him are new converts? The apostle Paul said,
Imitate me, just as I also imitate
Paul also said, earlier in First Corinthians,
1Co 4:15 For though you might have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet you do not have many fathers; for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel.
Therefore I urge you, imitate me.
Paul would appoint elders before he moved on in his travels.
My friend who is a seeker of truth hasn’t reached any conclusion about “The Way of Truth” as of yet, but he has found your request for people to “submit” somewhat troubling in terms of its tone, if nothing else. Writing is difficult to understand sometimes, and may be prone to misinterpretations which might not come about in a personal conversation.
Therefore, I/We very much look forward to your response.
Hi Anna, Paul here.
We received your letter and Victor is in the process of replying to it. I plan to do so as well. The question and matter raised is a very important one, which needs to be answered in completeness, not only for your friend’s and your sakes, but for everyone’s. I daresay there is hardly a more critical matter for the believer today.
In the meantime, there are some writings on our site that are helpful to point you in the right direction. We recommend:
Diabolical Doctrine “All believers have equal authority and status.”
We will be in touch soon, Lord willing.
Anna’s reply #1:
Thanks so much for your quick response and interest in addressing my/our question.
We (my friend and I) agree that all believers don’t have equal authority and status, especially in regards to making a petition (the prayers of a righteous man avail much). In this light we see that the primary purpose of authority is to set people free; it is primarily authority over the Kingdom of Darkness, to deliver and heal, etc, and not primarily authority over people (authority to serve rather than ask for or demand/require submission).
Also, even in the case of those given the most authority (prophets and apostles, presumably), this is given to a plurality of people throughout the world.
In this current move of YHWH, we believe that He is endowing a few to several hundreds of men (and women/couples, presumably) with a very large amount of authority: We think that you and Victor may very well be two of those who walk in the narrow way of the truth, hence given the authority to serve and help set others free, as it is truth that sets men free.
In this regard, we find no precedence set by Yashua or any of the disciples in regards to them asking or demanding of anyone to submit.
Looking forward to your thought-provoking response, in truth,
Anna’s reply #2:
Only last week, I commented to my husband that if anything happened to him that I would search high and lo for at least one other follower (true Israelite) who follows the God of Israel as do we. To that end, I expanded my thought and said something to the effect, “I’d probably look up Paul and Victor — I don’t know anyone else who believes / worships like us as do they, and at least fellowship once a week with them.”
After reading Victor’s papers tonight on “Iniquity” and “The Big Lie Exposed” I now no longer feel the same — in fact, I feel very disheartened.
If Victor has confidence that he teaches truth, and I believe he does, why does he write such papers trying to justify his stance for requesting submission? He sights many OT scripture, yet completely ignores Yashua’s example that the greatest amongst any group of worshipers of YHWH is the one who humbly serves.
As a medical doctor, I have learned that requiring my patients to “submit” to any of my many prescriptions for healing (and I employ only natural remedies taught to me by the [Ruach ha-Kodesh)] is not only futile, but not in keeping with the heart of the [Ruach ha-Kodesh] within me. In serving, I find it is only my responsible to speak the truth — what one does with that truth is simply up to him or her.
Victor seems to be lacking in maturity on the matter of delivering truth with humility and a heart-to-serve; I wonder if he is even teachable in this regards, and that saddens me a bit.
God’s business is serious business. He is serious with us, and He will not permit our being lackadaisical with Him. “Behold both the goodness and severity of God.” How can we not be serious, sober and vigilant in all things?
“I returned and saw under the sun that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, nor yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favor to men of skill; but time and chance happens to them all” (Ecclesiastes 9:11 MKJV).
We are called to do right because it is right, whether pleasing to anyone or not. We are here to choose the successful and true right, the one and only kind of right there is, and not what we ignorantly and foolishly imagine and choose to be right, in that it is selfishly advantageous.