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::Way to Inner Peace::

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  • Truth
    replied
    Have you ever been really misunderstood? I mean, like impure motives slapped on you, and no way to disprove them? Circumstances that are too complex, with too many players, and it doesn't matter what you do or say, people look suspiciously at you?
    Then you go along to church, and some preacher goes on about Gods blessing if only we follow His word - you sit there seething in the middle of your misunderstanding .... and you wonder how realistic those words are.
    This is a story of Mephibosheth, a character in the Old Testament, (or Hebrew Bible if you are chic and Religiously Rebellious) whose life of ups and downs was driven by circumstance, chance, luck and misunderstandings. I think God placed the story there as one of many showing His empathy for our circumstances. At least those of us who have been through such experiences
    Here is the story in a nutshell if you can't recall. Mephibosheth is a tough name to type in all the time, so we will nickname him Mephy.
    1. Mephy is born to Jonathan in the dying days of his father Sauls kingdom.
    2. Sauls kingdom falls, and the nurse runs off in a panic with five year old Mephy, dropping him and crippling him for life.
    3. Poor young blighter - time and chance one
    4. Years later, King David inquires whether his friend Jonathan had any offspring and Mephy is re-discovered living in the boonies. Mephy is brought to David in fear and trembling.
    5. David restores all his families former properties to this last remaining son, and promotes him to a life of wealth in Jerusalem.
    6. Lucky blighter - time and chance two
    7. Years later King David is temporarily driven from Jerusalem by his errant son Absalom.
    8. Mephy is not found among those fleeing with David, but his servant Ziba is. Ziba tells David Mephy thought he would be pronounced King in Davids place, so he stayed in Jerusalem.
    9. David is somewhat put out, and promises Mephys lands to Ziba.
    10. After Absaloms rebellion, David returns and is met by Mephy, coming out of the city despite his crippled state, and not having washed since the day David left - (an ancient and hard to understand strategy to show how sorry you are)
    11. David quizzes him and Mephy says Ziba left him behind, and lied to David.
    12. David brushes away the issue and tells them they can have half the land each.
    13. Poor blighter? Cunning blighter? Lucky blighter? Lying sod? - time and chance three
    If you type 'Mephibosheth' into a search engine, you will read every type of interpretation imaginable about this character. But you will not find any references to time and chance happening to him. It seems the major lesson to me though. Simply put, Mephy goes through three phases;
    1. Unfortunate.
    2. Very fortunate
    3. Under the shadow of suspicion
    His tale is the story for most of us, at some stage in our lives, even if we won't hear it from the pulpits. Circumstances outside his control cripple him, send him to the back of beyond, restore him to favour, and then we are left wondering whether he was crooked, or simply wronged. The Bible doesn't even tell us the answer. It is left hanging.
    Like it is for us. You and me. Events strike us, good luck, bad luck, and imputed motives.
    Well, you say, that's not very encouraging. Give me a story with hope and blessing in it.
    We all want to be justified, to appear well in the eyes of others. Why is this so? I could give you a good answer, but I won't. I think mostly our drive for self respect is ego driven. And if you choose to follow Christ, then you will be knocked around.
    You will have bad motives imputed to you, and no chance to redress them, to give the truthful state of affairs. Your ego and reputation will take a belting.
    The real point is, how do you cope with such things happening to you, John and Jane Average?
    Uh oh, I nearly gave some advice away. It's even tempting to provide an opinion, an answer, or some guidance. Some deep insights into how one should cope with the vicissitudes, the slings and arrows of Shakespeares' outrageous fortune.

    Leave a comment:


  • Truth
    replied
    We all want to be justified, to appear well in the eyes of others. Why is this so? I could give you a good answer, but I won't. I think mostly our drive for self respect is ego driven. And if you choose to follow Christ, then you will be knocked around.

    You will have bad motives imputed to you, and no chance to redress them, to give the truthful state of affairs. Your ego and reputation will take a belting.

    The real point is, how do you cope with such things happening to you, John and Jane Average?

    Uh oh, I nearly gave some advice away. It's even tempting to provide an opinion, an answer, or some guidance. Some deep insights into how one should cope with the vicissitudes, the slings and arrows of Shakespeares' outrageous fortune.

    Leave a comment:


  • For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge
    replied
    Okay, we all F-ucking read what you have to say m-oron now move on to the forums I referred you to in the previous thread.
    Have a great F-ucking day A-ssf-uck!

    Leave a comment:


  • Truth
    replied
    HATE & ANGER WILL MAKE YOU A SLAVE !

    While visiting a park, Dale Carnegie observed a grizzly bear eating with a skunk. The grizzly allowed no other animal to eat with him. Although he resented the skunk, the bear would not pick a fight with him. He had no doubt learned the high cost of getting even.

    Jesus Christ gave us a very valuable lesson when He said, "If someone sues you for your jacket, give him your coat also. If he compels you to walk one mile, go with him two". (Matt. 5:41)
    It's not always worth a battle to gain our so-called rights. We must determine if the issue is important enough to risk our peace of mind, health and general well-being. It's possible to win a battle and lose the war! There are times it is far better to walk away from a fight, even if it means we have to eat humble pie.
    Jesus also said, "Love your enemies, pray for those who despitefully use you and persecute you". (Matt. 5:44) The law of Moses was more rigid, "An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth". (Ex. 21:24)
    Sometimes it is far better, however, to walk the extra mile, turn the other cheek, or give away a jacket or overcoat, than to end up with a bad case of nerves, ulcers or sleepless nights!

    LOVE IS THE SOLUTION TO MANY ILLS

    In the past, some have criticized the advice that Jesus Christ gave about loving our enemies as impractical and unrealistic, but psychiatrists are now recommending it as a solution for many ills!

