Memorandum for publication by all means
To the servants of Jesus Christ scattered throughout the earth
Rosh Hashanah 2012
After Saul died for his unfaithfulness, mighty men of valor from every tribe “came to Hebron with a loyal heart, to make David king over all Israel; and all the rest of Israel were of one mind to make David king” (1 Chr. 12:38). So it will be, when the Lord consumes the lawless one with the breath of His mouth and destroys him with the brightness of His coming (2 Thess. 2:8), that every knee will bow and every tongue will “confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Phil. 2:10, 11). In the darkest hour at the end of this age, all the tribes of the earth “will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory” (Matt. 24:30), and He shall be established as King of kings and Lord of lords over all the earth (Rev. 17:14; 19:16).
The Kingdom Curriculum Project is designed for equipping the saints to “run with endurance the race that is set before us” (Heb. 12:1) that we may be “counted worthy to attain...the resurrection from the dead” (Luke 20:35) and the kingdom of Christ (Rev. 20:4-6).
Jesus taught us to pray, “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven” (Matt. 6: 9, 10). Our Lord acknowledged that “all the kingdoms of the world and their glory” are currently in the hands of those who serve the devil (Matt. 4:8, 9). The earth is overrun with rebel forces. But He commanded us to “seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness” (6:33). It is essential, therefore, to distinguish between things which pertain to Satan and things which pertain to God. Our hearts, minds, and lives belong to the kingdom of God - the realm in which His will is fulfilled. We are under siege at this time, but victory is “near, at the very doors” (Matt. 24:33-35).
The Kingdom Curriculum Project is about disentangling ourselves from the enemy’s web of deceit that we may worship the Father in spirit and truth (John 4:23). We seek to know and do the will of God. “For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the working by which He is able even to subdue all things to Himself” (Phil. 3:20, 21).
“Curriculum” is the Latin word for running. The Kingdom Curriculum Project aims to set forth and pursue courses of study and action which may be followed by the faithful remnant of God’s people so as to finish the race with joy (Acts 20:24; 2 Tim. 4:7). The LORD said to the prophet Habakkuk, “Write the vision and make it plain on tablets, that he may run who reads it” (Hab. 2:2). While working out the details of the vision through continual research and development, we intend to provide executive summaries and simple action plans for saints enduring fiery trials of their faith.
Times and Seasons
Among those who “came to David at Hebron to turn over the kingdom of Saul to him, according to the word of the Lord,” were “children of Issachar who had understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do” (1 Chr. 12:23, 32). To run with endurance, we must pace ourselves according to the historical circumstances of the race set before us. Wisdom in this matter is freely available from God (James 4:5).
The disciples came to Jesus privately on the Mount of Olives and asked Him, “When will these things be? And what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?” And Jesus answered them (Matt. 24; Mark 13; Luke 21). Then forty days after His death, burial, and resurrection (just before He was taken up from them into heaven), they asked Him again, saying, “Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” And He said to them, “It is not for you to know the times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority. But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth” (Acts 1:6-8).
Thus, on the Day of Pentecost when God began to pour out His Spirit on all flesh, Peter stood up and gave the people an understanding of the times according to the Scriptures. Now when they heard Peter proclaim that God had made Jesus, whom they crucified, both Lord and Christ, “they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, ‘Men and brethren, what shall we do?’ Then Peter said to them, ‘Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call’” (Acts 2:36-39).
Now in the twenty-first century of the Christian era, the gospel has already been preached throughout the earth and the enemy is coming in like a flood (Is. 59:19; Matt. 24:39) “having great wrath, because he knows that he has a short time” (Rev. 12:12-17). So it has been appointed to the saints of this day – all who have turned from our wicked ways, who have been baptized in the name of Jesus Christ, and who have received the gift of the Holy Spirit - to know the times and seasons of the end of the age. The Kingdom Curriculum Project will highlight and provide access to studies which advance our scriptural understanding of the current transition.
At this stage in the unfolding of God’s plan, what are we called to do? How can we endure to the end and be saved (Matt. 24:13)?
Assessment of Situation
When asked about the end of the age by His disciples, Jesus said: “Take heed that no one deceives you” (Matt. 24:4). Deception is the standard operating procedure of the present world system. The devil “is a liar and the father of it” (John 8:44). He “does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy” (10:10). Yet, “Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light” and “his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works” (2 Cor. 11:14, 15).
