Archive for the ‘benefits’ Category

Childhood, divine messengers, the adult ministry of Jesus, and the benefits of Scripture are topics, today, along with additional points on the Savior’s lessons and warnings about repentance found in Luke 13:  1-5 (KJV).  The “Yahoo! Answers” writer using ID “Ganesh” (Level 2 with 533 points, a member since January 4, 2010) posted the following:


Can some one enlighten me about Jesus’s childhood life.?

I want to know where and how Jesus spent his childhood from his age of 1 to 20 years.

THE BATTLE AXE:  Unless You Repent (03/05/2013)—In the incident described from Scripture (Luke 13:  1-5, KJV), Jesus used concerns and questions from the multitude as material for illustrations and parables that would teach the doctrines from GOD.  Seeing the opportunity, Jesus announced that there must be repentance, and the time for repentance is now, rather than later.  He avoided the issue of himself being from the despised region of Galilee, and shunned an obvious chance to promote the truth that, fulfilling the prophecies of Messiah, he had been born in Bethlehem of Judea.  Consider the following points:  (1) No specific actions or sins were identified as having been committed, or as demanding the people’s immediate repentance.  Jesus spoke to encourage the understanding that repentance is change in ones overall lifestyle and person such that one obtains right standing with GOD.  The changes demanded as repentance require divine alterations for the fundamental makeup of mankind, and not merely voluntary change in ones behavior and conduct.  The perfection of mankind pertains to many divine goals.  Thus, the pressure and urgency for mankind’s repentance is not only from damage and loss by sin; they also derive from ongoing sacred operations and divine processes to transform human nature, and are not merely produced by carnal, material and social conditions upon the earth.  (2) When others encounter condemnation, disfavor, obstacles and troubles that you yourself escape this is not an automatic indication of their chastisement by GOD, or of your having divine blessing, favor and reward for your own righteousness.  Rightly understood, divine prerogative and grace should come into view.  (3) While mankind has no place in its own salvation (the same way it had no place in its own creation), to be in right standing with GOD, there are many actions men first must take, and understandings they must acquire on their own behalf by exercising self-will and volition in cooperation with GOD.

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Now his parents went to Jerusalem every year at the feast of the passover.  And when he was twelve years old, they went up to Jerusalem after the custom of the feast.  And when they had fulfilled the days, as they returned, the child Jesus tarried behind in Jerusalem; and Joseph and his mother knew not of it.  But they, supposing him to have been in the company, went a day’s journey; and they sought him among their kinsfolk and acquaintance.  And when they found him not, they turned back again to Jerusalem, seeking him.  And it came to pass, that after three days they found him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the doctors, both hearing them, and asking them questions.  And all that heard him were astonished at his understanding and answers.  And when they saw him, they were amazed:  and his mother said unto him, Son, why hast thou thus dealt with us? behold, thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing.  And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be about my Father’s business?  And they understood not the saying which he spake unto them.  And he went down with them, and came to Nazareth, and was subject unto them:  but his mother kept all these sayings in her heart.  And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man.  (Luke 2:  41-52, King James Version)

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  The Golden Age? (01/10/2013); A Golden Ticket? (11/30/2012); And This Was Good News (12/01/2012); Reading Only The Red Part (11/19/2012); According to the Eternal Purpose (11/20/2012); Why Only Luke (02/22/2012); Returning To GOD (02/23/2012); Girdle 34:  The Life Was The Light (12/19/2011); Binder 6:  The Plan Of This Work (10/03/2011); Missing Years? (02/25/2011); A Reborn Heart (02/26/2011); Jesus Special? (10/01/2010); Coping? (10/03/2010)

Christian believers are often disappointed when they look to the Bible and other ancient writings for information about the childhood of Jesus.  However, they should not be.  The Scriptures are intended as a record of divine activity and process; and, provides a divine point of view using incidents from thousands of lives over the course of thousands of years.  The holy writings are not biographical and historical in their nature; yet, they are an “official record” of sacred acts, divine motives, eternal promises, and spiritual purposes.

The Scriptures provide a revelation of GOD as Creator, and the place of mankind within the fullness of the universe and the Creation of GOD.  As such, the Bible provides details upon such aspects of human experience as (1) establishment of a priesthood in the earth modeled after that in heaven, (2) creation of the “world” (the system put forth by mankind for human survival that includes language, building cities, the rise and fall of kingdoms, and the course of one-world empires), (3) the progressions of divine law and covenant, including instances of judgment against sin, and (4) the fulfillment of divine proclamation, promise and prophecy as response to confession, petition, praise and prayer. 
 
