Where do we go from here?

Life sure does mess things up, doesn’t it!

It seems that, at least for me, in the last year it has been a whirlwind of activity for me,my family, and my friends, it is always something. Is this a good thing or a bad thing?

Good Question!

I have over the past two years(time of retirement) have set in a more structured routine of my life, because I feel that I have found my calling of writing,studying(bible), and interacting in social media in christian beliefs. It is when things go awry with other things that break my routine of it that it ruins my personal life. It is all about me, right? LOL But is it?

My life is one that is searching,digging, and finding my way with Christ,and God to ‘see’ the Light! It has been a tumultuous one on so many points, but I am a survivor. I am a late bloomer in the fact that I feel that I didn’t find my passion in life until I was around 50 yrs old. And I am doing it now.

The question is one that is about “who is first”? Biblical speaking the one that ‘is first’ shall become last! So there’s that. But what should we do? God tells us to “Be Christ”, in everything that we do and say. Christ’s life, is different, for one it is not us, nor is it made of ‘man stuff’, but one from the Holy Spirit!

But what is the “Holy Spirit”? It is “Life”! It is not death, which is what ‘man’ has had to deal with since the ‘garden’. What I believe that has been missing in our christian walk with God, is this understanding that ‘Christianity’ is about “Life”. When we believe, and ‘see’ Christ, we are seeing “Life”, in our life. Society as a whole,(society is all of us, not just everyone but us to included) have perceived as everything we know,do,say, and proclaim as ‘Life’ to us. But is it? What does it ‘get’ us? It is an instant gratification of fun and keeping us busy to not be able to really see “Truth” and “Life”!

Christ in our lives is different. It is first, not us, but Christ that is filling us with His love,desires,needs for us to continue in His life to fulfill the ‘eternal purpose’ of His, an ‘My People’ objective to have fellowship and unity in His Image of the World!

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Dear Christian…

Oh, dear christian, why do you let me down so….

(Sorry, another rant) I want to come at this from two different directions. One is from the ‘pulpit’ and one is from the ‘pew’ angle.(although, I don’t condone either one, but for the purpose of my angle, I will use this example)

Let me start from the ‘pulpit’ angle first, Let me preface this ‘rant’ by saying that my father was a pastor for over 40 yrs, thus I was a preachers kid for that long too, having heard all those sermons and bible studies in my life I feel that I can come at it subjectively. (side note,I have been on three church boards in my life also) What I would like to share with you is the issues of the pastor has when doing his vocation(so they believe), is that in this paradigm of religion, we break it down by our various dogmas of belief’s in what we call denominations. Thousands of them in the U.S.. All varying ever so slightly in their thinking but just enough to have another denomination. lol

It is to this we have to address to understand the dilemma a pastor has. You see, a pastor is held true to his belief system in his sermons, without a doubt his feet are held to the fire of his or her denomination. So this paradigm is worked into his ‘studying’,reading,listening,talking and living this life. Just one little variance could change things for him and his life.

So it is this that has and for ever more put blinders on him to the ‘Word of God’ that He or She says that they believe in and stand on. But they are only seeing or hearing a sliver of it and believing it. Not the whole thing.

Pastor’s have problems. “Our” system has done this to them, We have done this to them. But what I what to say is ‘Pastors’ are not the solution either. It is not the right paradigm.

Now, to the second rant, the solution is sitting in the pews.(again, wrong paradigm) But it is the christians that are sitting there not holding the pastor personally to the ‘fire’ for truth of the word of God, irks me to no end! I had an epiphany at a service one sunday that I would read the scripture surrounding the sermon and to see the true message that it was meaning. I did this instead of listening to the pastor to see if it came across the same way. It didn’t. What we have allowed as the ‘listeners’ of the word to do to us is to ‘hear snippets of stories from the bible and not understood the whole premise of the Bible and of God’s Eternal Purpose.

But to the main issue of the problem, is that the pastor is held accountable to his beliefs and to the denomination’s beliefs of the bible without any variance. Now I also want to point out that if you are a longtimer in the faith of the denomination, that you too believe this way, or you are stuck in this ways of thinking or you just don’t know any other way to think. This too is you duty to hold a pastor to the truth from scripture if something is different, or is false. Now, if there are new or younger people in the church, who are curious of this preaching, it may take years for them to see what the preaching is pointing to specifically, and they being immature believers don’t see the fault in the reasoning, will continue to just listen.

Here is my compaint to the christian, Study the Bible!! Read it, know it. Daily. Not on Sunday for the little ‘Headlines’ that you hear and then go home! That’s Stupid! How do we live our lives to God by hearing 20 minutes of “Be like this” and then go home and try to ‘live it’ and except God to be there too? I don’t understand it?

Let me say here, that I too was like this til I was around 50 yrs old, when I had a epiphany that this is ‘just not right’ God is bigger than this! I decided to be one of those people that put their nose in their bible, books, blogs, sermons,preachers, youtuber watcher of people and seen various things of the world of ‘churchianity’. It was then that I realized that there was much more to the scriptures and God that I wanted to dig deeper, know, have wisdom from God.

This is me, 15 years later still digging and soaking in everything I can. It is a daily thing for me,24/7 thing and I can’t get enough of God. This is what every Christian should be like. I pray that you will too! Find that taste of God, that everlasting water to want to continue to be by the everlasting creek flowing to you and your fellow christian.

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Don’t get me started…..

One thing that drives me crazy, is that Christians of today and of yesteryear failed to ‘proof text’ their beliefs or their pastor or both. This is actually how I started to wave away from the ‘church’ institution when alot of things that were being said, were not in there. I am always being fruitional in all things read, heard or being discussed. (This is what I have found out the hard way from discussing with friends, that their is not an attempt to ‘fact check’ my stance on things, only saying it is wrong or ‘you don’t know what you are talking about’!) Irritates me to no end!!

Let me point out something first before my main ‘IRK’, LOL. Man’s attempt to figure out God, has failed. This is why we must say it out loud for us to realize it in our heads. But let’s start with that thot, with the man in the old testament thru today. There were ‘christian men’ who didn’t have it right even tho God let them continue in their ways. Just Go back to the scriptures and see where man’s ‘leaders’ were still not getting it right. From individuals to institutions have led us astray to the wrong path, that has exacerbated God to no end, I’m sure. God’s plan was different than his creation itself, it was not ever to be of a ‘manly’ way, but of a Heavenly way.

And here it is, my biggest complaint or ‘Irksome’! Let me give a small background of myself, so you will know where I am coming from. My Father was a Pastor for over 40+ yrs in the Church of God denomination. He studied at a christian college, I also went to the same christian college, albeit alot shorter of time. But the crux of the matter is if stand back and look at this paradigm of Christianity and its processes, we will notice something, something bad.

When you go to a college for a ‘degree’ or for a ‘Title’,aka Pastor it is taught all that it is recommended for that ‘type’ of ‘Pastor’ aka, denomination. There is no exception. You are taught that which you also will spout the same verbatim as you learned at school. Now this is fine and dandy, in a sense, but where is the ‘newness’ of the WORD that God gave us, it refreshing, like the spring in the mountain flowing daily down to us in the valley below, it’s the same but different. I can attest for alot of ‘AHA’ moments in my last 15 yrs of deep and thorough studying of God’s word. I have been enlightened thousand of times of very small things to very big things.

It is with this understanding that for one of many reasons I fault the institution of the ‘church’ as it stands today, with many paradigms to be explored and to follow.

I do not know how I would of lived if I had this thirst when I was younger, I would of been starving and no place to live, with my 24/7 appetite of the word. It is this thirst that the bible tells us that we must dig and dig into the meat of the story of God, not just the appetizers that it seems that we have been doing for a long time now.

I will challenge you to do the same, dig deep into the bible search it’s meaning, with God’s desire and will and it will raise you up to Him and His Eternal purpose.

Please, let me know what you think of this short ‘irksome’ story of mine and if you have some of yourselves. Or anything else? I love discussion! Thanks

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Worship defined

This word has a plethora of misunderstandings.

I believe it needs to have more discussion within the assembly of believers.

There are some discrepancies in the the usage of the action. What are the issues of it are, I believe are the use of tradition and stealing of usage from the gentile gods. We will start with the ‘tradition’ issue first.

All throughout the old testament, the ‘worship’ was thought of as ‘where God was’, This concept was instituted only because of mankind’s banishment of the Garden of Eden where the heavenly reign of God was with man, walking and talking together. It was to be a ever expanding realm of God thru the multiplying of mankind. It was then that things changed to be one of a ‘pinpoint’ of a location for man to start again from a central location with God there also. This was the Temple. God was there. It also was the location where God’s chosen people to begin again to become the ‘image’ of God and to then ‘multiply’ to the whole world. It was a plan of re-commitment from God’s people to be who they were meant to be.

This ‘place’ where God was, was also the place of ‘sacrificing’ for the being of God’s people. It was a daily chore, a seasonal chore, and a yearly chore for being with God to ‘right the ship’ sorta way. This was an full blown production of the people’s lives with living for the sacrificing of an individual’s livestock,produce and time. It was also an investment for the people as a whole to sacrifice to the ‘temple’ as a nation of Israel. This ceremonial process was a never ending ritual. It was always to be giving God the first of everything that the person,family, or nation had, whether it be livestock,produce or themselves, to institute the meaning of God’s desire for himself to be first in their minds.

Another form of ‘Worshiping’ was by the pagan worshipers of the plethora of gods that they had in other nations. These rituals were similar to the forms of some sects of the jewish people. It was this that God chastised them for the ways of the world for being wrong.

It is then that the ‘Christianity’ movement was instituted at Pentecost and the formulation of ‘laws’,beliefs, everything to this ‘new’ religion was being made on the fly to keep it going. With the beginning of this movement coming from the perspective of the jewish religion, it was as a way to keep things rolling, would use those things of the jewish rituals. There was some alterations on what laws to keep from the Jewish sect tho. What is perceived as a would be normal transition to use the same things of the Jewish ‘worship’ of going to the temple, after all, that’s where ‘God’ was for the Jews, right. But I will take the hint from the scriptures, that this was not an option for the most part. It is said that ‘they’ christians would ‘meet’ in one another’s homes for the partaking of food and fellowship. This also was at times a struggle in the meeting at all with still the beginning of persecution of the ‘Jews’ and also from the Romans. It would eventually be able to use as a meeting place at ‘halls’ of publicly held meetings, thru the instituting of ‘christianity’ as an ‘association’.

The quote ‘practice of Worship’ was to be redefined by the ‘new sect’ of religion by it’s not ‘going to where God was’ to something else. This is where it gets tricky and messy, there are various convictions or beliefs that surrounded different camps of the newly formed people. First, there was different understandings of this subject, but the two main ones were from Paul and Peter. Let me just say that the one that we are using today is from Peter. The Hierarchical institutional one, with either a layered institution of Priests and the proclaimed ‘Universal’ church, with the much smaller hierarchy of just one leader with followers under him or her.

Let me quote scripture here to throw into the mix to see if maybe we are not seeing things right.

1 When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. 2 And suddenly a sound came from heaven like the rush of a mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. 3 And there appeared to them tongues as of fire, distributed and resting on each one of them. 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

The Revised Standard Version (Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 1971), Ac 2:1–4.

14 But Peter, standing with the eleven, lifted up his voice and addressed them, “Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and give ear to my words. 15 For these men are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day; 16 but this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:
17 ‘And in the last days it shall be, God declares,
that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh,
and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
and your young men shall see visions,
and your old men shall dream dreams;
18 yea, and on my menservants and my maidservants in those days
I will pour out my Spirit; and they shall prophesy.

The Revised Standard Version (Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 1971), Ac 2:14–18.

As I read this I notice that there is a ‘hand off’ of authority from Jesus to the ‘Holy Spirit’. What I don’t see is the need for any other form of leadership or institution made by man. There was one such group in this time frame that was doing such as this, being led by the Holy Spirit in their individual lives and their life as a group. This in my opinion is the misstep that christianity has taken, in furthering God’s calling of his people.

It is the following of the ‘institutional’ paradigm that has gotten us into alot of trouble in both of the beliefs. I believe that Paul was not as direct in saying a ‘meeting place’ was necessary for the continuance of the faith. It was the understanding that Jesus’s Spirit would be the guiding light of his people. God’s people would be of a ‘New Being’ that would not be left alone in the world to fight the evil, but the Holy Spirit was a ‘light upon our feet’.

This action would be our ‘Worship’ of being in Christ, and Christ in Us. This is the ‘action’ of ‘Worshiping’ our God.

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Digging deeper always pays off

The Bible is a plethora of information.

Starting with a bible study of a topic of interest of yours can lead to some interesting new and unannounced findings but with welcoming arms. I seem to do this quite alot with my endeavors of bible searching. I have multiple unanswered questions in my mind, and it is a treat to come across the answer on a daily searching for truth.

I have had such an experience lately on searching the “Origins of Christianity”. I will do a small plug for a recent book that I read, that covers this topic. It is “Christian origins” by Christopher Rowland this book covered a very detail of a plethora of things leading up to the ‘Christian’ tag being used in the bible. It was when the ‘leaders’ of the said group pronounced that the ‘assembly’ should be ‘organized’ and dispel any ‘non-truth’ in the Christian faith.

It was then that the writer pointed out there were ‘various’ views on how to do this. (Let me also point out that this was a pivotal moment in the faith, on how it was to proceed) This is where one of my questions comes into view. I have always wondered how and why the separation of Paul and Peter began. I know the one area where in Galatians that Paul and Peter had a confrontation of the gospel. Paul’s ministry was based on the uniting of the Jews and the gentiles as one, in so doing it imperative that it begin with the sitting down together to commune with each other in food. It was when friends of Peter(Jews) from Jerusalem came into their midst and Peter abruptly go up from the table with the gentiles to not be seen with them.

