No enduring city

Man walking in abandoned futuristic city.

For here we do not have an enduring city, but we are looking for the city that is to come. Hebrews 13:14

Outside. Everything happens outside. Jesus died outside the camp. We go to meet Him outside the camp where He meets our disgrace with His grace. Once that’s happened and that grace has turned us outward toward others, why would we want to go back inside? Everybody’s out here. People inside already know, and they’re pretty much just sitting there. Outside is where the action is.

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Posted in end times, grace turned outward | Tagged | 1 Comment

Where grace meets disgrace

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And so Jesus also suffered outside the city gate to make the people holy through his own blood. Let us, then, go to him outside the camp, bearing the disgrace he bore. Hebrews 13:12-13

What happened?

According to this verse there is something disgraceful about meeting Jesus outside the camp. Did we miss something? Do you feel like you are walking around in a state of disgrace? I think we are trying everything we can to avoid disgrace.

Have we so bought into the American myth of success that we are attempting to “market” Christianity as helping make you wealthy, healthy, and successful, when none of that is guaranteed in the Bible? In fact, the truth is more likely to call us into failure in order to learn how to depend on Him. Failure is a far better teacher than success.

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Posted in Dealing with sin, forgiveness, God's love, grace, the gospel | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Breaking camp

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We have an altar from which those who minister at the tabernacle have no right to eat. Hebrews 13:10

An altar is a place of slaughter. The lamb or bull that was brought in as a sacrifice for sin would be slain on the altar and the blood was spread around in various places as the priests were directed in the Law of Moses. The remainder of the blood was poured out at the base of the altar. Certain parts of the animal were designated as food for the priests, the rest was taken out and burned outside the camp. Only the priests were allowed to handle this activity.

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Posted in Christianity and politics, Dealing with sin, forgiveness, the gospel | Tagged , | 3 Comments

Strengthened by grace

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It is good for our hearts to be strengthened by grace. Hebrews 13:9

Have you ever thought of grace as strengthening you heart? I haven’t until I asked my wife about this and she said, “Oh yes! It’s my only hope.”

As often happens, I need to find out what she’s talking about. Marti’s secular understanding of God is often truer to the truth than my evangelical one.

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Time to go

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Let us, then, go to Him outside the camp, bearing the disgrace He bore. Hebrews 13:13

Disgrace – noun – a person or thing regarded as shameful or unacceptable

Are you willing to be regarded as shameful or unacceptable by anyone — even everyone — but God? 

So, let’s go. It’s time to leave the soft, protective environment that Christians have spent 50 years and billions of dollars creating and go out into the world, “outside the camp,” where Christ has been all along. Time for us to join Him.

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Grace, starring Jesus

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Let us, then, go to him outside the camp, bearing the disgrace he bore. Hebrews 13:13

Here’s why it is so important for us to go outside the camp and bear the disgrace Jesus bore. Without that, people will get the wrong idea about us and about what a Christian is. 

Our lives are the canvas on which the gospel is painted. Will our picture tell the truth about ourselves, or will it lie? Will people see us as people like them who struggle, fail, do bad things, make mistakes and need forgiveness, or do they see us as a group that is too good to be part of? If you share in His disgrace, then grace makes sense. If you have no disgrace, then who needs grace? Christians who are doing just fine don’t have a message. Grace only makes sense to the disgraceful. 

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‘You really gotta get out more’

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Thanks to Sandy, Toni, Gail, Nick, John, Liz, Lyn, Phillip, Merlyn, Bob, Lisa and Jill for their comments on yesterday’s Catch. As Phillip pointed out, we are all very busy and don’t always get to all our emails so that some people don’t respond just because they never saw it. I realize that, and that is why, when I think I have something very important for everyone to see, I will repeat it or mention it in subsequent emails. This is one of those times so if you haven’t read yesterday’s Catch, please do so, and please include your comments on line or to me privately by replying to any Catch sent to you by email.  Continue reading

Posted in Dealing with sin, grace, Worldview | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Bearing the disgrace

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Let us, then, go to Him outside the camp, bearing the disgrace He bore. Hebrews 13:13

Here is just a part of the disgrace Jesus bore outside the camp:

He was crucified as a common criminal.

He was mocked, flogged and spit upon by the Roman soldiers.

He had no place to be buried until His body was claimed

The soldiers cast lots for His only possession: his robe.

He was ridiculed by the people.

He was powerless in His death.

He carried His own cross through the city before a jeering crowd. “Save yourself, Jesus! Where are your angels now, Jesus?”

(This part you couldn’t see except that it killed Him:) He became sin.

He was forsaken by His friends and followers.

He was forsaken by His Father.

He had all the look of a total loser.

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Posted in grace turned outward, Hope | Tagged , | 18 Comments