Jesus is not anti-security or anti-wall!
Apparently the Pope is! At at least as it pertains to us and not him! He lives behind a huge wall, literally and metaphorically! He believes if you believe in a wall you cannot be a Christian. Okay?
The Pope believes he is the Vicar of Christ. I mean no ill toward the Pope or anyone who is Catholic, but he is not the Vicar of Christ and he is not the head of Christ’s Church. But that is another blog! Stay with me though and you may discover why the Pope feels it is okay for him to live behind a huge wall and restrict access to his domain.
I have been accused on many occasions of being black and white and that I am dangerous as a result of it. Those accusations are accurate, just not in the context of how they have been used. I am dangerous to the status quo of rote religiosity and unhealthy requirements to tow a company line that Jesus the Christ has not given me to tow.
Let’s take a stroll down memory lane!
“3 Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. 4 And God saw the light, that it was good; and God divided the light from the darkness. 5 God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. So the evening and the morning were the first day.” [Genesis 1]
Several things jump out at me as I read this text again.
- God said let there be light and there was light!
- God did not say let there be darkness! Why?
- I believe I know but I want you to think about that question.
- God saw the light and said that it [the light] was good!
- God saw the darkness but He did not call it good! Why?
- Again, I want you to think about the question.
- God divided the light from the darkness! Why?
- Once again I want you to think!
- God called the light ‘day’ [hot]!
- God called the dark ‘night’ [to twist, to roll back and away from the light. Or, the opposite of hot which is cold]!
Are you following me here? If not follow on with me!
14 “And to the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write, ‘These things says the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God: 15 I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot. 16 So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth.” [Revelation 3]
There must be a clear delineation so that God, and people can know exactly where we stand on important issues that relate to heaven and earth! Lukewarmness is an affront to God and those who will not make a clear stand in the light [hot] or the dark [cold] must repent or be spewed [puked, vomited] out of Jesus’s mouth!
To be intellectually honest I see at least two meanings here:
First and foremost, Laodicea sat between an area of hot springs and an area of cold mountain bodies of water. Both of these two places were known for their refreshing and therapeutic characteristics. So, if we are not refreshing and therapeutic then we are in danger of being vomit. That is the context of what Jesus is saying in this text.
Two, you have to decide what you are going to be and where you are going to stand. I find it interesting in the Book of Beginnings [Genesis] and the Book of Revealings [Revelation of Christ] we find references to hot [day] and cold [night] as it pertains to a clear delineation of our posture, position and representation of Jesus Christ.
Therefore, in the Revelation text darkness as it pertains to displeasing God is living in compromise where you are unwilling to make a stand that is clear cut, consistent and capable of being helpful to others looking for and needing refreshing and healing.
Jesus is not into allowing our being abused unnecessarily!
“But I say to you, do not resist an evil person; but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also.” [Matthew 5:39]
But wait just one minute. How did Jesus respond when He was slapped at His mock trial?
22 And when He had said these things, one of the officers who stood by struck Jesus with the palm of his hand, saying, “Do You answer the high priest like that?” 23 Jesus answered him, “If I have spoken evil, bear witness of the evil; but if well, why do you strike Me?” [John 18]
Did you notice the obvious in what Jesus said and did not say? Jesus said there are times when “slaps” are not appropriate. In His case at that time it was not appropriate for the officers to slap Him. So He did not turn His cheek and take another blow!
Jesus said, “If I did not speak evil [a falsehood] why did you slap Me?” It is a fair question to ask was He inferring a “righteous” slap would have been appropriate?
“Faithful are the wounds of a friend, but deceitful are the kisses of an enemy.” [Proverbs 27:6]
I believe Jesus was also inferring that we don’t have to just stand by and get slapped because someone wants to wound, hurt and or offend us. This was a religious trial that was not legal according to the Jewish law. Jesus defended His position and did not turn the other cheek.
When Jesus stood before Pilate and was being interrogated by him Jesus did not “stand down.” He spoke truth to the one [Pilate] who believed he was in charge of that conversation.
Yet, later when He was being mocked and abused [slapped] by the Romans He did turn the other cheek. That was part of God’s redemptive plan for man!
I have been slapped by people when I needed it and I have been slapped by people when it was not justified.
I have been wounded by friends when I needed it and I have been kissed by enemies disguised as friends when I did not deserve it! Some of the most vocal “Amener’s” have been some of the most vehement and violent “slappers”.