Paul seeing this, told Peter that he was not of the new gospel identity. It was then that there was seen a separation of ‘thinking’ between the two. Most people read over this exchange of different views as a small thing. But I have always seen this as a ‘kink’ in Peter and the true gospel. I have since then found another kink in Peter and his thought process.

It was a little latter in the ministry of both men that their were hints of unification of thoughts and faith of all things ‘christian’ that needed to be said or wrote down for all to see or hear. There were various groups(assemblies) that had differing views on everything concerned. Now, if we could just stop and understand what I just explained what these groups wanted to do. They wanted to ‘cement’ the ‘ideal’ Christianity so that it will not be confusing, different in speech and word.

Now fast forward to the ‘church'(assembly)’called out ones’ of today. This is the ‘mess’ we are in today in christianity. We have to have this belief, this inclusion, that exclusion, added to the faith statement of our separate groups. Is this good or bad?

I know we read in the new testament of Jesus and Paul both instruct believers to hold close the ‘gospel’ that they had preached and to not swerve off the road to other understandings. But also Jesus tells us to ‘check’ all things according to the spirit of the Lord to keep us on the straight and given road.

Let me put a wrinkle in your seeing things, in my reading of the ‘christian origins’ book I came across some annotated pieces of information that caught my eye, It was one of the groups in the midst of the ‘assemblies’ that were brought together to come into agreement of the ‘faith statement’ for ‘christians’. It was one group from ‘Thyatira’ ,the assembly of believers whose belief that it was the ‘Understanding, or belief’ that the ‘Holy Spirit’ had come for this very reason, to guide and direct the believers. WOW!

I have often stated the numbers of denominations in the U.S. to many people in our discussions of christianity to point out the disunity of it all. But maybe I wasn’t, or we haven’t understood this plethora of belief’s in the U.S.’s christianity issue. Two things, you don’t see this in any other country. Second, Can we not see or hear the problem of when and where we went wrong? The people of Thyatira were on to something when they said that it was to be the leadership of the “Holy Spirit” that is to be our compass in this world, and not our organizations and buildings of mass confusion.

Just a side note, one of my ‘little’ nuances that I have always said to myself, is that ‘Everything in the scriptures was portrayed as the ‘right’ way to do things, the old testament stories were full of things like this. The New Testament I believe that everyone assumes that ‘everything’ was done right in God’s eyes, I don’t think it was, IMO. We are not in the right, if we are not lead by the Holy Spirit!!

Last side note, If the Thyatira group sounds familiar to you, it probably is, but you don’t know from where? It, ironically, is one of the Seven Churches of Revelation! In Thyatira’s chastisement’s from John thru God was their involvement of other idols of the land, it was not of their belief in the Holy Spirit’s Leadership!

Let’s let the Holy Spirit lead us all, and to all Let the King of Kings be our King!!

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on all flesh.

Let me address the topic in two ways. One in Joel 2:28-32, and in Acts 2: 14-21 The former is used in the latter of Acts 2. I will use Joel for the reference in reading.

  28 "And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, and your young men shall see visions. 29 " And I will give portents in the heavens and on the earth, blood and fire and columns of smoke. 31 The sun shall be turned to darkness, and the moon to blood, before the great and terrible day of the Lord comes. 32 And it shall come to pass that all who call upon the name of the Lord shall be delivered; for in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be those who escape, as the Lord has said, and among the survivors shall be those whom the Lord call.

30 “And I will give portents in the heavens and on the earth, blood and fire and columns of smoke. 31 The sun shall be turned to darkness, and the moon to blood, before the great and terrible day of the LORD comes. 32 And it shall come to pass that all who call upon the name of the LORD shall be delivered; for in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be those who escape, as the LORD has said, and among the survivors shall be those whom the LORD calls.

The Revised Standard Version (Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 1971), Joe 2:28–32.

The passage in Joel is quoted in Acts 2 by Peter in the scene of the Pentecost in the upper room. Joel being a prophet is foretelling of an future event in the coming of the Lord and also the Holy Spirit, to not only the prophets But to all, read this reference to this verse 28- On all flesh= God’s Spirit had come upon prophets, priests and Kings during old testament times. Joel looked to a future day when the gifts of the Spirit would come to old and young, men and women, without regard to external office or function. In the New Testament, Peter stated that this prophecy was fulfilled on the day of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit baptized the church.

This addresses alot of things, but I will only seek out the matter of the Holy Spirit ON ALL FLESH. I believe that this is a testament to all that God in His Spirit has come to be with us.

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Land/Temple

Genesis 28:15-17 15 “Behold, I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land; for I will not leave you until I have done that of which I have spoken to you.” 16 Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, ” sureley the Lord is in this place’ and I did not know it.” 17 And he was afraid and said,”How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of Heaven.”

Read this very carefully. Notice the associations, the references that both sides give. They say them differently, but they are saying the same thing. Land mentioned by God is His saying this is where I will be. House(Temple) by Jacob is the house where God lives, and interestingly cryptic for us but we have missed it in our ciphering of this passage is that this land/Temple/house/place is also “Heaven” which also implies that this was the Garden of Eden!!

Do you see it? With Jacob, later will becom Israel as a nation, God’s people, His selected example to become a light upon a Hill to the entire World, would later be for All to be, His people!!

I want to also point out that the ‘land’ reference to the ‘Temple’ also needs to be rectified in understanding. Do you see it? One, Jacob associates God’s home to a temple(because it has to have a building) This was before the actual first Temple was even thought about, it was probably seen as the thing to do because of other people had buildt temples to their Gods. God’s plan for his people was to start with the idea of the temple,sacrifices,commandments to bring them into the realm of God.

It is then that God ‘saves’ us from our transgressions by sending His Son to die on the cross, and Create the New Man for all to become!!

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Something to think about…

A little nibble here and a nibble there.

God continues to give me insight on everything that I am studying. I have 3-4 topics that dig into deeply right now that they actually are intertwined with each other in some ways. I will start with one of the topics to get a more deeper understanding of it, when I am pointed to another nugget within one of my other interests. I still love it that it is open to everything that we read in the bible.

Let me make general observation about studying the word that I see in the ‘community’ of believers. I fear, that the lack of learning God’s word by exegesis in this ‘community'(I am disguising the real culprit (paradigm) in this statement to help you realize what it is) The paradigm that I am talking about is the ‘church’ model that we have, mainly in the US. It does not lead to the leader nor the participants of really being able to dig deep and to understand God’s word and storyline.

I find it worrisome. Let me backup a little so you will understand where I am coming from. My father was a Pastor, I was a pastor’s son, my life was filled with everything and anything related to the ‘church’ and the ‘Ministry’. My pastor(father) was with me until I was 18 yrs old until I went to college. After that I too continued with this model of a pastor and perishioner thru my early adult life until my early 50’s.

From this model I too became a example of the ‘church’ model and all it’s glory. It was then that I realized that we(I) were just getting snippets of the story. Everything was not explained or pieced together to make a complete story. It was only highlighting certain ones to put a exclaimation on it, but was it the REAL story?

I don’t fault the pastor,per se, because this is what they were taught. So why not just continue it with the congregation. But what, I do say, both parties are at fault, the pastor and the listener. Now I know that you are going to say here, that ‘you’ have bible study groups on wednesday nite or a small group on thursday evening. I say this is not exactly what happens when the ‘body’ get together to dig deep into the word. Most of us are not equipped to do such a thing, either from a ‘leader’ position let alone the student.

Why, do I say all this? It is when people that are semi-interested in discussiong things of scripture, and you have someone bring something up that is ‘different’ in nature to what everyone has heard or read, and they dismiss it as hogwash or the ultimate worse thing, it is ‘Heresy’. lol. Not even knowing what heresy is defined as.

This shows that when people bring something up that is found in scripture, we treat it as foolish but it is there as proof text. We sometimes push it aside when we don’t see it as relevent in the verses that we read, or even in the context of the whole story of God. But what I have found that it is amazing that just the tiniest nugget can make a big difference in the meaning of a story.

I would like to point out one of the stories in the bible that gets a little bit of attention, but it is not quite really understood in the relevance of the whole story. It also leaves out some details in it that it either doesn’t want to get into, or just glosses over it. It is the story of the “the tower of Babel”, I challenge you to read it again in its entireity, and slowly ingest it’s meaning and subtlety in all its flow.

Take more time to read the word to dig into the true meaning and the whole storyline of God and how he works thru man and mankind to get to the “Eternal Purpose”!

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Oh My!

Bible is amazing! I am daily ‘seeing’ things in my reading or listening to scripture. I will sometime listen to someone on a certain subject and there is another tidbit of insight to something else I may have been studying and it pieces them together to make it understood!

I in this year have seen or heard alot more of this in everything that I do, it is letting me take everything in to consideration when I am studying. I came across something today, that did exactly that for me. I am always bringing something up in a biblical or a worldly manner that tie each other together to form God’s hand in His eternal purpose for Us!

What I also have perceived that christians have failed in their responsibility to ‘know’ the scriptures. I am a believer in the Corporate identity of God’s people, but I also see the individualism or of small groups deeply studying the word. We have failed to ‘see’ things in the scripture, just as the Pharisee’s, or the scribes did not actually ‘knowing’ what the word means into what God is really about or what He was really doing in the lives of the Jews and the gentiles.

I believe that the train has left the station and is getting up to speed to make it to it’s destination! Hallelujah!! Let us strive for Wisdom in God to continue this Journey!!

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Instruction

26 Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.” 27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. 28 And God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the air and over every living thing that moves upon the earth.” 29 And God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit; you shall have them for food. 30 And to every beast of the earth, and to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, everything that has the breath of life, I have given every green plant for food.” And it was so. 31 And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good

The Revised Standard Version (Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 1971), Ge 1:26–31.

I find these six verses of the bible, the most non-understood verses in the bible.

This should be the verses that every christian, every group of christians, everyone in the world should know and to be the follower of it’s meaning from day one to today!

This is our “Vocation” for mankind. It is all that we need to know. It is from “OUR” God! What else do we need?

This is the “The Eternal Purpose”!

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Tread lightly, my son…

I am a ‘abyie-normal'(reference to a statement in ‘Young Frankenstein’ kind of person. I am always swimming upstream in alot of arena’s. Religion is one of them. I will go up against the norm to challenge it to let it stand up to ‘not persecution’ but to ‘pillars of truth’.

I find it funny and at the same time, sad, that it would come to this but it always what happens when something ‘different’ or ‘new’ to someone when it is challenged to someone’s theology or institution.The ‘log’ that impedes our eyesight is that we not ‘see’ but that we haven’t ‘seen’, because we have been “soundbit’n” for over 500+ years thru the channels of the ‘church’.

Let me expound on this, a Pastor is person that is trying to speak to one small snippet of scripture of a theme,human righteousness, a story, or even a exegesis of a few verses. This paradigm is flawed. It is not using a Corporate Narrative to the Word of God. It(church) cannot ever work this way. The ‘Message’ or ‘Narrative’ cannot be told in a million soundbites over countless Sundays.

I am not sure if it possible to do this with any “Message” to the whole world at a level of this enormous level at a time. But what I do believe that as ‘hearers’ of the Word, or the ‘readers’ of the Word, that we(all) can finally ‘see’ the narrative of God’s story. I believe by starting from the beginning of the story and methodically seeing what God is moving the story along to get to his final scene, that Rest will come to Him.

It is the sincerity of the believers that will bring this mission of uniting all of us to the true Gospel to the World. Reading God’s word with the intent of ‘seeing’ Genesis 1-2 as God’s defining moment of His Kingdom. Realizing that God’s plan for all to be indwelt in the Holy Spirit as is His Son, thus given the title “Sons of God” a reality for all.

My skepticism of the current model is with alot of evidence to this reality of the ‘church'(assembly), one aspect of this would be the fact that the ‘disciples’ have no knowledge of the scriptures after 40+ yrs in the building that was supposed to do this exact thing, learn the word! There seems to be no rhyme or reason of the ‘teaching’ of the word, skipping from here to there in the bible, without any obvious relation to each other. Not realizing that the ‘sole’ issue of the bible starts at the beginning of the narrative, Genesis 1-2, has just been a blind spot from the very beginning of the reformation to now. Although, there seems to be some light shining from this corner, that is gaining some steam to see that this is where the story begins and that it is the Catalyst for the rest of the narrative til the final two chapters in the bible.

It is because we have been down the wrong road from the ‘Y’ intersection that we have missed the wrong message of christianity. It wasn’t about ‘trying’ to get to ‘Heaven’, but it was about having a ‘people’ holy enough to have ‘Heaven’ be on earth as the ‘New Creation’ or the New Kingdom of God.

This concept is now being realized in many of the roads outside the corner church’s, and even in some, it is realized inside the church’s. This is the beginning of what I believe to be the light that will have to be seen not only to the christians inside the building, but also outside in the road’s and highways of the world.

What has really surprised me in all this transfiguration of events is that it was not ‘seen’ sooner. When I have read the bible thru my own studies, I, one, have had problems ‘seeing’ the message that I always was given on sunday morning, there was no evidence of it to be seen. Secondly, I was seeing in plain site the real eternal purpose of God in front of me in the scriptures. Which leads me to another interesting observance of God.

