“Christian Mystic & Church History” P-5

20171021_171413 And so the plot thickens and the mystery continues. As I have been self-educating on this subject of Church History, a couple of questions have caught my curiosity, and this also pertains to Christian Mystics. As I have said, as I studied the Mystics I saw a need for knowledge of the history. It all ties together.

Question #1.) Why have none of my Protestant churches educated me on early church history, especially those first 200 years when transition from the Apostles, who actually walked with Christ, was changing to those who had only walked with the Apostles, and then to those who had not even had that privilege. In my humble opinion, this would be an extremely important time period of the evolution of the church. After all, if these early church fathers changed things from what Christ had started, then why? And would Christ have been in agreement with such a change? And how does the church of that first 200 years compare to what I experience today? (Hhmmm.)

And if this is as important as I think it is, then why haven’t I been taught of it? Are they trying to hide something? I’m not saying our preachers never mention the early church and give an impression of teaching the subject, but in my experience, very little details have ever been given. Is it a subject only for Bible College? I think not. It’s too important! It’s foundational! It reveals if we have been faithful to the early church fathers, OR NOT.

Question #2.) The main church history book I was using, was written by a Catholic Priest, but it was supposed to cover from Pentecost to the year 2000. Well, it sort of did, and it sort of did not. As I searched other sources I began to notice 3 names not mentioned in my book. Upon further examination, I discover these 3 Bishops were of “major” importance during those first 200 years! Why would such important Bishops fail to be mentioned by this Catholic Priest? Was not the church one church at that time? Would they not be a part of the history leading to the Roman Catholic Church? How do you miss speaking of : Bishop Clement of Rome, Bishop Ignatius of Antioch, and Bishop Polycarp of Smyrna? Three major players! Again, is someone trying to hide something? A personal agenda? A personal bias?

Well, I don’t know yet, but I have bought more books and am studying like crazy. One book is aprox 1,350 pages long! Thank God for Amazon! But we need to look at our first Mystic! Believe me, more will be said on these other guys when I have a little better handle on this. Little by little it is coming. I’m like a spiritual hound dog on a hot trail! I’m a Retriever trying to “bring back” (fetch) something hidden in time, but not lost!

Our first Mystic I have chosen is a man known as, “Origen”. He lived aprox A.D. 185-254, and he is an amazing story. But I want to give you a juicy part first, so you will want to know him. In Origen, I see the heart of a Christian Mystic. We ask our self, “Just what makes a Christian Mystic?” I’m looking for the “simple” answer to that, and I think, without knowing it, Origen may have expressed it when he was explaining the 3 different levels of meaning to scripture.

Origen was the first Christian translator of the Old Testament Book: “Song of Song” (Solomon). He used it to explain these three different levels of meaning to any given scripture. He explained, on the first level the Song of Songs is simply a wedding poem showing the intimate love between a rustic bride and a royal bridegroom. On the second level it represents Christ’s love for his church. On the third, mystical, level it expresses the deep yearning of the soul to be made one with the divine Word. (WOW!)

My simple understanding of a C.M. is someone who is totally in love with Christ, the church, and his Word! Origen’s example of level 3 is such an expression of such a person. The Mystic is a Mary, not a Martha. But most Mystics also believed their private contemplations in solitude should also lead to godly actions in public. Most Mystics were not hermits hiding in a cave somewhere. They may have had their cave moments, and trips into the desert, but those deep places with God were meant to also bear fruit in the physical world of hurting mankind.

Mystics have a deep love for all things Spirit, and as such they often lived ascetic lives which simply means “self-denial for spiritual reasons”. Fasting would be an example of such. Putting a brother before yourself. Keeping things simple, to be non-materialistic. (Of course, there are different levels of such things.) One might think of our Lord’s words when he said, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross daily, and follow me. If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it.” (Luke 9:23-24 NLT)

Asceticism is sometimes referred to as spiritual training, or to be a spiritual athlete. Christian Mystics pursued such paths, but again, the training was supposed to also bear fruit that would bring glory to God, hence, not just a hermit sitting in a cave. I believe the goal was to be more like Christ.

