If your Gods mad, time to learn who God really is and how he loves you for you not some potential future you…
I was listening to Caleb Miller and he brought up an analogy of a good father. ..
If you have a baby who has just learned to crawl and you are watching him crawl around on the floor. You see your child heading for the stairs ….
Do you as a father wait for the child to fall down the stairs before stepping in or do you be proactive in the situation?
A good parent steps in before there is an issue. Ask yourself, do you think you would have better parenting skills then God? He has made a way, he has already responded and rescued man before we knew there was a danger. He is not a monster waiting to punish those who don’t measure up. A good parent loves and takes care of the well behaving and the misbehaving child with the same level of love and affection. You don’t have to gain some mystical brownie points before he saves you from falling down the proverbial stairs.
He loves, accepts, and has already provided for his kids.
Go(o)d parenting 101
have become just like the gods they trust
Psalm 115:8 ESV
“Images of Jesus matter… there is a strong correlation between the images of Jesus and images of the Christian life. Our image of Jesus affects our perception of the Christian life in two ways: it gives shape to the Christian life; and it can make the Christianity credible or incredible.”
Meeting Jesus Again for the First Time
How do you see Jesus? The answer to this one question sets so many beliefss, ideas, and expectations.
What is the role of Jesus in the over all scene of things?
I heard Brad Jersak quote Meistersinger Ekhart “God, save us from God.” After hearing it, it rolled around in my head for the next few days. I couldn’t shake it. I have been accused of making God in my own image or the version of Him I want to believe in. If you think about that, we all have. We have a vision of who God is based on our perceptions whether good or bad our rendition is based on what we or who we believe God/Jesus is.
I have changed my thinking and perceptions in the past few years. Formerly I was in the standard evangelical charismatic with a touch of American Pentecostal thrown in for good measure. I was a conservative republican Bible toting American. The Bible said it, I believe it, and that settles it kind of a guy. To me Jesus was just as much apple pie and American as you can get. I saw a God of love and war and judgement. I believed in hell fire and brimstone for the masses who didn’t see it that way… and I was okay with that. I saw God as a judge and Jesus as my lawyer my arbitrator. My Christianity or my perceived righteousness was based on my spiritual activity and accomplishments. I was riding a spiritual roller coaster. Running to God when I had a couple notches on my spirit belt and ducking in shame and guilt when I felt I fell short. In order to be able to go to God it was a mental game to me. If I messed up, I guess I ould have to read some extra chapters maybe fast a couple meals and God will see I am repentant and worth giving me a glance.
I found myself to be a judgmental jerk. I would play mind games looking for the short comings in others in order to make myself look better than them. I probably put people off with my mental gymnastics. I know I wasn’t drawing them in with my being me. My version of God was skewed and it formed my very being. My actions and the way I treated people came out of that.
What’s your version of God/Jesus?
That will tell a lot about you. God, save me from God! Save me from the God that I thought I knew. Save me from the judgmental spirit my paradigm birthed within me. I knew that God was LOVE (period), but always had caveats as to how he was going to roll out the book of Joel and Revelation an come out swinging and taken names and letting the blood flow. I had a bipolar godhead. God, save me from God, save me from who I believed Him to be. There is a book titled The Shack by WM Paul Young.
