Episode 163

Disciple Up #163
Staying Sane in An Insane World – Thinking Biblically
By Louie Marsh, 6-10-2020

 How to stay sane?

 First Think Biblically

God calls disciples to think Biblically not culturally and not to simply follow my feelings or to go by my instincts. No, God calls all disciples to think clearly, critically (I mean analytically not to be critical of others).

18  “Come now, let us reason together, says the LORD: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool. Isaiah 1:18 (ESV)

We need to think like God thinks, to see the world as he does and then follow that truth.

People sometimes say, “The god I believe in …”  Perhaps the god you believe in isn’t the real, true and living God. And the only way to know for sure what he thinks is to consult, understand and depend upon the Bible.

C.S.Lewis: “If you do not listen to theology, that will not mean that you have no ideas about God. It will mean that you have a lot of wrong ones!”

Jesus shows us his authority in many places including the Sermon on the Mount when he repeatedly says, “You have heard it said but I say…”

To think like Jesus, to think Biblically means that you’ll really be different. Not different in a way that is considered cool, but different in a fundamental way that won’t be appreciated by many if not most people.

To really think Biblically I must to this:  21  but test everything; hold fast what is good. 1 Thessalonians 5:21 (ESV)

Test everything – especially things that make me feel good while sending me off in a slightly different direction in life.

This kind of testing, comparing everything to Scripture – needs to become a deeply ingrained habit that the disciple does automatically!

1  Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world. 1 John 4:1 (ESV)

An Example of Thinking Biblically

 34  But when the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together. 35  And one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question to test him. 36  “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” 37  And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. 38  This is the great and first commandment. 39  And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. 40  On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.” Matthew 22:34-40 (ESV)

1st Question: Who is my neighbor?

29  But he, desiring to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” 30  Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and he fell among robbers, who stripped him and beat him and departed, leaving him half dead. 31  Now by chance a priest was going down that road, and when he saw him he passed by on the other side. 32  So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33  But a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was, and when he saw him, he had compassion. 34  He went to him and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he set him on his own animal and brought him to an inn and took care of him. 35  And the next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper, saying, ‘Take care of him, and whatever more you spend, I will repay you when I come back.’ 36  Which of these three, do you think, proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell among the robbers?” 37  He said, “The one who showed him mercy.” And Jesus said to him, “You go, and do likewise.” Luke 10:29-37 (ESV)

Is this a command to love yourself?

2nd Question:  What is the command here?

A: To love my neighbor. This isn’t two commands – it’s ONE. The command is to love my neighbor.

The second part of this is an explanation of HOW we are to love our neighbor. People have always known there are different kinds of love. Love my dog, spouse, baseball, various unhealthy sweets etc.

“As yourself” explains that this command is for us to love our neighbor the way we normally LOVE OURSELVES. This selflove is assumed – NOT commanded. This type of self-love, or self-preservation as we’d probably call it, is noted throughout Scripture.

28 In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church, Ephesians 5: 28-29 (ESV)

Conclusion: This command is NOT a command to have high self-esteem. To make it say that is to twist the plain meaning of the text to fit into our modern therapeutic, psychologized world view. A view which did not exist prior to the last century and NEVER existed or was taught in the Bible.

Second Connect thinking to peace

4  Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. 5  Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; 6  do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7  And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

 8  Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. 9  What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you. Philippians 4:4-9 (ESV)

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Episode 157

Disciple Up #157
Wrestling with God, Sin & Self
By Louie Marsh, 4-29-2020

Thoughts on Perspective & Other People’s Struggles

Wrestling Against Sin & Satan:

12  For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Ephesians 6:12 (ESV)

3  Consider him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted. 4  In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood. 5  And have you forgotten the exhortation that addresses you as sons? “My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord, nor be weary when reproved by him. 6  For the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives.” Hebrews 12:3-6 (ESV)

Resisted (antikatestēte). Second aorist active indicative (intransitive) of the double compound antikathistēmi, old verb to stand in opposition against in line of battle, intransitively to stand face to face (anti) against (kata), here only in the N.T.

Unto blood (mechris haimatos). “Up to blood.” As was true of Jesus and many of the other heroes of faith in chapter Hebrews 11.

Striving (antagōnizomenoi). Present middle participle of antagōnizomai, old verb with the same figure in antikatestēte.

Against sin (pros hamartian). Face to face with sin as in Hebrews 12:1.

  • Word Pictures in the New Testament.

