It sounds intelligent when someone says the word truths and the deception floats right by until one turns to Christ. It must be clear that the human heart cannot be split into compartments for God and anyone or anything else. There are no degrees to which the mind can be dedicated to God. The idea that the whole heart and being can contain the fulness of the godhead makes little sense until one has the temple/tabernacle and the Son of Man in the same frame. If we had a narrative that establishes our way to the Father as having its root in something present or happening in heaven, we would listen to people who specialize in many truths and countless ways.
God is Father of those who come to Him through his Son.
The sole stole
There are not many versions of Christ’s righteousness: one for people who have their act together to some extent, another for those who are far from the kingdom, and another for whom one has undertake long journeys. The graphic of the priests clothed with salvation (Psalm 132:9, 16) helps to pin the clothing to Messiah. Everyone in the assembly of saints wears a white robe.
One robe is all we get and its laundering is certain
After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could count, from every nation and all tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, and palm branches were in their hands;
Revelation of John 7:9
Believers are capable of soiling this robe and need to wash (this is not being saved again, but rather akin to one washing his or her feet after one has had a bath John 13:10)
Testimony like the following are fabulous and revealing. The first shows that knowing God’s ways is different from knowing him. The others are manifestly problematic as factual experience.
Now therefore, I pray You, if I have found favor in Your sight, let me know Your ways that I may know You, so that I may find favor in Your sight. Consider too, that this nation is Your people.” Exodus 33:13
The law of the Lord is perfect, restoring the soul; The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple. Psalm 19:7
For I have kept the ways of the Lord, And have not wickedly departed from my God. Psalms 18:21
There are so many ways to understand the many paths in the Bible. They all run headlong into our Lord calling himself the Way. Could our Lord be mistaken with this saying? Not likely. What the ways accomplish when compared to Christ the Way, makes the case. Those ways – not a single one – brings life to the dead. Christ’s robe furthermore is not related to the law (precepts, statutes and judgments). The law is not for just people and “way” must take its cue from the person and work of the Son of Man. “Truths” are second class badges. Avoid discussing them. Christ Crucified is the lifegiving truth.
I think of spiritual life as having a single messsge for the human family. I discount any single traditional story as having the locks and keys to the spiritual house. Jews and Gentiles never stood a chance. Christians are also out of the loop as long as the Hebrew text was the means. The same may be said for Muslims and infidels with reference to the Qur’an. Hostility and fear dominates the environment. How much progress can there be in the necessary dialogue between (for example) Jews, Christians and Muslims when Christians are often not reading the text and prefer to blame the media.
“The media” for Muslims and Jews are evidently original language texts. We have every right to read the sacred texts in our vernacular but the languages of the modern world are so impoverished in their depth, that the rendering into scores of versions (translations) deliver only shallow representations of what the ancient writers intended.
Muddy waters and trampled grass
Is it too slight a thing for you that you should feed in the good pasture, that you must tread down with your feet the rest of your pastures? Or that you should drink of the clear waters, that you must foul the rest with your feet?
The dichotomy of diet into vegan and carnivorous illustrates the poverty of many clergy. They prefer to hang their hats on the lowest pins on the hatrack, and they resist the education and rebuke they know awaits them in the certain apprehension of the apostolic writings.
Not my friends, not my people, and no mercy
People who deny the salvation that the cross brings have a lot to explain. First and foremost is the safety of the one saved by God. If such a one is not safe why would anyone trust such a person to go grocery shopping?
I blame the whole lot of gatekeepers who have been lowering the standards of our high calling with our folklore and muddy waters. Leaders are the media. The media has been hijacked by sons of Sceva types. God depends on us to deliver his message in its purest form. Let the ignorant continue to blame God for his timely choice of the writers and the language to bring his most important message to the world.
Wanna get sectarian? Why, after Northern Ireland and South Africa?
There is nothing to say that other believers – say Jew or Muslim – are not in a saving relationship with God. Paul was a hit man for Judaism who upon conversion felt like God had been working on him all along. This is why no human being is to be treated as beyond our love and compassion. You want to treat every human being as deserving whether or not we see the prospect of the Christian becoming a Jew or a Muslim, or vice versa.
You ought to be ashamed
One way to call yourself is to rank the amount time you look forward to spending with the people you know to practice things you do not like or approve. Enough pretending to keep one’s brother. Even in the priorities of many evangelist there is no such thing as hanging with the great unwashed. How far can one be from the pioneer and examples like Paul and Silas!
