|Posted on Wednesday, January 10, 2001 - 7:16 am: || |
You are truely born of the "free woman" and will be there in the kingdom to meet all of us formers! It hasn't sinked in yet, but it will.
I have remined myself over and over again for every fearful and negative message SDAism gave me it will take repeating the positive messages of the Bible atleast 10 times for in to become part of my central nervous system. KEEP REPEATING THE MESSAGES OF GRACE that are there!!!
And from one mother to another, your ideas flow beautifully to paper. I know the look in your son's eyes and I can see your baby joyfully washing the dishes (with a full body experience!).
God Bless you today and always Shereen. It is always refreshing to hear from you.
|Posted on Wednesday, January 10, 2001 - 7:19 am: || |
GOOD MORNING MAX!!!!! Have a wonderful day.
Where can one get a copy of Bonhoeffer's book? Is it still in print?
|Posted on Wednesday, January 10, 2001 - 7:30 am: || |
BONHOEFFER RELATES IMAGINARY
CONVERSATION BETWEEN PASTOR AND
"CHEAP GRACE" PARISHONER
PARISHONER: I have lost the faith I once had.
PASTOR: You must listen to the Word as it is
spoken to you in the sermon.
PARISHONER: I do; but I cannot get anything
out of it, it just falls on deaf ears as far as I'm
PASTOR: The trouble is, you don't really want
PARISHONER: On the contrary, I do.
And here they generally break off, because the
pastor is at a loss what to say next. He only
remembers the first half of the proposition:
"ONLY THOSE WHO BELIEVE OBEY." But this
does not help, for fiath is just what this
particular man finds impossible. The pastor
feels himself confronted with the ultimate
riddle of predestination. God grants faith to
some and withholds it from others. So the
pastor throws up the sponge and leaves the
poor man to his fate. AND YET THIS OUGHT
TO BE THE TURNING POINT OF THE
INTERVIEW. It is the complete turning-point.
The pastor should give up arguing with him,
and stop taking his difficulties seriously. That
will really be in the man's own interest, for he
is only trying to hide himself behind them. It is
now time to take the bull by the horns, and
PASTOR: "ONLY THOSE WHO OBEY
Thus the flow of the conversation is
interrupted, and the pastor can continue:
PASTOR: You are disobedient, YOU ARE
TRYING TO KEEP SOME PART OF YOUR LIFE
UNDER YOUR OWN CONTROL. That is what
is preventing you from listening to Christ and
believing in his grace. You cannot hear Christ
because you are wilfully disobedient.
Somewhere in your heart you are refusing to
listen to his call. Your difficulty is your sins.
Christ now enters the lists again and comes
to grips with the devil, who until now has been
hiding under the cloak of cheap grace. It is
all-important that the pastor should be ready
with both sides of the proposition:
PASTOR: ONLY THOSE WHO OBEY CAN
BELIEVE, AND ONLY THOSE WHO BELIEVE
In the name of Christ he must exhort the man
to obedience, to action, to take the FIRST step.
He must say:
PASTOR: Tear yourself away from all other
attachments, and follow him.
For at this stage, the FIRST step is what
matters most. The strong point which the
refractory sinner had occupied must be
stormed, for in it Christ cannot be heard. The
truant must be dragged from the hiding-place
which he has built for himself. ONLY THEN
CAN HE RECOVER THE FREEDOM TO SEE,
HEAR AND BELIEVE. Of course, though it is a
work, the FIRST step entails no merit in the
sight of Christ -- it can never be more than a
dead work. Even so Peter has to get out of the
ship BEFORE he can believe."
--Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Cost of Discipleship,
|Posted on Wednesday, January 10, 2001 - 7:44 am: || |
You must have had your steaming Starbucks
You can get Bonhoeffer's COST OF
DISCIPLESHIP at virtually any bookstore. Most
Christian bookstores should stock the title. If
not in stock, it can be ordered by any
You have a great day too.
|Posted on Wednesday, January 10, 2001 - 11:30 am: || |
Hmmmmm, being saved already *sigh*
That is a concept I have been unable to adjust to. Don't get me wrong, I want to be able to accept the fact that I am already saved but I just don't know why I feel so unsaved. I so desperately want to believe this.
Boy, even the idea that this might be true is comforting. If only.....
|Posted on Wednesday, January 10, 2001 - 3:03 pm: || |
maybe think of it this way, as Paul stated in Romans.
Through ONE act of Man ALL Mankind FELL (Adam)
Through ONE act of Man ALL Mankind was REDEEMED (Jesus)
Through ONE act of faith, you (Shereen) were SAVED
Jesus doesn't have to die every time anyone commits a sin. He died once for all.
