The Ace Theological Company’s
Tue, Dec 14th, 2021.
48º outside… that’s warm.
That means I can fold up that plastic tarp today.
Can’t do it when it’s too cold.
So, we want to pick up on this “95 Thesis” thing… complaining about the mess we see in religion, especially organized religion.
And where I wanted to go this morning is concerning the beloved concept of “freewill”.
I don’t know why they love that thing so much… but let’s explore:
Dear Freewill Chick —
Dear Bill —
Dear A.K. —
Dear Jack Smack —
Dear Josh, Not Josh —
(You can tell I don’t get out much, those are all the folks I know who preach freewill crap. Back when I use to “go to church” everyone I knew believed it or preached it. And those who did not “preach” it still believed it. — I’m telling you, it’s a beloved doctrine… but why?)
So, here is my question to you…
Never mind whether the “doctrine of freewill” is actually taught in the Bible or not…
The question is: Does the teaching of FREEWILL by it’s very nature give glory to GOD? or MAN?
I just don’t see how you can say that freewill glorifies God. The whole concept, lowers God to a position in which He has to bargain with man. And it raises man to a position in which he can alter God’s intention, purpose and plans.
How silly to think man can foil the plans of the One who gives life and breath and all to all. (ACTS 17:25-28)
When I was first thinking of slapping together this morning’s thoughts… I was going to open it up by saying…
“Dear Proud One,”
And I was going to bust the chops of the freewill chick and her co-workers — accusing them of having so much pride and prattle on, as if my accusations could help them “see” and help them give up that pride, and dump the freewill teaching.
But after thinking a minute or two… I saw how foolish that would be to tell those guys, “Hey, you’re proud. Why don’t cha give up that pride”… Like that argument would go anywhere.
But the truth is, freewill does lead to pride, pride and more pride. You “chose” of your own “freewill” to humble yourself before God, wow, you must be so proud.”
No way around it.
One reason we are honored to prattle on against “freewill” in this thing we’re calling “Ace Theo’s 95 Thesis” – Is that Martin Luther was also hip to the idea that freewill is B.S. In fact, he wrote a book called THE BONDAGE OF THE WILL.
To the best of my knowledge no-one has written a book called “THE FREEDOM OF THE WILL”. Now all those guys listed above, and more, certainly believe and teach that we are burdened with a “free” will…. But to write a book with that title is crazy. It’s easy to toss the word “freewill” around as if it means something and everyone understands what you mean… but to outright say “the freedom of the will” instantly begins to expose your ruse.
We all know intuitively that our “will” doesn’t have much wiggle room. The title of Luther’s book makes much more sense than the alternative.
Back to the question:
Does the teaching of FREEWILL
by it’s very nature give glory to GOD? or MAN?
The question should scare us to death… if we really care about and love God and His Son. I say most don’t. The thing we call “the church” does not love and Honor God and His Son… but we can clearly see THEY LOVE FREEWILL. And the road that FREEWILL takes them down. They paint the story of God with the colors of human freewill and it’s not a pretty picture, I tell you. Through it all… they MUST glorify the creature and marginalize the Creator. (See Romans 1:25 — to worship the creature as oppose to the Creator).
But… to ask these kids to give up their PRIDE… is ridiculous on my part. Down right silly of me. But hey, it’s worth a try.
“Hey Freewill Chick and gang… humble yourself, and give up your teaching of freewill… and boy oh, boy, you’ll really be proud that you did it…” — See how silly such a notion would be. It’s gonna take a miracle of God, to open their eyes and if “humble” is the goal, then “humiliation” is involved, and I would want to pray that God humiliate them… and yet, that’s one of the designs God has for all of us.
Just look at every lovely and beautiful little Pamela Anderson, or Tuesday Weld… We all get old, and cranky, and our beauty and memory fades. God is in the humiliation business. Freewill is such an immature teaching. I wish those “Bible teachers” would teach that ALL IS OF GOD. (Romans 11:36)
I know it’s a frightful thought to shuck your freewill teaching and go down the road to teaching ALL IS OF GOD… there are so many questions to ask, so many things to unlearn, so many brain cells that have to be broken and re-wired. Yikes. Be right back… going to refill my coffee.
5:52 a.m. — Pause 5:56 a.m. — onward. The closest I’ve ever come to “transforming” one of these guys is to wrestle him down long enough to get him to read Romans, chapter 8 and especially chapter 9… when we were done, he looked up and said “that’s a hard one”.
Do you get it… ? Romans 8 and 9 went against everything he was taught and was teaching others about this beloved “freewill” thing. And he could not argue against his own teaching. But the Bible slams it. And him. So he says “That’s a hard one.”
He wouldn’t commit to God’s revelation . He didn’t believe God.
Does the teaching of freewill exalt man? Or God?
Only in some twisted way can you say “Man’s freewill exalts God.” — can you see how absolutely goofy this is?
Man’s freewill exalts man.
My natural fallback to this argument is:
What is man’s “freewill” free of?
Free of influence? Causality? Peer pressure? Influences of birth? nationality? hair color? skin color? youthful desires? language barriers? I.Q?
There are so many things that influence our will.
But, thankfully, the ultimate influence on our will is God, the creator of all and the savior of all.
And God’s will is what we want to exalt and glorify. And God wills to save all mankind. (I TIM 2:4) So, does God have a “freewill”???… what a question, huh? That question alone seems to piss off the freewill teachers. It too, exposes their ruse.
How can we “believe” and “trust” a God who would give mankind so much responsibility as to determine his own destiny, when mankind is weak, infirm, ignorant, condemned in Adam, and lacking in so many ways. What kind of fool God would do that?
Sterling, makes a good point… not even God’s will is “free” as we loosely use the term… Sterling says “God is bound to His word.” How lovely is that thought?
I can’t help but think this is a very serious topic. The glorification of human freewill is so smelly, so sickening, so goofy. But what, oh what… would straighten out these fellows?
God’s word? Nah, they don’t care ‘bout that.
Logic? Nah, that doesn’t suit them.
Grace? That too, goes over their head.
I think the only thing that will destroy the teaching and glorification of “human freewill” is time and old age. The humility of God… God making us humble… by smacking us around… grey hair, hearing loss, achey joints, diseases that seem to come out of nowhere… you don’t hear those close to death yakking about “freewill”… they know. They know, they’d rather it be different, wildly different. Yet, all is of God.
All begins with God. All ends with God.
Can we get those guys to agree with that?
No, they’d freak out about that thought.
(Romans 1:25 those who alter the truth of God into the lie, and are venerated, and offer divine service to the creature rather than the Creator, Who is blessed for the eons! Amen!) Freewill worship the creature, right? Yikes.
Maybe tomorrow, I’ll load up a bunch of verses from the Scriptures that are not “freewill” friendly.
Grace to you.
Thanks for joining me, this morning.
6:25 a.m. (end)
The Ace Theological Company’s
Or as Louie Armstrong says… “Hello”.
Wednesday, Dec 15, 2021
26º out, looks like it dropped a foot of snow out my window, last night.
We’re suppose to be bitching about the problems caused by the modern-day church, but I’m thinking we need to pause for a moment and make sure our compass is right… so let’s establish, or re-establish something vital, in our epic journey… it’s that…
12 – ALL IS OUT OF GOD, FOR GOD AND THROUGH GOD. Romans 11:36.
