Monday, May 30, 2011

The Gospel of Faith???

Faith is "to be persuaded". Faith in Christ is to be persuaded of the Good News about His Grace towards you. That is what saves you... placing your faith in His Grace (Rom 4:16... "Therefore it is of faith that it may be according to grace.."), That's being saved by Grace through Faith is (Eph 2:8).
Many place their faith in "Faith" (But, its NOT the "gospel of FAITH" that saves us - as no such thing exists - but it is the Gospel of GRACE! (Act 20:24).
Many place their faith in their own Good works or Service towards God.
Many "are persuaded" (have directed their faith towards) attending a weekly religious Ritual - or systematic church routine as a means unto Salvation.....
But only being Persuaded, or having your Faith aimed towards His Grace, as your means unto Salvation will suffice.
We all have the measure of faith (even non-Believers have the ability to be fully persuaded in all sorts of things) - even devils do (Jam 2:19), But only by placing that Faith in His Grace towards you - through the Cross and Resurrection, will you be set free to bear His fruit and enjoy your Union with Him.

The Father gave us His Life as a Gift because He loves us, Not as something we need to still somehow attain via Principles and '4-step' Formula's. Faith is NOT a formula, It is a response to His Love and it comes Naturally Effortlessly. If Faith is something we feel WE need to "perfect" or "work-up" to get "just right" in order to get a Response from God, then we have strayed from our Persuasion of Grace. Faith = Trust, and Trust = Rest. A Believer in Christ is someone who Trusts and therefore Rests in Fathers Love for them. They feel NO need to earn or maintain His affections because they are fully persuaded, via the Cross, that His love is perfect and unchanging.

Teachings about Faith and Gifts and so called "Kingdom Principles" may be helpful, but they are NOT the GOSPEL. Grace is the Good News (Gospel). And it is GRACE (not Faith) that is the power of God unto Salvation. Everyone who believes that Gods GRACE towards man is the Good News has therefore placed their Faith in His Grace and can Now experience Union with Him. Now that you are experiencing New Covenant Salvation, you have no need for lifeless Principles and Formulas because He leads you. His Spirit and your spirit have been made One and are in Union (Ezek 36)..... He has done it, He has joined the two together and created one new man - that is completely New and has never existed before - and what God has Joined together let NO Man separate.
Dont be fooled now, into believing "Faith" to be the Gospel....or any other Doctrine that primarily focuses on you or dictates what your response to Grace MUST now be.

The Complete work of Jesus - Life, death, burial and ressurection - when embraced, is intoxicatingly Good News that breeds Contentment/peace, and Joy. No other "gospel" will lead to this, hence Paul's querie to those who had fallen from Grace to go back to living by Principles.... "Who has stolen your Joy?"
Well meaning brothers and sisters will unwittingly lead you away from Grace, but with all of His strength, we can make every effort to stay in the Rest that He died to freely give us. He lives in us and delights to lead us into all truth. Lets trust Him. Lets Feast on His unceasing Love for all of us!


Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Religion or Relationship?

"Most of Paul’s letters were written because even the earliest believers found themselves trading relationship for religion. Instead of learning to live in the security of his love they would go back to the traditions, creeds, disciplines and laws as an attempt to earn it themselves. He reminded them over and over again, that God’s love would take them further than their own efforts and achievements ever would. But his words often fell on deaf ears then, as they have in generations since....

...Religion offers us the illusion of earning acceptance, but it is only a cheap substitute for the reality of life in him. God’s desire is to engage us in a life-changing relationship. He knew the ‘life-changing’ would come only out of the relationship. Thus he demonstrated his love for us before we did anything to make ourselves worthy of it. By doing so, he wanted us to stop trying to earn it and just live in light of it." Exerpt from "He loves me"

Sometimes we get consumed and obsessed with making the cogs of our religion grind on, regardless of any cost or lives at stake. How often in days gone by have well meaning brothers and sisters sacrificed time with, and needs of: spouses, children, friends or anything or anyone else that would cross the tracks of the religious machine they were obsessed with maintaining....Often completely ignorant of the decaying reality of those closest to them.

