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Hi to the family, from Papa and Jesus and me;

I love you all, and we are all one, being bound together by Papa’s love.

To err is human, to forgive divine. This is closer to the truth than you realize. It describes human nature. It does not imply guilt or wrong doing, only messing up, missing it, erring.

The only reason to ever feel guilty is if we offend another person. Then we need to make it right if we can, because love is the answer.

But Jesus says that Papa in not ever offended. So we can relax. We no longer try to make Papa happy by being good.

Grace, Papa’s very voice inside us, teaches us His ways, not a list of dos and don’ts.

When we look for rules to live by, we miss out, big time. We lose the benefit of Papa’s voice, because we are looking at the rules and not listening to Him.

So what about those who seem to be living in error? What is the standard?

The work of the spirit is to help us hear Papa’s voice, and show us His ways. But doing our own selfish thing works against Papa’s ways.

And He is always for us. How can we turn that away?

The world will not fall apart if we let the Spirit do its work. Surely we can trust Papa? Yes! He will never lead anyone away from His ways. This is called grace.

Help others learn to hear Papa too. If you try to make others fit your idea of how to find the way, you have gotten it wrong. Each one listens for only one voice – Papa’s!

Truly, the only reason to step in is when someone is causing harm. Harm comes from selfishness. It is the opposite of love and grace, and is not from Papa.

But love never fails. Above all, love each other! If it is love, let it be. Rejoice!

And now, from Papa, and Jesus, who loved us and gave Himself for us, and from me, your sister, love and grace.

 

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What does it mean to say that unbelief is a sin? Does the Holy Spirit really convict the world of sin? The word translated convict really means to reprove or to show, to convince, or even to prove. What would the Holy Spirit do to show or convince the world of sin? The word, convict, is a legal term. The law is gone, so convicting of sin is not what this is about. You can’t be convicted of violating something that doesn’t exist.

But on the day of Pentecost, Jews were pricked to the heart (there is nothing stated that the Holy Spirit did this) and realized they had not believed their Messiah had come – and many believed at that time. I’d call that a fulfillment of Jesus’ statement. They had missed it, but then some believed. That does not mean the rest of the world is sinning by not believing, especially when they have not even heard and had a chance to believe. The Jews had 3 years at least. And, again, the thing to remember here is that this is fulfilled!

Think about it. Does it sound like Jesus to say that there will be sin remaining after He did what He came to do? Preposterous. Only those who are still hung up on “sin” would say this.

The Holy Spirit came to call to mind what Jesus said. We did not hear Jesus in person, but we have the gospel witness, and the apostles. They heard Him, and knew God had said that Jesus was His beloved Son, and to hear Him.

It is not the job of the Holy Spirit to convict those in the world. It’s His place to show the believer the truths of God. I don’t want to split hairs too finely. In fact, I don’t think it’s possible or wise to try and figure it all out. My point is that we should not make the Holy Spirit into some sort of judge that convicts people by the law that they are not under.

When we, as believers, feel we have missed the target of godliness, it is grace, the divine influence of God in our hearts, which is showing us the truth. It does work by the Holy Spirit, I think, for the work of grace is a lot like the fruit of the spirit. Grace teaches us to leave ungodliness and follow godliness. It’s not done by convicting or by guilt, but by recognition.

Speak the truth even if your voice shakes

Examine Yourselves?

by Melissa Perez on Tuesday, April 5, 2011 at 7:16am

2 cor 13:5″ examine yourselves whether you are in the faith.(His faith, view yourself from HIS perspective) Test yourselves. (Test=dokimazo, root word dokimos=accepted,pleasing-this word was used to give name to men of integrity who during ancient times would not accept counterfeit money)

To test yourself is NOT to look to what is wrong with you, but what is TRUE OF YOU.

God does not want you to accept anything counterfeit that is said about you!He wants you to be one of integrity and accepet only that which is Truth and who is truth Jesus,That which is true of Him is NOW true in YOU

1 John 5:20 “And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us an understanding, that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life”

See we are to examine ourselves whether what we are believing is aligned with what HE KNOWS, because what exists in the mind of God alone is TRUE.

