Tuesday, March 18, 2014

So What?

I Corinthians 5
This morning I was reading 1 Corinthians.
Those people were pretty "out there".
I'm not sure what they were thinking in chapter 5.
Paul wrote to them in part to deal with a really bad situation.
A man was sleeping with he father's wife and the church at Corinth was apparently okay with the whole situation.
Now, we aren't told if this woman was his mom or step-mom, but either way this is a case of something gone terribly wrong.
The majority of people even in our culture would say that a person should not sleep with your mom or step mom.
Now, remember, these were people in the church, so they were held to the standard that God says is good....and Paul was kind of taken back by the behavior not only of the guy and his mom, but also that the people in the church there didn't say anything to these two about this love interest being problematic.
Well, so what?
What does that have to do with anything?
Well, the truth is, that if you are not a follower of Jesus Christ you really don't have any reason to care about this at all.  You are not obligated to follow God's moral code and there is no reason that this scenario should bother you.
But it might anyway....
This brings me to my next and more relevant question.
How should we decide what "sleeping arrangements" are okay and which ones are not?
This is a big topic today.
If you don't subscribe to God's way of doing things, then frankly any arrangement is alright.
You may marry your mom if you like.  You can marry John and William as long as everyone is okay with the arrangement.  I have even heard of a woman who married the Eiffel Tower which is pretty weird, but if you're not a follower of Christ...well, you know....
But if you name the name of Christ then you should feel a tension to line your life up with that which he says is good and right.
(God will work through you to do this by the way...you really can't do it by self will).
You will never be able to do it perfectly, we come to Jesus as we are and he sheds his grace on every part of our lives.
But, when we are involved in something that God says is not good (there's a short list in 1 Corinthians 5)
AND you're a follower of Christ...well, somebody who loves you ought to say something to you about it.
And that's all I have to say about that.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014


It's been a long time since I have written in Purchased.
This morning I was reading John 21.  It's where Jesus appears to the disciples after he has been resurrected.
He stands on the shore of the lake of Galilee and asks Peter, Thomas, Nathaniel,  and four other disciples how the fishing went during the night...because it had been a bummer of a fishing night again.  There weren't going to be any great fishing stories because they hadn't caught a single fish.
The first time Jesus asked about the fishing was the day he called Peter to follow him.
Jesus was coming full circle.  Visiting some of the guys again after another unproductive night of fishing.
Both times Jesus pulls in the mother load of fish for them, and both times the massive amount of fish are left and we don't know what happens to them.
I imagine in a culture without a stock market and retirement plans that someone claimed the fish...but it wasn't the guys who pulled them in.
This could be a lesson in itself, but that's not where we are headed today.
After a great reunion the guys sit around a fire with Jesus and roast a couple of fish for breakfast.
And Jesus starts to question Peter.
You know the story right?  Jesus asks Peter three times:
Do you love me Peter?
Do you love me Peter?
Do you love me Peter?
Peter gets kind of angry, but in the final  response he gives Jesus the answer for which he has been "fishing".
The first two times Peter answers, he uses a word that in the Greek is phileo (I am your great friend) but Jesus isn't looking for a great friend.
The last time Peter answers Jesus, he uses the Greek word agape (I am wholly committed to loving you no matter what happens).  When Jesus hears this, he is satisfied and gives Peter his life assignment.
This is what Jesus wants from us.  Full commitment, full trust, and that we love him more than anyone, anywhere, at any time.
This won't come as any surprise to most of us.
The surprise may come when we find out that Jesus loves us this way.  He loves you more than a mom and dad love there kids, more than the love you felt when you fell in love with your spouse.  Yep, Jesus is massively in love with you.
He loves you enough to give you everything you need.
He loves you enough to give you a purpose.
He loves you enough to care about every tear that falls from your eye.
He loves you enough to cover your sin with a costly sacrifice so that where he is, you can also be some day.
Yep, it's all true (I've been reading up on it for a while now).
So go ahead and ask him to show you if he's for real.
If you are looking for him honestly, he will show himself.