Posts Tagged ‘soil’

Vine Yard

 

Today, the reply uses trees and vines to clarify the demands for commitment and dependence from those who become members joined to the body of Christ.  Correctly understood, eternal life comes by a relationship of continual exchange and interaction with divinity that remain unbroken and uninterrupted, even by sleep (i.e., death).  A fighter in the “Yahoo! Answers” forum who uses the ID “Breakthrough” (Level 6 with 15,745 points, a member since June 29, 2013) posted the following:

 

How do you understand this verse?

“In me you will bear much fruit. Apart from me you can do nothing.”

To me it means you have to bear fruit for God if you want to be successful in your life

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field:  But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way.  But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also.  So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares?  He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up?  But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them.  Let both grow together until the harvest:  and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them:  but gather the wheat into my barn.  (Matthew 13:  24-30, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  A Rebellious Fig Tree? (12/21/2016); Mustard Seed Faith? (01/16/2014); The Judges Who Condemned Jesus? (01/17/2014); The Barren Tree? (12/06/2013); Fruits From a Barren Tree? (12/07/2013); All Flesh is Grass? (10/29/2013); The Root of Jesse (01/03/2013); Newness of Spirit? (01/04/2013)

 

“Breakthrough”, for many developing and young Christians the verse you seem to have in mind is a poetic metaphor that speaks like a parable to the joining and unity that must exist for all those who come to Jesus seeking “new life.”  Those who join the church are counseled to never leave the church.  While the boughs and limbs of a tree bear up and display its fruit, the life of the fruit is not from either of those two members.  A Christian believer must become permanently attached to the Savior in the same way a living branch or limb extends from the trunk of a tree.  The branches and limbs are not embedded within the ground, and may not draw nourishment and water directly from the soil.  The trunk of a tree provides protection to the capillaries and other soft tube-like structures that transfer material from the soil below to the leaves and fruit of the tree that are above.  Like stems and twigs of the same tree, the branches and limbs must continually receive substance transferred through the process and strength of the roots—the life within the fruit does not come from the trunk, the branches, or the limbs.

Vines are very different from trees in the thickness and rigidity of their form.  While many vines do not display a strong, hard feature like a trunk that can ensure its survival, because they are thin and light-weight, they can send out feelers that allow them to cling on walls, trees, and other objects to become elevated to where they may receive the sun.  Despite the great size they sometimes achieve, grapes, pumpkins, and watermelon may grow on vines thinner than the spokes of a bicycle.  Consider again the following that uses language from the Bible:

(1.)  John 15:  4-9, King James Version (KJV):  4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.  5 I am the vine, ye are the branches:  He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit:  for without me ye can do nothing.  6 If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.  7 If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.  8 Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.  9 As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you:  continue ye in my love.

(2.)  Romans 8:  5-10, KJV:  5 For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.  6 For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.  7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God:  for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.  8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.  9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.  10 And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.

(3.)  Galatians 5:  19-23, KJV:  19 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,  20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,  21 Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like:  of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.  22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,  23 Meekness, temperance:  against such there is no law.

There is far more to be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (4.) Matthew 5:  16, KJV:  16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

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THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

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Today, some points for consideration are posted that speak to the issue of Christians, Islamic believers, and Jews sharing the Temple Mount located in Jerusalem.  All who would know the peace of GOD in our times must be prepared to prevail over finite, human pride, and to correctly embrace an eternal divine perspective.  Created beings and living creatures do not bestow or impart divinity, glory and holiness upon GOD; rather, GOD endows duration, existence and person to Creation.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Thus saith the LORD of hosts; I was jealous for Zion with great jealousy, and I was jealous for her with great fury.  Thus saith the LORD; I am returned unto Zion, and will dwell in the midst of Jerusalem:  and Jerusalem shall be called a city of truth; and the mountain of the LORD of hosts the holy mountain.  Thus saith the LORD of hosts; There shall yet old men and old women dwell in the streets of Jerusalem, and every man with his staff in his hand for very age.  And the streets of the city shall be full of boys and girls playing in the streets thereof.  Thus saith the LORD of hosts; If it be marvellous in the eyes of the remnant of this people in these days, should it also be marvellous in mine eyes? saith the LORD of hosts.  (Zechariah 8:  2-6, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Cleansing the Temple, and the Body (03/16/2014); GOD to “Try Harder”? (03/17/2014); Money-changers in The Temple? (06/23/2013); Believers and the Cross (06/24/2013); Putting GOD First? (06/02/2013); The Need to Purify Heaven (01/17/2013); The Golden Age? (01/10/2013); Translation, Please… (01/11/2013); Mob Rule and Violence (09/27/2012); Suppose I Am Wrong? (09/28/2012)