How far down this road a person must go to be considered a Christian Mystic would be hard to define. I’m sure in most of our lives it is a growing process. Most of us do not leave everything behind, become a monk and run for that mark, but if we are a C.M. in our heart, we can still get there, even with all the responsibilities of family and work. We can still fall so in love with our Lord, that everything we do, even washing the dishes becomes an act of worship to God. There is so much to say here, but I must control myself, so here are some quick facts on Origen, and if you want to know more, it can be found.

He was born to Christian parents in Alexandria, Egypt. His father was beheaded during the persecution under Roman Emperor Lucius Severus (193-211), when Origen was about twelve. The beginnings of Christian Mysticism began second century, in North Africa, of which Alexandria was a city of, and part of the thriving culture of Rome. An important Catechetical  school was developed there, and Origen became a student of Clement of Alexandria. It should be noted this teacher was also influenced by Greek philosophy; Platonist in orientation. What effect that had on scripture, I’m not sure, but Origen eventually became the head of the school.

Origen became a great teacher, wrote a lot of stuff, and was sometimes described as a “Master Mystic”. He learned Hebrew and became a translator of Hebrew scripture, such as Song of Songs. He also traveled about preaching and teaching. He had a great influence on church doctrine in his day. About 250 A.D., he was imprisoned and tortured. He survived and was released in 251, but was so weakened physically that he died shortly thereafter, in 254. There is much more to his story and material he wrote to be read if you so desire to research.

I don’t know how many Christian Mystics we will look at, or which ones, but Origen has been our first, and don’t forget his teaching concerning that third level: The deep yearning of the soul to be made one with the divine Word. May we all aspire to such things.


Until the next time…



“White Thoughts”

20180130_162748 Taking a break from our Christian Mystic journey. I feel led to share some words I wrote on a wood plaque I created in my wood shop. These words pertain to my vision of “Path of the White Feather”. The flip side also has words and contains a pure white feather. But today I share the black feather turning white, and leave the white feather for another time. Hope you enjoy.

“The White Feather”

I’m drinking black coffee while I dream of white things, my Bible open in my lap. “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.” What did Jesus mean?

A journey towards white, a journey towards light, a journey towards perfection. Your sins shall be whiter than snow? I drink black coffee and ponder white promises like a weather man predicting a winter storm…all shall be white?

Most of us see ourself as the feather above, on our way to the white feather one day. A promise of light made possible only in Christ. May we praise him forever!

The high places of a pure heart where the eagle soars and one walks with God? I drink my coffee and ponder these things, in the rising sun of day.

In Christ alone I stand…all other ground is sinking sand. “But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the ‘perfect’ day.” Wow…what a thought.

Signed: Grandpa White Feather.

This hangs in the Teepee. Perhaps this too is a little mystic?

I was there yesterday and God’s Presence was strong as I spent time with the crackling fire.



“Why Christian Mystic?” Part VI

20171117_161659 It’s Sunday morning as I begin this article. This is a time when many people set aside a portion of their life to “go to church”, and “focus on God”. But I sit at home this morning pondering what I did last night. I went to a Catholic Mass.

I’ve only been to two in my life. The first time was many years ago, and as I went this time, it was for the purpose of seeking more, if it could be found. Did they have it? Was it there? My memory of so many years ago did not provide me the answer. I would look again.

This particular Parish was a more modern design, but it still had stained glass windows, a fountain of flowing water in the sanctuary, a Priest wearing special robe, pipe organ, sacred songs sung in a sacred way, people knelt facing the cross before they entered a pew, or read the readings, people made the sign of the Trinity across their chest, the Priest gave his sermon, the Lord’s Supper was shared with great humility and respect, and then we left.

Many many things were done to set a certain spiritual atmosphere, a Table Setting pleasing to God. But did I feel a strong presence of God in all that ceremony? Unfortunately, at this particular Parish, I did not. But I must say, the Priest had an excellent message, and I intend to search other churches.

My close friend who is devout Catholic took me to this church and sat amazed at what the Priest shared in his message, because it was mostly about what my friend knew I was trying to do, while this Priest was pointing out they were “not” doing it. He said, “We don’t go out. The doors are always open. You can come in any time. But we don’t go out. And we’re failing to reach this community. We have many empty seats. Is this how we want it? We’re not doing a good job of showing the love of God and the urgency of our Gospel message outside these four walls.”

