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Lying with the Dogs

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“Outside are the dogs and the sorcerers and the fornicators and the murderers and the idolaters and everyone who loves and practices a lie.”

Consider this: what exactly is a lie, and how do you “practice” one?  As with many things, the answer depends on what perspective you are coming from.  From a natural perspective, a lie is essentially a false statement being presented as true.  From a spiritual perspective, a lie is deeper than mere words – a lie is a path or way in which things without life are considered or presented as alive or life-giving. The Bible refers to these dead things in many different terms, including  darkness, carnality, the night, the flesh, or the old man (referring to Adam). So then, within the New Covenant, “liars” are those who stubbornly continue to value, walk in and promote the (often religious) way of the flesh/old nature, despite the fact that God put it away, crucified and nullified it once and for all in Christ.   Just like those who tell lies in the “natural” sense, spiritual liars also present something false (the way of the flesh/Adam/natural man) as true (divine, life-giving, desirable).  

This isn’t merely important, it’s necessary to grasp if you want to follow the way of Christ in establishing the Kingdom of God and honoring the Father. The biggest reason the world and the church are in the shape they’re in is that believers have either been unable to recognize that most of what they have considered “spiritual” is nothing but dead flesh, and/or been unwilling to repent and follow the way of the Spirit (which includes sacrifice, love and laying down one’s life for the sake of others). However, if you merely want to get to heaven in the end, then you’re unlikely to ever repent and truly change the way you perceive and believe.

To follow the spirit into such a life of sacrificial love, I believe the key is that one must first be enabled to “taste and see” the goodness of the Father’s creation and Kingdom, which cannot be accessed or affected by anything physical.  Each of us can dwell in this Kingdom of love and peace and righteousness and joy NOW, before it becomes fully manifested in the physical realm. This is the “freedom” Jesus proclaimed he came to give mankind.  With one’s heart and life rooted in the Spirit,  one can let go of their hold and fascination with the natural world, which is struggling and dying due to it’s basis of self-preservation and fear.

Consider James 3:12-15 (MLV), with my comments in blue: “My brethren, a fig tree is not able to produce olives or a vine figs, are they? Thus no spring is able to produce both salty and sweet water (the spirit will not, and in fact cannot produce the works of the flesh (things like greed, anger, judgment and criticism, sexual immorality, jealousy, etc).  Who is wise and knowledgeable among you? Let him show out of his good conduct his works in meekness of wisdom (the truly wise and spiritual are those who do good from the heart, as evidenced by a natural humility and meekness rather than from a selfish motive such as as approval from men, blessings from God, or punishment-avoidance). But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your heart, do not boast and lie against the truth (if you walk in jealousy and with selfish motives (which are of the flesh), yet present yourself as spiritually mature, you are living and practicing a lie and blaspheming the way of Christ). This wisdom (labeling flesh as spirit) is not a wisdom that comes down from above (spiritual, heavenly, divine in origin), but is earthly, sensual, demonic (natural, fleshly, religious, doomed to destruction).” 

I am not perfect and am not free from the influence of flesh.  I am also not condemning anyone, keeping in mind there is no condemnation in Christ.  However, we know the flesh has already been condemned once and for all, therefore we must learn to recognize it and reject it in favor of the spirit.  If we align with and pursue what has been condemned, we will find ourselves “outside” the Kingdom, as the verse at the top says, and marked for destruction (though this does not mean eternal torture in hell).

I believe that as one becomes increasingly familiar with the presence/voice of God within, entirely separate from fear, selfishness, or preconceived ideas or religious doctrines, it becomes easier to discern between what is spirit and what is flesh. Hebrews actually says the Word of God is able to divide between the two. Learn to hear our Father, the voice of love and peace and truth and reconciliation. Let Him show you that all is well in His kingdom, that His Kingdom is still at hand, and be free to walk in it now, showing others it’s beauty and inviting them in.