If we can point out this and that about the church… stuff wrong ‘bout them… we must also see that All is of God. So, why would God let these guys get so far out of whack? Could it be that He’s got a plan and purpose?
For all my complaining about them-thar guys, on the whole, I’m grateful for them. My days in the Pentacostal Holiness church, my hard-core Baptist (ex) father-in-law, my time at the Rock Church in Virginia Beach, all the mega-churches, charismatics, full-gospel business men, all the home churches, and my brief experiences with the ones that were more cult like.
God bless ‘em all. All is of God. God brought them all to the point where they are, and got me into them and moved me along out of them… all is of God.
This morning, I woke up, thanking God for “my life”… and I put “my life” in quotes… because what I’ve learned over the years is that “my life” is really “hid together with Christ in God”. (See Colossians 3)
So, whatever individual, personal experience I recount, there is something I cannot tell you much about — it’s “my life” that’s hidden. If it weren’t hidden… perhaps I could brag all about it. But Paul tells us (somewhere in Colossians 3) that “Your life is hid together with Christ in God”…. (PLEASE NOTE) I DID NOT LEARN THIS FROM THE BAPTISTS, OR PENTACOSTALS…. It was right there in the scriptures, kind of hidden from my eyes by all the baloney feed to me by the posers.
When you’re young in the faith, you’re easily fooled by the posers.
So… for this segment of our exploration this morning… I want to point out that not only ALL IS OF GOD as revealed in more that one place in God’s word… but… the thing we know as “the church” never once hinted at this topic. In fact, I saw with my own eyes, dear ones who got close to this thought… never did know what they were seeing… just got close to it… got kicked out of church.
Yesterday, I got into it with a so-called “atheist”… and he was all about “I don’t believe there is a God.”
Well sir… I’m here to testify, that not only is there a God, but it makes no sense at all to proclaim one, UNLESS you also proclaim that ALL IS OUT OF HIM. (Romans 11:36, etc.)
And I think we can make the argument, that since the poser church, does not believe and teach that ALL IS OF GOD, they, yes they, create more atheists than the national organization of atheist united.
You see, if there is a “GOD”… then stick to the proper meaning of the term “GOD”… And if God is God, then all is out of Him, through Him and for Him. (Romans 11:36)
Including all the things we don’t like. All is of Him.
So, the modern day churchyanity, says “God” is only a half-ass God… who creates some things but not all things… that leaves room for a competitive “God”… or a bunch of competitive Gods. All fighting it out for supremacy… my oh my… that sounds like a cheesy B movie plot. Low budget.
Indeed, indeed, the Sunday preachers all over, tell you that there is a great battle between “the gods”… one “good” God and one “evil” God… and lawd, have mercy, the “evil” God is gonna win the biggest number in the end.
But it’s bull. All is of God… nothing is a shock and a surprise to Him. Atheist are of God. Baptists are of God. Joseph is of God, and especially Joseph’s brothers are of God.
Judas is of God. Pilate is of God. The soldiers at the foot of the cross are of God. The crown of thorns was of God. His death was of God. And of course, 3 days later, His resurrection was of God.
And now… now… our faith is of God. We don’t gin up our own faith. It too is of God. We can’t brag.
So this atheist can’t see that ALL IS OF GOD… and that too is of God. And since the modern day “church” can’t see that all is of God… they have plenty in common with so-called atheists. Funny huh?
The atheist kid had a tooth ache, and said, if there is a God, PROVE it by healing his tooth ache… and I was thinking after the conversation was over… God has healed more than tooth aches… He has raised numerous people from the dead… so, He’s done that “trick” before, and it did not convert the atheist to faith… but here we have an atheist who’s saying DO IT FOR ME… FOR ME… HEAL MY TOOTH ACHE… and raising the dead is of the same order as healing a tooth… it’s healing a “body ache”.
I’m saying God has done and is doing all things… and all kinds of things… and He gives faith to some to see it, but not to all.
I’m thrilled with God’s operations as I see them these days.
God’s plan, God’s purpose… it is far wiser than I can fathom… but I catch a glimpse.
“I’d believe in God IF…
He’d heal my tooth…
Raise my daughter…
Heal my leprosy… (Remember Jesus healed 10 lepers, and only one returned to thank Him.)
Show me a one-in-a million-event… (open your eyes, it’s a one-in-a-million event.) How about the “miracle of live-streaming, YouTube, and an Ace Monkey typing miraculous words on a screen in Utah, and you ‘be” watching it right now. Wow.
Sooner or later, we’re going to have to jump into the topic of GRACE… because we’ve named this project THE 95 THESES after Martin Luther’s effort before us. And Luther was all about GRACE… in fact, he wanted to toss the book of James out of the bible, along with the book of Revelation. Ain’t that something.
If I never read the book of James or Revelation again, I don’t think I’d miss ‘em.
I’m stuck on Paul.
And Paul says… All is of God (II COR 5:18-19)
He also says… All is of God (Romans 11:36)
Repetitive boy, huh?
He also says…
“In Him we live and move and are.” (Acts 17:25,28)
“God gives life and breath and all to all.” (Acts 17:25,28)
Ok, it’s 5 minutes till 7 a.m.
Maybe tomorrow we can explore thoughts on GRACE… as “grace” is of God. And it seems the posers hate GRACE, it goes against ever fiber of a poser’s being. Smiling yet?
Grace to you.
P.S. You are of God.
The Ace Theological Company’s
It’s about 30º out, right now.
The snow has yet to melt. Looks like it will be here for a week more.
We’re trying to weave our way through 95 things to gripe about concerning the modern day church. We could go in the doctrine direction or the behavior direction. Both are connected. The “church” behaves badly and they teach crap. So…
13… I thought I’d entitle this one: Dietrich Bonhoeffer.
My thought is how the church does not produce many Bonhoeffers. They, generally, produce the opposite of the dude.
I don’t know much about this man. He was a brother. He was a pastor. He was in the German Luthern (sp?) church. What makes him famous is that he was a pastor during the whole hitler thing. And he was famously against the whole hitler thing. While the rest of the “church” is famous for going along with the current ruling Pharaoh — just to get along… this Bonhoeffer guy, set out to kill hitler. Now that guy has guts. There are a few books about him. He’s got a wikipedia page. But you can count on the “church” not to produce many like him. They’re about money and money collection. Not principles. Not standards. Not integrity. Not honesty.
Years ago, I had a catholic friend. Late 70’s, early 80’s. Well… at breakfast one morning… I asked my catholic friend if the Catholic Church ever apologized for the Spanish Inquisition?
My friend changed the subject, and quick.
I compare the two… the Spanish Inquisition and Bonhoeffer. When it comes to power, rule, money, greed, and blood lettin’ the “church” does not have a good track record. And yet, they want us to believe they are the lamp-stand of God? They want to tell us to “go to church” ??? —
PLEASE NOTE: According to Paul, we are the church, we don’t “go to church” — big difference. Not a thought for the faint of heart.
SIDE NOTE: Paul Paulsen, I’m sure glad for your input on these matters and I just flat out love your comments, here and there.