Likewise we do not have to "die" everytime we sin, because we are saved once for all time.
|Posted on Wednesday, January 10, 2001 - 3:14 pm: || |
Shereen, there can be no question as far as
Scripture is concerned. The kingdom of
heaven arrived on earth when the King of
heaven began his earthly ministry marked by
his baptism by John the Baptist.
Matthew 5:3›^^Matthew 5›Matthew
5:2-4›"Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs
is the KINGDOM OF HEAVENÓ^^ which has
Matthew 5:10›^^Blessed are those who are
persecuted because of righteousness, for
theirs is the KINGDOM OF HEAVENÓ^^ which
has already arrived!
Matthew 5:19›^^Anyone who breaks one of the
least of these commandments and teaches
others to do the same will be called least in
the KINGDOM OF HEAVEN, but whoever
practices and teaches these commands will
be called great in the KINGDOM OF
HEAVENÓ^^ which has already arrived!
Matthew 5:20›^^For I tell you that unless your
righteousness surpasses that of the
Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will
certainly not enter the KINGDOM OF
HEAVENÓ^^ which has already arrived!
Matthew 7:21›^^"Not everyone who says to me,
`Lord, Lord,' will enter the KINGDOM OF
HEAVEN, but only he who does the will of my
Father who is in HEAVEN,Ó^^ which exists
under our feet as well as over our heads!
Matthew 8:11›^^I say to you that many will
come from the east and the west, and will take
their places at the feast with Abraham, Isaac
and Jacob in the KINGDOM OF HEAVEN,Ó^^
which is the future part of the žnow and futureÓ
Matthew 10:7›^^As you go, preach this
message: `The KINGDOM OF HEAVEN is
near.'Ó^^ And it became real for all those who
Matthew 11:11›^^I tell you the truth: Among
those born of women there has not risen
anyone greater than John the Baptist; yet he
who is least in the KINGDOM OF HEAVEN is
greater than he.^^ This means that you,
Shereen, because you live under the new
covenant, are greater than even John the
Baptist, who lived under the old covenant and
was the žtransition prophetÓ from the old
covenant to the new. therefore, if the kingdom
of heaven has not already arrived, then this
statement would still not yet be true. But it IS
true! You ARE ALREADY in the kingdom of
Matthew 11:12›^^From the days of John the
Baptist until now, the KINGDOM OF HEAVEN
has been forcefully advancing, and forceful
men lay hold of it.Ó^^ If it had not ALREADY
ARRIVED, how could it have been žforcefully
Matthew 13:11›^^He replied, "The knowledge
of the secrets of the KINGDOM OF HEAVEN
has been given to you, but not to them.Ó^^
Those who believe and accept and are
ALREADY in heaven know the secrets of
heaven. Those who donŪt and arenŪt have to
hear about it in parables.Ó
Matthew 13:24›^^Jesus told them another
parable: "The KINGDOM OF HEAVEN is like a
man who sowed good seed in his field.Ó^^ The
wheat and the weeds grow together in the
fields that exist within the borders of the
KINGDOM HERE NOW.
Matthew 13:31›^^He told them another
parable: "The KINGDOM OF HEAVEN is like a
mustard seed, which a man took and planted
in his field.Ó^^ The gospel seeds grow ONLY
in the fields of the kingdom here now.
Matthew 13:33›^^He told them still another
parable: "The KINGDOM OF HEAVEN is like
yeast that a woman took and mixed into a
large amount of flour until it worked all through
the dough."^^ If the kingdom of heaven has not
already arrived, then Jesus would not have
spoken a parable of an event (salvation) that
occurs ONLY in the kingdom of heaven.
Matthew 13:44›^^"The KINGDOM OF HEAVEN
is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man
found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy
went and sold all he had and bought that
field.Ó^^ Where is the field located? In the
kingdom of heaven already here! In this
parable the field lies WITHIN the borders of
the kingdom of heaven.
Matthew 13:45›^^"Again, the KINGDOM OF
HEAVEN is like a merchant looking for fine
pearls.Ó^^ Again, in the parable the market
where the pearl is purchased is located
WITHIN the borders of the kingdom of heaven.
Matthew 13:47›^^"Once again, the KINGDOM
OF HEAVEN is like a net that was let down into
the lake and caught all kinds of fish.Ó^^ Again,
in the parable, the lake where the fish are
swimming is located within the boundaries of
the kingdom of heaven already here!
