2. What a child of God looks like

Sunday 6 June 2019

Dear Frazer,

The image of God is not tangible. One cannot simply take a photo of Him, show it to another person and say, “There He is! That’s what He looks like!” Being spirit, He has no physicality by which to reference features. So, when it says in Genesis that we are “made in the image of God and according to His likeness” it must be referring to something besides how we look to the world around us.

It is interesting, as well, that there is no record of how Jesus physically appeared. It is strange because in every biography and even in fiction written by humans there is always a description of how the person looked. When people see a man with longish brown hair and a beard to match they exclaim, “You look like Jesus!” Which is nonsense, because no one knows if that’s what He looked like.

I believe that there is a point to the exclusion, because we humans tend to emulate those that we admire. I remember a man from long ago who was a figure in the church. When he grew a goatee, many of his followers grew one, too. I resolved that I would not grow one, because I didn’t wish to become that man, and thought it sheep-like to try and look or dress like him, I just wanted to harvest what he knew because he was super intelligent and ultra articulate with what he knew.

God wants you to look like you, because He’s the one that made humans diverse. It is something to be celebrated. Jesus doesn’t need you to grow long brown hair and a beard in order for you to follow Him. In fact, such would be a vain distraction. Can you imagine if everyone in the church the entire world over did so? The world would perceive Christians to be even crazier than it normally does.

To be made in the image of God does not mean that you look like Him in this or that physical aspect, which is impossible. What it does mean is that you are like Him in other ways. The image of God is who He is. It is love, truth, and mercy. It is correct judgment. It is wanting the best for yourself and for others. It is to be a creative being. It is to be a lord of the earth under the basileia of heaven, as He is in heaven. As He bestowed all authority in heaven and on earth to Jesus, Jesus bestowed it to His disciples. If you are a disciple it is yours for the wielding.

How do you know that you are a disciple?

It is not how much you pray. It is not how much you read your Bible. It is not how many meetings you attend each week. It is not how much you sacrifice or even how much you serve. It is not your membership at this or that church, or one denomination over another.

It is that

  1. You are a child of God
  2. You have eternal life
  3. You are set apart from the world
  4. You deny yourself and pick up your cross
  5. You obey Christ as Lord

To be fathered by God is to become as a child and keep yourself as such. Become as a child of God, I say, because you have been deluded into thinking otherwise for so long and by the whole world that such a reality seems unthinkable. However,

“But to those who received Him, to them He gave the right to become the children of God, even to those who believe in His (Jesus’) name.”

Do you see that it is your right, simply by receiving it? You do not have to become as a child of God after receiving Jesus, you are a child of God. It is your birthright. Yes, you accepted it once. Don’t forget to accept it in this moment also.

At no point did Jesus stop being God’s child. There was no heavenly “adulting” going on. This does not mean He didn’t mature, or didn’t wield power. He claimed authority when it was bestowed upon Him after displaying His worth in the most unmistakable, inarguable of ways. Your problem is that you are used to acting as your own little god of yourself. This is a folly – as you know full well because of the pain that it’s brought to you and others – that you should give up immediately.

Eternal life is to know God and to know Jesus Christ. Do you wonder why you don’t know Him better? It is exactly and only for the reason above. The reason is the same for the church on a macro level. To know God is to be Fathered by Him, not to be pastored by man. A pastor is one who guides when needed, and then gets out of the way.

To be Fathered by God is to pay careful attention to Him. He is with you always, so why stop listening to Him? Who better to tell you who you are and what wonders you may do in life? You can ask men, but their just guessing. They don’t even know themselves, and the ones who do will tell you to go to God for the answers. Go to Him. Spend time with Him. Demand time from life, else you’ll never get it.

To be set apart from the world is to know your place in heaven, child of God, and believe that truth above the lies that surround you. It is to meet the lies of the world with truth just as Jesus did at every turn. To not do so is to somewhere, deep down, agree with it and with its father – Satan. He originates the mindset that is the cause of sickness, disease, poverty, wars, death, and every thing that would keep mankind from God. To be set apart is your surety and protection against the lies and pain of the world.