Wow…it really was a great message. My friend looked at me like what did you do to this Priest before we came here? But why did I not feel a strong presence of God like I was hungry to feel? What is the spiritual blockage? Why is Christianity drying up in America? How have we become this Post-Christian nation, as we are now labeled? A lack of passion? Worldly distraction in our people? More and more sin? A failure to make God our habitation?

Hhmmm, how do you make God your habitation, like Psalms 91:9 speaks of? How do we dwell in the secret place, like verse one speaks of? The Christian Mystic knows.

Are we too busy with worldly habits to maintain any kind of Holy Habits? To habitate with our Lord? Ohhh, this may be getting a little spooky? A little deep? A little supernatural? But this is what the CM knows, and perhaps this is what we are missing today? We have left our first love, and we don’t know how to get back there?

The CM knows only the power of God, not our own, will get us there. God at work in us. But we have to seek it. We have to want it. You have not because you ask not, and when you do ask, you ask amissssss, (hear the snake? hear the monster?), to consume it upon our own lust! Self love! Self gratification! Worldly desires and pleasures of the flesh! Pride, ego, and materialism! Are we guilty? Of course we are. But do we really seek God to change us? Do we seek a proper “Table Setting” between us and God, a life of holy habits?

We consider our spiritual equation of Romans 12:1 + Philippians 2:13 + Acts 17:28 = Christian Mystic. This is our reasonable service? True worship unto God? We need help!!! We need mystic habits that draw on God / Jesus like a branch draws on a vine. If we care enough to truly seek God according to the “Table” he offers, we will find Him, and he will supernaturally work in us until we are transformed. We are so spiritually bankrupt through the sin nature (Beatitude #1), that everything we need must be sought through the grace of God. We have no glory in this. The Christian Mystic knows this. Once again, it seems to come back to a picture of Mary and Martha. I’m sure you understand which one of them would have been classified as mystic.

Too much sin in the people of God is a real problem and blockage today. But again, seeking God is the beginning of effecting a supernatural change, that transforms us from our stinking thinking, (the self-loving monster), to the supernatural “MIND OF CHRIST”. We cannot speak enough about establishing basic holy habits, that become our habitat, leading to this supernaturally transformed life.

Does this also require any will power on your part? Initially yes. And I believe it starts with the “initiallity” of every day. If we ignore God’s manna in whatever form it comes, be it prayer, word, praise, etc; then we “set the Table” for the monster to show up. We are not even concerned enough to seek God first.

God always points out the monster at the table. Jesus pointed Judas out that day. The Lord’s Supper was not comfortable for Judas for very long, it was becoming more and more uncomfortable, and he was anxious to get out of there! Jesus went on to deal with all the monsters as he embraced the cross and poured out his blood for us. If we understand the Lord’s Table, we have access to the power to deal with all our monsters. But do we have the holy habit of drawing on that Vine? For that we must sit at our Lord’s Table daily, and all day, L7D. I’m not talking a literal physical Lord’s Supper here, but in our heart, soul, mind, and strength.

The Lord’s Table was not ceremony, stained glass windows, and holy robes that night. But it was very personal. It was self-sacrificing, not self-loving. It was a Table in a large room like being with family. It was relationship, not religion. But at the same time it was full of very deep teaching and meaning that goes right over our heads most of the time. This is one reason as to “Why Christian Mystics”. To wake us out of our slumber, challenge us to really care, to let God “fill us completely”, take over, become one, a life of love that is supernatural in nature, not just merely human, but a city whose builder and maker is God!

The Mass I experienced last night fell short for me. I have learned in my own studies that the word “liturgy” literally means: “work of the people”. And… church actually starts the moment you begin to ready yourself to go join your brothers and sisters at the Lord’s Table. The liturgy is a journey that proceeds from the kingdom of this world into a brief encounter with the kingdom of God, and then back out again to bear witness to it. The liturgy began the moment you started separating yourself from this world so you could join the rest of the body of Christ at His Table. As we should know, in the liturgy, every act is a metaphor or symbol. At the end of it, we can’t help but be moved to cry out with all the angels, “Thanks be to God!” And give our lives to the God who gave his life for us. (Much of this information came from the book: “Chasing Francis: A Pilgrim’s Tale” by Ian Morgan Cron.)