    The Ayatolleh Khoemeni was wrong when he said: "Like Moses, Jesus the Blessed would have picked up a sword, had He lived longer." Our Lord Jesus said: "...for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword." (Matt.26:52)
    Napoleon Bonaparte correctly stated: "I see in Lycurgus, Numa, and Muhammed only legislators who, having the first rank in the state, have sought the best solution of the social problem, but I see nothing there which reveals divinity...
    "You speak of Caesar, of Alexander, of their conquests, and of the enthusiasm they enkindled in the hearts of their soldiers; but can you conceive of a dead man making conquests with an army faithful and entirely devoted to his memory? My armies have forgotten me, even while living, as the Carthaginian army forgot Hannibal. Such is our power!
    "Alexander, Caesar, Charlemagne, and myself founded empires. But on what did we rest the creations of our genius? Upon force! Jesus Christ alone founded His Empire upon love; and, at this hour, millions of men would die for Him."
    St. Paul stated: "Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink...Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good." (Rom.12: 20-21) The Holy Spirit taught him the real values of life! He was a self-righteous Pharisee who thought he was doing God's will by imprisoning and killing Christians. Then he met Jesus on the Damascus Road. He was converted and received a new spirit and world - view!
    Booker T. Washington, a black American who became famous in spite of prejudices against his colour and who was insulted on numerous occasions, wrote, "I will not let any man reduce my soul to the level of hatred".
    The famous physiologist Dr. John Hunter, knew what anger could do to his heart. "The first scoundrel that gets me angry will kill me", he stated.
    Sometime later, at a medical meeting, a co-worker made assertions that incensed Hunter. As he stood up and bitterly attacked the speaker, his anger caused such a contraction of the blood vessels in his heart that he fell dead!

    In his book, ˜None of These Diseases' Dr. S.I. McMillen relates numerous accounts like the above, which prove that powerful negative emotions can make you sick and even cause death!
    HATRED HOLDS YOU CAPTIVE!

    According to medical researchers, verbal expressions of animosity toward others call forth certain hormones from the pituitary, adrenal, thyroid and other glands, an excess of which can cause disease in any part of the body.

    Says McMillen, "The minute you begin hating someone, you become his slave. Hatred holds you captive and robs you of peace of mind, and your time is spent recounting unpleasant situations. Your enemy consumes your every waking moment and hatred holds your mind hostage."
    You are tormented by the demons of hatred, jealousy and envy. Your only desire is for revenge. It isn't worth it; let it go! Release the hatred, bitterness and resentment, and the healing powers within you will begin to function.

    King Solomon stated, that it is better to be served a dish of vegetables with love, than to have the best beef served with hatred. (Prov. 15:17)

    Internationally known psychiatrist, Alfred Adler, wrote, "The most important task imposed by religion has always been, ˜Love Thy Neighbour'. It is the individual who is not interested in his fellowman, who has the greatest difficulties in life and provides the greatest injury to others. It is from such individuals that all human failures spring".
    RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN SIN & SICKNESS!

    Shakespeare saw the relationship between sin and disease. It was the memory of Duncan's murder that produced psychosomatic overtones in Lady MacBeth. When MacBeth asked the physician about her illness, he replied:
    "Not so sick, my Lord. As she is troubled with thick coming fancies that keep her from rest." Then the doctor asked:
    "Canst thou not minister to mind diseas'd, Pluck from the memory a rooted sorrow,
    Raze out the written troubles of the brain,
    And with some sweet oblivious antidote
    Cleanse the stuff'd bosom of that perilous stuff
    Which weights upon the heart?"
    A French proverb says, "There is no pillow as soft as a clear conscience". And psychologist Henry C. Link stated, "The emphasis on sin has largely disappeared from the teaching of religion...at the very time when psychology has discovered its importance and extended its meanings".
    The Bible says: "But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sins. If we confess our sins (to God) He is faithful and just to forgive our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." (1 John 1: 7-9) What an opportunity to be forgiven and healed at the same time!
    Let us take a lesson from the grizzly bear and learn to avoid strife wherever possible! In a complex world, we must learn to co-exist, remembering the Scripture that says, "If it possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men". (Rom. 12:18)
    In my opinion, Dr. S.I. McMillen's book is one of the greatest ever written, by a physician who - like Dr. David Livingstone - spent years on the Mission field ministering to the many needs of the poor and neglected masses there!

    @

    Are you sure you've never hurt anyone? Have you considered the things you speak to others? Jesus warns in Matthew 5:21-22 that even being unjustly angry with someone puts you in danger of judgment. Also, how many people have you hurt because of things you failed to do?

    ::Forgiveness::

    The Bible speaks about every person needing forgiveness and every person needing to forgive. Why? Because we are all sinners in need of God's forgiveness. None of us is perfect. We need God's grace and we need to extend that same mercy to others. This subject is the very essence of true Christianity. Until we understand it, we will not really understand God Himself.

    Likely, if you are reading this page, you want to receive God's forgiveness, and you want to forgive. You want your slate to be clean. The problem is how? If we do not receive this grace from God, and extend it to others, the Scriptures make it clear that we will die in our sins. God has made forgiveness so important, that all our happiness and fulfillment depend on it--in this life and in the next.

    He knew that all of us, without exception will be wronged. Furthermore, all of us will treat others wrongly. All of us will sin against God and others. These sins block and hinder our relationship with Him. Jesus spoke more of forgiveness than possibly any other topic. This is a lesson we must learn on deeper and deeper levels until the very core of our being is changed into Love.

    There is no life apart from God's love. Therefore, there is no life apart from forgiveness, for forgiveness is the seal, the mark, and the proof of Love. If we say we have love and cannot walk in forgiveness, we deceive ourselves, and our "love" is only a parody of the real thing.