Philemon .6 says “ That the sharing of your faith may become effective by the acknowledgement of EVERY GOOD thing which is IN YOU in Christ Jesus“…

See our faith, will be as effective as our acknowledging of  the GOOD in US By Christ. Often times we read scriptures like the one above in corinthinas and think we are to make sure that we are not being” bad”, that we are trying really hard to be “good”, and we check for all our “sins” (which He NO LONGER REMEMBERS) rather than recognizing and APPRECIATING HIM IN US!

We’ve been taught to look at our “sin” when God doesn’t want us living sin conscious, BUT CHRIST conscious.

He wants us aware of what has been made right IN US!

He wants you aware of that which Christ came to redeem the image and likeness of God in YOU.

2 corinthians 3:18″But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord”

See it is in our BEHOLDING(constant) as in a MIRROR(revealing what is NOW) NOT a window (revealing what could be) that we are transformed into the same image.It’s in our acknowledging HIM and HIM IN US that we are awakened to experience HIS REALITY.

This is why paul could say “we regard NO man according to the flesh any longer”  because He had become so aware of a greater reality than that which He saw and even experienced in the physical realm. He had discovered CHRIST IN HIM which led him to preach CHRIST IN the nations. Galations 1:16

It is this truth that  moves you and over takes you, because you begin to see Him in the face every sinner and every saint.

We are to NOW regard (greek text eido– to KNOW) ALL man according to THE TRUTH=Jesus. 2 cor 5:16

John 1:4 states ” In Him was the life, and the life was the LIGHT (Phos- the TRUTH and its knowledge) of men” As francois says, Christ did not come to be an example for you but OF YOU! Through His living and His being He was revealing God’s intent for Man, our ORIGINAL design was and is revealed in HIM.

To walk in the Light as He is in the LIght is not about works, but about walking in this greater reality. To live in the place  where darkness has been dispelled and you can once again see and live aware of His imprint, His image, and likeness in YOU and in ALL creation. It’s in this place where competetion, strife, and condemnation ceases to exist  because mankind’s value is again revealed.

 Romans 8: 30 b – Those He justified, These He also glorified (literal text glorified To cause the dignity and worth of someone to become manifest and acknowledged)

You have been justified, that you may be glorified and your worth manifested and acknowledged!

Know that Jesus is God’s final word about man.

EVERYTHING He would ever need to say TO YOU, FOR YOU, or ABOUT YOU He has SAID IN CHRIST.

Hebrews 1:1 “God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets,Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;” 

Christ is His opinion of You!

He  is the revealing of God’s original design for man- which He has come and redeemed.

Discover yourself in His thoughts and do NOT settle for less than HIS OPINION OF YOU!

 

Religion and sacrifice, worship and service, seem to get confused.

We are in the spirit, and walk in the light, so when we worship it is in spirit and in truth, as Jesus said it would be. Out of our relationship to Him come our “acts” of worship.

We are the worshipers that the Father seeks.

Out of our worship come our expressions of true religion, such as seeing to the fatherless and widows, and keeping ourselves from the influence of the world’s ways (which just may only mean the ways of the law/Jewish system – and by extension pagan rites/ways – but necessarily worldly culture/technology, etc.)

James 1:27 Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.

This is an exhortation from James not to let the world’s religious ideas influence our spiritual walk, not as a command to be pure and/or to please God.

God is pleased with Jesus and He is pleased with us.

It is not a moral choice. It is living in the kingdom way, and comes from grace. Christ lives it through us and we live it in Him. It is the divine dance – perichoresis (peri-circle resis-dance). This term was used by the early church to describe the Trinity; we are part of it in Christ.

The agnostics of apostolic times said that flesh was evil – Paul countered this by saying we are good and acceptable to God in our flesh – for we are redeemed. The Jews were only used to offering dead animals on the altar, to be burnt up – Paul countered this by saying that there are no more acceptable animal offerings. Jesus’ offering was once and for all. We then live through faith in the Son of God.

Because God’s ways are not like the religious world’s ways, and because He loves and favors us, we are lined up with His program.

Paul says it is reasonable to be workers with Him, to learn His ways, to get a right mind in this, and to prove/show what His will is here on earth.

His work is supernatural and when we are joined with Him, we become His point of contact with the world, bringing His grace for salvation and healing.

This is important, because we frustrate grace when we try to do anything “for” God, thinking we are being “spiritual”, or becoming “more spiritual”. We are to walk in the faith that all we do is in Him and for Him. This is reasonable.

If we seriously think we can ever surrender our ALL to God, we don’t understand why Jesus died!

