Tag Archives: forgive

National Forgiveness

 

2016-08-06_splash-3-1190007This may seem to be a crazy concept; however, God dropped it into my spirit a few weeks ago. It is staying in the forefront of my mind quite possibly because we are in this political season. As I pondered the concept, I imagined it to be a fully developed doctrine plucked out of the rubble of our current civilization by some futuristic civilization. What my mind can’t imagine is this concept ever being acted on by the human subcultures that exist in the world today.

The act of forgiveness would necessitate a clear violation of sovereignty. Rarely do we think of ourselves as sovereign or relate to other individuals as sovereign beings. The term is relegated to members of royal families and the stuff they own as part of their kingdom. Yet that is exactly what we all are, members of God’s royal family.

Notwithstanding, we live in a reality, that is defined by our awareness of secularized social authority. These various forms include authority of family, of persons over 18 year of age, religious organizations, state and local governments, and their delegated officers. When these various entities exercise their form of authority quite often they come into conflict, and we appeal to a higher authority such as the Federal Government and God.  Therefore, it is that within the reality of our social structure, violations happen and forgiveness is needed. Many judicial proceedings are held every day to keep in-check the lines of authority and to recognize the boundaries of individual rights or what could be described as personal sovereignty.

A violation of national sovereignty could rise to the level of an act of war or a simple snub in diplomatic relations between two nations. Depending on the severity of the violation, what is required is for the collective ego of the violated nation to absorbed the incursion to its sovereignty and be willing to forgive.

What this is not, is an overlooking of an accident between allies, or an act of insurgency by one of it colonized states. What I am talking about is an unprovoked unilateral attacked on the national sovereignty by a nation with lesser or equal strategic power. What makes the situations more difficult is when the offense is witnessed by other sovereign nations. This is where a national ego arises and asserts it standing among its fellow members of nation states.

The reason I cannot imagine the concept of National Forgiveness being executed at this moment in human history is because the individual collective egos (you and me) within a nation-state are very fragile. We live in a world where the love of God for us is constantly in question by every human child. In other words, every child still requires a constant demonstration by God that they are loved. In the face of a foreign sovereign nation’s violation, the collective of individuals turn to God for justification and an overt act to save face and comfort their fragile ego. God on the other hand is looking for mature individuals, people who recognize His presence within, having the strength of spirit to absorb offense and a heart willing to forgive.

The roots of the Judaeo-Christian religion has created a system of beliefs, popular today in humanity, that God chooses to love one child more than others for the benefit of all His human children. Therefore, everyone wants blessing so they can be the path through which humanity is saved.  Everyone desires to be so enriched that others around them can’t help but notice the hand of God in their lives.  If that is not reality, wars are fought to change the status quo. It is within this traditional framework that makes forgiveness between individuals very difficult and the concept of National Forgiveness a pie in the sky fairy-tale. Can this be changed? Does hope exist?

When we examine the roots of traditional scriptural interpretation and the resulting human beliefs today, we can see some areas available for re-evaluation. Again, in the Judaeo-Christian religion three early historical stories (Cain/Able, Jacob/Esau, Ishmael/Isaac) are caught up in this dynamic of who will get God’s blessing. Even the most popular parable of Jesus, the story of the lost or prodigal son has its traditional interpretation trapped in this paradigm of blessing one and not the other.

Luke 11:13 (NKJV)  If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!”

The belief that a parent chooses to love one child over another child may be an experiential reality, from the point of view of human interaction, however it is a misinterpretation of scripture and of God’s nature to think that God would bless one child over another. This definition of dysfunctional love, even though traditional, is a gross injustice and has been used to justify one group of humans mistreating another group.

Humanity is evolving by dropping outdated traditions and beliefs that tend to keep the status quo and serve only portions of humanity. Jesus died for all and scriptural interpretation is growing in the light of what “all” means today. Concepts like National Forgiveness are on the horizon for the nation states within humanity. More and more human children are learning to recognize God’s presence within “all” and His love for “all”. Therefore, as His children mature, humanity’s evolution continues to advance.

The infinite-ness of God is clearly seen in scripture. However, the human inability to contemplate the infinite-ness of God or the infinite-ness within our personal being has causes us to hoard wealth and display it like a badge of honor creating a false reality of God’s blessings. Individual human identity has shifted its roots from the relationship with God, to its relationship with wealth, traditionally interpreted as God’s blessing. Our ability to discern God’s presence is therefore limited to the wealth we perceive.

