Do not be conformed to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may discern what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God.
Prepare: Use The Bible As The Guide
The Bible gives us instruction in the book of Deuteronomy as to how we should train our children and grandchildren by our continuous relationship with them throughout the day. While these instructions were given to the people of Israel via Moses thousands of years ago when man was living in a primitive agrarian setting, that environment for man did not change much until about 1850. We have a very unusual situation in that the daily routine of man changed very little over a period of about three or four thousand years, and then we had in a comparative sense, a very rapid change in only 150 years.
The Bible tells us in Romans 12:2, “Do not conform to this age, or this world…” in other words, don’t act like the people of the world. The Bible furthermore admonishes us to be “transformed by the renewing of your mind.” The Bible continues by saying that that is what is pleasing to God.
We find ourselves in the 21st Century, with what most of us America would agree is the most prosperous country in the world, and we benefit from progress that has occurred over the past 150 years. Yet, with all our supposed prosperity, we find ourselves with enormous problems. Our federal government is nearing the 20 trillion dollar debt level, we have purposely killed more that 50 million unborn babies in about 50 years, the number of unwed mothers has been growing rapidly for the past few decades, Jesus Christ is not welcome in our government-run schools, and these are just a few of the barometers indicating we are a people who has been ignoring God’s instruction in His Word, especially as He has stated in Romans 12:2.
Remember God tells us to renew our minds. Mind control is the issue. While this book describes several things in American culture that adversely affect mind control, most are related to these two, government schools and urban living. It is the author’s view that we need serious adjustments in our daily lives if we expect to be obedient to God’s instructions.
Why I Wrote This Book
It should be obvious by the title of this book that Romans 12:2 is a Scripture that has an overarching allusion as to the contents of this publication. That is true, but the initial incentive had more to do with my intent to warn family members about an apparent economic collapse that is coming to America, even the world. I began writing, on a weekly basis, letters/short essays giving background and suggestions as a way to prepare. These letters were sent to the five grown men/heads of household of our three sons and two daughters.
Much of what I wrote had to do with the value of living in rural America, particularly on a farm, as a means of lessening the impact of a serious economic collapse. Raising one’s own food is a major component, yet not the only important security measure rural living provides.
My parents and my wife’s parents lived through the Great Depression years as young adults, and lived their entire adult lives in a frugal manner, influenced by two salient factors, in my opinion. First, all four were raised on farms. Secondly they knew hardship from economic collapse. I heard a lot of stories from my parents that, to this day, affect my attitude concerning self-reliance and preparing for potential crop failure, as it were, and other disasters
While I spent about 20 years in four different college towns, I have spent most of my life on the very farm where I now reside. In contrast, none of our children and their spouses spent their entire childhood living on a farm. Most have spent no time living on a farm. All live in major cities. (Dallas, Kansas City, Virginia Beach and Orlando) Their lack of a rural background made it difficult for me to paint a picture showing the relative security found by living in a rural area compared to city life.
When writing letters to my family members concerning being prepared for imminent danger in the future, I was aware our problems in America have a definite spiritual component. Therefore, much of my study focused on what the Word of God says. In the process, with my natural desire to ask the “Why?” questions, I desired to learn why America got in trouble in the first place. In essence, most all problems result, at least indirectly, from actions of devious evil men who desire control over others. The primary avenues for this control are through commerce, banking, and education. Furthermore is easier to accomplish this on an ignorant people. Incidentally, I am aware that “uninformed” or “low information” are more polite descriptions than “ignorant.” I will add that one method of keeping people dumbed down is to use distractions.
Anyway, things I learned pulled into focus ideas about relationships Christians should have to God, and to their family members, plus the fact that the environment where people live, learn and work most likely has a tremendous effect on mind control. In more recent years I have become very doubtful that God ever intended for man to live in crowded cities. The first Scripture below describes the responsibility God gave Adam.
The Lord God took the man and placed him in the garden of Eden to work it and watch over it. (Genesis 2:15)
The next Bible verse might accurately describe the attitude of many who survived the Great Depression, and mistakenly thought their hardships came because they lived on a farm.
Isn’t mankind consigned to forced labor on earth? Are not his days like those of a hired hand? Like a slave he longs for shade; like a hired man he waits for his pay. (Job 7:1)
Following the flood, God gave Noah this command.
And God blessed Noah and his sons and said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth. (Gen 9:1) The people, however, settled in the plain of Shinar, And they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city and a tower with its top in the sky.” (Gen 11: 2-4)
Summarizing my interpretation of the three Scriptures and connecting that with the attitudes of modern man is as follows:
- God said, work and take care of the garden
- Man doesn’t like physical labor
- Cities have the lure of a better life
Large cities, like politics tend to attract people who like to gain and exercise control over other people. Urban residents, by nature of how cities are structured, are very much dependent on other people, and thus vulnerable to would-be tyrants. The city builds the street that gives them access to their grocery store, for example. The roads are also necessary for the large trucks to bring food into the city. The truck driver does not grow food, so the food must come from a distribution center. The people at the distribution center do not grow food either. It goes on, and on, and on, and that’s just for our dependence on food. Other things range from trash pickup, and police protection, to water flow out the faucets, heat on a cold day, or the AC that was not available when Job 7:1 was penned. Remember this, dependent people are more easily manipulated than those who are more independent (of the power elite).