I want to do a Lord’s Supper here at “Church of the White Path” soon; and I want it to be very personal and special. So far I feel my exploration of Christian Mystics has had very positive affects on me, and so will continue exploring this path further. Again, I hope you’re enjoying too. I hope you feel spiritually challenged…and inspired to higher heights and deeper places in our Lord than we have known.


“The Christian Mystic” Part III

20171202_173614 So I rented and watched the last episode of Harry Potter last night. I’m one of those who basically watched the first movie, thought it was pretty silly, and then only saw pieces of others until the final episode, which I saw some time ago. So I needed a refresher, and I can see J.K. Rowlings was not kidding when she said, “My books are largely about death.” She also said it is the goal of every person with magic to seek immortality, and that we’re all frightened of death.

That last episode definitely was not a comedy, but dead serious about many things, especially death. She gave several views of death from different vantage points. Of course there is the totally evil Voldemort who wants to avoid death no matter what it takes. No matter what it cost others, he must be the one who lives.

Harry Potter, on the other hand, almost becomes Jesus Christ! Except for being nailed to a cross and suffering a slow death, he did. Our wizard hero realizes he must die in order for others to live. He comes to believe this is the only way to defeat Voldemort, and has to make this terrible decision of laying down your own life for the sake of others. This wizard who has fought so hard all this time, suddenly decides not to even put up a fight, but presents himself as a lamb for the sacrifice! Apparently, he even goes into death, or a coma, or something. But he has the choice of either going on into death, or coming back to life. (Sort of like a resurrection, but it didn’t take 3 days. Maybe 3 hours.)

In the process of all this, Rowlings presents some pretty heavy hitting contemplations on death. Many others die during this time too, and naturally, it bothers Potter that they died trying to keep him alive. He also has a rather deep conversation with the old schoolmaster while in that other dimension.

The point was also made that no one is really gone as long as they still live in your heart. They might even still be with you in their spirit form.

These are a few of the perspectives given in this very serious show where characters also fly through the air on broomsticks and have a wand battle that reminded me of a weird version of Star Wars. It is obvious Rowlings does not have anything new to add to our speculations about death. Hence, the fear of what might be on that other side. What if there is nothing? We don’t like that perspective and usually offer something different in our movies, which she did also. We tell our children “Grandpa is in a better place now.” We want to believe there is a heaven, but what if there does turn out to be a hell?

The Christian Mystic (CM) knows that immortality is not on this side of the River Jordan, but the other. If a magical person wants immortality then they must be willing to die. (Not that we really have a choice.) But how shall our immortality be spent? Who wants to live in an eternity of judgement? Not I.

The CM looks around at creation and sees a Creator. He examines the word of God and sees wisdom and prophecies beyond what is humanly possible. He studies the history of the nation Israel, who claim they had an encounter with God, and sees more evidence of something supernatural, because these people have such an unnatural track record on this planet, and continue so. He considers what would cause 12 Apostles to totally change their lives and be faithful unto death for that message, if they had not walked with something so convincing they could not deny. The CM looks at all these things and more, and then decides the evidence of the Bible is overwhelming, and wants to know more!

However, the Christian Mystic also looks within. He studies what his heart and conscience is telling him. He does not just feel the wind, but he hears the voice in the wind, and he knows. His faith leaps in acceptance of overwhelming evidence of a spirit world and a God who created all. He looks within and sees the monster, the evil in his own heart that would even murder your own Creator, and then he knows God’s mercy is his only hope. He enters that mercy like the prodigal son returning home, and he sets himself apart from the older brother who became consumed with hate and judgement. The Bible he has come to believe says to repent and call on Jesus, and so he does. He says, You are right God, and I’m so wrong. Please save me through your Son, Jesus. And he means every word he has said.

J.K. Rowlings has created a world in which the bad guy looks like a snake, has a pet snake, and talks snake language. It seems obvious where the source of his power must come from. But who or what is the source of power of all those fighting the bad guys? What makes these spells and incantations work so powerfully? So without any real explanation we glamorize sorcery to be something it is not, and label it as “fiction”. Well, at least that much is true. The way sorcery is presented in Harry Potter is pure fiction.

