Archive for the ‘Cross’ Tag

Why we crucify

“The Cross alone exposes for the first time the real condition of mankind… [It] is the supreme revelation of the sin of mankind.” – T.F. Torrance, The Doctrine of Jesus Christ, p. 158.

What does the Cross say about the human race?  That we kind of suck?  Yes, but there’s more… Because what we did to Jesus was not unusual behavior for us. Anthropological evidence suggests that the lynch mob is one of THE constant features of all human societies. Isn’t that interesting?

Homo sapiens is the species that crucifies.

Why do we crucify? Because we must.

hangingtree

“Hanging Tree” by BigFace. Purchase a print at http://fav.me/d1uq4yd

At least we think we do.

I submit for your consideration an approach to anthropology called “Mimetic Theory,” which starts with the observation that humans crucify. For anthropologist Rene Girard, this theory arose from an intuition shared by us at TrinityAndHumanity.com — that Jesus on the Cross is the clue to what really makes humans tick.

Mimetic Theory suggests a universal pattern that all human societies follow –– When their social cohesion is threatened by internal conflict, they will resort to scapegoating. They find someone to hate, and that shared hate unifies the community.

It’s the exact opposite of the Trinity.

The Triune Life consists in the mutual self-giving of Father, Son and Spirit. This is THE inner logic of the Divine Life which the incarnate Christ is earthing in the world, the kind of Communion in which each gives one’s whole self for the good of others.

When you flip that perfectly upside-down, you get Scapegoating –– laying down someone else’s life for the benefit of the rest of us. Ultimately, all of human civilization is held together by the logic of none other than Caiaphas the High Priest—“It is better to have one man die for the people than to have the whole nation destroyed” (John 11:50).

Girard seeks an understanding of the human race which starts with the inner logic of the Cross. I think he’s onto something.

What do you think?

God’s Goodness Despite The Spread Of Sin!

Genesis 4

https://trinityandhumanity.files.wordpress.com/2016/02/16-02-21-gods-goodness-despite-the-spread-of-sin-gen-4-1-26-tah.mp3”

As the graciously adopted children of God, Father, Son and Spirit, He calls us to participate with him in slowing the spread of sin by being salt and light in our world and by proclaiming the peace and joy of His Kingdom (Jesus!)

*photo courtesy of dailybiblememe.com

How To Share God’s Good News With Others! pt.6

Sent by God 4

In the POWERFUL conclusion to this series, where it is proclaimed that you are CALLED, EMPOWERED and SENT by the FATHER, through JESUS THE SON, and IN THE SPIRIT, understand:

  • How to be a faithful steward of time in this hectic world to which you are sent!
  • How to be the best steward of gifts and talents and experience God’s best even through discouraging personal weaknesses that can distract you!
  • How to organize money and maximize its impact in participation with Christ in this world that’s trying to consume it all!

You won’t have time to sleep on this one cause you’ll be either glad or mad! hahaha

Then:

1.) get this NEW and UPDATED WORKSHEET you’ll want to keep for review: goroncy-a-theology-of-mission-share-God’s-good-news copy 2 , and…

2.) grab a pencil or pen

3.) fill-in-the-blanks as you prepare to share with others what you are learning to others who can share what their learning to others!

 

Here is part 1 if you are wondering: https://trinityandhumanity.com/2015/09/14/some-things-jesus-come-before-other-things/

Here is part 2 https://trinityandhumanity.com/2015/09/21/how-to-share-gods-good-news-with-others-pt-2/

Here is part 3 https://trinityandhumanity.com/2015/09/28/how-to-share-gods-good-news-with-others-pt-3/

Here is part 4  https://trinityandhumanity.com/2015/10/05/how-to-share-gods-good-news-with-others-pt-4/

Here is part 5 https://trinityandhumanity.com/2015/10/19/how-to-share-gods-good-news-with-others-pt-5/

 

Photo courtesy of: http://www.lifeway.com

 

How To Share God’s Good News With Others! pt.5

9-21-2015 Putting Faith into Words 7-04-39 PM15.10.18 How To Share God’s Good News With Others, pt.5 (1 Cor 15, Rev 21.22-26) – TAH

As the saying goes, you can live one minute without air but not one second without hope! Could you use some hope and clarity about your present purpose and destiny?; hope about life even in this present evil age? If you answered YES then this is a message for you! In this message of God’s Good News get good Christian responses to your questions like:

Why am I working so hard and long on the job and in the home? Why am I hanging in there in my marriage and relationships? Why am I attending this particular school of higher learning? Why should I take time off from work and rest, or take a vacation! Why am I learning to be so patient, peaceful, and persevering in traffic, and even in tragedy?! Why am I learning to be so prickly, perturbing, and provoking even though I am by nature more meek, shy and non-disturbing?

Bottom line: Understand the importance of sharing Jesus’ Hope with others in word and deed as we participate with Him, presently, in the Spirit!

1.) grab a pen or pencil,

2.) download this worksheet: How To Share God’s Good News With Others- TAH (fill in the blank),  (or use the one you have already printed out), and,

3.) fill-in-the-blanks as you prepare to teach what you are learning to others who can teach what their learning to others!