    We All Need Forgiveness

    The psychologist, Freud, accurately determined that the main source of all humanity's woes are feelings of guilt. He came to this profound truth, but didn't know what to do with it. Today, we are encouraged by pop psychologists to "feel good about ourselves," and to do away with the troubling guilt that we all have. The Bible teaches the opposite. It says we must face our sin and deal with it--and only then can we have the peace that the world craves so badly. It can be a frightening and painful thing to face our sin, yet we will never receive healing unless we do. Our guilt will continue to torment us and wreak havoc on our lives until we receive forgiveness for our sins. The key is not to ignore our guilt or try to gloss over it, but to face it and seek God for forgiveness, through the blood of Jesus.

    When Jesus died on the cross, He took our punishment upon Himself. He took the guilt of our sins and bore them in our place. He received all the emotional pain of the abuse, betrayal, injustice, and scorn that we ourselves have given and received. In a prophetic portrait of the future Christ, Isaiah wrote, "But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed" Isaiah 53:5.

    In Hebrews 9:22, it says, "In fact, under the Law, almost everything is purified by means of blood, and without the shedding of blood, there is neither release from sin and its guilt nor the remission of the due and merited punishment for sins" (Amplified Bible, emphasis mine).

    The weight of sin is so great that only shed blood can atone for it. We treat it so lightly, yet all the world is reeling and stunted and dying under the consequences of it. In the days of the Old Covenant (before Jesus came), God made laws requiring specific animals to be sacrificed to atone for certain sins. The one who committed the sin, was to slay the animal himself. We look at the Old Testament and wonder why God would be so strict, so seemingly cruel, and so specific. In confusion, many of us have said "Well, that is how God was back then..." and we try to put it out of our heads. There is something we must understand about God though. He does not change. He is the same yesterday, today and forever. What He hated 2,000 years ago He hates today, and will hate 2,000 years from now. He hates what destroys His creation, and He will be merciless against all forms of sin and injustice until every last bit is purged from us. (Please note that He is merciless with the sin, but not the repentant sinner!!)

    Sin has destroyed this planet far more than even the most perceptive of us can realize. Only by shedding blood can we understand the extreme consequences of the price of sin. The shedding of blood is a vivid illustration that all sin will end in death. God, in His mercy, has allowed us to see and receive a small portion of the consequences of our sin in this lifetime, so we can change while we still have the opportunity to do so. After we die it will be to late.

    When we see that the price that we must each pay for our sins is lifeblood of something or someone-- and that there is no way around it--the dept must be paid, only then we begin to have a true appreciation of what happened on the Cross.

    If we do not understand the Cross, we can never receive absolution from the guilt that eats away at us. The Cross is essential for us to have new life. It is our only path to freedom.

    Walking In The Joy Of A Clean Conscience

    Up to this point, you may be feeling less optimistic than you did when you started this article. If you are, it is a good sign. Believe it or not, you are closer to freedom than you have ever been! As we stated earlier, to be free from any problem, we must first recognize that we have one. Sometimes this is the hardest part. Recognizing and dealing with our sin is the only way to overcome the consequences of it. Are you ready for the good news now?

    You can know beyond a shadow of a doubt that if you were to die tonight, you could stand before your Creator with a clean conscience. You don't have to rely on hopeful wishes or vague optimism. You can be washed clean and fragrant and sparkling. You don't have to hide from the guilty feelings that oppress you deep inside. You don't have to mete out penance for yourself to ease your conscience. You don't have to feel unworthy to come before the Lord in prayer, or accept the evil things Satan would try to do to you as your "punishment" from God. (Satan loves to masquerade as God Himself)!

    God already punished Jesus in your place. If you were to receive your true punishment, you'd already be long dead! God's grace has kept you alive this long for a reason. Part of it is bringing you to this very place so you can hear Him calling out to you. It's not too late! No matter what you've done, it isn't too late for you to repent and to change you ways! If you are willing and ready to change your life, God is more than ready to help you, forgive you and restore you.

    When Jesus cried out "It is finished!" on the cross, and took His last breath, the curtain in the temple was ripped from top to bottom. This curtain was extremely thick, and separated the Holy Place from the Holy of Holies. This inner sanctuary was where the presence of the Living God dwelled. No unclean thing could enter into this sacred place. A priest only went in once a year and if he had any sin in his life, he would die as he came to minister before the Lord. Yet, when Jesus finished the work on the cross, that curtain that kept us away from God's presence was ripped open, symbolizing a new relationship that we can now have with the Living God.

    Jesus' atoning death on the cross made it possible for us to receive complete access to the presence of God. We can be forgiven of all our sins and no longer need to cower in the distance, afraid to face God. This problem has been dealt with once and for all, but we need to apply it for it to have any significance in our lives. This will not work if we agree only in theory. It must become a practical action in our lives.

    Steps to Receive God's Forgiveness

    Forgiveness is not automatic. Through the blood of Jesus, every person alive has the opportunity to receive forgiveness, but it does not happen involuntarily. The Bible makes it clear that there are some conditions we must meet to obtain God's forgiveness. Let's look at the following verses to find out what we must do to obtain forgiveness.

    1. 1 John 1:9 "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."

    Hosea 14:2-3 "Take words with you and return to the Lord. Say to him: 'Forgive all our sins and receive us graciously, that we may offer the fruit of our lips...We will never again say 'our gods' to what our own hands have made'" (NIV).

    From the above verses, the first thing we see is that we must confess our sins. We must recognize where we have erred, and hurt God by our actions. When confessing your sins to God, be as specific as you can. General confessions do very little to convict of sin, or to convince God of your seriousness, or to bring healing in those areas.

    2. Isaiah 55:7 "Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon."

    Ezekiel 18:21, "But if the wicked will turn from all his sins that he hath committed, and keep all my statutes, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die."