Readers should be pleased that the holy writings emphasize the rich three-and-one-half adult years of ministry performed by Jesus upon the earth along with a vision of his priesthood in the heavens.  The full Gospel describes the inheritance of mankind from the Creation of Adam as son of GOD to the conclusion of judgment and the end of all mortality.  Rightly understood, the absolute excellence of the Scriptures is that they convey to mankind and instill such substance from the person of Jesus as faith, holiness, humility, forgiveness, joy, longsuffering and wrath against sin.

There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, generally speaking, believers are safe to apply the rule, “children should be seen and not heard.”  In material and social terms they “bring little to the table.”  In addition to the limitations of poverty—children have no income from employment or investments; cannot regularly obtain for themselves or others food, clothing shelter and health care; and have little savings—children do not employ critical thinking needed to effectively exercise authority and power.  Emotion, fantasy, and imagination often dominate the mental activity of children.  As a result their behavior is repeatedly impractical, inconsistent, inefficient, irregular and unfocused.  As a stage in human development, childhood should be a time of directed learning, planned growth and preparation, rather than a time of accomplishments, exploits, and resolution for the conflicts, duties and reversals of human relationship.  Because children are held to be marginal and unfit as the most correct models for responsible adults and institutions, and may not always command the full cooperation and respect of those to whom they are sent, their service as divine messengers is regularly exploited, overlooked, opposed, slandered and undermined.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

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     Topics, today, include circumcision, and both natural and spiritual benefits to mankind through the ministry of Jesus.  Also, there is more on contradictions.  A “Yahoo! Answers” writer using the ID “Joshua” (Level 2 with 256  points, a member since October 25, 2012) posted the following:


Jesus has been circumcised, why do Christians not do the same ?

The circumcision is the tradition of patriarchs and prophets since Abraham (pbuh) that God commanded him to do it. Following this commandment, all Jews and Muslims are circumcised.

Jesus, the god of Christians, also has been circumcised under the approval of his mother Virgin Mary which is beyond any reproach.

So why do Christians not do the same ? Why do they not follow their god ?



THE BATTLE AXE:  No Contradictions? (01/15/2013)—Bits from a 5,000-pieced jigsaw puzzle may appear not to belong in a given grouping because of their color or the image they bear, nonetheless their place can be easily discovered as they are fitted together with the pieces whose shape indicate they belong on one of the edges.  The holy writings are a single source for knowledge and understanding among those seeking GOD in Christ.  Not only are the many details and unrecorded truths of Scripture impossible to comprehend without guidance and help from the imparted, indwelling Spirit of GOD, believers cannot correctly embrace the many continuing experiences of sacred truth that come by giving, practice of the sacraments, prayer, unselfish service, and heartfelt worship without the continuing ministry of Jesus as Risen Lord.  Saying this another way:  Just as sworn testimony from multiple eyewitnesses in judgment may not be exactly the same, or agree word for word, yet jurors may account the statements under oath as truth because of agreement and corroboration, believers must examine and assign value to the full dispensation of GOD by focus upon accord.


THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed;  And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.  (John 8:  31-32, KJV)


THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Vows and Covenants? (12/17/2012); Fasting “After the Spirit” (09/19/2012); Binder 30:  The Mark of GOD (10/27/2011); (08/31/2011) Dispatch 21:  The Ally (Sometimes); Annual Feasts (12/29/2010); Conspiracy? (12/08/2010)


     Mature Christian believers typically accept that the divine demand for circumcision goes beyond a cutting of the flesh (see Deuteronomy 30:  6, Jeremiah 4:  4 and Romans 2:  28-29, KJV), and speaks to the content and makeup of ones spirit in relationship to GOD.  The many special truths that emerge by the ministry of Jesus upon the earth include:  Incarnation (the appearance of Almighty GOD in a human body); fulfillment of all divine promises for an heir to Adam that would restore the dominion of mankind over the earth (that had been transferred to the serpent); satisfaction of all demands for oblations and sacrificial blood (e.g., atonement, burnt offerings, thank offerings, trespass and sin offerings); and obedience to all divine law for the natural and spirit worlds that would generate and reinforce faith, miracles, repentance and sacred revelation.  (See Galatians 2:  20 and Romans 6:  4, KJV)

     Just as believers may account themselves as redeemed and saved because of things physically done by Jesus, Christians may also hold that they are now present in heaven before GOD through the resurrected person of Jesus (see Colossians 3:  1, KJV).  This notion (often called “living vicariously”) can be understood easily where we acknowledge that, as fans, we rejoice or are sorrowed as though we ourselves were spoken of when we hear reports about our favorite athletes and celebrities whom we follow (despite being strangers to them) as “family” and  loyal supporters.  It is sufficient that believers are circumcised in the person of Jesus.  Similarly, believers are “credited” as having accomplished 40 days of fasting and prayer in the wilderness, so many in the church do not fast, today; Jesus attended all mandatory covenant feasts required of the eldest, the firstborn and heads of families at both the Tabernacle and the Temple at Jerusalem, so this is discontinued; Jesus correctly participated in, and shared the Passover, so that now Christ is received through the Lord’s Supper (called Communion); and the judgment of our enemies is going forward and will be completed through Jesus Christ, so grudges and revenge are no longer reasonable motives.  (See Colossians 2:  8-13, KJV.)

