Archive for the ‘racism’ Category

     Today’s post addresses the lessons and warnings from Jesus when asked about a recent slaughter of Hebrews by the Romans, and an accident resulting in more than a dozen deaths that was commonly known to have occurred nearby.  The “Yahoo! Answers” Top Contributor using ID “Bruce” (Level 7 with 92,590 points, a member since August 12, 2007) posted the following:


What did Jesus mean about tragic deaths by saying, “Unless you repent, you will all likewise perish”?

Luke 13:Now on the same occasion there were some present who reported to Him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mixed with their sacrifices. 2 And Jesus said to them, “Do you suppose that these Galileans were greater sinners than all other Galileans because they suffered this fate? 3 I tell you, no, but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. 4 Or do you suppose that those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them were worse culprits than all the men who live in Jerusalem? 5 I tell you, no, but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.”


THE BATTLE AXE:  Our Need for a Son (03/04/2013)—A need for knowledge, relationship and right standing with GOD exits within all created beings and living creatures as an aspect of their makeup and substance that pertains to their completeness, perfection and quality as the handiwork of GOD.  By the revelation of himself through flesh in the person of Jesus Christ, the son of GOD from heaven, GOD has further prepared and transformed human awareness so that mankind may eventually display aspects of divine being that include incorruption and immortality.  While the existence of GOD does not result from any thing that has been created, the realms of existence (both heaven and earth) and all they contain are useful (yet unnecessary) as artifacts of divine existence that also make known the extent and continuing operation of divine power, presence and sacred purpose.  (See Psalms 19:  1-6, Revelation 21:  1-8 and Revelation 22:  1-5, King James Version.)


THE GOLDEN ARROW:  The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.  But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.  Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness,  Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat?  Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.  Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless.  (2nd Peter 3:  9-14, King James Version)


THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  The Golden Age? (01/10/2013); Translation, Please… (01/11/2013); The Price of Humanity? (12/13/2012); Remembering the Holocaust (12/14/2012); According to the Eternal Purpose (11/20/2012); Henceforth, Of This Fruit (11/21/2012); Before the Fruit? (11/10/2012); The Priesthood of Kings (10/17/2012); Childlike Faith (10/18/2012); Life and Death (09/26/2012); Mob Rule and Violence (09/27/2012); The Common Danger (01/02/2013); Put Every Man His Sword By His Side (01/01/2013); Tragedy? (10/23/2010)


Bruce, may I share a few points that should be helpful?  The many lessons taught by the account from Saint Luke include warnings against those who believe in GOD for salvation becoming complacent, presumptuous, sedentary, and self-satisfied.  For the most correct understanding, a believer should be aware of various issues having influence at that time:

(1) Divisions among the people of Jesus’ day included longstanding ethnic arrogance and racism displayed as enmity between the Jews (i.e., those from the Southern tribes of Judah and Benjamin) and those of the ten tribes to the North that included Galilee.  The separation was not merely on political lines that came by the revolt against the house of David through the person of Rehoboam, son of Solomon.  Following dissolution of the Unified Kingdom, there were many efforts to replace Jerusalem as the center for observances and worship, including the establishment in the North of worship for the Golden Calf from Egypt.

(2) That men should be slaughtered while worshipping GOD was thought to indict their worship (i.e.,  could be taken as evidence that their beliefs were false and their practices idolatrous), cast a light of contradiction, and endorsed spiritual confusion regarding divine judgment, salvation, and other sacred operations of GOD.  Unlike anger and emotions that come and go or frequently shift, the wrath of GOD against sin must be understood as a continuous and permanent aspect of divinity that makes GOD who he is in relationship with all Creation.  Notwithstanding this, the divine provisions for atonement and propitiation of sins also emerge from eternal, unchanging aspects of divinity.

