Thursday, June 24, 2010
“Don’t be surprised when they hate you,” Jesus told his disciples.
Who hated Jesus the most? Those who were in positions of religious power were the most hateful. The government establishment was indifferent. They were more concerned with keeping the peace, and if that meant allowing the religious crowd to kill off some rebel rouser then so be it. Those in control cannot be bothered by Love. Love has no place in the halls of power, whether it is in the halls of religious power or political power.
The religious leaders in Jesus day were self-righteous in their own eyes, but they sought to have Jesus executed using lies. They were so “righteous” that they wouldn’t enter Pilate’s house in order to not defile themselves because of the Passover, but they were willing to lie and bribe in order to have an innocent man executed to save their power. (John 18:28)
Jesus is the King of kings, but it has nothing to do with political power. Jesus once said they knew “the letter of the law, but didn’t know the Spirit behind the law.”
Why did the religious leaders despise Jesus? Jesus was taking away their power over the people. They were losing their control. When they lost control, the political authorities would come down on them, or their positions of authority would be questioned. When it finally came down to it, the religious leaders and their minions declared, “We have no king but Caesar.” Hmm. (John 19:15)
I heard a Jewish story once about after the Jewish people finished crossing over the Red Sea and Pharaoh’s troops were drowned, the Jewish refugees were cheering and dancing over the troop deaths. God looked down on His people and scolded them. He told them, “Don’t be cheering and dancing over their deaths. Don’t you realize I love them too?” (Proverbs 24:17 “Do not rejoice when your enemy falls, and do not let your heart be glad when he stumbles”)
Some people look at ‘being hated for Christ’ as a badge of honor. I believe Jesus mourns over everyone who dies without Him. His heart breaks for all who hate Him. He wasn’t telling us that we should be proud of being hated for His name sake; He was letting us know not to be surprised. Because, sometimes people who don’t take sides are simply trying to love each side of an argument are usually hated by both sides because they don’t take a side.
But, these people who are quote, unquote hated for Christ, are they really ‘hated for Christ’s sake,” or are they just hated because they are jerks? Are these same people willing to go the extra mile for those who are the least of these or do they feel justified claiming that “they got what they deserved?” Are we willing to love those who laugh at us, or are we content to just claim martyrdom?
We need to ask ourselves are we trying to love people for Christ whether they like us or not, or are we just wanting to win an argument because it makes us feel superior? Are we being hated because we simply want to love people and try to share Christ or because we are arrogant and self-righteous?
Jesus was hated by the religious community because he was “a friend of sinners and publicans.” I hope I can be hated for the same reasons.
Saturday, June 19, 2010
This list has a variety of genres and varies widely through the years.
There are a number of movies that I thought about listing on here, but decided there were other movies I liked better. I could have also just included all the Pixar movies, but just decided on my one personal favorite. These movies are not my favorites because they are technically great or even worthy of major critical acclaim. These movies are just movies I like to watch. If they are on TV I'll stop and watch them. I have most of these on DVD. Some of them I have to go back and get the DVD, because all I have is the VHS version.
So without wasting any more of you time, My 12 favorite movies.
This has always been one of my favorite movies.
This movie makes me laugh, makes me cry, makes me wanna be married to Bonnie Hunt.
This is my favorite Adam Sandler movie. Always love watching this.
This has always been my favorite Pixar movie. Toy Story was great. I just happen to favor this one. Love the story. Love the Family.
Cary Grant and Jimmy Stewart in the same movie. With Katherine Hepburn thrown into the mix. What more can you ask for?
This has got to be one of my all time favorite war movies. William Holden is great as the loner just trying to make the best of his situation in a prison camp.I just love when he gets away from the cops in the town and slowly turns and smiles into the camera.
This was the most fun I've had at the movie theater in a long time. Apart from Pixar movies, this was a great story, and just a fun time.
Thursday, June 17, 2010
My 12 favorite classical pieces in no particular order....
