Posted by: the warrioress | May 18, 2014

Fearless

This is a reason not to give into the fears that living in this worldly realm generate. God doesn’t want us to be afraid. God wants us to trust Him and His plan. God is in control, no matter how things appear so being as “wise as serpents, but gentle as doves” is important.

There are the good intentioned who mean well with horrific warnings of what’s ahead for the unbelieving and the Christian. Provoking fear and worry can’t be the will of God for any of us though; God prefers that we build one another up, that we encourage each other. The bible tells us to think on good, edifying, peaceful things. We are not to worry.

Certainly the unbeliever has reasons to be concerned, regardless of their feelings to the contrary. No matter what they may think, time is not on their side, based upon how things look for our planet; still we cannot scare or force The Lord God on anyone–nor should we. We share with whom we are led to share. God draws all to Him as He desires.

154dd-hell2Pushing and regaling people with horror stories from the bible creates rebellion and anger in others. It is an unproductive, unfruitful way to share the good news of Jesus Christ. Trying to scare God’s people into seeing things in a way that brings forth fear and anxiety is not Christ-like; instead it is controlling, demanding, without respect, and ignorant of the basic rights of others. There is no love in this kind of behavior. The bible tells us how to recognize love. Fear and the inciting of fear, guilt, or shame is not love.

Instead show love. Show Jesus. Show God.

13 If I speak in the tongues[a] of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast,[b] but do not have love, I gain nothing.

4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. 11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. 12 For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.

13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

Footnotes:

1 Corinthians 13:1-13

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Responses

  1. Ok…so a quick google search seems to reveal this as an internet meme. Numerous searches of numerous variations of this theme from numerous translations of the bible seen to come up with, at most ,roughly 1/3 the number of this theme.

    But does it really matter? I actually prefer the score or so times this seemsto rally occur. The world is not such a fearful place that we need to be reminded of this each and every day….

    But of course- I really don’t particularly want to look into the differences between the old and the new testaments. The vengeful god who insists we should indeed fear him versus the loving son of god, jesus….

  2. Although he had his faults, my Uncle Malcolm was one of the best Christian people I have ever known. He is dead now, but I remember something he said to me one time. It applies to the fire poster above. Here is my best paraphrasing of what he said:

    “If we have a God over us who would do that forever to a human soul, no matter what that person did, then God is worse than any psychopath ever dreamed up on this planet, and he does not deserve to even be regarded as God. If this is who God really is, even if we all go to Heaven, once we get there we will have no chance whatsoever living for eternity under the thumb of a psychopath who is that bad.”

    That’s an interesting point. Unlike the Christian fundamentalists who are so scared of God that they are afraid to even ask a question, we United Methodists can ask all kinds of questions. For example, has anyone ever considered the possibility that the God described in the Bible is a child?

    Has anyone ever considered the possibility that the God described in the Bible is mentally ill—a singular but eternal and all powerful creature who came into being somehow—but He was the only one—and spent eons alone—with the incessant loneliness driving him slowly into a state of what we would describe as mental illness—perhaps a split personality who is the Father sometimes, then morphs into the Son under some circumstance, and then under some other circumstance morphs into the Holy Spirit. And how would a figure such as Satan fit into that sort of hypothetical picture? If that picture were true, what would it mean for humans?

    I think one of the differences between Christianity and Judaism is that, without being disrespectful or unkind to God, these sorts of hypothetical questions were open for round table discussion in ancient times and even now. Jewish people were not afraid to discuss the meaning of God in all of its many facets and dimensions—and even perhaps aspects that were regarded as dubious—just to be sure that the subject was thoroughly covered. For example, from currently available history, we know for a fact that people who regarded themselves as Christians all over the ancient world were having wide-ranging discussions about:

    Who was this Jesus guy really?

    What did his coming mean?

    Was he resurrected bodily or only spiritually?

    And a whole slew of tangential questions. A real conversation was going on for a couple of hundred years after 33 A.D.—all by people who took the subject of Jesus quite seriously and sought after him with an honest NEED TO KNOW.

    Just some random thoughts.


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