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Posted by Paul Edwards (Fr. Paul) on Jun 12, 2014 | Comments (0)


Second Sunday after Pentecost

Click here to go to the Bottom Line Meditations for the Second Sunday after Pentecost

Godly Abiding Spiritually in Jesus Changes the Meaning of What we See Worldly When Not Abiding in Jesus.

Spirituality is our innate ability to feel the difference worldly or godly thinking makes to the way scripture translates to our daily life and relationships.

All Scripture is a testimony to Jesus Christ, who is the Word of God. He is the complete revelation of God’s will of grace for salvation. Grace is the only unfailing rule of faith and practice for the Christian life.

The Gospel of grace is: rather than trying to be more faithful to become faithful, we become faithful by feeling the Faith God already has for and in us.

The Strength of Christianity is Grace

John 1:14 “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.”

Another name for Jesus is "Grace". Another name for God is "Grace". We are saved by GRACE. "Love" is not Love if it is not grace. This is true for "Faith", "Hope", "Joy" and all other theological words of significance in the scripture.

Until someone experiences the grace gift in their lives, all other theological words have no real meaning. Why not begin to use the word "grace" in place of "Jesus", "God", "the Spirit", "Love" and so on? It might seem inappropriate to do so. However, until it is actually experienced it will make no sense at all.

That is what this year is all about. Grace, did you get it?

 

In His grace we don’t have to try harder.  We have a spiritual immune system of Peace where stress cannot abide.

Pray this prayer from the Collect for this Sunday:

”Grant, O Lord, that the course of this world may be peaceably governed by your providence; and that your Church may joyfully serve you in confidence and serenity.”

Now quietly move into God's Presence and pray the prayer again:

“Grant, O Lord, that the course of this world may be peaceably governed by your providence; and that your Church may joyfully serve you in confidence and serenity.”

Did you feel the difference?

 

Matthew 10:24-39 “Do not think that I came to bring peace on Earth; I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.”

The Sword of the Spirit

Literally, we must read the scripture to understand the meaning. Spiritually, we must understand the meaning before we read the scripture. If we do not understand the dual meaning, we will not understand the Gospel of Jesus as the Word of God.

This scripture is a good example of how to understand the difference between the two ways of reading The Words. To be rationally out of His grace Presence our attention is directed to two words, “Peace” and “The Sword.”

The belief in a messiah and a messianic age is deeply rooted in Jewish tradition. Peace is what the Messiah’s coming was all about. The most basic reason for the Jewish denial of the messianic claims made on Jesus' behalf is that He did not usher in world peace. There are a few things however that must be done before the Peace could come. The Jewish position on the Messiah affirms at least five things about the Messiah.

He will:

  1. Be a descendant of King David. DONE
    The rest He did not do.
  2. He must gain sovereignty over the land of Israel.
  3. Gather the Jews there from the four corners of the earth.
  4. Restore them to full observance of Torah law,
  5. As a grand finale, bring peace to the whole world.

Then there was the issue of the sword. The problem was He brought less peace than there was before. “I came to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and a man's enemies will be the members of his household.”

What to do with this?

To read the scripture spiritually one already knows the spiritual principles. The emphasis is not on the Sword or the Peace. It is on “Think.” Do not “think” I am here to bring peace in the world. Spiritually we know when we are out of the Presence our thoughts create our feelings. We depend on things being peaceful so we can find our peace. If they’re not peaceful, conflict between ourselves and others create our stress, anger and hurt. There is no peace.

The sword creates a division not between people but between persons. St Paul calls it the “sword of the Spirit.” The sword is the Word of God which is Jesus. Ephesians 6:17  For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword…no creature is hidden from His sight. Hebrews 4:12-13

The division the sword symbolizes is between being in or out of the Presence. When we are in the Peace of God the feeling of His Peace creates thoughts of Peace in any time, at any place and under any circumstances. Jesus can bring Peace on earth, but it must start with the Peace Makers first being in the Presence of His Peace.

When we are in His Presence we do not depend on any one for our Peace. We do not depend on loving others so they will love us. We do not depend on our father or mother more than Jesus or our son or our daughter more than Jesus for our Life. When we open ourselves to His grace we take up our cross and our old self is crucified. “My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me” Galatians 2:20 “He who holds on to his old life will lose it, and he who has lost his old life for My sake will find it”. Matthew 10:34–39

The Sword of the Spirit makes the division between our old life and our New Life. In the old life we are Human Beings on a Spiritual Journey. Our journey determines on how we feel about what we think. In our new life we are Spiritual Beings on a Human Journey. Our spiritual feelings determine how we think about our journey. 

We all have the sword of the Spirit. It is right here on our side and in the sheath of our heart. We need to be willing to draw it out in difficult times. It makes a difference knowing whether our sword is drawn or still in the sheath. 

“Almighty and everlasting God, keep us steadfast in this faith and worship, and bring us at last to see you in your one and eternal glory.”

Did you get the grace?


THE DISCIPLE-SHIFT: The Virtual Small Group: Members share once a week with their group through the internet when a shift from being out to being in the Presence made a difference.


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