Is it just me or is the world in the darkness? The other night here in El Paso we had a lunar eclipse. We got in the way of the sun and the moon the other night and the light reflecting from the moon slowly went to darkness. Through the whole event a slight ring of light pointed out the event or we would have never noticed it.
There is no question that it is a great time to be analyzing the Book of Revelations and casting forth stones and judgements. The difference between good news and fake news is blurrier than ever before. So what do I do?
“The decision of GOD is to punish the ‘guilty’. It says so in (such and such), (verse such and such) by GOD.” There you have it. A quick synopses of the book and I have said my piece.
There are those, however, who believe a bit differently. “Shine your light in the darkness. Hide it under a bushel, NO….” We are the ring around a hidden moon. No matter the darkness in the world there are those whose choice is to shine a light. Not a judgement, a light. I have not been charged with the future of any human or other animal on the face of the Earth. I have never been consulted by GOD concerning anyone. It is not my call.
That evil attitudes exist does not come as a surprise. That many choose Success AT ANother’s expense is not news, it is a mantra. My responsibility is to shine a light about my little corner of the world. It doesn’t seem to result in too many ‘hits’, ‘clicks’ or likes. I am not a soldier in a vast Christian Army. I am just a guy. The key is to persevere. The people who stumble into my light during my journey have not done so because of me. They have done so because of a power I can not understand and they probably can not understand either. As for me and my house, we shall serve the Lord.
There seem to be so many requirements of us Christians for us to be ‘Forgiven’. Often the requirements manifest themselves in the commentary of pastors and the prophets that it can overwhelm us. It creates such a monstrous anxiety to bear the burden of our humanity that doubt becomes the driving force versus a very special force that comes from within.
One of the two thieves who hung from crosses in the company of Jesus prompted Jesus to use his “power” to save all three. The second thief, in all honesty, said that “they” were being punished for things that they had done that were knowingly wrong and could have been avoided by choices. Jesus, on the other hand, had done nothing to deserve what he was receiving. In addition ‘he’ asked Jesus to remember him in heaven. Jesus response was that this person’s request would not only be observed, but that “today you will be with me in “Paradise”. The Gospel is not “fake news” but GREAT News and GOOD NEWS.
To the crowd that followed Jesus’ journey to the cross and made fun of Him and chastised Him, Jesus had a simple prayer. “Father forgive them, for they Know NOT what they do….” and then “Into thy hands I commend my SPIRIT.”
The mockers, the bullies, and the Judges have instincts that are driven by their instinctive humanity. They are products of the human culture. Win at all costs. “Success AT ANothers expense”. Jesus recognized this and had a unique foresight to put the conflicts of the spirit vs the human instinct into a perspective to be approached by LOVE vs culture. “Many will come in my name and will lead even the elect astray.” Jesus’ example should not be reflected of a position of power, but rather an example of the kingdom of the spirit. Many who fly the flag of Christianity do so from a political perspective, Jesus did it from a cross. Your spiritual journey may win no human conflicts, but your spiritual journey will stand the test of eternal life.
Jesus is your advocate. Jesus walked the walk, talked the talk, and took the hits. And yet Jesus has stood the test of time and the others are names that need to be looked up to be remembered. Do not underestimate the power of LOVE to reconcile differences. Do not underestimate the power of LOVE to discover inner peace and tranquility. And do not believe in coincidence. GOD is active, GOD provides, GOD teaches, and GOD pays attention. And GOD asks. GOD asks for your help. Life is different once we can say “What can I do?” All of the things that tempt you, tempted Jesus. “Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil…”
“Father Forgive Them, they know NOT what they do..”
Do not beat yourself up for being human, seek out the spirit within you and wake up to a new day. You HAVE BEEN forgiven, when you accept it for yourself…
For Whom the Bell Tolls………
So its like this….. I used to start many of my sermons this way…
We seem to be narrowing down the ‘great again’ reference point. I am confused by it.
When were we free from illegal immigration?
1491 (not counting the Vikings from Norway.) That was quite some time ago.
Which group has brought the most productive people (not necessarily citizens, few blacks were legal citizens, all of the English were not initially, and the Carolina’s were reserved for the criminally inclined illegal immigrants.
Perhaps it was the Irish.
The Germans (We fought two world wars against the Germans).
The French? They sold us much of the west way over priced.
The Spanish. We took a big part of the Southwest from them and now whine about the people that came with it.
The Italians. Criminally inclined? Mafioso? Fought them in World War II also.
The Middle Easterns? They are comprised of some of our most astute money lenders and investment contributors, as well as oil suppliers. They also didn’t contribute much more than that plus a native Jewish carpenter that has become the centerpiece of our primary religion that we so staunchly protect that we have forgotten His ascribed teaching of Love One Another. (Leading by the example of dying on a cross from a middle Eastern native, doesn’t hold much weight in the new “Great Again” forum of one of our more prominent “Christians” and associated political factions.) I must be missing something.
The Nationwide railroad system was built by orientals, legal and illegal. And we fought wars against them also..
Whose children stayed or were deported with their parents? None that I have read much about until we have since decided to be “Great”.
Who was Tom Sawyer?
Doesn’t “Trump” mean to Succeed AT ANother’s expense?
“Things that make you say hmmmmmmm.”
The Last Revelation
Always remember as you read, this site is called Unorthodox Christianity.
As I have once again perused the Book of Revelation in my New Jerusalem Bible, I have many questions with The Christian Book of The Revelation of John. I believe it is not necessarily all about a meeting with the GOD to which Jesus ascribes himself. I believe some of the revelation is more about the meetings of the Anti – Christs who appear as who John interprets as GOD to John of 1,500+ years ago.
