Monday, October 28, 2013

Equality of roles in society?

My cousin is studying a couple of theology papers at uni this year and has posted up a couple of write ups on FB. They seem like really interesting topics, rather controversial.

I like the sound of studying contextual theology, but I am not so sure about the angle of the feminist theology. Sure, it is great to study the real meaning behind texts, but I find that there is too much of an appeal for "equality" today. Don't get me wrong, I believe in equality. But the equality I believe in is one of worth and status under God, not someone's role.
Just because someone has a different role under God to another person, does not mean that that role is lesser or greater in value, but is simply different in function. Just because John Key is prime minister of New Zealand does not mean that he is greater and of more value than I under God, but he simply holds a different role. He probably is able to do that role better than I, but that does not make him unequal to me. I don't get up in arms and claim "God has created me unequal, I am different from John Key, how dear he?!"

God has created us all to have a role and function in life, it is a matter of finding that best function that He has designed us for.

Sunday, October 20, 2013 pride

Listening to a song by the Christian metal band Stryper inspired this thought. Here are the words to the song first of all:

Saturday night's a lie, I follow every cue
Sunday is sanctified, I smile and take the pew
Monday it's back to school - Am I learning, not at all
Tuesday and Wednesday, Thursday, Friday I just crawl

Seeds that were growing have been dried up by my flesh
I walk the walk and talk the talk but where's the rest
I could have everything even what's behind the stars
But I built my prison without windows, without bars

Gotta fight, gotta stop living a lie
Gotta fall, gotta lay down and die
Gotta stand and run to the other side
Gotta live or it's Murder By Pride

Watching people, including the one in the mirror, and it's easy to see that we live for ourselves too much. It seems like all we care about at times is how we feel or what makes us feel better about our life, our lifestyles, our thoughts, and our actions. As the song says our seeds (our ways of life) have been dried up by the flesh. The flesh causes us to be blind. We start to focus on our own wants and desires of the flesh and this in turn causes us to lose focus on living right. We build our own prisons. We live secret lives. We live lies.

When we live for ourselves we do these things:
  • We challenge God's word and authority. This causes us to think less of moral standards or even lose a standard to live by. When standards of God are lost then humanity suffers chaos. A world without Godly standards is called 'hell".
  • We exalt ourselves over the wisdom of God. Humanity that can't even control their own finances, marriages, and other issues in life think they can actually get away with making decisions without God or at least the wisdom He has passed on in the Scriptures? What makes us think we are right?
  • We feel we are the most important person in existence. People do not listen to wisdom. They feel just because they think it then it must be right. Everyone has a closed mind or turn a blind eye to what they are doing because if they are proven wrong then they have to change.
All of these can be summed up into one word, pride. One being did that a long time ago and a special place has been created for him. Pride came before his fall and pride will come before our fall.
Sometimes we have to put our own desires away. When we live secret lives we not only lie to the world but we lie to ourselves. Yet, we keep going on living that way. We have to stop living a lie. Just because things feel okay to do or we no longer feel bad about some of our actions does not meant that we are living right. We all need certain standards to live by. Just because God's morals are not what we feel are for everybody does not mean His moral standards are wrong. We may think it's okay to release our anxieties with alcohol, but it's not. We may think it's okay to indulge ourselves with "feel good" activities because it has been accepted by the world, but it's not. We may think our wrongful sexual desires are okay to pursue because it makes us feel good and wanted, but it's not. We may think it's okay to get revenge or to react in a vengeful way because we feel people deserve it, but it's not. Just because certain things make us happy and/or we do not understand why God says certain things are wrong does not mean we do not have to abide by His standards. Sometimes we have to lay down our flesh and die to this world. If we keep on living for the flesh then we let our pride murder us.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Touch of the Master

Inspired by Joseph Prince Ministries:

In the Old Testament (Torah) the Jewish nation was bound by certain laws to become holy or clean before the Lord Adonai. If you sinned or had afflictions you had to do certain acts. You had sacrifices. You had ceremonial cleansings. You had to be isolated for certain amount of times. You had to leave your community until the affliction was gone or you were. Such as lepers had a skin condition that by the law made them unclean. Lepers were not allowed to walk in the streets, they had to stay in the valley of the lepers.  There was a woman who had a hemorrhage for 12 years and because of this she was considered unclean. When she touched Jesus' clothing as He walked by she then tried to hide for fear of the people because of what she had done.   By the law, those who were considered unclean were not allowed to touch those who were considered clean. If they did then the unclean passed onto the clean thereby making them unclean as well. People ran from them. People ignored them. People were frightened to be around them; causing those with afflictions to feel like outcasts, loners, and unworthy. Leviticus 21:7, says:
  • When anyone touches anything unclean, whether human uncleanness, or an unclean animal, or any unclean detestable thing, and eats of the flesh of the sacrifice of peace offerings which belong to the Lord, that person shall be cut off from his people.
But Jesus through the new covenant of grace changed all of that. When Jesus saw these people He did not shy away from them like the regular population. Unlike others who backed away, Jesus went to them and even more He touched them. Matthew 8:2-3:
  • And a leper came to Him and bowed down before Him, and said, “Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean.” Jesus stretched out His hand and touched him, saying, “I am willing; be cleansed.” And immediately his leprosy was cleansed.
By the law the leper and the woman would have been considered unclean but because of who He was the tables were turned. Instead of the unclean causing the clean to be unclean this time the clean made the unclean...clean!
Those who are touched by the Master are cleansed. It doesn't matter what our past holds. It doesn't matter how unclean we have been, when we are touched by the Master our sins are washed away, our past stays exactly where it is, in the past. Our unworthiness is now made worthy. This is why Paul says Your grace is sufficient. Paul had a horrible history with God's new family members and yet Paul new he was forgiven because He was touched by Jesus.
Whether Jesus seeks us out or we seek Him, we can have this cleansing.