Sunday, April 29, 2007

# 198: The life of Grandeur

The majority of the last 197 posts have mostly told what isn’t preached in most conventional Christian churches, which this blog candidly makes known. That is what has been coined: Religion’s Crime Against God. This section will deviate from that format, and will attempt to tell of the many positive aspects of genuine Christianity; and there are many.

The majority of humanity struggles and strains to find lasting meaning in this uncertain life. Many do this without even knowing it. I would say the top six contenders which promise to bring meaning to life are security, happiness, wealth, love, power, and respect, etc.

And it seems understandable why these are the top choices, because there is some sort of human logic behind the pursuit of each and every one of them. Only thing, if one avoids all the ensuing failures in their attempt to reach their goal and finally arrive, then what—live off the fat of the land? At that point, the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow was most likely a mirage. As many are finding out, all that effort and this is my only reward: the "golden" years, laced with fool's gold (aches, pains, pills and finally a "loving" nursing home). This life of leisure is likened to being on a vacation cruise ship with no final destination. That abundance of leisure is like going around in circles, which quickly becomes blasé, while reluctantly waiting for our friendly undertaker.

For many years, I personally was one of those misguided wanderers seeking for a meaningful reason for this life. Then, somehow—though I don’t know how—I realized there had to be more to life than the aforementioned scenarios.

At a low point in my life, realizing things and relationships didn’t produce the wonderful life they were acclaimed to be, I started dabbling in religion. To my disappointment, I found much hypocrisy and superficiality. But still there were wonderful promises in the New Testament which got me to continue in a search for what God offered. I am not a mediocre person, settling for second best; therefore, I threw myself head-over-heels into an attempt to fulfill what was required to receive the good things which were promised in Scripture.

Nothing great occurred overnight that was noteworthy in my life except a few relapses into the meaningless things of the world. But with persistence and a need to feel valuable and loved, I started and continued to take the gospel message seriously.

I never in my wildest dreams ever thought I would be where I am at this time. When I got serious with God, He got serious with me. Some of His commands seemed absurd; nevertheless, I, with my childlike faith, made/make every effort to obey.

The most noticeable changes in my life were the desire for material things and attitudes that seemed to disappear as they were replaced with spiritual treasures. All I can say is that this part of my life seemed like one big miracle. And for the last two years, since I got involved with this Internet blog, I saw the biggest spiritual gains. Those gains made me into a completely new person, though physically I am basically the same person. Enough of what happened to me. Let me give some details of what Jesus Christ can do for everyone who clicked onto this post, especially the regular subscribers.

One of the most unbelievable aspects of Christianity, which becomes a reality through our faith (belief in what God said through His instruction book), is that which makes a person feel like a king: The creator of our gigantic universe actually desires to invite you and me in as partners to help Him by showing and telling the unbelieving world what He is like as He displays Himself through you and me via His Son Jesus Christ.

The magnitude of our job as a representative of Almighty God actually blows my mind. What a horrendous responsibility God, the powerful Almighty God, places in front of us–by the way, this responsibility is what inspired me to start, Religion’s Crime Against God and the impetus that keeps it going. To convert these simple words into reality is where the miracle comes in. The miracle is that our faith, which allows us to actually believe all Jesus Christ taught, is aimed at you and me. We are the recipients of that challenge, which is just one crucial part of Christianity.

Here is another imperative—actually, the most important—portion of living the Christian life: the unfailing love God has for every one of His chosen. That agape love considers every Christian as if she/he were the only person in the world—get more details on that concept by checking out posts # 82, 83, and 84, "Your Own Personal God."

Through faith in God, when a person starts to experience that personal love God has, that will be the turning point of one’s life. Believe it or not, the love God will have for you is identical to the love He had/has for His only Son Jesus Christ. With that heart knowledge behind our belts, we can start to find out how to love him in return (reciprocating love). The main way to display our love for God is to learn what he desires from us via the New Testament, and then start to comply by obedience.

I can personally testify that His love for us is the most satisfying love in existence. It makes all the other loves we receive seem as if they lost their glow. That doesn’t mean we won’t still love them and receive their love for us; it only put them in proper prospective. Without experiencing that love, if even to a minute degree, our marriage to Jesus Christ—figuratively speaking—is like living in the same house with a spouse where love is lopsided: One person is loving while the other is cold. There can be no joy for either partner in that type of situation. In fact, there will be no lasting connection between the two parties.

I can assuredly say that this love connection is the missing link for millions of sincere, good and honest people who claim to be Christians. It could be rightfully said that this reciprocating love is an enigma for all who are not actually experiencing, with their lives, the life of Jesus Christ. I could just hear some saying, "Those are lofty words of love, but in reality it doesn’t exist." And I could understand why they feel that way.

This is the reason: When a young child is told they will love and be loved by the opposite gender when they grow up, they might say to themselves, “I don’t want to hurt my mother’s feelings, but I think she is telling me a fairy tale." In the same way, many who are not experiencing God’s love don’t believe this Godly love exists; again they say, "And even if it did exist, it can’t be experienced." That is a satanic lie.

The thing about being unable to love and be loved by God is crippling; that divine love is the basis (framework) for all else in God’s plan of Salvation to function properly. Take that mutual love away and what might be left is morals, if even that. Again, that is not only sad but devastating.

There are several reasons why God’s agape love does not come to fruition in some. I can’t say this unequivocally, but most likely it is because of the abundance of available stuff in this materialistic world, which appears to satisfy us and thus make us feel loved. In fact, I am surprised genuine Christianity has survived as well as it has in our modern pampered and coddled culture, especially with all the niceties which are vying for our love and attention.

Another reason why many secretly believe God’s love is no more than seductive words, a ploy which is seemingly impossible to attain other than in word, is because our lives are so filled with busy emptiness. We don’t have time or desire to squeeze/cultivate God’s love into our lives.