So… back to our thought concerning the deception we call “the church”… I’m willing to say, if someone “finds God” in and through the efforts of the “church” is an accident really. They don’t have a “formula” that works, really. They’ve got formulas they follow… like that Billy Graham crusade thing… perhaps millions went up to the front and so-called “confessed their sins” and “accepted Jesus as their savior”… but where are they today? Do they brag about that Billy Graham experience? Nah… they have long sense forgot all about it.
I’m telling you guys… if God gives someone faith… it’s a miracle. And God is the author and finisher of the faith… and the Billy Graham formula is not it.
Note how Saul/Paul was brought in… he was not headed to a Billy Graham crusade… (lol) he was headed to town to teach those guys a lesson, they’ll never forget. Back lashes, blood letting’ and jail… is what he wanted for the saints.
But something wild happened to him. And the only words to drop from his mouth we’re not word of pride and arrogance… it was more like “WHO ARE’T THOU LORD?”
Let me ask you… would that have been a popular prayer at a Billy Graham crusade? The Billy Graham prayer, (BGP) that he taught those suckers to pray, when they came down front to confess their sins and “ask Jesus into their hearts”… the prayer was not as humble as Saul’s expression… No, the BGP was from a position of strength, a negotiation as it were… “God if you do this for me, I’ll do this for you”… in essence.
I bring this up… so you can see there’s not much “religion” in religion. Saul said “Who are’t thou Lord?” — In other words… Saul said “Oh shit”… There was no bargaining … no negotiation … no pride displayed when Saul was so rudely introduced to the Lord of all.
So, the Billy Graham, and all the organized christian church thing is a mere shadow of what’s really going on when God operates.
God does not “offer to save”… and you can thus, take advantage of His “offer”…. NO.. NO.. NO.. In God’s operations, God saves. He does not “offer” to save. There are no deals to be made.
So… if we insist on giving Bonhoeffer a proper salute… we’d have to say the “church” is and always will be just a shadow of what God is really doing in the world (at best). The “church” is and always will be a friend of the ruling elite. Even if the ruling elite is obviously criminal enterprise (with a fabulous PR budget).
We can see this in the first century… the Pharisees and the ruling Romans were best buds. Together they crucified the Inaugurator of Life. Together they chased the saints out of Jerusalem after murdering Stephen. Together they tried to put an end to Paul’s career among the Gentiles.
Again, I insist, the true “church” is always a loose band of believers, who occasionally get together. They don’t get too cozy in one place. They ARE the church, they don’t “go to church”… They are the “body of Christ.” A figure of speech so powerful, that we miss much of it’s implications… Everyone loves his own body. If any part of your body is achey, it gets immediate attention, love and care… oils, creams, vitamins, pain-killers, splints, stitches… whatever the body needs… IMMEDIATE ATTENTION… And WE are the body of Christ. And don’t forget, we get WASHED too… Paul reveals that… what it means, I don’t know… help me figure it out. Leave a comment.
The “church” we see in today’s world… is really just a highjacked edifice of the state. The church which is His body, is something spiritual.. and it’s something God creates, and cares for and can’t be taxed and can’t be expected to appear permanent… in any way. We might as well call it THE CHURCH ON THE BACK PORCH.
God bless Dietrich Bonhoeffer.
6:29 a.m. Coffee time, be right back.
6:35 a.m — cont’d
Now… in my scope of things… one of the biggest problems with the modern day “church” — (as oppose to the church which is His body) is that it’s a perfect Petri dish to grow a bunch of PRIDE, PRIDE PRIDE.
The “church which is His body” rarely gathers together. If you can find them on the back porch, you’re lucky. But this state approved organization with it’s tax exempt status, and it’s buildings, and parking lots, and chain of command… it’s the perfect place to establish that “tribal” thing which says “Your group sucks. And we’re super special.”
Ya know how we’re fond of saying “God is the savior”… (Ref: I TIM 4:10) And we follow up sometimes by saying YOU’RE NOT THE SAVIOR… God is. And we say “You don’t save yourself… God does.” In the same way… God creates the body of Christ. It’s HIS doing. He calls. He chooses. He brings it together. He scatters it. All for His own purposes. Wow.
Imagine that… That God has His own purposes going. And we might be let in on it… but it’s not vital if you see it.
“Need to know” basis.
Remember Sterling’s ecclesia at the Main Event? THAT is more of a church than anything we see with stained glass windows. “The church which is His body.” It’s God’s doings we’re seeing and talking about.
The real church gathers when God gathers it. It scatters just as quickly. Scattering should be bragging rights too.
Remember when Paul was finishing his career, he said “all in Asia have forsaken me.” — How strange. And how strange of us, not to explore that throw-away comment. “All have forsaken me”… it’s so easy to forget and forsake the things we see concerning God’s plan and purpose. It’s so easy to just get back to work trying to make a buck. It’s a “focus” thing, I think. Can you settle in the GRACE of God can not relish it moment by moment? I don’t know. Again… it’s God who is the author and finisher of YOUR faith. God is the savior. And the creator. What He starts, He will finish.
Don’t expect the “church” to ever do the “right thing”. They exist to appease the dark overlords. Bonhoeffer is a rare dude. The best you can do is get ready to spend some time on your back porch… where God is. And, it might help to spend some time in Paul’s letters.
Grace to you.
Until tomorrow, Lord willing.
6:57 a.m Dec 17th, 2021.
The sun will be up in about an hour.
P.S. If you scoot around and find out anything about Bonhoeffer, leave some comments about who and what he was all about.
The Ace Theological Company’s
Let’s see… it’s 21º out… should get to a high of 31º… so this snow ain’t never gonna melt off.
Grace and peace, as Paul says on a regular basis.
14: We’re trying to use Martin Luther’s version of “social media” as a model. In his day, you have to write out stuff on paper and pass it around. So, he wrote 95 things he found wrong with the Catholic Church… and nailed it to the Whittenberg door. The door of the church in Whittenberg, Germany.
When he did that, a lot of things were set in motion. As I know my history (and I’m a little sketchy on Luther), this guy, Martin Luther was the go-to guy when it comes to the whole “protestant” movement. Other guys in other nearby countries also did a revolt against the Catholic behemoth. However, as I recall, Martin Luther went to war — yes “WAR” with some other “brothers”… in Switzerland I think… just over the border… Some anabaptists brothers. And there was bloodshed. I couldn’t believe my eyes when I read this years ago.
Martin Luther — my hero for 10 whole minutes… picks up the sword and acts just like the Catholics he was bitching about.
Is there no hope for this human condition?
Which is why I love the Divine Calendar you can find over on the Concordant.org site. It shows that God has 12 different “administrations” in which he deals with humanity. Everything from “Innocence” (Adam) to the Millennial Reign of Christ.
Here’s the link to that calendar: https://www.concordant.org/product/eonian-times-chart-the-divine-calendar/
To me… this calendar, with the 12 different ways God deals with Humanity is a wonderful and gracious thing. You know… we can only say “Hey God, if only you’d do it differently… we could prove ourselves to you.” — we can only say that so many times before it become ridiculous — So God gives us some 12 different “trails” in which to prove we can’t help ourselves out of the mess we’re end. We actually need a “Savior”. God.
