I found gold mine, but have had to sort through some dross. Let me explain!
In recent days I have really been enjoying the refreshing (relatively) Biblically sound Hard Men Podcast by Eric Conn. As he rightly points out near the beginning of his episode titled Men Are Made For Dominion (5th from the bottom), there are very few Biblical voices teaching and exampling masculinity and both men and church are suffering.
Indeed, there are several secular voices teaching aspects of masculinity, but they lack THE major ingredient: Vision! But, I’m getting ahead of myself.
Conn’s episodes vary in length, but this is a very pithy 20 minute tear that I have listened to three times and likely will one more time before taking a group of fathers and sons hiking next month. Conn’s message is solid and needs to be shared with these men, but with a few very solid tweaks!
He makes the case that man is made for dominion from two primary passages of Scripture – the Creation account in Genesis and Jeremiah 31. And, while I am quite familiar with the Genesis foundation for a dominion theology, my heart leaped when he first mentioned Jeremiah 31!
From Genesis he shares the truths that man is made for fruitfulness and for dominion. Man is to bring the creation into subjection through ‘work and keep.’ Man is to be ‘warrior and worker’ with both ‘sword and trowel.’
Conn explained that man without this vision and trajectory is lost, rudderless. Once one grasps the Divine calling to dominion, he is invigorated with by direction. It is exciting! Demanding!
Without saying it, Conn was casting vision, something I did with my sons a while back.
Conn shifted gears about of a third of the way into the podcast by opening Jeremiah 31, one of my favorite chapters in all of Scripture. And, while he brought truth, he only brought part of it and I was quite disappointed.
He listed seven or eight points that should make every man giddy. SIM games have nothing on the reality of what this passage spells out, but Conn entirely dodged the elephant in the room. Or, he’s never noticed it. (And, I’m challenging him to put on his ‘thinking cap.’)
My first clue that he was headed off the rails was when he opened Jeremiah 31 with something like, ‘this is dominion in the New Covenant era!’
He correctly listed and identified details of the real physical future that lies ahead, a future so bright that I cannot wait to walk it out! He listed,
- v. 16 ‘God will again make work fruitful…vocation’
- v.5 ‘Man will plant vineyards…land and vocation’
- v. 4 & 38 ‘We will rebuild cities of the faithful…cities, politics, culture’
- v. 17 ‘hopeful future, … dwell in our land, inheritance and lineage’
- v. 33 ‘law on the hearts of people…’
- v. 14 ‘we’ll have faithful pastors and pulpits…’
- v. 34 ‘promises faithful whole communities in real physical places…’
Conn specifically said, ‘rebuild the city of God.’
While all of these promises are amazing and I fully embrace them, I was flabbergasted that Conn could rip the ideas out of their context, dare to voice them as ‘real, physical promises’ and never breath the name ‘Israel,’ ‘Jerusalem,’ ‘Ephraim,’ ‘house of Israel,’ or ‘house of Judah.’ Basically, he completely ignored the context of the real physical fulfillment of the passage.
My lights, bells, and other alarms were blaring! Conn, professing manhood, was speaking from one of the richest unfulfilled prophetic passages in Jeremiah and he missed the point! The major calling of man, by the Messiah, is to Restore the Kingdom! Conn really needs to read Ten Parts In The King!
Has Conn never considered that the ‘New Covenant’ is with the house of Israel and the house of Judah? Has he ever considered that Torah is what will be written on hearts? Does he even have a clue who ‘Ephraim’ is and why God uses that name? Has he connected the events of 1 Kings 12 with the Christian church that has its own feasts, nowhere ever ordained by God or Yeshua?
Why did Yeshua say, ‘I came only for the lost sheep of the house of Israel?’ (Matt. 15:24) Or, why, when asked by the Apostles on the Mount of Olives if Kingdom Israel was to be restored at that moment, Yeshua said, ‘Go to the capitol cities of the house of Israel and the house of Judah as well as the lands where their subjects reside and tell them that redemption has come!!’ [Paraphrase of Acts 1:6-8]
My point: Conn has the edge of the message and is casting vision for the dominion mandate, but doesn’t truly grasp what Scripture says regarding the restoration of that Kingdom, with Messiah on the throne!
Most of my dear readers are very familiar with the prophets and the prophesied restoration. You know Ezekiel 37 and surrounding chapters like the back of your hand. you know that Israel, scattered because of disobedience, will be regathered, or God is a liar! There are more prophecies regarding the regathering and restoration of Israel than there are of the Messiah! SERIOUSLY!!
If this is a message you’ve never heard, then read Ten Parts In The King for a primer on what Scripture says!!
Men, you want vision? You want mission? You want a purpose so big that you cannot possibly carry it out by yourself, but the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob will take you by the hand to work toward? Get a grip on your role in the Restoration of Israel!! Understand the prophecies! Know the players in Scripture and begin to walk as a son of Israel, obedient to the Messiah who stood on Mt. Sinai and gave the Torah! Learn His ways and walk in His paths… (Isaiah 2:2-5)
I DO recommend Eric Conn’s Men were made for Dominion on his Hard Men Podcast, but I caution you to dig deeper as he failed to share the whole picture. He failed to tell you where the City of God is, where the Land is, who the people are, or what ‘law’ will be written on your heart…
Take what he teaches, understand the context, then get busy!! We have much work to do!