God loves us all and God is within us all, individually and collectively.  The awareness of that truth makes individual forgiveness and national forgiveness possible.

Luke 15:28-32 (NKJV) “But he was angry and would not go in. Therefore his father came out and pleaded with him. 29 So he answered and said to his father, ‘Lo, these many years I have been serving you; I never transgressed your commandment at any time; and yet you never gave me a young goat, that I might make merry with my friends. 30 But as soon as this son of yours came, who has devoured your livelihood with harlots, you killed the fatted calf for him.’ 31 “And he said to him, ‘Son, you are always with me, and all that I have is yours. 32 It was right that we should make merry and be glad, for your brother was dead and is alive again, and was lost and is found.’”

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The Evidence of Entanglement

2012_04-15_900410_65609984 In this material world we humans are connected in very strange ways. Quantum physics is confirming many scripture verses that indicate that we truly are all a part of the human family and that we are our brothers and sisters keeper. In other words I am only free as my siblings. What we now understand from scripture and science is that our present generation can awake and choose to become empowered and set a course of freedom for our next generation.  It also means that the opposite is true and our generation can choose to pull the covers over our eyes and stay asleep thus handing down as tradition more bondage to our future generations.

 For me several questions quickly come to mind. The first, who is my brother or my sister? Secondly, can the choices of my life really free others or cause bondage to come remain them? The Old and New Testaments reveal how interrelated we humans really are. It also reveals just how powerful the individual is as well. If there is any reason to become a disciple of Jesus it is to learn how our lives can positively affect the lives of others.

 Gal 5:1 Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.

 Romans 5:18-19  Therefore, as through one man’s offense judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man’s righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life. 19 For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man’s obedience many will be made righteous.

 John 15:12-13 This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.13 Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.

 Every human since the death and resurrection of Jesus has been empowered to use love, the greatest force on earth to bring about liberty to others. We humans are never more like God our heavenly Father as when we look into the chaos and darkness in our fellow human’s heart and speak light and life to that heart. But too often we grab the easy scriptures of war and try to destroy darkness instead of just turning on the light.

 Repentance and Forgiveness are the two edges on the sword of light. Liberty is simply a state of mind but its effect on our perception creates the very material world we live in. The mind of Jesus was at liberty from all material entanglements and scripture testifies that He overcame this material world.

 Today many humans remained separated from God in their thinking even though the work of Jesus as the Christ has been complete for over two thousand years. Romans 8:31-39 clearly illustrates that all obstacles between God and humans have been removed and that from God’s point of view we are all His children. But many religious interpretations still perceive human reality as separate from God and bound to this material world and only if we meet the requirements of organizational by-laws can we obtain liberty and become one with God.

 If forgiveness and repentance has the power to free us then why do so many remain entangled by an offence that has already been removed?

 Matthew 6:14-15(NIV) For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15 But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.

 Matthew 18:35(NIV) This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother or sister from your heart.”

 2 Corinthians 2:5-10(NIV)  5 If anyone has caused grief, he has not so much grieved me as he has grieved all of you to some extent—not to put it too severely.6 The punishment inflicted on him by the majority is sufficient.7 Now instead, you ought to forgive and comfort him, so that he will not be overwhelmed by excessive sorrow.8 I urge you, therefore, to reaffirm your love for him.9 Another reason I wrote you was to see if you would stand the test and be obedient in everything.10 Anyone you forgive, I also forgive. And what I have forgiven—if there was anything to forgive—I have forgiven in the sight of Christ for your sake,

 Luke 17:1-4 (NLT) One day Jesus said to his disciples, “There will always be temptations to sin, but what sorrow awaits the person who does the tempting! 2 It would be better to be thrown into the sea with a millstone hung around your neck than to cause one of these little ones to fall into sin. 3 So watch yourselves! “If another believer sins, rebuke that person; then if there is repentance, forgive. 4 Even if that person wrongs you seven times a day and each time turns again and asks forgiveness, you must forgive.”

 Luke 3:8-9 Prove by the way you live that you have repented of your sins and turned to God. Don’t just say to each other, ‘We’re safe, for we are descendants of Abraham.’ That means nothing, for I tell you, God can create children of Abraham from these very stones. 9 Even now the ax of God’s judgment is poised, ready to sever the roots of the trees. Yes, every tree that does not produce good fruit will be chopped down and thrown into the fire.”