So, along comes Luther, and points out 95 things the Catholics are doing wrong… screwing up here and there… and basically repeats their “thing” all over again. What a hoot.
Luther became the “pope”… in essence. The “pope” of the German rebellion form of the Catholic church. The “Lutherans”.
God is the savior.
So… I want to plant today’s flag into the mountain of GRACE… Which we can see in both the scriptures and in God’s daily operations and His eonian purpose.
I confess, I did not read Luther’s 95 Theses very carefully. But I think he was somewhat informed on God’s grace. To the point were, later on, he dismissed the “book of James” and “the book of Revelation”… And for that I tip my hat to Martin Luther.
But on the whole, I don’t think anyone can explore the depths of GRACE enough or too far.
You see, God not only “operates in grace”… meaning, when we spot it, we can say “Nice”… and “Smooth move”…
But also, “grace” is fundamentally God not waiting around until we get our act together…. And instead, showers us with really, really, good things… even though we DON’T and NEVER CAN deserve it.
So, I’m sure Luther did not see this as clearly as I’m going to argue it now… but I think EVERYTHING God does is IN grace… and God does everything. PERIOD.
God graciously created all. God graciously created Adam. God graciously put him in a garden and gave him a good-looking woman. God graciously put that tree right there within eyesight and God graciously told him not to eat of it… and God graciously stacked the deck so that he would eat of it.
God graciously kicked him out of the garden. God graciously let the shitshow begin.
You know, if Adam had not eaten of the forbidden fruit, it would be a bigger nightmare than the one we’re seeing now… it would be a Twilight Zone episode… Where man was stuck in perfection for eternity… and never knowing it was perfection… because all “knowledge” is a comparison and a contrast thing. You CANNOT know good, unless and until you know evil.
So, for all those who complain about our current state of affairs and all the evil we’re dealing with, just imagine a world of perfection without ever having known evil. That, my friend is “evil”.
So God comes along and God graciously introduces man to chaos and confusion and condemnation. How loving. How kind. Especially knowing He is the Savior of all.
8:11 a.m. time to refill coffee, be back shortly.
8:18 a.m. … let’s continue:
I suppose we could argue from the Scriptures about GRACE or we could argue from logic or philosophy…. Either way… we’re looking at the concept of ONE GOD… !!!!!!
If there is only ONE GOD, then of course all this is of grace. And plan. And purpose.
The suggestion that we must do thus and so to appease this unappeasable “God” is immature… stupid… conniving… the message of a con artists… Help me out… it’s maddening.
God is one. And there is one God.
You can’t get around it. Nothing else works.
He created all. And He ain’t no fool. He knew what he was doing before He began it all. God is not a haphazard gambler who doesn’t know the outcome of His creative efforts.
Now when you approach the scriptures and try to make it say God has lost control of His creation… or try to package it to give you an income… you’re part of the deception . No doubt about it.
God graciously locks up all together in unbelief and stubbornness… see Romans 11:32. Wow.
And as Sterling like to say “All is out of Him, through Him and for Him. Take a bite of of that verse (Romans 11:36) and taste the butter in it.
When you look at the writings of Paul… and almost memorize them… you see that he was fighting the “works” guys throughout his career. Why oh why… are “works” so popular with the organized “christian” world?
I suppose it’s easy enough to see that if they can get you to believe in a “works” message, they’ll have leverage over you. They’ll have “tribal” mentality to play with. The ole “those guys suck” idea, “Join our tribe, we’re right, they’re wrong.”
God bless those works guys. They are just as vital to God’s operations of GRACE as Judas, Joseph’s brothers, and Pilate.
Can you see why it’s kinda tough to write this “95” complaining thing… oh sure… we’ll find 95 things to complain about concerning “churchanity”… but we keep coming back to ALL IS OF GOD.
Maybe next time, when we get together, we can peek at the grace of God in the cross of Christ. That’s really where we want to be. Everything we see and know and hope for is really a blessing that comes out of and through the cross. That’s why Paul famously says “I HAVE DETERMINED TO KNOW NOTHING AMONG YOU SAVE CHRIST AND HIM CRUCIFIED.”
Grace to you.
P.S. it’s still 21º out there.
The Ace Theological Company’s
Monday, Dec 20th, five days ’til Christmas.
23º out there, 4:26 a.m.
Good morning dear one,
15 — I wanted to spend some time exploring this big idea we have concerning GRACE. You see, Martin Luther, began to explore this idea when he nail that theses to the door of the Whittenberg church. But I sure I’m not qualified to go on about this… let me show you something…
This is from Ephesians, chapter one: (look at verse 6—)
1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus through the will of God, to all the saints who are also believers in Christ Jesus:
2 Grace to you and peace from God, our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Who blesses us with every spiritual blessing among the celestials, in Christ,
4 according as He chooses us in Him before the disruption of the world, we to be holy and flawless in His sight,
5 in love designating us beforehand for the place of a son for Him through Christ Jesus; in accord with the delight of His will,
6 for the laud of the glory of His grace, which graces us in the Beloved:
I believe our whole message about God and His Christ should be mirroring verse 6… we should be singing the praises of God’s grace. But the vast majority of christian preachers and churches of all stripes are all about WORKS and SELF-HELP. They know nothing about God’s grace. They don’t know that WE ARE TO BE… FOR THE LAUD OF THE GLORY OF HIS GRACE.
You see, the “church” as we see it in the world has been throughly infected by the James Gang. As soon as some band of brothers stumbles into the evangel of grace, the evangel of our salvation… the James Gang comes along and goat-ropes them, corralling them into that works message and it’s just hard to cut loose and see what’s going on in the operation of God.
I think we can see the word GRACE in the “tip” we leave at the restaurant… right? It’s called a GRATUITY — and the word GRACE is hidden inside “gratuity”. So, the “tip” is not obliged, right? It’s freely given… supposedly. And the waitress (or waiter) is suppose to get a “bigger” tip if she/he does a good job.
And I think we can see that we’re kind of trained to think in terms of EARNING that “tip” — that “gratuity”. So, it would made sense that our natural thing would be to want to EARN God’s favorable eye toward us. But I’m telling ya… we got it all wrong.
(THANKS DANIEL… FOR KEEPING ME COMPANY)
God’s favor cannot and is not earned. And that’s what pisses most “christians” off… Any brother or small band of brothers, who prattle on about GRACE… they get attacked left and right be the James Gang.
The regular preachers… know that GRACE, (God’s favor bestowed on those who deserve the opposite) would lead to a universal reconciliation . If “GRACE” really means GRACE.
The know it innately. Because, if God saves one poor sucker, who deserves the opposite — out of grace — then He MUST save all — out of grace… or else “grace” is not really grace. It’s earned.
The “tip” you leave at the restaurant, was “earned” to some degree, generally speaking. So, we, in our human way of thinking, want to “earn” God’s kind favors, and thus we tend to mix law and works and GRACE.
I was thinking of the Freewill Chick recently and how she said she would not come back to our show because we didn’t let her get a word in edgewise. (Words to that effect.) We (or “I”) did let her speak plenty, but we just didn’t cotton to her James Gang message. Thus she was all butt hurt that she was casting her pearls before swine, so to speak.
