/*Adopt Ye, One Another, Even as I Have Adopted You: August 2006*/

"Adopt Ye, One Another, Even as I Have Adopted You..."

Not Shaker Theology, not a cult and not any sort of propaganda. An approach, by Heaven's Grace, to the Kingdom of God and His Righteousness. Do you want to see it? Do you want to see the Kingdom Of Christ? Say yes.


Hopeless, Pointless, Useless except for the Grace of God

Monday, August 21, 2006

What is it with these "vulnerable" people?

By now you're worn out with me telling you that Christians "adopt"
those who are "vulnerable, relative to ourselves" (And by golly, we
Christians make ad0pting vulnerable people an even higher priority
than reproduction! Right?) But just who are they? What's so
significant about 'vulnerability' and why should Christians care
about 'vulnerable' people?

Well, duh! Compare yourself to The Eternal Living God in Christ.
Are you 'vulnerable', relative to Him? So, what does HE do on
behalf of those who are 'vulnerable' relative to God? (C'mon,
c'mon, you read the Bible. What's it say?) Well, beginning
WAAAAAAY back at the start of the Bible, God shows up with
this 'adoption thing' for just about anybody that's vulnerable.

Take the old "Mistake with the Snake" story, with guest
appearances by Adam and Eve. When they made themselves
unwelcomed in the Garden, who shows up with "garments of
skin for Adam and his wife'? (Ge 3:1-24) And even though Adam
and Eve had blown their first job assignment, who was it that made
it possible for them to have a lower tier (though not all together
unmeaningful) position to work out a modest living on some of God's
other property (though they had NO prior experience and while they
still paid NO taxes)? That 'who' would be The Almighty God, Himself.
And they were no longer what He had created! They belonged to NO
ONE! But, whether we like it or not, God 'adopted' them!

Okay, now, flash forward to the time of the ancient Israelites.
(Exodus 4:22 and reference Hosea 11:1) Those folks were NO
people but the Living God made them HIS people. Accept it! He
They were vulnerable, they were oppressed and NO, they didn't
deserve God's favor (Do you? Do I?) But HE claimed them with
all of their diseases, all of their whining, all of their blindness (and
their pitiful flat bread, to). Do you get the picture? He ADOPTED
a WHOLE NATION! (Though I probably would have encouraged
Him to include a clause limiting His liabilities.)

Now, it seems these days that bunches of so-called 'Christians'
want there to be an 'Old Testament' without there being a 'New
Testament'. Sorry, if you're really a Christian, it doesn't work
that way. (Back in my day, we were trying to have a New
Testament without having an Old Testament. It doesn't work that
way either!) So, the Old Testament necessarily points to the New
Testament and the New Testament is ALL ABOUT the Cross.
There's no way around it. And the Cross (and the resurrection of
Jesus) is all about the end of the world as you and I and everyone
else has known it! The Cross is all about The Eternal Living God
making a way for you and me to be 'adopted' (reconciled) into the
family of God. By the blood of The Lamb, you and I have been given
a new bloodline and a new family! That's the END of the old way and
the old world! (Did you guys notice?)

We who were NO people are now - by rebirth and by Grace through
faith - HIS people. (Now, just what part of God's adoption of you
and me do you not understand?)

You didn't deserve it and neither did I. It's, umm, what those
theological people call "unmerited Grace" (hey, it works for
me). We're now a part of God's family!

Now, do we HAVE to adopt, just because we've been adopted?
Let me put it this way: my interpretation of John 13:34 is
Jesus saying "YOU WILL adopt others, just as I have adopted
you". Now, God's commandments are all also promises when
they're empowered by The Holy Spirit. So, to me it's a pretty
clear sign that I've been REALLY adopted by God when I'm
motivated to adopt other people into His family. In other
words, The Holy Spirit enables me to live out that commandment
as a promise!
So, if I'm not interested in adopting vulnerable people into the
Family of my Heavenly Father, I have to wonder about my own
'adoption'. Can I even really be a Christian if I am not adoptive?

"Gee, what happened to my rejoicing at being claimed by The
One God Eternal? Where's my power to claim the 'vulnerable'
people as family?" (Maybe I need another dose of 'adoption',
or maybe I need a BUNCH more of the Holy Spirit's indwelling,
ya think?)
"Wasn't I blessed to be a blessing? Wasn't I rescued to be a
rescuer?" Then, on the other hand I'm asking God, "Lord,
why can't all these icky 'vulnerable' people be more like me?"
And of course, the point is, those 'icky' vulnerable people are
EXACTLY like me and they need to be shown some of the same
unmerited Grace that "works" for me.

So, that's what "IT" is with these 'vulnerable' people. They ARE
my sisters and brothers. They ARE my sons and daughters and
if you are a Christian, they are YOUR family as well. Our calling
is to claim them, to ADOPT them. Anything that hinders my
doing exactly that is an idol. Yes, I have to work. God provides
resources to me through my work. I am to use those resources
on behalf of adopting vulnerable people, just as I have been
adopted. To a cynic, the 'vulnerable people' are the "low hanging
fruit". We should be able to get them into God's family easily! Are
they gonna be resource intensive? You betcha. But many of them
will be willing to be adopted into the Kingdom of God and will be
to adopt others, as well. Besides, vulnerable people are
LOOKING for mercy. The 'well-off' unchurched are not looking
for a Savior. Reaching the 'successful' people for the Kingdom of
Heaven is iffy ("why should they change?")