Wrestling – Greco-Roman Wrestling

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greco-Roman_wrestling

Greek Wrestling

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greek_wrestling

Greek wrestling (Greek: πάλη, translit. pálē), also known as Ancient Greek wrestling and Palé, was the most popular organized sport in Ancient Greece. A point was scored when one player touched the ground with his back, hip or shoulder, or conceding defeat due to a submission-hold or was forced out of the wrestling-area. Three points had to be scored to win the match.

One particularly important position in this form of wrestling was one where one of the contestants was lying on his abdomen with the other on his back trying to strangle him (back mount). The athlete on the bottom would try to grasp an arm of the one on top and turn him over onto his back while the athlete on top would try to complete the choke without being rolled.

Wrestling was the first competition to be added to the Olympic Games that was not a footrace. It was added in 708 B.C. The competitions were held in elimination-tournament style until one wrestler was crowned the victor. The wrestling area was one square plethron or stremma. This event was also part of the pentathlon. Wrestling was regarded as the best expression of strength out of all of the competitions and was represented in Greek mythology by Heracles

These are the rules of the ancient sport Palé

  • No intentional hitting or kicking is permitted
  • No gouging the eyes or biting is permitted
  • It is at the discretion of the referee whether or not twisting the fingers with the intention of forcing the opponent to concede defeat is permitted
  • Grasping the genitals is prohibited
  • All other holds intended to persuade the opponent to concede defeat through pain or fear are permitted and are an integral part of the contest
  • Infractions shall be punished by immediate whipping by the referee until the undesirable behavior is stopped
  • Three points must be scored to win the match
  • A point can be scored in any of three ways:
    • the opponent’s back touching the ground at any time
    • by the opponent tapping or in some other way making clear that he concedes defeat through pain or fear
    • by the opponent making contact with ground outside the allocated wrestling-match ground with any part of his body, or by being lifted and carried out
  • After scoring a point, the opponent must be given time to rise on his feet and a few moments more before the wrestling may continue
  • The match is both started and ended at the signal of the referee

Wrestling Against God (Self):

22  The same night he arose and took his two wives, his two female servants, and his eleven children, and crossed the ford of the Jabbok. 23  He took them and sent them across the stream, and everything else that he had. 24  And Jacob was left alone. And a man wrestled with him until the breaking of the day. 25  When the man saw that he did not prevail against Jacob, he touched his hip socket, and Jacob’s hip was put out of joint as he wrestled with him. Genesis 32:22-25 (ESV)

26  Then he said, “Let me go, for the day has broken.” But Jacob said, “I will not let you go unless you bless me.” 27  And he said to him, “What is your name?” And he said, “Jacob.” 28  Then he said, “Your name shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel, for you have striven with God and with men, and have prevailed.” 29  Then Jacob asked him, “Please tell me your name.” But he said, “Why is it that you ask my name?” And there he blessed him. 30  So Jacob called the name of the place Peniel, saying, “For I have seen God face to face, and yet my life has been delivered.” Genesis 32:26-30 (ESV)

31  The sun rose upon him as he passed Penuel, limping because of his hip. 32  Therefore to this day the people of Israel do not eat the sinew of the thigh that is on the hip socket, because he touched the socket of Jacob’s hip on the sinew of the thigh. Genesis 32:31-32 (ESV)

The Hebrew verb is translated “to wrestle.” There are no Semitic cognates of this verb to assist in translating, but the cognate of “dust” (HED #75) indicates it is something done on the ground
Complete Biblical Library Hebrew-English Dictionary – Aleph-Beth.

Wrestling For God:

28  Him we proclaim, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that we may present everyone mature in Christ. 29  For this I toil, struggling with all his energy that he powerfully works within me. Colossians 1:28-29 (ESV)

12  Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ Jesus, greets you, always struggling on your behalf in his prayers, that you may stand mature and fully assured in all the will of God. Colossians 4:12 (ESV)

17  Let the elders who rule well be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in preaching and teaching. 1 Timothy 5:17 (ESV)

12  We ask you, brothers, to respect those who labor among you and are over you in the Lord and admonish you, 1 Thessalonians 5:12 (ESV)

9  For you remember, brothers, our labor and toil: we worked night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you, while we proclaimed to you the gospel of God. 1 Thessalonians 2:9 (ESV)

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eighty-four

Disciple Up Show Notes #84
State of the Church
By Louie Marsh, 11-28-2018

The Three Main Stories Covered:

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/apr/24/atheist-pastor-canada-gretta-vosper-united-church-canada

https://www.christianitytoday.com/news/2018/november/christians-family-faith-pew-research-meaning.html

https://www.christianitytoday.com/news/2018/november/uk-state-of-theology-ligonier-british-evangelicals-dont-kno.html

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Episode 69

 

Disciple Up #69
Think & Believe SMALL!
By Louie Marsh, 8-15-2018

First Ever Disciple Up Give-A-Way – details later!

