Tag Archives: God

Love or Fear, which is our motivation?

2012_04-15_900410_65609984The parable told by Jesus of the seed and the sower is a favorite of mine. Today I will keep this post short with the hope of planting a single seed into each heart that reads this post. The seed is in the question. I do so, because I believe this seed has the power to change the direction concerning the spiritual path that all humans travel. This seed is all about our awareness and it can awaken us to the true reality of our spiritual walk. This seed in its infancy, it is about the awareness and use of two words. The first is “love” and the second is “sin”.

Once this seed is s sown and takes root, it allows us to listen especially when we are engaged in a spiritual conversation. It provides the awaken conscience with a tool that allows one to make a mental tally of these two words.  At that point, any human is able to discern if the words going out from them or the words coming towards them are encoded with a motivation of love or fear.

The purpose of this seed is to help us continually evaluate our spiritual transformation process as we travel on our individual journeys. All humans are involved in long-term relationships and we daily meet new people.  This seed will mature into a useful internal spiritual tool that will provide great clarity. This seed starts out as a simple counter of two words and then over time it will grow and blossom internally with a robust capability that can nuance any thought.

While we continue on our spiritual journey, we need a tool to help us discern if the people around us are helping us to reach our goal of becoming aware that we are already one with God. It is my experience that most people are well-meaning however sometimes encouragement can be motivated by fear instead love. Fearful motivation may bring temporary benefits but it cannot sustain us on the journey of a lifetime.

You might be saying to yourself, why not use both words, encourage love, and remove sin? If the use of the both words were equal, I will agree with you. My only goal is to plant this seed so that it creates a capacity of internal awareness of our spiritual motivation. These two words and the motivational thoughts that accompany them are important if we are to reach our spiritual goal in this lifetime.

I bring no judgment. My only hope is that as this spiritual capability matures each of us will be able to discern the motivation behind the messages are coming at us and going from um us.  Even now that the seed has already been sown, we are more equipped to answer the question as we read it again.

Love or fear, which is our motivation?

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Equality of Presence

2015-01-10_1288835_84823660An organizational hierarchy can be a valuable asset. An increase in efficiency of the labor output as well as being a vehicle for quick and thorough communication, are just two of the benefits of hierarchy. However, as a member of institutions, we have all experience what happens when the overhead functions of any organizational structure begin to consume more of the energy and resources that were originally identified for the individual members of the organization.

Psalm 24:9-10 (NKJV) Lift up your heads, O you gates! Lift up, you everlasting doors! And the King of glory shall come in. 10 Who is this King of glory? The Lord of hosts, He is the King of glory

John 15:1, 9-15 (NLT) “I am the true grapevine, and my Father is the gardener. … 9I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love. 10 When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father’s commandments and remain in his love. 11 I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow! 12 This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you. 13 There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command.

God, as Trinity and God as Kingdom, values above all else, the maximization of each person in His human family. At the beginning of scripture, we see in the creation story the Trinity of God, each part, being one with the whole, in unity and manifesting the fullness of all existence. It is my belief that every human is invited to participate as a joint heir in the ongoing operation of creation by becoming a member partner with each member of the Trinity in this dance of unity with the Holy. Scripture acknowledges humans as ancient gates and everlasting doors through which the spirit and life of God are communicated to all of creation.

As a Christian, I interpret love to mean, to prefer others before myself. As a fan of Star Trek we find Spock’s quote that “the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few” a good piece of philosophy. However, I know that only the Kingdom of God is set up to maximize the potential of every individual person. Therefore, only in that type of hierarchical relationship is the sacrifice of the individual a benefit for the whole. When the reverse is true of hierarchy, individual sacrifice is merely a pawn for the good of the collective hierarchy, not for all of ones friends.

In my opinion, no other organization has the maximization of every individual human as its goal. It is also my experience that the sub-institutions of religion; like marriage, family, and spiritual community, are very often corrupted by one member of the relationship for their personal gain above the greater gain of every individual in the relationship. Non-religious organizations operating on a local, state and federal level, as well as the capitalistic and socialistic business models, very rarely state the maximization of every individual as their primary goal.

Therefore, the function of organizational hierarchy is mostly about the maintenance of the organization and the pursuit of its stated goals. In John chapter 15 where scripture talks about the interconnectivity of a branch and vine, it is referring to means by which life, love, and truth are transferred to each individual. In other words, the presence of God’s Spirit is experienced within the Trinity and Kingdom of God. More to the point is that this experience is instantaneously realized in the life of every human that is consciously connected as members of God’s Family and Kingdom.