The NASB says: Romans 12:1 Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship.

J. P. Green’s Literal Translation says: 12:1 Therefore, brothers, I call on you through the compassions of God to present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, pleasing to God, which is your reasonable service.

The Greek actually says that he (Paul) invites them to present their bodies a living sacrifice, holy, pleasing to God, which is their logical service.

The word, spiritual, is not in the text!

The NASB (and a few others) get that from the word for service, which can mean ritual service in the temple. I know, it’s a stretch, but that’s what you come up with when you don’t recognize what worshiping in spirit and truth means.

These things matter. A bad translation can mess us up. It can have us running around, thinking we are worshiping God by offering ourselves as a living sacrifice, when this is not true at all.

We are already acceptable, and our worship is in spirit and truth, not in any sort of sacrifice.

No more sacrifice remains. Even alluding to presenting ourselves as a sacrifice is repugnant. It treads on the work of Jesus. Pure religion is not sacrifice, according to God. It is service to others. Get with His program.

Is there a balance between the word and the spirit? We hear this idea a lot, just like we also hear about a balance of law and grace. I passionately reject any balance or mix of law and grace. Does this hold true with the word and the spirit? Not a few good spirit-filled men and women of God have written that we should make achieving such a balance a top priority in our Christian walk.

Is too much spirit possible? Should it be equated with emotionalism? Should the word be equated with deadness?

Is this even the right question?

Perhaps the word and the spirit are the same thing, for they come from the same God.

My experience is that those who are truly baptized in and filled with the Holy Spirit are also constantly in the scriptures. The Holy Spirit makes them alive. Jesus leaps out of every page. Notice that I said the scriptures, not the word.

The Bible does not refer to itself as the word. Neither should we.

The Word is Jesus, and exists eternally, from the beginning, with the Father.

A further note: paganism emphasizes balance. Good and evil, yin and yang, body and spirit. I think there is a caution in that. Is balance something we should seek? Do the scriptures anywhere say to balance the written word and the spirit? I can’t find any. The only juxtaposition is in Ephesians:

Ephesians 6:17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:

This is not balance, but instead this passage says they are the same.

Here’s an insight from Bill Johnson of Bethel Church: ‎”Balance” was never meant to describe that place between joy and depression, between zeal and apathy. It is a useful term only when it describes equal measures of right things, like passion for the Word and the Spirit, passion for character and power. (emphasis added) From Paul Ellis, reviewing Bill Johnson’s book, When Heaven Invades Earth:

Few of us will doubt that the Holy Spirit can do great things, even through us. So why doesn’t He? According to Johnson, the main cause of the problem is found between our ears. We emphasize understanding over belief, reason over faith. This is fatal.

Often we are more convinced of our unworthiness than we are of His worth, or our inability instead of His ability. “The mind makes a wonderful servant, but a terrible master.”

God will never contradict His Word, but God is bigger than His Word. If we try and chart our way based on our own understanding of the scriptures, we will find ourselves living under law. That’s what happens when you prioritize boundaries over relationship.

Jesus never said, “My sheep will know my book.” Under grace we don’t get a road map, but a tour guide – the Holy Spirit. I love the way Bill Johnson said it at the  Manifest Presence conference:

“It’s difficult to expect the same fruit of the early church when we value a book they didn’t have more than the Holy Spirit they did have. It’s not Father, Son and the Holy Bible. No, this is the word of God, but you’ve got to understand… it is the Spirit of God that makes it living.”

God is more eager to invade this world than we are to receive the invasion. We sit and think when we could be praying and acting. We warn each other about the sin of presumption, while God warns us of the sin of unbelief.

We strive for balance and control and end up with the order of the graveyard. All this happens because we submit the things of God to the mind of man, instead of the other way around.  http://escapetoreality.org/2010/09/08/%E2%80%9Cwhen-heaven-invades-earth%E2%80%9D-by-bill-johnson/

What comes to mind is the passage in the book of Revelation:  Rev 3:16 So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.

We are not to be mixed in our belief, as in mixing law and grace. Neither are we to leave our first love – which is the grace and truth that came by Jesus.

He is the Word, not the scripture. The scriptures tell of Him, but they do not contain all He is. He gives us the Holy Spirit without measure, and it abides. Can we balance scripture and spirit? Not really. And we certainly cannot balance Jesus and the Spirit. They are one.