And still, God and His love are waiting for all who desire to live life to the fullest. God’s love makes life a continual holiday, even with the rejection and hatred from those on the other side of the fence. Remember this one thing: We were meant to be gods, created in His image, and it is God’s grace which is facilitated by His love that makes us into His holy phenomena (children of God).

The culmination of our Faith is being with God, His Son Jesus Christ, and His holy family in heaven for all eternity. How many of us are actually looking forward to being in Heaven? Is heaven real, or just a place we may talk about? The better we have it on earth, and the more we enjoy it here, the less our minds are occupied with heaven. The tougher we have it on earth, the sooner we desire to leave this world. Could that be the reason the select poor, meaning only those who believe, love and obey Christ’s teaching, are valued by God more than those who have it easy? For me personally, there is very little if anything this world offers that interests me or brings me joy. That may be the main reason I am anxious to leave. What I will miss is advancing the cause of Jesus Christ. Hopefully what is written in this blog will continue after my departure.

To make heaven more than just a beautiful word, we need to have a realistic vision that it is immeasurably better—to say the least—than anything we could ever experience on this earth. By not dwelling on the wonders of heaven, it may lose its reality to the point where we still desire to go to heaven, but not just yet. How many of us are in that situation? Let us not forget, going to heaven is the main reason for all that is said and done in the Christian life.

I am certain most of us have seemingly legitimate reasons for not wanting to die to meet the Lord at this time. But this hesitation or putting-off of the readiness to go at this/any time seems to say, "We still fear death." The reason I don’t fear death is because that event means to be with the Lord in heaven–of course in a sleeping state. To explain sleep at death, click on # 102: "Conscious State at Death?" But it is better for me to live a little longer to continue to display my boldness in telling it like it is: exposing religion’s crime against God and the crime against all the millions who are caught in the seductive and enticing grip/trap of conventional religion. Hopefully my death won’t be accidental or from some sickness or disease, but hopefully it will come by the hands of the religious hierarchy for my unconventional though Biblical stand for Christ. The reason I say that is because as this blog continues to spread, it will start to dig into the pockets of the clergy, and they won’t like that. As you can tell, God and I have high hopes for this blog.

Simply put, heaven is wonderful because God lives there, and its joy is waiting for all of us. That is the primary reason for our Christian hope. I pray we don’t think of heaven as a pie-in-the-sky pipedream, but as continually and extremely joyfully, to say the least. For more information and insights on heaven, see post # 150: "For Heaven’s Sake ! Life at its Best."

Hopefully for dedicated Christians, fear of death is a thing of the distant past. Heaven is something we should earnestly look forward to. When a Christian leaves this world, that is a time for all who love us to celebrate, even though it is our love ones who may/will suffer because of our absence. I am certain that for those who have young children, death at this time is not the best thing, so they can continue to bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. Also, leaving a wonderful wife and mother would be a disaster. Is it selfish to say, but I am thankful I am not in that position.

Another reason I desire to leave this world and be in heaven is because I am an extremely empathetic person. I actually experience the pain of many who are hurting because of the war in Iraq and Afghanistan, along with much of the other suffering which is going on in this world. It literally tears me apart. I don’t know why God had to make me this way. Only those who are like me will understand. I write this paragraph with many tears.

Another wonderful aspect in our anticipation of heaven, which all genuine Christianity will inherit, is this: all the strife, jealously, greed, hatred, selfishness and a dozen other negative worldly attitudes disappear; not overnight, but as our heavenly treasures start to accumulate, our worldly treasures are deflated/devalued. To me, this is one of the best entities (frosting on the cake), literally a spiritual windfall which God blesses us with.

Just one more, although there are many more holy benefits given to Christians who are heaven-bound than are being told in this post. Non-Christians, including myself, are always concerned how other people see us. We want to look just right so people won’t think badly about us. Why should we care what others think of us as to how we dress, the type of car we drive, the neighborhood we live in, and many other things, as if we live just to impress others? Well, that desire to impress others again will slowly vanish. We will then have the freedom of not having to live just to arouse the approval of others.

Another of the wonders of belonging to Jesus Christ is this: You have discovered and now possess the most valuable commodity in the universe: knowing, loving, and actually being loved by God. Any and all other possessions—material or otherwise—a person has or desires to acquire in their lifetime cannot compare with the Salvation of one’s soul. Isn’t that wonderful? In fact, there are no words in our human language descriptive enough to tell the full extent of what a genuine Christian possesses. This free gift we are endowed with by God’s grace is so stupendous that we cannot contain it. And therefore we are compelled, by our love for God and neighbor, to pass it on; it is our holy privilege. This eternal gift is so superb, it cannot be contained.

Just to be certain we actually have the aforementioned gift, there is a little one-sentence quiz to confirm it. If anyone does not feel it necessary to pass it on, or believes it is not their place to pass it on, most likely what we have is not worth passing on. Please, please, if you forget all else that is written herein, please do not forget this principle, which is God-inspired logic; it is of primary importance.

Finally, although this post is mainly directed at the abominations (not telling the whole truth) perpetrated by a majority of Christian religions per se, the positive attributes of the gospel’s blessings far outweigh the criticism. My fervent prayer is that many more of those deceived "christians" will have their eyes opened, and thus enjoy heaven with all God’s saints (us).

Sunday, April 22, 2007

# 197: If, etc.

I apologize for not being online yesterday, April 21; our server crashed. Thanks for your patience.

This post will leave most casual Christians in shock and awe. What it will do is separate the make-believe from the genuine. The vast majority of people who claim to be Christians have been acclimated to a “nice-and-easy-does-it” church culture which says, "You are Christians; God bless you." They imply this message regardless of the type of lives parishioners engage in.

I will not give much commentary, but will let the New Testament speak “in your face” for itself. What will indisputably be exhibited is that genuine Christianity (the real thing) according to the New Testament is a conditional relationship from beginning to end. The word that will give the main thrust in describing how conditional our being Christians is, is the word “IF.”