Often what started off as a voluntary act of Love, in serving people in a local community, gets transposed onto the individual as their identity from the rest of the congreagtion. The praise and acceptance of those being served quickly takes the 1st place from the Love of God that led them to serve in the first place. Soon enough, because thier actions are not primarily fueled by God's Love, but rather the need to keep people happy (and the value they gain from man fro their service), they find themselves traped and tied into a religious system that 'must keep' grinding on, no matter how many get chwed up and spat out along the way. When one burns out, they are quickly and efficiently replaced - given the praises as the next best thing, and the deathly cycle begings all over again.

How many have felt guilty for "missing a church meeting" because they had a "role to play" to ensure the show went on? How many have felt terrible for "taking a gap" or a family weekend away because they knew that their "church" relied on them?... (perhaps more than their own family!?) How many will "no qusetions asked" prioritize the religious needs of a local church over their own family? How many cant say "No" to church leaders because of a fear of being rejected by them, or have that leaders opinion of them "tainted" with regard to commitment? - But will say "No" to their family events or needs at the drop of a hat to keep local church leaders happy.

All of this comitment may seem noble from the outside, and may even earn one an esteemed place of leadership and honour, but at what cost?....burnt out marraige relationships?.... Children growing up hating "the church" or "God" for messing up thier families. Are we serving Jesus by bowing and scraping to Religious Machine that only recipicates affection and benefits to those from whom it can benefit from?
I'm all for serving our local church communities! But Jesus must be the One who leads us to do so, and when that time is up, and He leads us to give His attention elsewhere, there must be the freedom to do so - even if there is not a replacement for your vacancy!! We CAN TRUST Jesus to build His Church. This happens when we do what He leads us to do - weather its starting something or ending something. Jesus leads us as He sees fit - we can TRUST that!
Religion loves to delay what Jesus has led you to do because your obedience to it damages Satans kingdom. Satan often uses well intentioned brother and sisters to encourage Delaying the thing that Jesus has laid on your heart to do.

If you are stuck in a religious machine with seemingly no way out without the threat of "all the wheels falling off", the best advise I can give you is: Just do what Jesus leads you to do. He is big enough to deal with the "fall-out" and loves every step of journying with you as you grow and learn to trust him, instead of trying to make our own plans.
You - despite others opinions - are not responsible to keep the Religios Cogs turning if you feel your time it up, in serving where you are serving. Jesus will build His Church. Lets Trust Him! Jesus has given us Himself and delights in our undivided affection and has wooed us through His love act on the Cross....

YOU, are far more important to Him than - your kids ministry commitment, your church band dedication, your polished theology, your evangelism programs, your FB and internet blogs, your daily self crucifiction, your "church covering", your prayer meeting or home group attendance, or anything else we sometimes deem as the be-all and end-all of what being a son or daughter is all about. He loves you and wants you to Trust Him to lead you into greater Freedom.

Love to you all!!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Mystical Union

The term "Mystical Union" must be one of the most controversial phrases, hated (or rather, feared) by many congregation leaders. The understanding of it shines a very clear Gospel coloured light on most of what our main steam churches have believed to be the gospel, and has found our mainstream reformed theology drasticly wanting!
The understanding of our Union with Abba brings us to a dramatic crossroads: Either we Believe it and walk away from years of accepted theology, be called off as a fringe heretic, ignored and outcast - but at the same time, walk into True Freedom that Jesus died to bring. OR, we can reject it and continue to live in a lifeless, religiously obligated form of godliness -but deny it's power. We can continue accepting and explaining away our unbiblical view of the gospel as "a paradox" because outside of changing what we believe about the cross, "a paradox" is the only to make sense of what we read and what we experience. Its a crying shame I tell you!

Many who have examined the Gospel and seen the huge difference between it and what they have called "the gospel" all along wont budge off their theological fence in fear of others opinion. To them I say, "thats fine - Jesus still absolutely loves you!. Keep feasting on the Gospel until you simply cant stay on that fence anymore.

Below is a preach that may answer many questions regarding the finished work and the so-called "paradox" that Religion forces its children to live under.

Loads of love to you.