The Spirit of Christ arises to remove the veil of ignorance that says the Presence of God’s Spirit is separate from the individual. Under Old Testament law and tradition, God’s Presence was organizationally revealed to only be embodied in the office holders of the Prophet, Priest and King of Israel. Many of today’s religious traditions reaffirm that only positions of hierarchy indicate God’s invisible Presence in someone’s life. Heaven on earth is simply that place where we understand and recognize God’s life, love, authority and truth as it freely manifests and operates.

 Galatians 3:27-28 (NLT) For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 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.

Romans 8:15-19 (NLT) So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. Now we call him, “Abba, Father.” 16 For his Spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are God’s children. 17 And since we are his children, we are his heirs. In fact, together with Christ we are heirs of God’s glory. But if we are to share his glory, we must also share his suffering. 18 Yet what we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory he will reveal to us later. 19 For all creation is waiting eagerly for that future day when God will reveal who his children really are.

Galatians 4:1-3 (NLT) Think of it this way. If a father dies and leaves an inheritance for his young children, those children are not much better off than slaves until they grow up, even though they actually own everything their father had. They have to obey their guardians until they reach whatever age their father set. And that’s the way it was with us before Christ came. We were like children; we were slaves to the basic spiritual principles[a] of this world.

Today there is dawning within the consciousness of humanity that is recognizing the equality of God Presence in all humans. Traditionally, we humans made judgments based on the use of our eyes, ears and other material senses as detectors for the spiritual Presence of God. However, through a more enlightened interpretation of scripture our faith is beginning to understand what science is confirming. That we are more interconnected and the world is less hard-wired by materialistic objects that we traditionally understood.

Quantum Science and Faith practices have a lot in common. They both understand that any attempt to observe the truth and make sense of the expressions in this material world is directly affected by the consciousness of the observer. Also true, is that judgments, concerning things that can’t be observed with the human senses is not something that can be done by using tools and techniques constructed with our material senses.

However, the revealing of God’s possibilities as depicted and interpreted through scripture can enlighten consciousness of the human observer to these invisible relationships. Also, bringing to light, material evidence of the invisible relationships that affect this material world can be consciously understood by everyone in humanity.

Luke 20:1-8 (NKJV)  Now it happened on one of those days, as He taught the people in the temple and preached the gospel, that the chief priests and the scribes, together with the elders, confronted Him and spoke to Him, saying, “Tell us, by what authority are You doing these things? Or who is he who gave You this authority?” But He answered and said to them, “I also will ask you one thing, and answer Me: The baptism of John—was it from heaven or from men?” And they reasoned among themselves, saying, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ He will say, ‘Why then did you not believe him?’ But if we say, ‘From men,’ all the people will stone us, for they are persuaded that John was a prophet.” So they answered that they did not know where it was from. And Jesus said to them, “Neither will I tell you by what authority I do these things.”

Hebrews 11:3 (NKJV) By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible.

Hebrews 11:3 (NLT) By faith we understand that the entire universe was formed at God’s command, that what we now see did not come from anything that can be seen.

My encouragement is that each human finds the freedom and confidence to see and hear the spiritual realities that govern all things in this material realm. Especially, if we consider ourself a Disciple of Jesus, I encourage us to focus on how Jesus is able to demonstrate the reality of God’s realm or God’s Kingdom. My hope is that people will rely less on tradition and become open to perceive the very nature of God’s invisible Presence. It is available to all humans, despite what we currently consider as common sense or believe to be traditional religious or scientific truths.

To start, I suggest we learn to recognize life and the beauty of it in every piece of creation. Assume that everything, that exist, is alive and has a purpose. Embrace life in all its multiplicity of forms and prefer relationships of love over relationships of fear. Finally seek a deeper understanding of our personal relationship with all that exist. With that, let’s begin to see if we can recognize an equality of God Presence in the existence of everything.

The Parable of the Wicked Vinedressers  Luke 20:9-15 (NLT)  Now Jesus turned to the people again and told them this story: “A man planted a vineyard, leased it to tenant farmers, and moved to another country to live for several years. 10 At the time of the grape harvest, he sent one of his servants to collect his share of the crop. But the farmers attacked the servant, beat him up, and sent him back empty-handed. 11 So the owner sent another servant, but they also insulted him, beat him up, and sent him away empty-handed. 12 A third man was sent, and they wounded him and chased him away. 13 “‘What will I do?’ the owner asked himself. ‘I know! I’ll send my cherished son. Surely they will respect him.’14 “But when the tenant farmers saw his son, they said to each other, ‘Here comes the heir to this estate. Let’s kill him and get the estate for ourselves!’ 15 So they dragged him out of the vineyard and murdered him.

