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!!