December 05, 2021
DEAD MEN’S BONES
As the faulty Divine Council doctrine spreads, and more and more false prophets adopt the ancient heresy, novel arguments are inevitable. The pattern is not dissimilar to the emergence of the Rapture Cult in the 19th century. When the false system was first propagated, early adopters produced very dubious arguments – such as the ridiculous idea that measurements of the Great Pyramid predicted the date of the Rapture. They also came up with astrological calculations of the Zodiac, which supposedly supported the Rapture Cult doctrine.
When early Cult adherents finally got around to manipulating the Scriptures to “prove” their case, the weak arguments quickly fell away, even as more sophisticated Cultists entered into the effort to find support in the Bible. A good example of this was back in the 1830’s, when Rapture proponent Margaret MacDonald and the British church pushing pre-trib tried to identify themselves with the Two Witnesses of Revelation to support the fraudulent system. Eventually, the Cult matured, refined its doctrinal approach, and abandoned such shallow efforts. We’re now seeing a similar process with many individuals seeking to make a name for themselves (Genesis 11:4), as they argue in favor of the Divine Council.
For instance, at least one false prophet working the Spiritually barren YouTube prophecy circuit has field tested a clever argument. This “Bible teacher” is claiming that when Satan offered Jesus all the kingdoms of the world in Matthew 4:8, the fallen angel had obtained global dominion through the supposed disinheriting of the nations, when the LORD allegedly gave dominion of all the Gentile kingdoms to the Divine Council. However, the Scripture manipulator is unable to explain how the Devil swindled the alleged seventy sons of El, Baal, and Asherah out of their supposed territorial holdings.
In fact, one of the key elements of the entire Divine Council scenario claims the mystical body of “gods” is directed by Yahweh – therefore, the transfer of the dominion of all the Gentile nations into the control of Satan is indirectly saying the Devil himself is in charge of the alleged “council,” not the LORD. Thus, the proponents of the novel doctrine are still at the developmental stage where they’re contradicting each other.
Another popular minister who is teaching on the subject is a preacher named Dean Briggs. A writer of Christian fiction and novels (who has now hung out his prophecy shingle with a book called Ekklesia Rising), in his effort to provide Scriptural support for the Divine Council, Briggs actually cites from modern Bibles that are paraphrased versions of Scripture. Dean Briggs is a fan of Eugene Peterson, who is the controversial author of the abomination known as The Message, a translation that is so loosely paraphrased it could be used to prove the LORD came from the planet Krypton.
Peterson has, by the way, sunk even deeper into disrepute for his recent waffling on the subject of homosexual marriage – thereby proving that unclean birds of a feather do indeed flock together. Briggs shows his ignorance of fundamental Bible doctrine when he says that God has revealed Himself to the heathen via the “scriptures” dedicated to Baal:
In order to find Scriptural support for his promotion of the Divine Council apostasy, Briggs shopped around until he found a translation that handled Deuteronomy 32:8 the way he wanted:
“When the Most High assigned lands to the nations, when he divided up the human race, he established the boundaries of the peoples according to the number in his heavenly court” (New Living Translation, Deuteronomy 32:8).
The verse speaks of the inheritance of the nations and, as always, when you’re dealing with heirs, there is a Spiritual dimension which must be taken into consideration. For instance, when the administrators of the parabolic vineyard Christ told us they saw “the son” of the vineyard owner, the story addresses the Spiritual inheritance, in an eternal sense:
“But when the husbandmen [the vineyard managers] saw him, they reasoned among themselves, saying, This is the heir: come, let us kill him, that the inheritance may be ours” (Luke 20:14).
The parable of the vineyard is, of course, a thinly veiled tale of Old Covenant Israel, appointed to be the mediator (the “husbandmen” in the text) between the owner of the vineyard (read the Lord), and the rest of creation (the world and the Gentile balance of humanity). Obviously, the Jews did not rule the physical world consisting of the nations, but they recognized that God had placed them in that position as His chosen vessel, transmitting His life to the nations.
“I the Lord have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the Gentiles” (Isaiah 42:6).
Not only does this bizarre doctrine diminish the omniscience of God (as it has the LORD justifying His sovereign decisions through a corrupt council), it places the Holy God of heaven in the position where he is constantly interacting with unclean spirits in His dealings with mankind. For instance, Dean Briggs says the following:
“This [divine council] truth was revealed early on, and it showed up in cultures that passed down what they knew by oral tradition, and so its intriguing that there are many cultures, that have within their mythology, or their theology if you will, the understanding that God had a council of gods, with whom he worked, or that there was a council of gods that ruled things” (Truth or Tradition, God’s Divine Council, John Schoenheit, You Tube channel, emphasis mine).