Classical Gas by Mason Williams...okay...can you really say it's classical music...well, I would like to think so. Modern classical. And it's a great piece of music. So sue me.
Toccata and Fugue in D Minor by Bach...before this piece became know for its relation to old horror movie music Bach used to sign all his work To God be the Glory...I associate this song with Rollerball starring James Caan
Kill the Wabbit...originally known as Ride of the Valkyries by Wagner...or Vagner as some would pronounce it.
"Moonlight" Sonata by Beethoven...I've always loved the moody nature of this piece.
The Four Seasons by Vivaldi ...love music that celebrates the weather. Climate change...been happening ever since God created the heavens and the earth.
Fur Elise by Beethoven...hey, who wouldn't love a musical piece that Schroeder likes. Reference "A Charlie Brown Christmas."
Piano Concerto No. 1 in B flat Minor by Tchaikovsky...The opening notes wake me up...:)
Morning, from "Peer Gynt" by Grieg ...Just something so soothing about this piece.
The Blue Danube - Waltz by J. Strauss II...A beautiful waltz.
Piano Concerto No. 2 in C Minor, Op. 18, "Moderato" by Rachmaninoff...big, dramatic and just cool music.
Eine Kleine Nachtmusick, 1st Movement by Mozart...see if you can guess the movie reference...Mozart's Ghost...
Traumerei by Schumann...Only 3 minutes and 6 seconds...by soothing...elegant...beautiful.
Okay...12 classical pieces...not whole CDs. The list could go on...Classical music is so cool. Kerry Livgren from Kansas was inspired by Debussy...There is a lot of classical influence in Kansas' music.
But anyway...There you have it...My 12 classical favorites...This list changes over time. Some pieces I rediscover...others I never leave behind...Fur Elise being one...I love that piece...
Be blessed. Be a blessing.
I still loves me some Pink Floyd.
Jesus is Wonderful. God is Great.
Don't trust me I'm human, but God so loves me...and you too.
Monday, June 14, 2010
How do you spell Rachmaninoff?
How many symphonies did Beethoven write?
Is it pronounced Shoppin' or Showpan?
What kind of cat does Blofeld own?
Be blessed. Be a blessing.
Too bad ignorance isn't painful. LOL
Thursday, June 10, 2010
Peter, seeing him, said to Jesus, "But Lord, what about this man?"
Jesus said to him, "If I will that he remain till I come, what is that to you? You follow Me."
Then this saying went out among the brethren that this disciple would not die. Yet Jesus did not say to him that he would not die, but, "If I will that he remain till I come, what is that to you?"
So many misunderstandings are based on a misused word, a wrong quote, or just plain ‘jumping to conclusions.’
Take the text used above. Peter was concerned about what someone else was going to be doing, Jesus said, "If I will that he remain till I come, what is that to you? You follow Me." The disciples jumped to the conclusion “that this disciple would not die.” Jesus didn’t say that. Jesus was just pointing out ‘whatever I tell him to do, it is none of your business. You do what I ask of you.”
We can never and should never assume that we know what God wants someone else to do. Hosea is a good example. God told Hosea to marry ‘the wrong kind of woman’ as some people would call her. It became a prophet’s lesson to God’s people. We act like the wrong kind of woman but God loves us anyway and keeps bringing us back to Himself.
I started writing this the other day and yesterday (1-12-08) I had a thought (rare for me, to be having a ‘thought’ such a painful endeavor, I try not to do to much of it) and I asked myself this simple question, “Do I do good things because I’m good or because I’m good I do good things?” Religious people would have me believe that if I do good things I must be a good person. But, there are bad people that do good things. Jesus points that out when He said, “If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will [your] heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!"(Matt 7:11 and Luke 11:13)
Anyone can do good things but it doesn’t mean they are good.
