Thursday, October 23, 2008

"Creation" of Evil

I just came across a post I had commented on a while ago and lost (I've finally started writing down where I comment).
On I left a comment on a post where the writer claimed God did not create evil. When I went back to look, he had responded that "We can quote the Bible out of context to support whatever positions we have but God did not originally create evil".
I'm totally offended. I did no such thing and I'm offended that I am accused of it. Phrased that way makes it an accusation as if I'm deliberately trying to vilify our Heavenly Father! Even if he had said, "That's out of context, it's really like this..." it would have been better. I DO want to read the rest of his post, that just stopped me cold for a bit! The poster says God did NOT originally create evil but scripture specifically says He did. It's a quote directly from Him through Isaiah.

When I first found those verses I quoted there on Did God Create Evil?, I was surprised and had to totally rethink what "evil" is.
1 Samuel 16:14 "..and an evil spirit from YHWH tormented him."
Judges 9:23 God sent an evil spirit..
Then there's Isaiah 45:7 which says, "I form the light and create darkness, I make peace and create evil. I, YHWH, do all these things."
Some translations have "calamity" or "disaster" in Isaiah. That's not what I ever considered "evil" before; I always thought it was an active and tangible force that stands against YHWH. So what does that mean for the idea that there is an evil spirit world? What is an evil, tormenting spirit? Especially one FROM YHWH?
I've also read that evil is man's own nature which is selfishness and wanting our own way instead of the way of righteousness that comes from the Holy, the nature we are intended to have.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Natural Outflow

Today I was thinking about good works.
We don't seek out good things to do, doing good works should be our natural inclination from the spirit in us. If we're not "finding" things to do, we need to seek a closer relationship with the one who fills us with the spirit that good works flow from. Not recognizing what's next, what's needed, what's good and righteous means we're missing something very important. What's missing isn't "ideas", it's intimacy with the Holy One. Jesus had goodness, "good works", flowing from him everywhere he went. He's our model but not that we should only copy what he did - we can have what he had! A relationship with the Father, the spirit flowing in and through and from us. That's where true good works come from. They will flow from us because of him.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

How Do I Answer Her?

My friend called tonight, she returned from a funeral and was upset about a few things. One is that the pastor there made it clear that the deceased was gone from us but had the hope of the resurrection. My friend is upset that the pastor doesn't believe we are already immortal and death is just escaping from this life so we can immediately "be in heaven" with Jesus.
What could I say? I don't believe that either.
There is only one verse in scripture I can think of that sounds as if that's the case. Maybe two. Overall, there are many, many that say the dead are dead, the dead know nothing, we await the promised resurrection, eternal life is a gift for believers only, etc.
The other is where the kingdom is - in heaven or on earth. I can't give any worthwhile discussion on that, I just can't tell.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Why Does The "Proof" Go Both Ways?

Word Studies drive me crazy! The evidence, the proof, and the truth of the matter always seems to depend on the agenda the "experts" are pushing. Linguists, bible scholars, historians - you can find groups of experts that agree but then another group of the varied professions can give evidence to prove the exact opposite! Is the evidence truly so confusing and inconclusive?

Thursday, October 2, 2008

We All Win

We get more out of an action (that seems cowardly to others) than they can imagine. It reminds me of this:

Little boy angry that he has to take a nap, tries to be the boss and demand that YOU have to take a nap too! You "submit to authority" and take a nap. He's feeling all cocky and dominant and thinks he 'won'. What do you think?

Way Better Than It Sounds!

To correlate the phrase I was supposed to be discussing with the rest of the last post - Religion is the opiate of the masses - I say 'religion' may well be but spiritual truth isn't. When understood in practical terms, "be content" and "submit yourself to authority" seems to be a way to control groups of people. Maybe it is.

What the people who can't stand the thought of it and the people who are thrilled to take advantage of these principles don't understand is that those who follow them get way more out of it than others can know. (For years, the whole idea bugged me horribly and I traitorously, secretly believed it was a scam in a way. I don't blame myself anymore for that though, I only felt guilty because I was taught that any such thoughts were blasphemy.) How could I know the truth of the instructions if God didn't reveal it to me? All I could do was see it with my unchanged mind - in the natural world, it IS a bad idea and not a good survival skill.
Then I thought it was merely good instruction for a civilization to be run, to keep people in control. Perhaps, but who wants to be the controlled when the controllers are selfish and greedy, not looking out for the good of all?

It took God showing me the irrelevance of many things in this life before I could take it for what it is.
Being content IS practical, it keeps one from ruining his health and mental state railing against circumstances. I don't think it's possible without the spirit doing it though when things get bad. Being content doesn't negate taking advantage of opportunities that come one's way. It may be easier to recognize them when one isn't fuming at life.
Overall though, I don't think it's even that; it's knowing that a greater power is in charge. I don't believe the word "faith" means believing with no evidence. Isn't the word actually "faithfulness"? And isn't one faithful to one you know you can trust because they've SHOWN they are worth your trust?