A Christian Mystic is a servant of God. As such, God works through him to affect this world in supernatural ways. He makes no claim to be anything himself. The power is not his, nor does he decide how it should be used. God does. In Potter’s world, these incantations somehow pull power out of the air, or from the good person, or from nature itself, or who knows what as I don’t know if it is ever really explained in any of the episodes. Please enlighten me if anyone out there knows. But we will look at Doctor Strange next. This is a new and upcoming Marvel superhero of the supernatural. He’s fun to watch, but what is the sermon he preaches about the other side? We shall see.

Harry Potter leaves us with plenty of questions and no real answers. Only the same speculations unbelieving man has offered for many centuries. Jesus came claiming he had seen the place we all are asking about, and he offered first hand answers. But only we can decide if Jesus was a madman? Or exactly what he claimed to be? The real thing. Christian Mystics all over the world seek his face and testify of a transformed life. They also speak of a three-fold path. Soon we will look at these things.

“The Christian Mystic” Part II

indian lady (5) “At this point many of his disciples turned away and deserted him. Then Jesus turned to the Twelve and asked, ‘Are you also going to leave?’ Simon Peter replied, ‘Lord, to whom would we go? You have the words that give eternal life.’ ” (John 7:66-68 NLT)

The Christian Mystic. Devoted to the words of life, and challenged of God to be witnesses of that life in a world cursed with death. According to wikipedia, here is a quote from J.K. Rowling, author of Harry Potter. >

“My books are largely about death. They open with the death of Harry’s parents. There is Voldemort’s obsession with conquering death and his quest for immortality at any price, the goal of anyone with magic. I so understand why Voldemort wants to conquer death. We’re all frightened of it.”

I think that was a very honest statement on her part. Based on the world she chose to create in her books, I assume she doesn’t believe the Bible version of the hereafter. Most people, whether they will admit it or not, are probably frightened about death. The question of what is really on the other side, if anything at all? If not for my faith in God’s word, I’d be the same. Probably any sane person would be.

For the Christian Mystic, the Bible has our answers. If our faith is strong, this brings us peace. But Rowlings is a Mystic of another sort. She would probably classify herself as “spiritual”, but just exactly what does that mean? Perhaps it means to suspect there is something on the other side, but not sure of what it is, so it is also feared. If Christian Mystics prove to be right, then Rowlings has made multi millions off of glamorizing what it means to be a magician in Pharaoh’s court battling against the people of God. When the books are opened to give an account of our deeds on earth, she may have a lot to explain.

But Mr. Potter contends against a really evil dude! She has made Harry a symbol of something good! As I said, she has glamorized what God’s word reveals to be evil. Power based on seeking witchcraft, hexes, satanistic rituals, spells, incantations, and so forth. Perhaps she believes it all to be pure fiction, but according to the Bible, it is not. Therefore, if Christian Mystics prove to be right in their faith, people like J.K. Rowlings will have a lot to explain. They believe they are having their good time now, but the Christian Mystic understands this world is cursed, and this is not the time to be having our good time. The flesh is a life built on sand.

Our Lord explains about the true riches of joy, peace, love, helping others, and serving the Father. He has the words of life. A life built on spirit is the only true blessing. There is really nothing in this world we can possess except God. Unless you can keep it forever, you don’t really possess it. Your fancy car, your mansion house, even your very life you will release one day, all of it, gone like dust in the wind. You possess nothing, unless you possess God. This is Christian Mysticism.

I intend to use Harry Potter as my main dark side antagonist to the Christian Mystic simply because of it’s extreme success, setting some major new records in our current culture around the world. If we picture our world as Pharaoh’s court, Harry Potter is definitely Pharaoh’s magician, not God’s Moses. Here’s some stats.

The first novel: “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone”, came out on June 26, 1997 and the series has been received with immense popularity and commercial success. The books have a wide adult audience as well as non-adult. So Harry Potter has been with us for two decades already, and a child of eight then, would be twenty-eight now. The Harry Potter generation is coming up to bat!

Wikipedia stats say as of May 2013 the books had sold more than 500 million world wide and is the best selling “book series” in history. Four of the books consecutively set records as the fastest selling books in history. In the U.S. alone, the final installment sold eleven million copies in 24 hours! In 2016 the total value of the Harry Potter franchise was estimated at 25 billion! So if you’re looking for a character to represent a “good wizard”, Harry Potter is the one everyone knows.

