Look at the cross (and measure)


How many … how much … When?
Who … what … Where?
This long … this high … Why?
No more than … no less than … Who?
Days … nights … heartbeats … How?
We are a being of the finite.
Living in the infinite.
We live in the finite.
Fearing the infinite.

Yesterday’s post birthed another and both birthed this …

The Jewish bible, the Old Testament bible, is full of man hearing God’s measurements for mankind: this high, this wide, this many, that many, no more than, no less than, each and every, until …

The infinite being defined by the finite.

Numbers matter to mankind of the God of the bible.  And the lesson is learned well. Every facet of living is measured and judged.  Every thought and action is defined and approved.  Man has made the God of the infinite … finite.  And in making “all finite” also makes all slaves to life and living and death and eternity.  The counters of the finite rule the infinite.  And the infinite is subservient to the finite.

Prophets warn. Prophets wail.  Prophets hope.  Prophets come and go.  The infinite remains subservient to the finite of the counters.  And then God Soft Hands Jesus.

It is written but I say.
Not this many but the infinite.
Not when but right now.
Not who but why not.
Not by measure of counting but by love unconditional.
Then is now and now is forever.
Count no more.
Love evermore.
It is written.
BUT I SAY!
The finite no longer rules the infinite.
The infinite no longer rules the finite.
Love without condition or measure “is”.

I am a follower of love.  Love without condition.  But my whole being measures love.

How conditional is my love still?  More or less conditional than yesterday?  More or less conditional than before?  Am I nearing unconditional or still a way to go?  Am I following closely enough?  How many times do I follow closely?  What is closely – how do I measure closely?  What in unconditional – how do I measure unconditional?

I am wrong.  I still wish the finite to rule the infinite.

I see that in very atom of “Christian”.

The measure of sin or no sin, the measure of love or no love, the measure of forgiveness, of grace, of journey, of each day, of each second, of each life, of each saved soul, of each lost soul, of each church emptying or filling, of each collection plate full or bare, of each prayer and how to pray, of each fellowship and what each got, of each service and how to worship, of each verse and what it means, of who we love and how we love … and who we do not love like others and how we should not love some like others.

Unconditional love … cannot be measured.

Yet we look at the cross and measure.  We look at God-made-man and measure.  We listen to the Jesus of “7 x 70” and think “Too much!”  We measure the parables, the miracles, the healings, the resurrections … the “evidence”.   We still measure the infinite in the finite.  We still want to count.  We still need to measure.

We still don’t get it.

We say we are happy to bless a same sex relationship
But not as “proper marriage”.
That is not correct
Or biblical
Or of God
We cannot and we must not.

We still make the infinite finite. We still measure love conditionally and think it the unconditional love of the infinite.  We are apologetic and blame it on us being sinners saved.  And all the while we will not put down our religious measuring tapes and church institution counting equipment.

I was taught that the cross is a doorway to heaven.  That no one comes to the Father but through Me.  That I must be saved.  That I am saved.  That I must save others.  If they fit the definition of the finite.  If the finite rules the infinite.  Seems to me that measuring and counting the rights and wrongs of “same sex relationships” is so very very OT.  So very very finite.  So very very conditional.  Just like we have made the cross.  Just like we make God made man.  Just like we count each Christian.

Why do we still want to count?
Why do we still need to measure?
Why do we still not want to get it?

.

 

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7 thoughts on “Look at the cross (and measure)

  1. Pingback: Love your enemies | Church Set Free

  2. then my “brother,” how do we measure “SIN” which is in opposition to God? Love is action, NOT feeling, you can say you LOVE everyone, but what are you doing (hypothetical, in general) to demonstrate it. I can only truly LOVE those I have some connection with, and let’s not forget, Love, Unconditional TRUE, AGAPE love is not dependent on whether I agree with one’s lifestyle or not! Otherwise, compromise and enabling takes the place of TRUE, Godly Love. “for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.” — 1 Peter 1:16.

    TRUE, GODLY, AGAPE love does NOT conform because it FEELS the right thing to do, it does not enable to continue in what God deems is Sin, but rather it does point to the Cross, despite the sin. Whether the sinner accepts that ACT of love is up to them — I can continue loving by, praying AND pointing to the Cross, but I cannot MAKE or force someone to accept that act of love.

    Just something to think about. We ALL sin in some way or another, whether by thought or deed and we have the Cross (as Christians) to continue to turn too, but what if someone doesn’t WANT the Cross or want to actively repent? We still love by praying for them, if they hurt us directly (or even indirectly) we still forgive them (as an ACT of Love) but we don’t enable their thinking that continual sinning is alright! That is what the World and the philosophies of the World (in some of our churches) is doing today and Christians have to rise above that rather than succumbing to the “world’s standards” of the “norm!”

    • Hi Roland. I am not sure I want to measure sin. I am not even sure how to measure sin. But I am sure I don’t want to measure it. Or else I look for sin and not love. And I think if I look for love I am looking for the right measure without measure.