Here is part 1 if you are wondering: https://trinityandhumanity.com/2015/09/14/some-things-jesus-come-before-other-things/

Here is part 2 https://trinityandhumanity.com/2015/09/21/how-to-share-gods-good-news-with-others-pt-2/

Here is part 3 https://trinityandhumanity.com/2015/09/28/how-to-share-gods-good-news-with-others-pt-3/

Here is part 4  https://trinityandhumanity.com/2015/10/05/how-to-share-gods-good-news-with-others-pt-4/

 

Photo courtesy of: http://www.k180.org

 

How To Share God’s Good News With Others! pt.4

9-21-2015 Sharing jesus 6-13-14 PM

15.10.04 How To Share God’s Good News With Others, pt.4 (Rom 8 The Msg) – TAH

Do you realize the opportunity you have been given to reach those who have not yet received the Jesus Who has received them? Pastor Timothy reminds you how your union with Christ means your participation with Jesus Christ, our Lord, in this present evil world. God has called you to participate with Him in sharing Himself with others so others can walk with us even as we all struggle together worshiping our Father in the Spirit! As a child of God, Father, Son and Spirit, you have the empowerment of the Spirit to see lives joyously transformed as people are informed by His light of love in this world, in and through you!

Plus…

In this very practical message, be reminded HOW to share God’s grace graciouslyHow TO share, and how NOT to share, the Good News with those struggling in the LGBT communityBe reminded of a better image you and everyone should have in mind about our present trials and painsUnderstand how to point people to the real intent and subject of scripture so that scripture reading becomes less burdensome and more joyful and hopeful as they meet Jesus there…, Grasp an often overlooked “cure” for depression if other medical, biological and spiritual reasons can be ruled out… plus LOTS more!

So,

1.) grab a pen or pencil,

2.) download this worksheet: How To Share God’s Good News With Others- TAH (fill in the blank),  (or use the one you have already printed out), and,

3.) fill-in-the-blanks as you prepare to teach what you are learning to others who can teach what their learning to others!

Here is part 1 if you are wondering: https://trinityandhumanity.com/2015/09/14/some-things-jesus-come-before-other-things/

Here is part 2 https://trinityandhumanity.com/2015/09/21/how-to-share-gods-good-news-with-others-pt-2/

Here is part 3 https://trinityandhumanity.com/2015/09/28/how-to-share-gods-good-news-with-others-pt-3/

Photo courtesy of: http://www.k180.org

How To Share God’s Good News With Others! pt.3

9-21-2015 Putting Faith into Words 7-04-39 PMhttps://trinityandhumanity.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/15-09-20-how-to-share-gods-good-news-with-others-pt-3-rom-12-1-2-1-peter-3-4-tah.mp3

Are you suffering in either a small or great way? 

Do you know anyone who is suffering?

How do we understand suffering in the Light of the God Revealed in Jesus? 

In this message, understand the place of suffering in sharing God’s Good News with others and be sure, again, to:

1.) grab a pen or pencil,

2.) download this worksheet: How To Share God’s Good News With Others- TAH (fill in the blank) , or use the one you have already printed out, and,

3.) fill-in-the-blanks as you prepare to teach what you are learning even in the middle of your suffering!

Here is part 1 if you are wondering: https://trinityandhumanity.com/2015/09/14/some-things-jesus-come-before-other-things/

Here is part 2 https://trinityandhumanity.com/2015/09/21/how-to-share-gods-good-news-with-others-pt-2/

Photo courtesy of: http://www.k180.org

Did God forsake Jesus?

Did God ever Forsake Jesus? Consider these words of Jesus on the Cross, “Eli Eli lama sabachthani?” These words translated are “My God, my God why have you forsaken me?” Did God the Father abandon or forsake Jesus on the Cross? Did the Eternal Father of the Eternal Son really pronounce him accursed? Is it possible that the same Father who declared, “This is my beloved Son in whom my soul delights.” really turned his back on Jesus so that he suffered alone and isolated in his hour of greatest need? Much has been written about this subject so let me throw in on the matter. Let’s look at what the Bible has to say and let our minds be conformed to the mind of Christ .

If we begin with the character and nature of God we will see a clear answer to this question.

Is it possible that the Father forsook Jesus?

Is it possible that the Father forsook Jesus?

In John 1:1 we read; “In the beginning was the Word and the Word was God and the Word was with God.” The Greek word for with in this passage indicates a face-to-face, personal, and intimate relationship. Jesus and his Father have eternally been in this intimate face-to-face relationship in the communion of the Holy Spirit. There has never been a time when the Father, Son, and Spirit have not been in intimate loving relationship. The Triune God exists as relationship and is Love. The Father, Son, and Spirit know no other way to be toward one another than to be as Love.

On the Cross Jesus is executing a rabbinic exercise where the teacher begins to quote a Psalm and the congregants there finish it. Jesus is quoting Psalm 22 which begins “My God my God why have you forsaken me?” The Psalm does not end in defeat it ends in victory. The point made by Jesus is victory not defeat or having been forsaken.

