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Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Kahal of God

One friend asked me to explain this term, kahal of God.
This is my response, I am on a journey to fully and deeply understand this, join me if you like.

Ephesians 2 is the basis of understanding that when Paul watched God bring a gentile into
the "faith" that gentile believer was being brought into the commonwealth of Israel.

Kahal, as best as I understand it, is a Hebrew word meaning "gathering of people around 
a common theme" could be a group of union workers, an army, a sewing club.  "Kahal of God" would
be a gathering of believers, whose uniting factor is God.

In the New Testament language, "ecclesia" was used as the Greek equivalent word.  Then in later 
translations "synagogue, or church" (two very different words) were used to translate this one word, 
 depending on the context, re-creating
a "dividing wall" that Christ had specifically come to break down.
"Church was not birthed at Pentecost", but the stream of the Spirit of God moving in the hearts of believers
through Christ who was slain since before the foundation of the world, was widened and deepened into the amazing
big river that we are currently in.  Just because the stream, widened and became deeper, there was no need
for a new name.  

Unfortunately, the new name, came with a price, and the dividing wall comes with a price and that price is 
arrogance and pride, that says, "we are more special than you"  "we aren't rebellious like you"  "we are the new
thing and you are the rejected old thing".   That kind of thinking leads to an "evil freedom" to crush others, the 
crusades and other dark black things that the "church" has carried out through the ages are proof of this.

Anything that puts me out of touch with the truth that "I am a vessel of wrath, that was given mercy."  is going 
to be ultimately destructive to our Spirit.  Anything that elevates me and allows me to look down on "sinners" and to
"make war" on the individual person, that I am supposed to be serving and loving is a very dangerous lie.  So someone
who begins to see the continuing work of a very patient God with a very obstinate chosen people, is softer, more
open to others and their baggage and faults and crap, than someone who is convinced that God has rejected someone else
in favor of "little old special me."

All the language of the New Testament letters (specifically Galatians and Hebrews) that speak of a rejecting of the 
old in favor of the new is directly related to the Mosaic Covenant of sacrifice and offering.  Christ fulfilled that and
so it is "past" BUT, none of that language relates to the Abrahamic covenant of coming to God through faith, which is
older and which is not fading away or passing.  None of that relates to the Davidic covenant of God promising an eternal
reign on the throne of David, through Jesus.  

This is very new to me, but the more that I dive into it, the more true, I am finding it to be.  

Monday, September 29, 2014

The Pharisee in the mirror

Off we went to a convocation in Ohio, that seeks to touch and know the heart of God regarding the times of the end.  My wife and 3 of my kids went with me, all the other years it was just Elijah and I.  Every year at this conference, I confess either to a group, a couple or one person that I am not the husband that I know God is calling me to be.  This year about a week before going, God dropped it in my heart that I was a Pharisee in the way that I treated my wife.  I could have mercy and grace for so many people, but for my wife it was always, "this is wrong", "you could do better here", "this could be improved", "this was wrong", yeh I know, really helpful inspiring words.  I began to process God's word to me and repented in my heart, but next to a waterfall on the last day of the conference God parted the waters that divided my heart from my wife and in brokenness we fell into each others arms confessing, forgiving, loving.  God knew what was coming.  We returned home to a storm, but, by the grace of God, we have put up our umbrellas and gone singing in the rain.  A dear friend is rejoicing deeply in her heart, because she has seen the divide in our marriage and has been praying faithfully for unity harmony and love.

The main revelation I came away from the time in Ohio with, on a larger scale, was that the Kahal of God is a beautiful truth.  Words matter and when we act like God started a totally new thing at Pentecost, it re-erects a dividing wall that Christ came to destroy.  (Ephesians 2) The small but very real and very true stream of God that has been flowing through the faith of Abraham and on down to us was widened and deepened at Pentecost, but it was not "birthed".  Words matter and "church" is a word that has been used to harden hearts, justify wars, establish false systems, and worst of all allow pride to grow in the heart of man.  I intend to be intentional about using Kahal of God when God gives me the grace to truly share, why words matter.

That revelation lead me to understand that because it was much more full of grace than the word 'church' the word 'kahal' would be a place of mercy.

That led me to the thought that the only sin that leads to death is the rejection of what the Holy Spirit reveals about Jesus.

That led me (in part) to a dangerous book.

A book called "Oriented to Faith" by Tim Otto.  It makes the case that people who identify themselves as homosexuals should find a safe and welcoming place in our gatherings, gossips do, people worshiping daily at the idol of mammon do, envying people do, malicious people do, pride filled, arrogant people do...
Told you it was a dangerous book.

