Sunday, April 19, 2009
In another instance there was a lawyer, a practitioner, a keep of the law. He met with his client to discuss how they would go about defending his case. The client defiantly stated, “Look, I killed that man in cold blood, it is not a matter of what I did. It is a matter of you doing your job and keeping me out of the hot seat!’ This lawyer was not a God-fearing man, but he knew the laws of his country and he knew that murder was a capital offense. What is the lawyer to do? Is he to fulfill the wishes of his client or is he to uphold the laws of the land that he understands with absolute lucidity?
In both of these cases you have a professional who is asked to perform a duty that is ‘wrong’, even to a child. The subjects are faced with a decision regarding right and wrong. In life absolute right and wrong, matters absolutely, but one must understand that that topic will spend too much paper and ink. Suffice it to say that within this context, the right and wrong of a personal obligation is the Trump card. In the end of it all, each person will be responsible for their own actions and will receive in themselves there due penalty for said actions.
If one accepts the concept that one is to do whatever their job requires and be done with it, this entire train of thought can be finished. Close the page.
Alternatively, if one considers the life they have lived, recalling instances where they have been faced with right and wrong only to choose wrong, and were subsequently haunted by said action, our conversation must continue.
At this moment one much choose what heart they posses. Does their heart justify their wrong doing by its own value, or does their heart understand there is a right and there is a wrong that overrule the role of such and such a temporal vocation? Or perhaps there is a higher power that overrules every decree of man? A choice exist for both the deist and the humanist, the only position any individual cannot maintain on the wrong versus right debate is to ‘not have one’.
Now, if the concept of 'there is a right thing to do’ has been accepted, one must push forward, make further discoveries. Said moral conflict is magnified when one recalls specific, personal experiences where they were placed at a juncture by a secondary party and were forced to make a decision. As a rule, making the ‘right choice’ is generally more painful at the outset than the ‘wrong choice’. But, and herein lies the crux of this text, the person IS given a choice, they are offered a wrong and a right path as it relates to their personal freewill, whether that will is guided by humanism or by faith. Thankfully, even in such a secular humanist society as the world of today, this concept of freedom to choose ‘what is right for you’ is fiercely protected…or is it?
(Writer’s Note: 1.21 million abortions were performed in the US alone in 2005, rough 3,300 a day. Meanwhile, 3,434 in combat fatalities have been reported in the war on terror as of 01.26.08., roughly 1.34 a day.)
Saturday, April 18, 2009
There was a massive white room, I can only assume it was a room because I could not see the sun and everything was far too white and smooth for it to have been an exterior, in which sat a man on a chair. There were no walls to be seen and the space was devoid of a ceiling. A shiny white ribbon of floor stretched out in every direction and the air was uniformly, gleaming white. The only variation in the visual value was due to the vignetting of my eye, a sliver darker at the corners. I invested a good deal of time in making sure that this was no trick of the room, it wasn’t. The room stood in perfection. The only fault within the space was myself; of this I was keenly aware. There was never a sunrise or a sunset, seasons were absent…it was one perfect moment in time; but unlike anything I had ever encountered, it was frozen. Perhaps it was an infinite series of perfect moments standing in a row, but my wanting brain was stretch too thin already; such a concept would certainly have burst it.
The chair was a very ordinary chair by the unspoken standards of the room, yet I desired it madly. It was the chair of greatest portion. The man sitting in it did not seem to possess any particularly obvious reason for having such a divine seating appointment, at least not at my first glance. Yet there was something that was not all-together plain about him. His face was placid. His eyes were exceedingly clear. And though his lips never ceased to hold there ever so slightly set smile, it was clear that lucid wisdom would flow forth if he ever broke his silence. I am not sure how I knew this, I simply did. The room had a way of slipping things into your head, unbeknownst to you, but their factuality was certain. He held himself in a way of respect, but not in as you see soldiers who crave attention, his objective was not attention. For all the circling, poking, prodding and whatnot that I did, he never took the slightest notice of me. I was fascinated. He was becoming less ordinary, far less ordinary. My desire for his seat was ever growing.
