A PASSION FOR LIFE
Religion will lead us to obsess over pointless things. We need to keep in mind that God proclaimed everything good. Original Blessing is God’s realm. Not original sin. By drawing us into Himself and his trinitarian relationship, God draws us into His life. Jeff Turner writes,
“I see Paul’s experience as being much more than just an isolated case, but a microcosm of the human race when it operates out of the knowledge of good and evil. It breeds a passion within us, though not a passion that is towards God. Rather, it creates in us a passion that is against things which we feel would offend Him. In Acts 2:40, the Apostle Peter, speaking to a crowd of devoutly religious Jews, implores them to flee from what he calls an “untoward generation”: …Save yourselves from this untoward generation … ACTS 2:40. Interestingly, the Greek word for “untoward” is the word skolios , which can literally be translated as crooked or twisted, and is the root of our English word scoliosis , a condition in which one’s spine is twisted or crooked.” (1)
ON THIS MOUNTAIN OR IN JERUSALEM?
The woman at the well wanted Jesus to tell her where to worship. Jesus replied, “Believe me, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. He meant that people would worship in His life. Should she have asked Jesus what day on which to worship the answer would be similar. In Jesus worship is a life and we and our life in Him are the sacrament. This is infinitely more Godly than sacralising times and places. We can do better than a holy life. In Jesus we get a ‘living life.’
‘Untoward’ attitudes belong to the religious – not to overtly bad people. Crooked righteousness need not be deeply immoral behavior – just a form of godliness without power or spirit and life. It’s not uncommon for Neo-Platonism to promote itself as godliness. Some so called prophetic writings are almost entirely the a fabrication of Neo-Platonism – a horror of matter and a glorification of mind. Genuine holiness is Christ come in the flesh – Christ come as you.
RIGHTLY DIVINING THE WORD OF TRUTH
It is foolishness to ban things that God has made and we do well to obey the command to ‘not call evil what God has called good’. With His life Christ has abolished the artificial divisions of the knowledge of good and evil and drawn us into Himself so that we live in union with Him as sons to express the righteousness of sons. This occurs because of grace. A grace so profound that we are not only forgiven. Christ becomes us. We know this as the incarnation. John called it Christ come in our flesh.
Spirit and life makes us alive and holy. Spirit and life is not some isolated abstraction. It’s simply Christ in us. God in you makes you more human not less. Beware mental illness masquerading as godliness and prophecy entering the stage as depression or a bi-polar condition.
(1) Turner, Jeff. Saints in the Arms of a Happy God: Recovering the Image of God and Man (p. 28). Jeff Turner. Kindle Edition.