Saturday, January 15, 2011

Stages of Development Repost

The following is another chapter from [Bittersweet Refinements].  Since each part is connected to the rest, it would do you well to keep reading (and listening for our Heavenly Father's explanations, of course).

Stages of Development

Concerning him we have much to say, and {it is} hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing.  For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you have need again for someone to teach you the elementary principles of the oracles of God, and you have come to need milk and not solid food.  For everyone who partakes {only} of milk is not accustomed to the word of righteousness, for he is an infant.  But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil.  Therefore leaving the elementary teaching about the Christ, let us press on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God, of instruction about washings and laying on of hands, and the resurrection of the dead and eternal judgment.  And this we will do, if God permits. [Hebrews 5:11-6:3 NAS]

No, this is not meant for everyone[1].  For it all depends upon what our Heavenly Father wants to accomplish in and through someone[2] that determines when, and to what extent, He will allow and enable them to enter into the knowledge and understanding of His absolute truth[3].

It is, however, meant for a lot more than want it to be.  For far too many are well content with the knowledge of already having everything that they need in Christ Jesus[4] without having any idea just what that really means[5]—nor having any desire to learn[6].

No, this has nothing at all to do with us earning our keep.  For it is written: For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.  For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them. [Ephesians 2:8-10 NAS]

On the other hand, it does have everything to do with the kind of relationship that our Heavenly Father wants to have with His children by faith[7].  For to think that there is nothing more to it after accepting Christ Jesus as being your own personal Lord and Savior is like a wife thinking that there is nothing more to her marriage after the wedding vows have been exchanged.

Alas, have we not been given written confirmation of this?  Yes, we most certainly have been.  For it is written: “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener.  He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.  You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you.  Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.  I am the vine; you are the branches.  If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.  If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned.  If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you.  This is to my Father's glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.” [John 15:1-8 NIV]

Needless to say, none of that should be taken as a threat.  For it is meant for the benefit of all concerned[8].

It does, however, involve some things that are naturally unsettling[9], and not the least of these has to do with coming to terms with the realities of our situations in this world.  For it is written: I am the man who has seen affliction by the rod of his wrath.  He has driven me away and made me walk in darkness rather than light; indeed, he has turned his hand against me again and again, all day long.  He has made my skin and my flesh grow old and has broken my bones.  He has besieged me and surrounded me with bitterness and hardship.  He has made me dwell in darkness like those long dead.  He has walled me in so I cannot escape; he has weighed me down with chains.  Even when I call out or cry for help, he shuts out my prayer.  He has barred my way with blocks of stone; he has made my paths crooked.  Like a bear lying in wait, like a lion in hiding, he dragged me from the path and mangled me and left me without help.  He drew his bow and made me the target for his arrows.  He pierced my heart with arrows from his quiver.  I became the laughingstock of all my people; they mock me in song all day long.  He has filled me with bitter herbs and sated me with gall.  He has broken my teeth with gravel; he has trampled me in the dust.  I have been deprived of peace; I have forgotten what prosperity is.  So I say, "My splendor is gone and all that I had hoped from the LORD.”  I remember my affliction and my wandering, the bitterness and the gall.  I well remember them, and my soul is downcast within me.  Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.  They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.  I say to myself, "The LORD is my portion; therefore I will wait for him."  The LORD is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him; it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD.  It is good for a man to bear the yoke while he is young.  Let him sit alone in silence, for the LORD has laid it on him.  Let him bury his face in the dust—there may yet be hope.  Let him offer his cheek to one who would strike him, and let him be filled with disgrace.  For men are not cast off by the Lord forever.  Though he brings grief, he will show compassion, so great is his unfailing love.  For he does not willingly bring affliction or grief to the children of men.  To crush underfoot all prisoners in the land, to deny a man his rights before the Most High, to deprive a man of justice—would not the Lord see such things?  Who can speak and have it happen if the Lord has not decreed it?  Is it not from the mouth of the Most High that both calamities and good things come? [Lamentations 3:1-38 NIV]

Yes, the rest of the passage goes on about being justly punished for sins[10], and this is exactly what is going on in far too many cases[11].  For there are times when we do bring more hardships down upon ourselves than would be absolutely necessary to accomplish our Heavenly Father’s purposes[12].

