Spence's Thread...Continued

Discussion in 'Your Religion & Spiritual Center' started by Henrysullivan, Nov 12, 2010.

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  1. Henrysullivan

    Henrysullivan New Member

    You may go days
    without thinking of God
    but there is never a moment
    when He is not
    thinking of you
  2. Henrysullivan

    Henrysullivan New Member

    Set your heart on Heaven
    and you get earth
    thrown in
    Set your heart on earth
    and you get neither
  3. Henrysullivan

    Henrysullivan New Member

    If Jesus is a crutch
    give me two
  4. Henrysullivan

    Henrysullivan New Member

    To refuse to forgive
    is to
    burn the bridge
    over which one must pass

    Now that really says something
  5. CarolineJ.

    CarolineJ. New Member

    Like that one...
  6. Henrysullivan

    Henrysullivan New Member


    On the cross of
    the Lord Jesus broke up
    the log jam between
    justice and forgiveness

    That is particularly insightful, I believe. We all deserve justice, perfect justice. But what is perfect justice?

    In thinking about this, in the final analysis, it occurs that all that is given to any of us is life and a certain degree of opportunity to do something with it. And of course, due to circumstances beyond our control, we are all born into different stations of life, arguing the case for varying degrees of opportunity. Be that as it may, perfect justice must and can only be with respect to this life and those opportunities, that are given to us.

    We are born into a framework, one in which we understand right from wrong, good from evil. The laws that govern right from wrong, good and evil, are written on our hearts. Those laws are sort of encoded in our operating systems. And we go forth into the world. And we do some good, but we also do some evil. The good is expected as an obligation in exchange for life and opportunity in the first place. Yet, knowing the difference, on occasion we transgress and do evil anyway .

    Understanding that all we are really given is life and opportunity, the perfect justice of doing evil is simply a withdrawal of the same, a withdrawal of the precious life and opportunity God has given us. That is perfect justice.

    God is perfectly just and a perfect God could dispense no less than perfect justice. But because we are not perfect, our imperfect minds might even rationalize that God ought to give us some slack on our imperfections. After all, He made us how we are. So our nature is His fault, not ours. So in taking that position, we become absolved of all personal responsibility for our actions. But that is not the case. We are all responsible for our actions. That is because God gave us free will to decide on our own, whether we obey the laws written on our hearts. So we cannot blame God on our shortcomings. We own the free will. Therefore we own the responsibility for exercising of the same. No, it is not God Who errs. It is indeed us.

    And because a perfect God can only dispense justice perfectly, the result of that perfect justice being the withdrawal of that which is given, that gift being life itself and all that life represents; and because God's will is what solely defines what it right and wrong, good and evil; and because man's will does not always coincide with God's will, man can never live the perfect life in keeping with God's will. That is the nature of free will in a natural world of scarce resources. But also because a perfect God also possesses perfect compassion, perfect love for that which He creates, God's will is also that man continues with life and opportunity, while requiring that perfect justice be served.

    So for any of us, placed into the position of God, these aspects of God's will, the requirement to dispense perfect judgment, and the perfect love and compassion for His creation, would be irreconcilable. Somehow, this perfect God had to reconcile the requirement that perfect justice be administered, but perfect compassion offset that judgment at the same time, to in the end achieve His overall goal that all men receive life and live with Him forever. These seemingly mutually exclusive, irreconcilable conditions present the need for a Savior. Somehow these differences had to be resolve, neither excluding the other from the final product, that product being that justice is served yet man still lives, holding on to life and opportunity, that which is God's perfect gift.

    Knowing that man cannot reconcile these two mutually exclusive requirements, God had no choice but to resolve them Himself, coming to life in the form of Jesus Christ, a man Who was born and lived under the most meager natural surroundings and circumstances. That Jesus was born into meager circumstances was vital to God's plan. Because Jesus was born into these circumstances, no man, no matter the circumstances of his own birth and upbringing, can blame his actions on circumstances out of his control. No man can blame his lack of adherence to God's standards on his own poverty. And furthermore, no man born into luxury or any degree thereof has any excuse for actions that the laws written on his heart might convict. To whom much is given, much is required.

    So Jesus paid the price of justice for all men. Jesus drank the entire cup, taking full responsibility for every transgression of God's laws by mankind. And because what lives after the life in the natural is spirit, Jesus promises to give His Spirit, containing the Spirit of God, which Spirit cannot die, to anyone who simply believes that He did what He did, taking responsibility for our inadequacies. Jesus forgives those inadequacies for anyone who believes that they are forgiven. And forgiveness happens immediately upon repentance, a willingness to turn away from our moral failures, knowing true remorse, and accepting God's forgiveness. That explains what God's grace is. We can either live under the laws written on our hearts, or we can live under grace, again, choices exercised with the gift of free will. And that gift from God, above all others, is what all of the gifts we give and receive on Christmas represent. Because we give these gifts to those whom we transgress and who transgress us all year, these gifts are tokens and reminders of God's love, God's forgiveness and God's grace to us all. When we give to others, we pay God back for the gift of life. Because a gift to others is a sacrifice, such a gift, regardless of its form, is a gift of life. Jesus' sacrifice was a gift of life to mankind. So when we sacrifice and give to others, we give back to God at the same time. On the cross of Calvary the Lord Jesus broke up the log jam between justice and forgiveness.