But why should this be important to us? Because the Christian, whether mystic or not, should realize we do live in a matrix. I wonder how many wannabe Harry Potters we have coming into power ready to contend with the people of God on every level? To them, the God of the Bible is a monster, a belief system we just spent five episodes proving the opposite of, and thus the Christian Mystic (CM), the devout follower of Christ, finds himself at odds with this world’s version of being “spiritual”. Jesus himself said in this world we would have tribulation. The Bible calls Satan the prince of the power of the air. Be forewarned, in the arena of ideas, beliefs, and faith in this world, we have a real battle on our hands.

But is it all just harmless fun? Perhaps it could be if it were not for the matrix we live in. God’s word says the tongue, (words and beliefs), set on fire the course of nature. It changes and sets on fire the very direction of nature! The CM understands the spiritual and physical effect we all have on this planet. In the end God’s snake eats the others and the child of God ends up in the promised land, but the painful path of getting there is full of tribulation. But don’t bother a J.K. Rowlings with little details like that, she’s busy getting hers now, and she doesn’t believe you anyway. You are the fool for believing such things. (Yet she fears what is on the other side.)

These articles will eventually speak more of what it really means to be a Christian Mystic. They strongly believed in and sought a life “transformation” by the power of God. It’s all really cool stuff. But first, I think it’s important to realize just how much our world is falling in love with a version of Pharaoh’s magicians. Do not be fooled. The Disciples said it: Where else would we go, Lord, for you have the only words of life. We may not understand everything the Bible says, but as a follower of Christ we know the answers are there, and as a Mystic we delight in diligently searching them out. These are true riches we can actually possess! We should not settle to be average in our Christianity. We should seek God, and the understanding of His mysteries with all of our heart, because we delight in Him. This is the truly transformed heart. This is the Christian Mystic, a seeker of things above, more than here on earth.



“The Christian Mystic”

indian lady (3) Is there such a thing as a Christian mystic? One dictionary definition gave me: “Mysticism” > the belief that direct knowledge of God or ultimate reality is attainable through immediate intuition or insight.

Upon more research I found it is a rather precise definition with a very broad application. It has been applied to any and all seekers of spirit, spiritual knowledge, supernatural, voice of God, religions, and etc.

A mystic is drawn to explore the spirit side of life in an effort to understand, apply, find answers, and solve spiritual mysteries. With the broad application of this word, “Mystic”, I believe we do have Christian mystics, and because of such broad application it is necessary to specify exactly what kind of mystic you are, if you are one.

Mystic could include any of the following terms: wizard, sorcerer, warlock, witch, Satanist, magician, and etc. But these would all be people drawing their power from Satan, and not God. For instance, when Moses was facing the magicians of the Pharaoh of Egypt. Moses threw down his staff and it became a snake. The magicians threw down their staffs and they became snakes also! (But not by the power of God.) They had another source, a dark source, and Moses’s snake ate the others.

I’m feeling led to go down this path because mystics, wizards, sorcerers, warlocks, the supernatural, are all very popular with Hollywood and this generation. We are seeing more and more of this stuff. I think it is a sign of our time, and the “seeds” of where we are going in our future harvest.

A mystic has a true hunger for spiritual things and a deeper knowledge. In that sense, I wish all Christians were mystics. Instead of being so caught up in the things of this world, and how to have success in the things of this world, a true mystic is more interested in the mysteries of God. I probably fall in the category of a Christian mystic. I’ve been this way most my life. I am fascinated with how to walk by faith and not by sight. A strong prayer life is one part of the answer. Mystics delve into prayer, and even fasting. They explore spiritual avenues.

So here we are in the day of Harry Potter and Doctor Strange. We also have good witches and white sorcery. (There is no such thing as white sorcery. It’s all dark, truth be told. The source of the power determines which side of the great divide it derives from.)

And how would the Matrix fit into all this? New Age mumbo gumbo. But truth is, we live in a matrix, just waiting to respond to faith. And it does. It happens all the time. The matrix is responding to the seeds we are sowing even now…whether seeds of witchcraft and sorcery, or seeds of God.

This is why all this is so dangerous, you know. It has been said that the pen is mightier than the sword, and that’s so true, because with a pen, “words” are written. Words put forth ideas people come to believe in. All of creation was spoken into existence from words and faith. We play with the very fabric of this universe as large platforms spew forth lies, hate, and manipulation.

So were going to look at this concept of the Christian mystic. Are they really drawn to a lot of flashy stage lights and shish boom bah? Not normally. Where are our mystics today? And what do they see coming? I would say John the Baptist was one type of mystic. Prophets are mystics.

When the Harry Potters of our future rise up to throw down their staffs and they become snakes; are we ready? This is our new subject for an episode or two. Let me know if you have an opinion in this. Do you like the idea of being a mystic? Does that appeal to you? If you’re too caught up in material things, you’re not likely to be a successful mystic.

So lets talk about Harry Potter, Doctor Strange, and any others who represent that ilk today. Is it all harmless fun? What do you think? We shall see.

“Is God the Monster?” Part V

20171202_192016 “Even Gentiles, who do not have God’s written law, show that they know his law when they instinctively obey it, even without having heard it. They demonstrate that God’s law is written in their hearts, for there own conscience and thoughts either accuse them or tell them they are doing right. And this is the message I proclaim — that the day is coming when God, through Christ Jesus, will judge everyone’s secret life.” Romans 2:14-16

In the episodes leading up to this point, we have emphasized how it is not God who is the monster, but it is us. In the last episode we even showed a great deal of evidence that God has mercy for those who have never had a proper introduction to Christ, and prayed for such people when he prayed “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” The above scripture (Rom. 2:14-16), is another scripture referencing such a people. We called these people the “Golden Rule People”, and presented evidence that they may inherit the earth, the New Earth! While the Bride of the Lamb enjoys the fullness of God’s Kingdom in New City Jerusalem. Such wonderful possibilities. All indicating God is not the monster some like to believe and teach.

Until now, all this has been the easy part. After much study I cannot deny there is a “Cup of Wrath” slowly filling for all those who are truly monsters. However, what I find so very interesting, is what fills the cup! What is the cup filled with that eventually pours out on the “filler”? Because I think it may not be what most of us envision. Who qualifies as a monster in the eyes of God? The monsters are actually filling their own cup! As we have said, our sin nature is self-destructive. But again, what does God consider to be so evil, that he allows it to fill the cup? What kind of darkness is filling the cup?

This Episode #5 also begins our attempt to understand God as revealed in the Old Testament. I do not consider this a small thing. Our journey will begin in the New Testament, but will eventually also enter the old. I might add on a personal note, I am still between jobs, waiting for the background check to clear, which seems to be moving extra slow for some odd reason; and I am still fighting a virus in my lungs that does not want to go away. All of this has contributed to my being locked away in my cave to ponder and write these things. You be the judge if you think God’s hand is in this, but I am looking forward to being healthy again. Soon! (I hope.)

In Isaiah 60:2a, the Bible reveals “darkness”, and also something called “gross darkness”. “For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people:…”

I think we have proven hell is a place God has reserved for “monsters”, but what does God consider to be a monster? Certainly not the innocent. I believe Jesus revealed to us over and over again what God considers to be monstrous, and it is not only darkness, but a gross darkness so evil our minds can barely comprehend! Satan is very good at hiding his true image. No one in their “right mind” would ever want to be associated with a darkness so sick, unless they too are a monster.

God’s word even speaks of a “reprobate mind”, which these people are given over to because they do not want to recognize God is God. What is reprobate? Gross darkness! A darkness that would murder their own Creator in full knowledge of what they are doing. Such as what we might see rise up after the 1000 year reign of Christ. This army of attackers still want to murder God even after 1000 years of peace and beauty! Again we ask, what kind of monster are such people? And may we all pray we never do such a thing ourself, because that seed is in every one of us. Lord have mercy on each of us, and keep us in your grace.

This actually is our first snapshot of Jesus revealing what God considers so evil, that it is monstrous, and if taken far enough, becomes unredeemable. Did you ever notice how Jesus was very merciful to the poor and humble, but very hard to the Pharisees? How is it he could eat with sinners but always ended up in trouble in the Temples?

“Two men went to the temple to pray. One was a Pharisee, and the other was a despised tax collector.” (Anybody remember how Jesus treated Zachaeus?)

