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Close but no cigar.
Sep 15, 2020 11:30:25   #
Armageddun Loc: The show me state
 
CLOSE, but NOT QUITE
"You are not far from the kingdom of God." Mark 12:34
"Christ came to save all through His own person."
---Irenaeus....

The teacher of the law, having come to probe Jesus' theology, is probed himself. He commends Jesus' insight into true devotion, and thinks the matter is settled with his endorsement. Jesus steps over the endorsement with authority and commends the teacher's belief that the love of God and neighbor are the substance of God's heart more than burnt offerings.

We are satisfied with the teacher's position, too, and are glad that, at least for once, a legal expert got it right. But Jesus stops short of declaring him right with God. He's got the right idea, but he isn't there yet. To be "not far from the kingdom of God" is still to be outside of it. Something more is needed.

This should alarm us. Don't we know many who profess love of God and neighbor and consider it salvation? Don't many of us describe that as the essence of our faith as well? Why isn't this enough for Jesus? What's the problem?

We need to learn two lessons from the teacher of the law. (1) Knowing doctrine is not the same as knowing God. Plenty of people know the right words and agree with the right things. That's not enough. We cannot enter the kingdom of heaven unless we're born of God's Spirit. We cannot get there without knowing Him.

(2) Knowing God is not possible without knowing Him through Jesus. The exact representation of God on earth, the body in whom God met a sinful race, cannot be bypassed without rejecting the One who sent Him. Though many try to identify other ways, it just isn't possible.

Jesus' semi-compliment to the teacher is a slap in the face of our culture. Modern religionists have so watered down God that He is alleged to be known on their own terms. Jesus would tell all who believe in a generic god and do good works in His name: "You aren't far from the kingdom. But you are not yet there."

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Sep 18, 2020 16:57:36   #
Zemirah Loc: Sojourner En Route...
 
Up a Creek Without a Paddle...

to paraphrase the utter truth of Armageddun's Biblical wisdom, is the predicament of failing to establish a personal one on one relationship with God through He whom He sent.

God wants us to know Him. Christianity is not just knowing about God or knowing certain doctrines that men have formulated around the truth of His Word.

Nor does it consist only of following certain moral precepts which God wove into our conscience while we were in our mother's womb. It is primarily to know God Himself, up close and personal, He who originally created us to "walk in the garden with Him."

Jesus said in John 17:3,

“This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.”

Christianity at its heart, at its very core, is, knowing God personally through Jesus Christ, who revealed God to us, by taking on human form, becoming fully human, while remaining fully God. Anyone who does not know Him, is not a Christian, no matter how correctly their doctrine has been memorized, or how faithful their church attendance and participation, or how regularly their choir singing is practiced.

Even if we have been raised in the church and have always adhered to Christian morality, God's Word admonishes us, if anyone does not know and communicate with God personally, that person is outside the fold.

The apostle Paul was a rabbinical student deeply steeped in Judaism. He knew the Hebrew Scriptures by heart. He fastidiously observed the Jewish rituals and feasts....

But he wrote (Philippians 3:8),

“I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ.”

Paul knew a lot about God, but he had never known God personally until he believed and professed His faith in Jesus Christ. To know God personally through Christ! ... That is the only acceptable beginning.

2. God wants us to know positively in our own heart and mind that we know Him, as John wrote in (2:3), “By this we know that we have come to know Him….”

There is a difference between mouthing the words and, in your heart, knowing them to be true. It's tragically easy to misspeak, as John informs (2:4) anyone whose motive is to please family or to acquire status for personal gain within his own neighborhood, and foolishly makes the claim that “I have come to know Him,” for John bluntly says that this person “is a liar, and the truth is not in him.”


"For as the earth brings forth its bud, as the garden causes the things that are sown in it to spring forth, so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the nations. (Isaiah 61:11)




Armageddun wrote:
CLOSE, but NOT QUITE
"You are not far from the kingdom of God." Mark 12:34
"Christ came to save all through His own person."
---Irenaeus....

The teacher of the law, having come to probe Jesus' theology, is probed himself. He commends Jesus' insight into true devotion, and thinks the matter is settled with his endorsement. Jesus steps over the endorsement with authority and commends the teacher's belief that the love of God and neighbor are the substance of God's heart more than burnt offerings.

We are satisfied with the teacher's position, too, and are glad that, at least for once, a legal expert got it right. But Jesus stops short of declaring him right with God. He's got the right idea, but he isn't there yet. To be "not far from the kingdom of God" is still to be outside of it. Something more is needed.

This should alarm us. Don't we know many who profess love of God and neighbor and consider it salvation? Don't many of us describe that as the essence of our faith as well? Why isn't this enough for Jesus? What's the problem?

We need to learn two lessons from the teacher of the law. (1) Knowing doctrine is not the same as knowing God. Plenty of people know the right words and agree with the right things. That's not enough. We cannot enter the kingdom of heaven unless we're born of God's Spirit. We cannot get there without knowing Him.

(2) Knowing God is not possible without knowing Him through Jesus. The exact representation of God on earth, the body in whom God met a sinful race, cannot be bypassed without rejecting the One who sent Him. Though many try to identify other ways, it just isn't possible.

Jesus' semi-compliment to the teacher is a slap in the face of our culture. Modern religionists have so watered down God that He is alleged to be known on their own terms. Jesus would tell all who believe in a generic god and do good works in His name: "You aren't far from the kingdom. But you are not yet there."
CLOSE, but NOT QUITE br "You are not far from... (show quote)



Adam, Where art thou?
Adam, Where art thou?...

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