Sunday, March 30, 2008

Another One Of My Unpopular Views

The issue was brought up about the girl who died from diabetes; she had no medical treatment because either the parents didn't know what was wrong and/or they were trusting God to heal her.
So many people have been incensed that they didn't speed the girl to the doctor and trust doctors and medicine over God. Totally understandable for non-believers but Christians are furious too. They say these parents were taking off on their own little track, not handling the Word of God accurately, other similar comments. They assume that because the child died, the parents are wrong and to blame; they should have counted on doctors instead of God. But if the child had died even under a doctor's care, then what? THEN it would have been God's will.

There are people who believe that there are too many risks with many of the medicines we use. There are rumors and articles about side effects and poor results being covered up so the drug companies can continue making money. There are questions about the logo used for the medical field; questions about terms in the bible that imply we should have nothing to do with pharmaceuticals.

What about all the verses that say not to love this life?
Seems that everyone believes that no measure should ever be spared to keep someone in this life. Why?
I assume the parents ARE devastated by their daughter's death, I would be too. But that would be because of MY loss, not hers. If you believe she went immediately to heaven, she's much better off now than she was here. If you think she's dead until the resurrection, she's still not suffering. Her next moment will be the resurrection.
Why do people believe they were wrong to leave it up to God?
That child could have had kidnapping, rape, and murder in her future but God, in His wonderful, infinite love, spared her that.
She may have had a wonderful life in store. We don't know. So why isn't it okay that she no longer suffers this life?

Obviously we have a built-in desire for survival - but isn't that so we leave it up to God when we die instead of "escaping" this life at our whim?

I sympathize with their loss, with their second-guessing, with the blame they'll have to deal with but there's even a verse about that: (paraphrased) Count it all joy when you are reviled and hated for my name's sake...

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Bizarre "Promise"

This is what I just found online, very bizarre:

Wouldn't It Be Incredible To Have The Formula
to Allow You to Harness A Higher Power?

It's supposed to be about "God". My question is about there being a formula. At first it sounded incredibly insulting to our Creator, but if these people see God as a power, spiritual energy of the universe, it makes sense. I haven't looked through the site because I wasn't interested in such an odd view of using a formula to control God. But thinking a little further, I am curious to see if the author is referring to universal energy. Our very cells are made of atoms which are basically energy, right?
Nathan on his blog Stories Poetry Apologetics & Rants said:

I have felt the power of God sweep through my being
in a manner completely undeniable.

Three times I have gone back to that page just to read that line.

Friday, March 28, 2008

A Little More...
It was also mentioned in the site I was referred to, that avoiding pork was not intended by our Heavenly Father as a health measure. It was said that the laws were merely to keep the Israelites separate from other nations by their customs. But in Exodus 15:26, scripture states:
He said, "If you listen carefully to the voice of the Lord your God and do what is right in his eyes, if you pay attention to his commands and keep all his decrees, I will not bring on you any of the diseases I brought on the Egyptians, for I am the Lord, who heals you."

And Leviticus 14 and 15 at least are clear in giving commands and regulations for quarantine, cleanliness, and health.

There also seems to be a difference in commands of which disobedience is punished, and others that are actually instruction, the ignorance or disobedience of which is followed by natural consequences.

Not Eating Pork - Reply To Comment

Acts 15:5-12 and Acts 15:19-29 (the whole chapter really)

A comment was left (for my previous post) that claims pork is not prohibited to Christians.
About eating pork according to Acts 15:
There are two things that are not usually taken into account when this passage is discussed to say the law is only for the Jews and not for Gentiles.
One is that these Pharisees were claiming that FOR SALVATION, the Gentiles must do these things; they claimed they had to do these things to be acceptable to the Father. Acts 15:10-11 says otherwise. It doesn't say they are to never do them, just that these things don't keep them from being accepted.
Two is that in verse 21, they state that Moses is preached in the synagogues every sabbath. Why would this be mentioned at all unless it's to point out that they will learn as they grow in the faith? These Gentiles didn't have a whole lifetime of being brought up in the law; they wouldn't be expected to suddenly be required to keep every bit. It seems to have been made clear that it was not to be required of them immediately, they would be given the chance to learn as every Jewish child had.

