Tag Archives: christian

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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Where do we go from here, oh Christian?

Up til about fifteen years ago I was in the institutional church, I have since taken it myself to drown myself into the living word of God.

I would only recommend this for only the highly ‘Hang on the word of God’ people because if you are one of these people that are only a sunday sound bit people to ‘live’ your life on, it won’t work. I’m sorry.

My revelation came years ago, when I really started to research particular subjects that were brought up in discussions with christian friends. I would first come home and start looking thru bible references, scriptures, commentaries, video’s, audio’s, YouTube subjects video, christian news, secular news, sermons-ones that I didn’t agree with and some that I did, and finally books, alot of books. As you can tell I am exhaustive in my research, now if this isn’t a sign of deep passion for truth and God, I don’t know what is. I am continuing this after 15 yrs + and still as hungry for the ‘WORD’ as ever. Oh Yeah, did I tell you that I am a PK, a Preachers Kid! This means that I have heard 18 yrs of 52 weeks of sermon a year for 18 yrs before I left for college. This is also not including the revivals, conventions, and all the extra special meetings we had for special events. I have heard alot of ‘Christianity’.

My result of all this had led me to a ‘New Picture’ of the Gospel and what it means to Christianity. Now, most of my friends are within the institutional church and are coming from their individualistic theology of the denomination.Although I do have some outside of the church confines as ‘the same’ beliefs’. I am not a pushy ‘evangelist'( I hate even using that word), but I do state my beliefs. As friends we talk about different themes and stories in the bible and there meanings, we will disagree, we will agree on things but we at least know of another view point that is ‘out there’ for us, if we want to, go and research even more about it. You see it is the hungry ones that will do that exact thing. As I have done, I go straight home and start research it in multiple chapters in the bible, books, video,audio and anything else I can get my hands on.

But where does that even get me, or anyone else by doing this? Just think of it this way, ‘at least your not a bump on a log’ for God. Your that frog that is always hopping for God, here, there, everywhere!! LOL

There has to be a conclusion of a ending to the storyline, someplace. And to what end? We are given a clue. Guess what! Guess where it is? Your right, at the end of the storyline, of and by the writer of the story!! God has all the answers, and has all the ways in which we are to do them.

God has (as does my blog title says the answer) the “ETERNAL PURPOSE. LIFE!!

Now if you were a new christian or even a doubter of God, I would always tell you to start at the beginning of God’s story. Genesis 1-2. Then Stop. Take a week or even a month and just think about these two chapters and listen to what it says. Then when you realize that it is God telling you, and all of mankind that God is wanting you to have “LIFE” and to have it abundantly in His Name. Then you can go on and go slowly into the story that prevails in a human controlled world and see what happens to it, all thru today’s headlines.

When you get to the end of the bible, you will come to the last two chapters of the story. It will tell you how God will and has put it back to rights(this is the phraseology that a author of mine puts it, I think it is the best way to explain it.

God tells us and shows us the final picture of his story and how it is going to be. God, His people, His Kingdom.

and this is where we will end up!

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Grass roots

I am going to come at this from a different angle.

What ‘we’ created in the garden of eden was, in reality another world, a world made by us, according to us, and for us. It’s that simple. Our way was going to be best. Designed for us and lived by us.

No matter the cost.

You see this is the world that God-less people have created. It has created some good things that we see as good.(notice that this is exactly what happens when you eat from the “knowledge of good and evil”) And as you look outside your window, you can see all the bad we have created over the last 8,000 yrs(depending your view of earth). This all was our choice back then and even today, we still feel the freedom to make our own laws for ourselves and for others, or for entire countries. We are Free!

This is the world in which we are fighting as christians to change back to God’s ‘Heaven’ structure.

But how is this going to be done. What we learn from Jesus in the New Covenant(I prefer this, over testament) is that change to the New covenant and to the New Kingdom will be created not by the way of the world’s view of getting your way of things either by war,strong arming,or laws but of just the opposite of ways. Using the paradigm, it will be the opposite of everything that you as a person of flesh will think, it will now be thought of as spirit of knowledge and wisdom of God that leads us. Christ is now, He is now in our spirit leading our worship and desires for his kingdom. It is Us and Him, together changing back the realm of His world to the way it was as in the Garden of Eden.