But listen… Paul and the saints in the first century had the same problem. In fact, there was a HUGE fight in Antioch when the James Gang showed up there and tried to enslaved the saints in that “works” crap.
And Paul says “we don’t even let them blather on for one hour before we shut their mouths” — ya know, words to that effect. Here’s the actual text:
4 Yet, it was because of the false brethren who were smuggled in, who came in by the way to spy out our freedom which we have in Christ Jesus, that they shall be enslaving us-5 to whom, not even for an hour do we simulate by subjection, that the truth of the evangel should be continuing with you.6 Now from those reputed to be somewhat-what kind they once were is of no consequence to me (God is not taking up the human aspect)-for to me those of repute submitted nothing.7 But, on the contrary, perceiving that I have been entrusted with the evangel of the Uncircumcision,
I’m thinking… if you don’t know these guys are from the James Gang… you let them speak, after all, they seem to be regular ole brothers… but in less than ONE HOUR you can tell, they know nothing ‘about grace… they’re the law and works crowd. And you shouldn’t put up with that crap.
Those guys are not “for the laud of the glory of His grace” see Ephesians… 1:6.
Those guys are “for the laud of the glory of themselves and all they did to help God get to where He wanted to get to… they “seek to establish their own righteousness.” (Is that in Romans somewhere?)
Ok, we’ll pick this up later.
Grace to you.
Grace is humbling, when you come to realize it’s meaning and import. Very humbling.
24º out there.
The Ace Theological Company’s
Good Morning dear saints.
It’s 23º outside… but it should get up to 39º later, so some of the snow will melt off.
I would have started earlier, but I got sucked in to watch one of yesterday’s Ace Theo shows… this one: Monday Morning T.G.I.G (THANK GOD IT’S GRACE). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U4YbxNLDNoA
If you missed it… it was a good one. About grace.
Since were on the theme of GRACE… #15 in our pratting…
Let’s call this section #15 part B.
One of the strange and wonderful things about GRACE is that we, for the most part don’t see it or get what God is doing these days.
We come along into the faith, we grab the Bible, and we don’t realized that within the Bible’s pages… within it’s grand story, the whole plan, the whole itinerary has changed — right before our eyes.
We read all the Old Testament, and most of the New Testament, and there’s all this promise of JUDGMENT — scary judgment — fires, quakes, locust, lake of fire, floods, you name it, God is “gonna judge” sin.
And it sure looks like God has forgotten all about that judgment thing. There is so much corruption, sin and death going on in our world today. Sodom and Gomorrah thing, Noah’s pre-flood thing… Maybe God just forgot all about giving evil mankind a big spanking.
Well… I’m just here to remind you that what we see right now in God’s operations… is GOD’S ADMINISTRATION OF GRACE. It’s a SECRET thing. God doesn’t mind dealing in SECRETS.
And man, oh man, ain’t it somethin’ ??? See Ephesians 3:2-7
1 On this behalf I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for you, the nations –
2 since you surely hear of the administration of the grace of God that is given to me for you,
3 for by revelation the secret is made known to me (according as I write before, in brief,
4 by which you who are reading are able to apprehend my understanding in the secret of the Christ,
5 which, in other generations, is not made known to the sons of humanity as it was now revealed to His holy apostles and prophets): in spirit
6 (IN SPIRIT) the nations are to be joint enjoyers of an allotment, and a joint body, and joint partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus, through the evangel
7 of which I became the dispenser, in accord with the gratuity of the grace of God, which is granted to me in accord with His powerful operation.
So, God is not in the business right now of punishing sin and sinners… now, God is administering GRACE. And what a shock. It has to do, with how God is going to finish up his eonian purpose… and this administration matches and mirrors the final eon of time called “the eon of the eons”. That’s when GRACE will really shine. Right now, we’re getting a prequel of it all.
We’ll have to pick this up later. The subject is rich and deep.
Grace to you.
7:17 a.m. (end)
The Ace Theological Company’s
6:52 a.m. — 20º out, but it’s suppose to get up to 40º today.
Snow should melt off nicely. But tomorrow, looks like we’re getting more snow.
Wed, Dec 22, 2021
Grace and peace to you Dear One,
You know we have lots of opposers. I call them “the James Gang”. They’re a rough bunch. Mean mostly. They come right out of the pages of Dr. Eric Berne’s book “The Games People Play”.
They know nothing of the grace of God and the evangel of grace brought to us by Paul. They mostly want to have something over on you. That’s why they are so attracted to this “confess your sins” business.
The so-called “sinner’s prayer” starts out “confessing” you are a sinner, etc. Paul’s first prayer to the Son of God was: WHO ARE’T THOU LORD. — Way different than the so-called sinners’ prayer. And who, pray tell, was a worse sinner than Saul of Tarsarsus?
So, they certainly want to play “NOW I’VE GOT YOU, YOU SON OF A BITCH”…
(NIGYYSOB-according to Berne’s book)
But Paul recommend’s we deal GRACIOUSLY with others… as God has dealt graciously with us. Wow… that causes us to change our entire way of thinking about things.
Is God keeping tabs? Is God making a “list and checking it twice?” — NO boys and girls… your tab has been paid and God is sooooo happy to see you enjoying yourself. God is not reckoning your sins against you… as revealed in II COR 5:18-19.
Hang on… I’ll get the quote:
II COR 5:
18 Yet all is of God, Who conciliates us to Himself through Christ, and is giving us the dispensation of the conciliation,
19 how that God was in Christ, conciliating the world to Himself, not reckoning their offenses to them, and placing in us the word of the conciliation.
20 For Christ, then, are we ambassadors, as of God entreating through us. We are beseeching for Christ’s sake, “Be conciliated to God!”
21 For the One not knowing sin, He makes to be a sin for our sakes that we may be becoming God’s righteousness in Him.
Can you see how powerful these words are?
Contrast that to the James Gang message that YOU MUST do this and that and the other thing, or there will be hell to pay.
But we, we who know the evangel of GRACE… we should be gracious with others as God has been gracious with us. To a great degree, we don’t keep tabs. We don’t expect sinless, perfection, so we don’t even look for it… instead, we’re looking to God’s work in Christ’s cross — and THAT is what makes sense to our little minds. — God gives us faith about these things.
Why do those in the James Gang want you to “confess your sins”? And why does a catholic priest have a “confessional”. If you go to the confessional, and yak about your wrongdoings, you’re still all focused on YOURSELF… I don’t think that will accomplish much, to tell you the truth.
Morning Michael… nice to see ya.
What if… What if you “saw God”… instead of looking at yourself all the time? What if you saw God’s big picture? What if you saw God’s purpose and plan? Why do you have to “confess your sins?” It’s like you can’t stop talking about yourself. Sheesh.
I think the ultimate “confession” we have in the Bible is Judas hanging himself and falling headlong down that ravine and his guts spilling out. Is that a pretty picture of confession? Nope.
Listen, one day, in God’s purpose, He’s gonna fix all this stuff… and one day… in God’s timing, we’re gonna go up to Judas, and bring him some cookies, and say “Hey Pal, you were a stinker for betraying the Lord Jesus like that, but you know, without you, we wouldn’t have a RISEN SAVIOR… so, thank you sooooooo much for your part in this… we’re all so lucky God choose you to help bring this about.”