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Delivering Evidence of God’s Unity with All

2014-09-07_795754_54710131God’s love for all humans equally, can be understood in many ways. One way is through the words in scripture which testifies of His actions and hope for humanity. The story of the prodigal son is an allegory which is being lived out in our current times today. Before I show examples of how this is happening I want to remind us of how the story ends. Spoiler alert!

Luke 15:31-32 “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.’”

The jealously between humans could be dissolved if we keep active in our mind and heart, the above thought. From the first murder till now the understanding of this scripture is lost evidence to most humans. The understanding of this evidence alone could quell fears, end all wars and bring about the equal distribution of all earthly resources that God has provided for all His human family.

Today in Christianity and in most areas of human society we are experiencing an emergence that is taking place throughout every institution in our modern society. We are witnessing it in the governance of the nation-states of the world, in the social–media changes moving through our global communications, in the restructuring and accountability in world financial markets, we are also beginning to see  joint exploration between the traditions of science and religion.

In this post however, I want to focus on the emergence that is happening within Christianity. When Protestantism was formed, this same world transformation was happening as well. The two sons of this allegory were at it again, and during that time Catholicism was the son that stayed behind. This time it is the Emergent Church that is the son leaving with its inheritance with the belief that it can make a better impact in the world.

The traditional interpretation of the  story referred to as the “Prodigal Son” in Luke chapter 15, only recognizes one son to have an incorrect world view. It was the son who left his father’s home with ideas that he could make life better without his Father, but in the end he squandered his inheritance and returned home defeated. However what is overlooked by the orthodox interpretation is that the jealous son who faithfully remained in his Father’ home also had an incorrect world view in which he thought he alone would inherit everything left behind after his brother went out for his adventure. This is evidenced by his reaction of jealousy when his father begins to give his brother some of his perceived material wealth when his brother returned.

Both cases reveal that both sons were entertaining thoughts of living a life without their father as they enjoyed the spoils of their inheritance. The sole purpose of Jesus telling this allegory was to put an end to the human concept of life without God our heavenly Father. The sole purpose of Rabbi Jesus prayers, teachings and demonstrations was to communicate to humanity that it is possible to be one with God and enjoy the spoils of inheritance during our life here on earth.

John 17:20-22 “I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word; 21 that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me. 22 And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one:

I have heard it said that love is the dissolution of separation between to people and beauty is the dissolution of separation between objects. When people fall in love we become one with another person or community and when we walk in nature or move within a city built by humans we become one with the sights, sounds and smells of our environment.

If we Emergent’s leave the fold, in our desire to expand the Kingdom, and do it without our true inheritance we will fail to carry God and His loving message to our lost family and we will return home defeated. It is true that traditional Christianity has added baggage to the idea that God is a loving Father that loves all His children equally. This is why Jesus became the demonstration of God’s love that has the power to establish loving relationships between God and each member of humanity.

Likewise if the traditional Christians fears that adding the world to the Kingdom will change or diminish the Kingdom of God then we truly need to question our understanding of an infinite God who took away our sins in this world. If our sins have not destroyed the Kingdom and His grace and glory is sufficient for us, then surely His grace and glory is enough to cover the sins of the world.

In this story both children are lost and hold a wrong understanding of the resources of their father. When Jesus spoke this allegory he told it in hopes that both audiences would hear and see the errors of their materialistic thinking. Life without God is separatist thinking and is the opposite of love and beauty. The idea that we can establish anything new or maintain any tradition without our Father in heaven is just bad theology.

My encouragement is to us all, regardless if we are emerging from long-held traditions or if we are the supporters of existing traditional institutions. This allegory of Jesus is to get us to hold a world view of a loving God as a Father to all who are willing to share His infinite resources with everyone equally. Jesus was sent by our Father to change our mindset so we can see all members of the human family as members of His family and that He loves each member equally and has no favorites. Today this is not our human experience of family but it is the spiritual experience of the Kingdom of God.