This picture that we are to create in the world in our own little community is the same one that Mary encountered when she was checked on the open tomb of Jesus, and saw no one in there. It was when she turned around to tell someone about his disappearance, thought she was talking to the ‘gardner’ not Jesus. John 20.14-15. This picture is not often seen thru the average christian see’s this as the beginning of a ‘New Kingdom’, Jesus back in the garden, gardening as if He had never left.

God’s desire is to get back to this scenario, it is His creation to ‘see’ this as the finality of the Eternal Purpose. Just as Jesus was gardening as the New Creation had just developed, we too should be gardening in our ‘New Creation’ doing our Vocation as God gave us to do in the first instructions for us in the realm of the garden.

Let us take our vocation as our life long duty to live up to God’s desire. Be His creation. Live for Him,Worship Him as our author and designer. Do not hide in the walls of a building, but be in the fields, streets, neighborhoods, let your ‘light’ shine to the world, your community, to start that little pocket of the world, for all to see, and to expand as others start their own little pockets of this New Kingdom, in which it will someday be all united as one, One New Kingdom, Of God our Savior!!

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Coming to fruition

My journey as I see it is to get to the prescribed destination, as is told to me.

      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,

New American Standard Bible: 1995 update. (1995).

My journey as just a man trying to get from one spot to another, I will take that path that leads me to the final destination.

As a Christian Worshiping my God, the God of Israel,God of the creation I will follow the path that God has laid out for His people. God prescribed a beginning for man in his journey from the very beginning. It was described in detail in the beginning of His Word. Genesis 1-2 was blueprint for us to start with, it was the middle that has us all messed up. But we are concerned with the destination that God has laid out for us. It is in Revelation 21-22. In Rev. 21 1-3 It describes the destination of our journey with Him. God’s plan was simple yet hard to do for man. He failed miserably on trying to rule the world on his own by doing it his way.

It is when we realize that God’s design for us was instituted for us way back in Genesis with all the instructions for us to follow and live by in God’s paradigm. But God gives us a second chance by realizing that He will show us the exact same picture in the future for us to attain. it is in these verses of Revelation 21 1-3. With the highlight in verse 3 when John says ” 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.”

The highlighted verse is the destination that man should be striving for in his daily walk. It is in this walk that we have to make a startling revelation about the body of Christ. We are to do this in the ‘Heavenly’,’Godly’,’Christlike’,’Holy’, way of God’s final destination. This is not about our earthly way of doing things but of ‘in Christ’ way. We will be the Bride of Christ, She will be spotless and blameless, She will be the Bride to the Bridegroom. She will be perfect in every way. She will be ready for Him, to be taken for the Great Wedding Feast. This ‘picture’ is one that is brought out throughout the scriptures. God’s bride will be in waiting to be of the New Jerusalem.

Let’s step back for a moment, and notice some things that maybe you didn’t notice the correlations that have led to this final destination. Have you noticed that when the ‘city’ of ‘Jerusalem’ is mentioned, that this was the location of the Jewish people and their God. God’s presence was stationed in the city inside a Temple that was considered Holy, and only the High Priest was allowed in to that room. So it was also used as a reference to where you should ‘go’ to be with God. (maybe this is still being used to think that we have to go someplace to ‘be’ with God?) God was limited in this paradigm.

God wanted a different paradigm, one that would be accessible to all, and forever. He designed us so that not only would we be images of God,but we would be complete in ‘Christ’ being in us! This is the finished product of God for man. This is the picture we see in Genesis 1-2, Revelation 21-22.

Until we ‘see’ what God is directing us to the Bride of Christ in the days of His coming for us to be the body of God, not the building where we believe He is,but understand that He is ‘in us’ the Bride! This is the destination, the finished product of God for man and his creation.

God is waiting for us outside in His world, while we are in a building waiting for him to come.

Walking and talking in the City of God!

P.S. There is no Temple in Genesis 1-2 or Revelation 21-22. I wonder why that is?

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How many times have you read the bible?

I really hate this question.

By saying you read something, what does that tell you have accomplished? That you have read?

By saying that you have a read a book, is like saying you have seen a movie. But did you understand it?

