Author Topic: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)  (Read 5041 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

jabcat

  • Guest
Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« on: May 21, 2008, 04:33:22 AM »
I've been feeling "nudged" by God to let the Pastor of the denomination I've recently left know what's going on with me.  I'll admit, I've been fearful of doing so..you know, "what will they think of me, say about me, preach at me", all that stuff.  This is a wonderful man, tender-hearted, loves the Lord, but so far is apparently still veiled wrt UR (as far as I know).  He's a gentle man, but still brings up "hell" quite regularly, as in "trying to keep people from going there", not outright threatening.  This is a pretty large congregation, membership 1,000+, in which I had been very involved in the music ministry until I was no longer welcome to participate if I were to no longer "be a member".  I still attend Sunday AM's with my wife as a sort of compromise with her and the fam.  It's OK, but I don't know, I may sort of feel like a hypocrite sitting there and not being open about what God's been showing me.

So I finally sent this to him today (with fear and trepidation).  My wife remarked after reading it, "he may not get it, but I don't think he'll think you're crazy".  She seems to be very open to UR, but still has those life-long Baptist roots...she can go and not be real affected, just sort of like that, "water off a duck's back".

If there's anyone struggling with this decision, "to tell, or not to tell", maybe some of this will help you.  Feel free to use anything here you like, this is sort of a several month compilation of thoughts up to this point.  I'm sure God will teach me more and/or correct some of this in me as time goes by.  Sorry for the long post, if you're not interested, just skip it.  Hopefully it will be helpful to someone.  God's blessing, James.


Brother Tim, God has been dealing with me to send some information to you.  I do so anticipating misunderstanding and/or a conceptualization that I'm being mislead, unless it's God's timing to reveal it to you as well.  I know you love the Lord passionately, and your heart is right before Him.  You are my brother and I have respect for you.  Please accept this in love and gentleness.

In the past 1.5 years God has chosen to show me that He has a bigger plan than our orthodox beliefs allow us to see.  Scripture states it is the glory of God to conceal a matter, and the honor of Kings to search out a matter.  He veils and reveals, as suits His timing and purposes.  In His sovereignty He has chosen to reveal this to me.  I cannot be convinced otherwise unless He chooses to show me otherwise.  It has come alive in me as He has given it to me.  Conversely, I realize you won't see this and will reject it unless this is your time for God to reveal it to you, or perhaps His plan is for a seed to be planted within you now, which He will germinate and grow over time.  I just feel it is in obedience to Him that I need to send this to you.

I still know the cross of Jesus, His saving blood, His death, resurrection and Spirit indwelling, is our only salvation.  It's many of the things we've wrapped around those truths that God has begun to clarify.

I don't believe salvation is by some second "chance", or "chance after death", or "chance" at all, for that matter.  It's not "chance", it's as God wills, and He wills that all men be saved.  The Greek for WILL is thelo or thelema, whereas Wish is euchomai.  The early Greek texts of Scripture use theio or thelema, WILL, when it speaks of God's intentions.  He doesn't just hope or wish.  He WILLS.  What does he WILL?  "This is the will of the Father Who sent Me, that of all He has given Me, I should lose nothing, but raise it up at the last day" (John 6:39).  What has the Father given Him?  "The Father has given all into His hands" (John 3:35).
Neither is our salvation by us "choosing" or "deciding", but by God seeking and choosing us.  "For He chose us in Him before the creation of the world"   (Eph 1:4), and  "You have not chosen me, but I have chosen you..."  (Jn. 15: 16).
What we (stated nowhere in scripture) call  our "free will" is, I believe, God's allowing us a very limited ability to make "our own" decisions, and only as God allows and as it suits His purpose(s)..and only within the parameters He sets and options He allows... "A man's heart plans his way, But the Lord directs his steps" (Pro 16:9)...."For God has shut up all to disobedience, that he might have mercy on all" (Romans 11:32).

I have a concern for what was my own perception of, and our corporate characterization of God as a "loving Father" who would forever torment 90% of His creation (made in His own image, in which He breathed His very breath into our nostrils).  Admittedly, a reading of the King James Version, or many of its derivatives may seem to reinforce those ideas with their mistranslations from the Greek and Hebrew...also, admittedly, I used to believe those things, because that's the knowledge I had been given up to that point.  However, with the things God, in His providence is choosing to show me, I can no longer accept those things.  When looked at without the orthodox filters and traditions of men that influence our vision, they just don't fit what the scriptures actually say.

God has a much bigger plan for the ages than I had ever understood or given Him credit for;  that He will eventually reconcile all His creation to Himself.  Amazingly, that's what the Bible actually says. "And through Him to reconcile the all things to himself -- having made peace through the blood of his cross -- through him, whether the things upon the earth, whether the things in the heavens. (Col 1:20, Young's Literal Translation from the Greek).   Literally, the word we've called 'Hell' is the grave;  Jesus' earthly ministry was to the "lost sheep of Israel" ("and He answering said, 'I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.' Matthew 15:24);   Jesus did speak, to the Jewish nation, of Gehenna, a garbage dump on the outskirts of Jeruselam where corpses were thrown in disgrace.  Gehenna was used, just as Jesus said, during the fall of Jerusalem in 70 AD when the old religious order passed away.  The bodies of the Pharisees, those religious leaders who Jesus was warning and of  whom the parable of the rich man and Lazarus represented, were cast into outer darkness of the temporary loss of their privilege; there was the weeping and gnashing of their teeth; the worms really did live continuously and ate their flesh, while the fire burned and was not quenched until it had served its purpose (as did the "unquenchable" fire on the altar, the "unquenchable" fire that burned the martyrs, the "unquenchable" fire at the gate, that was unquenched until it was finished). 

The Revelation (the Unveiling of Jesus Christ)  clearly states it is a book of symbols, that it signifies, and does speak of a Lake of Fire in which one day, all of our works will go into that symbolic  divine fire of God's presence where we will be tested. Works not lead by the Holy Spirit will be shown for what they are, dead works. Many Christians will suffer much loss, but be saved so as through fire. (1 Cor. 3:15). Some few stripes, some many.  The greek for 'torment' is basanismos, meaning the touchstone by which gold was tested. Our God is a consuming fire, and all our impurities will be tested and purified in the prescence of the Lamb.  Our works will be destroyed but our souls will be saved in fire and brimstone (divine purification, Gr.) so that He may present us holy, blameless. Then at the consummation, God will be ALL in ALL . Paul lists three unmistakable and successive orders in which EVERY MAN is made alive. "But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at His coming....The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.  ...  then shall the Son also Himself be subject unto Him that put all things under Him, that God may be ALL IN ALL" (I Cor. 15:23-28).

1. Christ the firstfruits 
2. Afterwards those who are Christ's at His coming
3. Then the end ... all enemies ... all things subdued ... until God is ALL IN ALL.

Some now, what scripture calls the manifest sons of God, all later, in their own order...when all are sufficiently "tortured" ([basanimos], touchstone/tested) with "fire and brimstone" (divine purification) then "every knee will bow and every tongue confess (Greek meaning, DECLARE OPENLY, WITH JOY!!) that Jesus Christ is the Lord".  The KJV inaccurately translates that we can only confess Jesus as Lord by the Holy Spirit, which leaves open the possibility that it could be a forced bowing and confessing.  An accurate translation is in the Holy Spirit..it will be out of thankfullness and reverence that all the nations of the earth declare Jesus is our Lord, not from being forced.  "We hope on the living God, who is Saviour of all men -- especially of those believing" (I Tim 4:10.) " If I be lifted up, I will draw (literally DRAG, Gr.)  ALL men to me"  (John 12:32).  Through, by, because of, the cross of Christ...some now, all later, following our God's Consuming Lake of Fire, when every knee bows and gives joyful thanks!; and in so doing, finally enter the Kingdom through the blood covered cross of the Christ.  Following the Lake of Fire, Revelations 22:2 states the Tree of Life is for the healing of the nations.

Mistranslations and misunderstandings of the Greek words aion and aionios, which through the lense of orthodoxy is believed and taught to mean everlasting, eternal, world, ever, evermore, and never, are then lent to such ideas as "eternal torment".  The greek meaning of those words has to do with age/of an age, which have a beginning and an end;  and has much to do with God's plans of encompassing redemption  for the ages.

