1 Apr 2018
April 1, 2018
Truth & Love vs Logs of Judgement
Acts 17: 10-15
That very night the believers sent Paul and Silas to Berea. When they arrived three, they went to the synagogue. and the people of Berea were more open-minded than those in Thessalonica, and they listened eagerly to Paul's message. They searched the Scriptures day after day to check up on Paul and Silas to see if they were really teaching the truth. As a result, many Jews believed, as did some of the prominent Greek women and many men.
But when some Jews in Thessalonica learned that Paul was preaching the word of God in Berea, they went there and stirred up trouble. The believers acted at once, sending Paul on to the coast, while Silas and Timothy remained behind. Those escorting Paul went with him to Athens; then they returned to Berea with a message for Silas and Timothy to hurry and join him.
Brothers and Sisters, recently I was asked if souls have a gender. The question was regarding accepted entrance into heaven.
In Galatians 3:24-28 we learn from Paul, "There is no longer Jew or Gentile, slave or free, male or female. For you are all Christians - you are one in Christ Jesus. And now that you belong to Christ, you are the true children of Abraham. You are his heirs, and now all the promises God gave to him belong to you."
In Luke 10:25-28 we learn an expert in religious law asked Jesus "Teacher, what must I do to receive eternal life?" Jesus asked him what the law of Moses said. Jesus wanted his understanding of it.
The man answered, " 'You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind' And, 'love your neighbor as yourself.' "
"Right!" Jesus told him. "Do this and you will live!" [Be given eternal life/enter heaven.]
I told my friend that getting to heaven had to do with having a relationship with Jesus Christ and obeying him.
In Matthew 7:21-23 Jesus said, "Not all people who sound religious are really godly. They may refer to me as 'Lord' but they won't enter the Kingdom of Heaven. The decisive issue is whether they obey my Father in heaven. On judgment day many will tell me, 'Lord, Lord, we prophesied in your name and cast out demons in your name and performed many miracles in your name.' But I will reply, 'I never knew you. Go away, the things you did were unauthorized.'
The bottom line here is that some of the people professing themselves to be Christians, and who refer to Jesus as 'Lord' are judgmental, which is not/should not be a term in the definition of Christian or love or obey. In fact, per the reference above, Jesus judged the judgmental.
In Matthew 7:24-29 Jesus said "Anyone who listens to my teaching and obeys me is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock. Though the rain and the winds beat against that house, it won't collapse, because it is built on rock. But anyone who hears my teaching and ignores it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand. When the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will fall with a nighty crash."
Truthfully, anyone can get to heaven, should they choose to accept Jesus as Savior and obey him, if they have not. Certainly, it would appear, based on what we have learned so far, those being judged who have accepted Jesus and obey him, have a greater opportunity to get to heaven/obtain eternal life than those who are judgmental and 'churching'.
I suspect my comments, based on what Jesus said, and scriptural fact (as opposed to being judgmental), on how some people act will stir up trouble, as happened in todays reference, 'the people in Berea were more open-minded than those in Thessalonica'. As you can read for yourself - there's only one way to get into heaven and it has everything to do with loving Jesus and not being judgmental. There are some really judgmental people defining others as different than themselves, yet I'm guessing they wouldn't own their sin of being judgmental, ETC. AND they call themselves Christians.
Remember the following, "He ain't heavy, he's my brother."
Limited knowledge can create oceans of judgement where none need exist.
Jesus said "Stop judging others, and you will not be judged. For others will treat you as you treat them. Whatever measure you use in judging others, it will be used to measure how you are judged. And why worry about a speck in your friend's eye when you have a log in your own? How can you think of saying, 'Friend, let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye', when you can't see past the log in your own eye? Hypocrite! First get rid of the log from your own eye, then perhaps you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friends eye."
Is that log named judgement?
What is the speck in the eye of another? Could it be a choice made under God's authority that you do not understand? Could it be choices made from pain and scarring caused by the log(s) thrown from the judgmental eye?
Negative log in your eye? Be no more! Negative speck in your eye? Be healed! Positive, loving choices under God's authority? Enjoy.
Be sure you do not threaten another with judgmental accusations and proclaimed judgements as to whether they or another will or will not get into heaven. It's not up to you. It's up to God, Jesus, Holy Spirit, and the relationship they have with, and actions exhibited toward, them as they obey them as a believer.
Our God is a loving God, as are Jesus, and Holy Spirit. They may reprimand to direct us, caution us, applaud us, hug us, and love us. But they will never spew forth hate filled, judgmental jargon at anyone, nor will they condemn anyone for loving and being loved under the New Testament loving way of life.
Because you, Mr., Ms., or Mrs. Judgmental do not believe in something, does not mean it does not, or should not, exist, or is wrong. Never ever cause another to fall or stumble on the journey of life which may lead to Jesus in heaven. Why would anyone want Jesus, if you 'have' him and are being judgmental, accusatory, denying someone a right and privilege of love and resurrection opportunity you have no right to deny or bestow?
Folks, the gift of Easter is the promise of a final resurrection, the gift Jesus gave us when he took upon himself our sins, yet was raised to new life - eternal life - in heaven.
This Easter, lets all focus on the loving salvation and resurrection of Jesus Christ, ponder why he loves us so much and willing in that love to have lain his life down to be raised up to new heights of glory. Realize that we have that opportunity to receive God's, Jesus', Holy Spirit's love now, and be with them forever in heaven one day. Will you be there?
Happy Easter - Everyone! Glorious resurrection to all!