 My goal for this post is to overwhelmingly bring to the front of our consciousness that we have already been empowered to change the world. This is not a job for our Priest, Pastor or Spiritual Leaders this is our job as humans, and children of God. At some point in our existence of reality it will be made clear that each of us has no excuse. Remaining asleep or becoming awake will produce fruit or evidence that each of us will have to live with as we proceed on into eternity.

Therefore I want to encourage us all to take responsibility and show forth the evidence of repentance and forgiveness. We all must awake to the fact that we are entangled as humans and we are all members of the same human family. It is easy to remain asleep and hide behind the borders of our skin. But as the interpretation of scripture and the exploration of science continue to make truth more understandable, we must be willing change our perceptions and shed some old traditions.  

 God has given each human a gift through the life of Jesus.

 John 20:22-24 And when He had said this, He breathed on them, and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.”

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Are You An Embassy Without Walls?

2013-07-07_1098911_67628863Crime Scene Investigators primarily use their powers of observation to provide context for the evidence they collect. First responders are trained to preserve the state of the crime scene evidence by setting up a perimeter until investigators can collect the evidence. In some cases for prolonged investigations crime scene tape and police seals stand guard to protect the evidence for longer periods of time.

 

Likewise walls and fences around an embassy stand guard to protect the valuable evidence of the sovereign territory contained within the walls. To the persons on the outside the evidence may hold a value of life or death, granting them due process under a different set of laws, which may give them safety from harm. All that stands between them is the wall, fence and guards.

 

The US Embassies around the world use specially trained Marines and a corps of diplomats who understand these articles of evidence. These articles include passports, flag orders, diplomatic documents, vehicle license plates, classified documents and the like.  Anyone on the outside of the wall in possession of one of the articles may use it to gain access to the full measure of sovereignty represented by that country inside embassy wall.

 

Mark 1:14-15 Now after John was put in prison, Jesus came to Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, 15 and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel.”

 

Matthew 10:7-8 And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’8 Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give.

 

Daughters and Sons of God are embassies of God’s Kingdom. They are representatives of mankind who are consciously aware of what we carry on the inside and they have removed the walls so that any human they encounter may freely access the sovereignty of the Kingdom they carry on the inside.  Unlike man-made kingdoms any person can run up to an embassy of God’s kingdom and claim asylum and a true citizen will grant immunity, safety, justice in the form of reconciliation, adoption and forgiveness.

 

Matthew 7:5-7 Hypocrite! First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye. 6 “Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you in pieces. 7 “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.

In my opinion one of the big mistakes some religious systems make when they try to get people to recognize the value of what they carry by placing a wall around it. Provoking people through jealously is a tactic that God used but He never made it harder to acquire the His Kingdom and His sovereignty.

 I believe the orthodox interpretation of the scripture that says do not “cast your pearls before swine” has been wrongly applied and taken out of its context, not that I have the full understanding. But when you look at the two scriptures that surround verse 6 of Matthew 7 the goal of a Kingdom diplomat remains to give away what is Holy to those outside of the Kingdom freely making them members of our Father’s Kingdom of which we all were once strangers and in some ways still remain estranged.

 

Like police tape, the bible has preserved the scene of Jesus ministry and reveals the context in which He dispensed reconciliation, adoption and forgiveness from our Father in heaven. As disciples of Jesus we are commanded to likewise make disciples of all that we meet. Because all that we have to give is what is on the inside and if we put walls and fences around that then how effective will we be. We are called to freely give away what we have freely received.

 

But wrongly many believe they paid a price for their relationship with God’s Presence and so they feel the need to exact a price instead of giving away what they consider valuable.  However this leads to bad valuations of what God paid as a price. From a human perspective that value could vary with as many people who received the gift of His Presence. But we must remember that Jesus died because no human on earth at the time of His death could truly understand the value of our Father’s Gift to humanity. Even today some would limit the value of God’s Presence for themselves and their friends.  So the question still remains, did Jesus truly die for every human?

 

One of the reasons we fence in the US Embassy is to keep citizens of a foreign country from just running up and requesting asylum. If this were not the case our country would grow, we would have to extend benefits to these new citizens and the host country could become destabilized. What human would not want be a citizen of the most powerful nation on the planet. However if we wall in the sovereignty, freedom, power and blessing of God’s Kingdom then we miss the point of our citizenship.  Jesus was not only just sent to make the kingdom known, He was also sent to make the Kingdom available.