This means the effort to characterize the heathen manuscripts, which describe this aberrant heavenly architecture that positions a mixture of good and bad Spiritual beings as a channel of communications between the LORD and the Gentiles, is Antichrist through and through. As we have repeatedly noted in this study, Israel, as the mediatorial sons of God, was an Old Covenant body that was specifically chosen by the LORD to precede “the only begotten Son of God,” to provide the redemptive “shadow” of the “substance” which was to occur in Christ.
”If you’re a trinitarian theologian, you might think that this is God – one part of the trinity speaking to another part of the trinity. But a large number of trinitarian theologians reject that, as taking a New Testament concept and reading it back into the old testament, that’s not what the verse is saying” (Truth or Tradition, God’s Divine Council, John Schoenheit, You Tube channel).
In other words, this Antichrist indwelled teacher is telling us that when Yahweh said “Let us make man,” it was the cluster of angelic “gods” who actually created mankind – But the false prophet tries to mitigate the impact of his non-trinitarianism by claiming the LORD supposedly provided all the divine power, and directed the activity.
This is not only the fatal flaw in the doctrine itself, the implications of how and where it is being disseminated are also at issue. Those who insist on a Scripturally sound, Trinitarian perspective, even as they post videos embracing the Divine Council, are opening Pandora’s proverbial box, as even more toxic versions of the doctrine are lined up side by side for consumption by the Christian flock.
In this regard, we cite the case of Gonz Shimura, who hosts a prophecy program called Face Like The Sun. While it’s unlikely Shimura would ever veer off to the non-Trinitarian perspective of a John Schoenheit, his unabashed embrace of Dr Michael Heiser’s version of the Divine Council makes for an easy transition to the likes of the apostate Dean Briggs, or even Brenda Mitchell’s treacherous take on the fraud that is the Divine Council.
As a venue with zero discernment, You Tube indexes and lines up all the offerings on a requested subject, and automatically runs adjacent videos on the same subject, as soon as a selected video has run its course. Thus, you can start off with what seems like a reasonable discussion on the subject of Jesus describing Himself as “the son of man,” but if you continue to watch long enough, YouTube will air a video of Charles Manson explaining how he convinced his followers, through a wordplay on his name, that he was “the son of man.”
This is the equivalent of attending a church seminar on a given subject, wherein the Devil’s representatives are given an equal footing with that increasingly rare phenomenon, the genuine Word of the LORD.
Because of the flawed nature of the YouTube forum itself, Gonz Shimura’s video on the “council” shows he is caught in the devil’s bargain in the same way as those foolish enough to follow him. Thus, Shimura now trods the same path as all the other false prophets promoting the Divine Council Paradigm. In his video, after leaning on Dr. Heiser’s scholarly credentials for his authority (he shows a picture of Michael Heiser and his beguiling book), Shimura wholeheartedly endorses the darkness of the Divine Council deception.
Manifesting the misplaced reverence for the “scholars” which plagues so many modern teachers (to say nothing of the erroneous idea we must understand the Semitic culture in which the truth of the LORD was revealed), Gonz Shimura heavily relies on Dr. Michael Heiser’s learning, rather than the supernatural discernment which can only come through the Spirit of the Lord:
“This comes from the work of Dr. Michael Heiser. He has a doctorate in ancient near East studies, he understands the Hebrew, and also the ancient culture by which the Old Testament was written” (Elohim and
As we’ve now seen in multiple examples of those who are adopting this teaching, although the doctrine has been well known in the ranks of academia for many years, the material is now being widely disseminated through the work of Dr. Heiser – who is closely associated with the Rapture Cult television ministry known as Skywatch TV. Thus Gonz Shimura is only one of many pop prophecy figures who have recently been profoundly impacted by the Divine Council Paradigm.
“What I think is clearly in the Bible, once you start looking at it, is this thing called the Divine Council. The key passage of the Divine Council worldview is Psalm 82” (Elohim and
As we addressed in Chapter 12 of the present work, Psalm 82 is the Biblical writing which contains the phrase “I said, Ye are gods,” which Jesus said applied to the glorious Spiritual nature of those chosen by God for the exalted role of his sons. On the occasion where Christ spoke of the heavenly status of Spiritual beings, he categorically directed this identification to the role of God’s sons.
“He called them gods, unto whom the word of God came…[and] the scripture cannot be broken” (John 10:35).
Recognizing the obvious Scriptural obstacle to the Divine Council theorem, when the Scripture identifies the “gods [read Spiritual beings], unto whom the word of God came” as Israel, Shimura says the following.
“At no point in the Old Testament does the scripture teach that Jews or Jewish leaders were put in authority over other nations. And actually the opposite is true, they were to be separate from other nations” (Elohim and
However, Shimura makes the same mistake all the other false prophets make, in that when God states that He has chosen Israel to interact with the nations as His ambassadors, He is addressing the Spiritual nature of Israel, as manifested in the body of Christ. Thus, when the LORD says He judges “among the gods,” as He has appointed Israel to mediate His light, clearly “Israel” is over the nations.
“And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations“ (Revelation 2:26).
--- James Lloyd
To Be Continued
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