Monday, August 22, 2011

"Hot Chili For The Brain"

Hot chili? Brain?

I don't know, I guess I always thought "Chicken Soup For The Soul" always sounded kind of wimpy.

I need something more spicy. Something that will engage the sensory motor synapse of the soul/mind/brain.

Something that will snap us out of our complacency. Cold water to the old gray matter. A bracing aftershave for the cerebral cortex. A real kickstart to the medulla oblongata.

I need brain engagement to keep me running up to speed with the Word of God. The fluff is good, and we need it for it's truth, but sometimes we have to move from bland redundancy to breaking up some fallow brain cells.


Okay! Wake up call for this morning....

There are people in the Kingdom of Heaven whom Jesus loves and died for!

There are people in the Kingdom of Hell whom Jesus loves and died for!

We call that paradoxical.

A seemingly contradictory statement that may nonetheless be true.

Go ahead. Let it sink in a bit. Mull it over with your morning coffee and nosh.

Tinker with it as you sit in traffic this morning (not when driving, please!).

Add some scripture to it.

John 3:16 (Amplified Bible) - "For God so greatly loved and dearly prized the world that He [even] gave up His only begotten (unique) Son, so that whoever believes in (trusts in, clings to, relies on) Him shall not perish (come to destruction, be lost) but have eternal (everlasting) life."

The paradox is actually built into that verse.

If Jesus died for the world (and all in it), and not everyone goes to heaven (maybe all dogs do according to the gospel of Disney, but not all people), then the saved and condemned share a common denominator.

There will be people in heaven and in hell who have stood on common even ground.

The ground around the Cross is even and common.

All have received the same, yet the outcome is vastly different.

Wrestle with this if you will, but I warn you, you will get injured a bit.

Remember Jacob? He got his hip dislocated when he wrestled with the Word, the theophanic presence of Christ Himself (Genesis 32).

You'll come out of it with a limp, albeit a spiritual limp, but it's a good thing.

It's better than having your nose out of joint.

The common factor is Jesus' love and willingness to unselfishly die for the chronically selfish (us).

The grand separation within the commonality (hence the paradox), is that only some actually believe it.

" that whoever believes in shall not perish..."

Yes. You can be loved and died for by Jesus and still suffer eternal perdition.

It was all about if you believed it or not.

You never introduced yourself to the one who loved you the greatest.

He will quizzically look upon you someday, and I believe painfully say, "I'm sorry but I have never been acquainted with you."

There's the limp. Truth has to hurt, it really does, but it should go farther and leave a lasting reminder so we do not forget.

Jacob walked a little funny for the rest of his life so he would remember the truth he learned in his encounter with the angel.

Our "limp" should be that while the benevolence of Christ has been extended to the entire human race, there will be some who accept and some who reject. All equal in God's eyes, but restricted by our own foolhardiness.

I hope you have decided to believe in your life. I hope that you are counted among those who reap the benefit of believing. I hope you will not be counted among the tragic today, who never can wrap their brain around what Jesus has done.

It's Him. It's all Him.

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

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