One Purpose of 2020

It would seem I have an impression

This year has overturned a lot, whether through injustice, or mistreatment, or improper application of the rule of law, or social norms, or fear, or plague.

And I have a thought or two there, if you will indulge me.

If this plague and series of decisions or judgments is from the L-rd, and if we are dealing with this as something He sent (We know from Scripture the L-rd can send plagues as a form of judgment; Exodus 7-11, Ezekiel 5:17, Ezekiel 14, Revelation 6:7-8), then the overturning is from Him and it is to a purpose.

I see this series of issues for 2020 and I saw and heard a billion words saying 2020 was going to be a restoration of vision.

If that is the case, and we had dead fields that had lain fallow for decades, in the church as well as out, then I surmise the L-rd’s anointing on 2020 was that of a plowshare.

I think the L-rd intentionally has been using this plowshare, if we will receive it as such, as a plow to stir all kinds of things up so He can loosen the dirt and the ground in order to remove the junk and plant the good.

I think He is preparing the ground to place the seed that he wants

“Is not My word as a fire,” saith the L-rd, “and a hammer to break the rocks into pieces?”

I wonder if he is not going to use people like Nancy Pelosi, and AOC, and Donald Trump, and Kamala Harris, and Jo Jorgensen, and Joe Biden, and Barack Obama, and Republicrats to stir us up so that we will seek Him and depend on Him.

Is it possible that 2020 was designed to be a plowshare to level everything and the burn and break up everything so that we were open to the new thing He wants to do.

Can you handle the weight of being plowed in your own heart through the plowshare test of a level of false accusation in order to remove the quick-tempered anger that leads to murder, and that all that is found in you is the righteous anger that leads to correction of injustice and that you would be willing to speak for the correction of systems that breed injustice?

And you can talk about abortion, but that is the least of these problems.

I am talking, for example, about the US Government’s storied history of abusing First Nations through covenant breaking.

I am talking about the institutionalized misogyny practiced against women by religious institutions and the rampant sexism practiced against women like Beth Moore by men claiming the cloth is only allowed to be worn by those with a penis and testes simply because the men’s club of pastor’s in many places believes G-d has male sex organs.

I am talking about the raping of children by Catholic Priests.

I am talking about the church culture that enabled Jimmy Swaggart, and Ted Haggard, and Todd Bentley, and Bob Jones University, and Tullian Tchividjian, Mark Driscoll, and CJ Mahaney to protect, hide, or perpetrate abuse against others.

Our responsibility, in part, is to let the L-rd have His way and to allow Him to plow up everything He wants to plow up, so He can deal with us, and so He can remove the junk He wants to remove.

We cannot call ourselves the spotless Bride if we are going to allow compromise in our midst.

And this includes prophetic words that are improperly given, such as the 13 percent accuracy rate Elijah List tolerates as a solid track record for accuracy in the prophetic.

We are required to come higher and to walk in holiness. Period. Matthew 5:48, Leviticus 19:2.

Plow away, L-rd. We will not stand in the way.

Shine Your light whereever you want to shine it. If that means Democrats and Republicans and Protestants and Catholics are all exposed, then fine.

We will refuse to coach You as to where you want to shine the light.

Remove the junk and the garbage from Your midst.

Dealing with the Mesmerizing Spirit: The Solution

Pick pocket….

Thief….

Stole the ring from us, Precious….

Nasty, filthy little Hobbitses…

Sméagol was full of the Mesmerizing Spirit, which cost him his life in the end.

Give it to us, Deagol, my love…
The end result of we do not lay down our life is this thing can devour our lives.

This spirit is nefarious because it works its way into our lives, and poisons our mind into thinking a part is the whole.

And so…getting rid of it is tough. But it can be done…

There is one strategy that I have seen work time and time again in dealing with the Mesmerizing Soirit, but it gets messy before it gets better.

But it will just about guarantee you victory against the Mesmerizing Spirit, if you are willing to embrace the pain.

Because the MS is not something you can just toss out on a whim and then go back to business as usual.

It got there because we allowed it.

And in American politics this started when we decided a President’s morality didn’t matter.

And it means we as a tribe lay down our rights to coach Father on what to expose (Clinton’s, BLM, Democrats and other pet problems to name a few).

Here goes.

“L-rd, shine your light whereever you want to shine it and keep it there until we see the problem is dealt with.”

What is missing from a lot of our prayers is that we often coach G-d on what needs to be exposed, and that has to stop.

We must make a steel-spines commitment to refuse to coach the L-rd on who or what needs to be exposed.

The first step in dealing with the MS is that you have to admit you do not see the long-game. Period.

And you quit treating the part like it’s the whole.

The second step: with a commitment to not coaching Him what to expose or who to expose, we ask Him to begin shining His light WHEREEVER HE WANTS TO SHINE IT AND WE FIVE HIM FREE REIGN TO DO SO, no matter how painful it gets or how much we don’t like it.

That is how you drain swamps.

I will reemphaize: We do not get the right to tell the L-rd who or what needs to get exposed. Whe we do that, we end up with things like Planned Parenthood and body parts with zero justice executed.

We just get to ask Him to begin the process of shining His light. And then we hold onto our butts, because it will likely get bumpy from there

Especially given there is covenant-breaking that has happened on the part of two major policial parties, given that appears to be the context for this.

Bottom line: we have learned how to ask the L-rd to expose situations that are politicially favorable to our chosen situation.

But when it comes to G-d potentially exposing someone’s son that we want to remain in place, especially if our hypocrisy gets exposed, we put the breaks on that.

When we allow a situation to stand that needs to come down because it has become empowered by our own complacency, then the L-rd can start working.

I say all this in an Arthur-Burk-affiliated group because as we all know, Arthur’s views on the political arena and the Republicans are not like most evangelicals, nay, many believers.

Our job is to resist the temptation to allow someone to use a political issue to manipulate us, which is what is happening.

Several times over.

Our responsibility, because this happens every four years, is to admit our part in allowing favoritism and partiality to deep into how we approach politics.

This is not about protecting Trump. If we want the MS to come down, we lay down the right of our expectation the L-rd protects Trump.

This is about allowing the King to have his full way.

And that comes by refusing to tell Him where to shine his light.

You truly want to deal with and eradicate the Mesmerizing Spirit?

That is fine. But it will cost you everything. Lives. Fortunes. Sacred honor.

And with that, I will yield back the balance of my time to the chair.

Revelation twelve eleven

notlovingmylifesomuchthatishrinkbackfromdeath

Panem Et Circenses

We are told to fight because sometime long ago, our overlords betrayed us.

We are told to fight because it is easier to do what we are told by our spiritual fathers and mothers and coverings and leaders than it is to fight from the resolve our Father gave us.

We are constantly told that abortion is the priority issue and then we are given a script by every prophet and apostolic overseer tells us this is the right course of action.

Meanwhile, they are blinded to every other aspect of every other issue out there.

And much of the church has joined every other caliber of blindness in existence.

I am done taking my orders from dog whistles in the Democrat Party, the Republican Party, The Trump Campaign, any other political party, the apostolic, the prophetic, or any other source…..

At all….

I am done with the bread and circuses that a movement or a group tells me to gather around.

I am done with any sembalnce of pretended objectivity.

I am not going to control another follower of the L-rd with fear or intimidation that if they do not vote for Trump, or Biden, or Jorgensen, they are going to stand before G-d and give an account for why they didn’t vote this guy or that woman into office.

This level of control and alienation comes from the Spirit of Python, and I am NOT buying the garbage of control that flows from fivefold “prophets” and “apostles”.

I am done with the manipulation, the mezmerising spirit, and the blindness. If you are a card-carrying Republican, Democrat, or single issue voter incapable of seeing the whole picture, because you are allowing yourself to cut everything off for the sake of a golden calf, you will not find what I am about to say very useful.

YOU MUST RESIST THE MESMERIZING SPIRIT THAT IS TAKING HOLD RIGHT NOW. Blind people voting from a place of slavery are not liberated people. And liberty, freedom, is dangerous. Full and true liberty, where G-d is not in control, is a terrible thing, especially when someone else has it.

Gang, you have been fighting with carnal and worldly weapons, and I and the L-rd are inviting you to a place where you shun those weapons and the usual arguments for a set of weapons that the election supervisors and the politicians and the carnal or soulish Exhorters cannot leverage, control, or use, but that the Chief Exhorter, the L-rd Jesus Christ, can.

This election and the land are getting toxic, and many of those one “the two sides” are getting toxic. And I am done.

G-d Can’t Be Pro-Life, ‘Cause He Killed Babies…Or Can He (An Analysis of Some Texts, Using Other Texts)?

AN INTRODUCTION AND SOME CUSTOMARY PROVOKING STATEMENTS

Because New York passed an abortion law or some such thing, people all of a sudden have started to talk about and exegete the news.


It has been raised as an argument against those who might be pro-life that G-d cannot be pro-life, since, in the Bible, and specifically, in the Torah, he killed babies.


I rarely discuss current events at the same time they are happening. But today I will make an exception.
ollie north
Check that. Two exceptions.


#elliotabrams

It is uncomfortable to talk about how unrighteous our government’s actions are in the area of abortion and talking about how righteous a pro-life stance is, while turning the blind eye to the warhawking anti-life nature of conducting police state actions overseas, that are the purview of Republicans and Democrats alike.

Back to what I was talking about, seriously. Sometimes we want to excuse our government’s stupidity by an appeal to one issue, when there are a breadth of issues at play. And such exegesis gets sloppy.

Some days, our exegesis, which can turn to support one group or party over another, is only painted with broad strokes that Scripture does not use.

And when it comes to Scripture, sometimes our exegesis boils down to making sure that the G-d in the right hand side of the Bible apologizes for the actions of the G-d in the left hand side of the Bible.


But here is how I would processionally explain the actions of the G-d on the left hand side of the book, in seven elements.

Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today, and forever. Hebrews 13:8

PREFACING THE SEVEN ELEMENTS: IS HE REALLY AS MEAN AS SOME SAY?

Consider also the fact that the “kinder, gentler” guy on the right hand side of the book, at the end of the right hand side, plagued the whole earth and wiped out a million here and there, in case we think the guy on the right hand side has more reformed ways.


Translation: parsing the Old Testament G-d and the New Testament G-d out from each other as distinct causes the whole book to fall apart greatly. Truly, they are one and the same. Revelation teaches us that. And His Judgment is His mercy.

BACKGROUND TEXTS FOR RECONCILING THE TWO PARTS

G-d, on the other hand, as Scripture RELENTLESSLY teaches throughout both the Tanakh and the New Testament, gives space for people to repent and reform before He executes against them.


Cue cluster of texts that show G-d’s mercy and granting people space and breathing room to repent before He judges.