1. Revelation 22:15 MLV

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Posted by on July 16, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

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Once More

Haggai 2

“In the seventh month, on the twenty-first of the month, the word of the Lord came by Haggai the prophet, saying: 2 “Speak now to Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah (ministry toward man), and to Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest (ministry toward God), and to the remnant of the people (the elect), saying: 3 ‘Who is left among you who saw this temple in its former glory (the brief period when the church truly walked in the Spirit)?  And how do you see it now? In comparison with it, is this not in your eyes as nothing?  (The current state of God’s people corporately is pitiful by comparison). 4 Yet now be strong, Zerubbabel,’ says the Lord; ‘and be strong, Joshua, son of Jehozadak, the high priest; and be strong, all you people of the land,’ says the Lord, ‘and work; for I am with you,’ says the Lord of hosts. (The least to the greatest must work as God instructed, building up the body of Christ using the materials (wisdom, power, truth) gathered from the mountains (the spiritual realm in Christ), refusing to be discouraged in any way).  5 ‘According to the word that I covenanted with you (the covenant of election, inheritance and circumcision which God made with Abraham and his seed in Genesis 17.  Circumcision = being separated from flesh, that is, everything which does not originate with God Himself.  The New Testament scriptures actually discuss the true meaning of circumcision quite a bit – see Romans 2:28-29, among others) when you came out of Egypt (bondage of religion and law), so My Spirit remains among you; do not fear!’  (Do not fear, but remember that the new covenant which Christ established has brought us from estrangement to adoption, Adam to Christ, the kingdom of darkness to light, from from the flesh to the spirit).

6 “For thus says the Lord of hosts: ‘Once more (it is a little while) (a future event) I will shake heaven and earth, the sea and dry land; 7(ASV) and I will shake all nations; and the precious things of all nations shall come (the treasures of all the earth will come to the kingdom of God: see Psalm 50:12, Isaiah 60:5, 61:6, Rev. 21:26); and I will fill this house with glory, saith Jehovah of hosts. (Hebrews 12:26 quotes this verse as a prophecy of the coming eternal, spiritual kingdom of God, with Christ as the cornerstone of its temple, which is composed of the corporate body of Christ on earth and based on spiritual offerings, sacrifices, and worship).  8 ‘The silver is Mine, and the gold is Mine,’ says the Lord of hosts (all the riches of the world belong to God). 9 ‘The glory of this latter temple shall be greater than the former,’ says the Lord of hosts. ‘And in this place I will give peace,’ says the Lord of hosts(Rom. 14:17: “the kingdom of God is…righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.”)

10 On the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month, in the second year of Darius, the word of the Lord came by Haggai the prophet, saying, 11 “Thus says the Lord of hosts: ‘Now, ask the priests concerning the law, saying, 12 “If one carries holy meat in the fold of his garment, and with the edge he touches bread or stew, wine or oil, or any food, will it become holy?”’”  Then the priests answered and said, “No.”  (External contact can’t impart holiness). 13 And Haggai said, “If one who is unclean because of a dead body touches any of these, will it be unclean?”  So the priests answered and said, “It shall be unclean.”  (Contact with death brings uncleanness.  In the new covenant, “death” = absence of God’s life/spirit, and “unclean” = spiritual blindness).   14 Then Haggai answered and said, “‘So is this people, and so is this nation before Me,’ says the Lord, ‘and so is every work of their hands; and what they offer there is unclean.  (Though unaware of it, God’s people as a whole have become blind and carnal, and God has no pleasure in or desire for the things they offer Him. While the new covenant and promises in Christ are secured, they can still be missed by individuals and even entire generations).

15 ‘And now, carefully consider from this day forward: from before stone was laid upon stone in the temple of the Lord— 16 since those days, when one came to a heap of twenty ephahs, there were but ten; when one came to the wine vat to draw out fifty baths from the press, there were but twenty. 17 I struck you with blight and mildew and hail in all the labors of your hands; yet you did not turn to Me,’ says the Lord. 18 ‘Consider now from this day forward, from the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month, from the day that the foundation of the Lord’s temple was laid—consider it: 19 Is the seed still in the barn? As yet the vine, the fig tree, the pomegranate, and the olive tree have not yielded fruit. But from this day I will bless you.’”  (Prior to Christ, there was no spiritual abundance, and little truth and wisdom. But from the day Christ, the foundation, was “laid” by making atonement on the cross, God has been blessing to His people with all spiritual blessings, though wine (grace), fruit (maturity), and oil (anointing of the spirit) will not immediately abound).

