Friday, May 10, 2013

Come, Let us Love One Another

  So, yesterday I had a migraine all day long.  I spent the majority of the day hidden in the basement.  I bottled 29 delicious bottles of wine that has taken 8 months to reach a state of perfection.  And I gotta tell you, it tastes damn good now.  The wait was worth it.  Although, personally, I hope the next batch, which is currently fermenting, doesn't take as long to turn out well.

  My apologies for yesterday's blog posts.  It seems that when I copy/pasted my verses it changed the formatting on my text.  Mildly irritating, but for those of you who were wondering what those huge white boxes were - I encourage you to go back and reread the blog.  I think you'll find that it makes much better sense now.

All You Need is Love

  Once I left religion I knew I still loved God, I still of loved Jesus - yet I could no longer follow the path of wretched selfishness that religion presented.  Honestly, it was the most maddeningly unloving form of worship.  I could not stomach it anymore.  When you build a religion based on self-salvation, how can it be anything else?

  Yes, you heard me right.  Every religion, including the Christian one is based on the saving of one's self.  Oh, yes Jesus has a token performance in the Christian religion but come on.  What else is "praying Jesus into your heart", or "Making a wise decision", or Baptism and the call to live a righteous life by following the 10 commandments and whatever else the creed of the Churches give you?

2 Timothy 3:4-5 fond of their own gratification rather than fond of God;
5 having a form of devoutness, yet denying its power. (CLNT)

  Having left, I purposed to keep my faith as simple as possible as I pursued the truth and prayed that Jesus would reveal a better way to me.  I took these as my guiding lights;

Matthew 22:36-40
36 "Teacher, what is the great precept in the law?"
37 Now He averred to him, "You shall be loving the Lord your God with your whole heart, and with your whole soul, and with you whole comprehension.
38 This is the great and foremost precept.
39 Yet the second is like it: 'You shall be loving your associate as yourself.'
40 On these two precepts is hanging the whole law and the prophets." (CLNT)

Acts 15:18-29
28 For it seems good to the holy spirit and to us in nothing to be placing one more burden on you save these essentials:
29 to be abstaining from idol sacrifices, and blood, and what is strangled and prostitution; from which, carefully keeping yourselves, you will be well engaged. Farewell!"

This seemed good to me.  Lets see... I don't sacrifice to idols, check.  I don't eat blood, check.  I'm not big on strangulation, so I should be good there, check.  And prostitution isn't all that appealing so... check!  Paul sure kept it simple!

As for Loving God, well, this is what I was doing by leaving Church.  I couldn't love him if I continued to be part of an institution.  It seemed so... wrong to be part of that.  I could love other people either, if I continued in that institution.  Love was my sole meditation for years after I left.

Can I condemn a homosexual?  If God created him or her this way?  No, this cannot be loving.

Can I judge someone else and pass hellish sentence on them? No... I don't think the God who himself claimed that LOVE is his identity, would do such a thing. How perverse!

If you truly want to approach God and understand his Son Jesus, you must do it by the lamplight of Love.  1 Cor 13 is the simplest description of love, yet love is so complex that it confounds the pharisees and religious men of this age. 

Before I finish for the weekend I want to leave you with this last thought.  The God of love, the one true God is at PEACE with you.

Are you feeling shame or guilt?  Are you being imposed upon to go to Church for fear of seperation from God?  Are you being told that he is angry and vengeful and wants to punish you?  Then take peace from this... God is conciliated to you.

The definition of conciliated is "To become friendly or agreeable".  God is FRIENDLY to you.  And if you don't believe me, then read

2 Corinthians 5:20-21
20 For Christ, then, are we ambassadors, as of God entreating through us. We are beseeching for Christ's
sake, "Be conciliated to God!"
21 For the One not knowing sin, He makes to be a sin offering for our sakes that we may be becoming God's righteousness in Him.

It is all already done for you.  There is NOTHING more you need to do.  No prayer, baptism, or any other act can do what Jesus has already done.  So... Be at peace - God loves you, and so do I.

Ephesians 2:8
8 For in grace, through faith, are you saved, and this is not out of you; it is God's approach present,
9 not of works, lest anyone should be boasting.

Have a good weekend,

Travis Penner