But Judas’ story IS OUR STORY too… Judas wasn’t the only one to put Christ on the cross… we all sent Him there. As, HE DIED FOR (because of) THE SINS OF ALL.
So, when the James Gang comes along, and tries to get your all sucked into guilt and depression and feeling sorry for yourself and sorry for your sins… they’re up to no good, I tell you. Telling you you have a “freewill”… and if you don’t use your “freewill” to do it all just right, there’s “eternal punishment” waiting for you. Those guys are both sick and mean.
As near as I can tell, Paul had to deal with those guys in every letter of his. Maybe in Philemon, he takes a break from battling those SOBs but, from Romans to Timothy, he’s warning us about their shenanigans.
Paul is fighting to make sure we understand the grace of God. Not works. Not law. Not you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours. No. Paul is fighting to reveal the plan and purpose of God. Centered in the cross of Christ… and all that it accomplishes both IN time and BEYOND time. The cross saves Adam, Pharaoh and all those Noah left behind. And the cross saves you and me and all those yet to come. It IS the work of God.
No one gets out of here alive — (a song from the Doors)
No one remains dead, when death is abolished — (a song from I COR 15:25)
Keep in mind, we’re going on about GRACE because, grace is the favor of God, shown and lavished on someone, anyone, who deserves the opposite of favor. And THAT is weird. That is not man’s idea. That is not “normal” thinking. Normal thinking is to reward those who deserve it. Perfectly understandable. But to reward those who deserve to be smashed, punished, whacked? What is God thinking? He must have some big, secret plan going on that He’s not revealed to us yet… right? Don’t we have a right to know what He’s up to????
Now get this… elsewhere in the scriptures we are told that “God is not partial”… YIKES… we know what that means… that means IF God shows GRACE to one poor slob… HE MUST show grace to all us poor slobs… and that means all slobs are going to heaven… and it’s gonna piss of the James Gang ‘cause they suspect they’re the only ones good enough to get there. And they suspect THEY are the gatekeepers to the whole shebang.
GOOD MORNING STERLING, NICE TO SEE YA.
So, the James Gang comes along, and they want you to confess your sins… admit you were wrong, promise to do better, etc. And then they’ve got you over a barrel. It’s both gaslighting and blackmail. YIKES.
Paul comes along and demands no such thing. He’s teaching men everywhere to REVER GOD APART FROM LAW.
Hang on, let me find the reference.
12 Now, Gallio being proconsul of Achaia, the Jews with one accord assaulted Paul, and they led him to the dais, 13 saying that, “Aside from the law, is this man inducing men to revere God.” 14 Now Paul being about to open his mouth, Gallio said to the Jews, “If, indeed, it were some injury or wicked knavery, O Jews, I might, on that account tolerate you. 15 Yet if they are questions concerning a word, and names, and a law of yours, you see to it! A judge of these I am not intending to be!”
See… they ASSAULTED Paul… and said “aside from the law, is this man inducing men to revere God” — oh how horrible… how shocking… we must do something…
I’ll tell you what I’m gonna do… I’m gonna close up shop and go make some breakfast.
Thanks for joining me. Sterling, Mike S. Eagle… etc.
Grace to you. We’ll catch up later.
The Ace Theological Company’s
Thursday, Dec 23 — whoa… 2 days before Christmas… yikes… I’m not sure I’m ready.
KSL says it’s 43 degrees out there, but I think it’s colder.
Regarding that 95 theses thing, I’m suppose to be complaining about the current sorry state of the so-called christian church.
But this morning. No. This morning… I’m gonna chat ‘bout something’ different.
16. MORNING NOTES ON PRAYER:
A most excellent morning prayer:
“Good morning Father, I love what you’ve done with the place.”
If you’re still in a chatty mood, you can add:
“I love the garden of Eden, I love what you did with Christ on Calvary’s hill, I love the Great White Throne, And I love You becoming All in all.”
You know, there’s plenty of time for prayers that are of the “please help me” type. — I’m thinking God kinda yawns at those prayers, they are after all, a “dime a dozen.”
(Speaking of a “dime a dozen” — we’ll soon have to retire that cliche as even the so-called “Dollar Store” is now charging at least $1.25 for everything. Who the hell knows what a “dime” is any more. Thanks Central Banks, you’re doing a wondrous job of printin’ money thus far.)
Oh, yeah… back to prayer…
Even Jesus, while on Earth, taught “give us this day our daily bread” (etc.) — so, I suspect, bothering God with your own personal requests is to be expected. But what if we can get to the place to where we realize that God does take care of all… can we move into a place to where we appreciate all that He is doing and will do… and that He is doing all. ???
If we look at the cross with any sense of wisdom, we can see that most awful thing on Earth… and we can see the most wonderful thing on Earth.
The cross is a picture — God’s answer to our hearts pounding.
It reveals God’s purpose and plan, both for His Son and for YOU… and all creation.
God says “Excuse me, but I have heard your complaints and I have an answer — BEHOLD.”
And thus we stare at the cross and we say “I don’t get it.” And we say, “How is this an answer?” And then 3 days pass. And our hearts are humbled. And the light dawns upon us.
Death’s fate is sealed. At the cross.
Death’s power us nullified. At the cross.
Death’s defeat is guaranteed. At the cross.
As I see it, every prayer, in which we plead with God to help us… is a prayer for death’s defeat.
Sickness? A prayer for death’s defeat!
A prayer for more money? A prayer for death’s defeat!
A prayer for safe traveling mercies? A prayer for death’s defeat!
A prayer for luck? Yep, a prayer for death’s defeat!
You see, death is our enemy. It approaches slowly and in a hurry. We know it’s our enemy. But according to Paul, it is also God’s enemy. So, you might ask, “How is it that death is God’s enemy?” God is the creator of life, right? I think I have an answer. I believe God is happy with life. Thrilled, in fact. But death is the opposite of life. And if God brings His creation to life, it grieves Him to end that life and return it to death. So, the whole plan and purpose of God is to put death to death one day. And the plan has begun. Have you seen what happened on the cross? Death’s fate is sealed.
Time to refill the coffee cup.
So, God has this big plan. This big idea. And if the only thing we look at is the Garden of Eden, and it’s disaster, our hearts are crestfallen. Every philosophy, every false religion, every manmade idea is built (at its core) the idea of getting back to Eden. Back before the fall.
But what if we see Eden, and its tragedy as “the perfect setup”??? The perfect setup for the cross.
The cross not only answers that story in the past (Eden) but is the perfect answer for all the stories now and in the future.
And what if the cross is the predominate feature of the “Great White Throne” judgment???
I know the modern day, grifting organization we call the “church” says the “Great White Throne” (GWT) judgment is where the sinner is assigned to endless conscious punishment. But, God went to a lot of trouble to put on this “cross” thing. Why would the GWT outshine the cross? It can’t. The cross is the GREATEST of all God’s judgments. Greater than the “great white throne” judgment. It must overshadow it and put it in proper perspective. We’re talking about the accomplishments of the Son of God’s love !!!!
After all, it’s a “white” throne, and it’s a “lake” of fire, not an “ocean” of fire. A lake is not much trouble. And “white”… that’s an attractive thing, don’t cha know.