Thru my studying and my involvement with other bible enthusiasts, I have had many ‘words’ used to describe things in the bible. One, being ‘hardened’, which was used in another topical discussion. But it got to me in thinking about it and the usage in the bible, especially in the Old Testament, it was used quite frequently for different times that God was having to deal with individual people or an entity of a group. I believe that God ‘hardened’ Israel to not ‘see’ their Messiah(Jesus) during a prolonged time until it was to be a ‘eye opening’ moment for the Whole World to observe in an Act of God to Showcase His Son, the Savior of the World!!

It is at this time, that the World will come to Him(thru Israel) the servant King to unite all(Israel,Gentile) to come and bow down to the God of All!!

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One step further

You always hear people exclaim when telling scripture to prove a point to someone in discussions, but what if we take it ‘one step further’, to make it really clear, to all of us!

We all seem to know that ‘passage’ in the bible that will prove your point to someone, it’s always handy to have in a discussion. What the significance of the verse is that it alone can put the brakes on something that is being touted by someone in your discussions. It is also true that your counterpart can do the same thing to you also.

So who is right?

I, through various reading material, it has dawned on me that it is because ‘we’ (all of us) are not starting on page one together! What I mean by that, is that we are coming from different stories,examples, people, periods of time, languages, backgrounds, and theologies, and we are starting from ‘our’ base point for telling the story, or scripture.

What time has corroded over the centuries on our theology of God and the Bible has done harm on our understanding God and the Bible. I read all kinds of subject matter pertaining to religion, christianity,and the bible, and for the most part, it all starts from the time of Constantine in the 4th Century in our belief systems or our historical prowess of facts. We have used the Universal Church(Roman Catholic) and its rebellious Lutheran to get us to today. (Which I have always thought that from a religious point, we were starting from the middle of the story) All of our denominations have come from the starting point from the universal church. (Which in my opinion is based on something very misleading and misunderstood to its originality of a ‘church’)

I follow a theologian that says it quite succinctly in the problem that the modern ‘church’ is doing, and that is we are asking the wrong questions. We are asking questions to the middle of the story, when we should looking and thinking what God’s story is telling us from the beginning. God’s story is a narrative. Narrative- a spoken or written account of connected events; a story. There is meaning in a narrative story from the author, it doesn’t change or waver, it stays the same, no matter what.

There is a theme in the first two chapters of the bible. A tragedy happens, then the resumption of the theme starts back up, to the very end of the narrative. Until we get on the same page,the first two pages to be exact, we will never get to the point of why we have to have “Context”!

If we have Context from the first two pages of the Bible, it will not only stay in context thru out the bible, put the focus of the story will come to light to All of Us!!

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Upon further review

(the voice of an official in football, after looking on video if play was good)

I have had discussions with a few people on the importance of the old testament(I prefer the use of ‘covenant’) in all matters of the biblical theology to ‘see’ what God is telling us.

Side note- My interest biblically has always more New Testament(Covenant) but I have since moved my studies to the old.

Tying these two things together,old covenant and God’s eternal purpose are so tied together that We MUST start from the old testament. If we don’t ‘see’ the narrative of God’s plan then we will not see it in the New Testament. And that may be the problem with the “Church” Today,and historically the past 500+ years!

What we must do to see it, is to not look at the bible as before and after narrative of the story with the cross and resurrection in the middle, but as a narrative of God’s Eternal Purpose for His Creation. I believe that God’s desire was and always will be the indwelling of Himself with the indwelling of Creation melding into one. This was the scenario of his plan in the Garden of Eden, with His creation and Himself walking and talking in between the beauty of the Garden. It wasn’t to be.

This beginning, is key to the rest of the narrative in scripture. We must remember it, as we travel thru the scriptures. It is throughout the whole bible. The Temple narrative is one way, another one being the ‘covenant’ way, that we can ‘see’ the desire of God and His purpose.

Let me just go back to the fact that I can see that the christian community has seemed to dismiss much of the intentions of what the old covenant was pointing to. I believe that ‘We’ as christianity have just jumped into the middle of the story, when we have started with the story of ‘Jesus'(Messiah) without knowing why He comes into the narrative. We have for along time seen Christ’s coming as the ‘end all’ of man’s sinful ways. But could it be something else,too?

What if it was a more amazing thing that God was trying to do? What if He was creating that ‘Garden’ scene again, with no possible way of failure to have man and His God walking side by side forever!

You see the ‘Garden’ scene was the foreshadowing of the Temple of God, which in reality was the ‘Messiah’ Christ, who became the Temple of Mankind, within Us as we have joined to Him.

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Old Testament

If you don’t understand the old testament, you don’t understand the New Testament!

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Holy

That’s what Genesis is all about.

If we stand back and look at the story of the Garden of Eden, we will actually see what the story is all about.

First, we have to ‘see’ what the reality of what the Garden is, God’s Space that also includes his creation; mankind.

Can you “SEE” it? if you can, then it will get easier from here to see the clear picture. God’s creation his ‘abode’, his living quarters, his room and board, his head resting place, his space, his bethel, his love. You see, this is where he is Himself, He can be himself with ‘all his creation’ (I sometimes think that we forget, or don’t realize this aspect, God loves not only his humanly creation, but also the surroundings around his humanly creation) This is “His Temple”, this is the original design, altho it might of seemed small to adam and eve at the time, it was expandable, it could start as a pinpoint on the globe, but it could spread out as a ‘drop of water in the ocean’ to expand forever! God told adam and eve to ‘Be fruitful and multiply’ in the garden, this was for everything that was concerned with in the garden, all the goodness surrounding them would flourish ‘with them’, when they would. “Good” would continually to ‘grow’!

This garden was perfect, gorgeous,amazing,picture of God and his essence. You could say that it was “Holy”. It was God and creation together in one place being one in “Holiness”! Two becoming one as a model for things to come!

Have you ever had a conversation with someone and they were telling you a story of their expertise, and a storyline of events, and they mentioned something in the story that was a analogy of something but you didn’t understand it at the time, you just didn’t say anything, and went on. But then you see the person years later and he brings up the story he told you years earlier, and it suddenly dawns on you on what that person was talking about because the one thing you didn’t understand is now in reality, standing right in front of you?

This story is the telling of “God’s temple” in reality of the Garden of Eden of the ‘ideal’ purpose of mankind, but what is ‘in front of us’ is this building that we have designated as ‘a Temple’ as our blueprint of what God wants, when in reality it is just the microcosm of what it is supposed to be, not one of ‘walls'(Eden had not walls) or an institution(men create institutions),or Theology(understanding ways of God), it is much “Bigger than this”, it is not of human ways,or hands but of God’s goodness,or Holiness!

God’s Holiness is the essence that God created us by. It was ‘His Image’ that we were brought into this world, and this was what we were meant to continually be. Christ in Us, Us in Christ.

Holiness.

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Corporate office

This is again is an attempt to clarify the “identity” of the Corporate office, or as I will usually say, “The Head of the Body” is in Charge, not the Body!

I believe in Christianity that we have put the ‘cart’ before the horse in our Picture. Thus we are not going anywhere!

God is the Head of the Body. God is the Head of the Body. God is the Head of the Body.God is the Head of the Body!

Now, who is the head of the Body?

Christianity, leaders,pastors, laypeople, and all seekers have been misinformed that the ‘little church on the corner is somehow the leader of the pack of all things,Church? We have been misled by numerous ways of our believing that somehow, our understanding of God’s ways are his? I believe that it says something to this same fact,

8 “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,” declares the Lord.

New American Standard Bible: 1995 Update (La Habra, CA: The Lockman Foundation, 1995), Is 55:8.

I have tried to expound on this subject over many years without to much success, but it still resonates with me to push this understanding to any and all that will listen. We are missing the overall theme of God’s plan, the one that He started, the one in the beginning, ‘The Garden of Eden’. He has not gone to plan B because of what happened there, it is still the same set up and will be the same result! Mark my word!

The Corporate office is still pushing the buttons, and leading the charge to God’s “Eternal Purpose”! God’s plan is weaving it’s ways through the world,in people,circumstances,good,bad,and even the ugly.

I came across something that I had on my bookshelf that I will use as a tool for me, It was a small booklet that is titles,”Charts for a Theology of Evangelism”. Now I have looked at this book numerous times for different issues, but this time something popped out at me that I hadn’t noticed before.

I would look at 3-4 pages of the “Impact of Revival on U.S. Denominations”,this title was read, then I would look down at the charts of the beginnings of denominations and how each one was started and from which offshoot they came from. I had never really said the title of this section out loud to hear what it was saying. This is my reaction when I seen it!! Oh, my Gosh, This is the reason that there became so many denominations in the Protestant Arena!! They were having Revivals, with many people coming to this indoor and outdoor ‘meetings’ that lead to many people believing or not believing in the speaker of the beginning of the so called reformation period,that then lead to a group then slightly changing something of the speaker before had said he believed as ‘gospel’, and thus brought about a ‘new denomination’. Then as predicted, this goes on again and again for over 500 + years, even today it is still happening.

It is not so much that we are arguing over the little things ‘of the church’, or in the church, sometimes we even argue over what the church is for? The reformation period was one of needed showcasing coming from the Catholic background, because it too is liable for what it has caused to set up it’s self as ‘the one and only church’.

What has to happen with christianity, is start at the beginning to see God’s blueprint of His World,His Creation, His People and follow it. Not start something new, or personal, or inclusive, or exclusive. It is God’s Creation, He is working with His creation to put its self right, the way that it was.

1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. 4 In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. 5 The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.

New American Standard Bible: 1995 Update (La Habra, CA: The Lockman Foundation, 1995), Jn 1:1–5.

It’s a New Day, It’s a New Creation!! Hallelujah!!

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Inspiration

My thirst for the scripture, Truth, and God is addicting and exciting!

I am usually all over the board as far as my research,studies,and curiosity to religion and christianity.

I want to make a bold statement Here. “I believe, that in our life ‘In Christ,Christ in Us, that we ‘all need’ to be this way of 24/7 life.” When I say this, I mean that we need to ‘know Logos’, the word, God’s life shared with us on the topic of “US”!

God gave us his word, for all to read or hear. It should be a daily work of everyone to read the word. I believe that one should read the scriptures and books of the bible in a more narrative way from God, His story is ‘One Story’ throughout the bible. There is a paradigm in God’s story. We have to ‘all’ read the whole bible to ‘see’ the narrative of the bible. We can then see the particulates of the journey in the storyline thru-out the passages. We seem to get caught up in the minimal passages of statements, that can derail our thoughts of the overall theme, but we need to see all the connections of things in scripture to lead us the whole paradigm of God’s plan.

I see that this ‘illiterate’ biblical christians has and is happening in the ‘church’ now.God’s word is for all, not just for “One” . One, This would make the ‘church’ so much stronger in belief,faith, and as the Image of God in the world, but two, I believe that it will bring a ‘one mind,one spirit’ to the people of God.

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Curious

I have a small following from my blogs, but I have an wide reach in the world I believe, it is a 50-50 ratio of people in the US and the rest of the world. I would like to hear from the ‘rest of the world’ followers in what seems to be the ‘important’ issues that are being discussed or being a sticky point with people?

This is an exercise for me on how around the world the topics of Christianity is the same or different in its reality with the people inside of it. I am interested in the dynamics of christianity around the world in the scheme of things. I would like to experience the differences of what, why, the paradigm that they are in. I believe that the ‘Western Church’ is ‘different’ or on its own mission.

So, please help me ‘see’ and know the other christianity around the world!

Share your own story of religion,church, christianity to me! I will cherish all that do! Thanks

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Body of Christ

What is it??

There have been alot descriptions that I have heard coming from the pulpit, from people, from books, and from just weird analogies.

I believe that we have used some normal tendencies of what we would try to call the physical one of using the human body as the model of Christ. But this somehow seems to be deficient in its actual example of Christ. I think this is because we use the example of the body having so many parts to it to coincide with our quoting a favorite verse in Ephesians 4:11 “And his gifts were that some should be apostles,some prophets,some evangelists, some pastors and teachers.”

What we have to remember is that this statement is coming from a ‘human,flesh’ way of our ‘being’ in the world. Is this what God is trying to do in our world? Is He trying for us to be ‘good’ christians, to be the answer to everyone’s problems? Or is there something more, different, or Spiritual?

What we also must ‘see’ in this statement when it is used, is it’s context. There are only three words in this phrase. But if we look at it ‘let’s say back words’ we might ‘see’ it. Christ is not only the ‘Head’ of the Body, He is all the Body!! Colossians 3:11 says “Here there cannot be Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian,Scythian,slave,free man, but Christ is all and in all.

Christ is all and in all. Just trying to put a picture to this, it would look like to me that Christ’s Body’s essence is also Him. We are to be Christ. Of the Spirit.

What I see in God’s portraying of his ‘renewing’ of man in our pews or speaking,teaching, or portraying in our mission statements, is not what is said in the scriptures. It was the spirit, that was changed in the garden, therefore it is the Spirit that God is restoring in man at the Cross. All things are new, in Christ’s Resurrection, Man’s Spirit is not only New But it is Christ’s Spirit, the Creator of the World.

By understanding this Epiphany of Christ, we should or we have to shed alot of the same things that hold us back from this picture. Nothing else matters, God wants us back in the fold, his child, his heirs, his people!

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Productive Year

Reading is my ‘middle name’. Ok, not really.

I love to learn. I don’t have a set number of pages to read per year, but I do have certain books that I set out each year to read, depending on the size of the books that I can fit in for the year. The books that I have read this year as follows:

The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha Vol1-1000 pages

The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha Vol 2-1000 pages

The Idea of Israel in Second Temple Judaism 348 pages

Kingdom through Covenant 904 pages

Reversing Hermon 331 pages

Jesus as the fulfillment of the Temple in John 300 pages

Jesus thru middle eastern eyes 443 pages

I am finishing up Josephus the last few months this year, which will add 600 more pages. It seems that almost read 5,000 pages this last year.

