WARNING - Work in Progress

WARNING - Work in Progress
WARNING - Work in Progress

Sunday, January 28, 2018

The Rules of Christianity – 1/28/2018


When God redeemed and saved the Israelites from their slavery in Egypt, He promised to take them from Egypt and give them a land of their own (i.e. the land of Canaan).  In the process of them traveling to their new home God had to do a lot of work teaching them to how to live as His children.  We often find the laws boring to read through in our Bibles, but these laws were quite necessary.  And it only makes sense doesn’t it?  The Israelites had lived some 400 hundred years in Egypt as slaves.  They were Egyptian; their culture, their spirituality, their world-view, their practices, everything they had ever known in this world was Egyptian.  So when God led them off into the world, they had to be re-taught how to think and act because the world God was leading them to, was nothing like the Egypt they had always known.

Deuteronomy 18:14-16

14 The nations you will dispossess listen to those who practice sorcery or divination. But as for you, the Lord your God has not permitted you to do so. 15 The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your fellow Israelites. You must listen to him. 16 For this is what you asked of the Lord your God at Horeb on the day of the assembly when you said, “Let us not hear the voice of the Lord our God nor see this great fire anymore, or we will die.”

Priests, Holy Men, Shamans, and the like all used methods of the dark spiritual arts to guide people; this is just the way it was done in the world, but God had redeemed the Israelites and was showing them a new way of living from what they had always known.  Instead of having someone who used sorcery or divination to guide people through the spiritual life, God would put his spirit into a Prophet that would have the very words of God to direct the people with.

In our present lives, it is quite the same.  When Jesus redeemed us from our lives of sin and death, He is now leading us toward our own Promised Land and teaching us how to live sanctified lives in Him.  All the rules and regulations that we feel that are put on the Christian are nothing more than re-teaching us how to live.

·         * Instead of living for own benefit, we have died with Christ and now live for the benefit of others.

·         * Instead of living in drunken reverie, we have died with Christ and now live a sober life to honor Him.

·         * Instead of living in sexual deviancy, we have died with Christ and now live to honor Christ with our bodies.

·         * Instead of living as a religious person, we have died with Christ and now live lives of faith through the Spirit of Him who lives in us.

While justification[1] in Christ is not about our morality, our sanctification [2]most definitely is.  Don’t avoid Jesus because of the rules, but understand that rules are necessary to retrain us to live in the Kingdom of Christ.

[1] Justification is a fancy word that means that we are redeemed by Jesus because of His act on the cross.  God considers you and I redeemed because of Jesus, not because of our right understanding or actions.  Therefore, redemption and salvation in Christ is not YOU but about Jesus: the rules are not the point. (See 1 Corinthians 6:12-17)
[2] Sanctification is a fancy word that means a follower of Jesus is making his actions holy as He is holy.  Here the rules matter, the problem is figuring out which rules actually matter to God.  Man is very good at making rules in the church that sound right but have nothing at all to do with actually being sanctified before Christ. (See Mark 8:28-31)

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