 

By now, the things of our various religious traditions should have prepared us to correctly grasp the earliest things given to mankind as well as all that has become available through Jesus Christ for a mature understanding of divinity.  Consider again the following points:

1.  As with the place where Moses saw a bush that burned without giving off smoke, or showing any ashes, and was told to “take off his shoes,” the Temple mount must be understood as holy by the divine presence, rather than by the appearance of natural forces such as fire, lightning, water, and winds.  To avoid the posting of a divine sentinel (with a flaming sword that turns every way) as was done at the entrance to the Garden of Eden, there absolutely must be dutifulness, honor, humility, respect, and reverence.

2.  To sanctify is to cleanse and set apart as exclusively for sacred use.
Rather than from awe, fear of destruction, perplexity, or threats of doom the sanctity of the Temple Mount for mankind may be established only through enlightenment, genuine love, and the many operations by the spirit from GOD that may indwell created beings and living creatures (this would include angels) for the accomplishment of eternal purpose without conflict, corruption or violence.

3.  Confusion about GOD inhabiting natural objects and forces resulted in false worship at groves, “high places,” and shrines that was little different than astrology, divinization, idolatry, star-gazing, or worship of the moon and sun.

4.  The clear teaching that GOD may be in covenant relationship to mankind is seen with Abraham.  That a Spirit from the makeup and substance of GOD may indwell mankind is seen first with Adam, and appears later with Moses and the 70 elders elected to govern along with the Levites and Aaronic priesthood. 

There is a lot more to be said, correctly applied, thoroughly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (5.)  More than a trade agreement or treaty among men is called for.  There must be accord with GOD (some say, sacred covenant) wherein the divine purpose can be revealed as directed to building, cleansing, healing, life, and love for all created beings and living creatures even more than to death, judgment, punishment, warfare, and wrath.  It is necessary to ask, What is it GOD wants from us, and what may we do today, that is to endure and shape all mankind in the years that are ahead?)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

There is no wisdom nor understanding nor counsel against the LORD.  (Proverbs 21:  30, KJV)

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

A few points are shared, today, that focus on hierarchy and order as tools within the church founded by Jesus Christ.  Also, there is more on the earth made new, and life following judgment.  John Michael Talbot, the Franciscan monk and motivational minister, with whom I feel a strong bond after many years of embracing his music ministry, shared an article through the Facebook Internet site that provoked in me a powerful pulse of Protestant sentiment, and feeling against an office of Pope to rule over the body of believers.  Specifically, I reacted when I read the following that was posted by the itinerant pastor:

 

Christ the Lord passed on to his apostles the task he had received from the Father: I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations. He wanted the apostles as a body to be intimately bound together, first by the inner tie of the same faith and love which flows into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, and, second, by the external tie of authority exercised by one apostle over the others. For this he assigned the primacy to Peter, the source and visible basis of their unity for all time. So that the unity and agreement among them would endure, God wisely stamped them, one might say, with the mark of holiness and martyrdom.  (From an excerpt of the Encyclical Letter Ecclesiam Dei by Pope Pius XI  (AAS 15 [1923], 573-582)

 