The Anti-Christs are not a solitary Human, the Anti-Christs are of an ideology that is adhered to by human beings and an original physical element that Darwin called ‘survival of the fittest’. It is an inherent instinct. In his letters to the seven Churches in Revelation the position of following SATAN (who I consider to be an anagram for Success AT AN..other’s – expense, and it’s adherents living within the chosen cities, is one to be avoided and that their behavior ‘adulterates’ the position of Jesus which is to love one another ‘On Earth As It Is in Heaven’. The Revelation goes on to present a vengeful GOD that is inconsistent with teachings of Jesus. I also recall a comment from the cross, “Forgive Them Father, they know not what they do.” I see Jesus as the lawyer on our behalf, not a purveyor of punishment.
I also follow a GOD, as referred to as “GOD is LOVE”, who, I do not believe requires Humans to bow down to GOD for GOD’s satisfaction. Free will and Grace seem foundational to Jesus. Why would a “GOD is LOVE” GOD take a creation of GOD’s own and destroy it as punishment for what GOD created in the first place. What I see here in Revelations is a Human being driven by a ‘survival of the fittest’ instinct as the human norm, interpreting a vision of a future event from a lifetime of examples of human instinct and education 1,500+ years ago. This human attitude at work is the way it has been since the beginning of time (survival of the fittest). To have this instinct being accepted by and manifested by GOD for GOD’s own ‘personal’ positioning just doesn’t fit. To me it seems against the teachings of a Jesus that I try and adhere to. The commentary ascribed to ‘GOD’ seems more to be directed by a Human being whose personal position in the room could be equated to GOD (in GOD’s own environment), and interpreted as ‘GOD’ to someone unfamiliar with the life and times of future events. The vision I present below shares behavior and ideas, and actions, with logical conclusions that are represented in the vision of John. The vision is so far beyond the realm of John’s human interpretation that I can see this great counsel meeting being interpreted as originating with GOD rather than the result of human activity centuries down the road done to humans by other humans. GOD forcing people to “LOVE” GOD is inconsistent with the meaning of “LOVE” and our small planet is but a spec in the creation of GOD for so much attention from GOD beyond the obvious warning that this Revelation provides.
Now Humans trying to force people to bow down and worship them, and respect them through threats and armies, kiss the ring on my finger and such, this I have seen through out history. Figuring that this would be GOD’s norm also is understandable as the old testament presents a GOD that humans can relate to for ‘Wait until your Father gets home” was never presented to me as a social positive. The tribal philosophy of engagement is not unique on Earth, it is what we call history.
The meeting that is represented to be in Heaven, and referred back to often in the narrative, appears to me to be a meeting of the HUMAN Adherents to the attitude of SUCCESS AT ALL COSTS being held in a room that John, with his background, could only image as having to be in Heaven because of it’s opulence. There is now and always has been such opulence in the hands of a small percentage of the world’s population. At this point in the time of mankind the opulence is well beyond the grasp of John. The plagues are not plagues of GOD, the figure represented as the GOD of all creation is actually ‘their (the humans) GOD, MONEY, the measurement of Power and Success on EARTH. A plague brought on by dumping chemical waste in what used to be clean water because it is cheaper does not have to come from GOD. Humans have been doing this for centuries. Very similar to Jesus’ attack on the Pharisees in the Temple, the setting I interpret as very representative of the Priests in the Temple at that time would be a similar event today. What is occurring in Revelations at our time in history, is being written by someone without our perspective and knowledge of the thousands of years of history since John’s Revelation.
Picture any Congress in the world, or a Parliament, the government meetings held in any nation. Picture a War Room Table surrounded by the keepers of the Power. OR…….
Better yet, Image a description of a company meeting to discuss how to maintain the profits of a war, without the war. A bullet, a missile, a fighter jet, an aircraft carrier, makes no money until used. An artillery device makes no money until the artillery, be it cannonballs, or bows and arrows, or swords and knives are replaced. Even in the times of the John of Revelations, these meetings were held in Kings Courts, Pharisees groups, Ceaser’s offices, even the manufacturing facilities of the Armor supplier for the Roman Army or the ship builders of the Vikings. Who traded what for arms and who made the money? Somewhere, someone, has to be discussing how to keep war flowing in abundance. Without it jobs are lost, profits do not exist, and the power is sacrificed. Add to that a religious philosophy of “Love One Another”, and the preference of a terrorist opponent would be a better alternative to the balance sheet than a world of peace. (And so it was in Jesus’ day.)
The balance sheet of peace is considered to be very small to businesses and investors now used to the profits of war.
Looking at how our world has advanced technologically in 2,000 years, we no longer require GOD to have stars (missiles) fall on the Earth. Hiroshima was a huge ball of smoke coming from the abyss. A submarine launched missile can easily be a fire breathing beast coming from the ocean and flying through a sky to someone who has never seen either. The conflict between two fighter jets in the sky can be angels attacking one another on the opposite side of their personal beliefs. None of this requires GOD’s wrath to produce. Mankind, following it’s own path, is headed there without the help of GOD. And we are doing that now.
And yet, 2,000 years ago, GOD sends a warning for us to pay attention to today. And we have paid no attention. It is too easy to blame all this on GOD and not accept the responsibilities ourselves. The evening news is a mix of GOD (miracle) and human events. We have to be careful not to confuse the two. We have an interesting, and perhaps short, future ahead of us if we fail to recognize what we have done and are doing.
Go ahead, pick your GOD, assign a name to your GOD. You will probably follow it with all your heart. Does your GOD move you toward peace with your GOD and fellow man? Or do you move toward assertion, power, and success at the expense of others? Which church was John writing to? Yours? Theirs?
The warnings have existed for years. They were given to you a thousand years ago and as recently as today. The price to be paid has also increased substantially. What price are you willing to pay?
Just some thoughts from a simple guy. dw 6-21-17