    Our next step in receiving forgiveness, is to turn from our wicked ways and change them. We may struggle with a certain sin, but if our intent is truly to change our ways and overcome that sin, God will give us the grace to do it. Many want to receive forgiveness from God without changing their ways. God knows the difference between those who are sincere and those who are using Him to temporarily ease their conscience. He is not mocked or deceived. If one comes to him in sorrow, humility and sincerity, His grace is abundant. However, He has little patience for those who would abuse His mercy. Search your heart and ask God to give you the grace for true repentance, and the power of the Holy Spirit to make the changes you need to do. His greatest joy is to help those who repent in sincerity.

    This should include asking forgiveness of those you have wronged and making restitution to them. True repentance will always be accompanied by corresponding actions.

    3. Along these lines, the Bible also makes it clear that we are to "make right" any situations where we have failed in our responsibilities to others.

    Matthew 5:23-25 Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift. Agree with thine adversary quickly, whiles thou art in the way with him; lest at any time the adversary deliver thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the officer, and thou be cast into prison.

    Romans 13:7 "Give everyone what you owe him: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor" (NIV).

    If we are sincere in our repentance we must be willing to pay the penalty for our crimes against others. This could include restoration of any goods, monies, or services that were taken wrongfully, (or never given at all, if we owed them). The Lord says to "agree with our adversary." If we are in dispute with someone, that means we must admit to what we have done and quit trying to defend ourselves. If we are in the wrong (even partially) it is better to take responsibility for it, than to argue for our rights.

    Many of us have failed to give honor and respect to those who are due it. That includes elders of any kind. They may be our parents, those in ministry, government leaders, our employers, those who are merely older than us in general, etc. Even if we don't agree with all their decisions, we are to honor and respect them for the office and position they hold. We are to refer to them with respect, both to their face and behind their back. Furthermore, God also commands us to treat everyone with common courtesy and respect regardless of who they are, because they are created in His image. Again, we do not have to concur with everything they do, but we owe them basic respect, out of respect for God. In fact, how much we really respect God will be evident in how we treat others.

    If you have failed to show proper respect and/or honor for someone, it is your responsibility to apologize (if applicable), and to change your ways. No one can do this for you. If you do not change your ways, you will face the inevitable slide into prideful self-deception and self-righteousness, both of which are an abomination to God.

    4. Matthew 6:14-15, "For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses."

    Mark 11:25-26 (Amplified) "And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him and let it drop--leave it, let it go--in order that your Father Who is in heaven may also forgive you your (own) failings and shortcomings and let them drop. But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your failings and shortcomings."

    These verses are perhaps some of the least applied Scriptures in the Kingdom of God. Somehow, many of us are deceived into thinking that we do not have to take them literally. However, Jesus emphasized this principal over and over again in His parables and teachings. If we receive God's forgiveness, it is our duty to forgive those who have wronged us. The two are inseparable. Jesus said plainly that God will not forgive us, if we do not forgive others. Many Christians are full of condemnation and guilt because they still feel the weight of their sins, even though they've asked God to forgive them. Could it be that they have not been able to receive God's forgiveness because they still have bitterness in their own hearts toward others? Sometimes, we may carry bitterness and hurt so long, that we no longer even recognize it as a problem. It becomes a part of our very nature. We may not scheme for revenge, but our souls are clouded with a quiet, persistent bitterness.

    Some of us have been betrayed in devastating ways, and have suffered profoundly at the hand of abusive people. Others have been horribly mistreated by those of other races, nations, and religions. If you are suffering with deep unhealed wounds, know the Lord has also been hurt with your pain. He loves you and wants to heal you. It is because of His great love for you that He is calling you to forgive. It is your only release from the emotional prison that you are now in.

    You do not have to live in a continual state of submission to evil emotions. You can be free of them, through the power of the cross. "Behold, I make all things new" says the Lord. You can be made new on the inside, and no longer staggering under a load of bitterness, hatred, pain, and depression. God wants to set you free right now!

    Forgiveness In Practice

    If you have been wounded, God will take even this frustration and pain of rejection in your life and work it for something good so you can be a vessel of healing to His people--if you let Him.

    "...But what if they don't even see how bad they've hurt me?" Whether they see it or not is between them and the Lord. Your responsibility is simply to forgive them.

    "...I'm afraid if I forgive, I'll only get hurt again." If you call on the Lord for wisdom He will help you in your situation. If you are in an abusive relationship/partnership/friendship you need to pray about whether you should stay in it. You can still forgive them, but it doesn't mean that you have to live with, or be closely associated with them. There is a difference.

    "...If I forgive them, they'll only go on hurting others." If the person who hurt you has done it in an illegal way such as sexual abuse, theft, murder, etc., you have a responsibility to do all you can to stop others from being hurt in the same way. However, you can still forgive them, in the sense that you do not actively hate them, and can pray for God's mercy on them.

    When God forgives us, He no longer holds our sins against us. Therefore, we don't have the right to hold others' sins against them--not if we belong to Jesus. If we belonged to the world, we could indulge in bitterness, but the blood-bought child of a merciful King has no such right.

    Whether we "feel" forgiveness in our hearts or not, we are under obligation to obey God. As we obey Him, He will supply the feelings. Obedience must come first, then the right feelings will follow. We can't wait for a special nudge from On High to get us to do what His Word already tells us plainly to do. The longer we wait, the worse off we will be. Oswald Chambers, in his famous devotional, "My Utmost For His Highest," preaches strongly about this concept:

    "Revise where you have become stodgy spiritually and you will find it goes back

    to a point where you knew there was something you should do, but you did not do

    it because there seemed no immediate call to, and now you have no perception,

    no discernment; at a time of crisis you are spiritually distracted instead of

    spiritually self-possessed."

    The best way to be rid of bearing a grudge against someone (or a race, nation, gender, or church, etc.), is to confess it to the Lord and seek His help. Then, begin to pray for that person as if you were praying for yourself.

