Faith

Transition States – Leaving My ‘Old time Religion’ and Learning to Walk in Grace.


New Creation

Transition States

“Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.”  Ezekiel 36:26 NASB

DEFINITIONS:

Masoretic Text of Ezekiel 36:26

וְנָתַתִּ֤י לָכֶם֙ לֵ֣ב חָדָ֔שׁ וְר֥וּחַ חֲדָשָׁ֖ה אֶתֵּ֣ן בְּקִרְבְּכֶ֑ם וַהֲסִ֨רֹתִ֜י אֶת־לֵ֤ב הָאֶ֨בֶן֙ מִבְּשַׂרְכֶ֔ם וְנָתַתִּ֥י לָכֶ֖ם לֵ֥ב בָּשָֽׂר׃

Reverse Interlinear

“Moreover, I will give” – nathan – gift (A form of the word GRACE.)  – to give, bestow, grant, permit, ascribe, employ, devote, consecrate, dedicate, pay wages, sell, exchange, lend, commit, entrust, give over, deliver up, yield produce, occasion, produce, requite to, report, mention, utter, stretch out, extend

“You a new” – chadash – new, new thing, fresh

“heart” – leb – Outline of Biblical Usage

  1. inner man, mind, will, heart, understanding

    1. inner part, midst
      1. midst (of things)
      2. heart (of man)
      3. soul, heart (of man)
      4. mind, knowledge, thinking, reflection, memory
      5. inclination, resolution, determination (of will)

      6. conscience
      7. heart (of moral character)
      8. as seat of appetites

      9. as seat of emotions and passions

      10. as seat of courage

“spirit” – ruwach – 

  1. wind, breath, mind, spirit

    1. Spirit of God, the third person of the triune God, the Holy Spirit, coequal, coeternal with the Father and the Son
      1. as inspiring ecstatic state of prophecy
      2. as impelling prophet to utter instruction or warning
      3. imparting warlike energy and executive and administrative power
      4. as endowing men with various gifts
      5. as energy of life
      6. as manifest in the Shekinah glory

      7. never referred to as a depersonalised force

“within” quereb – midst, among, inner part, middle

  1. inward part

    1. physical sense

    2. as seat of thought and emotion

    3. as faculty of thought and emotion

“and I will remove” – cuwr – (Pronounced ‘suwr’) –

  1. to turn aside, depart

    1. (Qal)

      1. to turn aside, turn in unto
      2. to depart, depart from way, avoid

      3. to be removed

      4. to come to an end

    2. (Polel) to turn aside

    3. (Hiphil)
      1. to cause to turn aside, cause to depart, remove, take away, put away, depose
      2. to put aside, leave undone, retract, reject, abolish
    4. (Hophal) to be taken away, be removed

 

“stone” – ‘eben – perverse, hard heart

“flesh” – basar –

  1. flesh

    1. of the body
      1. of humans
      2. of animals
    2. the body itself

    3. male organ of generation (euphemism)
    4. kindred, blood-relations
    5. flesh as frail or erring (man against God)

    6. all living things

    7. animals
    8. mankind

English (NASB)   [?] Strong’s Root Form (Hebrew)

“Moreover, I will give

h5414 נָתַן nathan

you a new

h2319 חָדָשׁ chadash
heart h3820 לֵב leb
and put h5414 נָתַן nathan
a new h2319 חָדָשׁ chadash
spirit h7307 רוּחַ ruwach

within

h7130 קֶרֶב qereb
you; and I will remove h5493 סוּר cuwr
the heart h3820 לֵב leb

of stone

h68 אֶבֶן ‘eben
from your flesh h1320 בָּשָׂר basar

and give

h5414 נָתַן nathan

you a heart

h3820 לֵב leb
of flesh. h1320 בָּשָׂר basar

36:26  καὶ δώσω ὑμῖν καρδίαν καινὴν καὶ πνεῦμα καινὸν δώσω ἐν ὑμῖν καὶ ἀφελῶ τὴν καρδίαν τὴν λιθίνην ἐκ τῆς σαρκὸς ὑμῶν καὶ δώσω ὑμῖν καρδίαν σαρκίνην

Thank you for dredging through all those definitions.  It may be a stretch to prove a point, but I wanted to make sure the point was understood based on what the bible is actually saying.  BASICALLY this verse is saying that GOD will take away my mind, will, heart, understanding, and place inside me HIS mind, will, heart, understanding, and remove my dead spirit and replace it with HIS living and holy spirit.