First, I want to joyfully say that allowing Almighty God through His Spirit to live in and through a person is by all means the best and most complete life that can be lived. Being on God’s side, and thus God being on our side, makes a person know and feel so great (being positive about all areas of life because of God’s personal love for us), and therefore we, are becoming exactly what we were meant to be: children of God, or better yet, clones-of-Christ-in-the-making; or even better yet, gods in human form. There is no lifestyle which is better, more joyful, or more fulfilling than being one with Christ. This type of life is waiting for every person who makes Jesus Christ their Lord (boss) and Savior. This does not mean there won’t be hatred and possible persecution from institutional churches toward people like myself. As the Apostle Paul said, ". . . sorrowful, yet always rejoicing . . ." Also, he says, "in all our troubles my joy knows no bounds."

Although Christ’s Salvation is freely given to us by God’s grace, meaning we don’t have to—or can’t—work for it, we still have an obligation of obedience to all that is required in the New Testament. This obedience shows Christ we are His disciples: That is what I am going to clearly show in a verbatim manner through New Testament verses. Some of these verses will seem overwhelming, and thus invoke a negative reaction. And because of that negative response, those who truly want to be absolutely certain they are on the right path to eternity will start to implement them, slowly but surely. It won’t be easy and it may not be quick, especially if one is accustomed to the comfortable message churches in general preach.

Without actively engaging in this active part of the Christian life, one’s religion will be boring and joyless like politics: something you don’t discuss in public. That may be a good indication that one’s Christianity is make-believe. I understand that many will not agree since it is extremely difficult for anyone to change when they are already comfy-cozy with their so-so religion. For your sake and your sake only, desperately attempt to refute with New Testament Scripture the impact these upcoming verses should have on the lives of all real Christians. I am not talking about make-believe Christians. Most likely, they will disregard this section as the words of a disgruntled religious fruitcake and just continue their personal status quo. If you can’t discredit these verses, do one of three things: Stick your head in the sand and pretend you never read them; forget about Christianity all together; or pray that God will help you to adhere to what He demands from all who call themselves Christians.

John 14:21. "Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me."

1st Corinthians 16:22. "If anyone does not love the Lord–a curse be on him. Come, O Lord!"

Hebrews 3:14. "We have come to share in Christ if we hold firmly till the end the confidence we had at first."

Luke 9:23. "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me." The cross Jesus is talking about, is not the ornamental cross hung around the neck, but as the cross implied at that time, something of disgrace and hardship.

Colossians 1:22-23. "But now he has reconciled you . . . if you continue in your faith, established and firm, not moved from the hope held out in the gospel."

John 8:31-32. "If you hold on to MY TEACHING, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free." [emphasis added].

1st Timothy 2:15. "But women will be saved through childbirth, if they continue in faith, love and holiness with propriety."

Hebrews 12:14. ". . . without holiness no one will see the Lord."

Galatians 6:9-10. "Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore as we have the opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of God."

1st John 2:24. "See that what you have heard from the beginning remains in you. If it does, you also will remain in the Son and in the Father."

John 15:14. "You are my friends if you do what I command."

Matthew 24:10-13. "At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. [Trinity Broadcasting Network]. Because of the increase of wickedness the love of most will grow cold, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved."

2nd Corinthians 5:17. "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone the new has come." Do you and I live like the world does, or are we living to promote the cause of Jesus Christ? Are we really new creations, or are we fooling ourselves and playing make-believe?

Matthew 10:37. "Anyone who loves his father and mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves his son and daughter more than me is not worth of me . . ." Of course, some will say, "Who is worthy of him? No one." Our love and obedience to God allows Jesus Christ to count us worthy.

Hebrews 3:6. "And we are his house, if we hold on to our courage and hope of which we boast."

John 15:5. "If a man remains in me and I in him he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing." This verse is telling us we have a sure way we can know for certain if we are one of His chosen, by the amount of fruit we are producing. No fruit, no Christ.

1st Corinthians 15:2. "By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain." The “Word” Christ preached is in the New Testament, but most likely you won’t hear “God’s Word” in its entirety from a pulpit. The clergy doesn’t want to lose you; you are a good source of income for them.

2nd Timothy 3:5. "Having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them." Therefore, they only tell you exactly what you desire to hear without you even being aware of it.

2nd Timothy 4:3. ". . . they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear." It is a form of religious entertainment disguised as worship, and if their ratings fall they will be looking for another job—maybe digging ditches. This paragraph sums up religion’s crime against God.

Galatians 5:6. "The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love." We express our love by producing much fruit, good works, and good deeds, which are all synonymous; they all are expressions of love.

Ephesians 4:27. ". . . but must work doing something useful with his own hands, that he may have something to share with those in need."

John15:7-8. "If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples."

1st Peter 2:21. "To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his foot steps."

Galatians 6:9. "Let us not become weary of doing good, for at the proper time we will receive a harvest if we do not give up."

Ephesians 5:6-7. "Let no one deceive you with empty words, [those in the clergy who are money- and number-hungry], for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient."

James 1:12. "Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him."

Philippians 2:3-5. "Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus."

1st Corinthians 15:2. "By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain."

2nd Peter 1:10. "Therefore, my brothers, be all the more eager to make your calling and election sure. For if you do these things, you will never fall, and you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ."

John 12:25. "The man who loves his life will lose it, while the man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life."

James 5:5. "You have lived in luxury and self-indulgence. You have fattened yourselves in the day of slaughter."

Revelations 2:11. "He who overcomes will not be hurt at all by the second death."

Revelations 2:26. "To him that overcomes and does my will to the end, I will give authority over the nations."

The word “overcome” is mentioned another five times in chapters 2 and 3 in the book of Revelation. They all basically tell the same thing. Some might ask, "Overcome what?" Answer: Luke 10:19. "Overcome all the power of the enemy." John 16:33. "But take heart, I have overcome the world." Romans 12:21. "Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good." There are also another dozen or so verses which give a similar description of the word “overcome.”