So maybe because I’m good, I do good things? Oh heck no. Apart from Christ, in me dwells no good thing. Paul reminds us that, “As it is written: "There is none righteous, no, not one;” Romans 3:10.
All I can do is fall on God’s grace and mercy found at the foot of the cross and boldly rise a new creation and “Love God and love my neighbors.” Funny though, my neighbors aren’t just those that treat me well, but those that don’t too. It’s God’s kindness that leads people to repentance. Love is what we show to those who love us AND those that don’t.
Am I good, because I do good things? No. Do I do good things because I am good? No. I do good things because God is good and God is alive in me and God’s spirit leads me to do good things. Apart from Jesus what I do is nothing.
Back to my original thoughts on “If I have him tarry til I come…” Do I think God would have someone just sitting around on their butts doing nothing? No. Is it my business to meddle in what God is having someone else do? No, but I can pray that they are seeking God’s guidance and their focus is on Jesus. I believe that if you are spending time doing what God has called each of us to do, “Love God and love your neighbor,” we won’t have time to meddle in other people’s affairs.
Blessings and Grace,
Monday, June 7, 2010
Friday, June 4, 2010
Wednesday, June 2, 2010
I’ve been baptized, identifying myself with the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus. I did it out of faith in Christ. He did it as an example, why shouldn’t I?
Repented? Yes. I have confessed my sins to God. I have given in to the love that God has for me. I have changed my way of thinking towards Christ.
But you know what? My faith isn’t in those things I’ve done above. My faith is in Christ. It’s so easy to lose sight of placing your faith in Christ and melting into justifying yourself by your religious acts.
Galatians 2:15-21 “We [who are] Jews by nature, and not sinners of the Gentiles, knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law no flesh shall be justified. But if, while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, [is] Christ therefore a minister of sin? Certainly not! For if I build again those things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor. For I through the law died to the law that I might live to God. I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the [life] which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. I do not set aside the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died in vain."
Galatians 3:1-3 “O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed among you as crucified? This only I want to learn from you: Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh?”
Finally Paul asks the question, “[Is] the law then against the promises of God? Certainly not! For if there had been a law given which could have given life, truly righteousness would have been by the law.” Galatians 3:21-29
But then he concludes, “But the Scripture has confined all under sin, that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe. But before faith came, we were kept under guard by the law, kept for the faith which would afterward be revealed. Therefore the law was our tutor [to bring us] to Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor. For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you [are] Christ's, then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.”
Paul does mention baptism. But if Paul really thought that baptism was a major tenet, then why did he say in 1 Corinthians 1:17, 18 “For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel, not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of no effect. For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.”
Prior to saying what Paul did he was addressing the divisions in the church. Apparently there were those that we developing little followings. We lose sight of Christ when we’re concerned more with how things are done and not concerned with loving those who need Jesus so desperately.
Paul said in 1 Corinthians 13:13 “And now abide faith, hope and love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.”
James said it, ‘If you love, you do well.’
John said it, “He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.” 1 John 4:8
Jesus said, “By this all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:35
Paul also said, “For you, brethren, have be called to liberty; only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.” Galatians 5:13 (This is not a coercion tactic. Paul was reinforcing the view that we are free from the law, now let us love one another as Christ loves us.)
Finally Paul said in 1 Thessalonians 4:9 “But concerning brotherly love you have no need that I should write to you, for you yourselves are taught by God to love one another;”
Do I have a problem with baptism? No. Let us all be baptized and identify ourselves with Christ. Does that give me the right to assign someone to their little piece of hell if they don’t agree with me? NO! Let us love the unlovable, share hope with the hopeless, and share faith with the faithless.
Let God take care of the rest.
Be blessed. Be a blessing.
"I need love,
Not some sentimental prison
I need God
Not the political church
I need fire
to melt frozen sleet inside me
I need love"
"When the water’s too high
When the water’s too high
I will carry you
I will carry you"
I loves me some Sam Phillips...and Pink Floyd...and cheesecake.