A disciple must deny himself. It is the self that agrees with the world. It is the part that is deceived by it. It is the part that wants to stay god of the small self. But you do not see Christ this way. He defeated the possibility of the small self within him at every turn, and now He bid you to “Come, follow Me.”

The cross is the death the disciple must die along with Christ. If it does not die, you will spend your life half in the reality of the kingdom, and half in the world. The two do not mix, not even a little. Trust me, I know from experience. One way or another, the self must die for the you that was resurrected with Christ Jesus to be alive on earth in full form. Then the bliss that you knew at conversion – I remember it well because is experienced it with you! – will be your state of being. Isn’t that better than all that the world can offer you?

Finally, no soldier of the kingdom, nor ambassador on its behalf, may wield power without obedience. A tree is known by its fruit. Do you call yourself a follower of Jesus? Show Him. Show Him and see what happens – things that the common man of the world can’t even imagine. All this and more awaits the disciple of Christ, child of God. What are you waiting for?

All for now, my brother. Until next time, yours very sincerely,

-D

1. So It Begins – The Other You

Sunday 26 May 2019

Dear Frazer,

This is a letter of love of an unconventional kind. I write these things mostly to myself, and to share with you rather than instruct. I write this to you not because I am right. I do believe that I am right about certain things, but they aren’t the point. I write this to you because Jesus Christ is righter than all others. Yet, his words are often ignored or diminished. He laid claim on the minds and hearts of “believers.” Yet his followers do so as those blind, lame, and mute: poorly, with much travail, self-affliction, and the wrong kind of silences. Their silences aren’t for listening but because of nothing to say of quality. Their afflictions come because, like a bad habit, they pay attention to the wrong things. The travail consumes them. It manifests in the worries that come in the unbidden watches of the night.

The solution to the many difficulties seems a vast, unreachable secret. And it all is poorly done because of a belief in scarcity. Such can only reproduce itself after its term of incubation. Through pains of labor are born anemic and emaciated children in a world that won’t love them unless it can use them.

I know these things well. I do not speak from a position of being higher than others on some list. I speak from too much experience in the fine arts of stumbling, lampoonery, confusion, and woe. I speak as the first of the stubborn fools that call themselves “Christian,” but show it very little. I am aware of the claim of the Christ upon my life. Yet I am an infant in my expression of reciprocity to Him in making payment to that claim. When I speak of other Christians, believers, followers, or disciples I speak of me. When I say “you” in what follows I also mean “me.”

There is a you that you must raze to the ground. Better yet, you must go deeper. Through the soils of your planting down to where the most extended tips of your roots are in the earth of life. The mother and father of this you the collective consciousness of the world system or cosmos. This also includes the version of Christianity as religion. The world system taints it and puts it in a Christ-less state. Institutional Christianity is a member of that collective consciousness of the cosmos. It will protest day and night to the contrary, as well as call me a heretic for calling it out no matter how right I am.

You are the basin for all the venom and traps that distance you from the real Christ. He had nothing to do with the cosmos other than having to occupy it in human flesh, but it never came to rest within Him. He would that you share the same freedom. It proves too costly for many, because it only comes in death – and that not of the body. It is the death of the identity given you by the cosmos, of which you cooperated in its construct. You are not the architect, nor the builder, nor the financier. But, you are the owner. You are responsible for the whole building.

There is another you to which, while you may have glimpsed it, you do not yet know. This is the one that longs to rise from your heart and BE. This is the one resonates with Christ. It resounds with all His words and shares the same divine longings as God Himself. Yet, it lies under the depths of your other self. It is in the labyrinthine maze of lampoonery that is the rule of man. It is hid in the steaming mounds of rubbish that the world tells you is the only treasure that you can know. The only option is to exhume the forgotten you. It must resurrect from the grave of your own blood, and of the will of the flesh, and of the will of man. Then you may become the you that God imagines is best.