20 And again the word of the Lord came to Haggai on the twenty-fourth day of the month, saying, 21 “Speak to Zerubbabel, governor of Judah, saying:

‘I will shake heaven and earth (The coming Kingdom of God will be primarily a heavenly kingdom, not a physical one).
22 I will overthrow the throne of kingdoms;
I will destroy the strength of the Gentile kingdoms.
I will overthrow the chariots
And those who ride in them;
The horses and their riders shall come down,
Every one by the sword of his brother. (In the proper season, God is going to establish His kingdom on earth in fullness, and all evil, wickedness, and death will be destroyed).

23 ‘In that day,’ says the Lord of hosts, ‘I will take you, Zerubbabel My servant, the son of Shealtiel,’ says the Lord, ‘and will make you like a signet ring; for I have chosen you,’ says the Lord of hosts.” (Zerubbabel was a direct descendent of Jesus Christ, as noted in Matthew and Luke’s genealogies.  He may have been directly related to both Joseph and Mary.  Jesus, like Zerubbabel, was used of God to rebuild God’s spiritual temple, a process which we are privileged to be used in).

 
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Posted by on September 2, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Go, Bring, Build (From Haggai 1)

Haggai 1 (NKJV):

1 In the second year of King Darius (mighty, ruler), in the sixth month, on the first day of the month, the word of the LORD came by Haggai the prophet to Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, saying, 2 “Thus speaks the LORD of hosts, saying: ‘This people says, “The time has not come, the time that the LORD’s house should be built (the people of God do not truly believe the time is NOW for true revival, for the will of God to be done on earth as it is in heaven).”’”  3 Then (again) the word of the LORD came by Haggai the prophet, saying, 4 “Is it time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses, and this temple to lie in ruins?” (Do you really believe it’s the time to edify yourself or the religious structures of man, while ignoring the spiritual shambles of God’s temple (His people))?  5 Now therefore, thus says the LORD of hosts: “Consider your ways! (Look at the fruit of your foolishness and selfishness):

6 “You have sown much, and bring in little;
You eat, but do not have enough;
You drink, but you are not filled with drink;
You clothe yourselves, but no one is warm;
And he who earns wages,
Earns wages to put into a bag with holes.” (Despite their religious labor, God’s people are spiritually barely scraping by).

7 Thus says the LORD of hosts: “Consider your ways!  (Look at the fruit of your ways – your ignorant, foolish and selfish ways). 8 Go up to the mountains (spiritual realm/in the spirit/in Christ) and bring wood (spiritual building materials – Truth, revelation knowledge, wisdom, power…) and build the temple that I may take pleasure in it and be glorified,” says the LORD. (Repent and begin doing your part to bring restoration and correction to the body of Christ.  Only connection with and submission to Christ, the head, will produce fruit, pleasing and bringing glory to the Father).  9 “You looked for much, but indeed it came to little; and when you brought it home, I blew it away. (Though God’s people expected to possess lasting fruit, God Himself prevented them).  Why?” says the LORD of hosts. “Because of My house that is in ruins, while every one of you runs to his own house (we have been occupied with our own affairs, particularly our own church/denomination/view, or our own salvation and sanctification, while the body of Christ at large, God’s temple, is in ruins). 10 Therefore the heavens above you withhold the dew, and the earth withholds its fruit. 11 For I called for a drought on the land and the mountains, on the grain and the new wine and the oil, on whatever the ground brings forth, on men and livestock, and on all the labor of your hands.” (God Himself causes total spiritual barrenness among His people, despite their labor and expectation, because they have neglected the state of God’s temple in order to care for that which directly concerns themselves).  