Acts 15:19 Wherefore my sentence is, that we trouble not them, which from among the Gentiles are turned to YHWH:
Acts 15:20 But that we write unto them, that they abstain from pollutions of idols, and from fornication, and from things strangled, and from blood.
Acts 15:21 For Moses of old time hath in every city them that preach him, being read in the synagogues every Sabbath day.

What are we to make of the fact that Christians are considered grafted into natural Israel? If Christians become part of Israel, what part of "Jewish" law doesn't pertain to them? There was to be one law for the Jew and the strangers that live among them. And since the sacrificial death of Messiah, we are now to become one new man, no divisions.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Law Keeping and Green Earth

Many people seem to be quite concerned about health - theirs and that of the planet we depend on. This, to me, goes right to keeping the law of scripture and the whole question of whether or not to do so.
There are those who insist keeping ANY law means you're "under the law", that's directly from scripture. But really, it obviously doesn't mean what they're saying! This would mean that we are to refuse to keep all laws, I would have to marry my grandfather, find a few people to steal from and murder, make sure my yard is unsafe for people to walk through... Obviously the scripture is saying, If you're keeping the law to be justified, you have to keep all of it perfectly at all times, and that doesn't happen.

I don't see why everyone is so upset at being a "legalist, a law-keeper" anyway. I've never aspired to being a law-BREAKER.

Enough of that, here's the question about "being green". We are to be taking care of the earth; whatever we do toward that end is good and probably expected. But what about the food laws, health laws, all of those? It seems that if we seriously try to avoid all forbidden, unclean things, we'll fail miserably. I'm not sure there are even any things clean left! Recently I discovered even paper towels use pork fat in them - what the heck is that about? Our land is defiled from pollution and unclean things, is anything growing in it safe?
I can imagine getting so concerned about this whole "clean" concept, that there would be no time left for the greater matters of love and mercy.
But we can't ignore them either. Maybe this is what the Bible means when it talks about the Creator putting a curse on the land because of the sin of the inhabitants - our land is hardly fit and safe because we don't work and live in general the way we are intended to do.

I'm linking a few sites on my sidebar that have drawn my attention back to being more conscientious of the earth I should NOT be taking for granted. This physical world is not perfect so all we can do is our best and for the rest, rely on the promises of protection (like the one about picking up deadly snakes and not being hurt).

Monday, March 24, 2008

Ever Been Advised To Keep A Journal?

My prayer journal isn't quite like I expected. Have you ever been advised to keep one where you keep track of people, things, and situations you've prayed about? The idea seemed a bit too check-register-like to me but I thought it was worth a try. I ended up with something a little different.

At first I wrote about discovering that what I thought I knew about God and religion, Jesus, etc., probably wasn't true. I had been getting confused and started doubting a lot of things. Finally I stood in my bedroom, raised my head and my voice and demanded that if He expected me to tell anyone anything, He needed to let me know the truth!

I never hit the floor so fast in my life!!!

It's SO very different to "believe" than to have the very presence of the Almighty God right there in your face! Very different, way too intense, scared me almost to DEATH. He started pouring knowledge and understanding into my head, it took a second, one second, was it even that long?! before I was begging, Stop! Stop! I can't handle this!

You know the saying, "You couldn't handle the truth if I told you,"? That's what I discovered. It's true. HIS knowledge was way too much for me.

Then, to drive the point home I suppose, a song was on the radio that I had never heard before; Who Am I by Point of Grace. The lyrics I heard?

Who am I
To understand Your ways?
Who am I
To give You anything but praise?
Who am I
To try and solve the mystery
Behind the heart and soul of all that I believe?
Who am I?

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Hope This Isn't What We Sing!

This Is SO Funny! I love this list of songs for the lukewarm church!
Here's the link:

Songs Of The Lukewarm


This is difficult, not doing the typical celebrations. I don't do easter or christmas so what DO I do? There are festivals commanded in scripture; I want to celebrate those and I will. It's a little difficult to figure out how they are to be done now, after Yahushua has come. It's obviously way different, the festivals were a foreshadowing of his coming and other works our Heavenly Father will do. Some are fulfilled, some are not yet.