I have been going through radical changes in my thinking (To change your thinking,  means to repent, and to repent is to change your thinking).

Here is what happened: I prayed.

I prayed that God remove from me every thing that stands between me and Him.  I confessed I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of the Living God, and that Christ died on the cross for my sin (He BECAME all sin, and God judged HIM for being sin, and He died).  Then He, being sin, was cast into hell.  But while He was there, He was brought back to life in the transfigured form that the apostles saw on the streets three days later.  He did all this so that I would not have to die.  He did this so all law and prophecy will be fulfilled.  He did this so that, instead of we humans souls having to suffer the complete wrath of God, we inherited eternal life instead.  I prayed that God remove anything and everything that stands between me and Him.

If you have been reading my poor blog, you know what happened.  If not, the reader’s digest version is that God answered my prayer.  Everything that could be removed from me was removed from me.  What I have left is a loving wife, a beautiful family, and the presence of God.  Oh, and we were able to keep our clothes and our car and our cats.

I digress, though.  I prayed.  My hearts desire is to know Christ and be like Him.  In the above verse, we learn many things.  We learn that it is NOT our selves that does the work.  It is God that does all the work.  My efforts not only get in the way, but prohibit God from working in me.  I know this is true because I have tried all my life to understand what it means to be like Christ.

This is where, recently, I found the difference between “Theology” and “Religious Dogma”.  Theology is simply “The knowledge of God”.  “Religious Dogma” is self explanatory, but I will expound on it as we go.

Albert Einstein once said, “I want to know God’s thoughts; the rest are details.”  That is where I stand.  That is basically where I have always stood.  I was raised in a very traditional, large, protestant religion.  Where this religion’s dogma aligned with the doctrines of God, we were taught the doctrines of God.  Where they differed, we were taught a very skewed religious bias, a dogma that placed more importance on our religion and our religious movement than on the will of the Living God through Christ Jesus.  We were basically renting the parts of scripture that suited us, and changed the understanding of the rest.   This kind of dogma replaces a genuine understanding of the Living God, via the work of the Holy Spirit, and replaces it with man’s interpretation of God and His role in the Universe, Life, and our selves.

But the promise of God is that HE will do this work, and HE will replace my corrupted thoughts with HIS thoughts, His will, HIS understanding of things, His Spirit will be my new life as I was dead in my spirit.

“And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest. But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.”  Ephesians 2:1-10 NASB

God took out all my dead junk and replaced it with HIS life.  Literally.  His name is Jesus.

But religious dogma taught me a knowledge ABOUT God, based on evaluations derived from external observation…a what you see is the sum of the knowledge of God.  It emphasized imitating Christ by MY strength, and not resting in the Lord.

Theology, real theology, describes, instead, an intimate knowledge of God.  It is based on a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.  The intimacy is more profound than the intimacy between lovers.    It is attained only when you have accepted the free gift of Salvation brought by the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

The religious dogma I was taught was simply a mental knowledge of the scriptures.  It was a cerebral understanding of what Christ accomplished through His life, Death and Resurrection.  To reinforce all this knowledge, we studied, in depth, the writings of the Church Leaders (By that I mean, mostly the leaders of our religion, and, where they applied, the writings of all the commentaries and letters of all the historical Church Leaders.)  If there was a commentary that did not quite line up with our dogma, it was either ignored or explained away.  It is called “rationalizing”.

God never said we are to rationalize our faith.  He asked us to come and reason with Him.  HE will make us clean.  He will do all the work.  He and He alone can accomplish in us all the works that He promised.

All the self-inflicted rules and dogma of my former religion were emphasized in the light of the idea that WE must do all WE can to be like Christ.  We were taught many amazing things that remained in our heads, but never reached our hearts.  This Head Knowledge is a walk that relies on self-enforced rules.  This affliction is the religious dogma that has turned every person on earth away from Christ.  It has proven over time that all it does is  condemn you, and try to force you to behave in a way that is not in your nature.  It disregards the fact that our flesh (Heart, Mind, Soul, Will) is at war with God.  It is a self reliance that works only for a little while until we fatigue of doing something that is not in us to do in the first place.

In the opening verse, we see that these changes can only be done by God, according to His will, through His spirit.  This is done when we accept Christ as our Lord and Savior.

“Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.” II Corinthians 5:17 NASB

When we rest in the completed work of Christ, we are no longer guilty.  We are no longer in sin.  We are no longer in rebellion against God.  We are NEW creatures.  And the changes that are made start from the inside, not the outside.  They are a vine that, as we grow in Christ Likeness, produce the fruit of the spirit.

Where religious dogma emphasizes a memorized set of rules that force you to rely on yourself to fulfill, the Knowledge of God, through a changed mind, heart, and spirit in Christ, emphasizes the work of God in you through the Holy Spirit.  You receive as a gift the Mind of Christ.  You receive as a gift the will of God.  You receive as a gift the total forgiveness of all your sin.  This fruit of the Spirit will eventually manifest itself outwardly as you make the transition inwardly.

I am writing about this now because I am in that transition state.  I am leaving a dead life of works based faith behind, and am transitioning into a life of faith based walk in Christ.  The biggest difference, besides the change of heart, the change of attitude, the change in the way you view the world, is, you no longer walk in sin and rebellion, and it becomes effortless as you begin to rest in the completed work of Christ.  You can still sin, but the more of the Mind of Christ you allow the Spirit of God to reveal to you, the less you will want to sin.

I no longer have to try, by my own strength, to be like Christ.  Christ is transitioning me from where I was to where He wants me to be.

This does not make God’s Grace a license to sin, but the freedom from the sin nature.  All I have to do is accept, in my heart, what the Word of God says about the accomplished work of Christ.  Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

So, I hope this tome will encourage you to change your mind about the knowledge of God.  Your religious dogma will not get you very far.  It only makes sin more exciting than knowing God.  Even Atheists have a religious dogma and a religious fervor.

I will write more on the details of Grace that brought about this transition.  It is difficult, only in the respect that I have to overcome a lot of my old thinking and believing patterns, and accept the thoughts of Christ.  Faith becomes reality.  No matter what you think about, that is what you become and receive,  It is a universal principle.  Faith in Christ will bring you a new life far beyond anything you ever imagined.  I know this because this is what is happening to me.

I am in the transition state that exists between my religious dogma, and my new walk in Christ.

Care to join me?

Let’s be about it.

David G. Perkins

sammy.snardfarkle@gmail.com

 

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Faith

Go Ye Therefore….


This is not a plea for a job, OK?  This is just me…I don’t know, getting things off my chest.

I heard another ‘No’ today on yet another job application.  It get’s frustrating.  I have gotten so discouraged.  Here I am, intelligent, capable, WILLING, and not too proud to work.  It seems that, when you are dismissed from a Military base, you pretty much are dismissed from a great many opportunities.  I make no excuses.  I was rightfully dismissed.  Besides, the whole story would get more than me in trouble, so I am content to be in this position.

In my frustration, I decided to go for a walk.  That didn’t help.  I got home,.  I was still  grumpy, because taking a walk didn’t help.  Besides, my conscience was bothering me.  I am learning how to write.  How to blog, how to journal, etc.  They only writing I had ever done in my life was poetry, and seminary papers.  And that, my friend was a very long time ago.

The day I got fired from the base, I felt disoriented.  This is all I had been doing for the last two years.  And this work was good, and I am good at it.  As you surely know, by now, I have recently returned to the Lord.  So, I prayed.  I prayed HARD.  What was I going to tell my wife…my daughter?  Why was this happening?  I had worked hard for my credentials.  Now they were worthless.

As I prayed, I felt a strong sense of calm overcome me.  That kept me from going into a panic.  I slowed the car down (It is a 2 hour commute from the Base to Home).  I didn’t realize I had been speeding.

By time I slowed the car down, I was actually so calm, I could actually smile.  (That, in itself was rare for me).  You hear about those “Charismatic Weirdo’s” who say they heard from God.  I always rolled my eyes at that.  I had to take all that eye rolling back.  I mean, really, when you roll your eyes at God, HE could very well roll them right back at you, and you wouldn’t enjoy it.

I heard from God.  I didn’t take the time to make sure I was not becoming a “Charismatic Weirdo”, or anything like that.  I mean, I was really busy HEARING from God.  It was the most wonderful, calming experience I had ever had.

He asked me what I’d rather do.  I told Him, “You Know, O Lord!”