This is also why I have hated in the institutional church the annual awareness of getting people to read the bible in a year, or two years. So what! Ask them what they read for a ten page report on why God came to earth in the form of Jesus, or why was Jerusalem the focus of the Israelites in the old testament, or what did it mean that the curtain was rent in the Holy of Hollies? And see if they could hand in at least one page. Most people when reading anything they just read, couldn’t tell you what they read. Reading the bible is not to be contrasted to be a medal of honor for the year, or for every year as a prize.

The Pharisee’s were reprimanded by Jesus for so called supposed to be the ‘experts’ of the scriptures, but yet Jesus asked them for meaning to them and their response to Him was ‘We don’t know’ (paraphrased by doug). Their job was to study and to make meaning to the scriptures that God had given them and to follow that meaning. Even the disciples were baffled in Jesus’s words to them in their daily walk with them. It even was even worse when Jesus started to talk in parables to them, their minds where in a state of ‘Whhhhhhat’?

It is with this thought that as christians and our community that we need to get together and talk about the word of God, and really ‘see’ God’s storyline for his people. It is not the ’20 minute snippit’ that we could get once a week that will even get us to ‘know’ God in our lives. He is so much more than this.

This might be the problem with the said ‘church’ that just keeps doing the same thing over and over and thinks that we will get a different result.(We know what this is called,right) We have to be vigilant in our ‘seeing’ what we are reading in the scriptures. It isn’t just black and white. It is what God meant in his spoken words that just point to Him.

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Where do we go from here?

Is this a wake up call for us? Should we change? If this effects everyone in the world, should I change? Alot of new and different questions to think about in our life.

The biggest thing that I see and perceive with society, and even christians is that we all have problems with the idea of rest. We don’t know what to do with ourselves when we don’t have work, or we don’t have a schedule of things to do in our normal life. There is no indication that we cannot just rest just for the sake of rest.

Using this as a marker, we need to see why the need exists, why we feel the need to do. It has been ingrained in us for centuries, thru many reasons, sometimes being no fault of ours. There is this need to just be busy, to work, to play, to go and not to be still.

Rest is talked about in the scriptures multiple times, in fact it is mentioned almost 300 times in the NASB. The bulk of the time the ‘rest’ is mentioned in the old testament, which should tell us that emphasize was there with the Israelites from early on in their journey with God. But why? Why would or should we be concerned with the notion of ‘rest’.

Let me digress here for a moment, I have always had a few questions about groups of people or individual’s that didn’t look back at their heritage or their history to see if their were problems that they had created or were not going along with what God had deigned them to do, and why they didn’t see this. This is one of those moments, and questions I have for the Israelite’s.

If God had designed a world for us and the only thing that we were to do, was to rest with God, why would we do anything else?

God’s design for us, or for a better word to use is our ‘vocation’ in this world was to be an ‘image’ of God , which leads us to vision us as image in the God’s world. Ironically, this is exactly the picture we see later with God’s, chosen people, the Jewish people, the Israelite’s in their Temple model, that God set up for them to be ‘near’ him. Just one dot, in the whole world, as opposed to being with his people in all of the world.

And we still can’t see this in our world today!

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The bible’s storyline is……..

This seems to be an issue with the bible reading people. The readers are well aware of all the multiple stories that in the scriptures but there is no understanding of the overall theme or as I say “Eternal Purpose” of God.

I have always claimed you have to start at the beginning with everything. It is not anything different with the scriptures. Genesis 1-2 is crucial to knowing the details of ‘heaven and earth’ as God creation. It is also important that we look past the words of the scriptures and see the ‘forest’,in this case it would be a very large forest! lol.

The ‘forest’ that we have to look at is ‘what’ is ‘heaven’ and what is ‘earth’? What do they represent? and why?

If we first look at ‘heaven’, we must realize that God is ‘of’ it and resides in this realm. It is holy, righteous and Godly. The creator of all is in everything, because He is everything. This ‘heaven’ is the paradigm of all existence being God indwelt. God is God. This realm is the existence of God in all it’s worth.

This realm of ‘heaven’ is what God desires for his creation, he gave them life in many ways to experience on his creation of ‘earth’. It was to be two spheres together overlapping each other so as to become one. (This is latter said in the scriptures with adam and eve, with the same kind of life giving result).