If we are the ones who go out and help awake our fellow humans too their membership in God’s Kingdom, or if we take on the responsibility to stay behind and work for greater understanding of family and Kingdom within our existing religious traditions we must always share the substance of God’s equallity toward all, as our evidence. The evidence is the love and beauty that has the transforming power to make all things new. And by new I mean awakening to the reality that any person or thing, is already one with God. In God’s Kingdom there is only unity and the very Presence of God permeates all. God is love and It is the evidence of His Kingdom.

Gal 4:1-6 Now I say that the heir, as long as he is a child, does not differ at all from a slave, though he is master of all, 2 but is under guardians and stewards until the time appointed by the father. 3 Even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under the elements of the world. 4 But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, 5 to redeem those who were under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons. 6 And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out, “Abba, Father!” 7 Therefore you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.

Philippians 2:5-7 Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, 6 who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, 7 but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men.

 

 

 

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Evidence Not Understood

CAM00814The material process of evolution implies that things move from a state of simplicity toward more complex state. As attorneys compile evidence to present to a judge and jury the chain of custody must be preserved on all pieces of evidence as they build a case which may be very complex. The bible in the Old and New Testaments implies that all humans are children of God.

However for the humans alive today believing such a complex truth will require an understanding of a lot of simple truths that have been in evidence for over six thousand years of recorded biblical history. For me one simple text of scripture implies the potential condition of all humans.

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

In contrast the Spiritual process of enlightenment moves in the opposite direction of material evolution. Spiritual revelation should strip away confusion and make things more simple and clear. And thus we humans always have two paths that lead to truth. God encodes truth in material reality and reveals the same truth through spiritual enlightenment.

Today some humans participate in the Christian faith for various reasons. I do as well and for me it is all about the maximizing of both human material and spiritual potential. Most Christians believe that the work God sent Jesus to do is intended for all humans. But in practice many Christians interpret and bestow favorable treatment to those people that have chosen to be identified as Christian and bestow a somewhat unfavorable treatment to those who have yet to identify with Jesus. Furthermore within the Christian religious sect favorable honor is rendered based on people’s position in the organizational hierarchy.

In the heart and mind of every human judgments are being made every day based on their beliefs and understanding of which human is truly a child of God. Today people react viscerally to the charge that one person is a child of God and another person is not. Common to western culture and know by other cultures is this belief that some people are counted among God’s chosen people and others are not.

It is these beliefs that shape political platforms and social fabric of people all around the world. There are many battle lines that are that are being fought today and many of them have to do with the interpretation of this single truth. If we are all truly children of God then would we ever find justification to harm one’s own sister or brother?

Is there evidence that the average person could present in their daily response to the many situations that make up the social fabric of our communities? In a normal familial relationship people do not carry around birth certificates to prove their relationships. Husbands and wives do however wear rings. But not everyone has the same skin color or eye color or residential address, or economic status, or cultural language or accent. So can we judge without using the site of our eyes or the hearing of our ears?

 

Galatians 4:1 Now I say that the heir, as long as he is a child, does not differ at all from a slave, though he is master of all,

 

One easy way to tell whose child someone is by the stuff they have inherited and their use of that stuff. Every culture has inherited something unless it is a new emerging culture and even then it emerges from a previous source of life. This is the testimonial status of Jesus who is the inheritance for all humans. The biblical testimony is that He was the first spiritually born child to introduced humankind to its inheritance. And after two thousand years we humans are still discovering what we have inherited.

The purpose of my words in this post is to encourage a change in our beliefs. Jesus inherited the love of our Father in heaven and that alone should be our identity because it is the totality of what we inherit with Jesus. It is the truth upon which all of Christianity is truly founded. The current social order we find in the world today provides evidence of fact, that humans hold a belief that is contrary the truth of God love for all His human children.

If we who call ourselves disciples and citizens of God’s kingdom we need to understand this single message we have been given to present as evidence. Love alone should be the message and yet people of the world are confused because we the messengers are unable to communicate it with clarity.

It is my hope that the truth of God’s love for all humans as His children, no longer remain as evidence that is not understood by everyone. If God is truly our Father then every human is either our sister or brother and we should treat each other with the equality and respect that our relationship has inherited. Jesus is the “first fruit” and that implies that there is an expectation on God’s part that there is more fruit to be realized. This means that more of the human population needs to understand and relate to one another in this truth.

May the eyes of our understanding be enlightened and may we present truthful evidence that is simple and understood.

 

Romans 8:14-17 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. 15 For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.” 16 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.

Galatians 3:26-29 For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. 27 For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 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. 29 And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.

 

Galatians 4:4-7 But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out, “Abba, Father!” Therefore you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.

