All Posts Tagged: energy

Means of Life – Connection to Jesus

God gave us eternal life; this life is in His Son.
“So, whoever has the Son has life;
whoever rejects the Son, rejects life.
 

1 John 5:11-12

 


Imagine a solid gold table lamp. It has a cord at the end of which is a plug designed for connection to an energized receptacle. However, the expensive lamp is UNplugged. It can be seen and handled. But, from the perspective of purpose the gadget is LIFE-LESS! It merely exists. Everything changes when the cord is plugged in. Energized the lamp fulfills its purpose. The conclusion is simple: connection means power for purpose whereas separation signifies a lifeless existence.

God gave us eternal [living at 100% satisfaction] life; this life is in His Son.” (1 John 5:11) Provided by the Maker, Jesus is the source of power uniquely generated for humankind. “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never become hungry….(John 6:35)  “God invented us as a man invents an engine. A car is made to run on gasoline. It would not run properly on anything else. God designed the human machine to run on Himself. He Himself is the fuel our spirits were designed to burn,” (Mere Christianity, p 50)

So, whoever has the Son has life….” (1 John 5:12) Jesus said to the fishermen, ‘Come, follow ME!’ At once they left and went with Him.” (Matthew 4:19) “When we are called to follow Jesus, we are summoned to an exclusive attachment to His person” (Cost of Discipleship, p 49)

“Jesus came into the created universe, bringing with him new life. Everyone who gets it gets it by personal contact with Him” (C.S. Lewis in Mere Christianity). (Mere Christianity, p 221)

Getting connected to others via phone, computer, car, train, or plane is costly. Attachment to your Maker is free of charge! Just get connected to Jesus. But wait! There’s more. You’ll also receive LGS without charge! It’s an offer you can’t refuse!

Easter Impact – Part 4

But thanks be to God, who keeps giving us the victory
through our Lord Jesus Christ!

1 Corinthians 15:57


The impact of EASTER is Energy.

The impact of EASTER is Attitude.

The impact of EASTER is Success!


SUCCESS
! Millions of books have been sold on this subject. For example, Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill has sold over 70 million copies since 1928. Peter Kreeft once made a humorous comment about the plethora of books on sex. “
The fact that there are thousands of ‘how to do it’ books on the subject does not mean that we know how; in fact, it means the opposite. It’s when everybody’s pipes are leaking that people buy books on plumbing!” This, I believe, is the reality about topic of success.

Everybody wants to know how to do success‘. However, success is not primarily about DOING! According to Jesus it’s about BEING!” “Self-help is no help at all. Self-sacrifice is the way to your true self. What good would it DO to get everything you want and lose YOU, the real you?” (Mark 8:34-37) In other words, in the process of doing the secrets of success one can lose one’s real self. Elvis Presley, Whitney Houstin, Prince, Robin Williams, Cobain, Eastman, Van Gogh, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Virginia Woolf, and my friend – the list is endless …  creatively successful people who “cashed it in”! I shall attempt no commentary except to say this: in all their DOING they didn’t find peace with their BEING. If that seems simplistic to you, take it from one who knows.

John Calvin described this world as a theatrum gloriae, a “dazzling theater” displaying God’s glorious works. Viewing the following exhibits in the Creator’s theater, ask yourself: how are these successful? If this is below your “pay grade”, you have my sympathy.


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Of course, I know they are JUST fish! That’s the point. Though they are subhuman, each in their extravagant BEING-NESS is a display of God’s handiwork. As such, each is victorious. Each is a SUCCESS! They ARE what the Creator intended them TO BE in his theater. 

Research has shown exactly what Jesus said. You can gain the whole world and lose YOUR-SELF! Merely DOING is a DEAD-end! Success (victory) is only found in uncovering who you ARE according to the Creator’s design. There is no greater expression of this than in Michelangelo’s graphic representation of the creation of Adam.

Easter means that the Creator is severely intent on resurrecting a new you built upon His original design. Short of that everything is but “smoke and fire” or, as Solomon said, “Emptiness!”

