|Until we see||
‘...ON THE SPECTRUM’
It was only a matter of time. After all, we all live it seems, at a particular point on some spectrum or another.
Perhaps I am, on a scale of 1 to 100, about 3 1/2 on the autism spectrum; or somewhere on the kleptomania spectrum. Maybe I’m at 20 on the paranoid psychopath spectrum!? (Speaking of which—please don’t dare suggest I’m higher that. Things could get very nasty!)
Once we are able to define every human deficiency or inclination as being somewhere on a spectrum of one or another mental disorder, it means that all this nonsense about us being sinners in need of repentance and salvation can be put to bed once and for all. (I am not making light of genuine mental disorders). The implication is that, given enough time and research dollars, all can be remedied with the appropriate chemicals in pill form!
Of course, not everything is digital—on/off. Lots of things ARE analogue. In the colour spectrum there are infinite shades among each of the primary colours (red, green and blue). There are also grades of affectedness in many ills and diseases.
The word ‘spectrum’ describes genuine degrees of colour or heat or affectedness in some relevant things, but it was only a matter of time before it suggested itself as a convenient descriptor for things which ARE actually and factually digital or binary—like biological sex.
To posit that a person’s biological sex appears somewhere on a spectrum (which is up to them to discern), is rather like saying that the electric light in the room is neither on nor off, but somewhere on a spectrum between on-ness and off-ness. (If a dimmer is fitted in the circuit, the light may be on a spectrum of brightness, but it will still be either on or off).
That is the nature of relativism; it loves the idea of everything in the universe being analogue. No absolute good; no black as opposed to white, only shades of grey; no absolute darkness. No absolutes!
Relativism therefore hates a God who says, “I am the LORD, and there is NO OTHER; There is no God besides Me.”
Or who says, “I AM the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”
But there is no spectrum of truth. We can’t access at a point we consider comfortable along a truth spectrum, yet that is what people try to do. They select the ‘bandwidth’ that provides for them what they consider a safe bet.
What God and Jesus have said is either wholly truth or a complete lie.
We must make a digital choice—between light and dark; between truth and falsehood; between life and death!
THE MYTH-MAKERS WALK AMONG US!
In ancient times people such as the Sumerians invented stories to account for the creation, the historic flood and other events. The Gilgamesh Epic is one such story, as is the Rainbow Serpent story of the Australian Aborigines or the Incan Wiraqucha.
It is important to understand that there were two streams of people walking the Earth (see my book ‘THE PEOPLE, The Sons of God (through the eyes of a Watcher’). One stream was that of those who followed God; the other, those who kept choosing independence from Him. They are known respectively throughout the Bible as the sons of God (benei Elohim) and the sons of men (benei adam).
The sons of God in the line of, for example, Abel, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Moses, Joshua, David etc. interpreted the handed-down history through the lens of their experience of the one, true God and His very evident work in those He called The People. Theirs was the correct interpretation and it has come to us by the grace of God intact, as the story of His grace which culminates in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ in our behalf.
Those known as the sons of men (because of their denial of truth and their choice to walk away from God) found it necessary to invent causes for the great events that remained in the human memory by story-telling. These are the myths such as the Gilgamesh Epic and the Rainbow Serpent and the Native American mythologies.
But, the myth-makers are still at work. The sons of men—those rejecting God today—are hard at work on the great 20th & 21st Century myths in an effort to account for creation and events in a way that excludes God. So, we have men such as Richard Dawkins and many more, creating their own story (and persuading many), that all can be accounted for without the need for God! You see, it all arose of its own accord from a single entity (the origin of which is inexplicable) into a universe of such astounding complexity that it defies all attempts to fathom or understand. A sophisticated myth, but no less so than those mentioned above.
And we had been told that only ‘primitive’ people invented myths! The spirit of the myth-maker is alive and well—and active within the sons of men today—and it’s simply the same spirit!
AT THE END...
At The End some will say, "Why didn't you tell me?"
And HE will say, “Tell you? Remember those of my Followers I brought across your path? You dismissed them as people who needed to see the ‘real’ world when you were actually the one refusing to see it. Or those times when you heard from me at Followers’ funerals or weddings and justified yourself by relegating my Story to ‘folklore’. And remember when I saved your life in that accident? You even said, ‘thank God’! I had your attention for a little time, yet despite that, you still managed to persuade yourself you could handle things better on your own. Your fun and fast-paced lifestyle and career (not to mention pursuit of knowledge and travel—immersing yourself in what you called the ‘real’ world) usually contrived to silence my voice, because I rarely shout.
“Yes, I have been ‘telling you’ all your life; but my voice, and what I’ve had to say wasn’t what you chose to hear. You hoped I would say something I cannot, and affirm you in your lost-ness. No, I actually gave you life in the hope you’d become your ‘found’, true-self in me! You have saddened me deeply with your life-long refusal to heed and yield to my kindness, but I will have to let you go into the end you’ve so clearly told me every day, you’ve chosen.”
Put yourself in this shirt!
STRAINING OUT GNATS WHILST SWALLOWING CAMELS...
(Jesus in Matthew 23:24)
“That’s it” triumphed the Arch-Deceiver, “keep making them believe that some side issue is THE main thing.”
“Like what?” I queried
“Like saving the planet while they kill their babies by the millions.”
“Why do they do that?”
“Because by making the little thing the big thing and making the little thing sound ever so righteous, they can mask—and avoid thinking about—the real evil.”
“Is killing their babies the only thing?”
“Oh no...my trick is to make everything God says is good to sound repugnant to them.”
“How do you do that?”
“Easy. I disguise myself as an angel of light.”
“Is it working?”
“He, he, he, he.”
MEET THE FAKE, MAN-MADE JESUS!