I realize many argue that we shouldn't keep any of the festivals now but I fail to see that replacing them with "pagan" festivals is an improvement. It's just odd to do nothing on days when everyone else is celebrating. I'm worried that my laziness and my boys' introversion will make us do nothing out of apathy instead of any conviction. We need to find someone who has experience keeping God's commanded festivals the way we do now. Obviously things are changed, like Passover, the sacrifice that lasts has been made. It will help at Passover if I've found someone to keep it with.

The Feast of Unleavened Bread is one I tried to celebrate last year. I cleared my house of leaven - I thought. There is leaven in things I had never known about, I didn't even really know what leaven was before at all. To discover I hadn't "fulfilled" even the basic physical requirements was a shock. Of course, the point was to clean "leaven (sin) from my heart and life". This just brought it home so strongly that no matter how hard I tried and how much I thought I could do, I failed. It doesn't come from me.

For people who would have been successful, perhaps someone who enjoys cooking, what impact would this day have? They still would have to be on the lookout for someone who innocently brought a gift that had leaven - and that would point out that temptation to sin is not always obvious. It can be a temptation because you wonder, "do I accept this gift and not hurt their feelings or is that putting this person before YHWH who commanded to avoid it for a time?" What about the fact that love is demonstrated in obedience? Which is love? Will it be different for each person depending on their understanding at the time?

I have never managed a full year of keeping the feasts YHWH calls His own. (Some people call these Jewish feasts because they were the people He first revealed them to.) The first place I heard about them was NOT in church, it was from a homeschooling curriculum I read about long ago called Heart Of Wisdom. The woman whose family developed this curriculum is online here at Heart Of Wisdom

Friday, March 21, 2008

Works "Required"

Works ARE required, not as a means to anything, but they will be the result. If there are no works, then one isn't "saved" because that's the proof and the result. I don't yet know if these are things we can do ourselves out of love for the one who saved us by sending his Son, or if these are things that come about through us because we are being transformed.

I try to do what I know is right, what I think is right, and what I hope is right. There are also things I do that didn't even come from me! I've replied with love to someone that on my own I would have either scathingly insulted or hit. And any rising anger just goes away, it just doesn't matter. Or I look at this person and pray, "Lord, this one doesn't know you or understand you at all. Please show him (or her) what he needs to at least consider you."


I choose it more often now, but at the beginning, I was totally caught by surprise. But it made sense. When 'he came to me', everything changed. I understood like I could never understand before. I realized there is no reason to try to work up enough belief to be acceptable. Scripture even says the belief itself comes from HIM; it isn't something we have to try to have. How can we? Pretend to ourselves often enough that we believe something unbelievable, try to convince ourselves things aren't coincidence even when we think it may be?

I was never sure if that's what I was doing or not; afterward I realized I could have NEVER dreamed up the reality on my own, it had to come from him. So how can I ever blame anyone else for not knowing, not believing, not acting from a righteous and holy spirit? If they've never been shown, there's nothing else they can do. Scripture says that too in Romans 8:7.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

God or Jesus? YHWH or Yahushua? Father or Son?

When He reveals Himself to us, whose presence do we experience? The Father is spirit and is the one who says "I am your savior, there is none besides me." Then we're told about the name Yahushua "there is no other name whereby you must be saved." The Son came in the Father's name, in His authority so that's still the name of Yahweh (Jehovah, YHWH). So far no problem.

But when the very spirit of God reveals Himself, His BEINGness to you, is it still through the son? Yahushua was given all authority in heaven and on earth. If he is the intermediary between us and the Father, is he the one with whom we interact? Do we pray TO him? It must be the same way the high priest used to make intercession for the people before Yahushua. I have no personal experience with that type of religion and don't know what is involved. It probably says right in the Bible but I can't get it in my head. The people were supposed to have a direct relationship with the Almighty Himself but they freaked out, totally panicked when He was revealed, felt, and experienced by them at Mount Sinai.