Philippians 3:17-19. "Join with others in following my example, brothers, and take note of those who live according to the pattern we gave you. For, I have often told you and now say again with tears, many live as enemies of the cross of Christ [I wonder who the modern enemies of Christ are.] Their destiny is destruction, their God is their stomach, [sounds like Americans], and their glory is in their shame. Their mind is on earthly things."

Luke 21:19. "By standing firm you will save yourselves."

John 15:10. ‘If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love."

John 14:15. "If you love me, you will obey my commands."

Hebrews 6:11. "We want each of you to show this same diligence to the very end, in order to make your hope sure."

James 2:19. "You believe there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder."

Hebrews 5:9. ". . . he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him."

James 4:4. "Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God."

1st Peter 1:22. "Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth . . ." Sounds like obedience is a germane part of the Christian life.

Romans 8:9. "And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ."

How does a person know with certainty she/he possesses the Spirit of Jesus Christ? Answer: No matter how much one is doing in the work of advancing the gospel, she/he cannot seem to do enough of the work for Christ Jesus in the 24 hours allotted to all of us. In other words, Jesus is the main thrust in all we say or do. This principle excludes no one. Did anyone ever hear such words spoken from the pulpit? This paragraph could summarize a majority of what is presented in the New Testament. To dismiss this fundamental truth as unnecessary is a crime against God and self.

There are many more similar verses if you are not overwhelmed already; any more would overwhelm even the holy angels.

Finally, what large denomination is guiltier than most others? (I mean those who don’t believe Christianity is conditional, or put another way, those who believe "Once saved, always saved." Those are the ones who claim "God is not an Indian-giver.") Shocking answer: The Baptists. And who has been the greatest/most popular preacher of all times, who is still a practicing Baptist? You guessed it: Pastor Billy Graham. They believe that once a person accepts Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, especially at an altar call, their Salvation is confirmed for life. That means that those who accept Christ as Savior and then do no more (change their lives), remain baby Christians; even if they do nothing else for Christ the rest of their lives, they are saved. This type of belief is appalling to me, but popular with those who are naive concerning what is taught in Holy Scripture.

There is one verse, and only one, that implies what they believe, and Scripture will discredit it. The verse is 1st Corinthians 3:1. "Brothers, I could not address you as spiritual but as worldly–mere infants in Christ. I gave you milk, not solid food, for you were not yet ready for it. Indeed, you are still not ready."

Repeating what Paul says, "I cannot address you as spiritual but as worldly . . ." The only people who are not spiritual are those who do not possess the Spirit of Christ (The Holy Spirit). Now listen to this verse: Romans 8:9. "And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ." Amen.

I truly believe everyone who possesses the Spirit of Christ understands this message, that our connection with Jesus Christ is conditional and actively desires to live accordingly.

To get more information on this vital subject, click on post # 152: "Billy Graham: Man of God?" I pray everyone reading this post will be blessed greatly by God for seeking more complete knowledge of God’s Truth.

Friday, April 20, 2007

# 196: Response to a Comment by Jay

I decided to publish this large comment from Jay with my response on the main section since it would be incongruent on the comment section.

Hi jc

Your comment "Here is the punch line: The ONLY reason for God to create a physical universe was so that throughout ALL ETERNITY, He would continue to reproduce Himself through willing, intelligent, physical beings." What scripture did you read to draw you to this conclusion ? I have read that He has created us to live lives filled with good works that He has prepared for us to do. Eph 2:10. That everything has been created through him and for him. Col 1:16. He created us to praise Him. Ps 102:18. He has created us for His Glory. Isa 43:7

Al I have to thank you because when you come up with opinions like this one , it causes me to jump into the scriptures and see why comments like this jump out at me. So I need to prove them right or wrong. I couldn’t find one to prove your point. So help me out please. God does not keeps reproducing himself through us. There is only one God. It sounds like you are saying we become Gods. (I know you don’t but that’s how it sounds)

Also will you tell me how you determine what parts of the bible you choose to believe and what parts are just a simpler way of explaining things for the simple man. I’m talking about how you think the world and man came about.(evolution) You talk about faith in the last part of this post. I like what it says in Hebrews 11;3 By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God's command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible. I like taking the things out of the bible with a simple childlike faith. God said it. I believe it. You may think you can win people to Christ by science and logic but the scriptures say it is by faith. Read the rest Hebrew 11. It list a few simple men that I will enjoy spending some time with.

Luke 6:20 or Mat5:3 "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven." The question remains, why is a person who is poor in spirit, instead of rich in spirit, blessed by God? Answer: a person becomes poor in spirit when their desire and need for God is unceasing. God makes His people rich by making their needs, wants and desires few. (you jumped from spiritually poor to worldly poor)

The first part is right but the second part is misleading. I think if we have the same desires that God has he is not going to make those wants and desires few. He will give these wants with abundance. If they are the same wants as His. This scripture is telling me we have to empty ourselves of any worth. Being poor, not worthy, not able to please God, without accepting the sacrifice Christ did for us. There is nothing we can do on are own efforts, it his divine power that gives us the power to obey his commands and his holy word that gives us his desires. Any other way we are just fooling ourselves.

Last point, you make a lot of true statements (about the church) but you mix a lot thing in your post that are not true.( my opinion ) I say this not to make you angry but because you post this for others to read and you are looking for comments. I hope you are not just looking for people who only agree with you. We all need checks now and then.

My opinion is that God can and sometime he makes us rich enough (worldly) when he wants to. 2 Co 9:11. So who are we to pass judgment. Jam 2:3 "Suppose you give special attention to the man wearing fine clothes and say to him, "Please have a seat." But you say to the poor man, "Stand over there," or "Sit on the floor at my feet." This scripture can go both ways . We are to treat all people equally.