    "Lord, bless so and so. Cause their way to be pleasing to You in all that they do. Lead them closer to you! Cleanse them of all sin and give them the grace and strength to repent of any wickedness in their heart. Cause them to thirst for intimacy with You, and let them be fulfilled in Your presence. Let them honor You and put You first in all their ways. Send Your Holy Spirit to minister to them, to strengthen them, and to lead them. Let them fulfill the call of God on their life. Bless their family/job/ministry/etc. Cause them to be fruitful and to be established in your love. Minister to them in the area of their deepest needs. Help me to be truly concerned for them. Let me have your heart for this person. Show me how to pray for them and love them as you want me to...."

    Then, bind away any spirit of deception that has come over them, or anything else the Lord may show you in prayer. This is what "loving our enemies" is all about. It is looking past the sin they have committed against us, and honestly wanting the best for them and for God to be merciful to them.

    Matthew 5:44-48: "But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? Do not even the publicans the same? And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? Do not even the publicans so? Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect."

    As you are faithful to pray for those who have wronged you in this way, you will see a change come about in them--and in you!!! Instead of hate, you will begin to have God's compassion for them. There is nothing that pleases the Lord more than to see His children bearing each other's burdens, loving each other from the heart, and living in humility toward each other.

    "Standing on the promises of God"

    Many have written us with a fear that perhaps they have "gone too far." They have continually struggled with a besetting sin that seems to master them again and again. They wonder if they have lost their salvation, if God has given up on them, of if they were ever truly saved at all.

    Please know this: If you are crying out to Him for forgiveness, it is only because He has given you the grace to do so--and He WILL answer your heart's cry. If you were past the point of no return, you wouldn't even care about the concept of forgiveness. It is only because you belong to the Lord that you are still seeking Him.

    Jesus said in John 6:37, "All whom My Father has given (entrusted) to Me, will come to Me and I will most certainly not cast out--I will never, no never reject one of them who comes to Me" (Amplified).

    If you are feeling weak, understand this about your beautiful Savior: "He does not crush the weak, or quench the smallest hope..." (Matthew 12:20, Living Bible).

    God loves you and He is on your side to help you overcome sin. He is not against you. He is for you. Please refer to the above (and following) scriptures as often as you feel the need--as often as the devil would whisper lies of condemnation in your ear (Satan literally means "Accuser" and that is what he does best). Jesus stood against the devil with scripture and we should do the same thing! These promises are true and precious, for "God is not a man that He should lie" (Numbers 23:19). Even if you don't "feel" forgiven, that is beside the point. God's word is truer than our emotions.

    All of us have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. That is why Jesus died for us in the first place! This is the most basic tenant of Christianity, yet it seems it is the primary lesson we all must learn again and again. God doesn't love us because we are worthy. He loves us because He IS Love.

    Hebrews 10:18-23, "Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin. Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; And having an high priest over the house of God; Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised.)

    1 John 4:16-18 (NIV), "And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God and God in him. In this way love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgement, because in this world we are like him. There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love."

    Psalm 103: 8-13, "The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous in mercy. He will not always chide neither will he keep his anger for ever. He hath not dealt with us after our sins; nor rewarded us according to our iniquities. For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward them that fear him. As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us. Like as a father pitieth his children, so the LORD pitieth them that fear him."

    Psalm 34:18, "The LORD is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit."

    Isaiah 44:22 (NIV), "I have swept away your offenses like a cloud, your sins like the morning mist. Return to me for I have redeemed you."

    Micah 7:19, "He will turn again, he will have compassion upon us; he will subdue our iniquities; and thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea."

    Psalm 103:2-3, "Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits:Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases;"

    Romans 10:11, "For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed."

    Jesus said that the one who is forgiven much will love much. We all need to be forgiven of much, but very few of us recognize it. If you recognize your sins and mourn deeply because of them, you are closer to true love than all the multitudes who are doing "just fine."

    However, just as there is a time to mourn for our sins, there is also a time to rejoice that we are truly forgiven and clothed in the very righteousness of Christ Himself. Once we have been forgiven, God wants us to walk free of the burden of guilt. That is why He assures us over and over in His word that He literally forgets our sins. I used to think preachers only made that up, until I saw it in the Bible. As if forgiveness were not enough, God also gives us the royal robes of holiness to wear. In Him, we are made righteousness in Christ. If that is not something to rejoice about, nothing is! Praise God!!!

    2 Corinthians 5:21, "For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him."

    It Is Utterly Impossible For Love To Be Defeated

    In all of God's creation, one thing can absolutely never be defeated, and that is Love. Though it has been trivialized, mocked, perverted, ignored, and trampled on, True Love will eventually change the whole order and fabric of creation. It is impossible for this not to happen. God is Love, and God will never be defeated. Love cannot fail, but it will vanquish every foe that is set against it, of which unforgiveness, bitterness, hatred and pride are a part. These things will cease absolutely one day. But we can hasten that day and speed it's coming, by applying the parameters of love to our lives now. If we do this, we wage spiritual war with the most powerful (and essentially only) weapon of spiritual warfare that there is.

    We all love to talk about love in the abstract, but the depth of our commitment to it is revealed in our willingness and ability to forgive. It is the true measure of what sort of warrior we really are, in the kingdom of God. No matter what accusations the Enemy may make, forgiveness drowns them in the blood of Jesus, and turns the bullets of his words into butterflies. That is why forgiveness and walking in love cannot be mere options for the Christian. Either we do it, or we don't. If we don't, we deceive ourselves that we are Christ's followers. If we want to follow Jesus then we must walk where He walked. We must forgive as He forgives and love as He loves. The simplicity of this gospel is the only thing that can and will transform us--and the world!

