"Of God" or "Not of God"
Through conversations over the web, chats with the in-laws, to Bible studies with friends. Some of the topics churned my stomach and made me think really hard, to a point of mental, emotional, and spiritual exaustion.
So now you are probably wondering what made my stomach churn? It all starts with this verse:
Matt 10:33 But whoever denies me before people, I will deny him also before my Father in heaven.Here in America we have it pretty easy. The persecution Christians face might only be a rude comment, a snear, or politcal vice. Sure there have been some pretty serious offenses but in general we have it easy. Are you aware of the atrocities committed against Christians in other countries, all because of their religious affiliation. Voice of the Martyr News Room
With some of the news and scripture I've been reading this week I've been wondering if God is preparing me not for a specific situation but preparing my heart. This is the DUH moment. Of course He has been working on my heart.
I remember back in 1999 Columbine shootings; when asked if she believed in God Cassie Bernall was shot because she said "Yes". Whether that happened exactly like that has been contested, but that scenario plays out around the globe often enough to concern me. Now what if you we presented with that question. If you do believe in God would you have the conviction to say "yes", no matter the outcome. Now escalate that scenario a notch, your family is being held at gun point and asked the same question. Next step up in severity, you, your wife, friend or family is threatened with rape and death. Is there some magical 'grey area' that developes so you can say no and escape harm, you think God can forgive you later, he'll understand; or do you say yes and whatever happens happens. A potential tragedy for sure.
Matt 10:33 But whoever denies me before people, I will deny him also before my Father in heaven.So what churned my stomach was what if this scenario was my life, and this was my wife... my hands shake at the thought, I get choked up, and find it hard to type just thinking about it. I believe God has impressed upon my heart the need to be prepared for the scenario, and hope it never occurs. My heart also mourns for those who face this as a reality daily. www. persecution.com Do I think this will ever happen to me? Does anyone? I pray it never does.
Matt 16:24 Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If anyone wants to become my follower, he must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me.
Whew, take a breath and lets continue...
Second thought of the week is more in line with the title of the blog.
I've had a couple conversations that dealth with the analogy of Black and White viewpoints. Yes, some people wish to add in the 'grey area'. It's just used in conversation, used to represent that uncertain line of thought. Black and White is generally used to represent Good or Bad. With a Christian Theistic Worldview everything you can think of will fall into these two categories as well, but lets define it a step further. Everything in this world will either be 'of God' or 'not of God'. If it's not of God then it is of man or Satan. If something that comes up and you aren't sure which way it would go you might be tempted to try and put it into the 'grey' area, but really it just means you haven't explored and understand the nature of God enough. I've temporatily put a few things into the grey area this week, and have tried to take time and discover more about God. I have sought to deapen my relationship with God to know his will, by knowing his nature.
One aspect that I haven't had closure on yet is one that is close to my heart. Star Wars Roleplaying. I don't put it into the more obvious categories of idol worship, magic, or witchcraft. I've gotten rid of my Dungeons and Dragons collection(polytheistic, magic, cultic) and don't mess with the Harry Potter series (witchcraft, gateway to the occult). There is no such thing as a good witch. I have a saying "Don't let your games make you, you make the game." Let your morals guide a game, don't let a game develope your identity. I generally think that as long as I can read my Bible more than I read Star Wars, and don't hold it up as an idol, I'm doin OK. It's a source of entertainment, I can bring my Christian Theistic Worldview to the game. I can participate and have fun without taking part in something that is anti-Christ.
Which brings me to my next question up for discusion.
What would Jesus think about fantasy? Jesus often uses parables in the Bible, but those are still in the realm of possibility. The stories are drawn from reality. Does Jesus ever use fantasy? Would he have an issue using it for entertainment or story telling? I think that God blessed us with imagination and creativity and we can honor him when using it positively. I refer to "The Lord of the Rings" and "Chronicles of Narnia" Both written by men with Christian Worldviews. (side note: Both use the sacraficial character architype like Jesus, but aren't supposed to be a story of Jesus.) Would Jesus be dissapointed at these two works?
I'm exausted and await any thoughts...