(3) GOD was identified as a direct cause and active agent in all the collective life experience of the covenant people(s).  Birth, death, inheritance, sickness and war were all regularly “explained” as actions by GOD independent of all input from mankind.  The accountability of mankind was thought to go no further than counsels, desires, petitions and prayers.  More than this, human condemnation was seen the result of bad behavior, poor choices and faulty decision making.  Jesus demonstrated that human substance (i.e., such elements as faith, holiness and Spirit) is correctly the primary element determining the life conditions and experience of mankind as well as the duration of human existence.

(4) The purpose of death as the tool of GOD was widely understood as only for the destruction of sinners and the punishment of sin.  Endorsing those teachings that spoke to the completion of human mortality and divine resurrection for the dead, Jesus manifested the use of death to complete judgment and establish eternal life through mechanisms of rebirth and resurrection.  Rather than concern for the recent tragedies, Jesus warned the multitude to have concern for the second death, the lake of fire and the total termination of ones existence.

There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, emotionalism, excitement and sensationalism are often our focus and response to events in the flesh.  Our salvation may be rightly embraced only where we yield to the imparted, indwelling Spirit from GOD.  Repentance for sins is not the product of human cravings, feelings, regrets, thoughts and self-will so much as by operation of the Holy Spirit.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

Advertisements

      That the Gospel, being rejected by the Jews, should be preached among the Gentiles is the topic, today, along with more on salvation by reading the Scriptures. As has occurred on a number of occasions, before I could complete my response to the person who posed the question, the identifying information was deleted by “Yahoo! Answers.” Even so, I may share what was posted by the writer using ID “Johnny” (Level 1 with 199 points, a member since November ?, 2012) as having been the following:

What did Paul mean “From now on I will go to the Gentiles.”?

And what is with all this Jewish pride chosen people crap?

THE BATTLE AXE: The Golden Ticket? (11/30/2012)—There is no instant and automatic access, simple formula, or golden ticket a person may use to gain a place in heaven. For believers in GOD through Jesus Christ, achieving a celestial home is accomplished as a peculiar “work” of dependence upon divine grace, of faith, and of daily living that displays uninterrupted righteousness. Believers must cooperate with the finished work for salvation that has been performed through the birth, life, ministry, death, resurrection, ascension, and eternal reign of Christ. The recovery of believers from death and sin is not a single, one-time event. The saved must undertake a journey to GOD that requires many acts of obedience, careful choices, and experiences of self denial. Rather than discrete events such as only reading the Bible, there will be repeated demands that absolutely must be met for change in behavior, conduct and desires; demands for growth in relationship and understanding with other believers; continuous demands for repentance from sin; and unquenchable demands for prayer, service and worship to embrace the presence of GOD.

THE GOLDEN ARROW: Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles. For so hath the Lord commanded us, saying, I have set thee to be a light of the Gentiles, that thou shouldest be for salvation unto the ends of the earth. And when the Gentiles heard this, they were glad, and glorified the word of the Lord: and as many as were ordained to eternal life believed. And the word of the Lord was published throughout all the region. But the Jews stirred up the devout and honourable women, and the chief men of the city, and raised persecution against Paul and Barnabas, and expelled them out of their coasts. (Acts 13: 46-50, King James Version)

THE DOUBLE DAGGER: According to the Eternal Purpose (11/20/2012); Still The “Chosen” (03/19/2012); GOD Does Exist (03/20/2012); The First Jews (02/20/2012); Upon This Rock (02/21/2012); Why Only Luke (02/22/2012); New Covenant? (01/08/2011); Annulled? (01/09/2011)

      The “good news” (the Gospel) proclaimed through the ministry of Jesus Christ has many aspects and levels. By declaring a mission to the Gentiles that would no longer be centered within and dependent upon the system of synagogues, or the practice of the Temple at Jerusalem, the Apostle Paul introduced the next phase in declaring the universal truth of salvation to mankind. Rejection by the Jews of the teachings that Jesus of Nazareth appeared in the earth as Messiah to fulfill holy promises from GOD that are recorded in Scripture would not be an obstacle to the completion of the divine work to anchor human understanding in a more complete and correct revelation of GOD. And this was good news.