     There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended. (For example, covenant through Jesus Christ is to secure levels of spiritual reality for mankind, and therefore, goes beyond creating and maintaining a geopolitical nation or a society subject to death, sin and time.  Through Christ there is the end of mortality; and upon the close of divine judgment against sin, only immortal and incorruptible beings will continue in what is called “eternal life.” )  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.


THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

      I have been prompted to think about the law again, its purpose and benefit; and there is more on redemption through the blood of Jesus Christ. A reply was posted at thoughts.com commenting on (12/27/2012) Hellfire and Brimstone Preaching? The writer, “SeasonedBeginner” stated the law was flawed, and only those blind to the freedom and hope brought by Christ in the New Covenant continue to be judgmental. “Justice” has been mercifully replaced with forgiveness. My initial response appears below:


Honor to GOD! The law was not so much flawed as our understanding and acceptance of the law. Thou shalt not steal, thou shalt not kill, thou shalt not commit adultery should still be in effect—and you need not go to Newtown to ask how sound such thinking would be for a righteous God and his people. The law, itself, is a manifestation of divinity, and is not easily embraced using only tools of the flesh such as seeing, hearing, smelling and tasting. The death and resurrection of Christ was not to eliminate divine judgment and wrath against sin; rather, to certify Jesus as a righteous judge. Thanks a lot for sharing your thoughts. Enjoy the rest of the holidays.

THE BATTLE AXE: Purchased With Blood? (12/29/2012)—The ministry of Jesus to mankind is comprehensive, and still is being carried out both upon the earth, and from heaven. While for many, being covered by the blood of Jesus signifies atonement, or remission and propitiation for sins, rather than redemption, the blood of Jesus overspreads all the levels of divine process and sacred purpose. Included are birth, death, judgment, promise, prophecy, and sanctification. Although believers speak of experiencing GOD through divine history, infrequent episodes, and discrete events, the operations of GOD are all eternal, inseparable, open-ended, and progressive. Thus, redemption cannot be separated from salvation, and the two equally entail cleansing, forgiveness, rebirth, repentance, and sacrifice.

THE GOLDEN ARROW: I have not departed from thy judgments: for thou hast taught me. My tongue shall speak of thy word: for all thy commandments are righteousness. Let thine hand help me; for I have chosen thy precepts. I have longed for thy salvation, O LORD; and thy law is my delight. Let my soul live, and it shall praise thee; and let thy judgments help me. I have gone astray like a lost sheep; seek thy servant; for I do not forget thy commandments. (Psalms 119: 172-176, KJV)

THE DOUBLE DAGGER: Vows and Covenants? (12/17/2012); Christians Who Ignore GOD’s Laws (10/25/2012); The Crux of the Matter (10/26/2012); Violence In The Bible (02/26/2012); Why Confess Before Priest (02/27/2012); Trouble For The Good (01/15/2012); Chain Of Command (01/16/2012); Free From Law? (11/03/2010); Love a Choice? (11/04/2010)

      The law of GOD has never been a weapon against goodness, love, obedience, respect, or truth; yet, many complain against the law as an attack upon “freedom”; an unnecessary burden of obligation; an unholy instrument that generates despair, fear, shame and terror; and an obstacle to the full integrity and legitimacy of created beings and living creatures.

      The divine purposes of law include creating and maintaining order among a broad and diverse assembly of sentient beings that possess self-will. Just as the law is to reveal and make known the will of Almighty GOD, the law is to make known and visible an immaterial and unseen presence that is sin. For most, knowledge of the law is by faith, rather than by detailed and exacting study of every ordinance or statute. The benefits and blessing of law are a foundation for the security of the universe, for the law fosters and imparts balance, comfort, continuity, joy, hope, peace, stability, strength, wisdom, and eternal life.