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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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Who Is Going Viral In Your World?

12-12-08_591893_44228499When we say that something has gone viral it indicates that a portion of the culture is experiencing something that is out of the normal status of that culture. In other words there is a change taking place that is evident. YouTube has become a social media site where people go to see and experience the effects of change. Thus the term going viral is measured in how many people view something that has happened.  

Some could say that democracy is still viral because we have recently witnessed four maybe five nation states oust their leaders for a more democratic form of government. Within Protestant Christianity, Pentecostalism remains virulent as the fastest growing sector as it continues to spread the deeper experience of a consciously aware relationship with Holy Spirit. At the same time many in the emergent church movement are participating in a cultural revolution within Christianity as a whole with some observers liking it to the beginnings of the Protestantism reformation.

The bigger question and the personal question is what kind of change are we expecting ourselves and others to experience? Jesus the Christ injected a spiritual strain of DNA (human mother and spiritual father) into the race of mankind that has been affecting the human culture for the last two thousand years. The Kingdom of God extends membership to all who become aware that they carry within themselves a spiritual Presence (namely the Spirit of God, Holy Spirit). And so we are all witness the effect of God’s Kingdom on the religious and secular segments of the human culture.

2 Cor 3:17 Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.

Isa 61:1 The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon Me, because the LORD has anointed Me …. To proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound;

When cultures grow with in existing cultures they tend to feed on the host culture until it becomes the host. So there are waves of growth and resistance that takes place as the states of status quo give way to new states of normalcy. Witnessing the effects of change can be difficult because they happen gradually over time. However as we learn to develop the tools to observe cultural change it is an exciting thing to watch.

For two thousand years the Kingdom of God has been spreading throughout mankind’s culture. Also during this time our understanding of that Kingdom has changed. As we reflect on history we can begin to see patterns as understanding changed so did the growth of the Kingdom expand. The same is true for the host culture, as its understanding about the Kingdom changed its resistance to the Kingdom either strengthen or diminished.

Jesus founded the Kingdom on the principal of love. One scriptural interpretation was that Jesus was freeing people from the bondage in the world to join the Kingdom of His Father. But as we look back through history we see that some of those who have taken up this work used the tools of force and fear to spread God’s Kingdom and in every case the host culture met it with a level of resistance. The same is true when the tools of love and forgiveness were used we see great growth and minimum resistance by the human culture.

From our Master’s perspective we are given the Kingdom to set free those that are in bondage. In those times when terms of revolution was used to set free others than self we see a righteous discharge of Kingdom authority. However when these terms of revolution are used for personal gain or the gain for a subgroup of the culture one can only do like our Master and pray, forgive them for they know not what they do.

As Christians we have become agents of change or ambassadors of God’s Kingdom.  Our local community by definition is not the Kingdom; our country defined by its borders is not the Kingdom. The Kingdom is any place where the Presence of God Spirit is.  A U.S. ambassador is the embassy, any aircraft carrying the President is Air Force One. Concerning the Kingdom Presence is everything. If the Presence of God’s Spirit is within us then the Kingdom is inside of us.

Our ability to see Christ in others even before they can see it in themselves makes the Kingdom virulent. Under the Old Testament when something unclean touched something holy that thing became defiled, unclean and no longer fit for service to God. When Jesus as the Christ established God’s Kingdom, He came and touched things and people who were unclean in order to make them clean, holy and fit for service to God. We have been given that same authority. We are at the point of impact within the culture, we carry within us the Presence of God and all that we touch can become pure. This is true because it is no longer we who live in these vessels of human flesh, we have been transformed, we are the embassy of God, and all that run to us should be glad. One day they will violently try to touch you.

So I encourage us to demonstrate with intent and understanding of what we carry inside of us. Unfortunately many of us are members of religious organizations that continue to put up walls as a defense to stay undefiled from the world. We need to demonstrate to them as well as the world that we are and carry a greater Presence within, than the junk in the world. If there is fear or a need to destroy the world, it is because of a poor understanding of the power of the Presence living within. Scripture reveals that perfect love cast out all fear.

My encouragement to you is to increase your awareness of God’s spiritual Presence that is within us. As that relationship grows we will begin to notice the effects we are having on others and the effect that Holy Spirit’s Presence is having on us. Daily and hourly as we commune with God the two are becoming one. We are all individually being transformed in much the same way the world is changing. So I leave you with my original question, what kind of change are we expecting ourselves and others to experience?

 

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