Matthew 13:52›^^He said to them, "Therefore
every teacher of the law who has been
instructed about the KINGDOM OF HEAVEN is
like the owner of a house who brings out of
his storeroom new treasures as well as
old."^^ And where is the house located? ThatŪs
right! In the kingdom of heaven already come
Matthew 16:19›^^I will give you the keys of the
KINGDOM OF HEAVEN; whatever you bind on
EARTH will be bound in HEAVEN, and
whatever you loose on EARTH will be loosed
in HEAVEN."^^ The NIV text note to this verse
says this: žPerhaps Peter used these keys on
the day of Pentecost (Ac 2) when he
announced that the door of the kingdom was
unlocked to Jews and proselytes and later
when he acknowledge that it was also opened
to Gentiles.Ó The KINGDOM OF HEAVEN
ALREADY EXISTED ON EARTH ON THE DAY
Matthew 18:1›^^At that time the disciples came
to Jesus and asked, "Who is the greatest in
the KINGDOM OF HEAVEN?"^^ This means
that in the Kingdom of Heaven Here Now that
those who behave in a sweet and innocent
manner are greater than those who behave in
a bitter and evil manner.
Matthew 18:3›^^And he said: "I tell you the
truth, unless you change and become like little
children, you will never enter the KINGDOM OF
HEAVEN.^^ In other words, unless you are
born again here and now you will never be
saved here and now.
Matthew 18:4›^^Therefore, whoever humbles
himself like this child is the greatest in the
KINGDOM OF HEAVEN.^^
Matthew 18:23›^^"Therefore, the KINGDOM OF
HEAVEN is like a king who wanted to settle
accounts with his servants.^^ NIV text note:
žThe kingdom of heaven is both a PRESENT
REALITY AND A FUTURE HOPE.Ó
Matthew 19:12›^^For some are eunuchs
because they were born that way; others were
made that way by men; and others have
renounced marriage because of the
KINGDOM OF HEAVEN. The one who can
accept this should accept it."^^. They have
become celibate not to get into the kingdom of
heaven, but in order to better serve God within
Matthew 19:14›^^Jesus said, "Let the little
children come to me, and do not hinder them,
for the KINGDOM OF HEAVEN belongs to
such as these."^^ The ground of the kingdom
of heaven is the property -- in a sense -- of
those who are born again here and now.
Matthew 19:23›^^Then Jesus said to his
disciples, "I tell you the truth, it is hard for a
rich man to enter the KINGDOM OF
HEAVEN.^^ In other words, many of the
wealthy people who, humanly speaking, are
members in good standing of the visible
church are not citizens of the true kingdom of
heaven that is among us who believe.
Matthew 20:1›^^"For the KINGDOM OF
HEAVEN is like a landowner who went out
early in the morning to hire men to work in his
vineyard.^^ In this parable the žlatecomersÓ are
the poor and the outcasts of society. They
receive their reward NOW as well as later.
Matthew 22:2›^^"The KINGDOM OF HEAVEN is
like a king who prepared a wedding banquet
for his son.^^ In this parable the wedding
garment is ChristŪs sinless perfection. It is the
robe that we wear here and now in the žnow
and futureÓ kingdom of heaven.
Matthew 23:13›^^"Woe to you, teachers of the
law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You shut
the KINGDOM OF HEAVEN in men's faces.
You yourselves do not enter, nor will you let
those enter who are trying to.^^ You cannot be
both a member of the Synagogue of Satan
and a member of the Body of Christ on Earth
at the same time.
Matthew 25:1›^^"At that time the KINGDOM OF
HEAVEN will be like ten virgins who took their
lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom.^^
The point of this parable is to žkeep watch,Ó
NOT žget ready,Ó as our Adventist friends tell
us. (Matthew 24:42 & 25:13.) For only those
who are ALREADY citizens of the kingdom of
heaven will recognize Him as their King and
not as their Enemy.
And so, Shereen, shed your Adventist mind
set and accept the Word of God as it is in
And all blessings to you,
Max of the Cross
|Posted on Wednesday, January 10, 2001 - 3:16 pm: || |
it's also funny how my sentence construction shows the history of man.
The first sentence is in ACTIVE voice:
Because of Adam, All of Mankind fell.
The second and third sentences are in PASSIVE voice:
Because of Jesus, All of Mankind was Redeemed (by Jesus)
Because of Shereen's one act of faith, She, personally, was Saved (by Jesus).
it directly shows it was OUR fault we fell, but correctly ascribes our redemption and salvatoin to Jesus.
Another thing that has been ever present since I have a lot of school loans to payback is the idea of redemption.
If someone, stepped in and paid all of my debts, do you know how happy I would be? Paid in Full! no more financial chains that seem to bind me in every area of my life.
Dear Shereen, that is what the Bible compares our Salvation to. God isn't just paying monthly installments on your debts (sins), He paid it in full on the cross. Jesus' blood covers all your sins for all time, to think it does any less would compromise the very fundamental basis of Salvation.
To say you are not sure that you will go to heaven would be comparable to saying that you think God has only paid for 1/3rd of your debts and you're not sure if you're going to be good enough for Him to pay off the 2/3rds dependent on your behavior. Does God act like that? No. But you know who does recommend that idea? EGW.
|Posted on Wednesday, January 10, 2001 - 3:20 pm: || |
here is my last and final thought: Grace.