Rich or poor. Gods blessing. Simple Jay

Posted by Jay to Religion's Crime Against God at 10:01 PM

4/20/2007: Response to Jay’s comment

Jay, thanks much for your engaging comments. I praise and thank my God for you and other Christians like you. You really made my day. I am surprised I don’t receive more comments like yours from the several thousand bloggers who subscribe to this blog. And I agree, “Iron sharpens iron.” Even though every true believer is perfect in God’s sight (we are given Christ’s perfection) by grace, it does not mean we may not inadvertently be in error at times; and I am no exception. That is why this blog needs to be checked by people like you, when I write off-the-wall stuff; even though when I write that way, I truly believe I use Divine logic.

The same is true of Holy Scripture, which has many inconsistencies and outright mistakes. The more I study the Bible, the more I become aware of the mistakes. Most of the time I make little or no fuss about them because I know those writers, especially of the New Testament, were human like me, and mistakes are inevitable. Still, the Holy Bible is the absolute best source of what God and His Son are like and what They expect from us, (life at it best).

As to your first comment for the existence of our universe . . . this is where Divine logic comes into play. According to our latest astronomical figures, our Milky Way galaxy is comprised of approximately 200 billion stars (other solar systems). The universe, God’s universe, has about 50 billion galaxies. What does scripture say, since you want Scriptural proof? Ephesians 4:10. "He who descended is the one who ascended higher than all the heaven, in order to FILL the universe." Our God is a logical God. Do you think He created the gigantic, infinite universe just for the heck of it? How can an eternal God be content with numbers or space? (I am referring to the number of earthlings, etc. that will be with Him). I am aware we mortals are unaware of what it means to live in eternity, but eternity and infinity are synonymous. Therefore, how can God, who lives in infinity, be content with a set number of fellow gods?

I am again thankful to God for your jumping into Scripture when you believe I am in error. I wish more bloggers would do the same. If nothing else, my "errors" encourage Bible reading.

Concerning the statement that all God’s people will also be gods: It couldn’t be any other way. That is not taking anything away from God, since He will always be Almighty. Listen to Scripture: John 10:35-36. "Jesus answered them, ‘Is it not written in your law, “I have said you are gods”? If he called them “gods” to whom the word of God came–and Scripture cannot be broken. . . . Why then do you accuse me of blasphemy because I said, “I am God’s Son”?’” Does Jesus call us brothers while on earth? Will we be any less when with Him in heaven? Yes, we will; be gods—with a lower- case “g”—along with Him. Also remember, we were created in God’s image. A female dog begets puppies; as they mature, they later will also be dogs, and so on. Every living entity, begets like kind. Did I make my point?

Concerning evolution, as I mentioned, in eternity, time and space do not exist. Science confirms that there is logic in God’s Word. When I mention eternity, time is not in the equation. Yes, it takes child-like faith to believe the gospel. But it takes naiveté to believe that the universe is only 6,000 years old when there is unequivocal, empirical, scientific evidence as to the age of the earth and the universe.

There are millions of intelligent, educated people who would now be Christians if the Christian community would believe that science is a reliable source of knowledge. If these millions have to revert to a belief held before modern science existed—as it does in its present-day form—to become Christians, as is evident, they would reject all the rest of Scripture where science is not necessary. Just because many of them are eggheads (super intelligent), they should not be excluded from believing in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, just because, as I already said, some hard-headed Christian clergy believe the Bible is without error. All I did was to expand the time frame of the first chapter of Genesis to 13- and-a-half billion years. That is one of the greatest revelations I receive from God’s Spirit. And I will never let that go. I don’t like to mention revelations because that seems to put me above others, although I believe that because I am less than others, this is why I receive them.

As to the poor in spirit being blessed, that has been a mystery in the Christian community since who knows when. I will not tell you where I receive it; you have to guess.

You are correct; I did jump from the spiritual to the physical, and I should have been more descriptive.

When I said that God makes His people rich by making their needs few, what I meant is this: Once anyone starts to enjoy all the spiritual riches given to them by God’s grace, all the material things that previously brought happiness, security, etc. will, without us even trying, become of little value. I have less materials things now than the vast majority of Americans have, and I guarantee I am ten times more content now than when I was wealthy. You know how God and I feel about wealth in the hands of His chosen, so I won’t go there except to say that the comfort and security that wealth gives become the biggest competitors to God, and when it comes to wealth versus God as to who is the most important/valuable, guess who always wins? Check out Luke 16:13. "No servant can serve two masters. Either he will hate one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money."

You said, "There is nothing we can do on our own effort, it is his divine power that gives us the power to obey his commands and his holy word that gives us his desire." That is partially correct, but basically incorrect. This is what I mean: With all the power God has, He cannot—I should say, “does not”—violate our free will. We must make EVERY EFFORT by our own free will to do exactly what God commands. God does not tamper with our freedom of choice. The reason I say this is that if someone is waiting for God to inspire him/her, to do His will, that time will never come, because that inspiration has always been there. Remember, God has always desired the whole world to do His will, so everyone can be saved, but only a few will listen to Him.

Concerning what I write about the organized church, you said it "is not true," and I can understand why you said that. You must, one way or another, be/have been part of it. There are not enough descriptive words in the English language for me to tell what damage that church—I do not mean all of them—has done to America and the world. I will say no more than that. I think you know what I mean.

Concerning the idea that I want comments in which readers agree with me,. I don’t need those types of comments just to make me feel as if God is accomplishing something worthy through this blog. I need and desire comments like yours, since they invoke a detailed response. Of all the loyal readers of this blog, I am surprised I don’t receive more comments. So I ask everyone to send me comments or questions of any sort, even those that have no apparent answers.

And your last few words, concerning God’s people having wealth:. I will say this: When anyone attempts to justify wealth of any sort, that tells God that something substantial is missing in one’s spiritual life.