Six thousand years of systematic efforts to corrupt, control, and finally destroy every man, woman, and child on earth are presented as plans for a glorious new world order of peace, prosperity, and safety for all. The devil’s chief henchmen in this evil plot are rushing to completion a network of underground cities and bases (Is. 2:19; Ezek. 33:27; Rev. 6:15) in hopes of riding out the global economic collapse, war, famine, and pestilence they themselves have instigated to rule a paradise of their own making. These “elites” are ensuring their own destruction (Rev. 19:17-21). By extreme acts of defiance against God, they have marked themselves for extreme judgment (Matt. 25:46; Heb. 10:29).
How can humankind survive the horrendous attacks against all life being committed by the richest and most powerful people on earth? Psalm 37 says, “Do not fret because of evildoers, nor be envious of the workers of iniquity, for they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither as the green herb” (v. 1). “Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for Him…For evildoers shall be cut off; but those who wait on the LORD, they shall inherit the earth…the meek shall inherit the earth, and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace” (v. 7, 9, 11; Matt. 5:5).
Thus says the LORD: “Stand in the ways and see, and ask for the old paths, where the good way is, and walk in it; then you will find rest for your souls. But they said, ‘We will not walk in it.’ Also, I set watchmen over you, saying, ‘Listen to the sound of the trumpet!’ But they said, ‘We will not listen.’ Therefore hear, you nations, and know O congregation, what is among them. Hear, O earth! Behold, I will certainly bring calamity on this people, even the fruit of their thoughts, because they have not heeded My words, nor My law, but rejected it.” (Jer. 6:16-19)
The present world system is characterized in God’s word as “Babylon the great”. A voice from heaven is saying, “Come out of her, my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues” (Rev. 18:4).
Great calamity is coming in our day – “great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be” (Matt. 24:21). Rebellion against God is the cause of it. Heeding God’s words and His law and walking in the good way is the remedy whereby the meek shall overcome the wicked one and enter the kingdom of Christ.
In simple terms, what is the good way?
Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6).
Elementary practical guidelines for a life “hidden with Christ in God” (Col. 3:3) can be found in the lives of Adam and Eve before they sinned, in Jesus’ life in Nazareth before beginning His public ministry, and in biblical descriptions of life in the millennial kingdom.
The Good Way
“The LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden, and there He put the man whom He had formed…the LORD God took the man (Adam) and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it” (Gen. 2:8, 15). God’s people are caretakers of the earth and one another.
Satan’s people are liars, thieves, and abusers. While presenting themselves as environmentalists and social benefactors, their actual modus operandi is to rape and pillage the whole earth and every other planet they can get their hands on.
They hate both the Son and the Father (John 15:24). Jesus said, “You will be hated by all for My name’s sake” (Matt. 10:22; Luke 21:17). “They will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake” (Matt. 24:9). “But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you” (Matt. 5:44; Luke 6:27, 28).
The apostle Paul said, “Even to the present hour we both hunger and thirst, and we are poorly clothed, and beaten, and homeless. And we labor, working with our own hands. Being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we endure it; being defamed, we entreat. We have been made as the filth of the world, the offscouring of all things until now” (1 Cor. 4:11-13). Likewise, “Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need” (Ephesians 4:28). God’s people are workers and givers. After visiting the temple in Jerusalem when He was twelve years old, Jesus went down with His parents “and came to Nazareth, and was subject to them” (Luke 2:41-52). Jesus worked with His hands as a carpenter, providing for His own household and community (Is. 58:7; 1 Tim. 5:8). This is the good way of the cross which leads to everlasting life.
In the millennial kingdom,
Many nations shall come and say, “Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; He will teach us His ways, and we shall walk in His paths.” For out of Zion the law shall go forth, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. He shall judge between many peoples, and rebuke strong nations afar off; they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more. But everyone shall sit under his vine and under his fig tree, and no one shall make them afraid; for the mouth of the LORD of hosts has spoken. (Micah 4:2-4) “In that day,” says the LORD of hosts, “Everyone will invite his neighbor under his vine and under his fig tree” (Zech. 3:10).
So it will be well for servants of Jesus to get rid of TVs and drugs, get out of cities, get out of debt, and work to provide wholesome food, water, and shelter for our households and communities as witnesses to the goodness of God until He comes in power and glory to restore all things.
Don Benson, Ph.D., M.Div.
P O Box 113, Southern Pines, NC 28388