What do we have then? Is the goal to balance the Word and the Spirit, as many say? No. They are intertwined. We dance with them.

This is personal. It’s about that moment of truth that happens when you are totally unaware of its approach. You may have had glimpses of it, but dismissed it. Then suddenly there it is, staring you in the face and stabbing you in the heart.

This is what recently happened to me. I was coming home on the ferry, and saw the big screen that has video advertisements on it. An ad appeared for a seminar at my church, and then I remembered that something was said about there being an ad on the ferry for this event. But, I paled. I was suddenly glad that I was alone and no one knew I was connected to the church. Especially when my first reaction was an audible, “No way!” lost in the rumble of the boat’s engines.

Why, you might ask? Isn’t this a good thing? The answer for me is a loud and resounding, “No”! This is the second marriage/relationship seminar in less than a year. Everything in me wanted to scream, “I don’t want to be from a church known for seminars, but from one known for signs and wonders”.

It was bad enough when the bright red signs went up around town, for the first seminar. “Red Hot Marriage”, they read. And then every resident was mailed a bright red postcard advertising the seminar. It was held by a noted Christian author and counselor. When people asked if that was my church, I would just laugh and say I didn’t know much about it because I wasn’t married…..

Now we have this new seminar. It is given (but not free!) by a husband and wife team. They are Christian counselors, authors, and college instructors. They are highly renowned, and live in the area. The bottom of the screen on the ferry said they had appeared on many TV shows, including Oprah. I’m sure there will be a book table in the foyer. A smiling team of members are signed up to be hosts.

Did Jesus say to go and give relationship seminars, and therefore be happier, more spiritual, more dedicated to God, and spread the gospel and increase your membership? Did He say that books on spirituality tell of Him? Do we really need to learn to love, if we have the spirit of God, who is love, inside of us?

When I first believed, the people I fellowshipped with loved each other. We weren’t taught it. We did it because it was in us by grace, in our very hearts. It oozed out effortlessly. If it has to be taught, it isn’t grace!

What can be taught is who we are in Christ, and what we are called to do. Go, make disciples, baptize in Jesus’ name, announce the good news of the kingdom, heal the sick, liberate the spiritually oppressed, and raise the dead!

I hear preachers and teachers talk about how Christians can have the power of God in their lives. Most get it wrong.

True power is not love, or surrender, or service, or speaking fine words – or yelling a lot.

Here is what it scripture says:

Matthew 9:8 – But when the multitudes saw it, they marvelled, and glorified God, which had given such power unto men.

Matthew 10:1 – And when he had called unto him his twelve disciples, he gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease.

Matthew 28:18 – And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

Luke 4:14 – And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee: and there went out a fame of him through all the region round about.

Luke 24:49 – And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.

Acts 1:8 – But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.

Acts 4:33 – And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all.

Acts 6:8 – And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and miracles among the people.

Acts 10:38 – How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.

Romans 1:16 – For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.

Romans 15:19 – Through mighty signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit of God; so that from Jerusalem, and round about unto Illyricum, I have fully preached the gospel of Christ.

1Corinthians 1:18 – For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.

1Corinthians 1:24 – But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.

1Corinthians 2:4 – And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power:

1Corinthians 2:5 – That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.

2Corinthians 4:7 – But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.

2Corinthians 6:7 – By the word of truth, by the power of God, by the armour of righteousness on the right hand and on the left,

2Corinthians 13:4 – For though he was crucified through weakness, yet he liveth by the power of God. For we also are weak in him, but we shall live with him by the power of God toward you.

Ephesians 6:10 – Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.

2Timothy 3:5 – Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

Hebrews 7:16 – Who is made, not after the law of a carnal commandment, but after the power of an endless life.

Why is it that we think there is power in anything else?

I’ve heard some say our power lies in loving one another. Or that power lies in surrender to God. Or the baptism of the Holy Spirit (and this is actually right – if we walk in it). And on it goes.

Power comes from God through the Holy Spirit, and from the preaching of Christ crucified and risen – and the power is for healing, delivering, demonstrating the kingdom here now.

In that power, we do all things, including loving one another.

It’s not our power, but Christ in us, by grace and the infilling of the Holy Spirit. Grace is the divine influence on our hearts.

The full expression of grace looks a lot like the fruit of the spirit, in fact. Hmmmm…….

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