Nope, I can't tell you exactly how your adopting vulnerable people
will work out in your walk of faith. I will tell you very flatly that
adopting vulnerable people is REQUIRED of us while reproduction
is only a privilege. We Christians demonstrate our love for Christ
Jesus by obeying His commandments and by prioritizing His
commandments above our privileges. To behave otherwise is
"Adopt ye, one another, even as I have adopted you..."

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Well, Did You Get Crucified or Somethin'?

It seems that every day, someone else claiming to be a
'B.A.B.B.F.E.C.C.' * wants to get up in my face about how they want
this country to be a 'Christian' nation. Most of them go away REAL
mad when I ask them if they have been crucified today with Christ
Jesus. The others go away trying to think of something to say back
to me. Let them stew.

While I know I that I am STOOPIDly ignorant about what it means
to be a Christian, I do at least understand that it means daily
crucifixion with Him. That means that my plans go away to be
replaced by HIS plans. That means that I become a servant (washing
feet and stuff). ALL of my purpose is then focused on HIS Kingdom
and HIS reconciliation. When I am crucified with Him, I am no
longer in pursuit of 'The American Dream' ("A house and a spouse
and kids and pets and toys!"), nor am I any longer pursuing personal
genetic legacy, nor my personal empire.

So, are you ready to be a reconciler? Are you ready to wash the
feet of your enemies? Are you ready for this nation to be crucified -
EVERY DAY - with Christ Jesus? Are you prepared that EVERY
resource available to you and to me would be expended on behalf
of reconciliation of the outcast, the diseased and the discarded?
That is EXACTLY what Jesus did for us and that is EXACTLY what
this nation will do for Him if we are to be a 'Christian' nation.

There is in our church, a much beloved lady who to me represents
what it means to be a real 'B.A.B.B.F.E.C.C.'. Her time and her
resources are expended on behalf of the special needs young people
who have become a part of our church because of her. Jesus
expended ALL resources to make it possible for special needs
persons - like you and like me - to become a part of His family. He
has adopted
us - by His blood - and if we want to be 'real' Christians,
we will adopt others into His family, OUR family, just as He did and
we will teach those we adopt to adopt others, still!

Is this fair? No, of course not. Is it the only way? Yes, it is unless we
want our nation and this whole world to continue its spiral down and
down into dissolution, violence, despair and madness.

Choose, TODAY.

"Adopt ye, one another, even as I have adopted you..."

* Born Again Bible Believing Fundamentalist Evangelical
Conservative Christian

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Who Will Have Dominion?

So, what do you think is God's top priority? Is it 'being Godly'? Is it
'being Sovereign'? Is it being 'right'? Whaddya think, really? Well,
of course I'm gonna tell you what I think. I think that among God's
top priorities is 'reconciliation of all creation'. I think that's why He
gave us Jesus of Nazareth (You remember, God's only Son. Yeah,
that Jewish carpenter guy.) So, I'm saying that the fact of Jesus of
Nazareth makes it real OBVIOUS that reconciliation is one of God's
top priorities. God gave Jesus as THE sacrifice to enable
'reconciliation'. He did that!

So, I'm saying that as important as God's ONLY Son is to God, for
God to give Jesus as the sacrifice for reconciliation makes me think
that reconciliation must be REALLY important to God. (Ya think?)

Now, on top of that, God is ultimately in control of everything. Get
it? He DEFINITELY has street cred with this 'dominion' thing. And if
reconciliation of all of creation is among His top priorities, do you
think His emphasis on reconciliation is totally disconnected from His
Dominion over EVERYTHING? (Time's up!) Well, NO!!

"But wait!" you blurt. "Didn't God give us dominion of His creation
back in the ancient scriptures?"

Uh, yeah(duh!) good of you to notice! He did that, BEFORE we
polluted everything with SIN! With our SIN, we made it necessary
for the Lord of all Creation to be sacrificed for reconciliation. So
NOW, if we're gonna have dominion with God, guess what we're
going to have to have as our primary priority? (Time's up!)

REC-ON-CIL-I-A-TION (Can you hear 'Retha singin' that?)

So, I've said all of that to say this: as I write this, there are
nightmarish wars raging all over this world. Also, any number of
'captains of industry' are exploiting God's creation for their very
short-sighted pursuit of wealth and power. Are the wars and
exploitation and empire building giving anyone anything other
than a temporary illusion of dominion? (Time's up!) Well, NO!!

It seems so obvious, doesn't it? I shouldn't even write it down
but YOU KNOW I'm gonna write it anyway:

"If we want dominion with Him over (any part of) His creation,
we will serve in His reconciliation of His creation. And that service
in reconciliation will be among our TOP priorities - just as it is with

Who's Da MAN? The Reconciler, of course. He alone is King, Christ
and God. You want power? You want dominion? Follow the Leader.
Be crucified with Him!
No one does it better. Everything else is just so much futility.
You might use guns, you might use bombs, you might use terror,
or you might use hatred but your dominion by any other method
is temporary! You've got NOTHIN'!! You won't LAST!! Believe it!
There will BE no domination without reconciliation. Get used to it.