We have to keep an eye on the other brother. It is spectacularly shameful how loving one’s neighbour not include acceptance and respect. The discrimination allowed in sacred circles is as structural in the secular world. There are shocking parallels to the New Testament world and the 6th century BC. There were people consuming rubbish (Isaiah 28:5-13) and idolizing the works of their hands (Jer. 8:19 and Luke 21:1-6, John 6:31-32)
There is no Shame in Trusting Jesus
What the Bible says about the globally significant alliance – that their unity will not endure – applies to religious groupings. If the major religions were to sign a pact defining spiritual unity and community it would crash while they were signing it. It would crash because there are people who think they see the forest but are looking only at the trees they thought were big and useful. It would crash because extremists are often majoring in minors.
In the environment where people claim victory and a whole lot of honours without any evidence of Christ’s struggle, our other brothers, those who are resisting the gospel call, have nothing to hope for and that gets exacerbated by rare access to apostolic teaching.
3. And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; 4. and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; 5. and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
For in hope we have been saved, but hope that is seen is not hope; for who hopes for what he already sees?
But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it.
Most people never see a living cicada. Almost everyone has heard their loud buzz (song?) on a summer’s day. For many years I imagined that squirrel were succking their teeth or lips. Each year in recent memory, like clockwork, one of these mysterious insects lands on one or two of my windows 18 floors up.
When the creature arrives everbody stares with absolute wonder. I say a respectful hello, wonder if he/she is healthy, hungry, or tired , and I wish there was something I can do. These winged wonders will end their lives in just over a month. In that month they will be loud and eager to mate.
I’ll be out, God willing, to capture their journey in pictures and audio as they climb trees and light and hydro power poles. My God, 6 weeks to live after being underground for 14 years! Diversity and fragility hardly gets any more wonderful. Let the cicada hallel arise.
If one is interested in calculating the number that defines human beings there should be little delay. The dominating powers in the eschaton are two satanic-powered beasts (Revelation 13). Broadly speaking we can lodge those identities with governments and allied agencies. They are egotistical tyrants. They compel people to worship the devil on pain of death.
A simple understanding of the beastly character is failure: in triplicate. Human domains are three: sky, land and sea. Compared to the Lamb with his seven horns, seven eyes, and a two-edged sword in his mouth. The Lamb has authority over the living and the dead. The beast and his enabling power, the devil, are on a murderous rampage. The Lamb continues to demonstrate God’s commitment to give life to the dead.
Here is wisdom: a man’s number
Calculate his number
Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for the number is that of a man; and his number is six hundred and sixty-six.
Revelation of John 13:18
And I saw between the throne (with the four living creatures) and the elders a Lamb standing, as if slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God, sent out into all the earth.
Revelation of John 5:6
Lamb’s Domain – 777
Churches – Lampstands – Stars
In His right hand He held seven stars, and out of His mouth came a sharp two-edged sword; and His face was like the sun shining in its strength.
Revelation of John 1:16
The last shred of human rebellion
The last signs of human badness are on display in this beastly power and have been since the departure of the apostles. Surprisingly the efforts to corner and threaten earth’s population is aided by churches who are obsessed with unconditional aurhority and secular influence. They support the beast’s law and order interests, assuming that secular law and God’s will can be merged into a single regime. Whether the government has Hindu, Zoroastrian, Buddhist, Muslim, or Jewish foundations it will lack one thing. It will not have a supernatural head. A human head that is not divine is simply more of the same, only worse; more corrupt and deceitful.
You make me glad. You gladden me. Those are simple ways to express one’s experience of divine joy. Songwriters are often motivated to make the deepest impression. Short and simple does not always cut it. That explains, partially, how David ends up writing up his joy encounter as a condition, much like the Christian says of his.
He wrote: You gave/put – natatah נתתה – gladness in my heart, but give/put is in the perfect tense, allowing us to say that the writer is affirming that the gladness is still there.
Exceeding gladness: who can define it?
You have put gladness in my heart, More than when their grain and new wine abound.
Are you a spinner or interpreter of the Gospel? Do you expect my biblical truth to be contemporary propaganda or timeless teaching approved by the Anointed God? Did the world change when we started? Where will the world be when we end? The truth can never again be separated from the man Messiah Yeshua.
Without the Nazarene, the Anointed God, our truth-speaking is a lot of clangjng symbols, useless noise, and hot air.