Sunday, May 13, 2012
The selling of personal possessions and the distribution of goods to those in need was not the First Commandment of the first congregation. This behavior was not the result of a carefully crafted three-point sermon by one of the power preachers. I doubt there was a call to the altar so the believers could repent of their greed and materialism. This short verse seems to capture the instinctive essence of a people who are driven by the presence of a new filtering system. The fullness of the Spirit of God generated a perspective that when believed in, generated the kind of behaviors described. It is inevitable. The culture in which these believers lived probably frowned on the relinquishment of property and possessions. So the life of a faith-filled believer in Jesus inevitably and lovingly transcended the cultural setting in which they lived. A new and more powerful operating system had been installed by God. The believers were still living in the same community with the same friends and family but were now citizens of a transcendently better kingdom. I live in America and there are cultural identities that are strong. Evidence, however, that I have pledged allegiance to King Jesus will be seen in how I live from a new and improved filter of faith in God and belief in Jesus. It will look selfless and probably counter cultural.
Sunday, May 6, 2012
First of all, while the blind man might've been satisfied to see people better than he ever had (as "trees"), Jesus wanted his vision to be clear and to see others as he sees them. It would seem to many of us are willing to accept "better than before" but fail to allow Jesus to complete his desire for us. Secondly, why would Jesus instruct the newly envisioned man to not enter the village? The village had only known him as blind and perhaps would not know how to accept him as envisioned. Perhaps this is why I sense Jesus saying to me to not go back to the "church-village" as it will not accept my new status granted me by Jesus. The "village" is full of of good and well-intended lovers of God. Unfortunately, people struggle to accept the inexplicable and the different. An envisioned person who had a place in the village as a blind person disrupts to the point of either rejection by the village or discouraging doubt as to the reality of "seeing" on the part of the healed one. A new vision may need a new village. Something to consider...