” “Then,” she said with finality, “if you are able to judge God so easily, you certainly can judge the world.” Again she spoke without emotion. “You must choose two of your children to spend eternity in God’s new heavens and new earth, but only two.” “What?” he erupted, turning to her in disbelief. “And you must choose three of your children to spend eternity in hell.” Mack couldn’t believe what he was hearing and started to panic. “Mackenzie.” Her voice now came as calm and wonderful as he had first heard it. “I am only asking you to do something that you believe God does. He knows every person ever conceived, and he knows them so much more deeply and clearly than you will ever know your own children. He loves each one according to his knowledge of the being of that son or daughter. You believe he will condemn most to an eternity of torment, away from his presence and apart from his love. Is that not true?” “I suppose I do. I’ve just never thought about it like this.” He was stumbling over his words in his shock. “I just assumed that somehow God could do that. Talking about hell was always sort of an abstract conversation, not about anyone that I truly…” Mack hesitated, realizing that what he was about to say would sound ugly. “Not about anyone that I truly cared about.” “So you suppose, then, that God does this easily, but you cannot? Come now, Mackenzie. Which three of your five children will you sentence to hell? Katie is struggling with you the most right now. She treats you badly and has said hurtful things to you. Perhaps she is the first and most logical choice. What about her? You are the judge, Mackenzie, and you must choose.” “I don’t want to be the judge,” he said, standing up. Mack’s mind was racing. This couldn’t be real. How could God ask him to choose among his own children? There was no way he could sentence Katie, or any of his other children, to an eternity in hell just because she had sinned against him. Even if Katie or Josh or Jon or Tyler committed some heinous crime, he still wouldn’t do it. He couldn’t! For him, it wasn’t about their performance; it was about his love for them. “I can’t do this,” he said softly. “You must,” she replied. “I can’t do this,” he said louder and more vehemently. “You must,” she said again, her voice softer. “I… will… not… do… this!” Mack yelled, his blood boiling hot inside him. “You must,” she whispered. “I can’t. I can’t. I won’t!” he screamed, and now the words and emotions came tumbling out. The woman just stood watching and waiting. Finally he looked at her, pleading with his eyes. “Could I goinstead? If you need someone to torture for eternity, I’ll go in their place. Would that work? Could I do that?” He fell at her feet, crying and begging now. “Please let me go for my children. Please, I would be happy to… Please, I am begging you. Please… Please…” “Mackenzie, Mackenzie,” she whispered, and her words came like a splash of cool water on a brutally hot day. Her hands gently touched his cheeks as she lifted him to his feet. Looking at her through blurring tears, he could see that her smile was radiant. “Now you sound like Jesus. You have judged well, Mackenzie. I am so proud of you!” “But I haven’t judged anything,” Mack offered in confusion. “Oh, but you have. You have judged them worthy of love, even if it costs you everything. That is how Jesus loves.” When he heard the words he thought of his new friend waiting by the lake. “And now you know Papa’s heart,” she added, “who loves all her children perfectly.” ”
To love perfectly, that is the premise of my view of God! He is said to be love. Gods love is unconditional, it is never ending and all sufficient. Is that agreeable? Is there another view that says this would be false? Where does wrath come in or better yet how does it fit in? If he is both a God of wrath and a God of unconditional love how can that be? I was saved from that God. I was released from a bipolar godhead and and a guilt ridden lifestyle of Christianity. No, I do not believe that I now have a license to sin or free to willy nilly do as I please. The freedom I have been given or entered into has driven or you could say it propels me to want to know Him more, to trust Him more, and to believe in Him moi used to mess up and fear going before Him because I felt unworthy, I now run to Him freely because I know how He sees me and how He defines me. That definition is all that matters. How you view God will impact your personification of Him. It will either hamper or hinder your ability to relate in fear or intimacy.
Excerpt from Farewell to Mars by Brian Zahnd
Constantine had a fetish with Christian symbolism, placing them on weapons of warfare and going into battle. Upon his victory he said the victory was the result of the Christian symbols and the Christian God. This see the up Christianity as the religion of the state.
“Almost overnight the church found itself in a chaplaincy role to the empire and on a trajectory that would lead to the catastrophe of a deeply compromised Christianity. The catastrophe of church as vassal to the state would find its most grotesque expression in the medieval crusades when, under the banner of the cross, Christians killed in the name of Christ. The crusades are perhaps the most egregious example of how distorted Christianity can become when we separate Christ from his ideas. Yet we continue to do this—we worship Jesus as Savior while dismissing his ideas about peace.
For seventeen centuries Christianity has offered a gospel where we can accept Jesus as our personal Savior while largely ignoring his ideas about peace, violence, and human society. We have embraced a privatized, postmortem gospel that stresses Jesus dying for our sins but at the same time ignores his political ideas. This leaves us free to run the world the way it has always been run: by the power of the sword. Under pressure from the ideology of empire, concepts like freedom and truth gain radically different meanings than those intended by Christ. Freedom becomes a euphemism for vanquishing (instead of loving) enemies; truth finds its ultimate form in the will to power (expressed in the willingness to kill).