Also, we've mistranslated the Greek words Gehenna (garbage dump), Sheol (grave), Hades (mythological prison for mythological Titans) and Tartaroo (the deepest abyss of Hades) into the Dark Ages theology of "hell".  Unfortunatley much of our doctrines have been built around those mistranslations, which casts a negative image on our loving Heavenly Father;  who will judge all, but the end of the Lord is mercy, and His ultimate plan for the ages is to reconcile all His creation back to the Himself, and He will be all in all. 

Any believer is a member of the ecclesia, the "called out ones"..  Wherever 2 or 3 are gathered in His name, He is there.  We are to gather, to pray, to praise and fellowship, but  scripture says God doesn't dwell in temples made by hands.  We are His temple!  The House of God is the body, not a building.

This is not about individuals, but about what's called orthodoxy, the majority, the mainstream;  the church system and its 30,000+ denominations that are offshoots and patterns after the Dark Ages effects of the church of Rome. 

These scriptures don't make sense to us within our belief system of orthodoxy.  However, when looked at through unveiled eyes (glory be to God) there is no contradiction, and all scripture can be reconciled.

Jer 18:2-6........God mars vessels & then remakes them
Lam 3:31-32...God will not cast off forever
Is 2:2..............ALL nations will flow to the Lord's house
Joel 3:21.........God will cleanse blood not cleansed
Gen 18:18.......ALL families of the earth will be blessed
Is 45:22..........ALL the earth commanded to look and be saved
Is 45:23..........Unto God ALL will bow & every tongue swear
Is 52:10..........ALL earth will see the salvation of God
Ps 65:2-4........ALL flesh will come to God
Is 11:9.............The earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord
Ps 22:25-29......ALL will remember & turn unto the Lord
Is 25:7..............He will destroy the veil that's cast over ALL
Is 25:8..............He will swallow up death (ALL death) in victory
Is 25:8..............He will wipe away tears from ALL faces
Gen 12:3..........All families of the earth shall be blessed.
 
Eph 1:11..........God works ALL things after counsel of His will
Jn 8:29.............Jesus ALWAYS does which pleases His Father
I Tim 2:4.........God will have ALL to be saved
I Jn 4:14..........Jesus sent to be the Savior of the world
Jn 4:34............Jesus to do the will of God who sent Him
Jn 12:47..........Jesus came to save ALL
I Tim 2:6.........Jesus gave Himself a ransom for ALL
Jn 5:36 ...........He will finish the works He was sent to do
Jn 4:42............Jesus is the Savior of the world
Jn 12:32.........Jesus will draw (literally, drag) ALL to Himself
Rm 5:15-21....In Adam ALL condemned, in Christ ALL live
I Cor 15:22....In Adam ALL die, in Christ ALL live
Eph 1:10........ALL come into Him at the fulness of times
Phl 2:9-11.....EVERY TONGUE shall confess Jesus is Lord
I Cor 12:3......Cannot confess except IN (not 'by' as in KVJ) THE HOLY SPIRIT
Rm 11:26.......ALL Israel will be saved
Act 3:20-21....Restitution (Reconstitution) of ALL
Lk 2:10...........Jesus will be the joy to ALL people
Eph 2:7...........His grace to be shown in the ages to come
Heb 8:11-12...ALL will know God
Lk 3:6.............ALL flesh shall see the salvation of God
Jms 5:11..........End of the Lord is full of mercy
Rev 15:4..........ALL Nations worship when judgments seen
II Cor 5:17.......ALL becomes a new creation in Christ
Rm 11:32.........ALL subjected to unbelief, mercy on ALL
Rm 11:36.........ALL out of God, thru Him, and into Him
Eph 4:10...........Jesus will fill ALL things
Rev 5:13...........ALL creation seen praising God
I Cor 15:28.......God will be ALL in ALL
Rev 21:4-5........No more tears, ALL things made new
I Cor 3:15.........ALL saved, yet so as by fire
I Jn 2:2..............Jesus is the propitiation for the sins of the whole world
Rm 11:15..........Reconciliation of the world
I Tim 4:9-11......Jesus is the Savior of ALL, especially those that believe

God's blessing.


« Last Edit: May 21, 2008, 05:36:06 AM by jabcat »

martincisneros

  • Guest
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #1 on: May 21, 2008, 05:23:40 AM »
I'm praying it's that Pastor's time to see it, so that he'll read all of this, and rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory.

jabcat

  • Guest
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #2 on: May 21, 2008, 05:39:51 AM »
Old hymn...."joy unspeakable and full of glory, oh the half has never yet been told!"

I believe God will either show him now, or there will have been the seed planted that God wanted within him.  I understand that for someone in that position, the pastor of a large, mainstream church, there would be many major ramifications in his life...his job, salary, "reputation", lifelong belief systems...similar for many of us, maybe just bigger for some such as him....God's will be done.

Offline firstborn888

  • Bronze
  • *
  • Posts: 1080
  • Gender: Male
  • Not all those who wander are lost
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #3 on: May 21, 2008, 09:29:20 AM »
Old hymn...."joy unspeakable and full of glory, oh the half has never yet been told!"

"as I sit and learn at Jesus' feet - I am free yes free indeed"  :Sparkletooth:

- b

HappyBoy!

  • Guest
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #4 on: May 21, 2008, 08:21:17 PM »
Thanks for sharing this, jabcat.  I've only hinted around the edges with my pastor thus far after about 7 months of believing UR.  I study more and more each day and dig in deeper so I'll be better prepared when that day comes.

I had a very extensive conversation with my brother who thinks I'm on to something.  He's from the same funamentalist background I am and has been wondering about this as well. 

Also, my father-in-law and I shared a very good conversation.  He's a believer, but really never gave the doctrine of hell much thought. 

I think you've done a great job with the message you've put together.  Will look forward to hearing more about this.

jabcat

  • Guest
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #5 on: May 21, 2008, 09:35:05 PM »
Byron..."I have found His grace is all complete,
He supplieth ev'ry need
While is sit........

I have found the joy no tongue can tell,
How its waves of glory roll!
It is like a great o'erflowing well,
Springing up within my soul.

It is joy unspeakable and full of Glory...


Happy...Thank you so much, and it's encouraging to me to hear the successes you've had.  I got up today stressing about what the pastor's response might be...nothing so far...but like Martin posted elsewhere, we're not to be ashamed of the gospel, whatever the consequences, right?  Bless you and your brother...it sounds as if he's being unveiled as well.  James.

jabcat

  • Guest
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #6 on: May 22, 2008, 07:45:53 PM »
Well guys and gals, here's the response from the Pastor.


I appreciate the way that you shared your beliefs in a sensitive way, but I
must say that I disagree with a lot if not all of what you are saying.  I
have not had time to really sit down and give time to all that you have said
in your e-mail.  However, I intend on doing so.  I am sure my replies to you
will be received just as you felt how I would receive your e-mail. 
 
Just let me briefly say that I am not bound to any system or denomination.
I am bound to the Word of God as being my only authority.  I have bucked the
"system" many times because of what I feel the Word of God teaches.
However, I associate myself with this denomination because I choose to
fellowship with my brothers and sisters in Christ, which we have the same
common goals and purposes.  I don't always agree, nor will I always
disagree, but that is life isn't it?
 
That being said, the Word of God is the only thing that will stand up
throughout time, as the Word itself states (Matt 5.18; Luke 21.33).
Therefore, we must rely upon it for our wisdom and understanding.  However,
we must believe all of it and not parts of it for our own understanding.  I
also believe that what is given is all the revelation that has been given
and all that will be given.  There is no new revelation of God or the things
of God (Revelation 22.18-19).
 
One other thing, in reference to all the Scripture references that you gave
at the end of your e-mail, yes Christ was given as a blessing to all, but
only those who trust Him and repent of their sins will be able to be
reconciled unto God (I Timothy 4.10). 
 