Nonetheless, that does not discount the absolute truth of the matter truly being that there would not be any hardships of any kind to our lives in this world if it was not for it being in accordance to our Heavenly Father’s will.  For it is also written: I am the LORD, and there is none else, there is no God beside me: I girded thee, though thou hast not known me: That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me.  I am the LORD, and there is none else.  I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things. [Isaiah 45:5-7 KJV]

No, there is no way of getting around it.  For what did all of those children (most being of His own chosen people[13]) who died in Nazi gas chambers during the Holocaust do to deserve their plight?

Yes, many would argue that it was just a result of being born into a fallen world.  Some would even go as far as to insist that it was because of being Jewish, but what choice did they have—either way[14]?

No, there is nothing to be gained by ignoring what has been made so very obvious[15].  In fact, there is actually much to be lost—and not just in regards to integrity, neither[16].  For the more it is made clear that our Heavenly Father truly is responsible for ALL that happens, the more satisfaction He can receive.  For it takes a very special kind of love to want to still be with someone who appears to have done you much harm[17].

Yes, it naturally sounds rather crass (to put it mildly), but when all that our Heavenly Father has endured[18], even going as far as to experience the spiritual death of a full and equal part of Himself[19], is added to the mix, a much weightier issue must be considered.  For why would He subject Himself to all that He has (not to mention us) unless it was worth it[20]?

No, I cannot naturally blame anyone for being reluctant to accept these things[21].  For ignorance is bliss when it comes to such[22], but the time has come for a great, great many to grow up[23].

{1}Matthew 13:10-12; {2}Philippians 2:13; {3}1 Corinthians 2:6-16; {4}1 Corinthians 1:4-9; {5}1 Corinthians 3:1-3; {6}Luke 9:23-26; {7}John 15:15; {8}Jeremiah 29:11; {9}John 15:18-25; {10}Lamentations 3:39-66; {11}Colossians 3:25; {12}James 1:2-4; {13}Genesis 17:1-21; {14}Job 5:7; {15}Luke 12:1-3; {16}Matthew 25:14-30; {17}Job 1:21-22; {18}Genesis 6:6-7; {19}Matthew 27:46; {20}Romans 8:15-39; {21}James 1:5-8; {22}Ecclesiastes 1:18; {23}1 Corinthians 13:11.
Please Also Visit: [FishHawk Droppings]


  1. A very interesting read today. This one seemed to speak to me in many ways.
    I could be sadly mistaken (as I have been in the past) but I do believe that at this very moment in my life I am exactly where I was meant to be.

  2. Thanks for stopping by again, my dear Ann!!! The key is not taking too much granted. For on Judgment Day, many who wanted to believe that they were doing just fine will be reminded of how many times they ignored His call to grow--both for His glory and their own benefit.

  3. after your email I had to come back to read what it was that I After all it was quite early when I left the first comment. You couldn't be more right about taking things for granted. I guess I just meant that I feel like I'm at least headed in the right direction for a change. Such as learning to live and let live, let go and let God. Rest assured my friend that I never take any offense to any of your comments and I always find them quite amusing and entertaining.

  4. Thanks for stopping by again, my dear Ann!!! Thank you for being so understanding.

  5. "For what did all of those children (most being of His own chosen people[13]) who died in Nazi gas chambers during the Holocaust do to deserve their plight?"

    Genesis 1: 27. He created us in His image, which means that we have the ability to change His world. He voluntarily gave some of His authority to us, for as long as He chooses to give such authority. It does not say we are the only thing He gave such to, in fact Job 38-41 would outright dismiss that claim, but we are included in His deputies, deputized with free will from Him.

    God does not want a world where He rules as an autocrat, rather He has chosen a kind of constitutionalism for Himself, for no other clear reason then His love of freedom. The only difference between His constitutionalism and what we humans would create is His veto cannot be overriden, rather this balance only exists while He wants it.

    But that's just it, HE DOES WANT IT! There could never be anything so clear.

    I also think, and I know many Christians disagree with me but here it is, that science, far from undermining God, has actually clarified many of the mysteries of faith, in particular the pecuiliar paradox (viewed by some falsely as a contradiction) that humans are both free in will, and in some aspects predestined, which has been explained by DNA and genetics. A man can only do as well as his ability permits, and that ability, like many things, was determined by outside forces beyond your will.

  6. Thanks for stopping by again, my dear Jeremy!!! No, it is not that we are nothing more than just puppets on His string, but the absolute truth of the matter truly is that what freewill we do have is extremely limited. For it is only in regards to the choice that we given to make as to whether or not we want to truly be one of His children by faith, which most certainly includes full acceptance of His only begotten Son, who truly is the Lord Jesus Christ, as our own personal Lord and Savior, that we can be confident of actually having freewill. In regards to the rest of the choices that we are faced with, our freewill is akin to giving us enough rope to hang ourselves.