Saturday, April 14, 2007

# 195: The Exact Opposite

Believe it or not, the value system of most people in this world is exactly opposite of what the New Testament teaches. Scripture teaches (paraphrased) that we become spiritually wealthy by eliminating, to the greatest degree possible, worldly needs, desires and wants. Said another way: The less material things a person needs, the wealthier that person is/becomes. The more things of this world a person desires, the poorer that person is/becomes.

Luke 5:3. "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven." The question remains, why is a person who is poor in spirit, instead of rich in spirit, blessed by God? Answer: A person becomes poor in spirit when their desire and need for God is unceasing.

God makes His people rich by making their needs, wants and desires few.

Material wealth makes a person poor because most rich people are never satisfied and always want just a little more (greed). In God’s sight, those unsatisfied, well-to-do people are lacking inward wealth while wallowing in their gold and silver.

The opposite is true in the spiritual realm. Real wealth materializes when a person is completely satisfied with his/her connection to Jesus Christ, while still desiring to strengthen that bond with the One he/she is living for. True spiritual wealth is in reality, poverty, since no one ever gets enough of that wonderful stuff.

As long as a person has material wealth, their need for God will not materialize other than in a superficial way, which will only be an add-on to their present life. It is for this simple reason: What can God give a rich person who already literally has everything his/her heart desires (living the good life)?

What’s being said is an attempt to make more understandable what the Word of God teaches. The only thing, this principle of spiritual wealth, poverty, desires and need must be experienced, if even to a small degree, to make any logic since it is contrary to human values. Mark 4:18-19. "Still others . . . hear the word; but the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth and the desires for other things . . .” Luke 8:14 adds, “and pleasures”—“. . . come in and choke the word, making it unfruitful.” Luke adds, “and do not mature."

The poorer a person is inwardly, the more accolades that person desires for outward accomplishments and possessions. The richer a person is inwardly—spiritual wealth—the less he/she desires the wonderful goodies this world offers. It is clear why God does not speak highly of the wealthy, because they are inwardly empty of the His Spirit and are trying to make up for that feeling of inadequacy with worldly things and attitudes.

Here is a verse we all know, but most don’t give it much credence. Matthew 19:23-24. "Then Jesus said to his disciples, ‘I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of God.’"

James 2:5. "Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and inherit the kingdom he has promised those who love him?" I believe the majority, if not all, of the poor in the first century, at least those mentioned in the gospels, were deserving of being helped. But that may not be true in the 21st c entury.

There are at the least15 verses in the New Testament teaching us to love (give to) the poor, and that they are the blessed ones. But don’t be fooled. Do not give indiscriminately to every type of poor, but only to deserving ones. What I mean is to use caution if you give to those who are living evil lives: the lazy, those on drugs or alcohol, etc.; your giving will allow them to propagate their evil. And if you do give to them, make sure you PERSONALLY see what your love gift is going to buy.

Today, there are several different categories of poor people: 1) The poor which belong to the Lord because of their belief, love and obedience to Christ. Let them be the first on your list to love (help). 2) The poor who don’t belong to the Lord but are poor because of some handicap or other impediments. These people have some chance of becoming disciples of Christ. Help them. 3) Those that are just plain lazy and won’t work, and depend on handouts from whoever. They have little or no chance of faith in God. Help these poor by giving them the “help wanted” ads. 4) Then there are the homeless. Some are homeless through no fault of their own. They deserve mercy and help from God and from us, especially those in a family situation with children. They truly need our help and love. They have a good chance of giving their lives to Christ. 5) Then there are the homeless winos, panhandlers, etc. Whatever they receive from us will most likely go to further their addictions. Chances are extremely slim for their conversion. Be diligent in giving to them.

When God speaks mercifully concerning the poor in Scripture, as just mentioned, He doesn’t want us to throw our pearls before swine; we must be as wise as serpents and as harmless as doves, so as not to waste God’s resources. Even in the worst-case scenario, a few have some chance of going God’s way, more so than the wealthy. Then, of course, many of these well-to-do people already believe they are Christians since they belong to some ear-tickling church. These people are set in their ways and there is little or no hope for them.

Most of what is being said in this post is contrary to the ubiquitous opinion of the world, and much of mainstream Christianity. And anyone that goes against popular opinion becomes an enemy and a radical in the world’s eyes, especially to those who claim to be Christians.

What ticks me off more than most things is that the wealthy are venerated in most Christian churches, exactly the ones that Jesus continually bad-mouthed. Go into the parking lots of most mega-churches and what you will find is that luxury (expensive) cars are in the majority. These well-off people are the ones that give 10% of their earnings every week—they think they can win God's favor with money. Acts 8:20. "Peter answered: ‘May your money perish with you, because you think you can buy the gift of God with money!’" Heck, if I didn’t know better and loved money—actually, not the money, but the security it gives and the power it has to make life easy and pleasant—I would desire to have that well-to-do crowd attend my church also. I thank God I don’t have or desire one. And what do you think happens to the average people? They also would want to be prosperous and then be respected and admired by others. What that type of Christianity has brought into existence is a silent Christian mantra: Wealth and prosperity are the new standards for holiness.

Therefore, anyone can vividly see why this form of false Christianity is so popular. They incorporate the best of what the world offers with the gospel of Jesus Christ. They say, "God wants His people to have the best." That is exactly what Christ warns will happen in the last days. And yes, God does want the very best for us. And what is “the best” God desires for His people? The answer is short and sweet: the life of His Son, Jesus Christ.

“Wealth” is a relative word to each variant culture. A person who has only their basic needs in today’s society may be as rich, if not richer, than a wealthy person 2,000 years ago.