If you would like I will answer some of your questions more directly in the
days ahead.  I am going on vacation next week and I would not be able to
respond until the following week more than likely.
-----------------

 
And mine to him--

Brother Tim, thank you for your reply, and I also appreciate the spirit of your response.  I agree with much of what you say, but especially including that all of scripture is to be taken into account.  That's one reason I can believe what God has been teachin me, because it does take into account all of scripture, if accurately translated, properly divided, and Spirit revealed.  I will respectfully disagree that God is not able to reveal more that's in His Word as He sees fit.  Always in His Word, never against.  Don't get me started  :wink:, that's one of the things He has had me take a stand on with others that also believe in Ultimate Reconciliation, as scripture teaches; that any teaching that can't be backed by scripture is in error.  I'm seen by some as the conservative traditionalist  :bigGrin:, believe it or not .  I  believe the passage in Revelation is specifically talking about "that scroll" or "that book", in fact that's what the scripture itself says.  It's OK if you disagree, I understand that.  Most of my life I would have disagreed as well.  Of course, please feel free to respond in any manner you wish.  I will say I probably have a pretty good idea of your beliefs, as I was saved at age 12, was raised a preacher's kid in the Assemblies of God, and had been in the Baptist denomination for the past 23 or 24 years.  But again, I do respect you and I know you love the Lord, and I will continue to treat you with respect.

I do want to assure you I have not "backslidden" or "turned my back on God".  In fact, it's sort of an interesting thing that has happened.  God's presence is becoming even more real, and He has lit a fire inside me that, even though I'm realizing even more His goodness and mercy, still compels me to seek Him and to walk in His presence.

Although He has called me away from orthodoxy, He has also convicted me that we are all still His body, and that I should not divide from other believers based on either their affiliation or their rejection of me because of affiliation differences.  You, Chris, etc. all still part of the body of Christ, so are my brothers in the Lord.

I don't really have a lot more I wish or feel led to say right now.   It's  OK, I was trying to be obedient to the Lord's leadership by sharing with you.  Some day we will all see things exactly the same, because God works all things according to the counsel of His will.
-----------

So what thoughts do you have, what do you see?

God's blessing, James.
« Last Edit: May 22, 2008, 07:48:43 PM by jabcat »

martincisneros

  • Guest
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #7 on: May 22, 2008, 10:27:43 PM »
Sorta sounds like John Wesley's response to Sir George Stonehouse [during their Cambridge days] upon reading Sir George Stonehouse's defense of the Universal Restoration, after John Wesley had encouraged him to put it on paper so that he could review it thoroughly.  I'll try to find the exact quotation later, but it was essentially the same type of response "I've got too much going on.  It would take too much time right now to answer all of this.  I'll write you a reply later." (Which it looks like he never did.)

Usually means someone's teeth have just been rattled by the truth.

John Wesley published two blatant UR tracts, and during the latter part of his life he was absolute best friends with Elhanan Winchester, which one of Winchester's earliest biographers found difficult to understand apart from John Wesley having fully embraced [and rejoiced with Elhanan in] the Universal Restoration.

Paul Hazelwood

  • Guest
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #8 on: May 22, 2008, 10:45:42 PM »
So what thoughts do you have, what do you see?

God's blessing, James.



Here is what I know.    When God drew me down the path to universalism it was one of the more painful adventures I had been on with the lord.   I grew up in a strict Southern Baptist home, and when I moved out I did not really go to church much, but my wife believed in eternal torment,  I raised both my kids along those lines as well.  So,  when I went down this path it changed the way I was looked at. 

I could no longer enjoy fellowship with many of my friends because almost every word out of thier mouth had to do with either salvation from hell or our power to choose our destiny so long as we pleased God enough to get it.  It was driving me crazy.  Since I was suffering from depression at the time, my wife and kids were concerned that my depression was causing my new beliefs and that I was potentially on the road to suicide.  With the details left out here, I can understand their perspective though.

However, that being said,  I left the church that I was in just because my beliefs conflicted so strongly I saw no point to remain and find myself throwing wrenches in the machinery all the time.  Doing so caused some conflicts I am ashamed of and I just did not want to be that way anymore.   I will not go into much detail, but God literally drug me out of church kicking and screaming, but of course HE won.  :)

Now, the amzing thing is, not that my wife and kids agree 100% with everything I say,  but they understand and contemplate the true love and mercy of our God. They also at least understand that God is powerful enough to stand true to his word for the salvation of all, even if we do not entirely understand it ourselves, or even if our flesh doesn't really like it.

So my main point is that,  while possible, it is not likely that this pastor will just throw everything out all at once and embrace what you wrote.   We cannot determine the time or manner in which someone comes to Christ unashamed and embracing his loving power to reconcile all things.  But, the fact that you were inspired to write him, was indeed for a reason, that much we can say for sure.  :)


martincisneros

  • Guest
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #9 on: June 05, 2008, 06:38:54 AM »
Hi Jabcat,

Any updates on this situation?

jabcat

  • Guest
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #10 on: June 05, 2008, 09:05:30 PM »
Hey Martin.  No, he went on vacation, and I sort of expect him to drop it with me directly, and maybe just deal with it indirectly here and there.  The Sunday morning after our email discussion, in his closing prayer he said something about "a world that's literally going to hell".  I guess no instant change.. :laughing7:.  But you know, I really do believe a seed has been planted, and it's according to God's will.  It may just be a gradual process.  I hope I have a chance to say more to him.  What I've been doing is putting together different bits of information for a response in case he does contact me....keep you posted, thanks.  God's blessing, James.

Offline willieH

  • Read Only
  • *
  • Posts: 2260
  • Gender: Male
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #11 on: June 06, 2008, 10:12:34 PM »
willieH: Hello everyone... :hithere:

I sent the following reply to brother Jabcat... and he welcomed me to post it...

As stated within it, there is no offense or criticism intended to James, rather a viewpoint to either consider or discard... if you choose to read it, you are welcome to do the same...  :happygrin:


    *************************  :cloud9: ****************************
***************************  :cloud9: ******************************
    *************************  :cloud9: ****************************

willieH: Hi brother J... :hithere:

RE:  "Sharing UR with the pastor (taking the plunge)"

I thought that I would PM you this response, rather than put it on the board... It must be read slowly and carefully, otherwise it will not reveal its intent...

I'm just a man trying to put into words, ETERNAL premises which have been revealed to me... and it is painfully obvious that I certainly have not mastered the way to convey it in simple and brief terms...  :mblush: :sweat: :mblush:

It will be in TWO PARTS...

PART ONE:

I've been feeling "nudged" by God to let the Pastor of the denomination I've recently left know what's going on with me.  I'll admit, I've been fearful of doing so..you know, "what will they think of me, say about me, preach at me", all that stuff.  This is a wonderful man, tender-hearted, loves the Lord, but so far is apparently still veiled wrt UR (as far as I know).  He's a gentle man, but still brings up "hell" quite regularly, as in "trying to keep people from going there", not outright threatening.  This is a pretty large congregation, membership 1,000+, in which I had been very involved in the music ministry until I was no longer welcome to participate if I were to no longer "be a member".  I still attend Sunday AM's with my wife as a sort of compromise with her and the fam.  It's OK, but I don't know, I may sort of feel like a hypocrite sitting there and not being open about what God's been showing me.

I totally relate to this J!  I wrestled with this very same thing as UR was revealed to me... It began with sitting through sermons which contained "HELL" as a passing element (not threatening, but as you note, the Pastor was certainly hoping to deter folk from this [abeit mythical] "place").

We ceased attending... and a month or so down the road, being the very caring Pastor he was (and IS) paid us a visit... He asked first, if either of us had been ill, or if there was some problem he might be able to help with...

I then told him that it was not a personal thing, nor did I stand in judgment of him OR the church... but that in my personal study, ...I had found much disagreement with the teachings of the church and those disagreements had made his sermons uncomfortable to endure...

He then asked for particulars... I proceeded to show him verses in the Word which disagreed with that which he taught... as well as the translations of GEHENNA, HADES, SHEOL and TARTARUS... to "HELL" as inaccurate and misleading.

Needless to say, he gently argued from his viewpoint against what I had said.  I then told him that it was his duty to be true to what he believed, and that I did not condemn him, rather, that I had devoted myself to the PERSONAL study of the Word, and IT had revealed otherwise to me... and that it was my duty as well to be true to what I NOW believe...