Sound familiar?  What was that that Ezekiel said to God when God asked Zeke, ‘Do you think I can take these bones and bring them back to life?”  or some thing like that.  And Ezekiel, being the courageous one of God, said, “God Knows!”.  He was hedging His bet.  It wasn’t that Ezekiel DIDN’T think God couldn’t raise the bones in the desert back to life, it was just that, well, what if it is a trick question?  Zeke knew God was testing him.  But Zeke wasn’t sure he had studied hard enough for the test.  So he said, “Thou knowest, O Lord” or something like that.  Turns out, God raised the bones and made a legion of soldiers.  That be a LOT of soldiers.  Zeke suddenly realized the point.  God can do what ever he pleases.  And it pleases God to have Ezekiel serve Him. Where I come from, that is called a HUGE object lesson.

So, when God asked ME, “What would you rather do, Dave?”  and I said “Thou Knowest, O Lord”, I swear I could see him glare at me like my third grade teacher did when I hit her with a huge spit wad.  (I got out of a beating by telling her I just wanted to get her attention so I could tell her she was beautiful…I am going to burn in HELL, I KNOW!)

It was a cop out.  I wasn’t used to the Almighty riding along in my car, and asking me questions, OK?!?

But I did get a chance to stop and think.  Thank God God is merciful and abundant in Grace, too.  I figured I was going to be the worlds largest Chicken Wing, or something like that.

I listed off several things.  I used to play French Horn.  But He said, you can practice at home, but no.  Well, I used to play piano.  Same answer.  We went like this for about 60 miles.  I gotta say, God is also very patient.  My nick name isn’t Jack Ass for nothing, you know…go ask my ex wife and my curent wife.  I got tired of playing this game.  And I asked God to just tell me what it is HE wants me to do, and I will do it.

He asked me if I still had that old fire in the belly for writing.  I looked askance at the empty passengers seat, and said, “You’re kidding, RIGHT?”  I am sure that is why the trucker that saw me do this sped way the heck up.  What would YOU think?

He said, “David, you want to serve me?”  I said “Thou Knowest, O Lord!”, but then repented and said very affirmatively, “I’d rather serve you than be the richest man on the planet”, or something like that.  There were a string of affirmations going on at the time.  I mean, I hadn’t even acknowledges there is a God for 20 YEARS.  And I really wanted to return to God’s fold, and serve.  There is nothing better in this life than serving God.

He told me to write.  Every day.  Put it in a blog.  You can only imagine what I thought about that.  I have read my writing, it bored hell out of me.  So, I was wondering if boring hell out of people was His way of getting people to run toward the scriptures, which are infinitely less boring than my writing.  (Believe me, on this, I have read the Bible too).

He told me that, while HE finds the right place for me to work, I need to keep myself busy writing.  He said he plans on using that gift as it develops.  I asked min if he had ever looked at my writer’s portfolio?  He looked askance at me…well, at least the empty passenger seat looked askance at me.

He said he would let me know what to write, and when.  I have to say, that so far, he has done just that.

My last two blogs concerned Who Is The Church.  I told God, Look, I can’t just go around shooting my mouth off like that, and not walk it, too!!!  he let me know He will take care of that, but for now, keep writing.

Here’s the deal.  I am not trying to be some great writer of great expose.  I am just doing what I have been told.  My hearts desire is, yes, to be good at writing, and writing about the things of God.  And my burning desire is to be part of the next revival that needs to break out over the land.  This planet is using the biggest steam shovel it can just to dig a hole to Hell.

I thought about what Jesus said to the Disciples just as He was about to ascent back into Heaven.

And Jesus came up to them and spoke to them, saying, ‘All authority has been given unto Me in Heaven and on earth.  Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Matt. 28:18-20

And that is my hearts desire.  To obey.  But I know that God is right.  I have been away for 20 years, and there is a trust issue.  If I am faithful in this little thing of writing every day, He will be faithful to bless me for obeying.

I have been given a commission.  You have also been given a commission.  You do not need anyone’s permission to obey.  Trust me when I tell you, your family will think you are crazy.  Especially when you tell them that you had a chat with the Almighty.  Take Jesus, for an example.  Here he was, running around Israel, raising people from the dead, healing the sick, and telling everyone, “If you have seen me, you have seen the Father.”  And his very own family told people Jesus was crazy.  That is your Bible Drill for the day.  Find where that is written in the Gospels).

Until the day God calls me to higher things, I will obey.  Even when I don’t feel like obeying, like today.  I was discouraged.  I didn’t even know what I was going to write about.  But as I got to the library, God showed me what to say.

Just imagine what He has to say to you, if you’ll listen.

The world is dying, out there.  Let’s be about it.

I love you.

David G. Perkins

 

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