    We've all heard these words, but let's read them again from the Amplified Bible:

    "Love endures long and is patient and kind; love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy; it is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display itself haughtily. It is not conceited--arrogant and inflated with pride; it is not rude (unmannerly), and does not act unbecomingly. Love (God's love in us) does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not self-seeking ; it is not touchy or fretful or resentful; it takes no account of the evil done to it--pays no attention to a suffered wrong. It does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness , but rejoices when right and truth prevail. Love bears up under anything and everything that comes, is ever ready to believe the best about every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances and it endures everything (without weakening). Love never fails--never fades out or becomes obsolete or comes to an end" (1 Corinthians 13:4-8).

    Leave a comment:


  • For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge
    replied
    Truth, You are given the punishment of saying 100000 "Hail Mary's" and 100000 "Our fathers" until you can be forgiven. Don't come back D-ick-f-uck until done!!!!!

    Leave a comment:


  • Truth
    replied
    America's faith is alive and well, according to a new Gallup poll that also found that President Bush is favored by the faithful over Democratic candidate Sen. John Kerry.
    The survey found that six out of 10 Americans said religion is "very important" to them in daily life "” a steadfast figure that has remained virtually unchanged in the past decade, according to Gallup. Twenty-six percent said religion was "fairly" important, while just 15 percent said it didn't matter.

    The survey of 1,000 adults was conducted June 3 to June 6 and released yesterday.
    Faith is also a practical concern: 61 percent said religion can solve "all or most of today's problems," while just 24 percent said faith was "old- fashioned and out of date."
    Religious preferences also colored politics.

    Among all Protestants in the survey, 56 percent said they would vote for Mr. Bush and 39 percent for Mr. Kerry. But the fervent favored the president.

    Out of those who had attended services in the last week, 66 percent would vote for Mr. Bush and 31 percent for Mr. Kerry. Among those who deemed religion "very important," the numbers were 63 percent and 33 percent, respectively.

    Forty-nine percent of all Catholic respondents said they would vote for the Massachusetts senator, while 42 percent said they'd vote for Mr. Bush. The president had an edge among the devout, however.

    Among Catholics who had attended church in the past week, 47 percent favored Mr. Bush and 45 percent Mr. Kerry. Among Catholics who said religion was "very important," 46 percent favored Mr. Bush and 45 percent Mr. Kerry.

    As a practicing Catholic, Mr. Kerry's support of abortion rights and stem-cell research has irked some of his fellow Catholics and prompted church leaders to adopt a statement last week warning Catholic politicians they were "cooperating in evil" if they favored such things. They left the decision to give those politicians Communion up to the local bishops.

    But Washington Archbishop Cardinal Theodore E. McCarrick warned the group that denying Communion to errant lawmakers could make the sacrament a "partisan political battleground."

    Meanwhile, Gallup found that if independent Ralph Nader is factored in, Mr. Bush and Mr. Kerry are basically tied among Catholics, with 43 percent favoring Mr. Kerry and 42 percent Mr. Bush. Nine percent said they would vote for Mr. Nader.

    "Similar patterns are found when Nader is included on the [Protestant] ballot with Bush and Kerry," the survey stated.

    Gallup analyst Joseph Carroll called the United States "a predominantly Christian nation."

    Overall, 64 percent belong to a church or synagogue. Forty-three percent have attended services in the past seven days.

    Among the 1,000 respondents, 48 percent said they were Protestants.

    In this group, 11 percent were Baptist, 9 percent Methodist, 6 percent Southern Baptist, 5 percent Lutheran, 3 percent Presbyterian, 2 percent Pentecostal, 2 percent Church of Christ and 2 percent Episcopalian.

    Of the rest of the respondents, 25 percent were Catholics, 11 percent were "Christian, non-specific," 3 percent were Jewish, 1 percent Mormon, 1 percent Orthodox, 7 percent had "no religion" and 4 percent were "other," or did not designate a religion.

    Leave a comment:


  • Truth
    replied
    jesus christ
    Christianity is centered upon the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth, as chronicled in the Gospels, and the texts of the New Testament which develop theological themes centered upon him. Believed born around 4 BC, Jesus is said to have begun his ministry around 30 AD, during the time of Tiberius Caesar. After performing great miracles he is said to have been crucified by the Romans under direction from the Jewish religious authorities.

    Given the title of Jesus Christ, he has become an important figure of salvation, his death a sacrifice to atone for all human sin since the time of Adam, the first man, as chronicled in the Book of Genesis in the Old Testament.

    His hebrew name is originally "Yeshoshua", Jesus being a Greek form of the word. The Latin rendering would be Joshua. The title of Christ itself comes from the Greek word for "annointed", which is a reference to the tradition of Old Testament prophets being annointed in a ritualistic manner. In the New Testament it is used implicitly as the title of the Jewish Messiah.

    canon
    The whole tradition is believed to have existed at first only in **** form, with various writings slowly coming into existence over the next hundred years after the death of Jesus. There is a great amount of debate among Biblical scholars as to which came first. The Gospels are often cited as having being composed from around 50 AD. However, the first time they appear in the form as we know now does not occur until around the middle of the second century AD.

    The Epistles of Saul of Tarsus (Saint Paul) are less contentious, with general agreement of their origin being in in the 50's and 60's AD. They are most likely the first textual material of the accepted Christian canon. This is important as St. Paul effectively is the origin for all Christian theology.

    A relatively large number of Christian texts claiming informed origin soon became read about the Roman Empire, some of which are obvious and poor fakes, whereas others present interesting philosophical angles. It took the will of the Roman Emperor Constantine to bring together various Christian Bishops in 325 AD, at the Council of Nicaea, to decide upon an authorised Christian canon for an alerady greatly diversified religion. Despite the strong will of persons such as Arius, it was Athanasius whose viewpoint essentially became dominant in deciding what core of the New Testament was accepted. By 397 AD, with the addition of Revelations at the Council of Chalcedon, the authoritive version of the Bible that we have today was complete.

    themes
    According to the Gospel of Luke in chapter 10, Jesus is challenged to state which he believes are the most importnat commandments of God. The King James Version translates the reply as thus: "And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy god with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself."