Let Us Pray
God, Jesus, Holy Spirit, forgive us our sins. Create in us a new heart, mind, spirit - HOLY Spirit. Baptize us with the fullness of your love and healing touch. Show us how to love as you love. Let us look upon another as you see them. And please God, let us live with you in paradise by teaching us how to have a relationship with you, what pleases you, what does not, how to obey you, be your friend, help us to allow you to be ours. We are so grateful to know you've made a way for us to be with our loved ones through all eternity. That we will never be alone, or lonely, because you are with us. You carry us when the going gets tough. Thank you, Lord. And thank you for clarifying that the choices we make are not wrong, if you have okayed them as the author of love and acceptance. How can love ever be wrong? It cannot be when love comes from you. Thank you for allowing us to realize where we might have a log in our eye, and be a burden, not a help, to others. Thank you for helping us hear from you how we may have scarred others by the choices we've made, so we can then ask them, as well as you, for forgiveness. And help us better understand your choices for our lives and for others around us. We seem to think we are so smug in our rightness, when indeed, per you, we are being smug in our being wrong. Please forgive us, and show us a better path, journey with us to a better understanding and acceptance of others....and you, your love. Thank you that we will not die in vain, but in your truth, your light, and wholeness. in and with you. Thank you for the opportunity to receive a resurrected life in heaven with you, if you'll forgive us, we sin no more, we build a relationship with you, and obey you. Thank you, God, for giving us your son, Jesus. Thank you for making something right over something so horribly wrong - a life of persecution, pain, sorrow, suffering, his death - a life of love, giving of himself, teaching truth, salvation, and resurrection not only for himself, but offered to all. Thank you for giving us Holy Spirit, when Jesus went to heaven, to continue to teach us truth, comfort us, and guide us to a new life with you and Jesus. Receive our love,,with our gratitude, this day and everyday. We praise you. We thank you. We love you. Amen.
P.S Dear Family in Christ,
You may notice a disconnect in time between the last 'Thought' and this current one. Life, and Satan, have ways of keeping us from doing the most important things we need to do. I've added the 'Thoughts' I wrote last year and never added to the site, due to technical issues predominately, to conclude March of 2017. Easter being on April 1, 2018 seemed appropriate to finally be able to resurrect 'Thoughts'. You may continue to see a blip in the timeline as I catch up. Please forgive me for the delays, and pray all the more. I earnestly desire to serve the Lord with all my heart, soul, and mind, and serve your needs to assist you in learning the truths of the Gospel. May your hearts, souls, and minds be open to Holy Spirit as the journey continues....hang on for the ride. And thank you for understanding. Be blessed!
Grateful for God's lesson today?
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Let us hear from Paul as he prays:
When I think of the wisdom and scope of God's plan, I fall to my knees and pray to the Father, the Creator of everything in heaven and on earth. I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will give you mighty inner strength through his Holy Spirit. And I pray that Christ will be more and more at home in your hearts as you trust in him. May your roots go down deep into the soil of God's marvelous love. And may you have the power to understand, as all God's people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love really is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is so great you will never fully understand it. Then you will be filled with the fullness of life and power that comes from God.
Now glory be to God! By his mighty power at work within us, he is able to accomplish infinitely more than we would ever dare to ask or hope. May he be given glory in the church and in Christ Jesus forever and ever through endless ages. Amen. Ephesians 3:14-21 NLT
Scroll down to read Jesus' Prayer of Thanksgiving...'The Unforced Rhythms of Grace'.
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It is time to reach into the community and the world around you to see wherein lies the greatest need. As you choose to focus on these areas, do so with a servant's heart. Whether the need is for children, adults, animals, the earth, or any cause in between that will help those in need, ask God how you can best serve his needs, what path you must take, and how long you should persevere. Sometimes we are to be in the lives of others merely as stepping stones. Sometimes we are to touch those lives forever. Whatever journey you are called to take, whatever team you will be a member, know this: God is with you always...even til the end of time. He loves you, is grateful for you, and will help you along life's way, especially if you are helping others along theirs, persevering with a servant's heart.
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One last thing....
Jesus' Prayer of Thanksgiving
'The Unforced Rhythms of Grace'
"Abruptly Jesus broke into prayer: "Thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth. You've concealed your ways from sophisticates and know-it-alls, but spelled them out clearly to ordinary people. Yes, Father, that's the way you like to work."
Jesus resumed talking to the people, but now tenderly. "The Father has given me all these things to do and say. This is a unique Father - Son operation, coming out of Father and Son intimacies and knowledge. No one knows the Son the way the Father does, nor the Father the way the Son does. But I'm not keeping it to myself; I'm ready to go over it line by line with anyone willing to listen."
"Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you'll recover your life. I'll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me - watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won't lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you'll learn how to live freely and lightly.
Matthew 11: 25-30
And the people said,
I now write most prayers in the position of ' I ' (first person) because most people are sitting at their computer alone, not in groups, and it allows those reading and praying to personalize the prayer as coming from them going to God. Variations may appear on holidays when families may wish to use the prayer provided. I encourage you to pray your own prayers as well.
Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.
NOTE: I said it long ago, but let me say it again. If you are wanting to lead a group, start a church, or are confined in an institution, or live in a country where the Gospel is not preached, and you don't know what to say or how to say it, and yet feel led to share, teach, or preach, besides just reading straight out of the Bible and sharing what God puts on your heart, please feel free to share any or all of what I've written, if it will help you, as long as you include where it comes from, due to copyright laws. Jesus gave God's love and healing freely, as well as his message. Our responsibility is to get the Word out to those who need to hear it. If what I've written....by the power and direction of the Holy Spirit....or what he has said through me....has helped you, it may help others that you know. You are welcome to share it. God calls all of us to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ with the world. Please share it with the fullness of love that God, Jesus, Holy Spirit....and I....have given it. Amen!
Bible Authors and Minister