And finally, what will make or break us in our Christian quest is our desires, needs and wants. Put another way, what are we asking for? What are we seeking? What door are we knocking on? Let’s spend some time in answering these questions. Our destiny may depend on it. And if we are seeking the true way of Christ’s Salvation, for certain, it will be the exact opposite of how the people of this world live, regardless of whether they claim to be Christians or not. This is a hard teaching, and yet the New Testament confirms it over and over again. Therefore, don’t let church leaders, etc. tell you otherwise. This prosperity movement of wanting more (greed) has undermined—and will continue to undermine—the true gospel of Jesus Christ; His gospel turns the world’s values upside down. The problem is, many who don’t know better, since they don’t examine the Scripture, will fall for this pleasant, feel-good, happy-talk, all’s-well "gospel." Exposing this ungodly couch-potato "christianity," while telling what Scripture teaches, is the sole purpose of "Religion’s Crime Against God."

Much of the language I use in an attempt to describe this travesty perpetrated by the religious hierarchy is hard, unpleasant and intimidating. And yet my language is congenial in comparison to the degree of the crime, since there are few words in the English language—at least to my knowledge—descriptive enough to display the deadly damage the church per se has done to tarnish the image of Jesus Christ. The two adjectives my Christ-like candor forces me to use are “nefarious” and “pernicious.” If you don’t know their definitions, check the dictionary.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

# 194: Are You and I One of God’s Chosen?

To God Almighty, nothing in all creation happens by chance. In the beginning—if there was a beginning—while God was conceiving in His mind what the world would be like, He watched what was happening to all inanimate materials according to the laws of physics He established. As these elements started to take shape, according to God’s evolutionary plan, He continued to gaze as the gigantic, infinite universe took shape. He saw that it would be good and all would work just as He planned.

Now looking at the big picture: God’s purpose for this physical universe was to create an infinite number of celestial bodies which would have a congenial environment for intelligent physical life to exist. As God looked into the infinite future, He said that it would work just as He desires/d.

Here is the punch line: The ONLY reason for God to create a physical universe was so that throughout ALL ETERNITY, He would continue to reproduce Himself through willing, intelligent, physical beings. Almighty God pushed his creative button (spoke the Word) as it were, and it all started to take shape.

Our planet is no doubt one of an infinite number of worlds that had, have, or will eventually have, intelligent life. My attention will now be centered on planet earth, the only world we are intimately acquainted with. According to the latest astronomical figures, our planet is approximately four-and-a-half-billion earth years old, and the universe, as far as we can probe at this time, is at least thirteen-billion or so earth years old.

The Old Testament does not demonize the scientific community for contradicting what God told Moses to write about the six-day creation period. But with the Godly insight from one of His chosen, this author agrees with Moses, but only after greatly expanding the creative Biblical time frame. Listen to what Peter said in 2nd Peter 3:8. "But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: with the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day." The reason Peter is saying this is because some were saying that Jesus is slow in His return. Then Peter makes the point that Jesus is no hurry, since time does not exist in eternity where Deity makes His home. Since that fact is undisputable, the thousand years Peter mentioned could have been a million or a billion years, except that the word “billion” is not mentioned in the entire Bible. Therefore, when it comes to measuring the work of God, it is impossible to evaluate time by means of a realm of timeless eternity. For that reason, I am expanding the first four chapters of Genesis into thirteen-billion years. Actually, the first chapter by itself could have accomplished the same time frame. (When done reading this post, click on # 143: "Creation, Evolution and Intelligent Design.") It puts holy logic behind God’s creation process.

If there was no unequivocal hard-core evidence of the approximate age of the earth and the universe—but there is—it would be understandable why many denominations staunchly stick to the belief that the universe is only about 6,000 years old. If they were to concede to the scientific evidence, they could not claim the Bible as the inerrant Word of God.

Some unbelievers who would like to become Christians just can’t accept a belief of that sort; therefore, they reject the remainder of the Bible, thinking other parts of Scripture are also in error. And there are. Nonbelievers would think, "Who would want to believe a Book that has errors in it?” Those human errors actually give the Bible more credence; it was written by men for men/women, so not everything was word- perfect. Remember, it was written through the flawed memories of holy though fallible men, even though it was inspired by God (although not verbatim). Click on # 110: "Contradictions and Uncertainties."

Here is the wonderful part of all creation: Before the physical universe came into being, God knew exactly how every person on earth and elsewhere would live their lives, as He saw Himself tweaking (inspiring) His chosen to help them fulfill their holy desires, so that their belief and behavior would conform to His will; however, God never inspires anyone against their free will.

1st Peter 1:1. "To God’s elect, strangers in the world . . . who have been CHOSEN according to the FOREKNOWLEDGE of God the Father, by the sanctifying work of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ . . ." [emphasis added].

God inspires all His chosen to help them live as they desire by having mercy on them. Yet, to fulfill His eternal purpose, God also hardens those He wants to harden, meaning those who are not His chosen. Listen to what Scripture says: Romans 9:17-18. "For Scripture says to Pharaoh: ‘I [God] raised you up for this very purpose, that I might display my power to you and that my name might be displayed to all the earth.’ Therefore God has mercy on whom he wants to have mercy, and he hardens whom he wants to harden." This hardening God did to pharaoh, I can understand. The reason for the hardening of others, at this time is a mystery to me.

There is one possible exception. By this time, George W. Bush knows that his war in Iraq is a disastrous mistake. Yet, he insists on denying that fact. Anyone in their right mind would have admitted their mistake and taken a different course of action; regardless of the course of action, the consequences for that region will be horrendous. Could it be that God is hardening Bush’s heart—the most powerful man on earth—for FALSELY CLAIMING TO BE a born-again Christian? God may be letting the world know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that Bush is NOT one of His chosen. Even those who are not Christians must believe he is a madman’s madman, and all for his pride of wanting to leave an honorable image of himself for his legacy. Actually, I believe Bush's approval rating would be near zero if it wasn’t for those 40 million fake evangelicals, along with their disgraceful former leader, Ted Haggard, who put Bush into office and still support him.

