Monday, July 29, 2013

What a Weekend...

  It's been an incredibly busy weekend.  Saturday I spent all day on the roof with my friend Claude.  From 8 in the morning til 6:30 that night we tore off the roof, and laid new paper, underlay and shingles down.  My face is burnt, my neck is burnt, and by 10pm that night, I was exhausted, sore, and shivering from a sligh case of sun stroke.

   Fortunately, a good night's sleep and lots of water cured that.

   There's not many days left before we put the house on the market.  So Sunday morning I got back at it.  Went downstairs and took apart my desk from the basement living area, and moved it into our newly designated "office" area.  I've taken out so much network cable throughout the house in order to make it look more appealing without all these cables going everywhere.  I ended up organizing all the cables, wires, and powerbars and other crap that I've had and put it into a bin for storage.

   There's still quite a bit to do by Saturday, I think we'll get enough of it done by then that we can put the house on the market.  Once we do, we'll continue cleaning, tidying and getting everything looking FANTASTIC before the house sells.

  Plus there's alot of stuff we can just put on Kijiji and sell.

You're So Vain

  Anyways, being on the roof and working all day with no ghetto blaster playing or distractions, I thought alot about alot of things.  Particularly the Bible and the Church.  And as I was working on the house, this scripture came to mind;

Psalms 127:1
Unless the Lord builds the house,
    the builders labor in vain...

  What is vanity? Webster's dictionary describes it as "marked by futility or ineffectualness"

Romans 8:20-21
20 For to vanity was the creation subjected, not voluntarily, but because of Him Who subjects it, in expectation
21 that the creation itself, also, shall be freed from the slavery of corruption into the glorious freedom of the children of God.
22 For we are aware that the entire creation is groaning and travailing together until now.

  Paul even points out that ALL of creation as it now stands is subject to vanity.  Also, King Solomon writes;

Ecclesiastes 1:2-5
2 Vanity of vanities, says the Assembler; Vanity of vanities, the whole is vanity. 
3 What advantage has a human in all his toil Which he toils under the sun? 
4 One generation goes, and another generation comes, Yet the earth is standing for the eon. 

5 The sun rises, and the sun sets And gasps back to its place, That it may rise there once more.

Because death is the lot of all mankind, and everything is subject to corruption.  Everything IS vanity.  It's empty.  It's meaningless.  Just think, once you die, everything you've owned gets dispersed.  For the majority of humankind, we will be forgotten to history, and even those who have their moments in history like Socrates, Alexander the Great, and etc.  Their effect on the present is so miniscule as to be meaningless.

This is what it means to be futile, to be in vain.

  Once again, back to the Psalms I spoke of.  I reflected on it, and on the contemporary Christian churches as they stand today.  When I was in the ICOC there was a heavy focus on numbers.  We would convert everyone and anyone no matter what the costs.  In fact, I know for certain Bible verses were bent out of shape, people would compromise, say and do anything to win a convert into the Church and claim that as "fruit".

  Who is building THAT house?  Certainly not God.  The Spirit has nothing to do with those conversions.  What are the fruits of the Spirit?

Galatians 5:22-26
22 Now the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
23 meekness, self-control: against such things there is no law.
24 Now those of Christ Jesus crucify the flesh together with its passions, and lusts.
25 If we may be living in spirit, in spirit we may be observing the elements also.
26 We may not become vainglorious, challenging one another, envying one another.

  I can guarantee you, those who claimed to bear "fruit" in the Churches by the conversions they made bore little in the way of this truly spiritual fruit.  Indeed, many of them "challenged one another" and "envied one another".  I can attest that it was not for God these conversions were made, for but self glorification and selfish ambition.

  The true Ecclesia of God IS made of God's own hands.  Whoever comes into the Body of Christ is called there.

Ephesians 1:3-4
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Who blesses us with every spiritual blessing among the celestials, in Christ,
4 according as He chooses us in Him before the disruption of the world, we to be holy and flawless in His sight,

You cannot convert someone by your own power.  A person is a member of the Body of Christ if God has chosen that person.  And that person was chosen before the Garden of Eden was even a mote in God's eye.

1 Corinthians 3:4-11
4 For whenever anyone may be saying, "I, indeed, am of Paul," yet another, "I, of Apollos," will he not be fleshly?
5 What, then, is Apollos? Now what is Paul? Servants are they, through whom you believe, and as the Lord gives to each.
6 I plant, Apollos irrigates, but God makes it grow up.
7 So that, neither is he who is planting anything, nor he who is irrigating, but God Who makes it grow up.
8 Now he who is planting and he who is irrigating are for one thing. Yet each will be getting his own wages according to his own toil.
9 For God's fellow workers are we. God's farm, God's building, are you.
10 According to the grace of God which is being granted to me, as a wise foreman I lay a foundation, yet another is building on it. Yet let each one beware how he is building on it.
11 For other foundation can no one lay beside that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.

Again, we are God's building.  We may work on it, but ultimately everything we do is besides the point - it is God himself who will add to the building and make it grow.  There is so much in this that one could study for hours and hours and never reach it's limit on the study of the Body of Christ.  It is God's building and ought to be honored as such.

Lastly Paul warns of foolish philosophy coming into the work of Christ.

1 Corinthians 3:18-20
18 Let no one be deluding himself. If anyone among you is presuming to be wise in this eon, let him become stupid, that he may be becoming wise,
19 for the wisdom of this world is stupidity with God. For it is written, "He is clutching the wise in their craftiness."
20 And again, The Lord knows the reasonings of the wise, that they are vain.

Be certain you are standing on the firm foundation of the Gospel as Christ gave it to Paul.  Any other foundation is shifting sand.


PS.  In case I wasn't clear, my point is this.  Unless a believer's conversion is built on the solid foundation that God gave to Paul, and that person was called by God to believe in the Gospel of Grace, that conversion is in vain.  All the baptism, and all the "prayers asking Jesus into my heart" is all for naught unless the person understands and believes in the very foundation God gave Paul.  No one can give a believer that faith but God.

That's what vanity is.  Believing, to no effect.  If you have questions and I'm not clear enough, PLEASE ask me.

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