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Bible Prophecy Has Moved To:
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Enter The Story ~ Daily Reading Schedule
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Why monastic? - There is well-being (healing) in the quietness. "Be still and know I am God." Ps 46:10


Monday, April 24, 2017

Beware The Rules



Galatians 5:1 says -
                    "..Christ has made us free! And do not be entangled again by a yoke of servitude".

This does not of course, mean a believer and follower of Jesus is free to live a dissolute life! As Paul wrote "God forbid!" and "those things lead to death, where's the attraction?"

That's why The Way is a "narrow way"! Because there's huge ditches on either side! One is the ditch of license. And the other is the ditch of "rules". Beware the rules!

The first churches were not as we have our churches now. They were brothers and sisters (in love with God and Jesus) getting together. And following the Spirit.

The first enemies - "love your enemies" - were the 'Judaizers'. They wanted Gentiles (non-Hebrew, not under the Law of Moses) believers to become Judean. If we read the Letter to the Galatians, or any other letter actually, but especially Galatians, it's obvious this was not the plan of God. [Also Acts chapter 15, of course.]

And we can see that spirit today. It's always been very active! You must do this, you must not do that. When The Way is a relationship. And the living upon God's Word and Spirit (bread and wine of life). "If you are led of the Spirit, you will not be doing the acts of the lower carnal character." You just won't. You are following and yearning after the Spirit and drinking of the Word of Life. That is The Way of transformation and 'self improvement' - though it is NO act of self.

When we seek to follow rules.. any rules, to be 'right with God', approved of by God.. we have stepped out of His plan. We are saying or trying to believe, that God will owe us acceptance, like wages. (On the Holy Day "you will do NO work!") It is a gift. It is His doing. It is a recognition and affirmation that HE, is the only source of good. (The only source of Life!) And this is "all given to us, freely, through Jesus".
     "That the spirit in our heart cries 'abba, Father!' is the sign and seal and proof that we are His! His pledge that all that He has promised shall be given." And "He is faithful to carry out the good work which He has begun in us". ..."via the same POWER which rose Jesus from the grave."

The other - "any 'other' gospel" - has not that power. It's a dead end. It's a ditch.

It comes in many guises. The second 'enemies' of the gospel (news/good news) were the gnostics. They had a very large whole set of rules! They believed matter, the universe, was why mankind was flawed and the world was as it is. That somehow we (life) had 'fallen into matter' and this is what we needed to be saved from. The body was especially evil, and all its functions. Of course this led to other sects of the belief, which was license, for if all earthly functions were evil, like eating and drinking (and breathing? And don't forget, the bible says "honorable [is] the marriage in all, and the bed undefiled".) So if even walking was 'evil' then what the heck, why not just do anything and everything since it was the body itself that was guilty, lacked character, and hey, this must all be God's fault! And my special insight/knowledge/gnosis is what will set me free!

How crazy is that!? But it's the root and foundation of any "rules" system. And unlike the "freedom in Christ" it's a system of following humans and a human group. We get this from individuals and from organizations. It says 'believe in Jesus and.. ..and I'll tell you the special rule.. come and follow me..' And, or, be a part of my group..

I don't know why it works, but it seems to work very well.

Galatians 5:1 - "..Christ has made us free! ..do not be entangled again by a yoke of bondage".

Any personal conviction I may have.. be it vegetarian, or any rule I may choose to follow, is likely a wonderful thing.. but not mine to impose or even suggest to another. Paul - led of the Spirit to write a large bulk of the New Testament - said, "know only Christ".

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