2 Timothy 3:12 "Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution."
Without a proper understanding of history and the original audience (which Paul was addressing), many teach that those who live in countries where persecution doesn't abound aren't "living godly". There are others who call things like dirty looks "persecution"...in order to make themselves feel more "godly". It amazes me how the same crowd that believes these lies are also the first to demand "religious liberty". Why would anyone push so hard for something that they believe promotes "ungodliness"? Don't believe the lies, but DO PRAY (and act...as He leads you) for those who are truly being persecuted for Righteousness' sake.
Was Jesus "less Godly" among His friends and while He taught the multitudes than He was while hanging on the cross? Of course not!
Your "Godliness" depends solely on the Finished Work of Christ and your walk therein, not your persecution resume!
You may not know this, but Jerusalem and her Temple were referred to as "Heaven and Earth" by the Jewish people during and prior to the First Century. An understanding of this, along with a historical understanding of what happened in and around 70 AD, will allow you to read the New Testament through a completely different lens than Dispensationalism has allowed.
I submit to you that there are many present "New Heaven and New Earth" realities which have been untapped due to the error of many who have mistaken historical events for imminent or future apocalyptic happenings. The answer to the question, "Who is God's Temple and New Jerusalem now?", will help you to unlock the mystery of "The New Heaven and New Earth". Christ in us is the Hope of Glory!
The following verse will also come in handy...when you realize that "this generation" was THAT generation (The Generation of Jesus' original audience).
Mt. 24:34 "Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place."
Additional note: This is NOT "replacement" Theology.
It has always INCLUDED both "Jew & Gentile"..."The ONE NEW MAN"!
Food for Thought: Legalistic systems of control (Which prefer to PLAY Holy Spirit in people's lives...instead of trusting His "resume") promote abstinence in areas where the Bible calls for moderation. When it comes down to it, moderation often requires more self-control, which is part of the Fruit of the Spirit (and can't be humanly manufactured), than abstinence.
What religion reads to you: Romans 6:11 "Likewise reckon yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord."
What religion teaches you: "Reckon yourselves to be very much alive unto sin, but dead unto God, regardless of Jesus Christ our Lord,...until some future day in the sweet bye and bye."
When we RECKON things as our Loving Father does, we begin to act accordingly. Sin isn't a "nature", it is a mindset rooted in a false identity...which is fueled by disagreeing with God...OR quenched by taking Him at His Word and walking in agreement with His Spirit!
Jesus' crucifixion was the result of us taking our wrath out on our Loving, heavenly Father...in the person of Christ (and Him allowing us to do it)...from a twisted, political and religious mindset. It had nothing to do with God desperately wanting to kill us, while Jesus talked Him out of it...after deciding to be the substitutionary victim of His Father's cruel and deadly torture. Every Old Covenant sacrifice was a shadow of God's LOVE for us...which would be perfectly revealed in and through Christ! The only blood that our Loving, heavenly Father was ever thirsty for was His own! He has always LOVED us!
1. Both of my parents died before I was 13 years of age.
2. My Dad died attempting to set a Guinness Book record.
3. Along with my Dad's attempted record came stories and photos of us
in People Magazine and video footage on all of the major news networks.
4. My Mom died around 4 months after I told her that I wished
she was dead. (Note: I Love & appreciate my Mom & Dad.)
5. I was bullied something fierce during my childhood and
adolescent years, until I went psycho & started fighting back.
6. I struggled with suicidal thoughts and tendencies...and
would have ended it...had it not been for a supernatural encounter with Jesus.
7. I suffered with what many would call "addictions".
8. I grew up with the horrible misconception that Jesus was
angry, temperamental, and out to get me.
9. A most precious family took me & my brother in after
my parents died. They treat us as their very own to this day.
10. I have some terrible memories, to include some horrible
experiences with church people and leaders.
11. My past could have been much, much, much worse.
12. The Goodness of God in my life exponentially outweighs
all of the bad things on this list...and more than can be
written in this lifetime.
13. My great experiences with my brothers, sisters, fathers, & mothers
in Christ have exponentially outweighed the bad.
14. I'm not a religious nut job. My experience is very real.
15. I really love people. ALL people.
16. I'm 51 years old and full of JOY!
17. I think YOU'RE precious!