Both of us knew that we would not convince the other, and left it be, as it had been made clear to him, why we were not attending, and it was not of his or the church family's doing, rather it was due to revelation in the Word.

As time unfolded, he and the other church members continued to (and still do) pursue us, inviting us to do "special music", and to be involved in other musical programs...  Somewhat in denial of our stand spiritually... God bless the LOVE they have for us... but My wife and I cannot subject ourselves to the false teachings which they ignorantly propose to the members.  :sigh:

So I finally sent this to him today (with fear and trepidation).  My wife remarked after reading it, "he may not get it, but I don't think he'll think you're crazy".  She seems to be very open to UR, but still has those life-long Baptist roots...she can go and not be real affected, just sort of like that, "water off a duck's back".

If there's anyone struggling with this decision, "to tell, or not to tell", maybe some of this will help you.  Feel free to use anything here you like, this is sort of a several month compilation of thoughts up to this point.  I'm sure God will teach me more and/or correct some of this in me as time goes by.  Sorry for the long post, if you're not interested, just skip it.  Hopefully it will be helpful to someone.  God's blessing, James.

I admire your courage bro... and God shall bless you for the honesty and witness of your heart, which you have kindly revealed to your pastor...  :cloud9:


Brother Tim, God has been dealing with me to send some information to you.  I do so anticipating misunderstanding and/or a conceptualization that I'm being mislead, unless it's God's timing to reveal it to you as well.  I know you love the Lord passionately, and your heart is right before Him.  You are my brother and I have respect for you.  Please accept this in love and gentleness.

In the past 1.5 years God has chosen to show me that He has a bigger plan than our orthodox beliefs allow us to see.  Scripture states it is the glory of God to conceal a matter, and the honor of Kings to search out a matter.  He veils and reveals, as suits His timing and purposes.  In His sovereignty He has chosen to reveal this to me.  I cannot be convinced otherwise unless He chooses to show me otherwise.  It has come alive in me as He has given it to me.  Conversely, I realize you won't see this and will reject it unless this is your time for God to reveal it to you, or perhaps His plan is for a seed to be planted within you now, which He will germinate and grow over time.  I just feel it is in obedience to Him that I need to send this to you.

I still know the cross of Jesus, His saving blood, His death, resurrection and Spirit indwelling, is our only salvation.  It's many of the things we've wrapped around those truths that God has begun to clarify.

I don't believe salvation is by some second "chance", or "chance after death", or "chance" at all, for that matter.  It's not "chance", it's as God wills, and He wills that all men be saved.  The Greek for WILL is thelo or thelema, whereas Wish is euchomai.  The early Greek texts of Scripture use theio or thelema, WILL, when it speaks of God's intentions.  He doesn't just hope or wish.  He WILLS.  What does he WILL?  "This is the will of the Father Who sent Me, that of all He has given Me, I should lose nothing, but raise it up at the last day" (John 6:39).  What has the Father given Him?  "The Father has given all into His hands" (John 3:35).
Neither is our salvation by us "choosing" or "deciding", but by God seeking and choosing us.  "For He chose us in Him before the creation of the world"   (Eph 1:4), and  "You have not chosen me, but I have chosen you..."  (Jn. 15: 16).
What we (stated nowhere in scripture) call  our "free will" is, I believe, God's allowing us a very limited ability to make "our own" decisions, and only as God allows and as it suits His purpose(s)..and only within the parameters He sets and options He allows... "A man's heart plans his way, But the Lord directs his steps" (Pro 16:9)...."For God has shut up all to disobedience, that he might have mercy on all" (Romans 11:32).

I have a concern for what was my own perception of, and our corporate characterization of God as a "loving Father" who would forever torment 90% of His creation (made in His own image, in which He breathed His very breath into our nostrils).  Admittedly, a reading of the King James Version, or many of its derivatives may seem to reinforce those ideas with their mistranslations from the Greek and Hebrew...also, admittedly, I used to believe those things, because that's the knowledge I had been given up to that point.  However, with the things God, in His providence is choosing to show me, I can no longer accept those things.  When looked at without the orthodox filters and traditions of men that influence our vision, they just don't fit what the scriptures actually say.

God has a much bigger plan for the ages than I had ever understood or given Him credit for;  that He will eventually reconcile all His creation to Himself.  Amazingly, that's what the Bible actually says. "And through Him to reconcile the all things to himself -- having made peace through the blood of his cross -- through him, whether the things upon the earth, whether the things in the heavens. (Col 1:20, Young's Literal Translation from the Greek).   Literally, the word we've called 'Hell' is the grave;  Jesus' earthly ministry was to the "lost sheep of Israel" ("and He answering said, 'I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.' Matthew 15:24);   Jesus did speak, to the Jewish nation, of Gehenna, a garbage dump on the outskirts of Jeruselam where corpses were thrown in disgrace.  Gehenna was used, just as Jesus said, during the fall of Jerusalem in 70 AD when the old religious order passed away.  The bodies of the Pharisees, those religious leaders who Jesus was warning and of  whom the parable of the rich man and Lazarus represented, were cast into outer darkness of the temporary loss of their privilege; there was the weeping and gnashing of their teeth; the worms really did live continuously and ate their flesh, while the fire burned and was not quenched until it had served its purpose (as did the "unquenchable" fire on the altar, the "unquenchable" fire that burned the martyrs, the "unquenchable" fire at the gate, that was unquenched until it was finished).

I find complete agreement with this up to here... I would like to comment on the rest... feel free to disregard what I say, and PLEASE KNOW, that I mean no offense or disrespect in my comments. 

Along with that I commend you for your honesty and forthrightness toward your pastor and church, and you lead by example in this endeavor!  :clapping: :boogie:

Here are my observations on the following balance of your letter:

The Revelation (the Unveiling of Jesus Christ)  clearly states it is a book of symbols, that it signifies, and does speak of a Lake of Fire in which one day, all of our works will go into that symbolic  divine fire of God's presence where we will be tested. Works not lead by the Holy Spirit will be shown for what they are, dead works. Many Christians will suffer much loss, but be saved so as through fire. (1 Cor. 3:15).

This is quite hard to put into words bro... so please, if you will, bear with me...  :heat:

Above you mention the LAKE of FIRE to occur "one day"... This appears to be (correct me if I percieve you incorrectly), your thinking projects the LAKE of FIRE to be some "day" in the FUTURE...

The "Lake of Fire" is reserved and isolated, as a term in a SYMBOLIC book as you noted above... it is therefore, when SPIRITUALLY observed, not a "Lake" which is on "fire" (as would be the NATURAL inclination)... 

CHRIST is the LIVING WATER - giving LIFE... He is also a CONSUMING FIRE... removing UNHOLINESS... This "fire" is NOT NATURAL FIRE, rather SPIRITUAL Fire... which in its "burning" removes that which is UNACCEPTABLE in an HOLY environment.

Just as the Natural tree was not consumed by the SPIRITUAL fire, neither are we, in any way consumed NATURALLY... Our deeds however which appear in the Natural/finite  realm... unless they have SPIRITUAL value, are DELETED in the FIRE in which they NOW appear... for they are found UNSPIRITUAL and therefore Unacceptable in the SPIRIT/ETERNAL realm.

It is via these "deletions" that we shall be "hurt" of the 2nd death... for they are exposed before the Lamb and ALL the Holy Angels... NOW...

Let me explain:

NOW is the DAY of YHVH... (Gen 2:4) ...ALL generations take place in the DAY of YHVH, and that "DAY" is NOW...

We live and move and have our "being" (now) IN HIM... and IN HIS "DAY"...  HIS DAY is NOT in TIME... Time is the motion of deterioration in which the participation in  SIN decays us unto DEATH...

NOW, always IS... NOW is ETERNAL... and NOW is where ALL the WORK of GOD is contained... such as: 

NOW is the JUDGMENT (John 12:31), ...NOW is the "DAY" of SALVATION (2 Cor 6:2), ...NOW is the ACCEPTED TIME (2 Cor 6:2), ...NOW is the ADVERSITY of this WORLD cast out (John 12:31), ...NOW is where LIFE is contained (Acts 17:28),

Ironically, when TIME expires for each thing/being (its omega/end/death), NOW continues to BE, ...for NOW ...ALWAYS IS...