So, we’re trying to throw some light on how we can approach prayer. Begging and pleading for this and that, is ok, I suppose. But as we grow, in the grace and knowledge of our Lord, why not do less begging and pleading and more appreciating — appreciating the things of God, like the EONIAN PURPOSE OF GOD. ???
The cross is God’s answer to our ultimate prayer. Our ultimate prayer is for the end of death and death’s train. And the cross, for us, is God’s answer… it’s LIFE and Life’s train.
God is patient and kind, says Paul.
And in patience… God is not in a big hurry to reveal that death’s fate is sealed. God gives some of us the eyes to see what was accomplished on the cross. But most look at it and quickly turn their eyes away. Either they are blinded by God, or they are fearful of what they see. Either way, “not for all is the faith” says Paul.
But, if we can see the cross and it’s accomplishments… or at least some of them… can our morning prayer be: GOOD MORNING FATHER, I LOVE WHAT YOU’VE DONE WITH THE PLACE. ???
It just seems right to want to “see” God in all things.
If you don’t see God in all things, you’ll just revert to complaining and murmuring. And no one wants to hang out with a complaining brat.
If I can’t convince you to see God… and curtail that complaining altogether… at least you can move in that direction. You can begin by saying”
GOOD MORNING FATHER, I LOVE WHAT YOU’VE DONE WITH THE PLACE, BUT IF YOU HAVE A MOMENT I HAVE A LAUNDRY LIST OF THINGS I THINK YOU NEED TO ADDRESS.
Now, that ought to be a good prayer.
Are you chuckling, yet? You should be.
All is of God. Says Paul. And death, is the last thing God will address as He becomes All in all. And that is when all our prayers will be gloriously answered. Oh my.
Check it out: — especially verse 26 and 28
I COR 15…
20 (Yet now Christ has been roused from among the dead, the Firstfruit of those who are reposing.
21 For since, in fact, through a man came death, through a Man, also, comes the resurrection of the dead.
22 For even as in Adam all are dying… thus also in Christ shall all be vivified.
23 Yet each in his own class: the Firstfruit, Christ; thereupon those who are Christ’s in His presence;
24 thereafter the consummation(:), whenever He may be giving up the kingdom to His God and Father, whenever He should be nullifying all sovereignty and all authority and power.
25 For He must be reigning until He should be placing all His enemies under His feet.
26 The last enemy is being abolished: death.
27 For He subjects all under His feet. Now whenever He may be saying that all is subject, it is evident that it is outside of Him Who subjects all to Him.
28 Now, whenever all may be subjected to Him, then the Son Himself also shall be subjected to Him Who subjects all to Him, that God may be All in all.)
Amen, Grace to you. Thanks for joining me for a few thoughts.
The Ace Theological Company’s
Friday morning, Dec 24th, 2021
Ya hit the wrong key and all computer hell breaks loose.
37º out there… the snow is still melting off, but a lot of it is gone. I can see grass on the front lawn.
High today, supposedly 42º
Now, with this little exercise, we’re suppose to be complaining about the organized “church” in the world. But what if we explore some of the “good” we can see there?
Sure, “churches” preach guilt and shame, and tribalism, and stuff… and sure some “churches” have started wars with other groups, even other “churches”… And sure, some folks have gotten so depressed from the message they get at church they commit suicide. And sure, if you listen to those guys, you won’t see God in a grand way… you’ll just “see” a petty god, who takes vengeance — eternal vengeance — on all those who don’t get with the program.
(From the side chat: Brother Lawrence says he’s been out of the “church” ‘bout 25 years. I say HOT DOG. Me too.)
So, it’s easy enough to find fault with those guys. But, ya know… all is of God. And God uses pretty much any thing and everything to advance His purpose. He used Judas. Pharaoh. Joseph’s brothers. He used Saul for “christ’s sake”.
And wouldn’t cha know it… He uses the Mormons, the Baptists, the Pentacostals, the Megachurches, the Catholics… He uses them all for His purposes.
Keep in mind, Paul tells us “Not for all is the faith.” (II THESS 3:2) — So, God is not about to reveal the secret to just any and every one in this administration of grace. But, God brings some of us along… and He brings some of us, out of organized church.
Even those who “come out of organized church” — like the Witness Lee guys, the Gene Edwards guys, and all the home churches across the world… it’s just very rare for them to give up the 4 doctrines they learned at “church”. Yeah, they meet in homes, around some brother’s living room… pray, read the scriptures, talk, have a pot luck dinners… but they never dump those four devilish teachings:
2. Immortal soul.
3. Eternal Conscious Punishment for the “wicked”.
I’m telling you… if they head down that road of challenging those four things… all their “sister” churches will hear about it and cut off fellowship… give them the “right foot” of fellowship.
You’re right Lawrence. We should not forget the TITHE TEACHING. — I’ve seen some of these home churches, NOT talk about tithes… but they aren’t against it either. It’s just NOT discussed. They’d never say it’s a FALSE TEACHING… and should NOT be taught… So, on the whole even the house church movement is full of poop. Nothing real except the outward appearances have been changed.
So, IS there anything good there?
Well, Paul says, “some are preaching Christ out of envy and strife.” Hang on, let me get the quote. It’s in Philippians.
That’s kind of hard on the eyes… let me change it:
15 Some, indeed, are even heralding Christ because of envy and strife, yet some because of delight also;
16 these, indeed, of love, having perceived that I am located for the defense of the evangel,
17 yet those are announcing Christ out of faction, not purely, surmising to rouse affliction in my bonds.
18 What then? — Moreover, seeing that, by every method, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is being announced, I am rejoicing in this also, and will be rejoicing nevertheless.
19 For I am aware that, for me, this will be eventuating in salvation through your petition and the supply of the spirit of Jesus Christ,
20 in accord with my premonition and expectation, that in nothing shall I be put to shame, but with all boldness, as always, now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether through life or through death.
21 For to me to be living is Christ, and to be dying, gain.
1. From v.15… some are heralding “Christ” out of envy… and strife… I’m thinking… how can you do that? How can you “herald” Christ out of envy? — Maybe… just thinking… maybe.. remember those scalawags in the book of Acts, who were casting out demons in the name of “Jesus whom Paul preaches”… and the demons said, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know but WHO ARE YOU?” And then pounced on them. Does that throw light on this???
Wait… if you’re envious of all the attention they’re getting as ambassadors of Christ.. (and you want attention)… then could those guys (the James Gang) be envious of that? After all, Paul, the prisoner, was more famous than they?
So, let’s think about Joel Osteen, or Joyce Meyers. Could we say that they are “heralding Christ” out of envy and strife? I know a lot of bible teachers, just want to “belong”… and the desire to “belong” is a strong motivator.
— reading Lawrence’s notes:
Honestly… I’m not sure I get Paul’s meaning when He says some are heralding Christ out of envy and strife… and he was OK with it, at least Christ is being heralded.
Well, I guess, talking with all these “church” people is a lot easier… since they are all somewhat familiar with Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. And they’ve heard of Paul (Like those demons). So, it could be better than starting from scratch in presenting the word of truth.