      In the kingdom of GOD, punishment and death are not the outcomes of obeying law, performing sacred duty, sharing love, or speaking holy truth; and the covenant law provided to establish a righteous nation in the earth was not given with an intent to increase human misery. The damage and threat that results from sin was first identified among the holy angels. When divine law was extended to mankind upon the earth, this was in the nature of admonition, restoration, and salvation. All law is not spoken in a language of prohibition (thou shalt not); and, rightly understood, it is law that commands the existence of all benefit. Law is a form of Light, and there is no flaw in light or in the Light-Giver. Only those who seek to abide in darkness fear and hate the light.

      There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended. (For example, sin does not exist as a being or thing created by GOD. Anguish, death, and pain absolutely must appear as alarms against sin, and there must be knowledge that works to limit the damage that comes by sin. The overwhelming threat posed by sin cannot be realized without spiritual power, divine instruction, and immediate consequences in living experience. Sin opposes the existence of divine law, of divine person, and of divine Creation.) Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful. Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

      Focus today is upon how much of the Bible a believer must accept; and there is more on the importance of how we are first introduced to Christ. The “Yahoo! Answers” writer using the ID “Mike M”(Level 1 with 101 points, a member since June 21, 2008) posted the following:

Do you have to believe everything in the Bible to get into heaven?

I know you have to believe in God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit, but what does the Bible say about getting into heaven, when it’s talking about the Bible itself? Does one have to believe and like everything in the Bible?

THE BATTLE AXE: Unexceptional Beginnings (11/22/2012)—Many believers are misdirected for a great while when first coming to Jesus, because they think that salvation is through a social process where Christ is in a role of an estranged relative, a returning family member, or even as a friend-of-a-friend. Others get caught up in emotional and mental traps by pursuing argument, debate and intellectual competitions. The full extent of spiritual process whereby the Holy Spirit installs divine substance and benefit (e.g., confidence, faith, sacred knowledge, repentance, trust, truth, and godly vision) is going forward silently and unseen. When believers begin to arrive at maturity and greater perfection, they often realize that GOD had been working within them all their lives and long before they made any conscious decision to change their ways because of sin, or seek new life by organized religion. Those who reject the church because they fear losing their freedom as individuals, like those who deny the Bible or insist they can take responsibility for their own inner development, are like youngsters who spend long hours at practice shooting hoops or pitching the baseball, and refuse to play in the context of a team or organized league. They never really find out how great their mistake is until they find themselves envying others with less skill who nonetheless have gained clear benefit.

THE GOLDEN ARROW: And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified. (Acts 20: 32, King James Version)

THE DOUBLE DAGGER: Before the Fruit? (11/10/2012); Why “Mysterious” (11/11/2012); Attending Church? (11/12/2012); A Holy Kiss? (11/13/2012); Does Everyone Go To Heaven? (10/28/2012); Magick and Prayer? (10/29/2012); Why No Answer? (08/25/2012); To Be or Not To Be? (08/26/2012)

      Among other things, the Bible has special importance for Christian believers because (1) answers to many of their most frequent and necessary questions are found there; (2) commandments from GOD and law to direct the behavior and conduct of believers in various relationships (e.g., business partnership, courtship, friendship, governance, marriage, parenting) are recorded there; (3) examples from the lives of earlier believers are documented there to provide comfort, encouragement and instruction; and (4) spirit substance is conveyed from the Scriptures that amplifies and nourishes the imparted, indwelling spirit residing within the believer.

      The value of the Bible is not the same for believers and unbelievers. Just as two people may be given invitation to a concert, and the one who accepts has a very different experience than the one who declines, those who rightly respect the Bible as a way to communicate about, to and with GOD have a very different spiritual awareness, and experience salvation with a different consciousness of fulfillment and satisfaction. Those in the “cheap seats” and “nosebleed” sections get to see the same presentation as those in the sky-box and those having an “all-access pass”, yet, the richness of their insights and memories and will not be the same.

      The Bible presents an “official” record of divine events whereby GOD, who is entirely made-up of spirit, has been made known and visible to created beings and living creatures in the realms of both earth and heaven. In addition to the Gospel that proclaims the good news of recovery for humankind from sin, the holy writings detail divine processes, sacred purposes, and godly mechanisms that generate life. Included are birth, covenant, death, family, forgiveness, judgment, priesthood, re-birth, repentance, revelation, and sanctification.

      There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended. (For example, getting to heaven is more a matter of what you are, not what you do. Mankind must be changed and transformed, because the endowment of divinity from GOD that was given in Creation has been corrupted and reduced by sin. Through the sacrificial death of Jesus, atonement has been provided, and the Holy Spirit is sent to obedient believers supplying them with a new infusion of divine nature. The same spirit content that makes GOD who he is, must make believers who they are.) Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful. Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC