Friday, November 18, 2011

this blog is closed

at least for the foreseeable future.   due to my radically changing understanding of the Gospel.  that to have a spiritual agenda, even 'no agenda but Jesus', is a functional denial of the gospel.  He has done it all.  so my focus is shifting, and in all things the emphasis is changing.  feel free to check out my new blog, Faithful Emphasis.  peace. :)


Saturday, June 11, 2011

loose ends

it would seem in the old testament law, God had a thing for allowing people to tie up loose ends.

Deuteronomy 20:5 Then the officers shall speak to the people, saying, 'Is there any man who has built a new house and has not dedicated it? Let him go back to his house, lest he die in the battle and another man dedicate it. 6 And is there any man who has planted a vineyard and has not enjoyed it's fruit? Let him go back to his house, lest he die in the battle and another man enjoy its fruit. 7 And is there any man who has betrothed a wife and has not taken her? Let him go back to his house, lest he die in the battle and another man take her.'

there is something of a sense of seeing things through to fruition here... the fruit of building a house is it's dedication, of planting a vineyard enjoying it's fruit, and betrothal to a wife the taking of her to himself.  those were things God intended for the man to 'tie up the loose ends' himself, and not be left to another man.

and it's not just an immediate thing, either.  i don't know how long the dedication of a house was, but for a vineyard it could be 5 years: the cross reference for verse 6 in the esv is to Leviticus 19:23-25:

Lev 23 When you come into the land and plant any kind of tree for food, then you shall regard its fruit as forbidden.  Three years it shall be forbidden to you; it must not be eaten. 24 And in the fourth year all its fruit shall be holy, an offering of praise to the LORD.  25  But in the fifth year you may eat of its fruit, to increase its yield for you: I am the LORD your God.

whether that necessarily applies to grapes i don't know...

and from betrothal to the 'taking' of the wife is a year.

my point in pointing this out is to say that the jews would have been used to the idea of wrapping up loose ends before embarking into battle -- because God himself put those things into the law.

so when you move to the gospels, when Jesus says to people to 'follow me', and they say, 'i will, just as soon as i....' and they mention a loose end, they are doing what seems right according to what they have been taught, no?  so who are we to say that they are only halfhearted in their acceptance of following Jesus?  they would be attempting to do right by their God to see things through to fruition before they go on to the next thing He has for them.  finish what you started, right?

so what is really the 'moral of the story' for verses such as Luke 9:59 - 62?

Luke 9:59 To another he said, "Follow me."  But he said, "Lord, let me first go and bury my father." 60 And Jesus said to him, "Leave the dead to bury their own dead.  But as for you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God.  61 Yet another said, "I will follow you, Lord, but let me first say farewell to those at my home." 62 Jesus said to him, "No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God."

in my meager understanding, it seems rather than about our willingness, it's more about the paradigm shift that Jesus brought to the understanding of God's kingdom.  He is doing a NEW thing.  there are no loose ends to tie:  they are dead things, but a vapor.  He was countering what they knew of how the kingdom worked.  it was as much a affront to the levitical law as His saying "drink my blood, eat my flesh".  it would be offensive.  only those with new ears would hear.  those whose understanding of God was tied to the law would naturally find it foolishness, and would turn away.  why do we tend to diss them for doing what is logical?  only if He has given them ears to hear will they be able to hear.... and have their world turned upside down.

talk about a PARADIGM SHIFT.  whoa.

i dunno, i just been mulling this over for about 3 days now.


parable of the beaten man v2

a re-write of an earlier post as i was rereading it today, i saw a totally different emphasis.


Jesus was asked, how can i be saved?

He told a story...

a certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, fell among robbers, who stripped him, beat him, and left him for dead.

a priest came down the road. to touch the man would make him ceremonially unclean and unable to do his priestly duties. so he passed him by on the other side. the law was unable to save.

a levite came and looked. to touch the man would make him ceremonially unclean. so he passed him by on the other side as well. the law was unable to save.

but an Outcast came along, rejected and despised, and so identified with the broken man, that He had mercy on him and took him unto Himself, and loved him as His own. He bound up his wounds, anointing them with oil and wine, and carrying him on His own animal, took him to an inn to tend to him.

the next day when He left, He gave the innkeeper two denarii, and said whatever else the man's wounds require, I will give all. for this left-for-dead man's life I take as Mine own.

who was a Neighbor to the man who fell among robbers?

Jesus said, "Go and do likewise".

(ref. Luke 10:30-37.)


please note: i'm  not stating this, or the earlier version, as in anyway an authoritative -- or even necessarily accurate --  interpretation of the scripture.  i'm just attempting to understand. :)

Saturday, January 22, 2011

prophetic uproar

andrew strom posted this on facebook, and i'm quoting it in its entirety here.  it's very important.

-Andrew Strom.

