Jesus was forever going against the flow.
Instead of holding to the laws and customs, He challenged them. Instead of taking the pain-free route, He walked the route of the hurting.Instead of remaining clean according to Jewish custom, he soiled Himself to bring the Good News to those who needed to hear it. The outcast. The downtrodden. The rejected. He brought Himself.
The Best news.
Jesus is the “lover of our souls.” Do we really understand what the love looks and feels like? If we do, are we showing that same love to others and fulfilling the most important commandment? I talk about love a lot the last few years. And grace. It’s all about grace.
I never understood that before.
Grace reveals love.
Performance doesn’t cut it for me. It shouldn’t cut it for you. It’s not that I’m not good at it, actually at one time, I would have run circles around your self-righteousness and good works.
I was a perfect legalist. My “trust” was so great I buried a child by “trusting” God. It “exceeded the Pharisees.” Or so I believed.
After all “Divine healing was provided for in the atonement. It was a right and privilege of the believer.” ” Claim it by faith”(Is. 53; IPet etc…). And if you can’t believe for a physical healing which you can see, which is nothing more than just flesh and bones, how can you believe that you are saved, your rotten sin forgiven.” Which is the greater miracle?
Yes, being forgiven is even greater than being healed – but we are forgiven. That is the point. It’s all about Jesus. It’s all about grace.
We were willing to trust unto death. I could have died, my husband nearly did. Our son did. Total trust. Can you say that?
Yeah, my “righteousness” was right up there with the Pharisees. May have even “exceeded the Pharisees.
I was all about the bible- all about doctrine as we were taught it. King James only, skirt wearing, no TV, only Christian praise, submissive to our husbands, only Christian authors of books, homeschooling, Patriarchal, family driven, “quiver-full,” no drinking, smoking, dancing, swearing, no divorce ever, debt free-living only, “I Kissed Dating Good-Bye”, no “worldly toys or Barbie’s, no women in preaching, no Christmas, “Ishtar” Halloween, no oaths, etc. etc…divine healing only Pharisaical cult.
Oh, but that was you, look at how extreme you were?
Really? Start picking and choosing which ones you adhere to as the law for yourself and others? Feel free to add to the list because it really is quite extensive within all of our many denominations and fellowships of Christian believers.
It didn’t feel much like a gift back then.
It was in the beginning when Jesus spoke into my heart. In the quiet of my home when I read Evidence that Demands a Verdict, and I made an intellectual choice that Jesus is God and I would follow him. It was a gift then, when the Holy Spirit came to me and whispered, “I love you. You don’t need drugs or cigarettes any more. We love you no matter what, and we will stay with you forever. Absolutely everything you have ever done is forgiven, and you will live and walk in that forgiveness. Just hold on to my hand and never let go and I will be here for you through good times and bad.”
Then the law entered. The people who knew about the ways of God began telling me how I could “please” Him. I’d been given the “gift of God,” and now I needed to learn how to use it correctly. If I didn’t, it may be returned. It could be taken away.
“No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Rom 8:37-39
I was the woman in the circle, caught in adultery. Everyone was holding a stone to throw at me – the Pharisees, my brethren. They were there to reveal a law I was breaking, a sin I was in, something about me I had to change.
There was something innately wrong with who I was. I learned how to throw stones right back at them. Big ones. Deadly ones. Even my own family was subject to the painful stones of legalism.
But Jesus stayed in that circle with me and shielded me from the stones that would kill me. He allowed only those stones that caused me to look my accusers in the eyes and say, “Enough, He does not condemn me, so you can’t.” He has taken the rocks from my hands, and as the circle dissipates, I can walk away in peace.
Free. No more death in our lives. No more anger, pain, or betrayal. No more law.
There will always be rocks (especially for women), but I don’t have to accept them. Jesus is there to deflect the laws that people hurl. He will always go against the flow to save a Samaritan like me. The Pharisees all thought He was going the wrong way too. The free gift is too easy. It feels like the wrong way. He hands us this gift of salvation and we think we need to pay for it. We tell others they need to pay for it.
The gift is free. The gift makes us free.
I am so thankful that Jesus walks the wrong way. The wrong way path Jesus takes us on is miraculous. While you journey, you experience all kinds of adventures wrought with danger, pain, suffering, joy, peace, love, grace, fear, courage, empathy – growth and vision.
Lots of growth. Lots of vision.
I get to see the world through His eyes on this wrong way road.
And His eyes see the beauty in all things.
“Whenever, though, they turn to face God as Moses did, God removes the veil and there they are—face-to-face! They suddenly recognize that God is a living, personal presence, not a piece of chiseled stone. And when God is personally present, a living Spirit, that old, constricting legislation is recognized as obsolete. We’re free of it! All of us! Nothing between us and God, our faces shining with the brightness of his face. And so we are transfigured much like the Messiah, our lives gradually becoming brighter and more beautiful as God enters our lives and we become like him.” 2 Cor. 3:16-18