I enjoy the learning of each subject or theme of a book, or a OT Pseud.(alot of unfinished material, or excerpts of things to get something from them) But there is always something to ‘see’ in all of the material.

I am trying to narrow my interests in subject matters for books, it is really,really hard, but I am down to maybe four that I will now concentrate on. I am always getting side tracked with a conversation with someone and I will devote some time to flush my knowledge and research out to see and know the topic. (As we all should do, when confronted with a subject of the bible whether new or old.)

I will probably do some research on my four subjects of interest, on further study and go from there. I intend to give myself some time to gather some of my thoughts on these matters and write them down for my clarity and usage for sharing.

I am excited to get next year started on this. But what I am always writing,speaking, sharing with anyone that I expound on, is it is apart, or it is the “The Eternal Purpose” of God that will be the true focus of all that I do or share. I wish all of you to also reflect on what is God’s will in the Bible? With any story or beginning, it has to be the “Beginning of the Story” that exemplifies the thought of what the Author or God is trying to do, not the literal one, but the Analogy of what God is doing!

Let’s all look at Genesis 1-2, What is God’s plan? How is He going to restore His Plan?(Hint: its in Revelation 21-22.)

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Brother, lend me your ear

I find it worrisome, that many of our brethren(sisters,too) are afraid of being,talking, or discussing theology, if it is not of the same theology as theirs.

Any bible reading person knows that this is so wrong in so many ways.

But my question is “Why”?

Are we not led to ‘listen’ to our fellow man,christian, or non-christian for wisdom to their ears?

I find this sorta ironic when someone is stern with the coming of the christians to a building to discuss God, but you cannot on the ‘outside’ of the walls of the building!

It is in this “Evangelical” crowd(which seems to be fading, good!) that has always pushed the ‘witnessing’ of people to the inth degree, that has baffled me, in their earnestness of accomplishing this knowledge.

I am, I think one of very few(at least, around me) that loves talking bible,God, eternal purpose with anyone, anytime, and anywhere. I have picked this ‘fun’ thing to stimulate me in the ways of the Lord in the past 20 years. My thirst for ‘wisdom’ has been thru the bible, videos,talks,lectures, blogs, in-person, youtube, and alot of books(the # changes weekly,lol)

I sometimes wonder, if the average christian is thinking,searching God on a daily basis? I do not see it as a burden or stupid or just weird, I see it as “getting to know my God as personally as I can”.

How often do you spend with God?

How do you spend time with God?

Can your friends tell you are different in asking,searching, studying or reading about God?

Give me some feedback on how and what you do to get closer to God?

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Every Generation

I follow alot of people, either by email,blog,websites, text,facebook,youtube,authors, or video. One that I follow is N.T. Wright, that I have alot of his books. I also watch alot of his talks,sermons, or Q and A sessions.

One of the things that I have always remembered from a talk he had was that “Every person,christian or not, will evaluate his present condition, and decide if it is the one that he is content in”(paraphrased) This is what every generation of people are faced with when they stand up to their life and life beliefs.

I had not even thought about this, until it was happening to me. I started to questioning my beliefs, my institution, my lifestyle, and my faith. When this came about, my “reconstruction” was with the institution of the “Church”, what was it, what does it look like, what does it do? and was it what I was experiencing.This was my starting point. Biblical exegesis is what I started to delve myself into over 12+ years ago. It has not let up in my studying,reading, and soaking everything in thru reading the Word. Recently I have expanded my portfolio of reading by reading the Apochrapha, Pseudepigrapha,Old Sea Scrolls, and Josephus, with the near future will starting the adventures of Jewish literature.

What we must realize in reading the scriptures is that the more we understanding not the ‘stories’ but the theme or more importantly the “Paradigm” of the Bible,God’s Word for His Eternal Purpose. We sometimes forget to ‘See’ the forrest, because we are in front of a 90′ Redwood, that we think is the entire forrest. Nope. God’s story is the whole forrest. It is a narrative from Genesis thru Revelation.

I have personally witnessed people that are still standing in front of that Redwood and think this is all there is of God and they are proclaiming that ‘tree’ is God, or that tree is what God wants us to believe in, and only that tree. This is so wrong. At so many levels.

Maybe, Just maybe this is what the problem is in christianity, everyone is standing in front of their own Redwood proclaiming that the answer to God is their redwood! Oh My! We need to step back, way way back to see the whole forrest and God’s design of His World for His people, and His place of Rest and come to the realization that it is bigger than they thought!

I will almost say that it is actually easier than everybody thinks it is. What if we just did the verses below:

2 Corinthians 13:14 (RSV)
14 The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.
Galatians 2:20 (RSV)
20 I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me; and the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

Nothing else matters.

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Time for the “Book Review”

The book most recently read was entitiled “The Idea of Israel in Second Temple Judaism” by Jason A. Staples.

I would highly recommend this book for the clarity of the terms for “Israel”,”Jew” and “Hebrew”. I would also recommend any book about this subject, you would be surprised by how some things in the scriptures will clear up for you when reading things.

This is another example, where we can get ourselves going down the wrong road with our ‘asuming’ definition of something and you find out the statement you say, is not factual. There are many things as christians that we mean to go back and do some research on terms, definition, stories, paradigms, allegory,literal, types, metaphors, and parables! I recommend that we all do it!

Staples does a very good job of detailing what the people, inside and outside of ‘Israel’ , What prophets meant by their usage of each word, and when it changed to a subset of one, or vica versa. It was very informative to the understanding of even within the ‘Jewish’ community in which they were apart of. Within these three definitions of this said ‘group’ it would change when an event happened to one or all of the group. Depending on when the word Israel was used in could be meaning just the northern tribe, or it could mean both the northern and southern tribe, Judah. This was used in knowing of the original setup, but also of the reuniting of them both in the eschatology of Israel, and their prophets.

A added bonus of this book, was a subset of a theme that was carried out in the telling of the story of these three terms. It was the underlining story of the “Covenant Theology” laced throughout the telling and believing ‘Israel’ that they would ‘all’ be brought back together as one. It is this, that brought me even more assured on what covenantal Theology of God’s desires for All to be “ONE”.

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New Focus

Aimlessly walking I was.

As a good bible reader, I was all over the place in my searching, researching,learning, and just nit-picking my way thru the bible.

But I have found my niche, finally.

I have been asking my self, should I try to focus on 3 or more of different themes that I was currently interested in or should I really focus on one thing. And if I did, what would it be?

Through my various journeys of traveling thru different avenues of the bible, I believe that I have found the one that actually could be said to be the foundation of all the other themes that I had been studying. So the New Focus for me will be in the Old Testament Era (yes, this not what I expected either) the “2nd Temple Era”!!

I have thru my studies come across a what I believe is a very foundational aspect of the scriptures, that what I had thought was being used as a foundation of theology, wasn’t it seems to those that I have either talked to,listened thru sermons, or blogs of various authors(to my surprise)! I will weave this foundational premise or paradigm into the studies of the “2nd Temple Era” study. I hope we can do this maybe in a Chronological order but if things dictate that we skip ahead or even go back to relook at something to have it fit in to the whole story, we will.

Just for those who don’t know when the 2nd temple era was, it was ‘586 bc to 70 ad. Let me know if you have questions or comments on anything we talk about. Discussion is good, and most importantly it is learning and forming our minds to God.

Let us begin our Journey!!

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Where is God?

This is not the story of searching, where you see God in the World, but something different.

The relevance of this piece is rather unique in that it will show us what the ‘Temple’ is, and all the story behind it.

As an ‘after the fact’ observer when we read the beginning of the creation of the World by God, we really don’t understand the nuances of what God is doing. Sure, he is building this big blue marble with water, land,sky,trees,birds,animals,rivers,lakes,grass,sun,moon,planets surrounding it in the sky. What is the significance of it? God makes it for some people that he will create to live on the planet. It is what we would now call it “Heaven on Earth”*. We will come back to this later.

If we follow the story of Genesis 1-2, we will also notice that God’s creation is perfect for man and for God. So much, that God lives with Adam and Eve, walking, talking with each other all day long. They are in the Garden of Eden, Where man and God are together.

Now, let us fast forward a little ways in the story, we know the transgression of adam and eve, that creates mankind to go astray. It is when God brings together His people called “Israel’ and unites them together as one and then gives them instructions to help them stay God’s people by setting up a place for them to give their sacrafices for their transgressions to God as individuals, and as the group “Israel”, and even the High Priest sacrifice was given in this ceremony.

The High Priest was ‘one of one’ that could even be ‘Holy’ enough to ‘be’ with God in this room called ‘Holy of Hollies’, This was the only place in the entire world that God was touching in his ‘being’ and presence on the earth. It was because of man’s transgression, that God was now only a pinpoint in the world, instead with his creation in a garden.

Although this setup of a Temple, for the Israel kingdom was one for just Israel, It was actually a microcosm of the original one that God had created in the beginning of time. This was/is the blueprint of God’s Kingdom. But let’s clarify something here, before some get lost in their thinking. What God is showing us very special. Even tho I have described this large, glorious and splendid Temple that was in Jerusalem at one time. The majority of the Temple was used for giving of sacrifices and all that went with it.

There was a Portico, a place for semi-large congragating to talk and discuss religious things before going into ‘Holy of Hollies’ , which only the High Priest was able to go into. This “Space”, is actually the space that we can compare or use as the illustration of the ‘Temple’, the ‘place’ where God abides. Another illustration would be the use of ‘Clouds and Fire’ to lead Israel on their way for a journey. He was ‘with’ His people. Their are many examples of this in the scriptures, to show the Lord’s presence with man.

This space in the temple, was limited in size and people, one person in a room of 20 cubits squared. Small and limited to say the least in where God was.

It wasn’t until Christ resurrection that things changed. Christ’s New life and Kingdom was now established, albeit in different and totally new way. The curtain was rent from Heaven, signaling that ‘All’ would be able to be in the same place with Him, for He is now in the world for all mankind. God would not only leave this small and confining space but He would ‘go’ and be with man again in his creation. This is the story of a ‘full circle’ paradigm, that God does not change his plans for anything.

This plan of creation for his creatures, ‘all of his creatures’,man,animal,creation,heavens’ will again be back together. This scenario is one that is lost in our process of ‘learning’ things of the scriptures, but it is a major one to ‘see’ what God is doing.

God’s ‘picture’ of the Garden of Eden is one of Creator and Creation together as One.

If you can, try watching a short video by ‘The Bible Project’ group that shows this exact paradigm in a video. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zy2AQlK6C5k&t

God’s ‘church’ or people are one and the same. We are God’s. We are one, in Spirit,Mind and Truth.

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My Top Ten List

I have not put out my top list in awhile, since I have read a few more books since last time! LOL That goes without saying! Ha.

So Here Goes-

  1. From Eternity to Here by Frank Viola
  2. Surprised by Hope by N.T. Wright
  3. Love Wins by Rob Bell
  4. Paul and the Faithfulness of God by N.T. Wright
  5. Kingdom through Covenant by Peter J. Gentry/Stephen J Wellum
  6. Paul and Palestinian Judaism by E.P. Sanders
  7. The Mysticism of Paul the Apostle by Albert Schweitzer
  8. Jesus Manifesto by Leonard Sweet/Frank Viola
  9. Galatians(Commentary) by N.T. Wright
  10. A Larger Hope? by Ilaria L E Ramelli

So, What do you think? Have you read any of these? What is your Top Ten Christian List?

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I had a revelation.(Again)

Well, I have been on a hiatus of sorts. I have been busy with a vacation, a motherly visit from mom and a ponderace of what my desire is, in the last three weeks. But I am back and a ready to go again.

Revealations are funny. They can be good or they can be bad. And sometimes they just come to you by the most awkward time, make you just sit there and let you just talk to yourself, and I would be just in amazement, in my revelation.

I have talked and written the same old things and told people that I read. Alot. My library is full of books of all kinds of topics of Christianity. But what else I have in my library, are bibles, different sizes, colors, shapes, and versions. I have read the whole bible thoroghly maybe 5 times. Now I don’t know if this has any barring on my revelation, but it might.

I am a product of a pastor’s life and home. I am a preacher’s kid. I have heard the “Word” all my life. Either on purpose, or just hearing it throughout my childhood. My ‘learning’ the bible has I think for me has been an ‘internal’ one. What I mean by that, it has been one where I have put the pieces together of everything biblical understanding in my head. I never ‘preached’, talked, or whispered my beliefs per se to anyone. Until about 15 yrs ago.

It is when at this time, I noticed what I had in my head, was not what the ‘local’ church was ‘preaching’! It was something different. There was no meaning to it. No direction. No life. I had questions, more than answers to the message that had shared with me. I was questioning everything with my response of “Why”?

I had queries of the local ministry, of multiple subjects and of even more importantly were the answers that they were giving. I then expanded my questioning of not just the ‘local’ church, but also to the denomination of said church, to see if it was adhering to ‘their’ beliefs. It was a journey to see that the last two ‘denominations’, which were very much alike in their beliefs, were very much ‘saying’ and ‘preaching’ the same thing. I had one of those ‘aha’ moments. It was then that I even expanded more to ‘other’ denominations of christianity to see what ‘they’ were ‘preaching’. It was then, that things or ‘beliefs’, or understandings of the Bible story started to unravel for me, it was an eye-opening moment(not my newest revelation) to realize that there was an different ‘format’ which everyone was using to ‘preach’ the quote ‘message'(gospel). This intrigued me.