Grace: Unmerited favor.
For God to save us only 98% would really compromise the meaning of Grace. In truth we deserve to be saved 0%. But! God saves us 100%! When you throw a life preserver to a drowning man, do you stop hauling him in 2 ft short of the boat? No! You wouldn't be saving him. Neither does God string us along with the promise of heaven and salvation only to cut us out at the end. It wouldn't BE Salvation, it would be the opposite.
Shereen, Jesus, Himself, told us that we are adopted children of God. God, is FAITHFUL, the personification of FAITHFULNESS. After we are adopted (when we become saved), He will never cast us aside. We are His Children. We are Children of Light. :)
|Posted on Wednesday, January 10, 2001 - 3:30 pm: || |
taken from the NLV
Matthew 18:23 "For this reason, the Kingdom of Heaven can be compared to a king who decided to bring his accounts up to date with servants who had borrowed money from him. 24 In the process, one of his debtors was brought in who owed him millions of dollars. 25 He couldn't pay, so the king ordered that he, his wife, his children, and everything he had be sold to pay the debt. 26 But the man fell down before the king and begged him, 'Oh, sir, be patient with me, and I will pay it all.' 27 Then the king was filled with pity for him, and he released him and forgave his debt.
|Posted on Thursday, January 11, 2001 - 10:37 pm: || |
SNAKE IN EDEN TAUGHT žCHEAP GRACEÓ
TO FIRST PARENTS
The Serpent in Paradise put [moral difficulties]
into the mind of the first man by by asking,
žHath God said?Ó Until then the divine
command had been clear enough [žEat not of
MY tree!Ó], and man was ready to observe it in
childlike obedience. But that is now past, and
moral doubts and difficulties have crept in.
The command, suggested the Serpent, needs
to be explained and interpreted. žHath God
said?Ó [Meaning] MAN MUST DECIDE FOR
HIMSELF BY USING HIS CONSCIENCE AND
HIS KNOWLEDGE OF GOOD AND EVIL. The
commandments may be variously interpreted,
and it is GodŪs will that it should be interpreted
and explained: for God has given man a free
will [!] to decide what he will do.
But this means DISOBEDIENCE from the
start. Doubt and reflection take the place of
spontaneous obedience. The grown-up man
with his FREEDOM OF CONSCIENCE vaunts
his superiority over the child of obedience.
[Just the opposite of what our Christ has
commanded!] But he has acquired the
freedom to enjoy moral difficulties only at the
cost of RENOUNCING OBEDIENCE. In short,
it is a retreat from the REALITY of God to the
SPECULATIONS of men, from FAITH to
DOUBT. The young manŪs [rich young rulerŪs]
question shows him up in his true colors. He
is -- man under sin. The answer of Jesus
completes his exposure. Jesus simply quotes
the commandments of God as they are
revealed in Scripture, and thus reaffirms them
as the commandments of God. The young
man is trapped once more. He had hoped
Jesus would offer him a solution of his moral
difficulties. But instead he finds Jesus
attacking not his question but himself. The
only answer to his difficulties is the very
commandment of God, which challenges him
to have done with academic discussion and to
get on with the task of OBEDIENCE. ONLY
THE DEVIL HAS AN ANSWER FOR OUR
MORAL DIFFICULTIES, AND HE SAYS: žKEEP
ON POSING PROBLEMS, AND YOU WILL
ESCAPE THE NECESSITY OF OBEDIENCE.Ó
But Jesus is not interested in the young manŪs
PROBLEMS; he is interested in the young
man HIMSELF. He refuses to take those
difficulties as seriously as the young man
does. There is one thing only which Jesus
takes seriously, and that is, that it is high time
the young man began to hear the
commandment and OBEY it. Where moral
difficulties are taken so seriously, where they
torment and enslave man, because they do
not leave him open to the freeing activity of
OBEDIENCE, it is there that his total
godlessness is revealed. All his difficulties
are shown to be ungodly, frivolous and the
proof of sheer disobedience. the one thing
that matters is practical OBEDIENCE. That will
solve his difficulties and make him (and all of
us) FREE to become the child of God. Such is
GodŪs diagnosis of manŪs moral difficulties.
--Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Cost of Discipleship,
|Posted on Wednesday, January 17, 2001 - 5:10 pm: || |
WE DO NOT TESTIFY TO OUR OBEDIENCE
TO CHRIST. OUR OBEDIENCE TESTIFIES,
RATHER, TO THE OBEDIENCE OF CHRIST,
WHO OBEYED HIS FATHER AND SAVED US.
--Max of the Cross, learning from Bohnoeffer.