    Leave a comment:


  • Truth
    replied
    NEW >

    ::10 SIMPLE WAYS THAT LEAD YOU TO HAPPINESS::

    1. Decide to be Happy - Yes, we all have reasons to be angry, sad, disappointed, and depressed, but we all have reasons to be happy. Instead of focusing on what keeps you down, focus on what keeps you up.

    2. Smile - Try to smile when you don't feel like it. The very act of smiling can just make you feel like a new person. Smiling invites others to feel happy too.

    3. Be with Others - Don't be alone too much. Being alone makes you focus on yourself. Talk to others and motivate others to be happy. Ask others about themselves and show interest. Happiness is contagious.

    4. Help Others - Helping others makes you see your gifts that God gave you. You also have an opportunity to make someone's life just a bit more pleasant.

    5. Be Happy with What you Have - Stop comparing what others might or might not have and being jealous. Look at what you have. I challenge you to write down 100 things/reasons you're thankful. You'll see you have a lot to be grateful for.

    6. Look at the Silver Lining - In about every situation, there is some hope or something good. Never give up hope in life. Hope keeps you going.

    7. Pray - Pray to God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit that They help you to be happy. They can inspire you.

    8. Attend Mass Regularly - Of course it's a Holy Day of Obligation to attend Mass on Sunday. Make sure you do because it will make you feel happy. When possible, try attending the daily Masses. The more time you spend with God, the better you'll feel.

    9. Slow Down - Enjoy life. We only have one shot at life. Each day gives us opportunity to do something great.

    10. Reassess Your Priorties - Are God and your family dropping in your list of priorties? It could be time to reassess what is important. When you're meeting your priorties, you'll feel happier.

    Leave a comment:


  • Truth
    replied
    NEW >

    ::WHERE IS GOD?::

    God is everywhere." I tried to understand 'everywhere' and ended up thinking that God was like the air, surrounding the world I knew and even filling the heavens. But I didn't have a sense of God's closeness, God's presence in my life.
    I still don't have that sense all the time, since darkness sometimes pulls the shades inside. But now I know that if I wait quietly instead of stumbling and trying to 'fix' the lights, my eyes often learn to see things I might have missed in the brilliance of day. And sure enough, God is everywhere, but 'everywhere' has shrunken and other ether has become the everyday, the people, places and things that grace my life.
    For example, I find God in the small kindnesses I receive from people who are unaware they're treating me kindly: the woman who holds the door for me, even if I don't have my arms full; the salesclerk who, after I decide against a purchase, thanks me for coming in--and means it; the student who e-mails me a thank-you note at the end of the semester. God is in the men in Trenton State Prison who teach me patience and the men on the snowplow who, seeing me struggle to free my mailbox, gently scoop it clear.

    God hides in things, too. The Ladybug that, since Thanksgiving, guards our house and reappears whenever I get dispirited; the tiny bird that returns each spring to fill the red maple behind the kitchen with impossible song; the blizzard that clogs the roads and clears the calendars. All these remind me to trust in God's endless, boundless providence.
    And if I can remember to look, I find God even through little annoyances that irk me. Two days ago, I was slowed by a gigantic, Darth Vader-like tractor-trailer that, despite the yellow warning light, pulled into the intersection I was waiting at. For the next three signal changes, this monster backed and crept as it made its wide turn, and as the line behind me grew hotter and hotter. but instead of feeling angry, I was chuckling by the time we moved, for I had just seen an eighteen-wheeled parable. In six-foot black letters that bristled against the yellow paneling, the truck cautioned soberly against 'PRIDE.'

    So, when I keep searching, even in the dark, finding God is a never-ending treasure hunt. And I don't even have to search all by myself. I just have to start looking, because God is so eager to find me that God gives me clues. If I'm awake enough to notice, God is here -- and there, in you and in me-- and everywhere.

    Leave a comment:


  • Truth
    replied
    ::RELATION BETWEEN IGNORANCE, MISUNDERSTANDING AND INTEGRAL KNOWLEDGE::


    Have you ever been really misunderstood? I mean, like impure motives slapped on you, and no way to disprove them? Circumstances that are too complex, with too many players, and it doesn't matter what you do or say, people look suspiciously at you?

    -The ability to simply know things in their completeness, fullness, and in their integral relationship, is what we mean by "Knowledge" or "Integral Knowledge." It is a status that enables one to understand, perceive, have access to the true truths, the integral truths, the vast quantity and quality of truths that are emerging at any given moment in time.

    -Our current way of knowing in life is fairly close to the opposite of Knowledge. That opposite we call "Ignorance." In the Ignorance we have extremely limited knowledge that is there, that is unfolding at any moment in time; we have false and error-filled knowledge; non-integral, related to the whole knowledge. We are living in one millionth of our knowledge potential at any moment. In that way we are closer to the insect than the potential human being living the Integral Knowledge.

    -In the Divine reality, the source of all creation, the essence of all being, there is an original integral Consciousness, reflected as unity, wholeness, perfection, and infinity of Knowledge. Something occurred in the process of the creation of the cosmos, in the emergence of the universe from a Divine source, that caused an Original integral consciousness and Knowledge to turn into, to become Ignorance.

    -In that breaking down of the unity and consciousness and knowledge in the process of creation, the Knowledge has turned into Ignorance. In the human individual that Ignorance is expressed primarily in our thinking processes, in the human Mind itself.