It was then, that I realized that not only the message was off, but it was being done in the wrong format. The ‘format’ that I had swirling in my head, did not match the things that I was seeing at the local or denominational level. It was a cookie-cutter model in which it was obviously not working in which it was to be designed.

Let me explain something that might be confusing in what I said. What I was ‘hearing’ and being ‘preached’ to me in my early years of youth and the early adulthood, was my hearing and understanding the ‘storyline’ of the bible was ‘not’ what was being explained or ‘preached’ from my pew seat. Even tho, most of my life’s pew sitting was with my father in the pulpit. I was not ‘seeing’ what most people were ‘hearing’. It was being stored up in my knowledge bank for a complete expounding at a latter time. It was about 15 yrs ago that it finally came out.

I believe that thru all this ‘seeing’ and ‘hearing’ things from various viewpoints that I have seen various things in the scriptures that just don’t add up to the ‘Message'(Gospel). It is then, that I felt like I needed to start saying things to people, thru blogs and random thoughts on social media, to get things rolling with people(christians) to double check their beliefs and their structure in the bible and God. What was the Bible really about? I have had my desenters in my take on my ‘seeing’ things different, than their views, but this was to be expected. The rut that christians have been in, is the cause, and the effect, of being ‘a sunday christian’.

The bible doesn’t say that.

It is so much more. It is a story. It has a storyline that is told in a narrative of God’s people, and their journey thru the annals of time. What is key to this story is the beginning, and the end! They are the same. This should be a clue to us! Every mystery book reader knows this!

It is in this storyline of God’s plan that has befuddled christianity(IMO) and it is not just coming from me, their are other people or groups that are ‘preaching’ this. Narrative stories are designed to ‘tell a story’, ‘tada’! LOL. In this narrative, God is not only telling an historic story but a story of everlasting meaning. This is where I will use a statement that always needs to be said. “The Bible is not written ‘for’ us, but ‘to’ us.! So what this should tell us is that these scriptures from God have to have meaning for alot of generations of people and years of social change to understand it.

It is here that we have change our ‘understanding’ of the scriptures. To express God’s eternal purpose, he has to change it so ‘everyone’ will ‘see’ the meaning and ‘truth’ of his desire. God uses different methods of doing this. God uses ‘types’, ‘symbols’, ‘imagery’, ‘foreshadowing’, ‘metaphors’ and ‘Allegory’.

It is allegory that has been missed in the ‘churches’ hearing in the scriptures.

This is where ‘one’ of my latest ‘revelations’ of the christianity’s downfall has been a glaring feeblemindness. Not ‘seeing’ Allegory in the scriptures. Maybe, just maybe it will come to us, when we have the ‘mud’ wiped off of our ‘eyes’ that we may see it.

The ‘revelation’ that I am saying is that the ‘story’ of the Israelites of being God’s people of Israel, and their subsequent disobedience of ‘worshipping’ Him, by being banished to ‘Egypt'(Babylon,the world), is the allegoric story of mankind as a ‘whole’ that has ‘left’ God for their own ways(worldly), and are now slaves to it. It is then that God pulls his people back to him so that ‘they'(mankind) can worship ‘their’ God.

Exodus 9:13 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Rise up early in the morning and stand before Pharaoh and say to him, “Thus says the Lord, the God of the Hebrews, ” Let my people go, that they may serve Me.

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Kingdom

:a country,state, or territory ruled by a king or queen. 2. the spiritual reign or authority of God.

The above are the definitions of the said ‘Kingdom’. It can be either a physical area of various sizes to be ruled by a king or queen. Or it can be a ‘spiritual reign or the authority of God.

Do you ‘see’ the difference?

There are two main ones that we will discuss. The first one is the ‘location’ or the physicality of the ‘kingdom’. One is an kingdom on earth of a small or large land mass of an kingdom authority by one has the ability to rule over the area. It is one of a human king being self elected or by ruthlessly taking over land with subjects in them to rule over them. It will most deniable going to be in either case not a good king if he had to force his way into the position.

The other kingdom is of the Spiritual realm in which a deity is seen as the one of Kingly rights. In this case God is the one that is touting his reign of authority and supremacy over the whole earth. It is foreshadowed in the ‘God of the Creation’ that has built the Kingdom before time was time. This reign is not of this world, considering that it per-existed before time and creation, so it was of another matter. One of a ‘Spirit’.

Now for the second difference. The first one is a place where there has been conquered land, that has been won by an army of a king, and his announcement that as the king of this army and conquest of this land, He is the king of all of it. It is one of a seen land, a place of human form of the essence of a human’s accomplishment. The end of all things to accomplish, the height of all things to be or want. It is an organization of humanity to bring it together as one. But is it?

Spiritual reign, now this is different. This is from an outside source, not of his own ability, but of one of higher power or of a God, or both. God’s reign is of Him. Every piece of his fiber of God is what he stands for and is, is being represented in his Kingdom and His image of a King. It is what the Kingdom is also. Everything. Every part of the Kingdom oozes the Spirit of God in his Kingdom.

Now, when we use these illustrations of a ‘kingdom’ it almost seems like we want a ‘kingdom’ but we want to build it they way we want to in our image of a human kingdom? but why? Isn’t the ‘Kingdom God’s’, and did he not say that He will build it!, mainly he makes it in His own essence and Spiritual way, and not of the way of man and his ability to crudely make an ‘kingdom’ and everything that comes with it.

Man cannot rule by a Spiritual Authority, only God can.

God’s Kingdom, is designed for an ‘Eternal Purpose’.

Man’s Kingdom, is designed for ‘sinful humility’.

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Life after Death

I am sitting on my patio tonight, in a swing with my feet up, and just relaxing and enjoying the best day of ‘spring’ of the Colorado season. We have had some un-springlike weather thru this early spring, so our spring like duty of bringing in those bright and colorful flowers that you are obligated to put out from your friendly box store of flowers has not come yet.

The only thing that has so-called life in our yard are the Perennials of the shrubbery or the ‘wild’ flowers in our yard. Which if you think about it seems rather amazing that these flowers and shrubs could die and then come back to life, is nothing short of a miracle. I looked at these plants during our ‘winter’ and I am sure that they were dead, they had no life, they were not what they were designed to be or show in their fullest glory. They were dead.

So how did they ‘become’ alive again? What happened during that season of death? What was happening to make it ‘dead’? But happened under the soil that would spurn on the ingredients of bringing something back to life? Did it do something on its own? Did someone come along and do something to revive it? Or was it something bigger that happened that only He could only do to bring life back from the grave?

Oh Yeah, the Creator, the maker, the Gardener, The Man upstairs, My God, My Lord and Savior. All things are possible. God brings back life to the things that I see every year, all our trees lose their leaves in the fall, but they come back to life in the spring with bigger and better life of leaves.

Now I don’t know how those trees, flowers, shrubs, or wild things were in their age of sprouting or dying, whether they were trying to be what they were designed to do or not, but they came back to life, either way that they acted. God gave them life every spring for 25 yrs.

Life comes After death.

Always.

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“Your Kingdom come. Your will be done,On earth as it is in Heaven”

I wonder if maybe we have forgotten about this statement in the bible.

I think we have gotten all wrapped up in this ‘church’ thing that we have forgotten that God’s Kingdom is here now, and is coming to its fullness in the future.

I believe I know why Christ said what He said in His profound statement “And I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it. Matt. 16:18

We have tried to move in on Him to do his work of his kingdom, When it is the King of the said Kingdom that builds the Kingdom. I have alot of issues with people in discussing this with the understanding of what this means.

A Proclamation, an announcement, a invitation, a phone call, an email, a letter, are ways that exactly the same as what the ‘Gospel’ is. It is a notice that something is new, different, or worth shouting about. The Gospel is proclaiming that God is King! God has stepped into his creation, in the middle of time, of man and his ways to say that “His Kingdom is starting”, it is building to a crescendo to make it full of Him.

We have missed out on what the scriptures are and were telling us as we read it the first time. I have told multiple people that I converse with that the bible is a narrative, a story that God is telling about his creation and his image in that creation. Read the scriptures from front to back, take your time and ‘eat it'(this is what is called eating ‘Christ’) chewing each thing 6 times(lol), it is a narrative, a story, to be told in this specific way so that we will know the character and mind of God and his purpose, his eternal purpose.

The story is NOT about a building(church) that we need to worry about, it is the mind and heart of all his images(his people) to be in Him and Him to be in Us. We are to be one. We are to be an Image of God.

God’s kingdom was in the first few pages in the bible. It is characterized in a more plain and bare example of what it was, but it was an illustration of what it is. We revolted. We wanted our own version of a kingdom. Let’s look back at history and see how that has worked out?! lol

God again gives his special images of God, Israel, as another example of ‘the Kingdom’ in the first of what we always think of a kingdom in our minds and our drawings. It is this that we need to keep in mind when we now continue reading the scriptures of the narrative for us to get the right picture. God is faithful. Yes, He is, He has created a ‘New Covenant'(Kingdom of God), and He is going to have it. He will build it, He will build with his son helping him. Jesus, Christ and Savior will be the catalyst for the dawn of the Kingdom.

Matt 6:10 “Your Kingdom Come, Your will be done, on Earth as it is in Heaven”. This verse I could use as a major screw up in christian theology in it’s usage over the last 400 yrs. “Where did we see in this verse that we were going “To Heaven” at any time? This thought process has been used for the evangelical’s in their message with out any understanding of it!! I don’t understand it!!

But now that we know that the “Kingdom has started, and has started here on earth, and it will continue into it’s fruition. We can finally ‘see’ and ‘hear’ what the “Gospel” is and enjoy God’s Kingdom to its fullest!!

Praise God, Hallelujah, and Amen.

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God’s Word continues to give and give and…….

I have had a few instances in the last few months with fellow christians that feel that they can stand pat in the knowledge of God’s word. This scares me, I mean really scares me!

God’s word is like the ‘Energizer Bunny’, it continues to give and give to use to further the knowledge and wisdom of God.

It seems that once someone feels comfortable in their skin of righteousness they believe they have it ‘all’, and need no more insight from God and his words that they refuse any brotherly discussion of any or all said discussions being fruitful, which is very sad.

Iron sharpens Iron.

What I think is very hypocritical of this is that they stand on their premise of going to a church to be with their fellow ‘christians’ to fellowship with them in the weekly bible study. Now the bible studies(real bible theology discussions) that I have always been in, are nothing short of differing opinions of positions of their beliefs. It would (in my circumstance, that we had a vary degree of people from different backgrounds of religion) we were always cordial in our discussion but we were always talking things out so that we all knew where we were coming from.

I would surely say that true biblical studies should be in this context of ‘What do the scriptures really say to God’s people’? This has gone on for a few thousand years and it will continue to do so until God has us as ‘One Sound Mind, One Sound Heart’!!

This totally messes with my mind, in that for the first point, ‘Did you not start with an ‘Theology’ that you believed in already and now you completely changed it in a matter of seconds? Or you deny the furtherance of learning new things in and about the scriptures that could have one or multiple ‘aha’ moments in your thinking?

One thing I have noticed in some ‘christian’ searching for their theology, is that they went about it in a bad way of weighing their research for it. It seems that the way that some people ‘learn’ or ‘research’ their religion, is to just go to that ‘church’ and have them tell you what their religion is all about, ins and outs, and here is the pen to sign on the dotted line! What? It is like going to auto dealer, say a ford dealer, He is going to try and sell you a ford car, since you are looking for a car. He is going to tell all the good things of the ford, but not the bad things, or tell you that other car dealers,chevy,buick, toyota,jeep,etc are good too. This is like pulling sheep over your eyes?!

For the second point, it seems that from other people that they see that maybe your decision making of the biblical resources have been limited with testimonial sharing with people that says that you could be suspect to wrong informed decisions. Our journey with God does not stop. period. In fact in doesn’t stop for anyone or anytime until God has decided to bring back the New Kingdom to his Creation..

I see a problem with some christianity sects that seem to be very inclusive, in that it is ‘their way or No Way’ thinking. This seems to be a stumbling block for Christians and Christianity if this is to be continued. God will tell us what is ‘The Way’ and When. I have not seen it or heard it,yet. I feel that it is working itself out in christianity as we speak.

This also is ironic in its subject matter that I see and hear this in the U.S. , America has got all the answers about religion and Christianity! Not! The failure of these sects that feel that they are in the know of the ‘right’ way, have no understanding that there is a whole world out there that probably can and will disagree with them. It is that famous saying that needs to hit the box of the church to “Believe outside of the BOX”

The world is what God is saving, I know, I know, The United States really needs saving the most right now, but that’s not what the bible tells us. It is the world that he is worried about. It will be what the whole world ‘needs’ to hear and believe in to ‘see’ and ‘know’ Him! It will be a Universal Language.

If we cannot talk or meet with our fellow believers, how are we going to talk or meet with the unbelievers?



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John- The New Kingdom

I have always thought that the Gospel of John was the ‘Crescendo’ of the story of the Bible. But to really know what it is really saying is key to knowing what the beginning of the bible is telling us. All aspects of the bible are important.

I believe that for us to understand the Gospel of John, we have to read and understand what Genesis,Exodus, Leviticus, and Deuteronomy tell us in the first hints of God’s story. It is crucial that we do this. Each one of these books tells us an very important segment of the storyline, each one a different part, not one more important than the other, but important. They are historical, but they also lay the groundwork or foundation to the Gospel of John in the realization the the story is much bigger and is from a different world. The books of the bible do this in various themes that it incites us to look deeper into God’s eyes and soul to know.

