Not Mere Men
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This is Quite Revealing
Paul stressed to the Corinthian church in his first letter (chapter 3 verses 3 and 4) that they shouldn't act or think like mere men. The King James version renders it being "carnal," the interpretation for the Greek word "karkikos" which first means "of the flesh," but may also be read as "in the body" or "bodily." Thus, the use of carnal in the King James and man in the NIV. Both, of course, are correct. True believers like Paul are not mere flesh; we are not mere men.
We should never see ourselves as carnal, of the flesh, or mere men. Thus, the idea that "I am only human," is a gross error many unthinking churches and pastors have been propagating for years (even centuries)--and they will surely answer for it. Jesus Christ firmly espouses perfection: "Be perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect." And to be perfect, we need to be new creations in Christ. Our old versions cannot be made new. Many Christians are mere patch up work of the old. The old should be gone, with zero trace. New creations are changed daily into another creature, because they eat something ordinary people hate eating. They eat Jesus' flesh and drink his blood. Jesus said "My flesh is real food, my blood real drink." And that started mass evacuation of disciples away from Jesus in his day. People still do so today and continue to "serve God" in church..
What Jesus Meant by "Perfection"
Perfection to Jesus is being "as your heavenly Father is." Meditate that and you'd realize the gravity of this pronouncement. I don't know if people really understand the term "Godly," which is so abused today, as well as the term "Christ-likeness." They probably think of it as nothing but cleanliness is "next to godliness." True godliness is being as God is. You don't turn into God, but you become as God is. The idea came from Jesus' own mouth--being "as your heavenly Father is." You don't turn into the perfect Father, but you become as he is.
Now, it is a given that the word "Be" in "Be perfect" is a process. However, it is not a process that begins with trash and gradually reduces filthiness so that you have lesser rottenness and reduced wickedness than you were yesterday. Process to many people is how you have lesser sins this Sunday than you had last Sunday. Seriously, it begins with perfect, and proceeds onward with more glory and perfection--in ever increasing glory, says 2 Corinthians 3 and 4. Jesus didn't say, "Be good" or "Be better" but directly said "Be perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect." Paul said anyone in Christ is a new creation, not will be a new creation. If this isn't your experience, review well your spiritual condition. The Word can never go wrong, and neither can we change it.
Perfection starts with character--especially love and forgiveness. That's plain in the context where we get "Be perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect," and "Are you not acting like mere men?" However, it should not stop where it starts. Everything in God moves in ever-increasing glory. Nothing stays dormant. Nothing stays in the beginning. We should arrive at "Anyone who has faith in me shall do the same things I am doing, and greater works shall he do..." (Jn.14). True believers should do exactly as Jesus did--and more! We should not stop at love and a Christ-like character--we should go on to awesome signs and wonders and tremendous miracles, like producing something awesome out of nothing (being like Jesus) because we have ceased to be mere human.
Jesus never says urgent things like this in an optional tone. He says "anyone who has faith," not "some." Do you have faith? Then you should be doing all that Jesus did. No believer is exempted. It's not an option. No true believer can opt out and say, "Umm, that stuff is not for us. We're just ordinary believers. We're happy the way we are, and God understands." God's true sons and daughters are not made up of the complacent and self-satisfied "ordinary" people who are just like anybody out there in the streets, simple folks who just happily enjoy their church activities. Simple and low profile, yes, but they are spiritual giants no less! As I always declare, they are more powerful than 100 nuclear bombs. Jesus says his true church demolishes the gates of hell.
Funny how many churches never get out of their "we're not a perfect church" excuse since the day they began. They reach 50 years and you still hear them say "We're only humans; we're not perfect." They have long buried their one solo talent in the ground. And Jesus says such folks are "lazy and wicked servants, throw them out into the outer darkness!" The fact is, once you start with Christ, you're a new creation pronto! And you go on from glory to glory. That's God's laid out plan in Scriptures. If your church is teaching otherwise, it's a false church.
Thus, perfection means we no longer think or act (or excuse ourselves) like mere men. We should be like God, imitating his life and mindset. No excuses for our shortfalls. Repent pronto and immediately "Be imitators of God" (Eph.5). Now, imagine a church of believers living, acting, and moving like God, in all fullness--being as God is. (Being filled with the Holy Spirit is being as God is--you're full of God!) That's the church Jesus is building, and "the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." It's not what men build as denominations which are powerless and know nothing about the Spirit realms because they're too engrossed in their beautiful Sunday worship service and programs and happy activities.