This is a long way from the ideas of peace, love, and forgiveness set forth by Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount. It was Jesus’s ideas about truth and freedom that made him dangerous to the principalities and powers. But today our gospel isn’t very dangerous. It’s been tamed and domesticated. If Jesus of Nazareth had preached the paper-thin version of what passes for the “gospel”today—a shrunken, postmortem promise of going to heaven when you die—Pilate would have shrugged his shoulders and released the Nazarene, warning him not to get mixed up in the affairs of the real world. But that’s not what happened. Why? Because Pilate was smart enough to understand that what Jesus was preaching was a challenge to the philosophy of empire (or as we prefer to call it today, superpower). In making Christ the chaplain-in-chief of Constantinian Christianity, what was unwittingly done was to invent a Manichean Jesus who saves our souls while leaving us free to run the affairs of the world as we see fit.”
This God of love and peace has been morphed into a God of wrath and war.
“words for the first time, it so shocked me, I left my house, book in hand, and walked for a mile pondering what I had just read. It was a “take the red pill”moment for me. What I saw was that great and powerful nations shape God into their own image; great and powerful nations conscript God to do their bidding. Great and powerful nations use the idea and vocabulary of God to legitimize their own agenda. Great and powerful nations project God as a personification of their own national interests. And for the most part, they don’t know they are doing it. This is not to say that everything great and powerful nations do is evil—far from it. They maintain order, provide security, produce industry, maintain civility, educate the populace, preserve culture, and so on. But neither are they to be confused with the kingdom of Christ. And neither can they claim that the God revealed in the crucified and risen Christ is their God, committed to their interests! No! There are no “Christian nations”in the political sense. The risen Christ does have a “nation”(see Matt. 21: 43), but it’s not a nationalized body politic, rather it’s the baptized body of Messiah! This is what I was beginning to see—disturbing yet liberating truth.”
Can a nation claim God’s right and just cause belongs to them and that the nation is carrying out God’s will?
Lately I’ve been contemplating the songs we sing and how even the tense of the the verbs or the viewpoint to which traditionally have been applied to them affects our paradigm and can possibly create a present moment or put things off at a distance.
There was a song I never heard going down this morning, really liked it and it made me think more on distance or delay.
I took a picture of the chorus and then thought about each line through His perception or what I think his view may be.
“We love you and we’ll never stop”
You always loved us and you’ve never considered anything else
“We can’t live without you Jesus”
You’ve never been separate of us ever constant never far
“We love you were can’t get enough”
Your thoughts are forever for us never anywhere else
“And all this is for you Jesus”
His all in all, His creation was solely made and designed for us His kids, His lineage, His inheritance.
I re-worded each of the lines of the chorus from my thoughts of what God would look at us and sing it over us in reverse if you/He would.
There is no more distance or delay in my thoughts these days. I had for so many years always put my righteousness or sanctification out there on a subliminal calender in the future. I had the mentality of I’m a poor sinner being saved grace and that I was wallowing in a sin nature and always fighting some area of … oops I’m falling short again with some 7 step program.
Where God is involved i no longer see as distant and aloof, he has never left us! The NT is littered with references of “Christ in Me” whether I have acknowledged it or not. He put a plan in place prior toothed creation of the world (pre-dirt) and full filled it before Adam even breathed his first breath. The only view He will ever have of His kids is perfect, holy, redeemed, and loved! He has given all for us…
His view of you is not based on your level of faith or or some level holiness. You are His gift of grace to himself. Complete now. He provided this gift for ALL at no cost.
Seeing God as one who is truly twitterpated with you one who is fully engaged in chasing you down.
Don’t put His love and acceptance of you in the future after you have attained some higher degree of holiness. It’s the “faith of God” not the “faith in God” that matters. He believes in you way more than you could ever believe in Him.