12 Then Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, and Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, with all the remnant of the people (the “elect” discussed in the New Testament), obeyed the voice of the LORD their God, and the words of Haggai the prophet, as the LORD their God had sent him; and the people feared the presence of the LORD. (They heeded God’s word as given through Haggai, and reverenced/desired God’s presence). 13 Then (after their repentance – change of mind) Haggai, the LORD’s messenger, spoke the LORD’s message to the people, saying, “I am with you, says the LORD.” (God reminds them He is for them, not against them, like Romans 8:31).  14 So the LORD stirred up the spirit of Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and the spirit of Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest and the spirit of all the remnant of the people (God Himself stirred their spirits); and they came and worked on the house of the LORD of hosts, their God, (they did as God said, going to the “mountains,” getting “wood,”  and beginning to work on His house, not just theirs) 15 on the twenty-fourth day of the sixth month, in the second year of King Darius.”

-I believe this chapter contains a call God has given to all with ears to hear, summarized as “go, bring, build” (verse 8). 

-This passage (and others similar to it) reminds me of Jesus’ words in Matthew 6:33:   “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.  If we will be more concerned for the kingdom of God (build His house/temple) than we are our own “house” (that which interests us, religious/spiritual or otherwise), He will add all we need.  Otherwise, we may labor but will never experience abundance or rest.

I’ll probably look at the actual rebuilding of the temple, discussed in Haggai 2 and Ezra, next time, so come back!  God bless you.

 
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Posted by on August 15, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Spirit of Wisdom and Revelation

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“…that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ*, the Father of the glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the recognition of him, the eyes of your understanding being enlightened, for your knowing what is the hope of His calling, and what the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints and what the exceeding greatness of His power to us who are believing, according to the working of the power of His might…”  -The Apostle Paul, Ephesians 1:17-19, YLT

Just about everyone would agree Paul probably had a pretty good idea of what was needed and helpful for those following Christ, so looking at the things he prayed for others can be very helpful.  Paul’s primary desire for the Ephesians seems to be that they would have understanding.  Maybe the need for understanding seems simple or obvious, but we MUST recognize that this isn’t “understanding” like we think of it in our natural lives, which has to do with a mental grasp of something.  The understanding Paul refers to is spiritual; it is obtained and functions very differently than natural understanding used in one’s natural life.   

By his own words, the understanding he prayed for has two components: a God-given “spirit of wisdom and revelation in the recognition of Him” and involvesthe eyes of your understanding being enlightened.”  It’s common and easy to assume we know what these things truly are or that we possess them, but assumptions are so dangerous.  We will never truly know God, in an intimate and real way, unless He grants to us a “spirit of wisdom and revelation” and unless the “eyes” of our understanding are “enlightened.”  So what does that mean?

“Revelation” is basically an uncovering or an exposure; it’s seeing the essence of something, without filter or distortion.  “Wisdom” is more of a spiritual concept and is harder to define, but I would define it here as “an impartation of the mind of God.”  I think Paul is basically saying this: “I pray God would grant you, by His spirit’s working within you, a connection and agreement with the mind of God and an unclouded, undistorted vision of spiritual reality, that you can truly know and experience union with the Father, that your understanding would be based on spiritual light…”  And he goes on from there.  The reason he prayed this is because there is a great tendency in man toward  understanding spiritual concepts with the non-spiritual, carnal mind.  The carnal mind can be religious and good, but it cannot receive spiritual revelation, rejects “enlightenment,” refuses to subject itself to God, and is both fearful of and opposed to the true knowledge of God.  This is why Paul prayed the Ephesians would spiritually possess wisdom and revelation, and have enlightened eyes of understanding.  Enlightened = spiritually perceptive, as opposed to naturally perceptive.

I hope that makes more sense.  I pray these same things for myself and all fellow believers, because without sight, understanding, wisdom, and revelation, we are like a blind man trying to navigate an unfamiliar journey alone and without help.  At that point, there are really only two options: stay put but pretend you can see and are making progress, or admit you are blind and helpless, and cry out for mercy and grace to remedy your pitiful situation.  I hope more and more are rejecting the pretense of claiming to see while blind, and coming to see their destitution.  It’s at that point that desperation sets in and things can change.   