      And is love an action only? And if so, is “action” a thought, a shared moment, a state of being as much as a doing of measure? And if only an action of doing of measure – why measure at all?

      I am not sure I know any longer what is continual sinning. The more I look for love, the less I know of sin. But I am sure I want to rise above the norm and look no more for sin but only love.

      Paul

      • If you are afraid to identify (measure) what is and is not sin, then how can you direct others or yourself to love as God loved by giving Himself for those who DO sin. It is just like the world philosophy “if you don’t agree with me then how can you love me?” “if I recognize sin in the world or what God says is sin, how can I love others?” Jesus showed how, by condemning sin and yet going to the Cross as an act of love for sinners. He doesn’t enable sin by agreeing with it, because He died for it, He has instructed us (through the Holy Spirit and His disciples) to acknowledge it, point out that it leads to death and then point the way to the CROSS the ultimate ACT of Love. It’s in the Scriptures, laced in every book from Genesis to Revelation. I don’t have to philosophy about it, I just have to accept what God Almighty through the power of His Holy Spirit tells all of us in His Living Word. This is why, as prophesied so many times in the Word and in the past we see, a “church, having a FORM of godliness, but denying the “true” spiritual power of Real Godliness. It has become like a cancer, the Bible calls it YEAST or Leaven that is affecting the whole loaf and the ONLY hope for it, is to NOT be afraid of hurting the world’s feelings or what the world things and standing on God’s Truth and not man’s perceived truth. Loving the sinner, whatever the sin is a “no-brainer” but doing it (notice I said DOING – an action) while not enabling or becoming indifferent to sin is not the ETERNAL definition of true, Agape, unconditional Love. Remember, the Truth IS SUPPOSED to set us FREE if the Bible is truly correct.
        We don’t have to preach or harp on sin everyday. Most people know when they are not doing right, but we shouldn’t also ignore it altogether because there are those who believe to do so is not loving!
        And “measuring” sin was only a descriptive way of saying identifying sin for what it is. A true Christian knows what sin is without having to analyze it, because our spirit should be free from the bonds of it. Because we are free from the destruction of it doesn’t mean that when we displease our Heavenly Father we no longer need to ask forgiveness for the act of displeasing Him.
        I have friends and acquaintances who are actively living in sin. I still visit with them and I never mention my disagreement with their lifestyles UNLESS they, themselves bring up the conversation or ask me about a subject that is indicative of their lifestyle. They already KNOW how I feel and yet they are comfortable or at least tolerant of ME because I don’t confront them every time I see them. They KNOW I pray for them, because from time to time, I tell them, “will be praying for you.” I hope that my accepting their friendship will let them know I love and care for them, while at the same time, not feeling put off because I am criticizing or preaching hell-fire and brimstone to them. But enable them? They know my stand. They also know (because they are friends) that I am not perfect. But I openly as forgiveness, and I openly thank God, through Christ Jesus for HIS forgiveness. They KNOW what I believe and stand for. That is also love in action. They have no fear coming to me for something whether material or emotional if they have a need. But I have had some acquaintances in the past who decided they did not feel comfortable around me because of what I believe. I never pushed myself on them and if I see them I still greet them without condemning or sentencing them! But, it is THEIR choice to accept my friendship or not. THAT is also love in action. But in none of these relationships will I ever or have I ever (to my knowledge) enabled their sin or encouraged their sin.
        Love covers a multitude of sins (transgressions) 1 Peter 4:8. This doesn’t say that love ignores the sin or is indifferent to it as so many would make it say; rather it means (Just as God Almighty loves ALL His creation) we can love one another, even in their sinfulness, remembering that we ourselves were in the same place! It doesn’t mean we never mention sin in general for fear of hurting feelings, but rather we are willing with a truthful answer that CAN (if allowed) lead to victory over sin. You cannot lead someone to victory over sin if “love” (I use that loosely) prohibits you from being able to acknowledge or explain sin. True love, acknowledges that there IS darkness, but that the LIGHT overcomes even the greatest darkness. Now THAT is REAL love!
        ’nuff said, I’ve rambled on enough. One final thought though. 1John is my favorite book. It is often said to be the “book of love” when it comes to our relationship with God and each other.
        But — have you read Jude recently? It is pretty much described as a “commentary” on teachers or teaching, and our responsibility. I haven’t read it for a little while, but I guess it’s time to get back into it.

        Roland

        • Hi Roland – thank you for the compliment of teacher. I never think of myself as that. Merely another on the journey we all journey.

          I started to reply here and found a post bubbling up – for it seem to me that this (same gender and all that goes with it on all sides) is not “the issue”.

          Rather how we approach “this (one) issue” is symptomatic of how we journey our own journey with others.

          I am curious – does today’s post, “Break not just bread”, change anything?