For this you must divorce yourself from your old self, from the cacophony of voices around you, and from the world of man. You must be discerning of who you are listening to at any given moment. Contaminated voices, including you own, will infect you. The only one safe way to do this is by following the commands of Christ only. As he said, “Let no one call you Rabbi, for one is your Rabbi (the Christ), and you are all brothers.” I made the mistake of making men out to be “Rabbi.” I know the kinds of trouble it brews. I have to at least try and warn you. Hardly anyone else will. Men love to be ahead of other men, and above them, and on the stage talking at them, saying, “Listen to me. I know.” But they don’t. Should you go after them, they will be content to be your god. They will espouse regurgitated “Christian” drivel at you for days without end. They will take your money to do “God’s work,” which may have nothing to do with Him. One day you will find yourself staring into space, thinking, “What have I done to show for my life now that I’m near the end?”

And those who are not gods but that you followed will give no answers, because they do not have them. They will abandon you to the silence of your questions. They do not follow the Christ that they proclaim as “lord,” when in fact they stole His seat. Out of one side of their mouths they quote His words. With the other side they neutralize them so that they slide off of the mind and lose all import. They profess to know, but do not know. Thus your confusion. Used up, broken, and at the end of your strength, they will abandon you to the world. They can do no other. The love that they espoused not benefit you because its source is a dry well and no fount of living waters.

Jesus taught the cessation of hierarchy in the kingdom. Spiritual piracy – taking the seat of God as king over other people – is a timeless crime. It is the first way in which we sinned. It is hard to resist. Most don’t even think about it at all. That is why it is imperative to “deny yourself, pick up your own cross, and follow Me.”

The Christ warned us of this in the words of His apostles, so why are you surprised when it happens in your presence? He warned us that we have no excuse. You have sole responsibility for the house that you own. The words of Christ assure us to know the Eternal Way. If another “teacher” contradicts, diminishes, or negates his words or those of the Law and the Prophets that he built upon, such a one is false. He has not the words of Christ in him. If you read and meditate upon His words you will see the difference between them and the teachings of those who put themselves in His seat. Pastors, priests, ministers, shepherds, popes, and rabbis erred the moment they took the title.

It is your responsibility to hold them in account, not the other way around. And once you do, you will have a choice: Jesus alone as your teacher in the Eternal Way, or the Christianity of the throngs. Are you one who loves to have their ears tickled by polished men at the podium? Or do you love your Savior enough to stick to his words alone?

I made my choice years ago. I learned all that I could from “experts,” among whom “I” was one, and found that we were all wrong. It took a long time to realize this, because of the trust and faith that institutions need from you. I believed that my betters knew better that I did, and that I should listen to them above all others. But I was very wrong in this and so is everyone who gives them such an ear and a high and lofty seat. I suppose I deserved the pain that it wrought and the train wreck that it made of my life. No matter now, I am grateful for the extraction from the Christian world system. It was like a tooth yanked from a jaw. The tooth doesn’t want to leave the jaw, and the jaw doesn’t want it to go. But it is the only way to stop the infection and start the healing process.

I started to question what we (the Church) were doing versus what God and Jesus has for us. This led to a crisis in which I had to leave everything behind and become as nothing and no one. Once it realized that its power over me had vanished, the church was happy to oblige me in such nothingness. In an instant, like a school of fish, they ostracized me. I was on my own with no source of income or friends. This data was quite confirming of what I had come to suspect. Our groups spoke often about loving one another. But in it we are infants whose greatness abounds only in our arrogance.

And so began for me a quest. I will not likely achieve it in my lifetime, but I will give it my best effort anyway. My goal is varicolored like a peacock. It is to bring together what God wants of us humans – His will and His desires. Then, to couple them with the heart of the instructions of Christ. The two should be synonymous and seamless if what Jesus said is true. He and God are one, and we can meet them in that oneness. This is the Eternal Way, what Jesus called the “kingdom” or “basileia.” Through it, to have knowledge of and to experience through choice the will of God on earth as it is in heaven. Through relationship with God as Father and with Jesus as teacher. To bring these together with words is my aim. I want to make it understandable and available to the people who hunger to know. You may share in my confusion about the religionized church. I escaped from it in a clumsy and painful manner, but I hope that you do not have to. My hope is to spare others from a similar fate. At the very least, I want to encourage them through it if there are no other options available to them.

All for now, my brother. Until next time, yours very sincerely,

-D