If God is behind hardening this demonic fool’s heart, the reason could be that this heart-break of a war is a prelude to Armageddon. The reason I say that is because that region is such a volatile tinderbox, it would be a miracle if something disastrous doesn’t happen (nuclear warfare between Jews, Arabs and soon Persians from Iran) as an outcome of the insatiable hatred generated by all concerned, which Bush’s war rekindled and exacerbated. It is a crying shame for all Americans to have such an evil man as the leader of our country. When I get writing about Bush, I get carried away. In fact, I could write a book about him and all the follies he has engaged in for the past six years.

Back to the subject on hand . . . therefore, since God knew beforehand how everyone would live, He will choose only those whom He knew, before the fact and through their own free will, that they would live exactly as He desires. It sounds like divine cheating, but it isn’t. To God, that will mean all uncertainties and errors will be eliminated as to who will qualify to be in His presence.

That means many who are not born yet, if Christ dallies, are His chosen. That means some who are living ungodly lives at this time are his chosen, because He knows they will repent of all their wrongdoing, believe in Christ’s work of Salvation, love God and neighbor, and obey what Jesus Christ teaches. That means there are some who at this time claim to be Christians, who will not be one of His chosen because for whatever reason, they did not continue to live up to (endure to the end) what the New Testament demands of all who claim to be His chosen.

Without dancing around this question, how will you and I know with certainty that we are one of God’s chosen? Without making any excuses; excuses are not valid in God’s sight. This is the answer:

1) To start with, we first must be aware of a GENUINE NEED for an unfailing purpose in this life, something this world does not and cannot offer—a life which will be much better than we are now experiencing, better in this life and in the hereafter. That controlling and dominating purpose will give rise to trust and hope in the One that promises this better (the best) life.

That is where childlike faith comes into play. The reason childlike faith is needed is because only a small child or a fool would entrust their entire life to the hands of an invisible God, at least as the world sees us. That makes disciples of Christ into holy and blessed "fools" for God, while on this earth. In 1st Corinthians 4:10, the apostle Paul writes: "We are fools for Christ, but you are so wise in Christ."

2) Then, a genuine wholehearted repentance before God and Christ of all our past wrongdoings. Without that repentance, sin and disobedience would persist.

3) We must BELIEVE with our whole being that Jesus Christ did everything necessary for our Salvation by the perfect life He lived, the wicked death he died, and by the power of His resurrection.

4) Our faith, hope and trust in God must be the catalyst which gives us the desire to love God with all our faculties and to love our neighbor as ourselves. This requires much more than beautiful words. It requires action, which brings us to the next step.

5) To prove our love for God and man/woman, we are to be obedient to all that is required in the New Testament. This is where the situation becomes dicey. There are many verses that display the importance of obedience as a result of our faith, and at the same time, confirmation of our love, but never as a necessary add-on for salvation. I will give just three verses to substantiate that fact, although there are many more verses elsewhere in the New Testament and in this blog.

John 15:24. "He who does not love me will not obey my teaching."

Acts 26:20. "I preached that they should repent and turn to God and prove their repentance by their deeds."

John 14:15. "If you love me you will obey what I command."

After conversion, when anyone faithfully follows the above requirements to the end, they can be absolutely certain they have been chosen by God to spend eternity with Him. Isn’t that wonderful?

Hebrews 6:11. "We want each of you to show this same diligence to the very end, in order to make your hope SURE.”

2nd Peter 1:10. "Therefore, my brothers, be all the more eager to make your calling and election SURE. For if you do these things, you will never fall." [emphasis added].

The next four paragraphs are on Biblical literacy.

I am certain where many may fail is when it comes to obedience. Most do not know what is commanded in Scripture, especially in the New Testament, to live as required for acceptance into God’s kingdom. The tragedy is that most churches don’t teach that part of the New Testament to any great degree. The only way to be certain we are being obedient to all Biblical commands, so as to confirm to ourselves we are one of God’s chosen, is to read and reread the Bible as I have mentioned over and over. Another alternative is to read and reread this blog. I did not spare the mention of even one of those requirements. By the way, Christ’s commands are not ambiguous. I know many parts of the Bible are boring and some are difficult, if not impossible, to understand. But as time passes, many of these hard-to-understand verses will shed light as to their true meaning.

As for the book of Revelation, it is mostly symbolic, displaying God’s wrath on this evil world; it is extremely scary. It might be best for beginners to read the book of Revelation once and then not dwell on it too much. The reason I say that is when the Bible was being correlated by the early fathers in the first several centuries, a large portion of the existing church leaders of that time thought it would be best if Revelation was excluded from the holy canon.

One aspect of Christianity that I want to simplify, which will take much of the controversy out of understanding the New Testament, is this: We are taught we must be obedient to Christ’s commands, continue to bear good fruit, do good works, produce good deeds, etc. All these are spurred on because of our faith in Jesus Christ and as evidence of our love for God and for our neighbor (the Christian life). We don’t do all these good works to improve our Salvation, as that would be impossible, but we do them because we are saved—or better yet, being saved. The reason I use both terms is because both “saved” and “being saved” are used synonymously in the New Testament.

If the Bible was as easy to understand as portions of this blog make it, we would have little or no need for pastors to give us an expensive sermon every week. The clergy silently makes us believe we can’t understand what the Bible is teaching; therefore, only a learned person can understand the complete gospel message. That is absolute holy bull. If an uneducated nobody like myself can understand what is being taught by God through His Bible, I am certain most anyone can; then, with persistence and determination, any/all "nobodies" can eventually circumvent the weekly sermon by becoming a student of the Bible (an educated disciple of Christ), which should be the goal of every genuine Christian.

Just because some may not need the sermon does not mean they won’t need to get together with those of like beliefs; that is a must. We need good old-fashioned fellowship via the House Church, the type we had before electronic communication came in vogue. For more information on the House Church, click on # 96: The House Church.