There's a faux righteousness abroad, the righteousness that man tries to establish and of which Paul wrote in Romans 10 verse 3.
This manufactured righteousness has also infiltrated the church where some seem to desire to mould Jesus' work and ministry into congruence with their espoused causes.
So, we have the high-sounding, yet totally false 'dogma' circulated by those whose agenda it suits, that, for example, 'Jesus came for the poor.' This is patent nonsense. Even a cursory examination discloses that Jesus came for all--rich, poor, black, high, middle and low. In fact, a simple count of Jesus' one-on-one encounters in the gospels reveals that there were actually more (yes, more!) encounters with clearly 'un-poor' people than poor! He came for everyone and much of his ministry was to well-to-do and influential folk. Just take Luke's account. There are about 14 of these personal encounters related by Luke and only 3 or 4 of them can categorically be defined as being poor with one or two others questionable, but let's say there are 6 who are categorised as poor. That still leaves 8 who are clearly not materially poor. 'Good news to the poor, heal the broken-hearted, proclaim liberty to captives, sight to the blind and liberty to the oppressed' (Luke 4;18 quoting Isaiah) clearly refers to both physical and spiritual conditions.
It seems that arising from this idea is another, just as insidious-- that Christians have an obligation to take up causes to counter injustice or poverty.
Now, while there is sometimes a case to jointly raise a voice on an issue, what he is really looking for is the person who alleviates the poverty or the injustice that he or she can see—and that is pointed out to them by Jesus himself. Personal responsibility and obedience when we see another by the wayside (as in Jesus' famous parable) is what he is looking for and it is usually of the unseen and unsung variety (not alms done before men for the 'reward' of being seen--see Matthew 6:1-4). Marching or awareness-raising or banner-waving or 'Liking' a cause on social media are not primarily what Jesus is looking for in those who follow him. These are not models of ministry that he exemplified. Rather, he was out and about watching for the situation or to whom the Father would lead him and addressing that need before moving on to the next encounter in which the Father would involve him. Leprosy did not become the cause, prostitution did not become the cause; nor Roman oppression, nor injustice, nor equality, nor children's rights. In fact, in stark contrast to public and general causes, he preferred to address the specific condition and needs of individuals right in the moment of interaction. With Zacchaeus, Jesus did not feel obliged to take up the issue of unfair tax commissions or collection methods; the issue for him was the heart of the collector, Zacchaeus. (When the kingdom/government of God came to that one heart, righteousness that affected many whom he had wronged, came their way).
Jesus was not a right-er of wrongs. When someone in the crowd said, 'Teacher, bid my brother to share the inheritance with me' Jesus replied 'who made me an arbitrator over you?' And then he addresses the covetousness in the man's heart. He did not take up the cause of injustice in the inheritance system. He came, not to right wrongs, but hearts! His ministry has not changed.
MIRACLES AND THE ONION SKIN
My problem with the anti-creation camp is as follows: many are too easily swayed by the mantra, ‘but the science is saying this’ or ‘the science says that’ and automatically jettison any possibility of, for example, an actual 6-day creation. I am not anti-science by any means, but science, remember, is forever only the attempt to understand (and explain) what is observed. What today’s science would have observed (if it could have) when Jesus made wine out of water, was something like the manipulation of time, or the condensing of time. For not only was water made wine in a matter of moments—but the best wine! The maturation process was somehow accelerated within those huge jars.
It is not difficult for me to accept that what he can do in a jar in Palestine, he can do in an infinitely larger space with different matter. What the science would have seen when a lad’s lunch fed more than 5000 people was matter somehow being formed, or at least multiplied—instantaneously. When three men walked unharmed in a furnace that normally consumed flesh instantly, some temporary shift from matter to non-matter appears to have occurred (a reality that Quantum Science now concedes as possibility). What we call miracle, after all, is the implementation of laws that have to date eluded our understanding. You don’t have to read or understand much of quantum physics to see that there is much that baffles the very best scientists—and the best and most modest of these, say so!
We can (and should) go on through all the miracles of the Bible and hear what we call the realm of the miraculous, is saying. Certainly for the Christian, that becomes our platform when confronted with, ‘but the science is saying this’, and be bold enough to say, ‘yes, but that other realm, the miracle/eternal realm is saying this!’
In my view, something from the eternal realm that we are forced to call miracle, is the pinnacle; miracle trumps currently known principles of physics and miracle is the ground Christians occupy. Just recently it has been announced by scientists studying quantum effects that ‘time may be illusory.’ Well ....hello!
The sciences are scratching (as they should) at tiny fragments of the outer layers of an onion that is huge beyond comprehension! Unfortunately, it too often acts as though it has found the core—and that's what offends me! Surely the way God gets things done does not necessarily need to be explicable to science in its current state (or ever?)
Science will forever be catching up to miracle because God is just a little ahead of us! He knew about the quantum world before Max Planck, Niels Bohr and Albert Einstein found it (they simply found what was there and started trying to explain it!) As time continues we will probably be allowed to discover more mysteries He knew about before He set this thing in motion!
We need to get over ourselves! And ... a lot of scientists need to get over themselves. As one secular scientist—Jeff Forshaw, has wisely said, “By overstating science’s power and not acknowledging its limitations, we risk fostering the growth of a religion-substitute, with the scientists as high priests. Such hubris not only irritates people, but more significantly it risks promoting the misconception that science deals with certainty—and that is the very antithesis of good science.”
Beautiful Newport Beach,
What people who've read THE PLACE are saying...
Marilyn Sams - author of The Jerusalem Temple Mount Myth: Ian Heard’s book adds a unique ....aspect to the growing movement of people accepting the City of David location for the temples in Jerusalem. His perspective .....brings many insightful possibilities to the table. Especially moving are his heartfelt expressions of faith in and love for the prophets and the Savior of the world'.