By Joe D. Sizemore
Text: Deuteronomy 19:14
Thou shalt not remove thy neighbour’s landmark, which they of old time have set in thine inheritance, which thou shalt inherit in the land that the LORD thy God giveth thee to possess it.
There are only about four scriptures in the entire Bible that efer to the landmark. It is really something how God would speak to them concerning these details of their life. Proverbs 22:28 Remove not the ancient landmark, which thy fathers have set.
For when they came into their inheritance, when they arrived in Canaan, their promise land, they drew their lines and boundaries.
Proverbs 23:10 Remove not the old landmark; and enter not into the fields of the fatherless.
The land of Canaan was divided among the tribes of Israel. To each family was given a plot of land to provide for their livelihood. In each of those inheritances, the plot of land that was given was theirs to keep, for it was indeed their inheritance. This was handed down from father to son, from generation to generation; it was relevant and important for their well-being. They had to keep it within their tribe. Numbers 27:1-11 gives a good explanation of them receiving this heritage:
Then came the daughters of Zelophehad, the son of Hepher, the son of Gilead, the son of Machir, the son of Manasseh, of the families of Manasseh the son of Joseph: and these are the names of his daughters; Mahlah, Noah, and Hoglah, and Milcah, and Tirzah. And they stood before Moses, and before Eleazar the priest, and before the princes and all the congregation, by the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, saying, Our father died in the wilderness, and he was not in the company of them that gathered themselves together against the LORD in the company of Korah; but died in his own sin, and had no sons. Why should the name of our father be done away from among his family, because he hath no son? Give unto us therefore a possession among the brethren of our father. And Moses brought their cause before the LORD. And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, The daughters of Zelophehad speak right: thou shalt surely give them a possession of an inheritance among their father’s brethren; and thou shalt cause the inheritance of their father to pass unto them. And thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel, saying, If a man die, and have no son, then ye shall cause his inheritance to pass unto his daughter. And if he have no daughter, then ye shall give his inheritance unto his brethren. And if he have no brethren, then ye shall give his inheritance unto his father’s brethren. And if his father have no brethren, then ye shall give his inheritance unto his kinsman that is next to him of his family, and he shall possess it: and it shall be unto the children of Israel a statute of judgment, as the LORD commanded Moses.
Some of the plots of land were larger than others, but they all had distinctive characteristics: marks or lines or stones wherewith they were able to determine where their property lines were.
So then, wherever these landmarks were established, it was their inheritance, or marked the bounds of their property. Another lesson about landmarks was in the story of Naboth, found in I Kings 21. So then it was situated so that every family owned their own plot . . . was looked upon as an ideal procedure by God Almighty to allow Moses to be led to designate those boundaries. They were defined by the stone pillars or cairns, and in some of these cases, the stones recorded the size and the importance of the estate. And to remove these was removing a man’s claim to that which was understood to be his inheritance, and it was a lawless action. It was an act against the law of Moses to move those stones in any way.
You could look at it. You could argue with it. You could say, “It’s not right,” and give it any kind of verbal abuse you wish, but you could not touch it. You could not pull it up or move it in any way. It had to stay where it was placed in order for everyone to know their line and know their place. It was a sign of evil when men dared to move these landmarks. It was a sign of evil times as well. For here we have the best inspiration of the Bible in human injunction; we have its comprehensive economics for life: Leave the landmark alone! That is the economy of the Bible. Just simply leave it alone.
When you plant your row of beans down through there, you make sure you are planting them on your property. I suppose it is one of the most common litigations in our time, and sometimes arguments with neighbors is over where the property line is. Have you ever noticed that if you mow a part of the yard that is unmarked, you mow over just a little ways just to be assured that you have covered it? And when the neighbor mows the yard, he mows over a little on your side a little bit. Everyone pressing just a little to own just a few more inches. But when the line is marked and there is a fence up, you can’t mow over. You must stay within your own boundaries.
This was true even in the days of Solomon, long before the landmarks or stone markings in the fields were thrown down. That is a common historical record — how they just went through the land and began to tear these markers down in order for men to increase their own estate. They would have their regiments or armies go throughout the countryside and knock all these stones down. Just make the whole land blend into nothing distinctive so that I can enlarge my own estate. It involved throwing down these ancient landmarks and breaking up honorable boundaries. It was confusion of the division line. If they could confuse the division lines, anybody could come along and say, “That’s my property.” And whenever, the enemy is doing his best nowadays to confuse the division lines so that you blend in with the world and cannot prove or show that you are a part of God’s heritage … for Christ inherits something back out of us. He did not bleed and die for nothing! He gets something in return for that suffering. But if there would be a confusion of the division lines . . . that’s all the enemy would like to do is to confuse the dividing lines that separates us from another property.
I want to tell you now, friend, I believe this great Apostolic Pentecostal arrangement that is found in the Word of God is very distinct; it is very clear. There is but one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all. One heaven and one hell. There is being saved or being lost. There is one formula for baptism that is in the name of Jesus Christ, our Lord. There is one way to tell that you have received the baptism of the Holy Ghost, and that is that you will initially speak with other tongues as the Spirit of the Lord gives you the utterance. What a joy, a real joy, fills my spirit when the Holy Ghost comes in! How many remembers when you received the baptism of the Holy Ghost, according to Acts 2?