THE BATTLE AXE:  (11/13/2013) The Earth Made New—The soil and waters of the earth made new will be fertile and pure, without blood, without bones, having power for life, and containing no dead things.  Mankind will be fed with the yield of the earth as at the beginning; fruits and green herbs of the field will grace every table.  There will be nations, however, cities as we have now will not exist.  Every family will live and work in their own lands as independent artisans, craft workers, and farmers.  Learning and scholarship will continue in the home and larger community assemblies as will devotion, prayer, spiritual studies, and worship.  There will be no economy of borrowing, lending and indebtedness.  The giving of gifts, offerings, tithes and sacrifices to appease GOD will not appear.  Yet, like the praise of the twenty-and four elders who cast their crowns to Christ, tears of joy with tokens of gratitude and love will be continue to be brought before the Almighty throughout all eternity.  There will be access to GOD at all times, and all seasons.  See Genesis 8:  20-22, Isaiah 66:  22-23, Isaiah 65:  17-25; Revelation 21:  21-27, King James Version.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great exercise authority upon them.  But it shall not be so among you: but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister;  And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant:  Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.  (Matthew 20:  25-28, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Utterance is Spirit (09/08/2013); The “Jesus Way”? (05/17/2013); When GOD Controls (04/22/2013); The Divine Use of a Human Life? (04/23/2013); Confessing Only to GOD? (04/08/2013); Evidence of the Unseen Spirit? (04/09/2013); On Titles and Respect (03/15/2013); On Producing Atheists (03/16/2013); My Sheep Hear My Voice (03/08/2013); Wanting To Have Our Way (03/09/2013); Why A “Spokesperson”? (01/14/2013); No Contradictions (01/15/2013)

 

The related issues of authority and primacy of the apostles must also be viewed through the framework for prophecy as distinct from priesthood.  Both priesthood and prophecy are first recorded in the Bible when the Scriptures speak of Adam’s disobedience and the divine provisions for mankind’s recovery from death (see Genesis 3:  1-24, Romans 5:  12-21 and 1st Corinthians 15:  21-23, KJV).  Hierarchy may be seen introduced where the first male and female are commanded by the Creator to exercise dominion over the earth as caretakers (a mother and a father) to maintain the Garden of Eden.

All believers and followers of Jesus Christ should understand that divine authority and governance have always been revealed and made visible through divisions of labor, diversity, the scope of ones spiritual anointing and endowment, and varying levels of inclusion for sacred events.  Ranks for administration are in place among the holy angels in heaven as well as upon the earth through dominions, thrones, and principalities.  Even so, the angels have no line authority over men in the ministry of Jesus to mankind (see Colossians 1:  16, Romans 8:  34-39 and Revelation 19:  9-10, KJV).

Those who left Egypt with Moses, repeatedly challenged, yet could not counterfeit or manipulate, the office of prophet as they did the office of priest filled by Aaron, his brother.  As demonstrated by Moses, the office of prophet continued the personal relationships of GOD with mankind seen with Adam, Enoch, Noah, and Abraham (called, the Friend of GOD).  Moses presented GOD through the imparted, indwelling Spirit of Prophecy (also called the Comforter, the Holy Ghost, the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Truth) as the only authority over any prophet.  Even so, students of Scripture are often surprised to see, in addition to reports of prophets chastising kings, prophets condemning corruption practiced by the priesthood, and teachings against false prophets, reports of conflicts among prophets are also recorded (for examples, see 1st Samuel 2:  27-35, 1st Kings 13:  1-34, 1st Kings 22:  1-28, and Malachi 1:  6-14, KJV).

As was done by Moses, Jesus also proclaimed a personal relationship with GOD, and was vigorously opposed by the priesthood at Jerusalem, and those in the Temple traditions.  Jesus acknowledged his place as Master, and instructed his disciples to exalt no man upon the earth above GOD as sovereign and spiritual Father (see Matthew 23:  1-12 and John 13:  13, KJV).

The early church received the tradition as prophets from Jesus Christ; and the office of apostle displayed a personal relationship with GOD through Christ that those of the Temple refused to endorse.  Believers in Jesus have been challenged by the writings of the Apostle Paul to accept offices and rankings within the church.  Following the outpouring of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, prophecy as a gift, not as an office, appeared throughout the early church.  For many, the appointment of a presbytery of bishops (also called elders) and deacons was more in line with management tools used by the world that do not establish or operate as does a hierarchy described by spiritual gifts (see 1st Corinthians 12:  27-31 and Ephesians 4:  11-13, KJV).  Much of the confusion regarding the singularity of the Pope may be traced to the need for broader awareness regarding the Spirit of Prophecy, divine authority through the Spirit, and the appearing and proper place of the Holy Spirit within the church, today (see Revelation 22:  8-13, KJV).

There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually understood.  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.  Jesus is coming soon, and whatever our level of participation in ministry and service may be, all who receive his salvation are to continue in humility, and to grow in grace until that very hour.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

 

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