 

The truth of spiritual reality is that there is death outside the walls of God’s Kingdom. And unfortunately there are people and organizations that would have you and the rest of the human population to remain outside of God’s Kingdom. But God’s plan continues to send out Sons and Daughters who are conscious of who they are so they can offer His Kingdom and increase the number of Daughters and Sons who in turn are also willing to go out.  So I encourage us all too freely give away that which we have been freely given.

 

Matthew 21:33-40 “Hear another parable: There was a certain landowner who planted a vineyard and set a hedge around it, dug a winepress in it and built a tower. And he leased it to vinedressers and went into a far country.34 Now when vintage-time drew near, he sent his servants to the vinedressers, that they might receive its fruit.35 And the vinedressers took his servants, beat one, killed one, and stoned another.36 Again he sent other servants, more than the first, and they did likewise to them.37 Then last of all he sent his son to them, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’38 But when the vinedressers saw the son, they said among themselves, ‘This is the heir. Come, let us kill him and seize his inheritance.’39 So they took him and cast him out of the vineyard and killed him.

 

40 “Therefore, when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those vinedressers?”

 

Romans 8:16-17  The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together.

 

Gal 3:28-29  There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.

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Is Your Evidence a Call to All?

13-05-19_120649_4980If there is an example of the perfect human I would say it was Jesus. Buddha Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Mother Theresa, Father Joe are all great examples of humans that have made a difference, but for me Jesus stands above them all. So much so I have chosen to be His disciple. Therefore from that moment of decision until now or at any time in the future if you were to conduct a forensic examination of my life it should indicate that I am a disciple of Jesus.

1John 4:18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.

Jesus speaking to God our Father:

John 17:23 I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me.

Luke 6:40 A disciple is not above his teacher, but everyone who is perfectly trained will be like his teacher.

It is my belief that every human has a call and it is to attain human perfection. So what is perfection and is it possible? If we understand the components of the human through scripture we see that we are three-part-beings. First and at our core is a spiritual being (the little “I” of our existence).  Secondly is our soul which have capacities of intellect, will and emotions that take a lifetime to develop and understand. Thirdly our spirit and soul are contained in a physical body that allows us to operate and relate to others and the objects of this material realm. 

Together and more importantly, human perfection is about the capacity of our being to carry or host the Spiritual Presence of God (the big “I” of our existence). As we become aware of that aspect of our human make-up, it starts to happen that we develop a soulish-understanding that our spirit is in God and God’s spirit is in us forming human perfection. This is the good news that the divine and the common are once again in unity. Bringing and demonstrating that truth is the ministry of Jesus. His prayer was simply “I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one”.

To me Jesus was perfect because He had this understanding (the mind of Christ). His mission, the reason He was sent, was to make clear to humanity that this state of being is available to all. In my opinion a lot of our religious activity is distracting because it is not reinforcing this main point. Do this in remembrance of me were Jesus words. So what about Jesus should we be remembering?

Matthew 28:19 Go thereforeand make disciples of all the nations…

Matthew 20:21-23 So Jesus said to them again, “Peace to you! As the Father has sent Me, I also send you.” 22 And when He had said this, He breathed on them, and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.”

When we awake to the fact of our call as humans we become activated to the purpose of our mission. We have been given citizenship into our Father’s Kingdom, and authority to accomplish the mission in this earth realm. The call on our lives and our mission are simple; become perfect and awake others. As disciples we enter a student-master relationship to become like Master Jesus pledging to follow only His example. The Lord is our Shepard and He alone leads us. When we make other disciples we point them to Jesus as well.

The big problem I see with Christian religion of which I take responsibility because I remain a part of organizational leadership is that we got distracted. We started to follow and train ourselves to the traditions of men and lost sight of perfection. I lost sight of Jesus and more importantly I and our institutions have pointed others in a direction that was not developing their student-master relationship. So now I pray, hope and work with the grace of God to restore vision and I repent often for those that I misled, that they find their way toward Jesus again.

I believe our call is worth the effort. More importantly the object of our call, He is worth our attention. Jesus actions was for all of humanity and the reason I say we have been distracted is sometimes the evidence of our call is not aimed at all humans. Sometimes we interpret scripture and feel justified to pre-judge who will answer the call. Our call is to become perfect and become like Jesus and part of fulfilling that call is to go and make disciples of all the nations.