Look at the fish again. I’m absolutely serious! Have you discovered that YOU, not what you DO, are a masterpiece in the Creator’s theater? Easter success (victory) is to be discovered by uncovering the YOU that is available by virtue of Jesus’ resurrection.

Have you experienced the touch of the Creator’s finger on your life? It’s nothing less than the power of the resurrection? “The gospel is absurd and the life of Jesus is meaningless unless we believe that He lived, died, and rose again with but one purpose in mind: to make a brand-new creation.” (Brennan Manning, The Furious Longing of God )

OK, a point of transparency! This is THE struggle of my 74 year old life! 

EASTER IMPACT – PART 2

I pray that God will give you spiritual insight to know how tremendous is the power available to us who believe in God. That power is the same divine power which was demonstrated in Christ when he raised him from the dead.

Ephesians 1:18-19

Since the beginning of time nobody saw it. Then, in 1905 a school dropout, working at a patent office, saw it through the lens of mathematics. Einstein concluded that mass (m) and energy (e) are equal, since the speed of light (c2) is constant. In other words, mass can be changed into unbelievable amounts of energy.

 

 

Then, on August 6, 1945, the world’s first atomic bomb exploded over the Japanese city of Hiroshima. The explosion wiped out 5 sq/mi of the city and immediately killed 80,000 people; tens of thousands more would later die of radiation exposure. For the first time the power of E=m2 was physically seen by mankind.

 

 

Paul employs three different Greek words for power. The first is δυναμεως which means inherent power, that is, power residing in a thing by virtue of its nature. The second Greek word is ενεργεια which means power in action. Finally, we have κρατους which refers to the effect of the released of power. At Hiroshima the inherent power of uranium was released in the dropping of the atomic bomb, the effect of which was the domination of destruction.

Paul asserts that the Father released his inherent power the effect of which was the resurrection of Jesus. “Death has been swallowed up in victory.” (1 Corinthians 15:52)

 

Note the object of Paul’s prayer: “spiritual insight to know how tremendous is the power available to us who believe in God.” Einstein saw but the number of others who saw was minuscule. It would be years (1945) before what Einstein saw was successfully tested in Alamogordo, New Mexico so that others saw and believed.

 

 

Paul sawhow tremendous is the power…” that is inherent (δυναμεως) in the followers Jesus. However, he also knew that it would only be released (ενεργεια) via “spiritual insight”. Consequently, He prayed “that God will give you spiritual insight to know…” Peter saw the inherent power in Jesus’ word, “Come!” Therefore, “he got down out” (ενεργεια) of the boat and walked on the water towards Jesus.(Matthew 14:29) Peter’s inherent power was released, the result of which was his water-walking!

Easter means energy that is present NOW!

However, this inherent power is available only to those whose insight has been enlightened so that they will take action that is a mystery to “normal” people (think of the Noah story in Genesis 6.

Two questions:

  1. Have you been connected to Jesus by faith? This is the greatest experience of power you will see!
  2. Have I ever done a Peter? Have I ever been a water-walker? If you attempt to dodge the question with your theology or what’s commonly accept as normal, let me quote John 14:12: “I tell you for certain that if you have faith in me, you will do the same things that I am doing. You do even greater things now that I am going back to the Father.”

Easter NOW! – Part 1

Christ is Risen! Hallelujah!

This is the exuberate exclamation of Jesus’ followers during the Easter Season!

 

 

Do you have one of these? Though requiring a lawyer to decipher the legalese, the elementary components of a life insurance are unpretentious. After the policy is purchased the insured remits monthly payments to the insurance company. Though the policy may offer a sense of well-being in the present, the big benefit, a predetermined sum of money, is experienced only upon the death of the insured.

 

 

For most Christ-followers the resurrection is believed as illustrated above. On the cross Jesus purchased a “paid in fullLife Insurance Policy. “God loved the people of this world so much that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who has faith in him will have eternal life and never really die.”[1] Certainly the “Jesus Policy” offers a sense of comfort here and now. “In the Father’s great mercy, he has caused us to be born again into a living hope, because Jesus Christ rose from the dead.”[2] But, the full impact of the policy is experienced in the future upon death. So, the historic creed of the Christian church affirms: “I believe in the resurrection of the body and the life everlasting.”