Also who is Jesus’ God? What God does Jesus worship? Well Jesus does not have a God he is God with the Father and the Spirit so just on that point alone the idea that Jesus is literally telling us that the Father has forsaken him cannot be accurate.  In I Corinthians 12:3 Paul says, “Therefore, I want you to understand that no one speaking by the Spirit of God ever says, ‘Let Jesus be cursed!” I would hazard a guess that God the Father speaks by the Spirit. It is not the Father who put Jesus to death on the Cross… it was us. (Heb. 12:3) Consider II Corinthians 5:19 “…that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself…” The word for in there really means in. In John 14:20 Jesus says, “In that day you will know that I am in my Father and you are in me and I am in you.” Jesus and the Father mutually indwell one another and the Holy Spirit is facilitating this relationship at all times.

Some argue that because Jesus took on our sin God the Father had to turn his back on him because God cannot have any part with sin. Let us never forget that Jesus is God- co-equal with the Father and the Spirit.  If God can have no fellowship with sin how did Jesus eat with sinners, become human, and finally take on all of our sin!

Also ponder this… there is a politician I know of that is on his third marriage. When he married wife number one he said, “I’ll never leave you nor forsake you.” Then he cheated on wife number one with the woman who would become wife number two. When he married wife number two he said, “I’ll never leave you nor forsake you.” Then he cheated on wife number two with the woman who would become wife number three. When he married wife number three he said, “I’ll never leave you nor forsake you.” Well neither wife number two nor three have any basis on which to believe him because of what he has actually done. He has proven that he will in fact leave and forsake. So if the Eternal Father of Jesus would leave and forsake him in his hour of greatest need how can we ever believe that he will never leave nor forsake us?

Let me say with clarity and determination… God the Father most certainly did not forsake Jesus on the Cross and Jesus did not say that he did. This Father’s Day as we celebrate all that is good about our dads let us put away in our hearts, minds, and in our Faith the blasphemous notion that Jesus’ Father ever turned his back on him and let us celebrate that he will never turn his back on us!

~ Bill Winn

Noah’s Ark and the Eucharist

One can find Communion preaching texts in the most unexpected places…

The Noah story in Genesis starts with some disturbing words about the grief suffered by Yahweh as he experiences the reality of human brokenness.  He is suffering pain at the hands of his creatures.  His pain is real, but he finally decides to stay with the pain for the sake of staying with humanity.  He is free to escape the situation, but he chooses instead to bear in his own soul the terrible contradiction between himself and his self-destructing creatures.

This is the essence of forgiveness and reconciliation.

Let’s say I have wronged you in some hurtful way.  If you bear a grudge against me, it means you are choosing to hold on to the pain I have caused you, so that you might give that pain back to me at some later date.  So you hold the pain close, letting it wound you over and over again (when you don’t really need to experience the wound more than once).  Of course, you’ll discover this doesn’t work.  Even if you get revenge on me and cause me pain, YOUR pain will still not go away.

The only way for you to be freed from the pain is to let go of it, which means letting go of those possible futures in which you might get to dish it back to me.  In other words, you need to forgive me, not for my sake, but for YOURS.  Forgiveness doesn’t make it okay that I did what I did to you.  What forgiveness does is set you free from being wounded any more than you already are.

Now, you may well decide to forgive me but never talk to me again.  It may be that I am a destructive force in your life, and you need to set up boundaries to protect yourself from future damage (This kind of forgiveness is often necessary in abusive relationships, for example).

Reconciliation takes it a step further to seeking healing for the relationship.  And it can happen if both of us are willing to reconcile.  But if you want reconciliation but I don’t, then you have a problem.  You either need to give up on your dreams of reconciliation, or you can choose to keep seeking reconciliation in the hopes that I will someday come around.  It’s a choice to take a long and painful journey that may never pay off.

This is what I see in Yahweh’s decision to not destroy the whole human race in the Flood.  Not only is he forgiving, but he is choosing the bloody path of hoped-for reconciliation.  It’s a path that will one day get himself killed by human hands.

He shed his blood for the forgiveness of sins.

I used to think this meant that the Father was feeling wrathful and therefore couldn’t extend the gift of forgiveness without first receiving a bucketful of blood, so Jesus gave him HIS blood, and then the Father felt appeased and agreed to give out forgiveness.

But I don’t believe that anymore.  Forgiveness/Reconciliation is part of the divine nature.  God don’t make no junk, and God don’t hold no grudges, neither.  To the Trinity, forgiving and seeking reconciliation is a “Well, DUH!” kind of decision.

But forgiveness/reconciliation hurts.  It comes at a cost.  Yahweh’s choice to stick with humanity has HURT him.  We see it in his grief in the Noah story, and we ultimately see it on the cross.  On the cross, we see exactly how far Yahweh is willing to go to maintain his commitment to forgive us and seek reconciliation with us.

His choice to forgive our sins means choosing to shed his blood.  And he is perfectly okay with his decision.

~ John Stonecypher

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