Earlier this week we published big chunks of Dennis Cramer's "Word for 2011" in which he basically tears into a lot of the flakey and dangerous "New Age"-type practices found in today's Prophetic movement. Well, to my great amazement, I found that the Elijah List had actually published Cramer's piece as well! And it caused such a storm that they had to remove it after just one day - for "clarification"! But then they re-published it - only slightly changed!

For those who don't know, the Elijah List is the main email List for the Prophetic movement - publishing the likes of Todd Bentley, Patricia King, Rick Joyner, Bob Jones, etc. It also sells mounds of their books and CD's. For the Elijah List to publish something that basically refutes all the "Spirit Travel" and "Third Heaven Visitation" stuff is simply unbelievable. It would almost be like the Pope refuting the veneration of Mary!

I don't know what the Elijah List was thinking, but I'm sure glad they did it. Now maybe there's a chance that some of their readers will get out from under those dangerous deceptions.

But I am left a bit dazed by it all - because the very ones who have been advocating "spirit travel AT WILL" and "Trance dancing" and 'Third Heaven visits AT WILL' are the very ministries that the Elijah List has been promoting all these years!

Here is what the Elijah List founder Steve Schultz wrote after they pulled the first article when it caused such a storm-
"Dear Elijah List Readers, There was a huge number of people who were unclear on a few issues with Dennis Cramer's word... The most controversial aspect was the "AT WILL" issue. Apparently, there are some out and about who are teaching that you can transport or go to Heaven "AT WILL" - i.e. whenever you want. This is truly not taught in Scripture. The word "Doctrine" is another word for "teaching." It's an untrue teaching that anytime you want, you can go to Heaven or be transported... As soon as Dennis Cramer sends us a more in-depth explanation of the items he listed, we plan to repost my friend's word."

ANDREW AGAIN: Steve - I'm so glad you wrote this, but do you truly realize what you are saying? Don't you know that Bob Jones and Todd Bentley and Patricia King, etc, are the VERY BIGGEST promoters of all this "AT WILL" deception that you are talking about? Patricia King even has a whole movement of "Ekstasis" Trance dancing! These guys have entire reams of teaching on how to "visualize" your way into the Third Heaven 'AT WILL'. They have been promoting it for years. Surely you know this? That's why your readers are so upset. Dennis Cramer is finally exposing and rebuking this stuff as the 'New Age' heresy that it really is.

On January 15, Elijah List reposted the "re-clarified" word from Dennis Cramer on their website. It was a little softer in places, but still it said the following very clearly:
"One cannot go to Heaven like Paul or be transported physically like Phillip simply because they want to or because they feel like it (at will). Teachings like this often crossover into dangerous methods and techniques that resemble New Age, Mysticism, Spiritism or other occult manipulative practices. A Believer cannot and must not force, manipulate, or otherwise attempt to reproduce a sovereign supernatural Bible experience by merely following a method, a series of steps, or worst of all "willing it" to happen."

In the same re-posted word, Dennis Cramer went on to say-
". Open Heaven/Spiritual Portals = BAD DOCTRINE
. Third Heaven Experiences At Will = BAD DOCTRINE
. Going to Heaven At Will to Get Your Gifts = BAD DOCTRINE
. Transporting Physically At Will = BAD DOCTRINE
. Over-Emphasis on Angels and Specifically Arc-Angels = BAD DOCTRINE
. Going into Trances At Will = BAD DOCTRINE
. Trance Dancing = BAD DOCTRINE
. Hyper-Grace: Christians Do Not Need to Repent of Sin = BAD DOCTRINE"

Well - there goes the Prophetic movement!!
Seriously - I cannot believe they posted this on the Elijah List!
Steve - This is exactly all the stuff your followers have gotten into! Most of the guys you promote - these are the exact 'New Age'-type practices that they teach! Surely you know this?

So now, to finish this article, I need some "clarification" from Steve Schultz. I am very encouraged by this apparent change of heart, Steve, but I need to know if you will now CEASE forthwith any and all publication of the materials and teachings of these people - until they publicly repent and apologize for this 'New Age' heresy. And I need to know if you - Steve Schultz - will now publicly renounce the promotion of these deceptive preachers around the world. (Sorry to be so blunt about it, but we really need to hear this from you). I am so glad that you published Cramer's piece. But now we really need to know where Elijah List stands - and whether things have truly changed or not. We look forward to your reply.

And I ask everyone reading this to please forward it to your Charismatic friends. People need to know that this stuff is finally being declared as "BAD DOCTRINE" - even by the Elijah List itself. Please let everyone know, so this deception can be stopped. You would be amazed how widespread it is.

-You can comment on this article at the following website-

God bless you all.
-Andrew Strom.

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you can read extracts from dennis cramers word here:


Friday, January 07, 2011

an evening of 'stati'....

the flow of thoughts during a rough patch, in facebook statuses...
some days i wish i had never been born. :(
--just can never do anything right

i can't do it right. that's why Jesus came and did it for me.

there's always a more-perfect job that can be done, no matter how well we did. when does it end? ...... when Jesus died on the cross and did what i can never do.

Jesus fills up everything that is lacking in me. which is.... everything.

Jesus extends His grace to us when we fall short, and by His blood cuts off the continual flow of 'expectations' on our behavior, attitudes, and beliefs. so why do we then place those same expectations on each other's shoulders? why then do we place those same expectations on our OWN shoulders?

‎"Faith is a living, daring confidence in God's grace. It is so sure and certain that a man could stake his life on it a thousand times." -- Martin Luther. ....and where does that faith come from? do we stir it up in ourselves? no -- it's the gift of God, so none of us can boast.

law says 'do'. grace says 'done'.

law says 'FINISH HIM!!!!' and tears our heads off our spines.
Jesus says simply, 'it is finished.'

i don't need to hear tips on how to experience God in a fuller way, how to appropriate the blessings of God, or how to take authority over sin, sickness, and demons. i just need to hear the good news of Jesus Christ and His work on the cross on my behalf. and i need it every moment, of every day -- for the rest of my life.

my only hope in life is in Christ. so i cling to Him. 'when i grow up, i want to be a Cling-on!'

just an example of how i battle it through.

not with subjective feelings about God or about me.... but with objective TRUTH, as stated in God's word.

cuz feelings lie.  my spiritual antennae pick up screwy signals.  and satan masquerades as an angel of light.


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

John MacArthur on the 'late, great' Billy Graham.



speaking in the name of God, she denies God's sovereignty.  unspeakable.

"it has not been designated who will win", and "it has not been determined"?  who exactly is she speaking for, then?  is there anything whatsoever that happens that God has not predetermined should come to pass?  no.  then she is not speaking under the inspiration of God, but another spirit.

it's easy to do.  the last - very last - time i 'prophesied', God convicted me that i was speaking under the 'inspiration' of another spirit.  so i'm not judging a person here.  we need to realize that any one of us can become deceived and believe we are speaking inspired of God or not.

which is why it must must MUST be weighed.  and why we must not be offended when someone weighs our words, and most especially if they are found wanting.


Monday, December 20, 2010

safe in my Daddy's big hand...


the parable of the beaten man

Jesus was asked, how can i be saved?

He told a story...

a certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, fell among robbers, who stripped him, beat him, and left him for dead.

a priest came down the road. to touch the man would make him ceremonially unclean and unable to do his priestly duties. so he passed him by on the other side. the law was unable to save.

a levite came and looked. to touch the man would make him ceremonially unclean. so he passed him by on the other side as well. the law was unable to save.

but an outcast came along, rejected and despised, and so identified with the broken Man, that he had mercy on Him and took Him unto himself, and loved Him as his own. he bound up His wounds, anointing them with oil and wine, and carrying Him on his own animal, took Him to an inn to tend to Him.

the next day when he left, he gave the innkeeper two denarii, and said whatever else the Man's wounds require, i will give all.  for this left-for-dead Man's life i take as mine own.

who was a neighbor to the Man who fell among robbers?

Jesus said, "Go and do likewise".

(ref. Luke 10:30-37.)


Sunday, December 19, 2010

baptism as adoption

this sermon by Sinclair Ferguson on baptism speaks of baptism in a way that relates to our adoption.  beautiful.


Outcast, Adopted.

THIS BLOG IS IN NEED OF AN OVERHAUL. there are posts from years back i would not be able to post in good conscience now. i plan to overhaul the blog, and either delete or add a disclaimer to those posts. but that is gonna take time....

The Radical Summons: "
Therefore let us go to Him outside the camp and bear the reproach He endured. For here we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come." Hebrews 13:13.

"The Spirit never loosens where the Word binds; the Spirit never justifies where the Word condemns; the Spirit never approves where the Word disapproves; the Spirit never blesses where the Word curses." —Thomas Brooks

‎"God receives none but those who are forsaken, restores health to none but those who are sick, gives sight to none but the blind, and life to none but the dead. He does not give saintliness to any but sinners, nor wisdom to any but fools. In short: He has mercy on none but the wretched and gives grace to none but those who are in disgrace. Therefore no arrogant saint, or just or wise man can be material for God, neither can he do the work of God, but he remains confined within his own work and makes of himself a fictitious, ostensible, false, and deceitful saint, that is, a hypocrite." --Martin Luther (W.A. 1.183ff)

i will not let You go: "Jacob's sense of his total debility and utter defeat is now the secret of his power with his friendly Vanquisher. God can overthrow all the prowess of the self-reliant, but He cannot resist the earnest entreaty of the helpless." --Albert Barnes

i will not let You go: "Jacob's determination did not flow from his strength, it flowed from his weakness." --Charles Leiter