Let me point out something right here at this point, That God is so amazing at his logical and illogical things that he brings us to in our world, even tho it makes us stop and ponder and think and be in the mind of our creator. One mind, One Spirit. Even the most studious bible reader may not catch why John’s gospel is in the order that it is, it is there for a reason.

John’s gospel, is the final frontier of God’s Heaven Trek. It is what comes to fruition when all things have been put back to rights. (this is statement that one of my authors says that puts it exactly the way it needs to be said) God has created a storyline that has wonderful beginning that takes a fork in the road, then he plans for that storyline to comeback to the original road to put things back to rights!

God created a Kingdom in the beginning. It was called the Garden of Eden, it was the realm where God(King),Garden of Eden(the land), and his people (christians) are to reign together forever. It was Heaven on earth! Let’s stop again, to define something that has historically been misidentified as to what it was,Heaven.

If we realize that all of us, now and past,and future people that are born will be citizens of the earth. It is just obvious where we have our citizenship. We also have a citizenship that is subletted even more by the country, or state, or providence that we live in. Our world is one of our making by who we are and by how we see fit to rule ourselves as a society. We have a plethora of ways to do this all around the world.

But it is different when we talk about the Creator who created everything we see, everything we participate in, everything that we have, and everyone around us. God created everything for ………..MAN! Not man for the world, as everyone seems to think. Now think of the directionality of the phrases of this statement. God created everything for Man. God created the Kingdom(earth) for man! Everything! including himself, God talked to adam and eve in the Garden of Eden, He walked with them daily with their Creator! How cool was that! A God actually having a connecting with his creation.

This is a stark contrast later in the story of the roman and greek stories being far off from their ‘so called’ creations that they never saw them or talked to them, they had to make themselves the replica’s of them as a idol in their ‘temples’ to worship. Now how is god a god if you are to make a ‘image’ of them with your own hands?

God made his own image of himself. US! WOW!!!! We are HIS Image!! Guess what, He made us as an image of Him, in His own Temple! The Earth!! WOW, how neat is that! God wants to be with His creation again!

Can you see it Now? Look back at the beginning of Genesis 1-2 chapters to see the creation of the world, Now look at what John’s Gospel is saying and foreshadowing of things to come. IT IS THE SAME!!

It is the exact same picture that God made in the beginning that he is restoring back to rights!!

This is the Storyline of the scriptures that God has made and restored to Him the ‘Eternal Purpose’!!!

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Christianity, what is it saying?

Don’t know about you, but I think they are saying the wrong thing.

Studying the New Testament, from Matthew to Revelation, it seems to be pushing this thing called “Kingdom of God”. What I don’t hear from chrisitanity is “Kingdom of God”, but I seem to be hearing week after week, we need to go out and bring the sheep in out of the cold, and let us take care of them.

Although, that last statement might sound right to us(only because we have heard it from the pulpit),but the storyline we must hear is that we are now in the “Kingdom of God” with God and his people molded into one, God in us,us in Him. This is the story of the “Restoration of God’s World” that is told in the New Covenant.

We for to long have taken this storyline upon ourselves to take it further in our own humanistic ways. Which totally is not what God has said in scripture. What we done, I believe, in Christianity, and Catholicism have seen the literalization of God’s word’s to Peter ” I will build MY Church upon you”. We have taken this as our War cry to use for us to take it further on ourselves to champion the call to do this on our own, No God needed! God’s exclamation with Peter was a call on humanity was one of this is the first stone(Peter realized that Jesus was the Messiah,first to acknowledge this,even from the disciples)He would be put next to the cornerstone(Himself) to start the ‘building’ of His Body(Ekklesia). This is the ‘Picture’ that was to be ‘seen’ by the disciples and to the world.

Jesus presence in the human world was first an ‘on hands experience’ to be with his fellow humans(He was 100% man, and 100% God) He was showing man that His God side was being shown too, in his healing people, out of this world wisdom,His power, His New talk of the things to come, in his people to be ‘New’ in his Creation of the World.

This was a foretaste of the ‘New World’ of God’s Kingdom. God was inviting all to come and join him for this new experience.

If this is not what you are hearing from christianity, then we must correct our insight to ‘see’ that God is calling us to his Kingdom. It is now but not yet.

Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, then My servants would be fighting so that I would not be handed over to the Jews; but as it is, My kingdom is not of this realm.” John 18:36

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Perspective, it always helps.

I have said before in alot of my blogs, that we have to get back to the basics. Get back to context. But also we must get back to perspective in the minds of people, especially the ones in the early times of the Jews, and the old testament.

To many times we screw up in our process of thinking things thru of an argument or facts. One must always remember to ‘see’ the understanding of the people, era, social, events of time to have the right perspective.

Hear is such one, for you to just keep in your mind as you read scriptures in the bible to help you ‘see’ things clearly in their mind set into what they were using as a base of their logic. Keep this handy to go back and clarify something you have issues with. Do not use an illustration from any other time frame for biblical study. What ever you do, don’t use something from ‘today’s’ picture of the World.

The Earth as seen by first Christians

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Paradigm change…..

Paradigm is a word that I always say is one of my favorite words to use, mainly because it is event changer! lol

I use this word for alot my illustrations in biblical senses and also in just real life occurrences. This blog I hope gets you thinking about the subject of “Paradigms”, in mainly the subject of what it actually is, and then also of if you see ‘it’ in the scriptures of the Bible.

I read alot. When I read a book that is telling a story of say a historical narrative, there are always ebbs and flows of that historical story, especially of a long one. Sometimes in the story there is a ‘Major’, or ‘surprising’, or ‘unsuspecting’ occurrence that you would of never seen coming. It is this ‘thing’ that We will be talking about.

Let’s start with what I consider the obvious one of ‘different’ boundaries in objectives that are set out for us. This one, I am talking about is the differences we see in the bible, in that, it is divided into two parts, The Old testament, and the New Testament, It is here that I believe that it is the source of misunderstanding of what it is all about. The old testament, is a story of a people under a covenant to God, The New Testament is a story about a new covenant to ‘all people’. (Note-using ‘testament’ and ‘covenant’, is key to ‘hearing’ the right story in the bible. These two words mean different things, they are not interchangeable. We must use ‘covenant’ to ‘see’ the story right.)

The old covenant had boundaries, They were for the people of Israel, they had laws to abide with, their identity was shown in their ‘eating preferences’ and of the males being circumcised, and They kept Saturday as their ‘Holy’ day of God. This covenant was the description, the identity, the sign that they were of God’s people. Upon seeing an Israelite in the market shopping for food, and their selections did not include pork and sea crustaceans, meant that they were of Jewish belief. If you did not any of your friends on friday eve, meant that they were celebrating their ‘sabbath’ in worship. It was these things that were identity markers of the Israelites in that day.

Let’s now identify the New Covenant’s identifiers. Now first I am going to show the ones that are being used in our christianity model that is prevalent today. I will then suggest something different, and righteous. Let me just start out by saying this is sorta foggy from an outside perspective looking in, but let’s give it a try. I would like to start from the street angle first. I am not sure we can ‘identify’ a ‘christian’ (as opposed to an Israelite of the old covenant) it seems that the ‘christian’ has blended in with the rest of the crowd to as they were led to believe that if I mingled with them, I would be able to ‘be’ at their level and to talk to them about ‘Jesus’ and lead them to salvation. This is a problem. But there are a few that you can tel with mannerisms or subtle talking that can deduce a ‘difference’ from the normal society. There are no markings on a ‘christian’ to distinguish that they are one. They have no selective eating habits so to speak, unless it is one of preferences. The one that is still used for identity, is the one that they ‘see’ as Holy is the ‘Day of Sunday’ as God’s Day for worship.

Standing at a street corner and looking to identifying a ‘christian’ now is very hard. Unless it is a Sunday and you are standing on the church corner.

God chose identity markers for the Israelites for a special reason. Because they stood out, they ‘were’ different to other people’s eyes and ears.

It is still relevant for the ‘New Covenant’. Our current model is not of God’s identity markers. It is of ours.

God chose one identity, It was the “Holy Spirit”, this then would be producing the Love of God, and Love to others.

Let’s look at this and why.

The Promise of the Spirit

           28      “It will come about after this
     That I will pour out My Spirit on all mankind;
     And your sons and daughters will prophesy,
     Your old men will dream dreams,
     Your young men will see visions.
           29      “Even on the male and female servants
     I will pour out My Spirit in those days.

The Day of the LORD

           30      “I will display wonders in the sky and on the earth,
     Blood, fire and columns of smoke.
           31      “The sun will be turned into darkness
     And the moon into blood
     Before the great and awesome day of the LORD comes.
           32      “And it will come about that whoever calls on the name of the LORD
     Will be delivered;
     For on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem
     There will be those who escape,
     As the LORD has said,
     Even among the survivors whom the LORD calls.

New American Standard Bible: 1995 Update (La Habra, CA: The Lockman Foundation, 1995), Joe 2:28–32.

Now, if we were walking down the street of downtown ______________, You would be astounded at these people who were filled with the Holy Spirit and their wonders and ‘Life’ that they had of their God. Their ‘identity markers’ were not of a physical or action of the flesh but one that was coming from inside their being showing what their God is!

Maybe we should rethink the Paradigm that we ‘think’ is supposed to identify us to the world, and just let the Holy Spirit of the Lord do the talking for Us!

So, What do you say? Ready for a Paradigm shift!!

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Opposites?

I stumbled on to something today, while studying something else.

It is always like that with me, I will be researching some theme, word, or story in the scriptures and I ‘see’ something else that relates to some other story or theme. All tho it gets me sidetrack from my original studies, I welcome an ‘AHA’ moment anytime!

Everyone knows what it means by using ‘opposites’ in a conversation, right? When you tell some one directions to a restaurant either to turn right or left at the corner of 2nd street, or you tell them that the earth is round, and they say it is flat, or that things are either black or white. It is an ‘either or’ kind of thing.

Now, sometimes we might go just by our ‘assuming’ of what is read by the first condition of a supposedly either or statement, because we are used to it.

I think we may have done this with actually a statement in the bible, and used it throughout the bible as a definite presupposition. It comes in Genesis 2: 9 Out of the ground the LORD God caused to grow every tree that is pleasing to the sight and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Let’s look at this, starting with the second part of the verse, The tree of Life is in the midst of the garden and the tree of knowledge of good and evil is too. Did you see any opposite statements in that narrative? Neither did I.

In fact, there wasn’t anything that looked close to it. It was like it said “life and Knowledge” as the basic message of it. We have to start with the first statement of that there was “a Tree of Life, for this to be an “opposite’ scenario the last condition of the statement had to say “a Tree of Death”. But it doesn’t.

This is actually an avenue of ‘self acknowledgment ‘or ‘self identity’. This avenue, which if we break it down is one of the precursors of what we of society have called the period of time as “The Enlightenment” period where we have gone outside the realm of God and chose a realm of our own. This could be first ‘sign’ of the ‘individualistic narrative that was introduced into the gospel, altho it has always pointed to the ‘NT’ period for that. We can use this ‘use of knowledge of good and evil’ as a spiraling to the opposite of good, especially with a dose of ‘evil’. Nothing good usually comes with playing with evil, pun intended.

Let’s start with the obvious, (This here is exactly what I talk about is the issue of ‘the lack of biblical knowledge’ of the christians) I have used in my studies the ‘opposite’ method of some of my thinking. If we have been ‘offered’ a ‘Tree of good and evil’ for your use, then that would mean you didn’t have it to begin with, right. So God is giving you the ability to have it to use. I don’t know if we would understand the ‘concept of good and evil’ but for the sake of the argument let’s say we do. Satan says later, “that we are the same as God if have this knowledge of good and evil.” Digging deep into God’s world can and should lead us to the inner Spirit of His intentions. But in basic language, we have chosen to go on our own.

Now I know what you are going to say. That by knowing the things that have been said in the scriptures that ‘Our not choosing the Tree of Life’, automatically means “Death”. We have to take this argument just one more step deeper to find the ‘Truth’. Sometimes we can find the ‘Truth’ by what it doesn’t say. Yup.

Wouldn’t God if He was to give an ‘ultimatum'(this is what it is), He would of just said, “Do you want to pick an ‘apple from the tree of Life or the apple from the Tree of Death? If you want to go deeper still, if this would of been the question, I am thinking two things, one if I had chosen ‘Tree of Death’, wouldn’t I have been stricken dead instantly! Two, Who in their right mind would of not chose ‘Life’. (assuming we knew what life and death actually meant, yes this comes into play).

The Narrative of the story continues, which just all by itself, should tell us something. Did you ‘hear’ it? Did you ‘see’ it?

This scenario of the second tree, the ‘Tree of good and evil’ is an open ended scenario. There is that road that will get us back to the “Tree of Life”. Road back. Now, if you realize that it wasn’t you or me that built that road, It was already there. Then we must realize that the God of Creation built it.

Now, I don’t know if that road was yellow(OZ) or not, but I somehow think it might be stained with the color of ‘Red’.

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Kingdom of God-What is it?

We are going to delve into the Kingdom of God. All the questions that surround it and what it all means after we know them.

Jesus’s Ministry on earth was one of multiple facets. Jesus was on a mission. Mission from God.It was a one of ‘identity’,one of ‘reason’, and one of ‘salvation’. It was a Mission of intrigue.

We are going to concentrate on the end result or the ‘reason’ for all the mission.