  • Jonah 3-4, where G-d relents/repents after the capital of the flaying Assyrians repents.
  • Revelation 2:21, where G-d gave Jezebel space to repent
  • Genesis 15:16, where G-d gave the Amorites space to repent, that He didn’t have to, and would have caused something to work out between Israel and the Amorites had they repented.
  • Genesis 18:17-19, where G-d debated what he would share with Abraham, knowing Abraham’s righteousness, knowing Abraham’s heart to cry out for mercy, and knowing that Abraham was able to affect G-d’s heart because Abraham was the friend of G-d in only the way Givers can be.
  • Deuteronomy 2:9 and Judges 11:17, where G-d gave Moab their land, and commanded Israel not to harrass them, even before Moab fought against Israel (Joshua 24:9). This could have led to Moab’s national repentance and a reconciliation and commerce between Moab and Israel. And even when the national reconciliation did not take place, G-d STILL played out the drama that should have been between Moab and Israel in the story of Ruth and Boaz.
  • Genesis 46:4, where G-d SENT Israel down to Egypt, and G-d DWELT WITH Israel IN Egypt, and during which season, Israel had centuries to get to know her G-d, and the Amorites had space to repent and prepare the land for the ISRAELITES, which could have happened instead of their destruction.
  • Genesis 47:6, where Pharaoh gave favor to Israel in the land of Egypt and with the pagan ruler of Egypt.
  • Isaiah 19:24-25, where the L-rd will ultimately bring about redemption of the Egyptian nation, and the Egyptian nation will occupy the first place. SECONDLY, <GASP>, pagan, flaying, barbaric Assyria. And third, Israel.
  • Exodus 4:22-23, where G-d first reveals to a pagan nation His name of “Father”. He then commands, before the first drop of water turns to blood and before the first frog touches the land and dies, Egypt to LET HIS SON GO. And then the judgments start and increase.
    • And yes, one can argue G-d kept Pharaoh from repenting, because of Exodus 4:21 and 7:3, but to merely argue that is to see only part of the whole narrative. Psalm 115:16, “the highest heavens belong to the L-rd, but the earth he has given to the sons of men.” G-d has given people free will to choose what they will or will not do. He does not always get what He wants.
  • From the point above, through the entire sequence of issues, the L-rd showed the Egyptians what they had done in infant genocide towards the men of Israel (Exodus 1:22, note the waters turning to blood in 7:17-21 revealed the death that was in the water and the blood that was on the Egyptian hands). The Tenth Plague was the progressive outflow of the response of the Egyptian injustice of Israelite genocide. Again, there are causes and effects. And when you sow the cause, you will reap the effects.
  • Let me point out also the counsel of G-d in Exodus 9:19; He told the Egyptian people to gather their flocks and herds to keep them from the hail. Some listened, and some did not. There were Egyptians who had livestock that kept them in from the hail and their livestock was spared. This opened the door for some of them to turn. G-d uses every circumstance to bring people to Him, including His judgments.
  • Recall also Exodus 12:49, which could plausibly imply that, during the plagues, there were some Egyptians in the nation that chose to follow the G-d of Israel, and chose to align themselves with Israel, and celebrated the Passover. Even if there were none that did actually align with Israel, He still made provision for that.
  • The book of Joshua is completely devoted to the destruction of whole nations while the Israelites possessed the Promised Land.

Element 1: G-d’s decisions, even those decisions that result in human death, are ALWAYS executed in the context of His mercy and His justice, which are the twin facets of His love. What will drive His children to seek Him?


Element 2: G-d’s purposes are aimed at a long-game strategy. He weighs all decisions with an eye toward redemption and how they will impact eternity and His house.


Element 3: G-d aims to eradicate sin, rebellion, iniquity, and abomination from the earth.


Element 4: G-d’s yearning desire is to walk among us, be our G-d, and for us to be His people. Whatever keeps that community from happening He may remove from us.

Element 5: G-d looks for the fruit on the tree. He looks for fresh water or salt, hot water or cold, humility or assertion, upness or downness, filiality or bridality. He looks for consistency that He can utilize. He looks for and brings organized sequence.


Element 6: Sin twists and perverts the good, and that twisting is revealed in the fruit of the tree that is planted. G-d despises things that twist and mar.
Element 7: Everything G-d is, does, or permits to happen is ALWAYS with an eye toward straightening out the twistedness.


Look, it is not like G-d on a bipolar whim massacred millions of innocent babies in an unprovoked rage.

He gave all of these nations, including Mizraim, CENTURIES to repent. And when a culture of death and murder is embraced, somewhere down the line, death is going to be result, and the empire that embraces death is going to self-devour.


He exposed the Egyptian culture for the death-bringing culture it had become. Blood was already in the waters before the first plague. He just forced the nation to see the blood that was in the water. He untwisted the reality of the waters. And in so doing, He allowed all of those baby boys’ blood to testify (Hebrews 12:24).


The Golden Calf is an example of a culture self-devouring. The Levites massacred 3,000 of their own families and so were ordained through G-d’s warring against the defiled spirit of idolatry.


National sin has national consequences. Longstanding sin has consequences. G-d even showed longsuffering toward the residents of Sodom and Gomorrah and the cities on the plain, and Lot interceded for Zoar, and as a result, G-d spared that city.


And one of the names of G-d (Exodus 34:5-6) is The L-rd Who Is Longsuffering.