      Like many others (for example, the prophets Daniel and John the Baptist, and the Apostle Peter), Paul did not immediately grasp the full understanding of GOD operating both in the flesh and through the spirit. Even modern day believers have difficulty with the many spiritual truths that must be accepted for mature service and worship. Historical truths that GOD had appeared and operated in the earth were in line with doctrines that identified GOD as using men in the earth through covenants. The priesthood that may be traced from Adam to Moses was seen as confirmed in the life and work of Jesus, rather than contradicted or denied. Because custom and tradition among the true followers of Moses had permitted the spread of human error, the duty to share spiritual benefit with the Gentiles had been deemphasized, ignored, and overlooked. After illumination from Christ, Paul was able to see that wholeness for the work of GOD could not be correctly accomplished without embracing the Greeks, Romans and all other peoples.

      There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended. (For example, that mankind is granted an impartial, yet, empathetic and experienced judge is good news. Because of sin, there have long been those who think themselves wise by showing disrespect to others. The problems of disbelief, ignorance and racism may cloud and delay a believer’s understanding; however, the light of the Gospel cannot be extinguished for those who realize that the necessary changes within their being (that also must come by death, re-birth, learning and growth) are primarily through the operation of the spirit imparted from GOD. And this, too, is good news.) Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful. Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIXWashington, DC

     Christian maturity, covenant, and law are topics, today, with more on escaping racism. A “Yahoo! Answers” writer using the ID “Ian” (Level 1 with 37 points, a member since September 30, 2012) posted the following:


Why do most Christians ignore God’s laws?


THE BATTLE AXE: Escape from Racism (10/24/2012)— Because they identify racism with social realities, many fail to recognize that racism is a spiritual problem that derives from sin, an influence that dominates the will of created beings and living creatures, and that opposes the divine existence of GOD. Despite accounts from the Bible and The Book of Mormon, bias, discrimination, prejudice and racism (called being a respecter of persons in Scripture) are forms of unrighteous judgment, and therefore are disgusting and hateful to GOD. Becoming free of racism within others as well as from within oneself, requires power that comes only from GOD. At no time in the history of mankind has the righteousness of GOD been identified as the result of skin color, and ethnic origin. Yet, condemnation, and the curse of GOD against sin have been promoted as portrayed through race. Mature believers from every ethnic origin now trust that Jesus Christ has broken-off every curse that may have come through earlier forms of the law. In many settings where racism now appears, doctrinal differences were first at issue; and racism emerged later as the corruption of sacred truth. While originally competition, conflict, division and schism may have begun through the Devil, racism appears maintained primarily through operation of the world system. There, contrary to the holy writings and promptings by the Spirit of GOD, mankind insists upon customs and traditions that amplify racial differences, and that enlarge human error. Clearly the Scriptures teach us that there are divine standards for holy service, for entering the presence of GOD, and for obtaining divine favor. As demonstrated by the account of Abel and Cain (sons of Adam), every sacrifice is not answered with holy fire confirming acceptable worship, and commanded obedience. Standards for the people of GOD, and genuine priesthood after the things in heaven, have been demonstrated through Jesus Christ, the Incarnate person of GOD. In Scripture, class differences began among the sons of Adam very early on the basis of such elements as prowess in hunting (Nimrod). Later, ethnic discrimination appears against the Jews (who were herdsmen, keepers of livestock), that apparently began in Egypt on the basis of occupation. The Jews were not chosen as a divine instrument to promote their ethnicity, their economic productivity, or any racial differences. Nor were the Jews taken into covenant to perpetuate racial conflict. Even so, wherever the people in the covenant of Moses have gone in Diaspora, there have been problems that result because they must separate (i.e., be cleansed and set apart) to serve Almighty GOD. Like many contemporary Jews, some Christians account themselves socially acceptable and involved in the great issues of modern society. However, they too have a duty to be “a peculiar people,” and should answer sanctification, the operation of the imparted, indwelling Spirit from GOD whereby a believer is set apart to be further made fit for eternal life.