Time was as useful there as drink or food. I had not seen either of the ladder two since my arrival eons ago. My preoccupation with the seat grew. “When is he going to leave?” I asked myself time an again. The waiting was unbearable.
Finally, I stood directly before him, “What are you waiting for?!?” I shouted.
“To be used.” he replied.
Friday, April 10, 2009
The premise is this, there is often a selfish feeling that through a hard event in one’s life, not of their causing, God will “teach” the one who perpetrated the offense against them “a good lesson through this”. One needn’t look far to see the human mind working overtime to stretch their logic around God’s, and once again we see the thread worn seams break open. The concept of “bad things don’t happen to good people” has been widely propagated and is far from biblical, with supporting reference after reference after reference. The alignment of the natural man’s mind is such that his economy and God’s have about as much in common as the act of falling and the act of flying. Both instances involve a body, one body who is whole and one body who is mere moments from being broken into many irreparable pieces. In said misalignment, there are certainties; success is not a listed outcome. Perhaps I must take a few steps backwards in order to take one step forward?
“But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God; for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised.”[i]
In setting a stage one requires a few key elements; our stage will be set through 1Corinthians 2:14 lens. There is a man, a natural man; his mind set could be referred to as ‘the crux’ of the passage. In this very thought process a brilliant concept is illustrated, firstly in the fact that as men they instinctively think it is about them, secondly it is not about him but he is limited in grasping this in several capacities.
According to Unger the natural man is, “…the unbeliever, who does not possess the Spirit (Jude 19)…”[ii] Unger’s choice to follow his surprisingly brief explanation of the natural man by referencing Jude 19 presents a very particular point in a very round about sort of way. The effort of Jude 19 is to warn people of the shape of the future. ““In the last time there shall be mockers, following after their own ungodly lusts.” These are the ones who cause divisions, worldly-minded, devoid of the Spirit.”[iii] Now at least one pointed question remains which Unger has yet to answer. What is to be made of ‘christians’ who behave as the picture Jude has painted? It is a menacing question that will not be properly sorted at present, but the seed of thought is required to properly cultivate one’s mind for considerations in Glory’s Weight as well as the state of man and his position to understand and accept said Weight. Suffice it to say, the natural man may well be the one’s ‘un-churched’ neighbor, yet it is plausible that the natural man is not as simple as the Joe average heathen on the street, more than likely an alarmingly large number of natural men attend church every Sunday, there are even a few who sing in the choir.
With a vague notion of who he is, let us now consider his ability to ‘understand,’ that is, his ability to discern the wisdom of God such as in Ephesians 4:18, Philippians 1:9, Colossians 1:9, Colossians 2:2-3, & Titus 1:1. It would seem the term ‘understanding’ is larger than one understanding that the light switch turns the wall sconce on and off; it is more akin to the electrical engineer’s mindset when he flips a light switch. Granted, the engineer does not sit and process through the entire set of reactions, one electron bumping into another and so on, each time he flips a switch, but he does understand, on a far deeper level than most, what is happening and why. It has been revealed to him. Reconsidered on a more particular level, the natural man’s understanding is of the Earth.[iv] As he receives and processes information he has but one lens to view it through, one mill to grind it with, which is the mortise of Earth. The fallen man will judge, after all what is perception if not a form of judgment, through all that he knows, “this small blue and green ball, spinning through its endless void”.
Now, not only has it not been or been revealed to him; but he has in turn accepted or rejected it. It is quite understandable for a natural man to reject something that he does not understand, therefore the inclusion of “a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God” is doubtfully, actually, directed at the natural man. Potentially, this bridges a gap we have previously only gawked at; perhaps the statement of non-acceptance is not directed at the natural man? Now there’s a thought… A tenable argument could be made for it being directed at those who have sampled the understanding, who have learned some chapter of wisdom only to determine, “that is surely not my cup of tea, far too much losing of myself involved in that, it is fine for you Jack my boy, but for my money, I will stick with what I know. What’s that you say? Yes, fine, I will indulge you by pretending to ‘know’ what you ‘know’, but deep inside I find it a load of childish stories and far-fetched madness propagated by a lot of pompous do-gooders, war mongering demagogues and the like.” Perhaps, now be patient it is a working title; this is the, “The Modern ‘christian’ Man”.