    Please, be assured that I am all too painfully aware of just how naturally difficult that is to swallow. For I was raised to believe that we are all given the knowledge and abilities to run our own lives, and what problems we face after we reach our own ages of accountability are usually the result of our own foolishness.

    In other words, God has nothing to do with our problems. For He is up there, and we are down here for at least the time being. All of that changed when our Heavenly Father started making Himself real to me, and started allowing me to see things through His eyes.

  7. I disagree, and I don't really understand why so many Christians take such a cynical view of such a beautiful thing.

  8. I also would say that Matthew 25 paints a very different picture of Gods priorities.

    And actually Fishhawk, if anything the choice to follow Him is something we have NO Freewill over:

    "Truly I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven." (Matthew 18: 18, NIV)

    Honestly I think you might have gotten this one perfectly upside down Fishhawk.

  9. In fact FishHawk, I'm going to take a step further, I'm going to go as far as to say that the entire purpose of Christ, when you get right down to it, is proving just how WRONG you are in this regard, that in point of fact, and yes it's very surprising, God actually does care about human beings, God actually does care about what you do, and no, God is not especially fond of evil, but He made us in His image, and then we discovered good and evil, and the place he had made for us was disrupted, and from there, all the other deputizations and freedoms began spinning out of controls.

    There would always have been hardship, and in fact, not all hardship is evil. Christ said that the laws and the prophets are built upon love, and one cannot dispute the love of a shewolf feeding her cub from the baby mink in her mouth, diced against her teeth. And we can't understand all of this, and yes, one mans (or animals) free will does interfere with anothers, obviously, but that doesn't mean the love, the value, and a cherishing beyond your imagination aren't there.

    See, God created evil because He created free will and the ability to fall, and he suffered profoundly, finally resulting in the crucifiction of His own son, and that is exactly how beautiful and precious God considers free will. This, FishHawk, is the only thing GOD has ever sacrificed for. Everything else came easy to Him, as it would.

    So you see FishHawk:

    "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing." (Matthew 23: 37, NIV)

  10. I must admit that I am somewhat confused about what you are really getting at my dear Jeremy. For at first, I thought that you were basing your contention upon the premise that our Heavenly Father is just vastly superior to us, but not actually all-powerful, all-knowing and always-present. I am not so sure about that now, however. For I hear hints of hyper-Calvinsim in you saying that we do not have a choice in following Christ Jesus, but that would deny Him the ultimate satisfaction of us wanting to love Him freely--would it not?

    Maybe it would be helpful to say that what our Heavenly Father has given me could be called, Refined Theology, in such terms. For it is meant to finish what was started with the Reformation and bridge the gap between Calvinsim and Armenianism. For both sides have gotten some things right while getting other things very wrong

    This is especially true in regards to our freewill, and you are very right about our Heavenly Father wanting us to want to be with Him as opposed to Him forcing us to against our will. Therefore, the hyper-Calvinists cannot be right about us having no choice about where we will spend all of eternity, but the Armenians take our freewill way too far in regards to everything else. For it is written: The lot is cast into the lap, but the decision is wholly of the Lord (even the events that seem accidental are really ordered by Him). {Proverbs 16:33 AMP}

    Part 1 of 2

  11. Part 2 of 2

    Please, my dear Jeremy, I implore you to read as much of what is contained on FishHawk Droppings as you can possibly stand. For what is in this particular post is the 27th Chapter of the third book in line there, and what comes before sets the stage for what comes after.

    A direct link to FishHawk Droppings is included at the end of every post here, and the first book in line might answer a lot of your questions about me--either way. For it is an abbreviated account of my life so far, and the last two crumbs (chapters), starts getting into our Heavenly Father making Himself real to me--as opposed to just being a character in a book.

    P.S.: Just in case you may think that I no longer hold any respect for our Heavenly Father's Holy Bible, be assured that I most certainly do. For it truly does contain the sum-total of His Holy Scriptures, but what He has personally revealed to me is that they were given to serve as written confirmation of what He Himself wants to personally reveal unto each and every one of us, on an individual basis and without exception--not as a book of instruction in His absence.


Since the Blogger spam filter has been found sorely lacking lately, I will start moderating comments. Be assured that I am only interested in deleting spam. So, if you feel a need to take me to task over something—even anonymously, go ahead and let 'er rip, and I will publish it as soon as I can.