Re-thinking what I thought I knew…
Just cuz you heard it over the pulpit does not mean it is true. The Pharisee thought they knew how the Jehovah would come on in as a warrior triumphantly wiping out any that opposed their version of God. Guess what? They were wrong…..
A friend I have known since he was a little kid wrote this…
Go ahead read it.
Truman, so proud of you!
When putting together a resume you want to put it out there who you are and to put the object of your purpose. A resume should say who you are in a short concise manner.
Paul was a very accomplished individual. He was a learned man, a Pharisee, he was known as a zealous man who prior to his conversion he persecuted the followers of Jesus. He was known and feared. He was a brilliant mind, a commanding knowledge of philosophy and religion, and could debate with the most educated scholars of his day.
After his conversion is credited for writing at least 13 of the 27 books of the New Testament. The dude should have an impressive Resume…
Yet when reading the New Testament he does not intriguing himself on his accolades.
In Romans he opens it up on verse 1 with his resume;
“Paul, passionately engaged by Jesus Christ, identified in him to represent him. My mandate and message is to announce the goodness of God to mankind”
Okay, so this is not necessarily his resume but he states his accreditation and his objective.
He is validated by his “passionate engagement in Christ, identified in HIM to represent HIM”
“My mandate and message is to announce the goodness of God to mankind”
His identity was not based on himself, it was not based on his abilities, or his history. It was purely based on Christmas in him. It was determined by not what he could do for God, but what God had done for him, what God had provided already.
It’s relational it’s not ability or accomplishment based.
In the start to his letter to the Ephesians he re-asserts his resume;
1 Paul, employed by the delightful resolve of God and commissioned to represent Jesus Christ to the saints in Ephesus, also to every believer in Christ Jesus,
2 I greet you with the grace and peace that proceed from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
3 Let’s celebrate God! He lavished every blessing heaven has upon us in Christ!
4 He associated us in Christ before the fall of the world ! Jesus is God’s mind made up about mankind! He always knew in his love that he would present us again face-to-face before him in blameless innocence.
It’s on God’s doing and action not what man could ever do!
1 Persuasion confirms confident expectation and proves the unseen world to be more real than the seen. Faith celebrates as certain what hope visualizes as future. (The shadow no longer substitutes the substance. Jesus is the substance of things hoped for the evidence of everything the prophets foretold. The unveiling of Christ in human life completes man’s every expectation. Col 1:27.)
2 People of previous generations received the testimony of their hope in faith. It was faith that made their hope tangible. (Only the Messiah can give substance to the Messianic hope. No substitute will suffice!)
3 Faith alone explains what is not apparent to the natural eye; how the ages were perfectly framed by the Word of God. Now we understand that everything visible has its origin in the invisible.
4 It was faith that made the difference between the sacrifices of Abel and Cain, and confirmed Abel’s righteousness. God bore witness to righteousness as a gift rather than a reward! Even though he was murdered, his faith still has a voice today. (It was not in what they brought, but in Abel’s faith that righteousness was revealed.)
5 Enoch enjoyed God’s favor by faith, in spite of Adam’s fall; he proved that faith defeats death. (His absent body prophesied the resurrection of Christ; faith does not die!)
6 There is no substitute reward for faith. Faith’s return exceeds any other sense of achievement. Faith knows that God is; those who desire to respond to his invitation to draw near, realize by faith that he is life’s most perfect gift. (If he is the desired one then no substitute will suffice. Jesus Christ defines God’s faith; he is Emmanuel. He is the substance and evidence of all that God believes. Jesus is what God believes. The word translated “reward” is the word misthapodotes. This word is only used once in the Bible and is an interesting combination of two words, misthoo, a wage and apodidomi to give away; righteousness is revealed by faith as a gift and not as a reward for keeping the law; faith pleases God, not good or bad behavior.)
7 Noah received Divine instruction to save his household from judgment; faith prompted him to construct the Ark immediately, long before the rains were evident. His faith demonstrated the difference between judgment and justification.
8 By faith Abraham acknowledged the call of God which gave him his identity and destiny, as evidence of his inheritance as he journeyed into the unknown. (The word, kaleo, means to call, to identify by name, to surname.)