    -Our minds, though the essential instrument of human consciousness to perceive and comprehend life, is also a flawed instrument. It doesn't see the whole truth of any thing; it only sees a part of any truth. It tends to pick one part or side and say that one part or side is the whole truth, when there are in fact a multiplicity of parts or sides that it rejects. Thus, the mind particularizes things, and most importantly for our inquiry into Ignorance, it excludes things.

    -It is the exclusionary nature of mind that is in life the source and cause of the movement away from the unity and truth of the integral Knowledge. This exclusionary aspect of mind is the cause of our Ignorance.

    -What we call Falsehood and Evil are simply extensions of Ignorance. What we call Falsehood is a result of our attachment to our Ignorance and unconsciousness. What we call Evil is a result of acting on the unconsciousness of Ignorance and Falsehood. This separateness, rooted in ego and enabled by the limiting action of mind is the root of all falsehood, and evil.

    -Whenever we live in ego, there is the greater likelihood that Mind will manifest its exclusionary tendency. The more we are in ego, the more Mind tends to be exclusionary, moving away from the true truth, the whole truth, the myriad of truths; reinforcing our Ignorance.

    -When we live on the surface of life, it supports and fortifies our separateness, our sense of own self, rather than the whole of ourselves not separate in relation to the environment and others. This is the ego which reinforces the exclusivity of Mind that is the basis of Ignorance.

    -By withdrawing from the surface of life to the depths, we overcome our ego and separateness, which enable Mind to move from its exclusionary Ignorance to exclusionary, integral Knowledge.
    -We move to the depths by connecting at a point with our Subliminal being. This is inner concentration.

    -Touching one's personal evolving soul, establishes a new nature, which moves us away from an ego-based existence, toward a more permanent connection through our minds with the greater forces emerging in the environment and the universe, placing us at the doorstep of the vast, infinite, true, whole Integral Knowledge available to us at any moment in time.

    -As we live more and more in the psychic realm, in the personal evolving soul, we experience a state of silence, which enables our thinking processes to function far more efficiently. In silence our minds come quickly to the right conclusions, sense the right thoughts, have a clarity of understanding and insight. At a further stage knowledge begins to descend into our minds from the universal plane as illumination of light, of vision, of revelation of knowledge. Further still one can begin to have intuitions of knowledge descending into one's mind. When one needs to know something, the knowledge simply appears in his mind, without the necessity of any of the ordinary thinking processes of mind. The knowledge simply enters one's mind from the universal plane of mind, where all knowledge resides in its unity and totality.

    -To have this Integral Knowledge, that mirrors the integral consciousness of the Divine Reality, we must discover an ultimate truth consciousness that enables us to become completely one with, in perfect identity with, unseperated from the object of knowledge. This is the unitarian supramental truth consciousness, an ultimate status of human consciousness and evolution.
    -As a result of a great development in consciousness, we are now open to the many-sided, multi-faceted, integral understanding, insight, and knowledge that is to us available in the atmosphere at any point in time. In that way we function with the ultimate mental efficiency in life; enabling the greatest and highest quality knowledge to enter our minds in the shortest period of time with the least effort. We bring the future into the present. We open ourselves to have the knowledge to accomplish at 1000 or more times faster, better then we do now. We open the doors of the infinite Knowledge to appear in the finite Ignorance of the present. We open the doorways to becoming a new evolutionary being.

    Leave a comment:


  • For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge
    replied
    Here you go Jo, I'll rag on him/her. Okay Truth, if I wanted to go to church I f-ucking would. Inner piece is wanting what you already have. Simple. Try, please and I mean really try to direct your religious s-hit to the proper forum. Perhaps you could invest some of your time and money towards Jim Baker . He would truly appreciate any and all contributions. Have fun

    Leave a comment:


  • Truth
    replied
    Why is it so difficult to respect others?

    Because we live in a society that is highly competitive. To disrespect another is to place yourself above them in status and in what you presume you deserve. That disrespect permits denial of any harm such competitiveness may cause to another and justification that you deserve more than another. To respect another is to bring to conscious awareness that all of us are more alike in our humanity than we are different across nations, across races, across beliefs, and across gender.

    Love and peace.

    "Be devoted to one another in brotherly love,
    Honor one another above yourselves."

    Leave a comment:


  • Josie Jo
    replied
    Hi Still.

    I was thinking of you, so I posted Desiderada, the only inspiration I know. I found the second one by accident.

    P.S. It was really hard not to rag on Truth, but I respected your wishes.

    Besides, Paddy took care of it for me on his own.

    Leave a comment:


  • Truth
    replied
    Paddy
    Member
    posted September 06, 2004 12:30 AM

    Truth, I know you think that the sun shines out of your a-r-s-e...........but you must be carrying around a wide load zit covered *** to produce this pile of horse s-h-i-t. You give a new meaning to the concept of freedom of speech

    oh the bleeped out word is a-s-s


    Freedom of expression is one of the most fundamental rights that individuals enjoy. It is fundamental to the existence of democracy and the respect of human dignity. It is also one of the most dangerous rights, because freedom of expression means the freedom to express one's discontent with the status quo and the desire to change it. As such, it is one of the most threatened rights, with governments - and even human rights groups - all over the world constantly trying to curtail it.

    The United States, probably like no other nation, has recognized the importance of freedom of expression to safeguard democracy and grow as a nation. However, this does not mean there are no efforts to try to curtail it. The internet has often been the target of this efforts, as it provides practically everyone with the ability to communicate their ideas to wide audiences and escapes the ability of the state to control it.

    @

    There once was a soul
    who fought for free speech,
    yes,
    they actually fought,
    (what a gem,
    what a peach !)

    But...

    when they came home
    and told of what they'd done,
    I screamed out:

    " WAR ...is STUPID !"

    To be continued.

    Leave a comment:


  • Paddy
    replied
    oh the bleeped out word is a-s-s

    Leave a comment:

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