G-d is not Hitler, G-d is not Pol Pot, G-d is not Stalin, and G-d is not Mao.
And it is not really the church’s job to justify the behavior of G-d to others. G-d can work in, around, and through our objections and the obstacles. But we have to recognize that the principles of Scripture do work. Sexual sin has sexual consequences, murderous sin has murderous consequences. Abortive sin has abortive consequences. Actions do have reactions. Sum of the Forces, Newtonian approximations, and all that jazz.

And Jezebel’s genocide resulted in her blood being shed.


And Naboth’s Vineyard landed on Ahab’s head.


The Principles work, without prejudice, and without caring what you think about how nice G-d or anyone else is.

And ultimately, G-d can work every situation to His glory.


But for us, now is the time to wake up, acknowledge reality in the stead of hiding from it, and bless New York, as we should have, instead of cursing it.

G-d was there first, and this decision on New York’s part is not helped by cursing New York. Rather, gang, let’s not carry on with eighty-five reams of conversation, and instead work with what we know about the Giver and Exhorter design of the state and Manhattan, respectively.


Bless the Giver and the Exhorter dynamic of that state.
Just some thoughts here, gang.

The Faith James Discusses…Life, not Salvation

Faith without works is dead.

You know, someting occurs to me about the faith that G-d intends for us to have.

As a Christian culture, we have grown obsessed with weather or not James is adding to the grace of G-d.

Whether we can remain saved without works.

That might not be what James is discussing.

He might not be talking about faith and the presence of salvation….

Rather, he might be talking about the works of faith as an evidence or absence of life.

We have nad the discussion of grace versus works as what is required for salvation.

That may not be what James has in view.

In view, what James may be thinking about is faith that has works as an evidence of life.

Are we so concerned with whether or not we will get to heaven and everlasting life, that we fail to experience the life He has for us now as well.

If you only ask the two-dimensional question of faith for salvation, and do not step into the fuller faith that shows you have life now and a relationship now.

It appears we have, then, at least two forms of faith.

The faith that leads to salvation, which is solely by grace.

And the faith that breeds life now which is based on works that flow from our love of, devotion to, and relationship with Christ (Matthew 25: The Parable of the Sheep and the Goats).

A dead faith is not a faith that brings out life and it does not flourish.

A preoccupation with grace to the exclusion of works is not a faith that gives.

What we have received as grace, we must give out.

Just like the Sea of Galilee vs. the Dead Sea.

Freely you have recieved. Freely give.

We must move from received grace, to executed grace, which is works, in order to not only be saved, but also show proof we are living.

Words of Wisdom From A Giver

Those of you that enjoy the MCU as much as I do, love picking out various RG’s.
Now, trigger for the death of Agent Phil Coulson of S.H.I.E.L.D. who is in my mind the quintessential Giver. Consider the following words from Coulson’s death.


“This was never going to work if they didn’t have something to….”-Agent Phil Coulson-

Fight for….those would have been his last words.

This was never going to work if they, the Avengers, didn’t have something to fight for.


That is a positive thing that you do, Giver tribe. Your death or your suffering may provide the impetus for the conception and birthing of a new thing G-d is doing in the earth. Keep doing what you do, gang. It’s not over yet.

Consider the following clips.

First, with the Exhorter Tony Stark in three clips, because the Exhorter does things in threes:

And in the presence of the Ruler, Thor, who is learning how to walk in a fathering role, after which he restores to the Prophet Jane Foster her equipment so she can continue her research.

When the Giver tribe walks by faith, they empower those around them to have the catalyst to create a new resource, or their presence causes new resources to come to the fore or be discovered, or for a new project to be risked on and others to put skin into the game after they have made the initial investment.

And then, in the ultimate sacrifice above. Givers, you may be called to put your life on the line, and your death may be the catalyst for the birth of something new.

Leviticus 10:8-9

A couple of thoughts here.

The L-rd said, no strong drinks for the priests.

The meta truth, the behind-the-truth idea He was conveying might have been, “do not engage with any behavior that could impair your judgment and capacity to weigh and decide”.