How many here understand that God set up some distinct boundaries for us, saying “You are my possession, and I don’t want anyone confusing the dividing line. I don’t want you to move the landmark.” Somebody said, “Take me back to the old landmark?” Take me back to some distinct order, procedure. When the enemy would come around, and he’s always coming around, he wants to move that landmark while I’m not watching. And he sneaks back into the woods, and goes and moves it again, just pulls it up. He wants to confuse these distinctive lines. Now, in the confusion of these lines being moved, the enemy wants me to go out here and say, “I don’t know where my property is anymore. Someone has come along and moved the landmark, and now I’m confused as to where the distinction is. Now I don’t know whether to plant my beans here or over there. I don’t know if I should put a row of corn here or over there. Someone has confused the dividing line! Oh, Lord!
And if ever there was a time when false prophets are preaching their false doctrines and confusing the dividing lines, it is right now in the hour in which we live! When somebody preaches to you that it doesn’t make any difference, he has sneaked in the back door, and he’s slowly and gradually moving the landmarks.
Now here I am realizing that I am in the framework of the Word of God. If you have a revelation of who Jesus is you ought to be the happiest person in the world. If you have an understanding of the New Birth experience, you ought to be the happiest person on the face of the earth, for the enemy is fooling with the landmarks. He wants to enlarge his borders to encompass everything and everybody; that would cause us to compromise just a little here and there and confuse the dividing lines.
Now, go out, if you will, and try to find your heritage. You won’t know where it is unless you remember where it was! I’m telling you, I have come to this hour as a Jesus name, Apostolic, Holy Ghost-filled, tongue-talldn’, holiness-in-living, get-out-of-the-world kind of preacher! And I believe in the framework of the Word of God, and I am not about to compromise to enlarge the boundaries to allow the world to creep into the church. This is not the time for letting worldliness come into the church. It is time to drive worldliness out of the church and let God be God!
We are not about to fool with the landmarks. Don’t be confused about the dividing lines. There’s still a difference between the church and the world. And I want to remind you that I heard just the other day (and I’m sure that this has some character), there are those who would like to get you aside and tell you in a coffee-cookie atmosphere that holiness doesn’t mean anything anymore. And they bring their books and their tapes, trying to prove to you that you don’t have to live holy and behave holy and dress modestly and holy. And they are saying that these things don’t mean anything anymore and that we are old-fashioned. We’re so “back in the woods” that we are just about to fall off the edge because we simply believe that a man comes out of the world and changes his whole character, and they say you don’t have to change. You can go to church in your shorts. You can come as you are in any type of clothing you want, sometimes hardly covering yourself. Help me, Lord. And no one is supposed to say anything about it. No, no, no, my friend, not if you have the real Holy Ghost! There will be some division lines. The Word of God tells you to “come out of the world and be ye separate, saith the Lord.” Let me tell you, Paul never changed his message. When it came to the message of the truth, he said, “This is it. When I came to you, I did not come with man’s wisdom; I did not use the intellectual approach. I did not come with state organized systems. But when I came to you, I came in power and in demonstration of the power and Spirit of the Lord that your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.”
And I promise you that the Pentecostal church is not going to get anywhere if she incorporates more programs without power, if she incorporates more ideas without the anointing or things not relevant to the Holy Ghost. The Pentecostal church is only going to get it done by demonstration and power of the Holy Ghost. I’m telling you, don’t remove the ancient landmarks that our forefathers have set!
Now you come over here looking for the way in our generation, and you can’t seem to find the marks. The religious world says, “There are not any marks. Just do good, love your neighbor, and you will make it to heaven.” No, friend, there’s an old landmark. There is still a line. Don’t you want your children and your grandchildren to have a godly heritage? Oh, yes! How will you do it if you keep confusing the dividing lines? How are you going to do it if you come to church one week, and things are suddenly different the next week? How will you make it if the dividing lines no longer exist? Do you want that kind of gospel? Where is the dividing line?
This is the marker. Don’t you move the landmarks. If you are setting with a group of people that’s trying to disclaim the truth and trying to polish things up, saying you don’t have to live holy anymore, please get away from them, now!
Let me take your attention to the Book of Jude.
Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints. For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ. I will therefore put you in remembrance, though ye once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed them that believed not. And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day. Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire. Likewise also these filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities. [Jude 3-8]
And the very spirit—that spirit that takes hold of you that you no longer want to be subordinate to the Word and will of God . . . you will find you are in deep trouble because somebody has been fooling with the landmark.
When I talked about the heritage of our children, have you ever stopped to consider that these little children, these ones we love, they are our heritage? And he said, “I don’t want you to remove the landmark, so that the heritage will have some distinctive lines, so there be no confusion of the lines.
Some of us intend to keep this landmark where it belongs. Where is the child of God who will stand tonight and say, “I’m gonna serve the Lord so my children will know where the landmarks are and where their heritage is?” Don’t remove the ancient landmarks that our fathers have set.
The above article, “The Landmarks” was written by Joe D. Sizemore. The article was excerpted from Sizemore’s book, Hot Bread.
The material is copyrighted and should not be reprinted under any other name or author. However, this material may be freely used for personal study or research purposes.