PAUL, noting NOW to be the "DAY" of Salvation... was not referring to a "day" in TIME... He was referring to ETERNITY... 

The natural observation would be that the "DAY" in TIME in which he stated this, would be the ONLY "DAY" in which one could be SAVED... but this of course, was NOT what he said...

His words are SPIRITUAL here, and the "DAY" of Salvation is the NOW in which we LIVE... not the TIME in which we LIVE... (hope that's not confusing  :mblush:)

TIME had a beginning (Gen 1:1-5) and shall have an END (John 6:44 & 65)... TIME appears in NOW, but is NOT what NOW is...

NOW is not found subject to TIME, for it PRECEEDED Time (John 8:58) ... we are found subject to TIME...

In NATURAL observation, many try to relate to "NOW" with that NATURAL observation and thereby bind it (now) to TIME...

But the truth is that NOW has literally nothing to do with TIME... TIME is the primary tool used in processing the decay caused by SIN, destined for DEATH... It is MOTION toward that end, and THAT is all that it is... 

In many ways, TIME is like a grinding wheel... the wheel MOVES continuously against the object, until the object is reduced to what the maker requires it to be... once the object, through the process of grinding, is found acceptable, the grinding wheel is no longer necessary...

The object is no longer in need of the Grinding wheel, the Maker is no longer in need of the grinding wheel, so it is discarded having accomplished its function within the agenda of the Creator...

NOW is the state in which LIFE (BE--ing) is experienced...

NOW is where TIME becomes involved in each of our circumstances,

It emerges from ETERNITY with the breath of GOD (part of Himself), 

BEGINNING (BIRTH in time) and ENDING (DEATH in time), only to re-emerge in ETERNITY (returning to Himself)

From DEATH (occuring in TIME) ...To LIFE (occuring in ETERNITY)... (again, hope that is not confusing!  :mblush:)

"NOW" is not a "future thing", nor is it a "DAY" ...in TIME... the LAKE of FIRE is NOW... as JESUS noted: 

(John 12:31) ...NOW... is the JUDGMENT of THIS WORLD, ...NOW... shall the prince [adversity] of THIS WORLD be cast out...

The JUDGMENT of the works of man as he BUILDS on the only FOUNDATION (1 Cor 3:11-15) is done NOW...  The BURNING (which is contained in human suffering) is done NOW...

NOW has nothing to do with the future or the past... NOW, has ALWAYS BEEN... and is without either.

Understanding this principle is the key to understanding the WORK of GOD, and the recognition of what TIME actually means...  TIME (with beginning and end) is the future and past of something... which has NO FUTURE or PAST... Rather ...IS... (with no beginning --- no end)  JESUS CHRIST...

He IS (NOW) the ALPHA (beginning) and OMEGA (ending), yet He has NEITHER of these within Him... He has no "beginning" and "no end"...  :dontknow:

END of PART ONE...

...willieH  :cloud9:

Offline willieH

  • Read Only
  • *
  • Posts: 2260
  • Gender: Male
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #12 on: June 06, 2008, 10:15:47 PM »
willieH: Howdy rowdies!  :laughing7:

Here is the conclusion:

:icon_joker:  ****************************  :icon_flower: *****************************  :icon_jokercolor:
willieH: Hi bro... :hithere:

here is PART TWO:

Quote from: jabcat
Some few stripes, some many.  The greek for 'torment' is basanismos, meaning the touchstone by which gold was tested. Our God is a consuming fire, and all our impurities will be tested and purified in the prescence of the Lamb.  Our works will be destroyed but our souls will be saved in fire and brimstone (divine purification, Gr.) so that He may present us holy, blameless. Then at the consummation, God will be ALL in ALL .

This "testing" and "consuming" is done NOW... This world is the "fire and brimstone" and where the correction (fire) is displayed and endured, and through suffering, the purifying is also displayed (brimstone), by the measuring of GOOD versus EVIL...


Quote from: jabcat
Paul lists three unmistakable and successive orders in which EVERY MAN is made alive. "But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at His coming....The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.  ...  then shall the Son also Himself be subject unto Him that put all things under Him, that God may be ALL IN ALL" (I Cor. 15:23-28).

1. Christ the firstfruits 
2. Afterwards those who are Christ's at His coming
3. Then the end ... all enemies ... all things subdued ... until God is ALL IN ALL.

GOD ...IS... ALL in ALL... time, is just in process of manifesting what already ...IS...

Quote from: jabcat
Some now, what scripture calls the manifest sons of God, all later, in their own order...when all are sufficiently "tortured" ([basanimos], touchstone/tested) with "fire and brimstone" (divine purification)

I definitely take exception to this.  :mshock:

GOD is not in the "TORTURE" business... the "order" of the manifestation of sons is done NOW... for in each LIFETIME which is spent in NOW... is that manifestation and correction taking place... which is the "fire and brimstone" contained in the EXPERIENTIAL lessons and SUFFERING we endure in THIS LIFE...  :reachout:

There is not MORE SUFFERING beyond this life... We are only enabled to serve CHRIST as HE ENABLES us to do so...

Of ourselves, our hearts are DESPARATELY WICKED (Jer 17:9)... and only DRAWING [dragging] done by GOD (John 6:44 / 12:32), can change each heart. 

WE do not CHANGE OURSELVES, nor do we SERVE GOD OF OURSELVES... He reveals Himself according to HIS WILL, in us...

We therefore cannot take any credit for WHEN or to what degree, POSITIVE change occurs in us (via the WORK of GOD), during this life... If WE did these things then the CREDIT due would be unto US... and subsequently GOD would then not get the GLORY for those changes...

This is the GREAT ERROR and mistake made by those BELIEVERS CHRIST spoke of in Matt 7:22

Many will say to Me in that day, Lord, Lord have WE not prophesied in Thy Name?  and in Thy Name have [WE] cast out devils? and in Thy Name [have WE] not DONE many wonderful WORKS?

These are seen taking CREDIT for CHRIST's WORK done IN THEM... and THAT is the INIQUITY CHRIST is indicating WORKING IN THEM

Quote from: jabcat
"every knee will bow and every tongue confess (Greek meaning, DECLARE OPENLY, WITH JOY!!) that Jesus Christ is the Lord".  The KJV inaccurately translates that we can only confess Jesus as Lord by the Holy Spirit, which leaves open the possibility that it could be a forced bowing and confessing.

On what do you base this brother?  The WORD states that confession of CHRIST is done by the HOLY SPIRIT... on what basis do you refute this statement of PAUL? (1 Cor 12:3)

What part of PAUL's "conversion" do you find was generated BY HIM?  :mshock:

GOD does not "force" anyone... He REVEALS us, ...to OURSELVES, and in admission of the knowledge and revelation of our wretchedness, brings us to our KNEES and then emerges our CONFESSION...

When a person is EXPOSED in a LIE... and finds remorse within that revelation... his/her remorse is NOT FORCED... it has been REVEALED, and CONFESSION relieves the sorrow contained in the REVELATION of his/her false witness... and that BROKENESS, provokes FORGIVENESS and MERCY...  :dontknow: :2c:

Quote from: jabcat
An accurate translation is in the Holy Spirit..it will be out of thankfullness and reverence that all the nations of the earth declare Jesus is our Lord, not from being forced.


Sorry brother, you must DISPLAY the INACCURACY of 1 Cor 12:3 ...by showing translation in the KJV concerning THIS VERSE, to be in error... or other Scripture which notes the observation this verse to be other than what it appears...

These following verses do not accomplish what you propose, ...that 1 Cor 12:3 is erroneous... It SAYS, what it SAYS...  :dontknow:

And accepting what it SAYS is what is on the table...

Because GOD has chosen us to be here at ALL and endure this realm of SUFFERING, is His choice, not ours...

If anything might be considered FORCED... it shall be BIRTH into this realm... not CONFESSION of Him as LORD... All that this CONFESSION contains, is an admission of what is TRUE...

YHVH is God and Father of ALL... and through His Son (His WORD), He has delivered the WORLD, from the realm of GOOD and EVIL (time), into which we eac of us (not by choice) have been, ...CAST!