That may not make sense until He shows Himself to you. And I mean beyond the emotional reaction to what we hear and know, beyond the intellectual understanding, I mean when He's RIGHT HERE WITH YOU and all you can do is drop to the floor and wish it were lower! Everything changes then. Waking up in the morning is a new experience after that, making dinner for your family is different, interacting with others at work is different. That's when you can see that the problems of this life don't matter at all, the knowledge we acquire in this life is meaningless, and our "belongings" don't mean much to us anymore. There's another whole dimension to life; it will change your perspective of this one once you've seen it.

So who is it that comes? Using the terms "father, son, Lord, God, savior" make it seem like a question, a paradox, a problem. These I believe, are only ways to help our finite minds form some sort of concept to even begin thinking of spiritual matters. I had a problem for a while trying to figure it out, get my theology straight, still do at times. But when I recognize that I'm trying to get BEING squeezed into a comprehensible package, it makes sense to just stop. I don't need to find the right label. What am I going to do with the labels anyway? Explain spiritual matters to someone who has never experienced the reality? It doesn't work, it can only be meaningless no matter how hard they try; nothing will mean anything until truth is revealed to them and that isn't something that comes from them and it certainly doesn't come from me.

Women Are Meant To Be This Way

As far as I know, men still complain that women nag and nagging women are still fodder for jokes. Is there a new word for this, for nagging?

My theory is this:
Women are created this way for a very good reason;
it's to ensure the survival of small children!

Anyone who's had experience with trying to instill good behavior habits in a child should understand. Do you know how exasperating it is to have to say the same exact words, perform the same exact actions, try to get the same point across over and over all day long?! Perhaps for days or even a week or two in a row? If a woman wasn't set up to "nag", she wouldn't mentally survive and would a child survive at all?

I've noticed that children get into "stages" of certain behaviors for a period of time. We obviously (to me) begin this way to make training more effective. Children, maybe adults as well, need practice to make behavior into a habit. When kids demonstrate the same type of misbehavior consistently and get the same response - not allowed to get away with it - they learn what the requirements are.

The problem is when we (anyone really, male or female) gets into the habit of responding to EVERYONE as if he or she is a child needing to be trained. As a person matures, he or she should be training themselves in right behavior. Teaching, guidance, reminders, consequences: these are what replace the early methods. Using these same early methods on an older child or an adult (a husband!) is now nagging.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Can't Sit Still And Think At The Same Time

It would be so much easier to read forum discussions and people's blogs if I could pace while I read. I must be old - give me BOOKS. The internet is constantly changing though and I want to read discussions. This morning, I started trying to figure out if there is some sort of portable computer and I DON'T mean a laptop; they're too big. Something the size of a book would be good. I started thinking of the few things I know of and what I THINK they are and do:

IPOD - music
Cell phones - phone, camera, video camera, probably more
Palm Pilot - (old now?) - appt. book

Then it hit me! I have no idea why but my son's PSP can go online! Maybe that's what I need!

Oh, well, he just told me it went online as a fluke, someone "had their wireless internet open". We have something like that I thought but apparently not. We're all connected by cables, though how that can be when one computer's upstairs and the cable's down here, I don't know. Maybe there's a cable connection upstairs.

I need to find some way to figure this out, somehow I want to be able to study and follow discussions about doctrines and the Scripture without sitting here at the computer. I think much better when I'm moving. It would also help to learn how to use the computer properly if I could pace while I read how to do links and trackbacks and HTML and videos and things like that.

My son laughed at the thought of me pacing around the downstairs carrying the huge monitor while studying!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Sovereignty of YHWH

This is an issue that leaves me totally confused. Yes, I know, our God is not the author of confusion. But if I ignored Him totally, I wouldn't be confused at all - ignorant, yes, but not confused. There would be no issues to understand.

When I listen to the mainstream view(s) of christianity, it feels like I'm back in 8th grade or so, studying Greek and Roman mythology. You know, where Zeus got into a fight with this other god and had kids by this goddess and that human woman, then came down in the form of a bull or something to mess with some people he was annoyed with?
But I won't automatically say everything all other religions teach is wrong. They speak according to their understanding, how unlikely is it that there is NO truth at all? Very I think. For those who think everything in that early religious setup was pagan, evil, and false, why do christians still follow their traditions (christmas, easter, sunday sabbath)?