The Kingdom of God is describe to us in Revelation’s 21st and 22 chapter. For a foundation on what we are dealing with I feel that we must all be on the same page. So here is the two chapters to read, we will continue with this in the next blog.

The New Heaven and Earth

1 Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth passed away, and there is no longer any sea. 2 And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be among them, 4 and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away.”

5 And He who sits on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” And He *said, “Write, for these words are faithful and true.” 6 Then He said to me, “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give to the one who thirsts from the spring of the water of life without cost. 7 He who overcomes will inherit these things, and I will be his God and he will be My son. 8 But for the cowardly and unbelieving and abominable and murderers and immoral persons and sorcerers and idolaters and all liars, their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”

9 Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues came and spoke with me, saying, “Come here, I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb.”

The New Jerusalem

10 And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me the holy city, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, 11 having the glory of God. Her brilliance was like a very costly stone, as a stone of crystal-clear jasper. 12 It had a great and high wall, with twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels; and names were written on them, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the sons of Israel. 13 There were three gates on the east and three gates on the north and three gates on the south and three gates on the west. 14 And the wall of the city had twelve foundation stones, and on them were the twelve names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.

15 The one who spoke with me had a gold measuring rod to measure the city, and its gates and its wall. 16 The city is laid out as a square, and its length is as great as the width; and he measured the city with the rod, fifteen hundred miles; its length and width and height are equal. 17 And he measured its wall, seventy-two yards, according to human measurements, which are also angelic measurements.18 The material of the wall was jasper; and the city was pure gold, like clear glass. 19 The foundation stones of the city wall were adorned with every kind of precious stone. The first foundation stone was jasper; the second, sapphire; the third, chalcedony; the fourth, emerald; 20 the fifth, sardonyx; the sixth, sardius; the seventh, chrysolite; the eighth, beryl; the ninth, topaz; the tenth, chrysoprase; the eleventh, jacinth; the twelfth, amethyst. 21 And the twelve gates were twelve pearls; each one of the gates was a single pearl. And the street of the city was pure gold, like transparent glass.

22 I saw no temple in it, for the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. 23 And the city has no need of the sun or of the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God has illumined it, and its lamp is the Lamb. 24 The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their glory into it. 25 In the daytime (for there will be no night there) its gates will never be closed; 26 and they will bring the glory and the honor of the nations into it; 27 and nothing unclean, and no one who practices abomination and lying, shall ever come into it, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life.

The River and the Tree of Life

1 Then he showed me a river of the water of life, clear as crystal, coming from the throne of God and of the Lamb, 2 in the middle of its street. On either side of the river was the tree of life, bearing twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit every month; and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. 3 There will no longer be any curse; and the throne of God and of the Lamb will be in it, and His bond-servants will serve Him; 4 they will see His face, and His name will be on their foreheads. 5 And there will no longer be any night; and they will not have need of the light of a lamp nor the light of the sun, because the Lord God will illumine them; and they will reign forever and ever.

6 And he said to me, “These words are faithful and true”; and the Lord, the God of the spirits of the prophets, sent His angel to show to His bond-servants the things which must soon take place.

7 “And behold, I am coming quickly. Blessed is he who heeds the words of the prophecy of this book.”

8 I, John, am the one who heard and saw these things. And when I heard and saw, I fell down to worship at the feet of the angel who showed me these things. 9 But he *said to me, “Do not do that. I am a fellow servant of yours and of your brethren the prophets and of those who heed the words of this book. Worship God.”

The Final Message

10 And he *said to me, “Do not seal up the words of the prophecy of this book, for the time is near. 11 Let the one who does wrong, still do wrong; and the one who is filthy, still be filthy; and let the one who is righteous, still practice righteousness; and the one who is holy, still keep himself holy.”

12 “Behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to render to every man according to what he has done.13 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.”

14 Blessed are those who wash their robes, so that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter by the gates into the city. 15 Outside are the dogs and the sorcerers and the immoral persons and the murderers and the idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices lying.

16 “I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things for the churches. I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star.”

17 The Spirit and the bride say, “Come.” And let the one who hears say, “Come.” And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who wishes take the water of life without cost.

18 I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues which are written in this book; 19 and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his part from the tree of life and from the holy city, which are written in this book.

20 He who testifies to these things says, “Yes, I am coming quickly.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.

21 The grace of the Lord Jesus be with all. Amen.

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Disturbing trend?

I love to have discussions on anything biblical based,christianity or theology. I can always start up an conversation with someone with just a comment, or an article that has caught my fancy. It is just the flowing of insight of other people and their perspectives. It is just a good ‘iron sharpening iron’ moment that we should take advantage of.

This is how we grow.

But I have come across some discussions that are not like this. This is what is happening, and it scares me that it is happening in some ‘religions’. People are not using God’s Word as ‘the Iron’ to sharpen other ‘Iron’, they are using a ‘script’ of ‘belief’ of their understanding from a ‘sect’ of religion, and they do not waver from it, it has been ingrained in their mantra that this is the only way to enlighten someone to their so called truth.

How did we get to this point of disregarding the bible in our weapon of choice in standing on the precipice of God? God has given us His Word for us to read,contemplate, digest, and interpret for ourselves to ‘see’ God. It is when use a man made ‘script’ of ‘ it is this or else, that will get us in trouble.

Shall we Pray?

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Do we have a biblical knowledge problem?

Let me just answer this upfront. Yes We do.

I am not one to come to if you need me to ‘quote’ you something from the bible from memory, but because I have read it multiple times over my life, I know somewhat the message is or can direct someone to where it speaks to this question. I can tell you if I have read something on this subject. My memory doesn’t allow me to remember things as much I would like. But I try.

Either people are really dumb, playing dumb, or only know things that people have fed them over the years, We have a really bad problem.

Does this need to get fixed? Yes

How do we do it then? My solution is, We need to clear our lives of the trivial stuff that we think is important to do or just to have fun in life, and get serious about our God!

But the dominant factor of this is the Acknowledgement that God is God and He is creator of the World and we are His image in it!

Until then, it will be a crazy,mixed up world as today.

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Adam,Eve

Are they ‘saved’?

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What’s your Passion?

Do you even have one?

God gave us the innate spirit within us to be with Him.

He gave it to all of us. Some of us have pushed ourselves to be in front of God’s purpose. God’s innate spirit is still there. It’s covered up.

We must forget ourselves, or better put, die to ourselves, and realize that we are to be with our maker in His world and His Kingdom, and His people.

Can we see that there is another kingdom out there? What does it look like? It is befitting to share this with the ideals that are swirling around the world, that this should be like this, I should be able to do what I want, I want to be looked as this person, or I should be free to do what ever I want. It is God that is ushering in the perfect paradigm for all. It is one that is perfectness in Him, in His World. Man has had over 8,000 years to try and perfect his ways to do good, but has failed.

God’s eternal purpose is coming into fruition as we speak, His ways are not ours. They are so much better. Our ‘good’ is so bad, God is the designer of ‘good’ when he created us and His world.

So why can’t we See it?

You tell me?

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Kingdom of God

People have their own thoughts on what it actually means when we say “Kingdom of God”.

But what does it mean? If we just start with the face value of the statement, we should get a pretty clear view of what it is. Let’s start with the first word, Kingdom. What does ‘kingdom’ mean? Dictionary defines it as “(Government, Politics & Diplomacy) a territory, state, people, or community ruled or reigned over by a king or queen”. This by definition is what we are talking about when we discuss the things of the old testament and the new testament.

In the old testament, the paradigm of a kingdom was that of the gentiles was the ruling military or political party that controlled the land by setting the laws and ideals for everyone. It was different for the Jewish people of Israel, their Kingdom was that of a ‘City’ Kingdom with their God as their King and their ways were of their God. It was like a microcosm of a larger model of the whole earth.

It was a reproduction of shadow from times past, one from the beginning of time, ‘Garden of Eden. It was a time of innocence and beauty of the creator and his creation. It was the paradigm of God’s ultimate eternal purpose.

Now, for the second word, God. Kingdom of God, this is possessive phrase of someone’s possession, a Kingdom. Kingdom of God, a kingdom which God rules, with His paradigm of rule. It is his right, by the mere fact of his creating the said world and putting all things below him. God’s desire for a people to be His people that would be of Him, and He in them. It is the true fulfilling of Love and Life.

Where should this lead us?

It is the acclamation of God’s creation. How then should we be doing or saying or living because of this? What is it that we should do? If we are to be apart of this ‘Kingdom’ we shall be apart of it. We shall be apart of it thru the ‘being’ which created it in his image of all things made of Love and Life.

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How does one discern God?

For me it is a couple of things, Studying the word, and Studying other people or groups that are discerning God.

Now, when I am studying for myself I am eclectic in my ways, I do not have(yet) a proven methodology of just doing one thing at a time. I am doing probably 10 things at a time, which I seem to like, because I haven’t changed much over the years. I have curiosities of different subjects on my mind at all times it seems so I am trying to tackle all of them at the same time. I am curious. This should be every christian in their walk with God. Never going without that everlasting water to feed us God.

Those that do not feel that they only need to spoon fed a drop of water on a certain day, seems to be just asking for it. How can one be ‘satisfied’ all week long, with just a spoonful? As was Paul when He was a pharisee was a zealous pharisee. He was a 100% pharisee. It was also the case when He became a disciple of Christ, He was fully enveloped into being one with Christ. Paul says so in multiple verses in his letters to this fact. He knew the scrolls, but he more importantly knew what they meant when God and Jesus were orchestrating things on earth and his people to know.

As in the beginning of the 1st century, there was multiple understandings of what God or Jesus was all about. The first issue that had to be worked out was, who Jesus was. Was he a man, was he a prophet, was he imposter,was he devil, was he a god, or was he all of the above? There is time where there is indecision for man to work out the paradigm that was just starting with Jesus on the scene. What did it mean. For the gentiles it was plethora of answers, for their world was wide open to anything. It is for the Jews that it was in their back of their heads, “Was this the ‘Messiah’ that we had been promised?”, How can we tell? People were giving all kinds of answers to these questions. It wasn’t until Jesus started to ask his own disciples(seems weird asking these men that had been following you around for months,who do you think I am?) who do you think I am? It was Peter that said “You are the Messiah”.

Some people believe that it is detrimental to get your hands dirty in ‘knowing’ other peoples mindset to a question or a belief, or a religion, but the significance of this is very important in my mind is that how does one minister to someone without ‘knowing’ them and their viewpoints. I am a believer in knowledge of the other christian beliefs to be able to ‘know’ what is out there to see what you are contending with.

I read. I don’t read just the things that I like. I have multiple books on things I need clarification on,new things, subject matters, people of the bible, history, prophecy,spiritual realm, authors,reference material, outside materials such as apocrypha, Pseudepigrapha , and some other inter-testimonial books. I watch sermons,talks,lectures, debates, and bible studies. It is cool just to listen to things outside the box of my beliefs that it strengthens my standing in my faith, but it also challenges it too. I have to ask myself, why do I believe this or that.

One thing that I have been coming across with people that I talk to in various discussions is the ‘concreteness’ of their stand that it is solidified in stone that this stand is and was the final statement that mankind was to believe in. My question to them is ‘if this was so, then it would of been seen as the ‘way’ for “everyone” in a instance. I believe that ‘we’ are getting close to that point but not yet.

I challenge people to do not sit on your tufit, waiting for you to be spoon fed that teaspoon of water, but to dig into it with a fork and a knife, to not only get the juice but the thick meat and vegetables of that hearty stew of God.

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Kingdom of God

The Kingdom of God was ushered in when Jesus arrived in the scene in the New testament as the Savior. This is only the beginning of it.

What does it look like when it is finished?

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What if Adam had…….

Nobody ever talks about the ‘what if’s’ of the bible.

I always seem to look at these to see if I can clarify a passage by looking at the opposite of something and see if it had gone the opposite way, what it would mean or represent from that perspective. I have one that is very fun and exciting to think about. Sometimes, thinking or learning this way can unexpectedly can help you with other texts down the road. This is such one.

What if……Adam and Eve had ate of the ‘Tree of Life’!

Wow, Would of never had thought of that!

This statement has a few facets to it, if we dig deep into it. Let’s start with the first one. Adam and Eve ‘ate’ the fruit of the tree. Now we perceive and have always look at this story as a fleshly act. We ‘bite’ into a peach and we chew it until we swallow the fruit to digest into ourselves, as to make it apart of us. This is a actually a ‘word picture’ of ‘eat’ for us to ‘see’ in a beautiful description of what God sole and only purpose for his creation to be.

I have been ‘preaching’ this scenario to people that I know, and to various other people, to let them start from scratch in their search for God. It is this. For a long time I looked at this scene and said “We were supposed to eat of the Tree of God(Life), although this is true, it’s gets better, It’s not the ‘tree’ that we are supposed to it!, it’s the fruit of the ‘Tree’, Which is ‘all’ of the distinctions of God or all the qualities of God. Which would mean that we would be ‘of’ Him in doing so. His ‘Fruit’ would be ‘Our’ fruit!!

Wow, Just WOW! If only we would of done it then!

Now let’s take this another step forward. Let’s go to the new testament in a passage that will infer this same thing of eating of the Tree of Life. Mark 14: 22 While they were eating, He took some bread, and after a blessing He broke it, and gave it to them, and said, “Take it; this is My body.” This scenario of the Passover meal is the backdrop of this statement by Jesus. The Passover meal is a backdrop, it must be taken in thought to fully understand the statement by Jesus. The passover was the act of God to protect His people from death from the Egyptians curse of their land by God. The key point here is the saving of His people thru the blood of the lamb’s meal. It is then carried forward to the storyline now in mark as Jesus’s body as the ‘lamb’ to be pictured as ‘eating’ or being filled with His ‘fruits’ of His Life.