Isaiah 11:3 …And He shall not judge by the sight of His eyes, Nor decide by the hearing of His ears;

Galatians 3:28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 

Our call is to all humans and not political systems, geographical regions, national borders, or cultural groups. Jesus executed His ministry with none of these distinctions in mind. He saw the possibility for all of mankind to be one with our Father. I encourage us to remember that we are sent by our Father to reconcile all humans to God and His Kingdom. We fail our call if we fail to call all. Whatever door we stand at we have the privilege to activate the awareness of God’s Presence that dwells within them. However if we fail to see God with our spiritual eyes on the inside of other people then the evidence of our call is far short of human perfection. The evidence of our call must be to all.

Luke 10:4-6 But whatever house you enter, first say, ‘Peace to this house.’ And if a son of peace is there, your peace will rest on it; if not, it will return to you. 

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Righteous Relativism

In this post I am going to stray from my normal look at evidence as a metaphor. The goal of this posting will remain the same in that I hope to encourage us to present spiritual evidence of God’s Kingdom. So today I want to discuss Legal Relativism or Righteous Relativism.

1 Corinthians 13:12 For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known.

 As a person who is spiritually aware I believe in the absolute of right and a wrong and the understanding that there is truth and untruth. But I also know that my understanding of these at any moment is a function of my perception. I also believe there are three basic relationships, one with God, one with others, and the one with our self. For this discussion of relativism I am comparing our relationships to truth.

 John 14:6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

 There is a personal momentum that relates to our transformational journey. We all find ourselves  in place that is relative to truth. As we begin to explore the world around us we move toward what we believe is truth and away from dysfunction and untruths. Then we begin to gravitate in our relative orbits around God and truth and we say to ourselves and others I can live here. This is our lifestyle, which is a summation of choices that we have made and this places us in a relative position never static because we continue to make choice throughout our life.

 As we discover a clearer picture of truth we can choose to move toward it and as we discover that the traditions we have embraced are not as pure in truth as we once thought we willingly refine our lifestyle and thereby move our position relative to the truth we discover. So from a material or a spiritual point of view the question remains what is truth and are we willing to change our lifestyle to move forward on our journey of transformation? As Christians we believe Jesus is the Master copy of perfect human lifestyle, is in perfect relationship to God, others and Himself.

 2 Corinthians 10:12 For we dare not class ourselves or compare ourselves with those who commend themselves. But they, measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.

 If our spiritual journey is toward truth and God (children of light seek light) there are several ways to determine if we are making progress in a direction toward truth. One way is by judging our relative position using others as relative markers so we can determine if we making forward momentum. But if we judge our movement using others that moving away from truth our movement is relative to those and not relative truth and God’s Kingdom.

 Some religion’s tend to rely on this form of relativism to justify stagnate growth and a refusal to allow their personal lifestyles to become transformed. So during the weekly meetings instead of seeking truth they tend to point out the faults in other religions, other sexual lifestyles, or the effects of holding different political positions. While these other groups may be wrong in their choices this approach only proves that they are not moving in their direction it does not prove they are moving toward truth. 

2 Corinthians 3:18 But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.

Romans 12:2-3 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith.

 The best way to determine our relativistic movement is to focus on the source of God and truth and not the movement of others.  In the material world science has determined that as we approach a light source the light will appear blue and as we move away it will appear red. This is called the red and blue shift effect. This is the best way to gage our spiritual journey and this will reduce the false readings we get by observing others.

 Spiritual evidence tends to reinforce our focus on the spiritual source of God’s Kingdom. Transformation into the likeness of Jesus carries with it the purpose and responsibility of revealing God the source of all truth. Jesus was sent and we have become His agents, forgiving sin, healing the sick and waking the dead. All of these are results of spiritual evidence but they are themselves also spiritual evidence.

 It is my hope that we to speak the truth in love in order to encourage others to move towards God and His Kingdom. It is easy to point the finger at the Muslim, the homosexual, and the illegal immigrant. Seeing and judging them may prove that our relative position is closer to God as compared to their position. However, unless we are willing to love, forgive and establish an atmosphere of reconciliation for them, our relative position to God will also be moving in a direction that is anti to Christ and His purpose. God so loved this world that He sent Christ who has given us His authority to carry out the purpose of the one who sent Him. So let us walk in the light of God’s truth and enjoy our position of right standing with God our heavenly Father.

