John Steward of Jesus
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The "True Owner"

June 4, 2007
(Posted at HisCalledOutAssembly)

Greetings to all readers in the name of the Creator and His Messiah.

I am writing, brother Robert, because you have been patient,
considerate, and pointed in your dialog. You deserve my best response.  Yet I hesitate because I realize I make no pretense of definitive answers to these questions. Yet the practical implications require that we keep seeking wisdom. May Our Father use all of us to find more wisdom together.

As I reflected again today on the matter of who is the "true owner" of
anything, I was reminded that while the assumption of our age is that
significant questions can be answered while ignoring the Creator, the
hard reality is that no significant questions can be answered while
ignoring Him. Only the fool thinks and acts as if there is no God. The
present focus is only one more reminder.

In the final sense, only Our Father, the Creator, Yah, Yahweh, or
however we choose to designate Him, is the "true owner" of everything. The earth is His, and everything in or on it. He rules over everything, always. When we realize this, we recognize Him as the true god, as our God. Throughout history men have held up many counterfeit replacements, and called them kings, sovereigns, chiefs, Caesars, Kaisers, Czars, STATEs, emperors, and who knows what else. These words all refer to the big boss, the one in whose presence the buck stops.

It is interesting to me that all these counterfeits seem eventually to
claim that they are the "true owners" of everything, which includes
land, children, vehicles, and all other possessions. What else should
we expect when mobs of people recognize them as gods. Those who pretend to be gods must know in their hearts that if they are even to try to protect and provide for people, they must have everything under their control. Only a claim to be the "true owner" permits this. Of course, it's a silly, stupid, wild, blasphemous, arrogant, and deceitful claim. But such is the record of human life on earth.

Those who have made such claims in history seem to have realized from the record of their efforts that it seems to be almost impossible for one finite creature to acquire and hold the claim to be the god of all the earth. Those who have tried have often spent a lifetime in the effort, and have failed more often than succeeded. Probably for this reason they have developed a tradition of claiming to be the god of only a geographically defined portion of the earth, and then recognizing and even helping to defend the claims of the "gods" of other parts of the earth. The effect is the same as the division of a territory by those who choose to prey on people in many illegitimate
ways. Such seems to me to be the way of life among the kingdoms of the world. They recognize each other's claims of ownership, but will not openly recognize the claims of the One True Owner, at least not openly in ways which acknowledge the implications in the lives of those who live as stewards under that One Owner. Whether they recognize His claims in their guts is a matter worthy of continuous contemplation. As an aside on this topic, I would rather bear the light burden of wrestling with issues such as this one we are focusing on, than to bear what it seems to me must be the excruciating burden born daily by all these counterfeit "sovereigns". Can you imagine the agony of knowing that a thousand, million, or billion people expect you to take care of them? Only a wildly hallucinating fool would enjoy the prospect. "Sovereigns" who read history know what happens when the bubble is pricked, when the curtain is torn aside, the hoax is exposed, and the people are disillusioned. Little wonder that many of them have sleepless nights.

What must be emphasized is that the remedy for this litany of abuse is
not the abolition or castration of "government". We are not meant to be lone wolves, sovereign individuals, masters of our fates, captains of
our souls, independent and self-sufficient hermits. We are sheep who
need a shepherd, organs meant to function in a body. The solution is
not to get rid of "government", but to recognize that "the government"
is meant to be on His shoulders.

Our Father, the Creator, entrusts to us as stewards the use, care, and
responsibility for many of the wonderful aspects of His Creation,
including land, children, and portable possessions, all under his
guidance, direction, and provision. This is our wonderful calling as
His children. In each assignment of stewardship, one of the last
responsibilities is passing on the stewardship as He directs. Such
stewardship may appear similar to what is called "ownership", because what the steward decides affects the children, land, and goods. But the true steward knows that everything belongs to The Father, and does not appreciate insinuations that anything is under the final control of anyone else, whatever may be the claims of authority. Only those given authority by The Father have legitimate claims.

Those who recognize The Father as the "true owner" and seek to live only as His stewards face the challenge of living in two "worlds". When we are dealing with fellow citizens in His kingdom, we enjoy the wonderful simplicity of what is true, what is lawful, what is loving, and what is good. By the words of two or three reputable witnesses all matters are established. Simple people evidencing the fruits of the Spirit are qualified to serve as judges in disputes.

It is when we try to buy, sell, or trade with those in other kingdoms
that we face the challenges and ambiguities. Their sovereigns claim to
own everything in their kingdoms, and have set up restrictions on their
people in an effort to preserve their claims. The greatest difficulty
for me comes in seeking to determine the effect of actions by actors in
other kingdoms who "know not what they do". They may think they are passing "ownership", and even sign papers which say as much, but do their "sovereigns" have the capacity to negate everything their subjects may appear to do? Or do the laws of the Creator prevail if one of His people in good faith entered a transaction? I don't claim to have good answers to these questions, except that we must be wise as serpents and harmless as doves, and seek the leading of the Spirit of Truth in everything we do. My best sense is that He must lead us in each situation, and His leading may be different in various cases. He must show the way. Only He can care for us. Only He knows what is going on in each heart amid all the convoluted legalese. He alone will finally judge. And He has provided abundant evidence that He is interested in each of us in our specific situations. This is not to say that we should not continue to discuss such matters and learn everything which He may teach us through the experience. That may be His purpose.

For what they are worth, here are some of my thoughts on the specifics of this situation:

My hunch is the STATE's insistence on original copies has to do with
their realization that in dealing with people who are trying to cheat,
defraud, deceive, and steal from each other, it is one more safeguard
which they hope will somehow make it more difficult to carry out evil

The Statement or Certificate of Origin designates where the "vehicle"
was manufactured, likely specifying one of the STATEs. If we purchase a "vehicle" and take it into the kingdom of our Father, my question would be whether the "sovereigns" of the manufacturer and selling agent permit  such a transfer of "ownership" to the control of Our Father, or at least will passively ignore it if it happens. The principle of "informed consent" suggests that somewhere in the process we must make whoever is capable of receiving the information and communicating it as needed for correct process, aware that such is our intention. The formality of words and signatures on paper isn't as significant as the thoughts communicated between people if we will rely finally on the protection of Our Father.

Much that is helpful has come from the hours that others have spent
examining the meaning of legal titles, equitable titles, trusts,
security interests, etc. I must confess that I personally don't have
much stomach for pursuing these questions. Let's assume it's not my
leading. I have no argument with those who feel it is their leading. I
am more comfortable trying to understand the intentions, communications, and suggestions of those involved in the process, knowing that my Father knows the hearts of all of us and will judge us all accordingly.

May He lead all of us, and give us even greater freedom and mobility to
pursue His will and enjoy His creation.

Deeply grateful for our fellowship in Him,