Father, may those of us who name the name of Christ recognize and admit our blindness and destitution, seeing that all our good works and good will haven’t truly connected us with You or furthered Your kingdom, but only our imagination of it.  In desperation and longing, may we cry out to You, to grant us a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of You, an enlightened understanding, eyes to see and ears to hear.  We want to be able to see and hear You according to Your way, so we can cooperate with You in establishing Your kingdom, for Your glory.  Amen.

 

 

*Jesus had a God?  Interesting…  

 
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Posted by on June 30, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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The Father’s Good Pleasure (Rich Toward God pt. 3)

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“Do not fear, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.”1  -Jesus Christ

“Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for He has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”  So we can confidently say, “The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?”2

Jesus and the first apostles said often that God’s children are not to fear.  The ultimate reason behind that exhortation is always the love of God the Father I believe fear and love are opposites.  Fear is a driving force of the blind soul (mind, life) of man, while love is a driving force of man’s divine spirit.  Fear is rooted in insecurity and leads to self-focus of a million different forms.  Love is rooted in being secure in God and is absent of self-awareness. 

*Note: You can skip this paragraph if you’re familiar with the parable I examined in parts 1 and 2 of the “Rich Toward God” blogs.  If not, here’s a quick refresher: a man has fields that produce a harvest larger than his barns can hold.  He reasons within himself and decides to build bigger barns, store up all his produce, and take it easy for years to come.  God then visits him and tells him he’s foolish, because his life is being taken and all he planned or worked for will not benefit him at all.  Jesus says this is how it will be for everyone who stores up treasure for themselves and are not “rich toward God,” meaning to have an abundance of the spiritual things God finds valuable. 

The verses immediately following this parable (22-34 or so) are probably more well-known to most Christians, but many (like me until just recently) don’t seem to realize they are a continuation of the train of thought which began with the preceding parable.  It’s important to note that while the parable was given to the crowd that gathered around Jesus, the teaching that followed is said to be given exclusively to his disciples; to the few who truly and consistently followed him.  Therefore what he said doesn’t necessarily apply to those on the “broad way” who claim to follow Jesus but in reality just want their needs supplied.

In these verses, the first thing Jesus instructs his disciples is to “take no thought” or “do not be anxious/worried/preoccupied” regarding physical needs such as food and clothing! He then reminds his disciples that life goes beyond what is sustained by physical food, and the body goes beyond the physical shell we clothe.  Jesus said that though we are worth much more than birds or flowers, His Father yet provides food for the birds who have no barns (unlike the rich man) and He beautifully clothes the flowers though they don’t toil (unlike the rich man again).  Worrying about and trying to prolong or benefit our natural life (like the rich man did) is contrary to the way of a follower of Jesus, and storing up earthly treasures for ease or security will actually tie down one’s heart (awareness, devotion) to the earth.  That’s “no bueno” for a someone seeking to follow the spiritual path of their master.

Here’s Jesus conclusion: 

“For all the nations of the world seek after these things, and your Father knows that you need them.  Instead, seek His kingdom, and these things will be added to you.”3

It’s interesting, there are two different Greek words used for “seek” in this passage.  The nations of the world “epizeteo” selfish needs such as food, clothing, ease and security.  Epizeteo means to seek selfishly, in order to satisfy a desire or craving.  Jesus said that instead, or differently, his followers are to “zeteo” the kingdom of God, which means to seek with no strings attached, simply for the worth or beauty of the thing sought.  Zeteo is actually a form of worship.