Like Annanias and Sappahria (sp?) who took Appolos aside and showed him a more correct way… since Apolos was only teaching the truth up to the Baptism of John.
Maybe we can be grateful for all these churchanity people, as showing them a more correct way would be easier.
Let’s be honest — I was “churchanity” before I peeled out of there and joined up with the Gene Edwards crew. And I was totally eat up with the 4 false doctrines mentioned above, when I read my first book from the Concordant Publishing Concern. (Eternal Torment VS Universal Reconciliation)
And Lawrence is right — FIVE FALSE DOCTRINES.
God brings us all along… and it may not seem like much to others but our own personal journey is AN EPIC JOURNEY to us. We are aware, of our steps and mis-steps. And when we look back, we’re sweetly grateful that God lead us down this path as oppose to that path.
I’m thinking here… can we say that Martin Luther, the original “95 Theses” guy… was preaching Christ out of envy and strife???? — Well, when you learn of the blood-letting he did to Zwingly and the Swiss Anabaptists…. You might think it’s easy to accuse Luther of bad motives. But, I’m old enough to see that bad motives come along (sometimes) AFTER good motives. I saw it in Gene Edwards.
Gene, like Luther, wanted to establish a movement that was more aligned with the truth… and once the movement got traction, Gene became somewhat unbearable. Headstrong. Self-absorbed.
SIDE NOTE: LAWRENCE… YOU KNEW GENE?
Listen… a lot of good came out of the Church in Isla Vista.. but plenty of folks just had to leave Gene’s work, because — you know… you just run out of money to buy new wading boots all the time, as the poop gets deeper sometimes.
God bless Gene Edwards, and Martin Luther, and all those who preach Christ out of envy and strife. I guess we need them boys. But sometimes, you’ve got to shake your head and move on.
SIDE NOTE: Lawrence, were YOU in the church in Isla Vista?
I was there from about 77 to 81.
Be right back… got to refill the coffee…
Howdy DB and St. Tommy.
So… this is weird… Paul says… “yet those are announcing Christ out of faction”
And he’s happy about it… well maybe not happy… but he can see the good in it.
And then this: Moreover, seeing that, by every method, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is being announced, I am rejoicing in this also, and will be rejoicing nevertheless. This Paul guy, I think he’s lost his mind… How can he be “rejoicing” when those yahoo’s out there are preaching “Christ” out of a sour motive? He must see something that I don’t see yet. Like maybe “all is of God”… maybe?
I think this is item #16 in our charge-ahead to bitch about 95 things regarding the Catholic Church and their step children the protestants, including the “home church” movement.
I’m telling you guys… brothers, sisters, inquirers, one and all, I don’t think I made in real “spiritual” progress in my life until I started UNLEARNING the trinity, immortal soul, freewill, and endless conscious punishment (plus tithing)….
It was THEN… that I began to BELIEVE GOD… and trust God concerning the outcome of it all.
Brother Lawrence says I still have a lot of UNlearning to do… to which I say “amen” and “bring it on”.
Now… regarding the 1st century church as opposed to the modern-day monster…. They met in the living room, at the park, on Solomon’s porch… etc. The did not have a building to pay for and pay taxes on … so they could be mobil and disappear in the middle of the night at the drop of a sword. So, the hang-loose meeting style was conducive to a back and forth that we cannot see today in our formal churches… with one yahoo up there in the front preaching away. Well… if we did as they did in the 1st century… we’d have a great deal more variety in our “doctrines” and understandings, and our spiritual journey. But every church out there, and most home churches teach those 4 (5) things right along with the whole camp of monkey(s)
- Trinity, is babble. No one can understand it. And it’s designed to make the preacher sound like he knows more that you. Kind of like when you meet someone in a given industry, (medical or high-tech) and they start using insider lingo… and you don’t know what they are talking about but you assume they do.
- And “freewill”??? It’s the most overrated blathering discussed in any conversation, religious or secular. “Free” will? Free of what? We are all influenced by many things… even the “craving” for sugar is quite often because you’ve got parasites in your body demanding you eat more and more crap. So are you eating those doughnuts out of “freewill” or the tapeworms releasing hunger hormones in your body and brain????
Freewill my ass. We all have a will. But it’s not “free” if causality and influence.
- Immortal Soul… myth. Can’t be proven. Based on hope and “dweams” … Now, we can’t “prove” that the resurrection from the dead is our future… but we can at least “have a pattern of sound words”… and the scriptures say our soul dies. But the promise is the resurrection. So, if the “church” pretends to love the Bible… let them quote “The Soul That Sinneth, It Shall Die.” Not that lingo from other religions. Let them teach “soul sleep”… in light of the promises of the future resurrection.
I realize that both are not provable yet… but, we want to match our belief with the lingo of the Bible, not the lingo of wild ass religions that come out of left field.
Christ was raised from the dead. If the “soul” never dies, why bother with the resurrection? It’s useless. So when Aunt Martha dies… and you’re invited to speak at her funeral… tell the folks, that one day, God will raise all, including old sweet Martha… at the great day… don’t be telling the audience that “Martha is in a better place.” That’s bullshit. Martha is dead. Her body will be returned to the soil. Her soul will return to the Sheol/hades/unseen realms from which it came. It was not conscious before, it’s not going to be conscious now. Consciousness is a result of The spirit joining the body, creating “the soul”.
The RESURRECTION is our hope… our message… We see it all in Christ’s work on the cross. Immortal soul business is not a “hope”.. it’s mythology that actually destroys and rips apart the evangel of Christ and the evangel of grace.
- Endless conscious punishment??? How can the “church” buy into that tripe? If it’s true.. then God must be punishing Himself endlessly.
HANG ON… LET ME CHECK SIDE CHATS… SIDE CHATS ARE FUN AS ALWAYS…
Regarding “soul” and “spirit”… it’s not proper to conflate them. The soul is more or less our 5 senses… our consciousness. There is not consciousness in our “spirit” as it is just the breath/wind of God.
Regarding Endless Conscious punishment… it’s just a half-thought out myth. If God is one… and all is out of Him, through Him and for Him… we must leave that notion behind, and pursue twooth… as best as we can. The idea that “God is one” not only defeats the trinity talk… but all the endless hell talk.
5. Now we get to TITHING. — Yes, you can find it in the O.T. but 1st century church was too wild, uncontrolled and always on the move.. and thus the James Gang had a helluva time trying to round up those guys to get them back under the law and paying tithes. But they keep trying. Paul was warning about the James Gang in nearly every letter of his. In Philippians he jokingly calls them “the maimcision” (see chapter 3, verse 2) — get it? In Galatians he wishes “they’d cut themselves off” … get it?
So, tithing is a thing… right… and it’s part of the deception. And if God can bring you to the place where you see that any one of these 5 things is a bunch of hooey — then you’re making progress… and you might even put on Christ, sooner or later. But if you get rid of all 5 things… man oh man… get rid of them and still “believe God”… you’re making some real progress and for sure, you’re going to get kicked out of “church”. … like it or not.
So… is there good in the modern day church? Yeah, like it or not… God brings many of us through those doors, and then back out again. And never forget, “all is of God.” It’s a tough, big concept, but twoooooooo none the less. See Romans 11:36.
Grace to you.
Until next time.
39º out there.
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