    It strikes me that it took me now 9 paragraphs to explain, however inadequately, what Spence expressed in only 17 words.
  7. hollymm

    hollymm Me, 'in' a tree.

    I read you a few times Hank and am still a little foggy...
    God, in his perfection could not give justice and forgiveness because man had already messed up.
    Jesus came to show man how to be perfect so that justice and forgiveness could happen through him. He gave up his life in human form so God now has the ability to forgive so that justice could be passed with compassion...am I even close?
  8. Henrysullivan

    Henrysullivan New Member

    Maybe just think about what 'being perfect' really means. Being perfect means that you have perfect standards for yourself, which you always uphold. And it also means that you have perfect contempt for things less than your standards. At the same time though, you also have perfect love for all those things that you create and convey life to. Being perfect in every respect is an impossible way to live--except for God.

    Jesus Christ said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” (Matthew 19:26) This is what Jesus was talking about, reconciling the imperfect to the perfect. But man could not do it. The imperfect cannot reconcile himself to the perfect. But because God IS perfect, God can reconcile Himself to the imperfect.

    Being perfect though means that God must administer perfect justice. Well, perfect justice is the removal of that which is given, life and opportunity. I mean, what else could perfect justice mean? I will try to explain. Let's say that out of nothingness I create you and give you life and opportunity. I tell you that in exchange for that, all you must do is obey what I say. That is a pact, a perfectly justifiable pact. In giving you a conscience, I write that law of obedience on your heart. Therefore you have no excuse than to disobey me. You can't say, "Well, I didn't know." But you choose to disobey anyway. You almost can't help yourself. Because the reward for obedience is simply to remain alive, with all the opportunities that life affords, and that was the condition from the outset, then the perfect justice for disobedience can only be the removal of the same, right? What I detail here is what the scriptures call, "The Law of Sin and Death." You sin, you die. That is what the Law of Moses is all about.

    But God also has perfect love, and a perfect desire to commune with man, His most significant creation, one He made in His own image. God is very proud of His creation, perfectly proud as a matter of fact. So to accomplish that goal, God had to reconcile the imperfect, man, to the perfect, Himself. For this task, man needed a Savior, a divine instrument of reconciliation, made of man, however perfect as God, an intercessor, a model for man to associate with, develop a relationship with, to be judged by, but Who through His own perfection could also have a relationship with God the Father. That is the role of Jesus Christ here. Jesus Christ, the Savior, is a divine instrument of reconciliation between man and God.

    Man is made perfect through faith in Jesus Christ. All authority to make that judgment is given to Jesus Christ by God the Father. That is because Jesus earned that authority. He lived the perfect life God wants for all men to live, and as a result His life could not be taken from Him. He lived through death in the natural and came back to tell about it. So Jesus is the gateway, the door to the Kingdom of Heaven. Through faith in Jesus Christ, that faith which is judged, instead of man's imperfections being judged, man can live as God desires, with God in God's Kingdom, for all eternity. But that is possible only through faith in Jesus Christ. That is how Jesus promises He will judge men, not by their actions of obedience per se, but by their faith in Him. That is what the scriptures tell us.

    Is this making more sense?
  9. Henrysullivan

    Henrysullivan New Member

    How old is this baby Jesus?
    On his mother's side
    a newborn infant
    on his father's side
    the ancient of days
  10. tm53

    tm53 New Member

  11. CarolineJ.

    CarolineJ. New Member

    Happy New Year Hank...

    Missing the Spence wisdom.
  12. Henrysullivan

    Henrysullivan New Member

    Happy New Year. We have been out of town. Will resume posting more wisdom from Spence soon.
  13. hollymm

    hollymm Me, 'in' a tree.

  14. Henrysullivan

    Henrysullivan New Member

    Never be down
    be up
    or getting up
  15. Henrysullivan

    Henrysullivan New Member

    If money
    cannot buy it
    it's probably worth having
  16. CarolineJ.

    CarolineJ. New Member

    I absolutely love #110.

    #111 is a good one too.

    Thanks Hank.
  17. hollymm

    hollymm Me, 'in' a tree.

    It was kinda nice to sit here after I read about money and think about the things that money can't buy. There were actually a lot of things there - all of them are things we should try to have in our lives every day. Just sit and think about it...
  18. Henrysullivan

    Henrysullivan New Member

    Yes, I would much rather have health than money, for example.
  19. hollymm

    hollymm Me, 'in' a tree.

    Remember the Beatles song 'Can't buy me love'?? It's stuck in my head now. Thank God it was a good song :D
  20. Henrysullivan

    Henrysullivan New Member

    Forget your mistakes
    but remember
    what they taught you

    Oh, yes...

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