1. No story illustrates the human predicament more poignantly than the story of Faust’s pact with the devil.
2. There are numerous such tales (Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus, Goethe’s Faust, Thomas Mann’s Docktor Faustus, but also The Greek Tragedies, Macbeth, and The Luck of Barry Lyndon…), and in all of them Faust, or a Faustian figure, desires prestige and/or power, and to possess this power must exchange something of even greater value, most usually his soul.
3. Although he is a clever man, he is not a wise man, and Faust arrogantly and foolishly always decides that the exchange can be made to work to his advantage.
4. Ultimately he discovers that he has been deceived: “What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, the question was asked by Yeshua, yet forfeit his soul?”.
5. The moral of the Faust story is that worldly power comes at a cost, and at a cost which exceeds the value of the thing being purchased.
6. That Faust must lose his soul to gain the things that he wants, illustrates the inversely proportional relationship Yeshua taught there is between material and spiritual prosperity:
“It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of G-d.”
“Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.”
7. We switch now from the story of Faust to the story of Yeshua (Jesus of Nazareth).
8. Yeshua is the reverse of Faust. Whereas Faust represents the man who would be as G-d, Yeshua represents the G-d who would be as man; whereas Faust strikes a deal with the devil in order in increase his worldly power, Yeshua steadfastly refuses the devil’s offer of worldly power.
9. Faust is given by the devil what he thinks he wants, but in the end becomes exactly like the man in Yeshua’s cautionary tale – he gains the whole of the world but forfeits his soul.
10. Following the reverse pathway again, Yeshua deliberately sacrifices the worldly element of himself.
11. Man is like a creature holed up in a dim enclosure situated in a meadow of light. The door of the enclosure is sealed and the windows are narrow slits through which light can barely penetrate.
12. If the enclosure could be torn down, light will pour upon that creature the windows because it is the nature of light to go wherever it encounters no blockage.
13. The man of the world, represented by Faust, mistakes the enclosure for reality and wants to build and secure his enclosure; the man of G-d, ideally represented by Yeshua, knows that the kingdom of light lies outside the enclosure.
14. This is an unpopular conception, to be ignored, countered by other less demanding scriptures, or explained away as inapplicable to the modern world.
15. But the central theme of Yeshua’s lifestyle and teaching -the unifying motif- is that there is an inversely proportional relationship between the material and the spiritual: the larger our footprint in this world, the smaller will be our footprint in the kingdom of G-d.
16. Benny Hinn:
“Years ago they used to preach, “O we are going to walk on streets of gold.” I would say, “I don’t need the gold up there. I’ve got to have it down here.””
17. Yeshua ben Yosef:
“I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of G-d.”
18. Jesse Duplantis:
“I’ve never had the Lord say, “Jesse, I think that car is a little bit too nice.” I’ve had vehicles and the Lord said, “Would you please go park that at your house. Don’t put that in front of my house. I don’t want people to think that I’m a poor G-d.””
19. Yeshua ben Yosef (to the man who said he would follow him wherever he went):
“While the foxes have holes and the birds have nests, the son of man has nowhere to lay his head.”
20. Joyce Meyer on the wealth of televangelists and owning a private jet:
“There’s no need for us to apologize for being blessed.”
21. Yeshua ben Yosef:
“Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth… but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven…”
22. Benny, Jesse, and Joyce and all contemporary “Christians” ought to reflect on the following passages and consider in what sense they are followers of Yeshua as opposed to followers of Faust:
As they were walking along the road, a man said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.” Yeshua replied, “Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.” He said to another man, “Follow me.” But he replied, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.” Yeshua said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of G-d.” Still another said, “I will follow you, Lord; but first let me go back and say goodbye to my family.” Yeshua replied, “No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of G-d.”
23. There’s no money to be made, no worldly comfort to be had, and few sincere followers to be attracted, for anyone who lives by these words. Yeshua is by them revealing that pseudo-followers are primarily attracted to the kingdom of Earth, not the kingdom of Heaven – it was true 2000 years ago, and it is more true today than at any other time in history. What the pseudo-followers of Yeshua don’t understood is that the kingdom of Earth is but a pale and fading reflection of the kingdom of Heaven, for if they did understand, they would no more waste their time on the former than they would eat dirt when there is bread available.