Quote from: jabcat
"We hope on the living God, who is Saviour of all men -- especially of those believing" (I Tim 4:10.) " If I be lifted up, I will draw (literally DRAG, Gr.)  ALL men to me"  (John 12:32).  Through, by, because of, the cross of Christ...some now, all later, following our God's Consuming Lake of Fire, when every knee bows and gives joyful thanks!; and in so doing, finally enter the Kingdom through the blood covered cross of the Christ.  Following the Lake of Fire, Revelations 22:2 states the Tree of Life is for the healing of the nations.

As I said, these verses do not make your point...  :dontknow:

GOD chooses US, we do not choose Him... He has plainly noted this: (John 15:16)

YE have NOT CHOSEN Me... but I have CHOSEN YOU...

Quote from: jabcat
Mistranslations and misunderstandings of the Greek words aion and aionios, which through the lense of orthodoxy is believed and taught to mean everlasting, eternal, world, ever, evermore, and never, are then lent to such ideas as "eternal torment".  The greek meaning of those words has to do with age/of an age, which have a beginning and an end;  and has much to do with God's plans of encompassing redemption  for the ages.

Also, we've mistranslated the Greek words Gehenna (garbage dump), Sheol (grave), Hades (mythological prison for mythological Titans) and Tartaroo (the deepest abyss of Hades) into the Dark Ages theology of "hell".  Unfortunatley much of our doctrines have been built around those mistranslations, which casts a negative image on our loving Heavenly Father;  who will judge all, but the end of the Lord is mercy, and His ultimate plan for the ages is to reconcile all His creation back to the Himself, and He will be all in all. 

Any believer is a member of the ecclesia, the "called out ones"..  Wherever 2 or 3 are gathered in His name, He is there.  We are to gather, to pray, to praise and fellowship, but  scripture says God doesn't dwell in temples made by hands.  We are His temple!  The House of God is the body, not a building.

This is not about individuals, but about what's called orthodoxy, the majority, the mainstream;  the church system and its 30,000+ denominations that are offshoots and patterns after the Dark Ages effects of the church of Rome. 

These scriptures don't make sense to us within our belief system of orthodoxy.  However, when looked at through unveiled eyes (glory be to God) there is no contradiction, and all scripture can be reconciled.

Jer 18:2-6........God mars vessels & then remakes them
Lam 3:31-32...God will not cast off forever
Is 2:2..............ALL nations will flow to the Lord's house
Joel 3:21.........God will cleanse blood not cleansed
Gen 18:18.......ALL families of the earth will be blessed
Is 45:22..........ALL the earth commanded to look and be saved
Is 45:23..........Unto God ALL will bow & every tongue swear
Is 52:10..........ALL earth will see the salvation of God
Ps 65:2-4........ALL flesh will come to God
Is 11:9.............The earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord
Ps 22:25-29......ALL will remember & turn unto the Lord
Is 25:7..............He will destroy the veil that's cast over ALL
Is 25:8..............He will swallow up death (ALL death) in victory
Is 25:8..............He will wipe away tears from ALL faces
Gen 12:3..........All families of the earth shall be blessed.
 
Eph 1:11..........God works ALL things after counsel of His will
Jn 8:29.............Jesus ALWAYS does which pleases His Father
I Tim 2:4.........God will have ALL to be saved
I Jn 4:14..........Jesus sent to be the Savior of the world
Jn 4:34............Jesus to do the will of God who sent Him
Jn 12:47..........Jesus came to save ALL
I Tim 2:6.........Jesus gave Himself a ransom for ALL
Jn 5:36 ...........He will finish the works He was sent to do
Jn 4:42............Jesus is the Savior of the world
Jn 12:32.........Jesus will draw (literally, drag) ALL to Himself
Rm 5:15-21....In Adam ALL condemned, in Christ ALL live
I Cor 15:22....In Adam ALL die, in Christ ALL live
Eph 1:10........ALL come into Him at the fulness of times
Phl 2:9-11.....EVERY TONGUE shall confess Jesus is Lord
I Cor 12:3......Cannot confess except IN (not 'by' as in KVJ) THE HOLY SPIRIT
Rm 11:26.......ALL Israel will be saved
Act 3:20-21....Restitution (Reconstitution) of ALL
Lk 2:10...........Jesus will be the joy to ALL people
Eph 2:7...........His grace to be shown in the ages to come
Heb 8:11-12...ALL will know God
Lk 3:6.............ALL flesh shall see the salvation of God
Jms 5:11..........End of the Lord is full of mercy
Rev 15:4..........ALL Nations worship when judgments seen
II Cor 5:17.......ALL becomes a new creation in Christ
Rm 11:32.........ALL subjected to unbelief, mercy on ALL
Rm 11:36.........ALL out of God, thru Him, and into Him
Eph 4:10...........Jesus will fill ALL things
Rev 5:13...........ALL creation seen praising God
I Cor 15:28.......God will be ALL in ALL
Rev 21:4-5........No more tears, ALL things made new
I Cor 3:15.........ALL saved, yet so as by fire
I Jn 2:2..............Jesus is the propitiation for the sins of the whole world
Rm 11:15..........Reconciliation of the world
I Tim 4:9-11......Jesus is the Savior of ALL, especially those that believe

God's blessing.

I agree with the above brother... as I said, you are welcome to discard what I have noted... and I certainly welcome any questions of objections you may have about my notations..

btw... Great ending!  Many verses which attest to His GLORY!

PEaCE...
...willieH  :cloud9:

martincisneros

  • Guest
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #13 on: June 06, 2008, 11:48:07 PM »
 :goodpost: :goodpost: WillieH,

May the Lord open all of our eyes to the "NOW" of God in the Scriptures.  I'm dealing with that right now and am still dealing with some stubborn scales on my eyes about it.  There aren't enough of his writings available either through a genuine loss in history of the documents or someone deciding to hang on to them for a while, whether the RCC or someone else.  But from what scraps are available, Origen seems to have been wandering away from his beliefs in punishments spanning many ages.  But it wasn't the word "Now" that was making him consider various possibilities, but it was the word "Amen" and it's usage in Scripture even as one of the names of Jesus. Scarlett's New Testament even acknowledges a problem with the historic English translation of Revelation 19 which may have some baring on this subject:

His eyes are like a flame of fire, and many diadems upon his head: having a name written, which no one maketh known but himself.

They give a footnote on why they believed that "oiden" should be taken that way, as the Greek equivalent of the Hebrew "hiphil," which I don't think would necessarily be helpful here.  In Matthew 24:36 they translate with this same thought in mind:

But, with respect to THAT day and THAT hour, no one discloseth it, not even the angels of heaven, but my Father alone.

No one but the Father could fully convey to us the "eternal now" that began with the crucifixion and resurrection.

jabcat

  • Guest
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #14 on: June 07, 2008, 12:03:33 AM »
I told Willi I personally felt this was a next area of study for me, that I perceived God still had some things to show me about this...that what I posted was as of my understanding now, but with a sense of other understandings to come.  One thing that's been brought to my attention lately is the "Unveiling of Jesus Christ", the Revelation.  IF all these things are current, and the Revelation was a removing of the veil wrt Who Jesus is and what He had been and is doing, then something stumps me...what about the letters to the 7 churches, and how does that really fit with a personal "what God is doing in me now" POV?

It seems to me there's still a "is/was/will be" concept involved, at least to some extent, no?  Maybe that's our challenge, to know which parts are which, i.e., many things are, but many still will be?
« Last Edit: June 07, 2008, 12:50:38 AM by jabcat »

martincisneros

  • Guest
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #15 on: June 07, 2008, 01:00:27 AM »
I told Willi I personally felt this was a next area of study for me, that I perceived God still had some things to show me about this...that what I posted was as of my understanding now, but with a sense of other understandings to come.  One thing that's been brought to my attention lately is the "Unveiling of Jesus Christ", the Revelation.  IF all these things are current, and the Revelation was a removing of the veil wrt Who Jesus is and what He had been and is doing, then something stumps me...what about the letters to the 7 churches, and how does that really fit with a personal "what God is doing in me now" POV?