          Paul

          • The Epistle of 1 John has always been a favorite of mine, it explains so much. I read it again, slowly, last night. Reading it in the context with which it was written and not taking favorite verses out of context and all it does is CEMENT even more what I feel is the Lord’s, yes even GSHJ attitude towards sin. As for labels, well in human nature, labels have always caused people to stumble and I’m afraid that even today when it comes to what a REAL Christian is, it is muddied in the philosophies of the world and those who think they are Christ-followers because they believe in a god. I don’t know about England, but in the U.S.A. it’s reported 84% of people are “Christians.” But — you are right for it was NOT Jesus that called followers Christian, it was those who witnessed the disciples and followers of Jesus a while after His death to designate them from the rest of the “cults” that were continually arising.
            As with anything, due to man’s human nature (fallen nature) we ALL take things at some point to an extreme — too much “love” and ignore the existence of sin, too much sin and not enough Agape, unconditional, Godly Love. Anyway, I have come to learn that when people want to philosophy the Bible, they do so with their minds set in the world. The Bible is literally Christ in text, even from the OT to the NT and to understand the person of Christ, you have to accept it ALL and not just the parts that are convenient. Prophets Old and New warned of the dangers of not taking the Word’s spiritual meaning in its fullness and I’m afraid we are seeing it in “religious” organizations ALL over the world, not just in America. The prophesies of the end times condition of the so-called “church” are rising apparent like dandelions in a beautiful manicured lawn! The dandelions look pretty, until you see what they do to the rest of the grass. The Church is made up of a membership of true believers and there is no individual, (including myself) who keeps the roster, BUT, Matthew 7 DOES give us an insight into what we might see and what doesn’t belong.
            Sin, negatively, just as Agape Love, positively, will dictate the Bride, the Body of Christ whom the Bridegroom will come to collect. If we don’t have enough love to point out, as the Apostles before us did, that sin does and will separate us from the Heavenly Father Who sent Redemption through Jesus, the Christ, then we who say and should be truly loving have NOT done what was commanded.
            Again, I do NOT say we should be preaching hell-fire and brimstone at every turn, I for one don’t like that kind of preaching, but at the same time, I will NOT be afraid to mention the pitfalls of hell, but the Salvation that will save us from them, if the opportunity should come up.
            I am not looking to be a member of an elite human club that accepts the lifestyles of everyone no matter what in the name of a distorted and twisted ideal of what real love is. As the Word says, I am in this ole world, but I am NOT of it and that DOES separate me from the majority and it does NOT allow me to break bread with just anybody. Love them, by doing what I can for them when an opportunity arises? Yes, despite anyone’s lifestyle or what they choose to do with their lives, I will show them love and I don’t need to ask them what lifestyle they have, but I also will not hesitate to point ANYONE to the Light of Christ and His ability to make everything right. Stuck in concrete? Only from the perspective of those who are willing to conform to demonstrate a skewed view of what they “THINK” is love. For me, I have a Living Book that tells me what love is and that is my guide and not what “seems” right in my own mind.
            There are too many Scriptures that point to Christ’s Redemptive mission, and too many Scriptures ignoring that fact that He didn’t come (not yet anyway) to make peace. Christ came to DIVIDE the wheat from the chaff, and that is the only Division He is interested in. Sadly there will be those who stand before Him on the judgment day and say to His face, “I did this and that and all these other things, in your name — I am worthy,” and He will look at them with sadness in His heart and tell them, “depart from me you workers of lawlessness for I never KNEW you!” In other words, they used His name, but they never had a relationship with Him personally or even ASKED Him if it was alright to use His name; why, because they didn’t take the time to build a relationship with Him, but rather only knew ABOUT Him. In today’s parlance, I would call that Identity Theft, and that is a sin that leads to eternal death. (Matthew 7)
            It pains me to see, when the Scriptures are so clear on so many subjects, people trying to make the Scriptures appetizing to everyone at the cost of the TRUTH, whether concerning sin, OR love.
            There is a way that seems right to a man, but the path thereof leads to death.
            The world wants to be accepted without question for the deeds it does, without critique, without blame, and the Word of God is saying, “come out from among the world and be separate.”
            Anyway, the world is going as the Prophets have prophesied. The “church” is going as the Prophets and Apostles have prophesied and it is getting even worse. The plus side to all of this — it means that Christ Jesus will be breaking the clouds very shortly and then truly, after a short spell, every knee WILL bow and every tongue WILL confess that Jesus is Lord. What it won’t mean is that everyone who does that will be redeemed and that part breaks my heart.
            So, all I can do is keep praying, keep TRYING to tell the truth, that there IS a love that can overcome a REAL sin, but repentance is 180 degrees from real sin and the Agape Love can give people the power to make that turn.
            Sadly, when I see those trying to philosophize sin and make the sinner “comfortable” I will have to, just like the teachers of old, point out the truth and the pitfalls of sin, but give them the HOPE that is found in a REDEEMER Who truly does still HEAL the spirit and loves unconditionally, letting the hearer know the choices are in their hands.
            Hope the weather is nice where you live. Here in Delta, the heat is dying down a bit and looking forward to the fall. Please keep Texas and the Caribbean in your prayers – Harvey is dying, but Irma is gaining strength.
            God bless and protect you and strengthen you in YOUR journey!

  3. Pingback: The teaching of my time | Just me being curious

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