This reality of melding with Christ is the Holiness that what becomes us to be Holy in God’s eyes. It is what it is portraying in Genesis 2 as eating of the ‘Tree of Life’ would of been to them. This illustrates the Spiritual aspect of Christ as He was giving us to taste of Him. To become as one in Him. To be all in all.

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The day after

I don’t know if I have ever hear any discussion about ‘the day after’ Adam and Eve chose the ‘tree of Knowledge of good and evil’.

What I would like to discuss is the ‘state of mind’ that God was in when this happened to his kingdom and to his people. Yes I know,we don’t or won’t ever know what that is, but we are going to just discuss the possibilities of it.

I believe we must start from the beginning of said story, even tho the event only happened in the third chapter of the story, we must go back to the first and second chapter to ‘see’ what God’s intention was and to ‘how’ he was trying to accomplish it.

God was a creator, a creator of beautiful and majestic things for the universe to shine in the eyes of the Lord. He created a world called earth, a earth that was designed for an image, an image of himself to represent the Holy one. Man was that image. Man was to be the crown jewel of his total creation. It was to be a narrative that was going to go on and on thru fruitfulness of man and creation. This was the blueprint.

Now, if this was the plan, and their was a hiccup in it, what was God’s thought when there was a speed bump in it? Just quit it? Try to get the plan back on track? Alter the storyline, take another tack? Or doesn’t even care anymore?

How we perceive ‘our’ God, is the answer to these questions.

IF you perceive your God as a Loving and caring God of his Creation in all forms. Then you must believe that your God is a Loving God. He is one that cares for His Creation and His intent. He is one that is not wavering or influenced in change. He is firm and stout in his creation and man. It was to be so, no matter what.

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What is our Vocation,Oh Christians?

I find it very relevant for this question to be asked on a daily basis.

We will always have usual answers such as we are to take care of our family,Have a roof over our heads, clothes on our backs, but it is when we have achieved this foundation of our ‘Job’ that we sit in our chairs and just enjoy our success. What makes it really bad in God’s eyes, is when we desire all those accessories to go along with basic needs, because we are not content.

I am afraid that this mindset is precipitated by the world, but also our religions. We are proclaiming our ‘fruitfulness’ in our God that says we are ‘blessed’ to be worshiping our God. I personally cringe when people get these xtra toys, or have traveling fancies and go see the world because they are ‘free’ from their humanity obligations. Is this what we are being taught in ‘our’ church’s?

If so, you wonder why God is not achieving his eternal purpose here on earth!

This pillar of Christ is one of the reasons that I left the institutional church, there was no understanding about what the ‘christian’ was or to be in God’s Kingdom! It is this understanding that is being lost in the model of ‘the body’ that has gotten us in this quagmire of a rut. We are continuing to do the same things over and over in our little ‘meetings’ without actually being ‘in the world’, to shine our light.

I am saddened when I do hear from friends or people that are exploited their gains over the years and throwing their enjoyments from sea to shining sea. I say this because I see it. and I hate it. I have been first hand acknowledgment to some of these things in various church’s that I have been in.

One such example was in a church that had a ‘program’ to give everyone this sunday a $25 gift card to ‘do’ what ever they wanted too do with it. The intention was to be an example of ‘the christian’ to ‘give’ to the needy or to make an influence on someone. Although the concept was right, it was not to be done ‘by’ the church, but thru the church by it’s body of believers. It is this that the individual believer is to ‘see’ the need on its daily journey to find and help. This is where the light is shone, and ‘seen’ by the world. Another issue, the one that I see as a real problem, in the institutional church is that ‘they’ cannot see themselves past their noses. There was quite a few people in the congregation that were hurting for money in various ways. Yet, the ‘church’ failed to ‘see’ it. Their a were a few of us that knew of one hurting family that we pooled our gift cards together and gave them to the family.

My belief is really in the concept of the Corporate Body of God, This after all is God’s intention for his creation, but I am in the belief that it is built by that one rock at a time method, Peter being the first rock next to Jesus Christ,the cornerstone. The IC* has failed in doing this or even explained it in all these centuries, thus it is in the condition that it is. My belief in the individual christian(true believer) can be seen as ‘rock’ in the world to show their ‘light’ to whomever comes by, and be a way to stay in the light. God uses this illustration for a reason with Peter for a reason with it being a shadow of meaning for his Body. It was the individual piece of the puzzle that when we build them all together that it builds the body of Christ. Gods scriptures are amazing in showing shadows and goldmines of wisdom in it.

The first example of our vocation is surprise, surprise given to us in the first two chapters of the bible. God creates His world, with man in it,all the beauty and accessories around it with animals,food, and a garden. His instructions is to keep it going, all of the above, forever and ever.

*Institutional Church

fyi -For reference of my past. I am a PK,Preachers Kid, that has been ‘in’ the church realm for 50 years when I left the building. I have been on both sides of fence of being on boards, and in the pew. so I have seen and heard everything.

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Oh, How shall we live?

This seems to be a question that is always asked from the beginning of the resurrection of Jesus time. What do we do now?

Man has been asking questions, theorizing the who’s and what for’s ever since. I for once believe that there was a reason for this.

It is almost like when something happens to us in our lives, and we ask why did that happen? We will let it ponder in us to ‘blame’,or reason on why it could of happen to us. It is a monumental moment to find what the reason was to the incident to us. It could be days,months,or years before the logical understanding of why ‘it’ happened.

I believe this is what happened to the believers of the ‘way’ and their Messiah. What was the reason for Christ’s dying on a cross, and then rising up out of a grave and coming to life and showing his humanness to his followers.

If there was one question, there was a thousand questions to be asked.

Followers of the ‘Messiah’ were perplexed and bewildered of what to do or say in there Savior’s death and then a amazing resurrection. Why did Jesus die? Why did He arise? Even Jesus’s disciples were in awe to what it meant.

It seems that we are still asking these things to ourselves and to others. Our reasoning of the situation, has baffled us even with the theologians and their exegesis of the scriptures. It is this that we need to bring in the context of the times and what it meant for them.

Rom 12:1

Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship.

Unchecked Copy Box Rom 12:2

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.

These two verses in Romans is a strong hint in what we are to do because of Jesus’s death and resurrection for all believers. This Apoplectic event was a ‘life’ changing moment in the life of mankind. It was/is a life changing alternative that will effect us all.

These verses, if we look close at them, will give us hints of what changed because of Christ’s death and resurrection. These two verses have the influence of the old covenant’s example to be used as a blueprint for the new.

Let’s start first with the middle of the first verse, “to present your bodies a living and Holy sacrifice,”, the ‘concept’ of a sacrifice is one used for the people to give in the old covenant was for their daily forgiveness of their transgressions. The bulls,lambs,goats were the sacrifices that were used then to accomplice this task. Christ was the ‘High Priest’ that gave ‘His’ own sacrifice as one that was the ‘High Priest’ in the Temple, giving a sacrifice for Israel’s whole nation. It is in ‘this’ sacrifice that has led to what our next step is to be. Christ’s example for us to follow as it was in the covenant of old.

This is to be the Holy and ‘acceptable’ vocation for us to follow. This ‘way’ is to be our daily spiritual Worship. It is not anymore to be a one of a human way to ‘sacrifice’ animals for our transgressions, but one of ‘our’ living the life of a ‘Holy’ one, We are now ‘white’,blemish free,Holy, as ‘like’ if we were Holy enough to go into the Holy of Holies. As if maybe we were now, a ‘Priestly’ one to be considered.

Spiritual Service of Worship. This tale statement at the end of verse one is one completing the thought. This small but powerful thought is also a ‘new’ vocation. This is changing of the ways of worship from the bringing the ‘animal sacrifices’, to actually ‘being’ the sacrifice in our ‘living’ as one that is truly ‘Holy’ and righteous, and a representative of Christ.

What this means, is somewhat hard to ‘see’ because we have been stuck in our ways. We are still in our ‘old’ ways of the old covenant. Our ‘worship’ has been hijacked into the believing that our ‘worship’ is still confined to the inside of a temple! Our vocation was and is to be a light among the darkness into the whole world.

Which brings us to the 2nd verse that I believe is the most troubling one that we have failed to utilize in our journey of Christ. “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.” We have not been transformed by the renewing of our minds! It is this that is not completing the union with Christ and his body. Our minds have not been ‘changed’ into that believing and ‘knowing’ God’s eternal purpose of his body. We are not transformed into ‘knowing’ Christ’s body and it’s function. The function of the body of Christ is intertwined together with the Head. It is made up of the same ‘Spirit’ and eternal purpose that God instituted.

The ‘will’ of God is not for the human way but for the Spirit led way of God. This an important thing to remember in our vocation, it is not in our humanly ways but in God’s New Kingdom it is God’s Spirit that drives our Lives.

We are not to put ‘New Wine’ into Old skins for it will only tear the old one apart!(paraphrased)

Is this what we are doing in Christianity?

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It’s all about the “Shadow”

I have spoke on this before, it bears repeating in away that we don’t forget.

God is so crafty in his word. God’s usage of ‘shadows’ or ‘symbolism’ or ‘Types’ or ‘allegory’, is so strung out thru out the old testament, which now that we think about this, should point to us that something different was coming that was different and better for God’s creation. God uses his narrative of history and mankind to bring out a story within a story. He is really a good writer, to do this. We are to read the scriptures as a narrative, but also a ‘shadow narrative’ underneath that tells another story of what God is really telling.

One such example that I will show you is a wow moment, but it itself can multiply with the continuance of the same theme to other areas in the bible. Leviticus, is a book in the old testament that is considered to be one of those books that when you read it, it will make you yawn or just skip over it because it is a description or a building plan for a temple which you are not really interesting in.

But it is actually key to know the ‘rest’ of the scriptures, in will allow you to ‘see’ things that you probably never seen before. One such thing is the story of the building of the temple and the detailed clothing of the High Priest. Studying the clothes on the high priest for the Temple in the old testament can then be translated as a shadow of things of the new covenant. The studying of various other things pertaining to the temple and of the high priest, is a basis for the new and Holy people of the New covenant that God is re-birthing his people.

The things that are on the clothes on the high priest are highly symbolic of the people of Israel. It was a representative of who they were and what they meant to God. God was using this storyline of a earthy temple and the intricacies of what the actual ‘temple’ was. Let’s look at what the earthly temple was to get things going. As like the story of Moses going up to the mountain top to be with God. It was the ‘going up’ to God on top of the mountain that was the picture that He was the God of Creation. It was the communion with God, that was key to this ‘Temple’. It was then that the ‘Temple’ was described in Leviticus in a human way, and a human hand. Although it was a sacred ‘Space’, it was only because it was filled with God, and not man.

It was this aspect of the Holiness that was missing from man that God had reformation for him to make the Holiness in everything of the ‘Temple’ and it’s communion. Mankind was filled with blemish, Man was made of clay,Man was of flesh, Man was without communion.

God had to complete Man, make him Holy, it would be the culmination of God’s Eternal Purpose for making Creation. Jesus, the Messiah, the Savior of all mankind. God’s design was for mankind to be holy as He, He was wanting that communion with his creation and all its Glory.

This is the story of God and his creation.

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Is the Body still under the curse?

What Curse?

The curse is one that starts from the old covenant. The old covenant states from God that –

Gal 3:1For all who are of works of the Law are under a curse; for it is written: “CURSED IS EVERYONE WHO DOES NOT ABIDE BY ALL THE THINGS WRITTEN IN THE BOOK OF THE LAW, TO DO THEM.”.

This verse is loaded. Let’s start with the fact that the curse was instituted by the old testament. But why? It was cursed because the law was insufficient in bringing salvation for the Israelites. The ‘system’ was not to bring saving qualities but to actually bring out the inabilities of man to live up to the law’s demand.

This inability to overcome the law is a reality check for not only God’s people but for all of mankind to realize that their efforts would not conquer the law. The issue was not one of the ‘righteous’ but it was also for all the world to fight.

But for the ‘righteous’ this should be a clue that ‘any’ aspect of the old covenant that is being used is still in the ‘curse’. Concentrating on something that is in the old covenant shields you from being free, and more importantly, blocking you from being ‘in the Spirit’.

My fear is that this is exactly what is happening with the body of Christ in its way of life. The body is stuck in it’s understanding of what it means to ‘live under Grace’. Man cannot serve two masters, the law or God?

To be Holy we must be in whole communion with God, and not sticking our toe into the world of man made religion. If we are to be a Holy Body for God, we must be wholly in his Spirit and wholly in his ways. What does this mean?

First, we must define, or realize what the meaning of the old covenant represents to us. It is the works of mankind to satisfying of the ‘debt’ to God for our in-digression as a people. But it is God that says man cannot fulfill this demand, therefore it is a curse. It is when God came down in the form of his son to fulfill this demand of earthly commandments. It has been finished, it has been finished in that one man(Jesus) slash God fulfilled this demand that the old covenant brought to Israel the people of God. Thus, understanding that man alone would not be able to accomplish the law in its design. It would only be by a Holy and righteous being to do this. Now, the old covenant, the law being fulfilled, a new one would have to be implemented for God’s people and for now the whole world to enjoy and fulfill. A New Covenant, a New way to be in communion with God.

God’s New Kingdom is that which is free from anything of man, for man’s way is tainted in his ways, but now God’s saving Grace has made it an level playing field with the Garden of Eden in sight.

So, what ‘old’ things must christianity leave behind to be in that ‘Holy’ communion with God?

You tell me!

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