Friday, March 23, 2007


The Substitute

The other blog, God Still Speaks, is discussing this month, the bodily resurrection of Christ Jesus, Messiah, Lord of Life, spurred on by “the bones”, this year's controversy and ensuing questions posed to this writer. Is the Resurrection literal? How important is it that Jesus rose from death in every way, not only in ghostly fashion?

Mrs. Schaeffer, Christianity Is Jewish, writers, “We can be shaken by the enormity of [Jesus’] drawing the [line] between those who receive Him and those who do not, and by the clarity with which He points to bodily resurrection.” (p 143)

“But after I am risen again, I will go before you into Galilee.” ~Jesus (Matt. 26:32 and Mark 14:28)

Does this sound like a spiritual event or more likely a space/time announcement? Seems so concrete, like, “I’ll meet you by the water fountain at 3”!

“Behold, we go up to Jerusalem, and all things that are written by the prophets concerning the Son of Man shall be accomplished. For He shall be delivered unto the Gentiles, and shall be mocked, and spitefully entreated and spitted on;
“And they shall scourge Him, and put Him to death, and the third day, He shall rise again.”
~Jesus (Luke 18:31-33)

“Behold My hands and my feet, that it is I Myself; handle Me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see Me have.”

THEN “He said unto them, ‘Have ye any meat?’ And they gave Him a piece of a broiled fish, and of an honeycomb
And He took it, and did eat before them.”
~Luke 24:39, 42-43

“Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” ~Jesus (John 2:19)
“…He spake of the temple of His body. When therefore He was risen from the dead, His disciples remembered that He had said this unto them; and they believed the Scripture, and the word which Jesus had said.” ~John 2:21-22

Just as there would be complete restoration of the Temple--the same Temple--in Jesus’ illustration (“I will raise IT up”, not another one), there were no remains of Jesus’ body because one and the same body of Christ was wholly restored. Hallelujah!

“I am the Resurrection and the Life. He who believes IN ME will live, even tough He dies; and whoever lives and believes in Me will NEVER die. Do you believe this?” ~Jesus (John 11:25-26)

Jesus illustrated and narrated the resurrection power of which He spoke as they rolled the stone away from the tomb of Lazarus:
“Father, I thank You that You have heard Me. I knew that You ALWAYS hear Me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here; that they may believe that You sent Me.” ~Jesus, praying (John 11:41-42)

God has used beautiful word pictures to demonstrate things of the spiritual realm throughout history. Here is a picture of a picture—Jesus says, “I’m saying this to reveal You. It is John, the document’s author as God’s instrument, revealing Jesus…Who is in turn revealing the Father! Why did Jesus do this? I see it as a picture of how God has operated in establishing relationship with His dearest creation: Mankind. The Father reveals Himself to us in recorded historic episodes of life.
Of course, Jesus is REALLY speaking with the Father in time and space and yet, the purpose goes SO MUCH further! He wants it to be clear to the observing crowd, this is a forecast type of His bodily return to life. Listen, “You see, My friend Lazarus? That is not a ghost. He is physically alive. Coming soon: THE MESSIAH RESURRECTED—THE NEXT EPISODE." (Wait for THE FINAL EPISODE: SECOND COMING! An In-the-Body Experience!)
Jesus pointed toward a physical afterlife, to be sure. He turned heads. His message loud and clear, “To anyone with ears, let him hear.” I AM THAT I AM sent Me “that ye might have eternal life.”

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Tuesday, March 20, 2007


When Jesus Spoke, People Listened

“We need to sweep away the hindering dust and smog which has been put between the Old and New Testaments…Today, the thing of first importance is to believe the writings of Moses—really believe they are true; then, in Jesus’ own teaching, we are prepared to believe His words.
Those that say nothing matters but Jesus, and think of Him as appearing out of nowhere two thousand years ago as a floating mystical happening to be followed, like a ghostly gleam, have not listened to Jesus Himself when He says, ‘But if ye believe not [Moses’] writings, how shall ye believe My words?’” ~John 5:47 ( Schaeffer; CIJ, p 143, emphasis mine)

At God Still Speaks, the other blog, I refer back to the law and procedure of the High Priest and Tabernacle sacrifices in Exodus and Leviticus, which is a type and illustration of God’s pinnacle sacrifice of His only Son. On the road to Emmaus, do you realize what Jesus “chatted” about with two of the apostles? Not the weather or last night’s episode of Lost! “He said to them, ‘How foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the Prophets have spoken! Did not the Christ have to suffer these things and then enter His glory?’ And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, He explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning Himself.” ~Luke 24:25-27

Jesus spoke truth, one hundred percent, every last word. “…No deceit was found in His mouth.” ~1 Peter 2:22 (Peter quoting Isaiah 53:9)

John records his teacher’s accusing words to the Pharisees: “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. For he is a liar, and the father of it. And because I tell you the truth, ye believe Me not.”

You see, there is no gray. You believe all Jesus has said or none. If you believe only parts, then you also believe He was capable of lying (or the writers got His words wrong, but then, what’s the point of believing anything written about Him, if we have no idea what is accurate?) In either case, how or why do you believe any of it? If you don’t believe Jesus Christ is the Way and only way to the Father, then why do you believe at all? What is it you believe in, a liar or a distorted story?

One thing to be sure of, relativism, half-truths, personal truth cannot abide with the words spoken by Messiah. There is Truth and there is non-truth. If He spoke Truth saying, “No one comes to the Father but by Me”, then the opposite MUST NOT be true: “Some come to the Father without Me.”
“Yet to all who received Him, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God.” ~John 1:12

How many Jews realize Jesus’ entire ministry was directed toward them, Israel. As Mrs. Schaeffer points out…they would recall Isaiah 40:11—“He shall feed His flock like a Shepherd: He shall gather the lambs with His arm, and carry them in His bosom, and gently lead those that are with young.” The Jews would remember as Jesus spoke these words to them:
“My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me: and I give unto them eternal life, and they shall never perish, neither shall anything pluck them out of My hand. My Father, which gave them Me, is greater than all; and nothing is able to pluck them out of My Father’s hand. I and My Father are one.” ~John 10:27-30

His words divided the crowd! Listen: “…and I lay down My life for the sheep.” “I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again.” (John 10:17 and 18)
Some considered it blasphemy from a raving lunatic!
Some believed.
All were Jews.

Friday, March 09, 2007


Jesus Said...

“My God is Love. He doesn’t judge based on how much knowledge a person has,” someone said to me. Correct! God judges according to what you DO with the knowledge widely AVAILABLE to you and nearly all of mankind! WHY does my sweet friend read everything BUT the Bible on the shelf in her home? The issue has never been those who have not, for God is fair. Always, it has been the seeking heart, the knowledge which abounds around us, and the warm or cool reception God receives. Frankly, Jesus laid it on the line when He said, “I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of My mouth.” ~Revelation 3:15-16

“If you believed Moses, you would believe Me, for he wrote about Me. But since you do not believe what he wrote, how are you going to believe what I say?” ~Jesus (John 5:46-47)

It is in words that God has communicated, knowing full well our mental capacity to grasp His message of salvation. Rejection of God’s Word incarnate and God’s spoken Word (Jesus and the Bible, respectively) is a question of the heart, not the mind. If you want to know it, you will. Made in God’s image, we can emotionally relate to the desire for goodness, beauty, peace, companionship, creativity and fun, all of which is God’s. Justice and fairness are deeply entrenched in our conception of civilization. There are certain acts of aggression and oppresion that are not tolerated in any society, ANYWHERE! Human beings are perfectly able to understand the things of God, including His Word.
So, what words did Jesus use to describe Himself?
“I am…
…the Way, and the Truth, and the Life
… (John 14:6)
…the Resurrection and the Life… (John 11:25)
…the Bread of Life… (John 6:35)
…the Light of the world… (John 8:12)
…the door… (John 10:7)
…the Good Shepherd. (John 10:11)
…[One with My Father]. (John 10:30)
…the True Vine…” (John 15:1)
“Ye call Me Master and Lord: and ye say well; for so I am.” (John 13:13)
“Verily, verily, I say unto you, before Abraham was, I AM.” (John 8:58)
“Then Jesus said to those Jews which believed on Him, If you continue in my word then are you my disciples indeed; And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” ~John 8:31-32

“Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you; He rises to show you compassion. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for Him!” ~Isaiah 30:18

Michael W. Smith sings these poignant words in his latest release, Stand:
"His arms are open...the chains are broken...His Word is spoken."

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