9 Nothing but his faith seemed permanent while Abraham camped in tents like a stranger in the land of promise. His sons Isaac and Jacob joined him as sojourners; equally persuaded that they were heirs of the same promise.
10 His faith saw a city with permanent foundations, designed and constructed by God.
11 Sarah’s testimony of faith is just as amazing: she conceived and bore a child when it was humanly impossible. She believed that God would be faithful to his promise, and gave that belief authority over her life. (The word, hegeomai, strengthened form of ago, to officially appoint in a position of authority.)
12 Faith brought into reality an offspring beyond calculation; from one as good as dead children would be born more numerous than the stars and as impossible to count as the grains of sand on every distant sea shore. (The uttermost parts of the earth, bordered by the sea shore, will know the blessing of righteousness by faith which is the blessing of Abraham, meant for the entire world.[1 Pet 1:3] )
13 These heroes of faith all died believing. Although they did not witness the promise in their lifetime, they saw its fulfillment in the future and embraced the promise by their persuasion. Convinced of its reality; they declared by their way of living that they were mere sojourners and pilgrims in a shadow land whose geography could neither confine nor define their true inheritance.
14 They clearly declared by faith a hinterland beyond their immediate horizon. (A place of promise where God and man would be one again.)
15 They did not regret the country they had left behind. Their faith took them beyond the point of no return. (Do not allow the contradictions in your past or present to become your reference once again. James says that the person who goes back into an old mind-set immediately forgets what manner of man he is, as revealed in the mirror word, the law of perfect liberty [Jas 1:24, 25]. The revelation concerning who man is in Christ declares that the old things have passed away [in his death]. Behold, everything has become new! In his resurrection we were born anew. [2 Cor 5:14-17, 1 Pet 1:3])
16 Their faith saw a greater reality in the spiritual realm than that which they experienced in their present situation; they reached for their true native city designed by God where he himself is proud to be their permanent address. (The fulfillment of the promise is Christ. He is both our native land and our eternal city!)
17 Faith became a more tangible evidence of the promise than even Isaac could ever be to Abraham. Isaac neither fulfilled nor replaced the promise. Inspired by what faith saw, Abraham was ready to do the ridiculous; to sacrifice his only son, convinced that not even Isaac’s death could nullify the promise that God had made to him. (If Isaac was not the substance of Abraham’s faith then who was? Abraham saw beyond Isaac. Jesus said, “Abraham saw my day!” [Jn 8:56-58] “Before Abraham was, I am.”)
18 Yet Abraham knew that God had said that his lineage of faith would be traced through Isaac!
19 He made a prophetic calculation by faith to which there could only be one logical conclusion based on the word he had received: that God would raise the promise from the dead. (In the context of Abraham’s vision, this was an analogy pointing to the parable of the death and resurrection of Christ. A calculation, logical conclusion, from the word, logitzomai, from logos; God’s faith is God’s logic.)
20 By the same faith Isaac extended the future of the promise in the blessing he pronounced over his sons, Esau and Jacob.
21 In his dying moments, Jacob, in worship to the God of Abraham, as the father of the nations, included in the promise the sons of Joseph who were born in Egypt. (In exalting the two grandsons into the rank and right of Joseph’s brothers, he bestowed on them, rather than on Reuben, the double portion of the first-born. Again, faith exceeds the natural. Even though they had an Egyptian mother, they would have an equal interest in all the spiritual and temporal blessings of the covenant of promise.)
22 At the end of his life, Joseph prophetically reminded his sons of the exodus. He had such a firm belief that they would possess the land of promise that he exacted an oath from them: they were not to leave his bones in Egypt.
23 By faith the parents of Moses did not fear the king’s decree, but hid him from Pharaoh for three months, because they saw a future in the child.
24 It was faith that made Moses realize that he was not the son of Pharaoh’s daughter.
25 By faith he preferred to be associated with the affliction of God’s people rather than with the fleeting privileges of Pharaoh’s house, which did not constitute the true portion of his inheritance. (The word, hamartia, from ha, meaning negative, and meros, meaning form or portion, without your portion, to fall short of your portion; often translated as sin.)