Again, God is well aware that His children have physical needs, and His kingdom (rule, dominion) includes them.  Therefore, Jesus can say this next:  “Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.4

Isn’t that beautiful and exciting?  God found it good and fitting to give the kingdom to the “little” flock that followed Jesus.  In the first chapters of Acts, we can see some of what the spirit of Christ in them began to do, under his headship.  There are two types of seekers: needers and worshipers.  I think still today it is God’s “good pleasure” to give the kingdom to those who seek it as worshipers, as those who want God to be glorified regardless of their own ease or security.  Those who seek the kingdom and righteousness of God in order to know and worship Him don’t need to fear or worry about their physical needs. 

Do you ever find yourself, with no ulterior motive, stirred to know, worship and give glory to God?  Do you have even a small desire or inkling to be free of religion, pat answers and bland doctrines?  If so, I pray that desire is fanned into flame.  However small or weak your desire may seem, use it.  I think the “flock” of true disciples today is still relatively little, but I also hope and believe this flock will grow.  It will require a revolution, though.  Come, Lord Jesus.   

 

  1. Luke 12:32 NASB
  2. Hebrews 13:5-6 ESV 
  3. Luke 12:30-31 ESV  
  4. Luke 12:32 ESV  

 

 

 
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Posted by on May 6, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Rich Toward God, pt. 2

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I believe all Jesus’ parables are given to believers, and each time a man is spoken of, he represents a group of people.  This rich man represents a “church” which is carnal, or led by her darkened mind.  Immediately after making up his mind to build bigger barns to store up his grain and goods, God addresses him directly: You fool! (literally: “one without perception!”) This very night your soul is required of you; and now who will own what you have prepared?’  To be seen as a fool by the God you claim to worship is truly sad. 

Jesus concludes this parable by contrasting two ways of life, which I believe are mutually exclusive:  “So is the man who lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.”  The foolish rich man planned and labored to “lay up treasure,” i.e. to get ease and security, for himself.  As I mentioned before, it’s possible to, by all appearances, be very good in doing this, but the real issue is the SOURCE of the plan and action.  In this case, the source was this man’s own mind/soul. 

Being “rich toward God” is entirely differentRich toward God” literally translates “rich toGod,” meaning to be rich in God’s sight, or: “to possess and be that which God finds desirable.” The “rich toward God” have an inward ownership of spiritual riches such as wisdom, understanding, and fruit.  They are those who have been given eyes to see, ears to hear and have used these senses.  They have nourished the seed of God’s Word and life in them, and are producing a crop of spiritual fruit.  The independent soul of man cannot and will not value the things God finds desirable. No amount of success in any plan or goal which came from one’s own reasoning will survive the testing fire of God, thus the result will be “poverty toward God!”  We have to be so careful and diligent on this issue, because the transition from soul to spirit/Adam to Christ is not instant or easy, and many in their blindness continue to walk foolishly and will lose everything they worked for.

If we want to follow Jesus, we MUST NOT live from and according to that life and realm which is done away in Christ,1 which God has no desire for or dealings with.  Again, this can be called many things with fair accuracy: the old man, the carnal/fleshly/natural mind, the Adamic nature, soul, ego, self, natural life. This is the realm which in Christ has been done away, and what we must continue to reject.  It’s this we are to be set free from.  There is no other option – to follow Christ’s way requires rejection of self/flesh/Adam/soul/carnal mind/”reason.”  Jesus said so himself.  To persist in blindness and carnality, no matter one’s behavior or beliefs, will result in the loss of everything.

I think everyone is either storing up treasure from and for themselves, or coming to possess spiritual wealth in God’s eyes by seeking His word, heeding it, and humbling themselves (in other words, by following the way of Jesus).  If you sense truth in this, sincerely ask God to lead you to true wealth and seek Him diligently.  Repentance is always step #1, and it’s simply changing your mind to conform to what God is showing you by revelation.  I am leaning towards making a part 3 sometime in which I look at the famous teaching Jesus gave immediately following this parable, which makes more sense when you keep this parable in mind.  Maybe I’ll do so in a video.  I hope this blog is something the Spirit of God can use.  God bless you.

