Receiving the Kingdom

16  But Jesus called them to him, saying, “Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them; for to such belongs the kingdom of God. 17 Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.” Luke 18:16 

The Dispensational Futurist have a great deal of trouble explaining these verses. They become very obscure as they puzzle about what appears to them to be an enigmatic statement. This is because their Kingdom is future and literal. Yet neither John the Baptists of Messiah presented the Kingdom as anything but present or in their words “at hand.”

The Kingdom is a spiritual one, with a spiritual temple. We were given just two spiritual sacred sacraments of spiritual communion and a spiritual baptism.

This is why the Kingdom is hidden, lost, full of weeds or full of bad fish. Only those who seek can find it. Only those who listen can hear it.

The Kingdom is present and spiritual but only if one has eyes to see and ears to hear.

Little children have no trouble with the concept that God is here and there,  everywhere in time and space. It is only when one becomes an adult with preconceived notions and grand expectations does the truth become clouded and mysterious.

We need to sit down open our hearts and receive the Kingdom as it is, and not what we want or expect.

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The Holy Spirit Possesses Will

All these are inspired by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one individually as he wills. 1Cor. 12:11 

The context of this verse is the giving of gifts by the Holy Spirit to God’s servants so that they may accomplish God’s will. If you want to take a full study on these gifts read our post on The Gifts.

Will, is the ability to think, with the purpose of planning or deciding on a course of action — ‘to purpose, to plan, to intend.’ It is our job to find out what those plans and purposes are so that we can use the gifts He willed to us to do His will.

Saviour (Savior)

second-coming2. . . for to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. Luke 2:11

Messiah is a helper, not your best buddy, not a sugar daddy, but a savior.

Our Savior was from the very first Christ the Lord or Messiah HaAdon. He was anointed as our Lord, as the only one who could “save us” from our condition as slaves to sin or fallen. See Also: In the Garden

Therefore as sin came into the world through one man and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all men sinned — Rom. 5:12 

21 For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead. 22 For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive. 1Cor. 15:21-22

We cannot rid ourselves of this condition. It is far beyond our abilities. Only a sinless man, a spiritual man, could make the sacrifice necessary.

45 Thus it is written, “The first man Adam became a living being”; the last Adam became a life-giving spirit. 46 But it is not the spiritual which is first but the physical, and then the spiritual. 47 The first man was from the earth, a man of dust; the second man is from heaven. 48 As was the man of dust, so are those who are of the dust; and as is the man of heaven, so are those who are of heaven. 49 Just as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the man of heaven. 50 I tell you this, brethren: flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable 1Cor. 15:45-50

FYI: For those who think that it works to believe in evolution and be a Christian take a hard look at those verse. Without creation being exactly they way it is described in Genesis you don’t have a spiritual condition i.e. “The Fall” to be saved from. Please take a look at the information provided by The Institute for Creation Research.

Constantine Issues the first Blue Laws

constantineThe Messianic/Hebrew Roots people argue a great deal about Sunday worship and Sabbath keeping. This is what we found in searching Constantine’s “venerable day of the sun” quote.

 

Phillip Shaff’s, History of the Christian Church, Vol 3 Nicene and Post-Nicece Christianity. AD 311-600

 

I think we have said this before, but ever Messianic/Hebrew Roots person should read this particular volume of Phillip Shaff’s huge work.

Temple of the Holy Spirit (part 2)

temple1Unclean

Last week we looked at our need for unity, and that we were given sacred gifts to accomplish this. Now we are going to look at our need to be ceremonially clean, Just as the physical temple needed to be kept ceremonially clean at all times, it was necessary to purge that which was unclean from time to time. Now that which is unclean must be purged of our souls.

As we become the temple of the Holy Spirit we must know what is unclean, and to first century Jews (those who kept the physical temple clean) nothing was more obvious than that the Gentiles were unclean. All of their ways were repugnant to the teachings of the rabbis. The rabbis ruled that the people could not even go in to the homes of Gentiles or eat their food, for then the people would become unclean. This is why Peter had to be given a vision so he would talk to Cornelius. [Acts 10] He simply had not got his head around “good news to All peoples.” It is also why we are adopted sons of Abraham and no longer considered Gentiles. [Gal. 3:7]

17   Now this I affirm and testify in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their minds;  18 they are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart;  19 they have become callous and have given themselves up to licentiousness, greedy to practice every kind of uncleanness.  

Gentiles and all their ways are unclean. Anyone coming in contact with something or one that was unclean was to wait till the sun went down and bathe before going to the temple. The New Testament never wants us to separate from these people physically, however we must separate from them spiritually. We must not live like them, with darken minds and ignorance. We must open our hearts to seek truth. For ignorance of God’s ways leads to hardness of heart, callousness, greed and licentiousness. All these things are unclean.

20 You did not so learn Christ! —  21 assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus.  22 Put off your old nature which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful lusts,  23 and be renewed in the spirit of your minds,  24 and put on the new nature, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness. 

Now Paul advises us to live a sacred life and remove ourselves from our former unclean life. This new life is righteous and holy and must be maintained, and the way to maintain that is give up the old unclean ways.

25   Therefore, putting away falsehood, let every one speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another.  26 Be angry but do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger,  27 and give no opportunity to the devil.  28 Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his hands, so that he may be able to give to those in need.  29 Let no evil talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for edifying, as fits the occasion, that it may impart grace to those who hear.  30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, in whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.  31 Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, with all malice,  32 and be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. 

There is nothing cleaner than Truth. All these things that keep us on the right path toward spiritual growth, must come from Truth. However right there in the middle is a warning of what happens when we do not keep out walk pure. The devil has an opportunity, and as the father of lies, he is not likely to ignore an opportunity when it comes his way. [John 8:44]

Be sober, be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking some one to devour. 1Pet. 5:8 (See Also Earth dust, Star dust)

Many a believer has lost their way, and has been devoured as a result. Just read some church history and you will see them everywhere. A little lie here, a little lie there, and soon they are acting in their own self interest. Then the whole body of Messiah suffers.

Unfortunately there is a chapter break here, leading many to think that there is a change in thought. However the thought continues and is the same spiritual purity and growth as before.

Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children.  2 And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. Eph. 5:1   

Just like all those sacrifices of the Old Testament were a pleasing odor to God, so our lives are to be a pleasing odor as Messiah’s. We are no longer our own, but servants of the living God. Freedom in bondage, something that is hard to grasp, until it is lived.

This is how one should regard us, as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God. 1Cor. 4:1 

Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, which you have from God? You are not your own; 1Cor. 6:19 

Temple of the Holy Spirit (Part 1)

Temple of the Holy Spirit (Part 3)

Temple of the Holy Spirit (Part 4)

Temple of the Holy Spirit (Part 5)