And he showed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding from the throne of God and of the Lamb. In the middle of its street, and on either side of the river, was the tree of life, which bore twelve fruits, each tree yielding its fruit every month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.
Revelation 22:1 & 2
Tuesday, July 02, 2013
The Tree of Knowledge
'If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.'
Talk to most any Christian today, and you will likely hear that if we claim to have absolute truth, there must be something wrong. 'No one can know for certain that what they hold to be true is necessarily the truth', you might hear! 'To claim that you hold absolute truth, is to be proud, boastful, and in danger of hell-fire!'
This is relativistic to the core, and damnable!
Jesus said that there is ONE way to know the truth, the Absolute Truth! That ONE Way is to abide in Him, and to follow His teachings and Life! If we live according to this Word, Jesus said, we will know the Truth, and the Truth will set us free!
So why are so many Christians in today's America struggling in the chains of bondage? Why are they not exercising that Truth in Living? Oh, I know that these same Christians would most likely have the same response as the Pharisees in the next verse, but, just like the Pharisees, they are blind to the fact that they are at present, as in the past, laboring under bondage!
There is a big 'hub-bub' in the headlines all over the country right now about how the courts ( government ) are redefining marriage. They have granted the right for same-sex couples to be licensed in marriage. Most Christians are up in arms about this, saying things like, 'we cannot allow our govenment to redefine marriage, for that would signal the end of marriage, even America itself'!
Sounds like chains to me, and self-wrought chains at that! First of all, no government but God's has either the right or the ability to define marriage! When God brought Eve to Adam, He defined marriage as between a man and a woman ( 'Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh' - Genesis 2:24 ). Any government of men can only uphold or disregard God's institution of marriage, not redefine it!
Another example of how many Christians have allowed themselves to be bround under bondage and servitude is the 501(c)3 ( tax-exempt ) statua that has been granted by the Federal Gogernment ( USA. Inc. ) to individual churches. More self-wrought chains! Churches, by nature, ARE exempt from taxation! Most Christians have been blinded to this fact by the lies and machinations of their government, which is not God's!
What can be done to remedy this sticky situation that we've gotten ourselves into?
First of all, we should not only preach this Truth and Freedom, but even more importantly, we should exercise this Freedom and Truth in Living! In many congregations today, the Gospel of Truth and Freedom is preached, but less often, it is practiced. Oh sure, there are individual Christians out there who are living inconsistently with the Truth as they claim to know it, but for the most part, Christians today keep that Knowledge 'behind the eyes, and between the ears'. 'After all', they say, 'this world is not our home; we're only passing through'. It would seem, to many, anyway, that this Knowledge has nothing to do with our everday Life; it has only, or mostly to do with where we go after our biological bodies perish!
The Truth that we have been set free from all government but God's must ring out across this Land if we are ever to live in True Freedom! Yes, as any good Christian will tell you; we have been set free from the Law of Sin & Death, but that only has to do with our spiritual, not physical, or biological experience! Because we have been set free from the Law of Sin & Death, we have the capacity and Freedom in Christ to live out that Truth in our Lives!
May we ever Live that Truth, as we experience Life in Our Father's World, and always share that Truth with others, as we Commune with the Body of Christ!