Paul methodically explains the Life Insurance Policy in 1 Corinthians 15, his opus magnum about the resurrection. Curiously, Paul elsewhere reveals that, whereas this perspective is accurate, it is nonetheless woefully incomplete. So, throughout his writings he almost exclusively focuses on the impact of the resurrection for daily life here and now. This is the subject of our Easter exploration. The roadmap is as follows:

 >   Energy

Ephesians 1:18-19 I pray that God will give you spiritual insight to know how tremendous is the power available to us who believe in God. That power is the same divine power which was demonstrated in Christ when he raised him from the dead.

A   >   Attitude

Philippians 4:13 I have the strength to face all conditions by the power that Christ gives me.

S   >   Success

1 Corinthians 15:57 But thanks be to God, who keeps giving us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ!

  >   Transformation

 2 Corinthians 3:18 All of us, all the time, we are being transformed to look like Jesus, with more and more of His shining-greatness. This change is from the Lord Who is the Spirit.

E   >   Excellence

1 Peter 1:3-4 His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence.

R   >   Rejoicing

Psalm 30:5 At night we may cry, but when morning comes we will celebrate.

Please join me as we explore the impact of Easter for the present day journey with Jesus!

[1] John 3:16 (CEV)

[2] 1 Peter 1:3 (NCV)

Christ and creation—Christ and cosmology

God created everything through Jesus.  (John 1:3)

Christ is the power of God.  (1 Corinthians 1:24)

The creation narrative meets science in the field of cosmology: “Modern cosmology aims to develop the most complete and economical understanding of the Universe that is consistent with observations elucidated by natural forces. Cosmology has exploded in the last 20 years with radically new information about the structure, origin and evolution of the Universe obtained through recent technological advances in telescopes and space observatories” (University of Oregon).

Here’s a brief history. Beginning with the ancient Greeks, scientists/philosophers up to the 20th century believed that the universe was static, fixed, immutable and eternal (no beginning or ending). However, in 1917, Einstein indicated that the static model was untenable. According to his Theory of General Relativity the universe was either contracting or expanding. In the 1920s two scientists working with Einstein’s equations, mathematically proved that the universe must be expanding. In 1929 Edwin Hubble, an American astronomer working at the Mount Wilson Observatory, actually observed evidence that indeed the universe is expanding. Hubble’s discovery was called, by William Lane Craig, “a veritable turning point in the history of science”, and is now universally accepted as fact.

balloonsILLUSTRATION—Over 12 minutes slowly inflate a balloon to a 12” diameter. Now, let’s say a person began to observe you in the 8 minute range. Based upon common sense, the observer could rightly conclude that before he arrived the balloon was somewhat smaller in size. And, if one continues backwards in time, the balloon gets smaller and smaller and smaller until ……..?

bbMost scientists now believe that we live in a finite expanding universe which has not existed forever, and that space, time, energy and matter all came into being at an infinitely dense, infinitely hot gravitational singularity, and began expanding everywhere at once. This is called ‘The Big Bang Theory’ which attempts to explain how the universe developed from a very tiny, dense state (singularity)” (University of Oregon). Note the agreement between this statement and the creation narrative: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”

  1. There was a beginning! The cosmos is NOT eternal!
  2. Though beyond our ability to comprehend, the cosmos is nonetheless finite!
  3. At the beginning space, time, matter and energy came into being together.

However, note this dissimilarity! “The universe developed from a very tiny, dense state (singularity).” Common sense asks: “From where did this singularity come? Most cosmologists answer: “hocus pocus”! On the other hand Scripture simply asserts: “In the beginning God created…” (Genesis 1:1). Furthermore, the supposed Big Bang is a Person: “In the beginning was the Word and the Word was God. Through Him all things were made” (John 1:1-3). When “God spoke: ‘Light!’ and light appeared,” that powerful Word was none other than Christ, “the power of God.”

Part 2 of my “Christ and creation” series is coming next week. Please stay tuned, or even better: subscribe to my blog and receive these posts via email as soon as they are published.