Let me insert some current, real life examples about farm life and self-reliance. Today it is January 6, 2014. Tonight is to be the coldest day of the winter thus far. Wind chills tomorrow are predicted to be 20+ below zero. I just heard two minutes ago that the county public schools would be closed tomorrow. Some people, students and staff will have a day off, and will likely sleep in. By contrast, I made some extra rounds late afternoon in preparation for tomorrow’s cold temperatures. I’ll be back out early tomorrow as a follow-up. I had six different locations to check/secure to insure water pipes will not freeze and certain animals will have drinking water. I want my chickens, sheep and kenneled work dog to have water, and I want my own water to flow. I also had some vegetable plants in a cold frame that needed extra protection. I checked and secured some home canned food in glass jars that need to be protected from freezing temperatures. My wife and I carried some extra (beyond normal) firewood into the house in late afternoon, wood that I cut here on the space God has allowed us to tend. I didn’t mind, it’s a matter of life on the farm. Frankly, I’m glad some bureaucrat sitting behind a desk somewhere is not in charge here. One more thing; I just heard that the power is out at a dairy farm several miles from here. If the dairyman is without power for long tonight, it could spell real trouble, but you know what? … I’m betting the man has a backup plan… it is a part of being prepared, as near as possible, at all times on a farm.
The Father/son relationship is key. The Bible says man is responsible for teaching his sons and his grandsons. A man and his properly taught descendants will theoretically learn to avoid conforming to the world, and will insulate themselves by renewing their minds. In my opinion, the farm life environment is ideal for meeting God’s commands. At least, the father has more opportunity to teach his son. In contrast, urban life can more easily provide conditions that lead to mind control (example, TV and other electronic gadgets) such as we now see throughout America. This key, the father/son relationship, has been seriously compromised by factors as discussed in the book, because too many other influences are positioned between father and son, and between The Father and his sons. The foundation for the messages in this book comes from Romans 12:2 whereby the Bible tells us: Do not be conformed to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may discern what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God. This, of course, suggests that in order to have discernment as to God’s will, you must first have your mind renewed, and thus this should help you avoid conforming to this age.
From that foundational message in Romans 12:2, we learn what God’s Word, the Bible, has to say about how fathers should, at all times, be teaching their children. Scripture in Deuteronomy shows us those instructions.
It’s interesting how we see history through the time period in which we live, and tend to pay little attention to what came before. We sometimes fail to understand the precursors to the changes we personally witnessed. The purpose here is to give a brief overview, and perhaps add one or two elements you hadn’t thought about previously.
Many people would agree that the breakdown of the family has been a major contributing factor to the current problems in society. While that is true, we must ask the question, “What caused the breakdown of the family?”
Many cite taking prayer and the Ten Commandments out of the public schools as a beginning to the breakdown of the family. Some say it was the governmental subsidies to unwed mothers. Some say the women’s liberation movement. Some say sexual perversion in general. Some say it was when the wife/mother left home to take a job.
Eleven whole chapters in this book outline the adverse factors that have affected father/son relationships. I use the father/son designation rather than parent/child simply because the Bible does so in the Scriptures found in Deuteronomy. When we study the lifestyles of people since the time of Moses, we find that some key factors changed very little for a period of nearly 3000 years. In my opinion, there have been two primary changes during the past 150 years that have contributed most to our dilemma, conforming to this age. Both of these changes are precursors to destroying father/son relationships. Or perhaps I should say, the separation of fathers and sons ultimately led the mind control of generations to follow. As pointed out in the Prologue of this book, the shift from farm to urban living is one precursor. The second major factor has been the separation of children from parents by the government controlled school system. While this book outlines 11 factors, most of the last nine are the result of the first two,
(1) the move from farm to city, and
(2) the training in government schools.
Acquiring knowledge about those changes should help us discern what is good, pleasing and perfect in God’s will for our lives, and give us some direction as to how we can make some necessary adjustments as believers in the Word of God.
This is the first of several posts of a book I began writing about four years ago. From that time until now, October 2017, events in this country and the entire world have seemed to spiral downward and away from God’s direction in the Bible. This rapid change has compelled me to post the book online.
Also, I call your attention to the image of the school bus with an urban setting in the background. Our granddaughter, Lia Lloyd, a gifted artist, painted that while still a high school student. My thanks go out to her, as she did much to paint an introduction to this writing.
I would also like to thank our son, Mark, for using his talent to put the text at the top of Lia’s painting.