Earth being God’s creation for mankind to be his home, was ‘life’ to the extreme. It was what no one could imagine, let alone describe with a million words. God was the creator,designer and best of all, the host of the wonderful garden. This earth was home.

God’s design was incorporating two realms together, heaven and earth. God and man. Creator and created. Designer and designee. Man and woman. It is illustrated many ways throughout the scriptures to tell and show us that this is the example of completeness. Two halves, together made whole.

It is now that the one, man has seen to split with the heavens and God, to be free from the creator, and to be an independent creation and not be associated with God, its creation. The realms have now separated and mankind is running on its own. God, now disappointed, has not left his creation but is keeping his eye on them to bring them back into the realm of God and man.

God does this when he ‘brings out'(connotation of the exile) abraham of Ur to bring his people out of this miry clay back to ‘heaven’. God’s eternal purpose is still to have the creator and creation in what is supposed to be a intertwined life of God and man.

This storyline is ‘not used in for the most christianity’s dogma but the one of ‘for all of mankind has sinned, and must confess their individual sins and come to the Lord’. We must relook at this dogma, with the intent of finding proof that this was the message to the Israelites as God was dealing with them. Was this the message in the new testament? Jesus’s message was bold and to the point, that God’s kingdom was at hand, and that it will come to its fullness in time.

We must as christianity relook at the scriptures at to what the ‘eternal purpose’ is in God’s word!

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are we still confused?

I have distanced myself from the whole business of how christianity,christians are to be pigeon hole into a political realm, for the past 12 years, the only thing that I do do, is laugh at it.

This will go along my same train of thought that I have had in my spiritual journey over the same time frame is to realize that christians and christianity are ‘stuck’ in the thinking that God works in mankind’s realm to fit His realm. His ‘kingdom’ is not our ‘kingdom’. Hear lies the problem, mankind has failed in it’s attempt to be a ‘good’ example of his ‘being in charge’ of the world.

What christianity is trying to do is be ‘Christlike’ thru a ‘christian nation’, this is not what it teaches us in the scriptures, We are to be ‘Christlike’ as a ‘people’ for all the ‘nations.

We fail to use all the pieces that are given to use in the scriptures to fit the whole storyline of God’s eternal purpose. God and Jesus have always been apart of the Heavenly realm, the Kingdom of God. It stands to reason that this kingdom is to be where God is wanting us to get back too. Our desire is to begin to first ‘see’ this Heavenly Kingdom as for what it is, and to then walk and talk in the ‘new light’ that is to be in the ‘new age’.

Our failure to ‘see’ that this was what God was doing with Israel, for all the world to see, and be the difference of a Godly people that all would be coming to Him in Holy Praise!

This is the example that we should still use as the ‘image’ of our God in His temple(world), to all of mankind.

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Is it time?

Do we need to go back in time to see if there is anything that has or is tainting our belief’s? Are we on the right track, is christianity being authentic thru our journey of God’s design?

Pagan influence

God’s separate people,different,Holy,uninfluenced. Have we been changed into something that we were not designed to be, is it because of being conformed to our surroundings, our friends, our own ways,to pagan ideas? Is this what God said us to be?

We are to be different!

Let’s get to maybe a issue that maybe is affecting our path to God and his eternal purpose. Our pagan ways! I will tackle a big one first, then to some others.

This is, I believe is the most decisive and the most relevant one in the christian community that has steered us in the wrong direction. It is the ‘church building’!

To tackle this one, we must go back to the old testament and to see what the ‘building’ actually stood for. Who was it for, what to do there, and why.

I’m afraid that we actually have to go back to genesis 1 to get the whole picture, but this is good in a alot of ways. We might even see somethings that we have never seen before.

God designed the whole universe! Genesis chapter 1 God put all the participants in the picture of his creation. Exactly in the right place, at the right time, the right objects, the right people to portray his creation. It was perfect! It was actually God putting himself into his own creation, his desires, his wants, his world was surrounding himself with himself. This is key to the way that we understand God’s creation. He was designing his essence, his being into a outward brilliance of himself. After all, it was to be where he laid his head. (Mat 8.20) To walk among his creation(Gen 3.8)

So if we can see this actually in our mind of what was going on, we can see that God created a place for him and his creation to be, to walk, to sleep together in a world together.

