Sunday, September 6, 2015

The Key Of Knowledge - Part II

A couple of weeks ago, I did a post on the "key of knowledge" that Jesus accused the Pharisees of stealing from the people. (To read that post, click here.)

I talked about how the knowledge that Jesus meant was an intimate knowing, not just a friendship but a lover's relationship, human beings in a love relationship with the Eternal One. 

This means that what the Pharisees had done was to reduce a love relationship down to a list of dos and don'ts, of shoulds, ought-tos, and supposed-tos. (Hm, sounds like what happens in most church organizations.) 

That's what humans do. When Moses first went up Mount Sinai to spend time with God, God also invited the people up to spend time with Him ...but they refused. They'd been steeped in 430 years of ancient Egyptian teaching that talked about how people had to appease the gods or they would be found lacking when it was time for the judgment, when their souls would be weighed in the balance. They were afraid. They refused to get close to (their own image of a) god who would strike them down at the least infraction. They didn't understand this God who wanted to know them; all they saw was a deity who had already struck the Egyptians down, decimated the oppressor's army and supernaturally delivered them ... when would this deity suddenly turn on them? No, they had to remain distant. If Moses wanted to talk to God, he was welcome to that; not these little grey ducks. 

It was the same lie that Eve believed in the Garden. "God's holding out on you. He can't be trusted." 

So they stayed away. "You spend time with God, Moses. We'll look to you and YOU can tell us what He wants." 


What did He want?  Relationship. Intimate relationship.

What did they settle for?  RULES.  Distance. A go-between. Moses was (to them) the mediator - the one who would tell them what God wanted. And where Moses is read (in other words, the Torah, the Law) ... that is what people see - the rules. And those who read the New Testament from a standpoint of rules, from a mind-set of do and don't, that's all they're going to see: a set of rules, steps to climb up the staircase to appease a deity because if they don't ... they won't end up in Heaven, but in the other place.

But those rules were only put there to show us that we are incapable of keeping them. ALL of us are incapable of keeping the whole law. It's not ABOUT keeping the law. It never was. 

There have been some down through history that "got" it. King David got it.... and he was far from perfect. But he understood that the rules weren't what it was about - if you read the Psalms you see a man who was in a relationship with God - a man "after God's own heart." Yet he messed up royally! What does that tell us?  It tells us that living isn't about obeying the rules, or judging people based on the rules.

What does God STILL want? What He's ALWAYS wanted:  intimate relationship with each of us. 

Now ... here's the mind-blowing thing. Jesus - according to the plan set out before the universe existed - entered the corporeal (physical) universe, the one that He made, the one that He spoke into existence. He came into this world to show us that God who loved Him intimately, loves US intimately. He came to prove it to us. He came to open our eyes, to make a proposal to us. 


Photo "Affectionate Man Kissing His Lady"
courtesy of imagerymajestic at
 This does NOT mean, "He doesn't love us until we let Him." He has loved us and will love us forever, in eternity past and in eternity future, in the eternal now, each of us individually, every person who has ever existed or who ever will exist. No, this is not saying that our choice drives His love or His life in us. This is saying that whether we want Him to or not, He loves us

Those of us whom His Spirit has brought to Him have been healed permanently of our spiritual blindness so that we can SEE that He loves us; that is the only difference. He is one with us - in a much deeper way than two humans could ever become one. This is the kind of intimacy that He already has with us. We are one with Him. Christ in us, the hope of Glory. 

All of this means, dear ones, that we don't have to strive: we don't have to jump through hoops and repent/confess/renounce/sacrifice. We need not agonize and "push through" and "press in...." We don't have to operate in the "I'm no good" or "I don't deserve" or the "I'm so unworthy" ... none of it ... to be acceptable to Him. He's already crazy about us! He has already accepted us! He is already IN us!

He is the one who opens our eyes to that. It's why He came - to open our blinded eyes to the Light. 

What do we do with that? How do we respond to Him opening the eyes of the ones born blind (us)? 

It's so simple. 

This, friends, is GOOD news!  This is liberating!! This is that easy yoke, the light burden, the joy unspeakable, the rivers of living water.  This is LIFE - not the death of fear and guilt and shame that I (and I suspect you too) lived in the middle of, for years and years in the organized religious system that all my life I called the church.  That was not the living organism of the church. That was cold and dead religion, composed of people's never-ending attempts to impress a cold, impersonal deity and judge each other while doing so.  This, this Love, on the other hand, is freedom, and mercy, and grace, and truly living

Any time we judge anyone else (and believe me, I've done more than my share!), we are not operating in that Love or in that Life, but in our own religious system of guilt and shame and fear and judgment. This is why there is so much unhappiness in believers, so much dissatisfaction with the organized church: we are operating in fear and guilt; these bring shame and judgment and torment. And death. They bring death - that same living death that the first couple knew after they'd eaten from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. 

Jesus came to prove to us that the Father loves us, so that we could have Life. 

Not death, not judging who is right and who is wrong. Life. 
Not guilt, not shame. Life. 
Not bondage, not fear. Life. 

He IS the Life. He IS Love.
Let's let Him love us in a SO much deeper way than we've ever known. 
He has been waiting ... forever. 

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