THE GOLDEN ARROW: Behold, I have taught you statutes and judgments, even as the Lord my God commanded me, that ye should do so in the land whither ye go to possess it. Keep therefore and do them; for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the nations, which shall hear all these statutes, and say, Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people. For what nation is there so great, who hath God so nigh unto them, as the Lord our God is in all things that we call upon him for? And what nation is there so great, that hath statutes and judgments so righteous as all this law, which I set before you this day? Only take heed to thyself, and keep thy soul diligently, lest thou forget the things which thine eyes have seen, and lest they depart from thy heart all the days of thy life: but teach them thy sons, and thy sons’ sons; Specially the day that thou stoodest before the Lord thy God in Horeb, when the Lord said unto me, Gather me the people together, and I will make them hear my words, that they may learn to fear me all the days that they shall live upon the earth, and that they may teach their children. (Deuteronomy 4: 5-10, King James Version)


THE DOUBLE DAGGER: Double Standard? (10/12/2012); Family and Romance (10/13/2012); Faith Establishes Law (03/10/2012); Support For The Bible (03/11/2012); Dispatch 42: Unprofitable Servants (09/21/2011); Why Disobey? (03/18/2011); Two Opinions? (03/19/2011); To Do His Will? (01/31/2011); To Get Wisdom? (02/01/2011)

    
     Until they are mature, created beings and living creatures do not fully grasp the divine realities of law from GOD. While the law is to make Almighty GOD, who is nonmaterial and spirit both known and visible, there are many other sacred operations and purposes accomplished through the law that at first cannot be seen, and understood. The law must respond to many subtle points (barely visible differences; fine details), and goes beyond attitudes, behavior, and conduct of the living. Law is a display of divine will, thus, in this sense, the law itself is invisible; and may only be “seen” after being assimilated, and internalized. Do you see what I mean?
    
     When still developing, many Christians acknowledge the covenant of Moses (called “the law” in Scripture) as an historical foundation for Christian belief. However, they mistakenly understand the covenant as having been ended by Jesus, rather than transformed, improved, and extended. These incorrectly apply the critiques that identify the shortcomings of the Mosaic covenant, and its system of animal sacrifices for atonement, and propitiation of sin. In addition to condemning the rites and ceremonies from the Tabernacle and Temple, many condemn all the civil law, ordinances, statutes and testimonies of Israel, pointing to them as the cause of the failures and sins of the people. More than this, they do not yet comprehend the various connections among faith, forgiveness, humility, judgment, love, obedience, and righteousness.
    
     There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended. (For example, when lacking balance and depth of understanding, many are prone to regard salvation as a free gift that demands no action, or change on the part of believers. While they are correct that, as with the Creation of mankind, salvation is an operation of divine person, and that believers have no active part or “say” in the sacred process; it remains, believers must respond to various disciplines and standards for fellowship within the body of Christ. All believers do not preach or sing in the choir, yet, all are given the “work” of spreading the Gospel through their routines of daily living.) Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful. Be it unto you according to your faith.


THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

      Topics today include racism, salvation and systems of truth. Also, there is more on love in Christ. The “Yahoo! Answers” writer, using the ID “Leveret” (Level 1 with 85 points, a member since October 23, 2012) posted the following:


How to become less racist?