Where a lack of desire for communion with God pervades, no communion with God will exist.
“For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace, because the mind set on the flesh is hostile towards God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so; and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.”[v]
In reviewing Glory and its Weight the Christian must bear these mentioned conditions in mind. The natural man lives in a continuous state of delusion, a life governed by complete lack of truth is no life at all, it is mere chaos. Christians far too often find themselves grabbing at the life Jack was willing to give up, their idols are generally too dear to give up, or give up for long. In doing so, in loving idols, one will lose alignment with Truth, Wisdom, Understanding and Discernment, understandably for they are in complete disobedience with the greatest commandment. With the compass no longer pointing north things seem to become ‘easier’ but in time one finds they have become ever more difficult, truly difficult. The bent economy of the natural man slips back into the mind of the Christian much more subtly than most sins. A Christian realizes they are stumbling when they wake up Saturday morning in a pool of their own vomit, but the same Christian would not think twice about said gradual misalignment. The prince of the air dresses as an angle of light and is very cunning, this needs to be noted time and again.[vi]
To put skin on said misalignment, let one again visit with the wronged individual from the inception of this text. He stands with a misaligned heart, he stamps his foot on the ground, or in a worse case folds his hands, closes his eyes and prays aloud, “Oh God, I hope that You teach them a lesson for hurting me!” The second man, the Christian,[vii] he is not of this earth, he is of heaven and this is commanded to act as such and will act as such for fear of losing the one thing which he holds above all, his communion with his Maker.
The second man is a blessed man. The promises he owns are beyond all expectations of the natural man.
“Therefore we do no lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day. For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all caparison, while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.”[viii]
The second man understands he is blessed to be afflicted; he understands that in such moments his Maker is showing him an extra portion of Love. His Lord is taking a specific interest in the refinement of his and His being. He, the Maker, is producing the eternal weight of glory. One should notice, very near the last thought on the second man’s mind is “I hope that he (the wrong doer) is getting his!” the second man hasn’t time to be occupied with such natural things, he is far too busy being purified and produced!
“Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life, which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.”[ix]
Said crown has often been considered a prize given in the after life to those who have walked righteously, which no doubt is true. Yet, is it at all possible that the Maker gives us ‘crowns’ even as we walk about this fallen earth? It seems quite a valid conjecture given the process of sanctification and a lifetime of gleaned spiritual wisdom.
(On a far more personal note: I know this man well. I know that one who has sought God’s vengeance on those who’ve ‘wronged him’. I also know that in his times of ‘being wronged’ LG has revealed Himself to him in ways he never before was open to; LG humbled him through ‘being hurt’, drew him in, comforted him, refined him, and produced a better, less natural man. When asking LG for refinement, one generally gets ‘more than they bargained for’, which they grumble about at the outset, but later value over all other treasures. Little by little, this man in who is hopefully truly in process, begins to approach hardship with a more aligned perspective. He begins to grumble less, be thankful more, and seek wisdom in the process, the time commonly known as ‘hard times’. As an earthly ‘crown’ he finds himself blessed beyond all measure that he is found worthy of LG to be used as an instrument for ministering to those around him who are in need.)
[i] 1 Corinthians 2.14 New American Standard Bible.
[ii] Merril Unger, Unger’s Bible Handbook (Chicago: Moody Press, 1966), 628.
[iii] Jude 18 New American Standard Bible.
[iv] 1 Corinthians 15.47 New American Standard Bible.
[v] Romans 8.6 New American Standard Bible.
[vi] 2 Corinthians 11.14 New American Standard Bible.
[vii] 1 Corinthians 15:47 New American Standard Bible.
[viii] 2 Corinthians 4.16-19 New American Standard Bible.
[ix] James 1.12 New American Standard Bible.
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
“For what it is worth, I truly did love you,” he forced his flooded eyes away from her as he offered her these final words. He stood empty, feeling like an honest man before a jury whose sentence would surely be one of death. She responded indirectly, yet direct way by walking away, getting in her car and driving off without a word, gesture or glance back. It was the end.
Not the end, another end. Simple stood hands hanging limply at his sides. Through the haze of the street lamp he watching the taillights fade into the October night. He told himself she would not turn around, she would not be seen coming back white lit this time in place of red. He told himself to just let it die, let the last gasps of air escape the lungs and the spirit soar into the life beyond; yet self would not listen, self hoped beyond all logic for twin, white lanterns to mark the rebirth. The lanterns never came.
In his mind’s eye Simple was as plain a man as the next man on the morning train. He knew that each ageing character surround him carried shadows behind their eyes, dark trunks of un-sorting items and other maladies; everyone does. Simple was no different than anyone else. Simple had had ends just as stubby little accountant that sat across the aisle from him day in and day out had had ends. Simple had scars no deeper than the beautiful ‘aspiring model/secretary’ that sat in front of him each Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday as he returned to his flat. Simple was the quintessential man.
Looking back now I think it was this archetypal quality about Simple that first struck me when we met; or that and the fact that he was my roommate, my slightly ‘square-ish’, roommate. We were both students in secondary school, and I say ‘think’ because at the time I had not the presence of mind to put my finger on the draw. I knew we were agreeable, luckily, and that was sufficient. He was nondescript, did not need a crowd, did not even like crowds. He always took his women one at a time if he was invested in one at all. If ever I could drag him to a party he was generally found in the corner, nursing a drink, discussing something that I found altogether disinteresting with an individual I generally had never even taken heed of. My continued attempts to pull him towards the limelight, where I lived, “to show the world what I see in you” were always met by him looking at the floor, drawing circles with his big toe whilst shrugging his shoulders. “Simple, Simple, Simple…But there will be girls there!” I used to say in exasperation. It seemed a book or a paper generally stole his attention away from the more beautiful persuasions I ceaselessly chased. Yet, he was my mate, my best mate.
Sunday, April 5, 2009
The problem is this.
When I sit at my desk and set about to put down some sort of fictional bit of never-mind, I can rarely find where to start. There is always a time before the time where I start, and this time before always seems so vital to the whole. For example in the case of The Princess: I have yet to establish where this kingdom really is, where is the queen, when is this, what language do they speak, what is the shape of this people group, what is the work they attend to, are they at peace, etc? I mean, how can a story be put down properly without a history, yet when does (or should) the history start? You see now how Lewis had to start his worlds in the Wood, you see how The Silmarillion takes shape…they had to be born for the rest of it to exist.
The myth was actually fact; in myth, fact is merely a matter of viewpoint. (Within the context of the construct)
The logical question, logical to me at least, is how do I get there? I know that it, the history of this myth’s world, already exists; the map has simply to be recovered
What will my methodology look like for discovering this lost civilization? Do I start with a history and write forward, or do I do what I am more inclined to do, create a story and postrationalize a history? By postrationalize I mean, write the past, based on the now.
If I opt for postrationalization as my method, the later date main point story is difficult to construct because it is a house built upon sand. Yet building a cold-start history for a world is something I do not believe is within my skill set upon a multitude of fronts. I haven’t the linguistic background, the sociological concepts or world experience to attempt such a climb. (Or potentially I am just frightened to venture into it…?)
Perhaps a highbred exists. Begin the construction of the myth…when presented with an enigmatic portion of the journey, discover the required history to inform the story.
-Does history dictate a myth?
-I think not…or should I say, ‘I think it needn’t, yet it more than likely will, for all we have, we have learned from history, therefore, it will intrinsically sculpt the myth.’ Therefore, I think it will, regardless of whether it should or should not. After all, most ‘Great Stories’ are merely thinly veiled recreations of Real Actual World History.
-How is history to help said issues for the characters?
-I don’t know exactly…but perhaps I can find it or perhaps it is as simple as myth tellers of older days who again, thinly veiled the successes and failures of thinly veiled Historical Characters?
I have always held that storytelling is in the making. One does not sit down with a clear vision of the events, outcomes, and finale of the story…not in a true story leastwise. (In my not humble enough opinion) When one is dreaming…do they get a memo prior to departure into the dream that tells them of the outcome? When one is born are they issued a syllabus informing them that they will be nominated chair of American Literature at Yale. Which will undoubtedly lead them to live a celebratory life that could potentially involve being hit by a bus while stagger home in a drunken stupor only to completely negate the original syllabus…thus a paradox is revealed, but I digress.
Why do we assume that the story will be clear at the outset? Why do we assume that we will not go through valleys as dark and triumphs as grand as our companions? We shouldst. It has been said we create because we wish to be little gods, I find this not only heretical but a dangerous ground to venture into. Perhaps some do create for said reason, I am sorry for their state. I offer this contention; perhaps we create to educate?
(30 minutes later)
I retract portions of this statement. When this earth was created I do not feel that Lord God was ‘hoping for a good outcome.’ I do understand that He is perfect and divine and I am far from that…I will not hold my entire tale in my head and often I will lose my way. Writing this is akin sanctification. We approach wholeness day by day, we are not whole now, and we will not be until we are done.
Aim for a final target, do not expect failure, but accept it. Seek excellence daily.
Eternity is a decision one makes a day at a time.
Saturday, April 4, 2009
The basis of this text will be Ephesians 4:17-32, from this passage rabbit trails will provide us with a, hopefully, further insight into the specific calling to “…be renewed in the spirit of your mind.”
And so the regeneration begins…
We begin with a post-fall man, the natural man. The natural man will them become a Christian, one who has recently become an un-natural man, then we will explore how one goes about seeking to be a truly sanctified Christian. We will not revisit the natural man in this text, but Lord willing, we will review that thoroughly in a future text. For the present one need only understand this basic state of the old-self, the natural man.
“But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised.” (1 Corinthians 2:14)
To renew a mind one must desperately seek the Truth that is buried deep within the Word, one must Obey the prescriptions of the Lord(said Truths), and have Faith in the healing of the Holy Spirit.
17“This I say therefore, and affirm together with the Lord, that you walk no longer just as the Gentiles also walk, in the futility of their mind, 18being darkened in their understanding, excluded from the life of God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the hardness of their heart; 19and they, having become callous, have given themselves over to sensuality, for the practice of every kind of impurity with greediness.”
At the outset of each of our existences’, from the womb, unlike John the Baptist(Luke1:15), we are separated from LG/HS and our infantile hearts are already hardened to His essences, our eyes are darkened. Every true Christian understands this hardened/darkened state of being whether they wish to admit it or not; we have all walked in them, some ‘christians’ continue to walk in them, which begs further questioning not addressed within this text. We, the little ‘hard-hearted’ humans that we are, quickly grow into big ‘harder-hearted’ humans that are filled and practicing greedily of every kind of sensuality. We fill ourselves to overflowing, and go back for seconds and thirds; satan is very cunning. The wisest of all men, Solomon spoke at length regarding filling himself with sensuality in Ecclesiastes, again, his story does not make its way into this text but is illuminating supplementary reading.
Special note: Per Paul in Romans 1.
21“For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God, or give thanks; but they became futile in their speculations, 23and their foolish heart was darkened. 22Professing to be wise, the became fools, and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of bids and four-footed animals and crawling creatures.”
With this in mind…one must wonder where the Eternal Securitiests are going with their arguments.(?) A child of God cannot walk in darkness, yet these fellows will be given over to darkness…the prospects are bleak. Darkening can happen to any human soul, no one is safe, regardless of present church dogma.
20“But you did not learn Christ in this way, 21if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught in Him, just as truth is in Jesus, 22that, in reference to your former manner of life, you lay aside the old self, which is being corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit, s3and that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind, 24and put on the new self, which in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth.”
Paul is particular about his usages of personal pronouns. He says YOU. He is not making an open ended, “take it or leave it, it is just my point of view…after all, what do I know.” type of statement; he is saying ‘YOU DID NOT…YOU LAY ASIDE…YOU BE RENEWED’.
Special note: Per Paul in Romans 12.
2“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.”
The believer, the ones who have “heard Him and have been taught in Him,”(Eph4:21) have no recourse BUT to ‘LAY’ them, aside.
Special note regarding said ‘them’: Colossians 3.
5Therefore consider the members of your earthly body as dead to immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and greed, which amounts to idolatry.