1) God loves small beginnings.

10  For whoever has despised the day of small things shall rejoice, and shall see the plumb line in the hand of Zerubbabel. “These seven are the eyes of the LORD, which range through the whole earth.” Zechariah 4:10 (ESV)

6  Then he said to me, “This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel: Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the LORD of hosts. 7  Who are you, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel you shall become a plain. And he shall bring forward the top stone amid shouts of ‘Grace, grace to it!’” Zechariah 4:6-7 (ESV)

The man who moves a mountain begins by carrying away small stones. – Confucius

2) God uses small (narrow) to accelerate our growth.

13  “Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. 14  For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few. Matthew 7:13-14 (ESV)

Small Beginnings Quotes:

https://www.goodreads.com/quotes/tag/small-beginnings

https://www.azquotes.com/quotes/topics/small-beginnings.html

“Thus out of small beginnings greater things have been produced by His hand that made all things of nothing, and gives being to all things that are; and, as one small candle may light a thousand, so the light here kindled hath shone unto many…”  ― William Bradford, Bradford: Of Plymouth Plantation

According to the ancient Chinese proverb, A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step. – John F. Kennedy

Think small and act small, and we’ll get bigger. Think big and act big, and we’ll get smaller. – Herb Kelleher (Herbert David “Herb” Kelleher is the co-founder, Chairman Emeritus and former CEO of Southwest Airlines.)

It all adds up; never discount your efforts, because small efforts build big things. One word doesn’t make a novel, but one word does begin a novel, and from that small beginning everything else follows. Even if it’s just ‘The’, write something on that blank page. – Laurell K. Hamilton

The world has been evolved, not created: it has arisen little by little from a small beginning, and has increased through the activity of the elemental forces embodied in itself, and so has rather grown than come into being at an almighty word. – August Weismann (August Friedrich Leopold Weismann was a German evolutionary biologist. Ernst Mayr ranked him as the second most notable evolutionary theorist of the 19th century, after Charles Darwin.)

3) God almost always works by starting small.

31  He put another parable before them, saying, “The kingdom of heaven is like a grain of mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his field. 32  It is the smallest of all seeds, but when it has grown it is larger than all the garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and make nests in its branches.” 33  He told them another parable. “The kingdom of heaven is like leaven that a woman took and hid in three measures of flour, till it was all leavened.” Matthew 13:31-33 (ESV)

4) A small open door from God is all anyone needs.

8  “‘I know your works. Behold, I have set before you an open door, which no one is able to shut. I know that you have but little power, and yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name. Revelation 3:8 (ESV)

5) In the end – even big is just a lot of small groups together

Saddleback just had it’s 50,000th baptism! Amazing.

Giving away one copy of The Grasshopper Myth, Big Churches, Small Churches and the small thinking that divides us. By Karl Vaters.

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Episode 61

Disciple Up #61
Thinking Biblically, Seek Not See God’s Face
By Louie Marsh, 6-20-2018


Intro – My second shot at this due to operator error and a COMMENT rolled in!  Thanks to Caressa, won’t mention her last name for privacy.

The articles:

https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/face-god-eye-beholder-researchers-say-n882491

http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0198745

Why would any Christian go along with this charade?

 Is our understanding of the Bible so weak that people don’t know or understand something this basic about our faith?

What Probably Happened

 People tend to go along with authority figures

What The Bible Says About God’s Face (hands, feet, etc.)