 Mark 6:4 But Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his own country, among his own relatives, and in his own house.”

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Fruit Of A Spiritual Tree

This blog uses evidentiary law as a metaphor for spiritual evidence of Gods Kingdom. In this post I will use one of evidentiary law’s legal metaphors as my metaphor. The exclusionary rule is a part of Constitutional Law and is designed to exclude evidence obtained in violation of a criminal defendant’s Fourth Amendment rights.  This amendment guarantees the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures.

 The metaphor I want to use is called Fruit of the poisonous tree which logically means that if the source of the evidence (the “tree”) is tainted, then anything gained from it (the “fruit”) is tainted as well. This rule and metaphor is all about the authenticity of the source of evidence and how it was obtained. This is particularity true when it comes to the spiritual evidence of God’s Kingdom.

 John 14:9 Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?

 Matthew 21:33-35 “Hear another parable: There was a certain landowner who planted a vineyard and set a hedge around it, dug a winepress in it and built a tower. And he leased it to vinedressers and went into a far country. 34 Now when vintage-time drew near, he sent his servants to the vinedressers, that they might receive its fruit. 35 And the vinedressers took his servants, beat one, killed one, and stoned another.

 Spiritual evidence does not originate in this material realm. Therefore the source of real spiritual evidence when gathered and presented says something about the relationship between the presenter and the source. In the material world there is always a question that must be satisfied, and it is, how was the evidence obtained? If it can be proven that during the gathering of evidence, the rights of the defendant were violated, the evidence is excluded.

 As joint heirs to the Kingdom of God, spiritual evidence reveals our relationship to the source of the Kingdom.  Since Jesus is the way, there is only one gate to this evidence and that is through Christ. The vinedressers in the parable got greedy and failed to recognize the owner of the vineyard and the ones he sent. Scripture reveals that the carnal mind or material mindset cannot understand spiritual relationships.

 Like Christ when we present spiritual evidence the jury in the material world naturally tends to view that evidence as having come from a physical source and does not understand the spiritual source. But we are children of God and sent ones and therefore the evidence belongs to the source and not the messengers. Our eyes have been opened to the Spirit of God and that was a work of God’s Spirit. We now understand that we humans are vessels and have the capacity to carry the Presence of God’s Spirit. We have become the “Dominion of God” Himself.

 As Disciples of Jesus we are learning to fill our vessels to overflowing and carry our Father’s Presence so that others might take, eat and become awaken, like we have become. But if we try to force that awakening we will have violated their rights and the spiritual evidence we carry will be dismissed or excluded and our reputations as vessels will discredited. Jesus stood at the door and knocked and we must do likewise.

1 John 3:2-3 Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.

John 3:3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

God is All in All, but each individual consciousness must freely open up in order to experience Father’s indwelling Presence. The Presence of God’s spirit that we carry is born out of intimacy and a trust that He will forgive us when we open ourselves to Him. People in the material world tend to resist opening up if they have experienced a violation of trust. Many religions and cults cross this line of sovereignty in their zealousness to help people experience the freedom that they have come to know.

 One of Jesus favorite sayings after He has carried in Father’s Presence, is that “your faith has made you whole”. A sign of spiritual maturity is the ability to enter into the intimate place and open up to our spiritual Father so He can fill us to overflowing with His Presence and then carefully and respectfully carry His Presence into the material world so people  can freely take from what has been freely given to us. If we manipulate people in to taking something they are not ready for the result is never good. Likewise if a prosecutor thinks someone is guilty and fixes the evidence to get a verdict, he performs a miscarriage of justice.

 Jesus operated from a place of Sabbath rest trusting that God’s Spirit would not return void but that our Father’s Spirit would accomplish His will. Jesus from a place of complete trust said “Not My will but Your will be done”. Our goal as Disciples is to become like our master by taking on His yoke (teachings, mind-set, and instructions). We must willingly become Disciples of Jesus if we expect others willingly chose to be Disciples. When Jesus laid His life down He did it trusting that our Father’s Spirit Words, left in the hearts of His disciples would get the job done.

 Intimacy leads to freedom, and forgiveness, trust, and rest leads to intimacy.