We need to know when to justify our position and when to turn the other cheek!
“When you are persecuted in one city flee to the next.” [MT 10:23]
“15 Therefore when you see the abomination of desolation which was spoken of through Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place (let the reader understand), 16 then those who are in Judea must flee to the mountains.” [MT 24]
These texts indicate Jesus did not want His people [followers, disciples, brothers and sisters according to God’s redemptive plan] to die foolishly or prematurely, in the upcoming and impending destruction of Jerusalem.
“But the king was enraged, and he sent his armies and destroyed those murderers and set their city on fire.” [MT 22:7]
This is a prophetic parable revealing the impending destruction of Jerusalem, Judaism and the unrepentant people in the city. Jesus is saying once again, as He did all through the Old Testament, that God [the king] would send [use] foreign invaders to destroy the Jewish people because of their arrogance and absolute rebellion against the king [Him].
“And Jesus said to them [His followers, disciples, brothers and sisters according to God’s plan of redemption], ‘Do you not see all these things? Assuredly, I say to you, not one stone shall be left here upon another, that shall not be thrown down.’” [MT 24:2]
The reason for this prophetic revelation was because the Jewish people had reached the tipping point of rebellion against God and Jesus was responding to and answering specific questions from the disciples He called and trained for 3 1/2 years.
What if the Jews [all the house of Israel, not just a small remnant] had repented of their conspiracy to kill Jesus?
What if they as a nation had accepted Jesus as the Savior of the world?
Would the Romans have still come and slaughtered over 1 million Jews, destroyed Jerusalem and the hallowed Temple, and torn down that wall?
We will never know!
If Jesus was anti wall then why didn’t He say, “Do you see that wall? I don’t like it or what it represents. So, I am going to give you My closest allies a plan to bring it down just like I brought down the wall of Jericho!”
The only reason that wall came down was because of the absolute arrogance of those who hid behind it. It was not an impediment to what Jesus was there to do or would ever do.
If a wall is built in the USA to provide a safe boundary for the citizens to live in peace and real productivity, Jesus will not be upset and His purposes for the USA and the world will not be encumbered in any way! To insinuate otherwise is simply arrogance on display!
By the way, the New Jerusalem, the Heavenly City, the Bride of Christ, has a huge wall and only 12 gates.
2 And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband. 10 And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me the holy city, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, 11 having the glory of God. Her brilliance was like a very costly stone, as a stone of crystal-clear jasper. 12 It had a great and high wall, with twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels; and names were written on them, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the sons of Israel. 13 There were three gates on the east and three gates on the north and three gates on the south and three gates on the west. 14 And the wall of the city had twelve foundation stones, and on them were the twelve names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.”[Revelation 21:2; 10-14]
And God will not allow anyone or anything unholy into His walled city.
“And nothing unclean, and no one who practices abomination and lying, shall ever come into it, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life.” [Revelation 21:27]
To me, it is absolutely ridiculous for religious people and especially religious leaders to insinuate God would not be pleased with the government of the USA’s attempts to secure our borders even if it meant building a wall with limited number of gates to control entry into and exiting out of this wonderful land.
And just in case you are not sure of what I feel, believe or where I stand on this critical issue – I am over the mockers in ministry who think that love means not having conditions to being in relationship with God or other people, and especially Christian people.
My goodness folks, read the Bible without preconceived and predetermined biases.
God has always had conditions to relationship!
Read the Bible slow!
Read the Bible as if you have never read it before or ever heard someone teach it before!
Read it like the Berean believers in Acts 17! They received the taught word with gladness but searched the Scriptures themselves to see if what was being taught as truth was true!
And please, develop critical thinking! I am not talking about having a critical spirit or giving yourself over to criticism. I am talking about being able to think for yourself and not blindly follow someone because you are in agreement with what they say or teach because that is what you have been taught to do.
Stop following those who tell what to think! Find someone who will teach you how to think!
Just because you agree with what your favorite teacher says is true does not mean what you believe to be true is truth.
I learned that lesson the hard way! I learned that you can honor man [authority] and dishonor God and that you may have to disobey man in order to honor God. The tension is in the knowing which is appropriate!
The church suffers from the Moses syndrome – “Moses, go up on the mountain and hear what God is saying and then come down and tell us what He said.”
You are responsible for your own self!
Dr. Kevin M. Drury, DMin
Keep HIS Passion! Keep HIS Purpose! Keep HIS Faith!