Well, that wasn't even the point of this post, sorry, I got a bit sidetracked. About the sovereignty of the Father, the Almighty, how is He Almighty if His plan can be derailed by some rebel underling? Or by humans who, we are told, are lower than the angels? Does He have no more power over His creation than we human parents have over our children? We may finally "give up" on a wayward child who seems to insist on his own destruction because the only way they can see what they're doing is to have it happen! Some parents realize they have no influence over their almost grown child and have to accept there's nothing they can do but hope they'll see truth before it's too late.
If the mainstream view of christianity that i've been taught is true, that's the position the not-so
mighty Father is in. It leaves him wringing his hands in desperation, wishing with everything in him that we would just listen to his wise advice, broken hearted over all those who turned away, deceived by his archenemy who keeps winning.

THAT'S WHY I HAVE TO RESEARCH MORE ABOUT U.R. If Universal reconciliation in some form is true (I've heard some farfetched doctrines), then Almighty God is well aware and capable of bringing about everything He planned in the first place.

Of course, if He PLANNED for many to be lost so that His few chosen ones had excellent examples of why His way was best, so be it.
Many are called, few are chosen.
Some vessels were created for destruction.

Bet you guys want the scripture references for those, don't you?

Friday, March 14, 2008

Universal Reconciliation? Free Will?

Up to a couple of weeks ago, I participated as an annoying person yelling my contributions from the sidelines of a forum discussion concerning Universal Reconciliation. Apparently this is an idea that has several different forms. Detractors, of course, were accusing all supporters of deliberately trying to subvert the gospel, working for satan, and being false prophets. That may be part of the reason the whole idea attracted me - whenever people get irate and no longer show the "fruit" of love, I start wondering if the most vehement supporters of the status quo are mostly fighting from the flesh.
In this case, the main proponent was arguing and fighting the same way; belittling his opponents, offering to pray that the Father would open their eyes to truth so they would no longer be angry. One of the other "universalists" said what she felt she needed to say, came back a couple of times, then just stayed out of it unless clarification was needed for others reading along that didn't get involved.
I didn't stay in very long, only said a couple of things because I don't know enough about it.


The main problem I see is that scripture DOES teach that all will be reconciled to the Father in the end, the Son offered himself as a sacrifice and covered ALL sin, death and suffering will end.
Why is that a problem?
Scripture also teaches that we have free will, a choice of whether or not we "allow" that payment be made to cover us. It also teaches that there is eternal punishment.

Some people believe that unrepentant sinners will be burning throughout eternity in a fiery hell. Some believe that unrepentant sinners will burn up in hell.
What then is death?
Probably all those who are "in hell" burn up and exist no more. Then AFTERWARD death is destroyed. That wouldn't require anyone to stop being dead, the life is gone, the breath of life that animated their being would be returned to the Creator who gave it.


What about those mentioned in Revelation who are outside the city? The ones who loved a lie, the sorcerers, the idolators, the perverts? Why are they still around?
Someone on the forum I originally referred to gave a timeline that helps with this but I can't keep it straight yet. I have trouble keeping the timeline of American history straight and I have a timeline on my wall! This one may take some thinking. Since I keep my sabbath from the evening of the sixth day through the seventh day (Fri night through until Sat night), this is the perfect time to study.

This Was A Funny Line!

On a blog I read,
the guy wrote that he bought his first guitar and, near the end of the post, he said,

"It's black, looks sexy, and sounds good
(in the hands of a friend, that is.
I can't play anything yet!)".

Great line! Now I'm in a good mood, that post was worth reading, it was encouraging and funny too! I tried to link his blog but it didn't work but it's worth a cut and paste.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Yahshua's Science Project

That's what I usually think life on this earth is; a science project the Son is working on under instruction of the Father. It even hints in scripture what will happen at the end when he "turns us in for his grade".

Thursday, March 6, 2008

What Are We To Make Of Scripture?