Matthew 11:28-30 Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”

 

 

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Pictures of Truth

For us that have committed to our spiritual journey of understanding, we are learning to share what we have come to know as spiritual truth. If truth sets the innocent free then we have become advocates and disciples of that truth, and therefore in some ways we can be also called freedom fighters. This post is again encouraging us to use the tool of demonstrative evidence so we can present simulations and models that are useful in helping people apprehend the spiritual truth in operation in the Kingdom of God.

 Hosea 4:6 My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I also will reject you from being priest for Me;

 Jesus was a master during the time he walked in the flesh, at the use of a word picture. It is impossible to physically hand someone a piece of spiritual evidence. This is true because spiritual evidence has no physical substance. However since we know that this physical world is formed by spiritual things, then any object in the material world is a symbol or a piece of evidence for spiritual things.

 As ambassadors and priests of God’s Kingdom we have been given authority to reveal the present reality of His Kingdom to those unable at this moment to spiritually comprehend it. That is why we are called children of light. Like Christ we must become skilled at giving our friends in the material world who are presently asleep a word picture or demonstrative evidence. Any object that is comfortable and frequently used by the individual or the group we are talking too can be used in this manner.

 John 15:7  If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you. By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples.

 Revelation 22:2 In the middle of its street, and on either side of the river, was the tree of life, which bore twelve fruits, each tree yielding its fruit every month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.

 For example the scriptures above are using word pictures to reveal the operation of spiritual truth in our Father’s Kingdom.  We also, for example, can use a piece of fruit and its connection to the vine just like the Master Himself did to convey spiritual truth. Jesus in John 15:7 reveals spiritual operations as we should understand them for today. However a clearer revelation which is also in operation is revealed in the final book of the bible in Revelation 22:2. Unfortunately most Christian religions interpret and teach that this truth will only be available sometime in the future.

Spiritual truth is eternal, but its effects can be subject to time by our finite thinking. Therefore the operations of spiritual truth is not subject to the moment it first dawns in our conscious. Yet its application to our personal lives may be limited in its effectives by our thinking. However the reign of God’s Kingdom is and always will be forever in operation.

For example, the spiritual truth behind the operation of forgiveness did not become available the moment I accepted it or gave it to someone. For God so loves the world, and that is why He is sending us into it today. The Master says as much “as the Father sent me, I also send you.” So when did this thought enter into the Heart of God our Father? Was it the moment Adam sinned, or was it when He decided to create Adam, or was it when our Father created the heavens and earth?

 Back to our example, one piece of fruit while sitting with friends at lunch, in a stocking at Christmas, in a fundraiser box you bought from a member of the local high school band can open the door to heaven. That same piece of fruit you encounter with your child while walking through the grocery store can set your child on the path. How about the fruit you and your spouse share with friends in the form of wine when you are out on the town.

 Fruit is just one object in this material world we are all comfortable with and have common experiences with. There are many objects in this material world that are not limited by social, cultural, gender, political, racial, religious or economic boundaries that can be used a word pictures.

 We have available to us many objects and symbols at our disposal with which to reveal the spiritual Kingdom of God. We all have different personalities and experiences and yet we all share common experiences with objects in this material world. Through Christ, God has placed us in a world where we are surrounded by relative darkness. As we understand our Father’s heart and become skilled with truth, people around us become transformed and begin their  personal journey.

 Ephesians 5:8 For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light.

 Luke 6:35 But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil.

 As sent ones we must learn to go with the heart of the one who is sending us. The heart of our Father is that all of mankind be saved into His spiritual Kingdom out from the darkness of the material world. We live in this world but once our spiritual senses are awakened we begin our personal transformation by learning the operations and benefits of our citizenship in the Kingdom of God. We also begin to view the objects and events of this material world with a different point of view. As our relationship to heaven changes so also is our relationship to the people of earth.

 My friends be encouraged and strengthen by the image of Christ. Like Jesus must keep as a motto “Not my will but His will be done” and rely on the Spirit of God inside of us. By doing this we will not resist our transformation into the image of our Father’s Master image.  Jesus Christ is described in scripture (Hebrews chapter 1) as being the brightness of our Father’s glory and the express image of His person.

 So let us remain on our spiritual journey to becoming more conscious that we are truly sons and daughters of our Father in heaven and that we can become like our Brother Jesus, who carried the fullness of our Father’s Spirit within Him. We like Him are the Kingdom at hand.

1 Corinthians 2:12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God.

 Matthew 10:7-8 And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give.

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