Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Starting Riots

Sometimes, all I have to do to start a riot is quote Scripture.
And I am most successful with church folk!  (You may have noticed)

Here's a couple of riot starters.
2 Corinthians 5 : 19 says .....

God was in Jesus Christ, reconciling the world to himself, not counting people's sins against them.
   God doesn't count people's sins against them?
   People don't have to pay for their sins?
   Everyone is going to be judged, you know.
   Barry, you're out of your mind.

..... just quoting Scripture mate.

Romans 5 : 20 says .....

Where sin increases, grace increases all the more.
Romans 3 : 5 and 7 express the same theme ....
our unrighteousness highlights God's righteousness
God's truth super-abounds my falsehood

   That means we should sin more and more so there will be more and more grace?
   Our sinfulness helps people see God's qualities more clearly?
   God doesn't want that from us surely?

..... you've finally said something right, God doesn't want us to sin.

Why would anyone even want to behave badly towards someone who has treated them so kindly and generously.
Anyone who would do so, surely hasn't yet appreciated God's grace.

These scriptures are saying the obvious.

..... the greater the sin, the greater grace is and needs to be - and grace will always trump even the greatest sin.
..... the blacker is the canvas of one's life, the more brilliantly does the radiance or glory of God's grace stand out when painted on that canvas.

The world is quite interested in talking about such things, but church folk, especially church leaders, are quick to reach for their riot gear.
The Scriptures don't fit their beliefs or help them keep their congregations in line.
I should know - I used to be one of them in my younger years.

And the last bit of 2 Corinthians 5 : 19 says .....

And we have been appointed messengers of God's reconciliation.
Ah, that's the ministry I am enjoying, regardless of the riots I start.

Blessings, Barry

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Dreams and Visions

One of Jesus' promises that I love to quote is recorded in John 12: 32.
"And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself."
Some interesting stories are coming out of the Middle East at the moment demonstrating one of the ways Jesus is doing this.
Muslim believers from this area of the world are frequently telling how they came to Christ through dreams and visions of Jesus.
They are saying things like .....

I was content.  I was a Muslim, and all of a sudden I get this dream about Jesus and he loved me and said, "Come, follow me."
God is at work in these Muslim communities in a way that missionaries over the years have never seen before.
While the cost of converting from Islam to Christianity is terribly high in Muslim countries, imprisonment or death for most, increasing numbers of Muslims are coming to Jesus.
Just like you and I were - called and drawn.

I think we are living in exciting times.
Blessings, Barry

Monday, September 10, 2012


I continue to be amazed at the accusation of heresy levelled against me by leaders and others in the mainstream church.

I think God is love and therefore loves all of his creation, yet I'm the heretic.
I think God is more powerful than those he has created, yet I'm the heretic.
I think God's free will is more likely to be achieved than man's "free" will, yet I'm the heretic.
I believe Paul when he told Timothy that God is the saviour of the world, not just believers, yet I'm the heretic.
I think Jesus died for the sins of all mankind, not just those who accept him in their lifetime on this planet, yet I'm the heretic.
I believe Jesus when he said he would draw all people to himself, yet I'm the heretic.
I believe the Bible when it says that at the completion of the ages God will bring everyone in the heavens and on earth together under the headship of Christ, yet I'm the heretic.

So you can see why I was delighted to find this definition of heresy.

"Heresy" is often nothing more than the rejection of widely held error.
Isn't that something?
I'm a heretic, and proud of it.

Blessings, Barry