When we are walking in our offices of priest, pastor, whatever stands in the way of our exercising sound judgment and discernment is something that needs to be put away.

Whether or not we realize it, there is truth and applicable revelation to be had from the pages of the Law.

The L-rd intends us to move through the text and execute its truth for us.

There is a string of decisions made by leaders in the Charismatic Movement that happened because of impaired judgment.

Our responsibility and portion are to keep our wits about us and clothe ourselves with sobriety.

Am I saying we all teetotal are all times? Some may be given that as a permanent or seasonal assignment from G-d, and that is for each of you to work out, but no I am not being legalistic.

However, at the very least, when you are executing in the office of priest to the L-rd, you are in need of sober judgment.

And for those of you who pastor alcoholics or other addictive personalities, you might have to completely turn away from the use of alcohol. It depends on what the L-rd shows you.

I have a pastor friend who was challenged by the L-rd because of his need to be able to pastor alcoholics.

My counsel to you is, whatever you decide, be sensitive to the leading of the Holy Spirit and do what He tells you on this issue.

Some More Thoughts on Nadab and Abihu’s Death

I say “more thoughts” because so believe I have written before on this topic, at least one time.

But these thoughts occurred to me a few minutes ago.

Track with me.

What if the L-rd’s issue with Nadab and Abihu, and the reason he struck them down is because they were interfering with the seven day process of cleansing, consecrating, and ordaining Aaron and them to serve as priests?

What if the events of Leviticus 10:1-2 are their interference and insertion of more action that was not needed into the complex process of preparing the men as priests? Indeed, the L-rd instructed that the men were not to leave the threshold of the tent (8:33).

What if the unauthorized fire they offered interrupted the process of remaining on the threshold of the tabernacle to finish the process the L-rd outlined?

I realize it seems like such a small thing to some, and “all they did was offer a little incense”, but that is missing the point. The point is when the L-rd spoke and gave them a fairly involved process, it was in their best interest to do what He said. Period.

Adding to or taking away from the process that was outlined was a disregard for the L-rd’s requests.

Translation: when the L-rd speaks to you and on those occasions where he spells out what you are to do, then do that.

If you interfere with the L-rd’s instructions, and add your own thing, and leave the threshold of your responsibility to perform some add-on that you thought would be a good thing, when He spells out specifically what He wants to you, then you will have to accept the consequences.

Sometimes the L-rd gives us a blank sheet on which to write, and sometimes he hands us a 37 page instruction manual.

It’s excellent when He speaks, and we must be flexible to dance between those times when He lays out a plan, as with the ten plagues, and times when he tells us to write the script, as at the Red Sea at the Gulf of Aqaba.

But when He prepares a full plan, let’s not edit it.

Just some thought, gang.

From the Desk of Erin Marie Olszewski: Personal Testimony of an RN and Soldier

What does this have to do with my blog?

Simple, gang: the removal of religious liberties.

To be sure, TPH is first and foremost a scriptural exposition site. But closely-linked to this is the application and execution of those principles that are embodied in the life of our Messiah to real situations in life for the upbuilding of the Jesus-follower, that they may continue His work and mission of reconciling us and liberating us from the boot of the tyrant.

Truly, because of the Spirit of G-d, we are able to expand on and defend all that is true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, commendable, and excellent/praiseworthy.

Erin, who is a fellow Florida native, has done her work and fought for our liberties overseas for a season as a soldier, and still fights presently as an RN and BSN.

This is a well-written piece of personal testimony is reposted here with permission:

A few people have asked me to share my Delegation testimony, so here is it…

My name is Erin Marie Olszewski.
I am a mother of three little boys (Dylan, Drew, & Logan). Drew was severely injured by a vaccine.

I am an active registered nurse in the State of Florida and hold a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing. I have nearly two decades of front-line clinical care experience including military training as a combat lifesaver.

That being said, I am also a Combat Wounded Veteran of the United States Army Special Operations Command. I fought to defend and uphold the Constitutional rights of American citizens and lost many friends who fought alongside me. I will not allow their sacrifice to our great country go in vain for 0.00000009% (nine-ten-millionths of one-percent) Florida measles rate.

