Tag Archives: spiritual authority

The Evidence of Natural Order

2014-01-04_CAM00417Forgiveness, grace and mercy are the evidence of God’s Presence and they are a part of the natural order of God’s Kingdom. To make this more obvious let us compare this same evidence to the fruit produced by the organized religions of the material world specifically Christian religious organizations. Forgiveness, grace and mercy can also be said to be the fruit of a life connected or entangled with the life and laws of God.

 The natural order of the material world and its religious organizations will have some rate of decay (entropy). However the energy to maintain and grow these organizations can be measured by examining the fruit yielded. The same could be said for our current understanding of God’s spiritual kingdom. Let us assume two things. 1) that the material world and its laws are a shadow of how the spiritual world operates and 2) that our human mind is capable of observing the effects of true spiritual fruit.

 If energy is the exercising of authority then the fruit of a material or spiritual realm can be used to measure the effectiveness of that realm to maintain or grow itself. We can observe the use of authority in God’s Kingdom and the various Christian religious organizations to determine similarities and gain understanding of the natural order in both the spiritual and material realms. I will limit this discussion in hopes that we will become conscious of our experience as well as become more observant of the future uses of authority.

 When observing religious organizations, we may notice that during periods when there are no limits as to who can execute forgiveness, grace and mercy these organizations begin to have a fruitful period of growth and membership is extended to any human. But when the organization limits authority or requires hierarchical consent (ie. new member, discipleship programs) to protect structure and traditions by limiting how and who receives the benefits of membership the trend towards growth slows. The apparent growth during times when authority is limited usually comes when it consumes other like organizations or its members(pre-approved humans).

 The Kingdom of God places it authority to execute forgiveness, grace and mercy in the heart of each individual member. As new members are birthed authority for them to do the same is transferred immediately and the Kingdom grows. The only tradition is that they learn to execute the forgiveness, grace and mercy that was freely given to them for every human they meet. God’s kingdom does not need to expended energy to maintain exceptions for cultural traditions, national affiliations, gender, race or economic status, all energy is expended for growth.

 What we begin to notice is the execution of authority produces fruit. God’s Kingdom has always maintained that His law be written on the heart of every member. However material realm organizations have always held a natural order of hierarchy where different rules are applied at different levels for different circumstances.

 Matthew 28:18-19 And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations,…..

The non-equality with respect to authority in the material realm corrodes and establishes a natural order with duration short of eternity. One reason the material realm will never be eternal is that it must expend energy in the transfer process of authority in order to establish and maintain an authority hierarchy in its social order. In the Kingdom of God the same Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead resides in all believers and forgiveness, grace and mercy have no limits.

 The Kingdom of God establishes a different natural order where each person can live and walk in the way of Jesus by simply executing forgiveness, grace and mercy to every human they come in contact with. Each person also has the freedom to ignore the status quo of their material world and extend forgiveness, grace and mercy to people who look and think nothing like themselves. Even our enemies can become members of God’s Kingdom when we use our authority and execute forgiveness, grace and mercy.

 There are many people committed to their religious order but I encourage us all to compare our way to God’s way. As we begin our comparison I encourage us to simply limit our initial assessment in the way we execute forgiveness, grace and mercy. I pray that we each have the courage to make the comparison and begin to live an eternal life that shows forth the evidence of God’s natural order.

The Parable of the Unforgiving Servant (Matthew 18:21-35 NLT)

21 Then Peter came to him and asked, “Lord, how often should I forgive someone who sins against me? Seven times?” 22 “No, not seven times,” Jesus replied, “but seventy times seven!

23 “Therefore, the Kingdom of Heaven can be compared to a king who decided to bring his accounts up to date with servants who had borrowed money from him.24 In the process, one of his debtors was brought in who owed him millions of dollars. 25 He couldn’t pay, so his master ordered that he be sold—along with his wife, his children, and everything he owned—to pay the debt.26 “But the man fell down before his master and begged him, ‘Please, be patient with me, and I will pay it all.’ 27 Then his master was filled with pity for him, and he released him and forgave his debt.28 “But when the man left the king, he went to a fellow servant who owed him a few thousand dollars. He grabbed him by the throat and demanded instant payment. 29 “His fellow servant fell down before him and begged for a little more time. ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay it,’ he pleaded. 30 But his creditor wouldn’t wait. He had the man arrested and put in prison until the debt could be paid in full.31 “When some of the other servants saw this, they were very upset. They went to the king and told him everything that had happened. 32 Then the king called in the man he had forgiven and said, ‘You evil servant! I forgave you that tremendous debt because you pleaded with me.33 Shouldn’t you have mercy on your fellow servant, just as I had mercy on you?’34 Then the angry king sent the man to prison to be tortured until he had paid his entire debt.35 “That’s what my heavenly Father will do to you if you refuse to forgive your brothers and sisters from your heart.”