Let me interject here that a fact needs major clarification to understand, this world was designed,made and designed for man(mankind), This fact is key to the scriptures in so many ways, using the hebrew language as who or what God’s ‘people’ were is in the understanding who ‘Adam’ was, Mankind. All of eternity of his kind, this was or never was supposed to individualize God’s creation.

Now, let’s fast forward to many years later after his creation has went a separate way from his creator, but the creator is still connected to the creation and cares for it, and that his desire is to be apart of him, but it won’t be in the same way as before, man has not the same love for it’s creator. So God has instituted his partial connection to man by although not fully as before, but in someway still connected to him he institutes a connection by creating a spot on his creation where God is still God of his creation, The Holy of Hollies. This place is just not anything or anywhere, it is special to his people. But it is with conditions, it will have to be with sacrifices to his people, it will be a ritually rough life of sacrificing to God for the life that they chose to go. It will be them coming to him in a remorseful way of knowing that they were wrong.

This is describing the Temple in Jerusalem. It was the ‘only place God was in all his creation’! Wow, how the storyline changed. From all of creation to just little room 20 cubits by 20 cubits by 20 cubits, a perfect cube. That’s not big at all! Where they went once a year.

This continues today with the jewish world today, the protestants have copied this scenerio for the most part by confining God to a building with a room that is usually bigger(some places believe bigger is better) It is where God is, he lives in there, this is when and where we feel him, see him, and hear him. This is the allusion that we see when compared to the days of the ages. We have and are not giving God Glory for bringing us back to his Glory of His Creation.

By God’s giving over his son Jesus the Messiah(Lord)(King) that he may be the example of the image of God that his creation was meant to be, he is now a NEW CREATION, not like the one before, a new,different one, a holy one, One that was created in the beginning to be God’s walking mate, talking mate, and living mate. just walking in a garden.

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It’s a Journey

Oh, you can say that again!

Growing up in ‘church’ environment of doing or saying what everyone was claiming to be as a christian, was just normal. I guess it was the right of passage of being in the ‘church’ , you just continue on with what has been going on for generations, except with some minor modifications. But that is all. Same old things,said over and over,done over and over. But Why?

Until I finally asked myself ‘Why’ this and ‘Why’ that, what is the ‘church’ trying to do, what is christianity trying to be? How did we get here as the building of Christ believers?

It’s always good to start at the point of where you have been to ‘know’ where you are now. So the logical point of starting from is to look at how things have evolved in christianity, the good, bad, and yes there’s the ugly. Following christian beginnings is a rough and messy picture to cipher, but it does get us to the point of seeing of where we interrupted our beginnings to see if we got off on a good foot.

Christian beginnings were very thinly disguised from the start of the first century, there was no defining markers of ‘identity’ as was let’s say the Judaism sect was. Paul,Peter,James, and John were of different minds and of boundary markers of this ‘new way’. What was being emphasized was the ‘title’ that someone had given you, who you ate with, or what you believed in from your God.

This, to say the least is a picture of breaking glass of the real picture of what God was designing the perfect picture. This broad synopsis of what God’s people, God’s Temple, and who God was, never really comes into focus until around the 1000 ad when Constantine set up shop for the christians in the buildings of choice and with any interference from anyone. This model then collides with Peter’s model a few hundred years down the road that just creates the ‘ugly’ as we have talked about.

My overall synopsis of where we have gotten confused and more so, just plain, not ‘seeing’ or ‘hearing’ what God thru the scriptures is telling us. It is getting past the words of scripture and ‘seeing’ what God is doing in this narrative collection of books and letters. This mistake has got to get us to re-look at the whole narrative of the bible in what the whole picture tells us.

Studying Paul of the N.T. has shed some light on the subject that we are on, that we might start our focus on. Paul was given the ‘spotlight’ for a reason in his walk to Damascus. It was a revelation of why Messiah was put into the scriptures, It was to bring back to Him the World of his creation. His after the fact of Jesus walk on the earth that he was proclaiming to make the world right to Him. His conquering of all the things that were making the world a captive of evil were now gone that the world may now be His.

Paul’s insight of the Jewish Old Covenant of what then God was doing with ‘a people'(His) was being carried over to the New Covenant but with the bindings off of his people that would make the real difference! The two covenants are really one, with the latter being freedom from man’s identity to God’s identity, where it was in the beginning.

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