 

1. 2 Corinthians 5:17

 

 
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Posted by on April 28, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Moses to Christ = Shadow to Substance

“Now Moses was faithful in all His house as a servant, for a testimony of those things which were to be spoken later; but Christ was faithful as a Son over His house—whose house we are, if we hold fast our confidence and the boast of our hope firm until the end.”  -Hebrews 3:5,6

I’d like to expand on the meaning of this passage a bit.  Warning!  Rabbit trail immediately ahead, skip the portion in parenthesis if you wish.  (I realize that to some, it seems  pointless to examine the Greek meanings of Biblical words and phrases, but this isn’t always the case.  When I look at the Greek, I do so for one simple reason – I want to know the meaning that was being conveyed by the author!  There are many great English translations, but none are without any deficiency.  I prefer more literal translations, but I have also learned that a strict, literal interpretation from Greek to English might not make much sense unless you approach the text spiritually, which many translators didn’t.  In reference to the King James Version, I’ve heard it said that those who translated the text were “more interested in translation than in truth,” and priority number one for most translations is to make the text readable.  While this is understandable, it is also a problem if an awkward or strange literal meaning was conveying a spiritual truth.  This is just one example of why looking at the Greek can be useful). 

Notice that Moses was a faithful servant (meaning attendant) in God’s house.  It’s hard to overstate the importance of Moses’ role in regards to God’s plan for the Israelites of his day.  In Hebrews, Moses is basically being considered as the old covenant equivalent of Christ. Moses was THE go-between for God and all of Israel.  The Israelites actually said to Moses: “speak to us yourself and we will listen; but let not God speak to us, or we will die.”2  Moses carried out this duty very well, and in Jesus’ day, Moses was still given the highest place of honor short of God Himself.

This is well and good, but Moses is long dead and most believers know (to an extent) that we aren’t under the law of Moses anymore.  So why would the author of Hebrews, who understood the new covenant very well, give such attention to Moses?  The reason is stated in the passage above: Moses’ ministry was for a testimony of those things which were to be spoken later…”  This means God had a greater purpose behind Moses’ ministry.  All the laws, regulations and commands God gave to and through Moses were intended primarily to be a “testimony” – a physical, earthly representation – of this greater, ultimate spiritual purpose and reality which was to come thousands of years later in Christ.  In fact, all of the Old Testament stories, laws, and rules, (many of which seem strange and pointless), served this purpose in one way or another.  Amazing, isn’t it? 

Here’s the main contrast: Moses = attending servant in God’s house. He had no claim to rulership or authority over the house, he just was a faithful servant in the house. Jesus = son over God’s house (which consists of true believers!) Jesus had authority and rulership over God’s household which Moses never had.  Remember, Moses = servant, Jesus = son.  In a household, a servant, no matter how faithful and valuable they are, can never reach a status higher than a guest.  A son (or daughter) are and will always be a part of the household, an heir, an equal.  Jesus came to bring this transition; bringing carnal, law-aware servants into adoption as God-aware, spiritual sons.  He came to bring those who followed the shadow (the physical law of Moses) to those who possess the substance (spiritual reality).  It’s as stark a contrast as that between a reflection of an object and the object itself, or a drawing of a house and the house itself.  With the exact same thing in mind, John wrote: “For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth were realized through Jesus Christ.”3  Paul wrote of this also, at length.4

Having laid this foundation, our passage states we are members of, participants in, and the very building materials of the house of God, “if we hold fast our confidence and the boast of our hope firm until the end.”  There always seems to be a pesky “if,” and we better not ignore it.  Having looked closely at the Greek, here’s what this means: “We are of God’s house if we seize and refuse to let go of the truth of the (radical) freedom of our sonship as well as the glorious rejoicing we have in the expectation of all that is given and promised, until these things fully mature within us and we take ownership of them.”  Amen!  I encourage you to re-read and meditate on these things, and look at the scriptures I referenced.  God bless you. 

  1. Hebrews 3:5,6
  2. Exodus 20:19
  3. John 1:17
  4. Primarily in the book of Galatians. Perhaps most clearly in 4:1-7.
 
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Posted by on March 4, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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