Therefore, any unsupported legislative bill that threatens religious freedoms of any child or adult of our great nation once again deploys me as a soldier to protect those rights I swore by an oath to defend.

I met in-person with Senator Lauren Book a couple weeks ago to gain an understanding of her knowledge on this issue and found it extremely frightening that she was unable to answer basic biology questions that I asked her. I expected more from someone introducing public health legislation, including a response to the inquiry I sent to her via certified mail.

Although the burden of proof should be on the person who sponsors this legislation, she continues to avoid this responsibility.

Therefore, I would like to provide an accurate, unarguable substantiation that DOES protect citizens from the removal of their religious rights. This comes from a sworn under-oath affidavit made by Theresa Deisher, Ph.D., who holds a doctorate from Stanford University Molecular and Cellular Physiology along with a postdoctoral from the University of Washington.

“I am submitting the known scientific facts about fetal DNA contaminants in current vaccines. In the U.S., as of June 2018, according to the CDC, there are 13 manufactured vaccines containing human fetal cells (MRC-5 and WI-38). More are coming. Anyone who says that the fetal DNA contaminating our vaccines is harmless either does not know anything about immunity and toll-like receptors or they are not telling the truth. The beliefs held by many that the cells and DNA of aborted fetuses are used in vaccines are accurate and until that changes, there will likely be religious objections to vaccinations for this reason alone.”

…but none of this matters as the bill is not being heard and I do respectfully thank Senator Gayle Harrell for this. However, I’m glad I got it on the record so Senator Book and any other legislature considering supporting unfounded legislation such as SB64 can consume it at their own leisure.

I genuinely thank you for your time.

Our Lack of Celebration and Reconciliation Models Present in the Church

In the Torah, the process for returning a leper back to the full community was an involved and multi-step process. It speaks to the celebration of one who has been cleansed.

In much of the modern-day church, the process of restoration is very stripped down, and there is very little in the way of process.

Many times, we come of the law and because we have one or several preachers’ voices yelling in our ears “you are not under the law but under grace” we our of respect to their vehement overapplication of Paul’s counsel, ditch several books’ worth of good teaching, reproof, correction, and training in rightousness, and instead we, with that ditching of counsel, we also have a radically stripped-down version of moving someone, who was separated from the community, back into the community. Our salvation mechanism by which others become entertwined with a household of faith, Roman Catholics, Anglicans Orthodox, and other high-church traditions excepted, has become a community-minimal-investment, five minute prayer at an altar with little deliberate celebration in the life of the church.

Frequently, anything that is more than this is treated as a nusiance by the church because we are not under the law but under grace, and so we do not have much material from which we pull real celebration of someone’s addition to the church.

One area where the Catholics, Anglicans, Orthodox, and like sectors of the church get chatechism (discipleship and integration into the community) right is they draw out the process over the course of weeks and months, make much about someone’s first communion, involve the family, set out special clothing and rites for the occasion, and involve a number of individuals.

We we cut the law out, we cut out, for example, the passage on how lepers are reintroduced into the community.

In Torah, the leper was inspected several times, the priest made several pronouncements, a number of sacrifices were brought, the priest involved with his process left the camp and entered his space, blood was sprinkled on the leper seven times, cedarwod and hyssop were picked, birds were selected, and one of the birds was killed while the other bird was dipped in the sacrificed bird’s blood, that bird was released into the open field, and the leper was pronounced clean. His hair was shaved, and he was reintegrated back into the community.

Contrast that with someone who raises their hand to accept Jesus.

It is just left feeling a little thin.

And our modes for reconciling the backslidden believer are equally thin.

Gang, we have to do better. There could be more of a process that we engage in, so that our celebration more nearly matches that of the angels who rejoice.

I wonder, what that process would look like.

A celebration and a meditation and a retreat where a group of new converts takes away with a priest or rabbi or pastor to a place where they have connection of the deep truth of who G-d is as Father, who Jesus is as Husband, and who Holy Spirit is as Counsellor.

There has to be something more than what we currently do for many new believers.

Just some thoughts here.