I'm not sure what you're referring to as far as the letters.  If it's the "those that overcome" statements that indicate rewards, I'm starting to view those as promises of what God is doing in your life now because no other interpretation really deals with the ego factor or the thought that my flesh can produce anything.  Those would have simply been John's version of Ephesians and other related texts from Paul because although it seems to have all been written by 66AD, you still couldn't go down to the local bookstore and buy reprints bound together in a single cover called "The New Testament."  And as far as the judgments in Revelation, those are manifestations in time of God's ongoing stand of faith against sin, the devil trying to steal the Word that was sown, etc.  The biggest part of the book of Revelation seems to deal with the eschatology of Jerusalem and not necessarily "last things" pertaining to Jesus, the Church, or even the world -- except in the way that the world deals with and relates to Jerusalem.  Some could try to say that Jerusalem in the book of Revelation is the Church, but then that gets confusing with an earthquake that kills 7,000 people, the city being divided into thirds as a result of the earthquake (Jewish, Christian, Muslim???) and other pesky details.  I would love to say that the book of Revelation was all a first century document comparable to 1Corinthians so that although we can draw lessons from 1Corinthians, we're not dealing with the same incestuous situation, and we're not necessarily dealing with the same ignorance on fire when it comes to the application of the manifestations of the Holy Spirit.  But when it comes to the book of Revelation and my difficulty with taking it all as a first century fulfillment, "the devil is in the details."

I do believe that we're transitioning from the Old Earth to a literal New Earth 'cause all of these tornadoes, earthquakes, tsunamis, and other issues are a good way (though not the way any of us would choose) of dealing with the depleted soil issues for farming, bringing new resources to light, and breaking down thousands of years of toxins that we've produced.

I would advise against making the mistake that I've made in the past with burning bridges.  If you're horrified by any part of the pastor's reply, try not to react.  If you're in any way going to maintain ongoing contact with this pastor either because of living in a small town, relatively speaking, or other family ties with the Church that make it unavoidable sometimes, or feeling really led to birth him into this message, then allow all kinds of time for future encounters.  There's all kinds of time for him to have the same amount of time as you've had to look at it Scripture by Scripture.  If Carlton Pearson's back on television any time soon, or anybody else that gets branded UR by religious fundamentalists, then you may get some questions about whether you believe the exact same thing about any particulars that might come up.  I find myself always giving this advise when it comes to preaching UR http://www.tentmaker.org/forum/index.php?topic=2753.0 that on the one hand, we're in danger of denying a part of the record that God has given of His Son if we deny UR, but on the other hand, try not to cram it down someone's throat.  I don't believe you've done that here with what you've shown this pastor, but oh! it can get tempting, particularly if he stays too quiet about it.

Prior to this incident, did you have any naivete about how ready other believers would be to embrace this message??  Or did you kinda already recognize the implications and how Christians might take it, if they were more married to their traditions than to the Scriptures??  When I first saw this, I was such a big mouth!  And I chased 'em over it too, like a hound dog that was coon hunting.  And I'd bark and bark and bark and bark and bark when I had them chased up a tree :grin:  Just the grace of God that none of them reached for a shotgun to come after me over it :mshock:  I was sooooo naive when I first saw this, thinking every Christian would be just soooooooo thrilled :laughing7:

jabcat

  • Guest
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #16 on: June 07, 2008, 01:16:17 AM »
I told Willi I personally felt this was a next area of study for me, that I perceived God still had some things to show me about this...that what I posted was as of my understanding now, but with a sense of other understandings to come.  One thing that's been brought to my attention lately is the "Unveiling of Jesus Christ", the Revelation.  IF all these things are current, and the Revelation was a removing of the veil wrt Who Jesus is and what He had been and is doing, then something stumps me...what about the letters to the 7 churches, and how does that really fit with a personal "what God is doing in me now" POV?

I'm not sure what you're referring to as far as the letters. 

I'm referring to the letters to the ecclesia in Smyrna, Pergamum, Ephesus, Thyatira, etc, beginning in the 2nd chapter...the "you've left your first love", "hated the works of the Nicolations", etc.

   
Prior to this incident, did you have any naivete about how ready other believers would be to embrace this message??  Or did you kinda already recognize the implications and how Christians might take it, if they were more married to their traditions than to the Scriptures?? 

Depended on the people and the relationship(s).  A few people I felt more comfortable with, mostly though, I've figured (and the Lord has led that way) that it be gradual, planting seeds...one thing I do with the band is I'll bring up verses like "the end of the Lord is mercy...God does not cut off forever", etc., and say "pray about this, not what I've always believed, but ask God to show you what He really meant when He said it"...Then there are others like the Pastor that I realize unless it's God's time for them, they're going to reject it and "defend their position".  I really felt led with him to put it out there in obedience, and let God be responsible for any results.

Offline willieH

  • Read Only
  • *
  • Posts: 2260
  • Gender: Male
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #17 on: June 07, 2008, 01:50:11 AM »
I told Willi I personally felt this was a next area of study for me, that I perceived God still had some things to show me about this...that what I posted was as of my understanding now, but with a sense of other understandings to come.  One thing that's been brought to my attention lately is the "Unveiling of Jesus Christ", the Revelation.  IF all these things are current, and the Revelation was a removing of the veil wrt Who Jesus is and what He had been and is doing, then something stumps me...what about the letters to the 7 churches, and how does that really fit with a personal "what God is doing in me now" POV?

The Revelation happens NOW... that TIME moves, does not effect Revelation... REVEALING is done NOW... and just uncovers to blind eyes, what has ALWAYS BEEN (IS) there...

It seems to me there's still a "is/was/will be" concept involved, at least to some extent, no?  Maybe that's our challenge, to know which parts are which, i.e., many things are, but many still will be?

WAS and WILL BE are TIME notations... Which are DIVINE condescensions made by what  IS...

NOTHING ever happens in the future... for the future is TIME yet to happen... and NOTHING happens in the PAST, which is TIME that already occured... ALL THINGS happen NOW...

We are bound by TIME... CHRIST is NOT... He (ALWAYS -- NOW), traverses and permeates TIME from its ALPHA to its OMEGA... for He is IT's (time's) Beginning and End, even though He has no beginning and end...

CHRIST just ...IS... Prior, During, and After, TIME...

Again, hope this does not sound confusing,   :mblush: ...its hard to put inta-woids...  :laughing7:

PeaCe...
...willieH  :cloud9:

Offline reFORMer

  • < Moderator >
  • *
  • Posts: 1943
  • Gender: Male
  • Psalm 133
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #18 on: June 07, 2008, 04:16:59 AM »
IF all these things are current, and the Revelation was a removing of the veil wrt Who Jesus is and what He had been and is doing, then something stumps me...what about the letters to the 7 churches, and how does that really fit with a personal "what God is doing in me now" POV?

It seems to me there's still a "is/was/will be" concept involved, at least to some extent, no?  Maybe that's our challenge, to know which parts are which, i.e., many things are, but many still will be?
Much of the writings of the N.T. are adressed to the Church in this or that city, God's practical definition for the Church in order to facilitate fellowship, rather than along sectarian institutional lines.  Cities are something of human gathering already there.  The believers gathering on out unto Christ are given identity previous to spiritual awareness.  While the cities of the 7 churches were spread out in a rough circle in ancient Roman pro-consular Asia, there arises from the relevant word expressed in those of God therein something remaining descriptive of our experience as the summoned unto God.

We are each "living letters" from God.  The call is God expressing Himself as the Word Who is His Image and Glory.  Those "called out" (Ecclesia) from all else are gathering to that call and being reconstituted by it.  Beings who quicken to life according to a message they bear are inscribing an aspect of the identity of the Divine Image and Glory in each of 7 lampstands that taken together are the stylized almond tree filled with oil upon which the fire rests but the tree is not consumed.  This tree is the bride and the body of God's manifestation called out in mud (Asia means "muddy, boggy.")  Ephesus, meaning "intimate embrace," is a gathering of habitations, a city, in which a branch of the tree has an Image and Glory presence in the boggy earth.  One possibility here is a degraded familiarity that takes for granted the intimacy that once ignited passion; which, if not returned to, could result in the whole calling being dislocated from it's place.  The 2nd branch of fire is Smyrna, meaning "myrrh."   This fragrance carried on wind is spirit making to live as a result of experiencing Jesus death.  Here is a call to be faithfull, suffering unto death.  The overcomer over all that is other than the Divine nature expressed herein will not be hurt of the 2nd death.   Each of the 7 branches has a promise describing an aspect of complete salvation, things obtained by maturity in being all Jesus is and doing all Jesus does.  Who is victorious in "brotherly love" (Philadelphia) over all that destroys us Jesus is saying, "I will make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name."