I’m like one of the most racist people. And I hate it. I always catch myself making racist jokes and comments. But the worst thing is, I think it too. I’ve always lived in a sheltered small town. Really just full of rednecks. When I was 4 we went to visit family in Denver, and I asked my mom why that man was so dirty. She told me about this, and he shook his head and said “Sheltered white girl”. I don’t remember, but my extremely racist family jokes about it all the time. All my friends are like this, and so is my whole family. My dad, grandpa, uncles, and my boyfriend all think that America was better off segregated. Hell, my boyfriend has a giant rebel flag hanging on his wall. And my cousin has KKK wicked small tattooed on his lower abs. He’s not in the KKK, so idrk why he has that, but it’s just the meaning. And my mom has a tshirt that says “White America”. I love my family and boyfriend with all my heart, but I can’t help but feel almost brain washed. Everytime I see a colored person, I get nervous and walk with my head down. Then with eveyr other race I just think about it. I feel mostly racist against colored people. And I want to stop. I’ve been trying to cut down on racist comments, but it’s really just how I think. How can I become more open minded? Thank you.


THE BATTLE AXE: Love in Christ (10/23/2012)—It is love to desire life, and right relationship with GOD for others as well as for oneself. Thus, by accepting accountability, obeying, and thoroughly performing the duty he was given Jesus demonstrated three of the highest expressions of love. As a living purpose, love shapes existence and is expressed as a goal to add value for, or unselfishly benefit another. Saying this a different way, love generates being, and life. Love often requires one set aside their own pleasure, and self-will to carry out and perform the will of another. Believers seek to apply the example of Jesus in all their relationships. This includes marriage, parenting, friendship, workplace behavior and fellowship in the church. Having the shared work of spreading his gospel, the followers of Jesus replace complaining, criticism, hostility and insults with encouragement, giving, and help to accomplish the mission.


THE GOLDEN ARROW: Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith. (Galatians 6: 7-10, King James Version)


THE DOUBLE DAGGER: Still the “Chosen”? (03/19/2012); GOD Does Exist (03/20/2012); The First Jews (02/20/2012); Upon This Rock (02/21/2012); The Cause Of Unrest (01/30/2012); The Need For GOD (01/31/2012); Dr. King (Poem 1) 08/27/2011; Lip Service? (03/01/2011); To Give a Life? (03/02/2011); Mankind’s World? (11/20/2010); For Our Sins? (11/21/2010)

     Thanks for your question; here’s what I may share at this time:

     For many mature Christian believers, the challenge to escape from racism is understood as the challenge to escape from “the world.” The major systems that determine our life values (and what we believe to be true/false, real/unreal, right/wrong, good/bad) include the flesh, the world, the Devil, and GOD. As we learn and grow from childhood, we come under the influence of all these systems; and, for many, life is a mix of beliefs, practices and standards generated by these four. Salvation and escape from the world through Jesus Christ involves allowing a Spirit sent from GOD to establish spiritual change that develops and is expressed by growth and learning.

      The flesh dominates action and thought as appetite (e.g., hunger, thirst, sexual cravings), sensation (e.g., hearing, seeing, tasting, touching), and mind (e.g., dreams, fantasy, imagination, recall). The world (e.g., culture, family, peers, society) dominates through such elements as shared education, fashion, history, language, names for things, and trade. The earth is believed created of GOD, however, the world is created by mankind to exchange and share resources for survival. By the Devil is understood all those created beings and living creatures in the earth realm that come under the influence of sin, that exalt self-will, and that oppose or resist the will of GOD. Included may be angels, animals and human beings.
    
     Where men and women come under the influence of GOD their awareness is transformed to continually address divine will. In addition to discernment (ability to correctly recognize the spirit content of accounts, events, experiences and messages) believers gradually gain certainty, confidence and a broad set of specific convictions, desires, duties, and expectations (i.e., hope) spoken of as an inheritance.
    
      There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended. (For example, the substance of racism is anger, distrust, fear and hate, while the substance of fidelity, love and respect is always the Spirit of GOD. The duty to love carries one beyond the usual feelings of attraction, romance and self-interest. Giving, helping, sharing and unselfishness become “natural” and “normal”. Benefit to others, consideration, kindness and godly humility make “old” situations and relationships have “newness”. This is why Christian believers are called “born again”, “reborn” and “new creatures in Christ”.) Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful. Be it unto you according to your faith.


THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC