Divine Intervention

believe-300x188 Divine Intervention

Let’s consider original sin for a moment.  The apple was eaten, God enters the garden and  asks the couple why they are wearing fig leaves to cover themselves. Now it isn’t like God didn’t know what was on the minds of our two Eden dwellers but the dialog was to point out that something dramatic had changes from the beauty of innocence to a broken knowledge.  There was now a barrier between Him and them.  The barrier was the knowledge of shame.

Throughout the ages, the Bible reveals the hopes and corruption of the human race.  We are given instruction by prophets who tell the people that goodness is the goal, not wealth, not power, even wisdom can be twisted, but a relationship with the true and living God is the direction of fulfillment.

Now a man-god comes onto the scene.  Ordinary in appearance and contrary to the traditions of the culture he is to guide.  This part of God becomes man and moves among us.  After teaching us to love, is murdered, just like the prophets sent before him.  As this man departs this earth, among other things, he takes shame upon himself and just like the shame revealed in the story of Eden, is separated from the divine as part of his mission to restore innocence and a relationship that is so original that any person can come before God directly, without priests, or church or tradition.

Easter is the time we consider the actions and consequences of a God who restores divine relationship.

Wrong Way Reading

why-study-the-bible-300x200 Wrong Way Reading

There is a good way to read the Bible and there is a bad way to read the Bible.  What?…  a bad way to read the good book?  Indeed there is.

One method of learning and understanding of the Good Book, is to read several chapters a day.  Within a year you have the whole Bible read.  Sorry, this is a sloppy learning technique.  The chapters might end mid-idea, from one chapter to another.  Let’s take Romans Chapter 1.  Let’s say you read the first chapter and then put it down and go bed.  You have just lost the whole point of where Paul is going with his ideas.  You end up thinking that maybe God wants you to kill your children because they are disobedient, right?  After all, a child’s disobedience should be met with death since they’re actions are an abomination before the Lord.  Romans 1 is Paul’s intro into the whole concept of grace.  Read the entire letter, again and again.  It will astound you.

The fact is, Paul wrote the text to be read like a letter, without breaks of chapter and verse.  The history of the breakup of the Bible is found at: http://www.bible-researcher.com/chapter-verse.html.  When we read the Bible the way it was intended, we glean more of the spirit of what was intended.  When we break it up, and some ministers are taught in theological school by professors that do this very thing, we get bad teaching that promotes all kinds of crazy thinking.

Paul said in 2 Timothy 2: 15-

 15 Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 16 But shun profane and idle babblings, for they will increase to more ungodliness. 17 And their message will spread like cancer. Hymenaeus and Philetus are of this sort, 18 who have strayed concerning the truth, saying that the resurrection is already past; and they overthrow the faith of some. 19 Nevertheless the solid foundation of God stands, having this seal: “The Lord knows those who are His,” and, “Let everyone who names the name of Christc] depart from iniquity.”

Bruce’s Journey

Bruce’s Journey

I was four years old when I accepted Jesus. And thank you Jesus! That was long before hormones ruled and condemnation entered the picture. I was not immune from the slings and arrows that Christians, not Jesus, threw. I fell many times listening to the evil things exposed by a “good Christians”. What I was slow to pick up on was Jesus was always there when I reached out. I grew up a preacher’s kid and saw my father treated terribly by Christians. My mother even told me the reason was, “God knows the people that really need saving.”

 

I once found myself in a jeep on the Olympic Peninsula being driven by a highly intoxicated twenty-something, on a narrow gravel road at high speed. The guy asked me if I was afraid. I said, “No.” He turned the headlights out, and asked me, “Now?” I turned to him and said, “Jesus has a plan for my life, you are safer with me in the car.” He slowed down, turned the lights on, and never spoke to me again.

Today we begin our journey..

Today the Christian Ethics Foundation officially starts.

I hope you will take the time to read our mission and our posts.  I am interesting in forming a true open and loving community that adds and helps rather than takes and controls.  The direction is the teachings of Jesus. All faiths are welcome to this community.

Let’s get started and feel free to communicate.

Thanks,

Tom’s Journey

Though I have had some early life experience with the Christian faith through the Catholic religion in the form of involuntary church and parochial school attendance, with questionable helpfulness, my personal introduction to God the Father through Jesus did not come until several years later.

 

My parents, through whom I began to understand this new experience and life with God, left the Catholic Church and began embracing a charismatic form of Christianity.  At that time, the Catholic church did not embrace the charismatic movement until later.  During my college years, my parents would often share bible scriptures and related experiences with me.  Though I thought of myself open minded about various ideas and ways of living, my attitude toward the Christian church was negative.  I was out of the closet as a gay man by my college years and was not about to hand over that part, or any part for that matter, to what I thought was a religion that taught that a gay person would not be welcome in “God’s family”.  Thankfully, today a lot of church attitudes toward gay people has changed.

 

However, back in the 70’s and 80’s, church attitudes toward gays were still archaic and I was not about to embrace this.  But God had a plan to help me see him.  I was finishing out the last two years of college at the UW.  My life was happily involved in my studies, part time work and weekend fun times with my friends and the Capital Hill club scene.  I loved going to the Brass connection, Neighbors, and various other places.  I also went to Vancouver BC, Portland and San Francisco with friends.  During this time, I met others gays that were charismatic Christians, certainly an oddity in the circles of friends I was with.  We would discuss God and bible scriptures.  Sometimes we would be together all night, enjoying each other as they shared there ideas of God.  On one occasion, I invited this guy I met to my place because it seemed he needed a place to stay for the night.  He did not appear homeless.  He talked to me, “opening” my eyes about God, thereafter I never saw him again.  On another occasion, I spent a delightful night with this big black guy, very intelligent and well read.  We talked about God and race relations.  I am happy to say that he corrected me on some race issues because growing up in a lily white, recently “restricted” community blinded me to some of these.  One funny thing happened during this encounter, we were both talking about how it would be nice to smoke a joint and suddenly we looked down and there was a baggy of marijuana on the ground, and this was on the grounds of SU right on the steps of there church.  God must have a sense of humor.  

 

 I started to feel God’s presence during these encounters, not withstanding the marijuana incident.  I began to recognize Him by his presence and when I listened to people talk about Him and expound on bible verses.  I also felt his presence in gay bars while on the dance floor, and would raise my hands and praise him!

 

I met a guy at the Brass Connection who happened to be an evangelical Christian.  We often danced there and because he was well versed about the bible he would talk to me about it, and like a spong I soaked it all up.  One day, as we were driving to Capitol Hill to go dancing, I asked him to stop and pull over.  I asked him to lead me in a prayer to except God and His Holy Spirit into my heart and life.  I immediately felt a rush of God’s presence.  Thereafter, we went happily down the road to our destination.

During these years of enjoying God, I never stepped foot in church and again did not like there position on gay issues (back then the term LGBTQ did not exist).  I began reading the bible,  learning to acquire an ear for God’s voice, which I now see as an important asset in knowing Him and recognizing his guidance.  I also discovered Christian music that suited by tastes.  Though unware at this time, I was gathering some life tools that would help me through some rough patches that lay ahead.

 

Though I am not currently attending regular church services, after doing so for many years, except for an on-line church which I now enjoy, I still get enormous peace of mind and happiness from reading the bible and prayer.  I also still enjoy worshipful Christian music.