26 He was not embarrassed to be associated with the Messianic promise at the expense of the treasures of Egypt. He deliberately looked away from those towards the greater riches of his reward in Christ. (No reward of the flesh can compare with the wealth of faith.)
27 The rage of the King did not scare him when he abandoned Egypt; faith, giving substance to the invisible, made him brave.
28 His faith saw the Paschal Lamb and the sprinkled blood on the door posts as the salvation of the people.
29 By faith they crossed the Red Sea on dry ground, but the Egyptians drowned when they followed them.
30 By faith the walls of the city of Jericho collapsed when Israel marched around the city for seven days. (They did not conquer through the strength of their army.)
31 Rahab the prostitute’s faith saved her even though her house was built in the wall! While all the other houses collapsed around her, her own remained. She welcomed the spies and acknowledged the God who saved them out of Egypt. (Josh 2:11) Her family also was given an equal opportunity to be saved through her faith. (Imagine their surprise, bearing in mind her life and shameful reputation!)
32 And so the list of faith-heroes continues. There is not enough time to tell the stories of Gideon and Barak and Sampson and Jephtah, of David, Samuel and the prophets.
33 These are they who conquered kingdoms by faith. (Gideon, like Rahab, was in no position to claim any credit for his achievement; faith nullifies boasting [see Rom 3:27, Judg 6:11-16] They accomplished righteousness by that same faith and thus secured the promise [by faith and not by performance]. Deborah told Barak the son of Abinoam that, although he would deliver Israel, he would not get the honor, since a woman would do it for him. [See Judg 4:21] In the principle of righteousness by faith, the flesh will take no glory. Barak, means to worship in adoration, and Abinoam means, “my father’s delight” or “grace.”) By faith they shut the mouths of lions. (Samson, whose mighty achievements were immediately accredited to the Spirit of the Lord who moved upon him. Again there was no occasion to glory in the flesh.)
34 Their faith extinguished powerful fires. They escaped from fierce battles. They were empowered in spite of their frailty. They became heroes in battle and caused hostile armies to flee before them. (Jephtah whose own brothers disinherited him because his mother was a prostitute became the captain of the army of Israel.)
35 By faith women received their children back from the dead. (1 Kings 17:18-24, 2 Kings 4:32-34) Others were severely tortured for their faith and refused to accept release when it was offered them on condition that they would renounce their opinions. To have accepted deliverance then could have saved their lives, but their faith saw a more honorable and glorious resurrection.
36 Still others were mocked and ridiculed for their faith: they were beaten up, shackled and imprisoned.
37 While some were stoned to death, others (like Isaiah the prophet) were sawn asunder with a wood saw. There were yet others who were tempted by the promise of possible release from torture, and then were brutally slaughtered with the sword. Many became wandering refugees with nothing but sheep and goatskins for clothing. They lost everything and were harassed and tormented.
38 The world did not realize their worth. These faith-heroes were often driven from their homes and forced to live in the deserts and mountains; sleeping like animals in caves and holes in the ground.
39 Their lives were trophies to their faith, as the substance of what was visualized by their hope, and the evidence of things their natural eyes never saw.
40 God saw the perfect picture in us; we now complete the history of their lives. (Everything that the shadows prefigured has now found its substance through Christ in us.)
by Mirror Bible – mobile app. http://www.mirrorbible.com
“A bird is defined not by being grounded but by his ability to fly. Remember this, humans are defined not by their limitations, but by the intentions I have for them; not by what they seem to be, but by everything it means to be created in my image”
Man is not to be defined by man’s abilities or accomplishments or even lack of accomplishment. Man is defined by God’s thoughts towards man. God calls mankind his beloved sons and daughters, full heirs to His inheritance now. Not at some future point in time but right now. 2 Corinrhians 3:18 speaks of a man looking into a mirror and seeing God’s reflection. A mirror sees/reflects only what is directly in front of it at that exact time. Not some future point but right now.
1 John 4:17
English Standard Version
By this is love perfected with us, so that we may have confidence for the day of judgment, because as he is so also are we in this world.