 

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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 Does Our Evidence Include?

2013-04-08_659462_55398312One of the things the ministry of Jesus accomplished was to declare and make available access to the Kingdom of God for all humans. In the garden of Gethsemane there was a scene played out that had been done for many years as part of traditional Jewish weddings. An engagement party or betrothal dinner was held between the two families, where a marriage contract was sealed with a cup of wine.

The Father of the bride and the groom would push a cup back and forth across the table as they negotiated the dowry and other tenants of the marriage contract. Can you imagine the anticipation of the bride and groom as they watch their fathers make the deal. Do you think there was much anticipation by sleeping disciples of Jesus day? Should we blame the average sleeping pew sitter of our day?  But until an agreement was reach this cup would pass back and forth with every offer and counter offer. So I ask you what was Jesus really asking when He wanted the cup to pass.

Matthew 26:39 He went a little farther and fell on His face, and prayed, saying, “O My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as You will.

Matthew 26:42 Again, a second time, He went away and prayed, saying, “O My Father, if this cup cannot pass away from Me unless I drink it, Your will be done.”

The questions left to us are who should received the benefits of that negotiated contract between God our Father, Jesus and His Bride? As we carry out our duties as Daughters and Sons of God who are we making aware of this Kingdom that now resides on the inside of humans?  Who else is eligible to use the benefits of God’s family that was made available by our Brother’s death, burial and resurrection? There is a truth for the answers to these questions and finding that truth in scripture has a lot to do with our perspective as we search scripture.

Our human ego wants to worship a big God because who wants to worship a little defeated god. A lot of human interpretation of God through scripture has more to do with how the interpreter feels about their person and little to do with the truth about God and His will. We often hear “if God is on my side, who can be against me and defeat me”.  Jesus was careful to make sure His ego was not the motivation of His heart when he said “Your will be done” to His Father.

We naturally want to feel justified about our decisions. Choosing to become a disciple of Christ is one of those decisions. One way to feel justified is to perceive membership in God’s Kingdom as exclusive. So if other people do not want in, or are not willing to accept pay the price for entrance (10 commandments in Moses day, 613 laws in Jesus day), who cares if they get in. We are in and that is all that counts. Like the Prodigal Son story of the son who stayed behind, considered all that was left belonged to him because His brother took his portion.

Galatians 3:27-29 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.

Genesis 22:15-18 Then the Angel of the Lord called to Abraham a second time out of heaven, 16 and said: “By Myself I have sworn, says the Lord, because you have done this thing, and have not withheld your son, your only son17 blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply your descendants as the stars of the heaven and as the sand which is on the seashore; and your descendants shall possess the gate of their enemies. 18 In your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice.”

When the thrust of our scriptural interpretation goes from inclusive to exclusive I think we have somehow missed the big picture from God’s point of view. The human ego and materialistic perspective has at its core a primary value of survival but God being eternal values love for others and sacrifice. The Kingdom of God is invisible and the people who are truly of that kingdom are ambassadors using creative ways as co-creators to establish and demonstrate the values of God’s Kingdom.

Mark 9:42 “But whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to stumble, it would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were thrown into the sea

We are the seed, the inheritance, the descendants of Abraham and we now possess the gates of those that consider themselves enemies of God. We have been given the keys to open those gates, with the authority to set fee those that are in bondage, and we can reconcile anyone estranged in their thinking from God back home to our Father. If we are successful  enemies of God are transformed into our brothers and sisters. However if we remain blind or misuse our authority generations of mankind will remain in their belief that they not a part of God’s family or that someone else is God’s favorite.

As we use our spiritual authority to expand our Father’s family and Kingdom we build conclusive and overwhelming evidence that God wants to include all of mankind. It will take a demonstration and a preponderance of evidence to change the mindset of this materialistic world. You and I must present evidence that includes all of mankind. If we pre-judge and exclude any then we are missing the heart of our Father. Earthly fathers have favorites. God our Father so loves the whole world and nothing can separate any us from His love.

Rev 5:9-10  …For You were slain,
And have redeemed us to God by Your blood
Out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation,
10 And have made us kings and priests to our God;
And we shall reign on the earth.”

 

 

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