We are commanded to have no other God before us, enough said.
If we take the ‘lay aside’ directive very literally, which is rarely if ever a bad approach when dealing with much of the bible, one would cease and desist to behave in the manor that they once behaved in while walking in darkness. We are called to ‘walk as children of light’. (Eph 5:8) Other usages of the term ‘Lay’ often imply a type of final resting place or submission or sacrifice or subjugation. Again, ‘Lay’ is not a suggestively toned directive. It is a matter of obedience. Will You or will You not ‘Lay’ Your old self, Your natural man, Your darkness at My feet?
Faith is a matter of action…all the glorious words of faith matter not in the face of pure obedience.
Obedience is faith with skin on it.
Do or do not, there is no try.
-“You be renewed in the spirit of your mind,” Here we enter into the point of this discourse. It is a simple statement with a seemingly exceptionally multi-faceted, biblically sprinkled, set of verbs attached. I will offer three tools for mind renewal, but it is by no means an exhaustive list. To renew a mind one must desperately seek the Truth that is buried deep within the Word, one must Obey the prescriptions of the Lord, and finally have Faith in the healing of the Holy Spirit. Incase this concept is lost upon the reader; One must know what Truth they are to Obey so that they can practice their Faith.
Finding the truth is the foundational action of the one seeking renewal of the mind. Without TRUTH, there can be no renewal.
25“Therefore, laying aside falsehood, SPEAK TRUTH, EACH ONE of you, WITH HIS NEIGHBOR, for we are members of one another. 26BE ANGRY, AND yet DO NOT SIN; do not let the sun go down on your anger, 27and do not give the devil an opportunity. 28Let him who steals steal no longer; but rather let him labor, performing with his own hands what is good, in order that he may have something to share with him who has need. 29Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth but only such a words is good for edification according to the need of the moment, that it may give grace to those who hear. 30And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. 32And be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.”
There are a handful of tangible directives in here that when practiced will lead to a renewed mind. Like every other habit, practice will perfect in some cases or solidify improper practices in other cases; it is a matter of choice, followed by obedience. A Christian mind brings much along from the natural man’s mind. God does not re-format our brains in as simple a stroke as ‘C:\format’, upon the uttering of a few words. Yes, you are new creations in Christ, you stand before Lord God justified! But you are plagued more than ever by the fiery darts of the Devil, and as a new Christian who does not even know about the Armor of God, much less how to put it on…the Christian mind can easily be wasted; reclaimed. The parable of the Sower clearly demonstrates this set of scenarios.
“Therefore putting aside all filthiness and all that remains of the wickedness, in humility receive the word implanted, which is able to save you souls.” (James 1:21)
“This is pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father, to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world.” (James 1:27)
“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.” (James 4:8)
“All Scripture is inspired by God and Profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving in let your request be made know to God.” (Philippians 4:6)
“Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worth of praise, dwell on these things.” (Philippians 4:8)
Next, obedience is a simple verb; one merely need do obey obedience. Every time the finger of God pokes a believer in their first step process of seeking truth, the believer must Obey Now!
“But prove yourselves does of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves.” (James 1:22)
“For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome.” (I John 5:3)
“If anyone does not obey our instruction in this letter, take special note of that person and do not associate with him, so that he will be put to shame.” (2 Thess 3:14)
Finally, the Holy Spirit Will heal the faithful man.
“He saved us, not the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and the renewing by the Holy Spirit.” (Titus3:5)
“Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another, so that you may be healed. The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much” (James 5:16)
To renew a mind one must desperately seek the Truth that is buried deep within the Word, one must Obey the prescriptions of the Lord, and finally have Faith in the healing of the Holy Spirit.
Further text below for additional reflection. They have not found their way into this text, but Lord willing they will land in another.
More parts to work in and consider…
1Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.
2Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth.
3For you have died and your¬ life is hidden with Christ in God.
4When Christ, who is our life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory.
5Therefore consider the members of your earthly body as dead to immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and greed, which amounts to idolatry.
6For it is because of these things that the wrath of God will come [a]upon the sons of disobedience,
7and in them you also once walked, when you were living in them.