This is a scratch the surface introduction to hint the way to how I understand the present relevance of the Letters to the 7 Churches of Revelation 2 and 3.
« Last Edit: June 07, 2008, 04:33:17 AM by reFORMer »
I went to church; but, the Church wasn't on the program!  JESUS WANTS HIS BODY BACK!!  MEET WITHOUT HUMAN HEADSHIP!!!

martincisneros

  • Guest
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #19 on: June 07, 2008, 04:47:04 AM »
Much of the writings of the N.T. are adressed to the Church in this or that city, God's practical definition for the Church in order to facilitate fellowship, rather than along sectarian institutional lines.  Cities are something of human gathering already there.  The believers gathering on out unto Christ are given identity previous to spiritual awareness.  While the cities of the 7 churches were spread out in a rough circle in ancient Roman pro-consular Asia, there arises from the relevant word expressed in those of God therein something remaining descriptive of our experience as the summoned unto God.

We are each "living letters" from God.  The call is God expressing Himself as the Word Who is His Image and Glory.  Those "called out" (Ecclesia) from all else are gathering to that call and being reconstituted by it.  Beings who quicken to life according to a message they bear are inscribing an aspect of the identity of the Divine Image and Glory in each of 7 lampstands that taken together are the stylized almond tree filled with oil upon which the fire rests but the tree is not consumed.  This tree is the bride and the body of God's manifestation called out in mud (Asia means "muddy, boggy.")  Ephesus, meaning "intimate embrace," is a gathering of habitations, a city, in which a branch of the tree has an Image and Glory presence in the boggy earth.  One possibility here is a degraded familiarity that takes for granted the intimacy that once ignited passion; which, if not returned to, could result in the whole calling being dislocated from it's place.  The 2nd branch of fire is Smyrna, meaning "myrrh."   This fragrance carried on wind is spirit making to live as a result of experiencing Jesus death.  Here is a call to be faithfull, suffering unto death.  The overcomer over all that is other than the Divine nature expressed herein will not be hurt of the 2nd death.   Each of the 7 branches has a promise describing an aspect of complete salvation, things obtained by maturity in being all Jesus is and doing all Jesus does.  Who is victorious in "brotherly love" (Philadelphia) over all that destroys us Jesus is saying, "I will make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name."


 :goodpost: very moving

Offline reFORMer

  • < Moderator >
  • *
  • Posts: 1943
  • Gender: Male
  • Psalm 133
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #20 on: June 07, 2008, 08:02:48 AM »
I'd like to add that to open out our understanding of the 7 Letters they are like other sets of things in the Word that can be compared:  the 1st of each list corresponds to the 1st in any other list and so on through each number.  For instance, the 2nd day, 2nd beatitude, 2nd fruit of the Spirit, 2nd work of the flesh, 2nd planet (even things in nature) and such have a certain equivalency.  The 3rd is always reurrection.  Here it is Pergamos which means a citadel.  That is an unimpregnable "tabernacle."  ...etc.

This is much deeper than even these lists.  Amazing Discoveries in the Words of Jesus by Gordon Lindsay (Christ For The Nations, Inc., Dallas, TX  75224) is a compilation of just Jesus' words and deeds.

For instance, there are 21 sets of 7 commandments of Jesus.  In the 21 sets of 7's relating to the miracles of Jesus, there are 2 sets of 7 of His words concerning the raising of Lazarus.

There are 49 parables of the kingdom of God, 7 sets of 7's.  To illustrate, these are:  1. parable of the son of man; 2. parables of repentance; 3. parables of instruction to true believers; 4. parables of the working of evil in the kingdom of heaven; 5. parables of the rejection of the son of man; 6. parables of the 2nd coming of the son of man; 7. parables of judgment.

So also the miracles recorded are 49, or 7 x 7.  Of the 49, the last set of 7 miracles are those wrought not directly by Him--but to attest His Divinity.  These are:  1. The guidance of the Magi by star to bethlehem; 2. The signs at His baptism; 3. The sign at His transfiguration; 4. The answer to His prayer (John 12:28-30); 5. The signs at His death; 6. The signs at His resurrection; 7. The signs at His ascension.

Also 7 x 7 persons Jesus conversed with.

This is by no means a complete list of even just Jesus' words.  It is only a taste.
« Last Edit: June 07, 2008, 03:59:04 PM by reFORMer »
I went to church; but, the Church wasn't on the program!  JESUS WANTS HIS BODY BACK!!  MEET WITHOUT HUMAN HEADSHIP!!!

jabcat

  • Guest
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #21 on: June 07, 2008, 09:16:36 AM »
Keep going...Martin, maybe a new thread and let James roll?

jabcat

  • Guest
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #22 on: June 07, 2008, 12:00:19 PM »
Further hijacking my own thread...Martin, will you do something with all this so the "Sharing UR" thread can survive, 'cause hopefully there's more to come  :laughing7:.

Copied this from CLT, A.E. Knoch's take on The Unveiling...presented for further thought and discussion.

THE TIME PERIODS OF THE UNVEILING


The chart is designed to give, at one glance, all the time periods mentioned or referred to, from the grand eons or ages down to the days of Daniel's visions. In order to accomplish this the short era of judgment at the inception of the Lord's Day is expanded, as indicated by the oblique lines. In this era most of the events in this scroll occur.
     The Eons or Ages are five in number. This scroll is a prophecy covering the last two, which, as they spring out of the first three, are called "the eons of the eons" (1:6, 18, 4:9, 10, 5:13, 7:12, 10:6, 11:15, 14:11, 15:7, 19:3, 20:10, 22:5).
     The first of these two eons includes the day of the Lord, the second the Day of God. The present is Man's Day (1Co.4:3).
     The Seventy Heptads, or "Weeks", are foretold in Daniel (9:24). From the twentieth year of Artaxerxes (Neh.2:1,5), to Christ's entry into Jerusalem (Lu.19:37, 44) was a period of exactly 173,880 days, or 69 heptads of years, counting 360 days to a year. The seventieth heptad is still future (Dan.9:26). Daniel divides it in half by the breaking of a treaty when the sacrifice and gift offering are stopped (Dan.9:27). This leaves us the period often referred to in this scroll of 42 months (11:2, 13:5), 1260 days (11:3, 12:6), and "season, seasons and half a season" (12:14). These are principally in the last half of the heptad. The middle of the heptad is the beginning of most of the movements in this scroll and the end closes them.
     This prophecy is not given in chronological order, but gives a general view under the Seals, expands the seventh seal under the Trumpets, and probably expands the seventh Trumpet under the Bowls. The end of the seventieth heptad is reached at least five times, and the narrative goes back again to fill in further details.
     The days after Christ's epiphany are taken from Daniel's prophecy.   A.E. Knoch.




martincisneros

  • Guest
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #23 on: November 14, 2008, 06:21:55 AM »
Not sure why this thread ever quit.  I think we just got busy and forgot about it, but there's a lot of really good stuff here.  And by the way, although I've said it before, this is several months later so I'll repeat it:

Hi Jabcat,

Any updates on this situation?

Offline jabcat

  • Admin
  • *
  • Posts: 9085
  • SINNER SAVED BY GRACE
Re: Sharing UR With The Pastor (Taking The Plunge)
« Reply #24 on: November 14, 2008, 06:38:08 AM »
Funny.  He never got back with me on it.  I've always remember what you said Martin, "when someone reacts that way [I'll get back with you later], they've probably had their socks knocked off with the truth".  I emailed him the other day to say hi and express my sense of brotherhood with him in Jesus...he said hi back, but certainly didn't get into anything.  I may be soooo wrong, but I still think there was a seed planted with him.  Maybe God will have me followup at some point.  But so far, he hasn't asked for any further discussion.  Also, when attending with my wife, it seems he's said much less about hell.  He was really on a roll with it.