This parable is contained in  Luke 18, and Jesus spoke it to the Pharisees! About how the Pharisee prayed a prayer of self pride, but the tax collector recognized his own spiritual poverty (Beatitude #1), and cried out to God for mercy. Then Jesus said this: “I tell you this sinner, not the Pharisee, returned home justified before God. For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.” (Verse 14).

Immediately after this parable, probably on a different day, but Luke presents it at this time, Jesus speaks of children: “I tell you the truth, everyone who doesn’t receive the Kingdom of God like a child will never enter it.”

In an earlier episode we considered the wisdom of a little child and how they have a natural fear of monsters lurking in the dark, and therefore, also have a natural love for light! But as we outgrow our childhood, we have the potential to love gross darkness and hate the light! This is such an evil, and we could name different sins like pornography, adultery, hate, murder, stealing, lying, selfishness; but when you boil it all down, the plain evidence Jesus revealed about the Father over and over again, is that God is going to put down the PROUD and ARROGANT, and lift up the poor and humble. It appears this is what is filling the cup, filled by the sinner themself, and then poured out on himself, only multiplied, because a harvest is always multiplied. We reap the harvest we have sown with our own hands. Spiritual law 101, except for grace!

Back in Revelation again, we find this same analogy. The harlot has filled her cup! But with what?

“And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet color, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication:” (Rev. 17:4) (Full of what? Gross darkness!)

“And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus:” (Rev. 17:6a)

“And then I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities. Reward her even as she rewarded you, and double unto her double according to her works: in the cup which she hath filled fill to her double.” (Rev. 18: 4-6) (The cup which she has filled!)

From there the scriptures go on to describe what incredible pleasures and luxuries she had indulged herself in. Such pride and arrogance. So what is the measure of a monster? How much does the cup of wrath hold before it spills over? Because this is where it connects to the Old Testament, when God told Abraham he could not have the promised land yet, for at least another several hundred years! “Because the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full.” (Gen. 15:16)

Had the Amorites never filled that cup, it would not have poured out on them. But notice what our God judges so severely: Pride, arrogance, exalting yourself at the expense of others, rather than sacrificing yourself for the love of others. The Golden Rule. This is the sin God so hates. This is the sin Satan is so full of, even from his very beginning steps into a world of gross darkness. This is the monster. It is a form of self love over God and anyone else. Yes people, we really can love ourself too much. Think abut it.

So if we would judge God, we would have to say he is the lover and defender of all those who really care about others, even when it cost them a personal price. And he is the judge and enemy of all those who exalt themselves at the expense of others. We see it over and over again in scripture, even in the Old Testament.

In Revelation, when the martyrs are under the altar crying out to God, how long will you wait before you avenge our blood? These people were slain because they followed a lamb! What kind of evil is this?! But the cup of the dragon was not yet quite full. The day came when it was, and their own evil cup began pouring out on them, whereas the saints drank of the good wine, from the cup filled by their Lord as they followed the Lamb in his service.

Here’s an ending thought. The Pharisees asked Jesus: “Then why did Moses say in the law that a man could give his wife a written notice of divorce and send her away?” Jesus replied, “Moses permitted divorce only as a concession to your hard hearts, but it was not what God had originally intended.” (Matt. 19:7-8)

I wonder how much of what we see in the Old Testament is actually because of OUR HARD HEARTS, not God’s? Did God really want a time span, or learning curve, of “AN EYE FOR AN EYE”? Or was it us? Jesus ate at the tables of sinners, and got in trouble at every temple. Judge not, lest ye be judged. Would you dare to judge God? We might be surprised to find out how much of our accusations against God is really because of a huge, I mean gigantic, beam in our own eye! Not to mention the condition of our heart. Do you think it might be possible, as the monsters we are, and the self-destructive nature we have, that it might actually be impossible for us to accurately judge the God of love? Are we really in any position to judge what pure love is? Or the rights of the one who created us?

I suspect if we take the Beatitudes and look at their exact opposites we will find what all the cups of wrath are being filled with. After all this, what I see is, God is the friend of the humble, and the enemy of the proud. But evil is really its own worse enemy, and everything that seems to poor out on them really comes from their own gross darkness. In heaven, there will finally be no monsters to be feared. God will be there. He will fill the place. But he is not the monster. And by his great love and grace, no longer are we.