8But now you also, put them all aside: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and abusive speech from your mouth.
9Do not lie to one another, since you laid aside the old self with its evil practices,
10and have put on the new self who is being renewed to a true knowledge according to the image of the One who created him--
11a renewal in which there is no distinction between Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave and freeman, but Christ is all, and in all.
12So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience;
13bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you.
14Beyond all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity.
15Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful.
16Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.
1What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase?
2May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it?
4Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.
5For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection,
6knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin;
7for he who has died is freed from sin.
8Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him,
9knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, is never to die again; death no longer is master over Him.
11Even so consider yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus.
12Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its lusts,
13and do not go on presenting the members of your body to sin as instruments of unrighteousness; but present yourselves to God as those alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God.
14For sin shall not be master over you, for you are not under law but under grace.
15What then? Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace? May it never be!
16Do you not know that when you present yourselves to someone as slaves for obedience, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin resulting in death, or of obedience resulting in righteousness?
17But thanks be to God that though you were slaves of sin, you became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching to which you were committed,
18and having been freed from sin, you became slaves of righteousness.
Friday, April 3, 2009
(A dream of 03.10.08)
Having reached cruising altitude absent of turbulence, the seat belt sign blinked off. He could see her silver wing glistening; the western sunset was blazing upon it from behind her. She was sleeping pacifically next to Him. She was a perfect specimen. (well, as near perfection as one is to find on an earth so fallen as this to a pessimist so pessimistic as He)
After a time, He decided to have a look about the craft. It was His first flight on a bird of this class. she was a big bird. Seven floors completed her, most of them were full of people. There were a handful of compartments that contained cargo and such with a large elevator connecting all the levels, if there was a stair He did not find it.
He had been lucky enough to procure seats for Them in the bulkhead of the third tier. From this vantage point they could see all the coming terrain clearly, straight ahead, through Their windshield, of sorts, like that in a car. They pierced through clouds, they were the arrow head of this bird, the pupil.
He read a bit but the text would not stay in, He tried to sleep and but that would not come to him either without the help of some drink. Finally, there was enough drink and enough time, and enough boredom; He succumbed.
His dreams were black velvet. They slipped one into another the darkness ever growing, all of them surrounded Her, themed in Her. He did not much subscribe to dreams, but maybe there are times to and times not to, then again, maybe there are not? she sailed through a rhythm of jarts…a 3 year-old had a drum. Subsequently, the seat belt sign turned on with a ding. He did not wake. Deeper and deeper He fell, there as no time to wake. Darker and deeper the dreams of Her grew.
He awoke to a very gentle shaking. “Wake up my Love, my morning sun, my mountain peak, my ever-after, wake up.” It was their custom to do this. He hated to wake, loved to sleep. Soon after She Knew Him, She began this ritual of rousing, it was always brilliant.
she slowly rolled to align with her harbor.
Horror came in an instant. The old girl bucked from a docile, aged mare into a stallion of purest pedigree. She was upside down and diving instantly. They watched the ground grow larger and larger. He held her tightly. They were pulling up, it seemed there was a chance that they could make it out…He knew better. He looked at her---a life passed before Him, a slide show of Knowing, there was another life lived in this moment that can be measured by no clock yet created---˙then all was black, velvety black.
They could see the runway ahead. The bulkhead is amazing. her captain set her down gently, he must have been older. The gate was not far away.
A rickety little ramp was drawn up to the craft, it was odd, she was so glorious, and this shoddy ramp was her birth. Across the ramp to a pier, water was on both side, then down the pier to another boat was their path. He led her on. The small ship did not last long, but had it not been there the swim would have been horrific, dodging all sorts of large maritime traffic. Once They left the swift they passed through a large door that seemed more in keeping with her, “this is a proper port.” Up a maze of escalators, through a line of officials, more hallways, and elevators follow. He led her on.
At last there was a Gate. A very normal type of Gate. It had a destination marked, and a time for departure. The time was near, growing ever nearer as time so often does.
“I have led You here. I cannot go with You. You are here now and You will be fine henceforth.” There was a look, it was a visual embrace that is all but lost in this day, He then turned and strode off.