May God tear down, pluck up, destroy and overthrow everything that He needs to do for His glory and may He build and plant what will bring glory to His name.  And let it begin with us, ChuckLaura

Beautiful truth from Reggie, revealing the heart of God.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Grace to it

Wonderful confirmation last night as we went to a little service in Bruceton, WV, and the speaker confirmed what I was shown about Eve, just a few hours before. (yesterday's blog)

God also spoke a word to my heart, to proclaim "Grace to it" over whatever difficulty I was facing.  I have done that this morning and it has transformed the situation, without changing one thing, ...oh except for my cold, stony heart!!

Update on Oct. 20th, in yesterdays service I got the same feeling of saying "Grace to it."  from these words spoken by the speaker, "Let the glory handle it."   Both speak of freedom from carrying any burden or trying to make something work out.

Nehemiah 4:2  "What are these feeble Jews doing?"  Sometimes the enemy is not very subtle, he just comes right out and calls you a worthless piece of scum, doing a worthless work.  Go ahead and agree with him about the scum, but proclaim to him that the work is the Lord's and He will complete it!!!

Neh. 6:8  "Such things as you are saying have not been done, but you are inventing them in your own mind."
Nehemiah's accusers had twisted, his words, his intentions, and his motives.  Be aware when you are judging the motives of another person's heart.  This is not your territory, repent, step back, ask forgiveness, and let God do His work and keep your impure, not perfect hands out of it... until... you are given the heart of God for the person or situation, then and only then can you "pray" in unison with Him.  Up until that point you are on very dangerous ground that does not recognize and bow before the truth of 1 Cor. 4:7.

Isaiah 61:3   To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified.
Working on a book, and questioning in my heart if it is "right" to include the person's name in the title of the book.  Really pondering this.  Given this little insight about the end of this verse, The people who are the "work of the Lord" are "called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that HE might be glorified."   The people are given a name, but their name refers back to Him and gives Him glory.  To be called "trees of righteousness" seems to be something that could "puff you up" but not when the purpose of calling you that is to draw attention to the ONE who has shown you such great mercy!

Saturday, September 20, 2014

"religion" the tree of the knowledge of good and evil vs the tree of life

Oh how comforting it is to find the fault in others, to sit around the tree of the knowledge of good and evil and admire how beautiful it is!  " So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise"Gen. 3:6  Hey, now, wait a minute (humming it to the tune of some old song) she saw that it was "good" for food...interesting...there was already a "bent" in her heart (and guilt by association, my heart) that was willing to say that this forbidden, death-filled, tree was good for something, anything, "Really Eve, what gives you that idea?"   
No big surprise that it was pleasant to the eyes, there is a reason that we are commanded to walk by faith and not by sight.  We should be suspicious of every thing that is "pleasant to the eyes."
But how could a tree that would lead to death, in the day that you eat of it, be seen as being "good for food?"
MERCY, I wish I could put that in an even bigger "font".  Oh that we would understand, being shut up in disobedience is the greatest most blessed thing God could have done for us, and I think, (I am a zero on the theological scale, but I think) this proves Eve had a "bent" to sin before she ever took a bite.  
So thank you God that... Romans 11:32 For God has committed them all to disobedience, that He might have mercy on all.
33 Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and His ways past finding out!


Friday, September 19, 2014

Mercy, Cain and Abel

2 Titles of revelation teaching that I listened to while cutting grass today.  The joined together beautifully.  Art Katz, is one of the real men of God that I rely on, even though he died years ago, his ministry lives on.  Mercy told how the cross was shown so vividly many hundreds of  years  more prior to it happening in Psalm 51.  David's desperate cry, and desperate need for mercy led him to call on God for unheard of mercy.  Have we ever done that?  Most of modern 'churchianity' is made up of people who turned to God to fix a problem or area of their life.  They have never been face down, with no hope of salvation, realizing the depth of their sin and longing to know that God would forgive them.  Without this how can the church ever be a people who show mercy based on the mercy shown to them?
The second teaching parts 2 and 3 of Cain and Abel provided a deep insight into the concept of righteousness.  Abel was the willing sacrifice to take Cain to a place where his acquiring, busy, hectic life slowed down long enough to consider the terrible sin against his brother.  Abel willingly took the walk that would lead to his death, because Cain needed him to, because God wanted him to.  Therein, lies righteousness.   

Monday, September 1, 2014

Jason Upton, Tom Quinlan, Mercy

Jason Upton has a song, Hammer and the Awkward Nail.  His songs leave room for interpretation by the individual and this is what that one meant to me this morning.  God doesn't use magic wands, He changes us through the suffering, sacrificial love that He showed us on the cross.   The incredible cost of salvation is the incredible beauty of salvation.  The God who weeps with those who weep, experiences the cost of the correction that He brings us.
Tom Quinlan, put Deut. 32 to music and as I listened to it last night, I noticed that "O that they were wise" coincided with the punishment that God was bringing.  He longed for people to see that those things were from His loving hand, for His good purposes.
Tom's online Bible Study, God's Foretold Work session 50 was fantastic.    Travis "went off" and proclaimed that, the center of what God was requiring in Malachi was, for I am "a great King."