I always LOL (laugh out loud) each time I remember that church where I was invited as speaker. They could not do anything as long as the program had not yet been printed! So I asked, "Umm, could we not just start worshiping and be led?" They looked at me as though I were an idiot. After the programs have been printed and distributed, their next problem was the presider and song leader--they were late. "Err, you want me to preside and lead in worship?" I suggested. Again, they looked at me as if it were the most foolish thing to say. Churches today are like that---powerless. They cannot do anything without their programs and plans. How can they become perfect and godly and awesome as the Father is?
Imagine Christ as Powerless as the Church is Today
Can you imagine how Jesus and the disciples worshiped? What if they also thought as churches today think? "Okay," says Jesus, "we have 5 thousand people attending our Sermon on the Mount today,so produce 5000 copies of the program--no, make that 10,000, including the women. And Judas, you preside." So, they begin hand copying the programs--10,000 copies.
Later, Jesus asks: "The multitudes are here, are the programs ready?" Andrew says only a hundred were produced. "WHAT?" Jesus shouts, terribly disappointed. "How are we going to proceed without programs? Go get those programs done! How about Judas, is he ready?" James says Judas isn't around yet (he's started meeting with Herod for the betrayal). "Huh?" says the helpless Jesus. "Then how will the Father be pleased with all these blunders? We cannot start without the programs or Judas!" Haha! Funny, but this is exactly how powerless churches think today.
We are not mere men. Then what are we? We're sons and daughters of God. When you are such, you cease to be mere human, or of the flesh, or carnal. If you're so sure that God is so powerful--and you shout it in your worship services--then why are you powerless if you're His offspring? God the awesome powerful cannot produce weakling offspring. If my surname is Gaerlan, I will never have a child surnamed Gates or Brown or Mayweather. Imagine my kid shouting, "My dad is Gaerlan! My dad is Gaerlan!" Then someone asks him what his surname is and then he says, "Greenfield."
Who Do You Think You Are? God?
I'm thrilled when challenged with that question. And I answer them, "No, but I'm God's son!" They ask me that when I start bragging about being like God as he is and about perfection. "Do you never make a mistake?" They think godliness is never making a mistake--and not making mistakes means you always fulfill their expectations. If you don't meet their expectations, you commit a mistake. To the Pharisees and Sadducees Jesus made big mistakes. Fact is, to many people, even God commits mistakes when their expectations aren't met.
"Of course I make mistakes," I tell them, "because I'm not God. But because I'm God's son--and Jesus has declared with finality that God's children are perfect--so I believe with all my heart that I'm perfect. So thus I live and think and act and move and have my being, each day of my life!"
In Lystra, God did an awesome miracle through Paul and Barnabas. A crippled walked. The people saw that "The gods have come down to us in human form!" And they started worshiping them. The apostles insisted that they were just humans. Paul told the Corinthians that they were not mere men. But here he begged the people that they were mere humans. Paul didn't want to be mistaken as a mere Greek god. It's better to be human than be an idol, because the bible says idols are nothing. But there's the point: the people saw that the apostles were no longer mere humans.
When Jesus demonstrated a true godly life, people started asking him who he thought he was. "Are you greater than our father Abraham...?" And he often had to just ignore the questions, because people like that do not really want the truth--they just hate hearing about true godliness and perfection (even believers get offended by that), especially when you teach about believers not being mere men. They love teachings that justify human frailty and rottenness and bad character and sin--and how God accepts them as they are forever and ever. "Some of them were obstinate, refusing to believe and even made fun of Jesus' ways in public. So Paul left them," (Acts 19). That's the best attitude vis-a-vis ridiculing and mocking.
Well, the more you meditate deeply about not being mere men, the more God's power is stirred up in and on you, changing you in ever increasing glory so that you become a more different creature daily. Thus, people say I am extreme--and get more extreme. They say my words get more unbelievable each day. Remember, Jesus is perfect God and man. When you receive him, you receive him 100 percent (not 50 percent, not even 99.99 percent) in your life, in your body. If Jesus is God and man, what does that make of you? Heaven forbids mere men to hear the answer now--but to be sure, you do not remain being mere human.
on God's Flesh
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