There seem to be three accepted ways to think of scripture:
1. Every word is inspired by God and that means there is never a single error
2. There are translation errors but the original is inspired by God and there were no errors
3. The Bible is riddled with errors, inconsistencies, and is nothing more than a collection of
primitive myths

There is another possibility that I can see.
4. Men were inspired by God to write His message. They did. When they wrote it, they wrote it
as they understood it due to their knowledge and view of the world. At times, they wrote word
for word a message they were given and directly stated that's what God said. Other times, they
must have seen a vision that they could only describe in terms they understood themselves,
with whatever scientific or cultural knowledge they had.

Moses for instance, being told about or shown a vision of creation, couldn't describe it in modern English, he didn't know modern English and didn't even know it would exist. We know now that sound waves sent through water at the right frequency creates light. So God spoke and there was light. He didn't give a complicated scientific explanation, he wouldn't have had one.

There are many contradictions in scripture whether we like it or not. But there are contradictions in the laws of physics, aren't there? Classic physics and modern physics describe things that really happen but they don't all apply to the same situations. Macro and micro have different rules, macro - cause is followed by effect, micro - cause is not necessarily followed by effect. Is that merely semantics? No, or the whole field of science wouldn't have ever been in such an uproar about it and confused.
The Bible is the same way, it teaches things that contradict, not only due to circumstance unless you consider your spiritual perspective circumstance. There are so many opposing teachings that in my natural understanding, i would discount much if not all of it. I could see that much of it makes good sense and that some would be great in a perfect world but this isn't that world! However, there is a whole new world of understanding opened when it's seen with a spiritual perspective. The child of a scientist part of me is annoyed by that; it feels like i'm just fooling myself, hypnotizing my thinking or simply using psychobabble to try to make it fit. But because I have seen and experienced the power of God and the power of scripture myself, I know this is different.
I know others have found the same thing because I've read it in their writings, just a statement of awe that lets me know I'm not the only one. There are many who are not just following some formula they've been taught, there are many who are not just trying to meet requirements hoping for this great reward they try hard to believe in. Another plane of reality has been opened up to us (or have we been opened up to another plane?) and life is no longer what it was.
The ridiculous part to me is that it's so hard to maintain that awareness! Intellectually I know it's there, I remember it, I know that in comparison to what I've seen, nothing else matters at all. To realize that there are times I "forget", times I don't choose to stay there staggers me. Why do I ever choose this "dimension" where my motto is often 'Life sucks and then you die' when I could be in another reality where all the pieces fit, I'm secure, satisfied, and totally at peace?
I have seen and known things, if I tell others, they will know (if they know and trust me) there is something worth devoting themselves entirely to finding. But that doesn't make everything I say and do from now on scripture. It doesn't mean I have all wisdom for all circumstances. I believe scripture is living and active because it somehow carries the very spirit of God in it. Jesus knew that. How else could he have agreed to what he did? Others have given their lives for others but that's on the spur of the moment or for a select loved one. Jesus wasn't saving anyone's life that he could see in this physical world; he knew of the other reality(ies?) and that's what made it worth it.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Inspiration of Scripture

It's hard to decide if Paul is meant to be taken as scripture. Yes, he was given a message by the Messiah, the gospel/good news to preach. But are we really supposed to think that every single word he spoke and every bit of advice he gave were specific words directly from the mouth of YHWH Himself?
If the spirit of God gives you a message to tell, does that mean everything you say from that moment on is to be taken as inspired? Does that mean you will never again make a mistake in anything practical or spiritual?
Paul seems to contradict Torah and the Prophets at times. Is this because we don't understand his meaning or did he make a mistake? When he preached, at least once, after people saying 'I follow Paul, I follow Yeshua, I follow Apollo...' he said, "I was determined to know Christ only and him crucified." Is this because people were assuming everything he said had as much authority as that of Messiah himself and he didn't accept that?
Why is it that anyone thinking Paul made a mistake, or was just plain wrong, is considered an evil heretic? Who decided that Paul was another Messiah with perfect wisdom, no longer fallible and human? King David, King Solomon, Jonah, all those "great men" of the Bible were clearly shown to be fallible, sinful - it was their hearts that repented (and often!) that made them great.