10  and they saw the God of Israel. There was under his feet as it were a pavement of sapphire stone, like the very heaven for clearness. Exodus 24:10 (ESV)

18  And he gave to Moses, when he had finished speaking with him on Mount Sinai, the two tablets of the testimony, tablets of stone, written with the finger of God. Exodus 31:18 (ESV)

11  Thus the LORD used to speak to Moses face to face, as a man speaks to his friend. When Moses turned again into the camp, his assistant Joshua the son of Nun, a young man, would not depart from the tent. Exodus 33:11 (ESV)

———————-

4  He will cover you with his pinions, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness is a shield and buckler. Psalm 91:4 (ESV)

1  “I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. John 15:1 (ESV)

7  So Jesus again said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. John 10:7 (ESV)

35  And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst. John 6:35 (KJV)

29  for our God is a consuming fire. Hebrews 12:29 (ESV)

16  In his right hand he held seven stars, from his mouth came a sharp two-edged sword, and his face was like the sun shining in full strength. Revelation 1:16 (ESV)

24 God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.” John 4:24 (ESV)

God is Invisible:

15  “Therefore watch yourselves very carefully. Since you saw no form on the day that the LORD spoke to you at Horeb out of the midst of the fire, Deuteronomy 4:15 (ESV)

17  To the King of the ages, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen. 1 Timothy 1:17 (ESV)

20  For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. Romans 1:20 (ESV)

Quotes On Being Made In the Image of God:

Quotes on God’s Image and Purpose for Humanity

“The most distinctive feature of the biblical understanding of man is the teaching that man has been created in the image of God.” – Anthony Hoekema

“There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. Nations, cultures, arts, civilizations – these are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub, and exploit.” – C. S. Lewis

“To live was to enjoy – when every faculty was in its perfection, amidst abundance of objects which infinite wisdom had purposely suited to it… when he was at full liberty to enjoy either the Creator or the creation – to indulge in rivers of pleasure, ever new, ever pure, from any mixture of pain.” – John Wesley

“Leave the works in one class. Consider one as good as another. Fear God, and be just, as has been said. And then do whatever comes before you. This way all will be well done even though it is no more than loading manure or driving a mule.” – Martin Luther

“This sense of being made in God’s image calls us all constantly to look for it in others and to do what we can to help them acknowledge it and to realize it by joining in worship. We thereby carry to others the answer to their inmost longing, a yearning for union with the Trinity, a thirst to respond with adoration to the God who made them.” – Marva Dawn

The only thing that counts:

14  And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. John 1:14 (ESV)

13  For even those who are circumcised do not themselves keep the law, but they desire to have you circumcised that they may boast in your flesh. 14  But far be it from me to boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. 15  For neither circumcision counts for anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creation. Galatians 6:13-15 (ESV)

Sermon link:

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Episode 25

Tim Keller Quote from last week:

“When you listen and read one thinker, you become a clone… two thinkers, you become confused… ten thinkers, you’ll begin developing your own voice… two or three hundred thinkers, you become wise and develop your voice.”

Disciples of Jesus have ONE and ONLY ONE Lord – Jesus.

But that does NOT mean we don’t need to listen to and learn from a multitude of others.

14  I do not write these things to make you ashamed, but to admonish you as my beloved children. 15  For though you have countless guides in Christ, you do not have many fathers. For I became your father in Christ Jesus through the gospel. 16  I urge you, then, be imitators of me. 17  That is why I sent you Timothy, my beloved and faithful child in the Lord, to remind you of my ways in Christ, as I teach them everywhere in every church. 18  Some are arrogant, as though I were not coming to you. 19  But I will come to you soon, if the Lord wills, and I will find out not the talk of these arrogant people but their power. 20  For the kingdom of God does not consist in talk but in power. 21  What do you wish? Shall I come to you with a rod, or with love in a spirit of gentleness? 1 Corinthians 4:14-21 (ESV)

10  I appeal to you, brothers, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same judgment. 11  For it has been reported to me by Chloe’s people that there is quarreling among you, my brothers. 12  What I mean is that each one of you says, “I follow Paul,” or “I follow Apollos,” or “I follow Cephas,” or “I follow Christ.” 13  Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul? 1 Corinthians 1:10-13 (ESV)

Those I Consider Disciplers

Watchman Nee

Dr. Walter Martin

Francis Shaffer

Rick Warren

Tim Keller

John Stott

CS Lewis

Chuck Smith

Personal friends including my father

“A man went into the ministry and said he was going to be original or nothing, and he was both.” – Rick Warren

The metaphor of dwarfs standing on the shoulders of giants (Latinnanos gigantum humeris insidentes) expresses the meaning of “discovering truth by building on previous discoveries”.[1] This concept has been traced to the 12th century, attributed to Bernard of Chartres. Its most familiar expression in English is by Isaac Newton in 1675: “If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.”[2]

 My advice to people today is as follows: if you take the game of life seriously, if you take your nervous system seriously, if you take your sense organs seriously, if you take the energy process seriously, you must turn on, tune in, and drop out. Timothy Leary
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/t/timothylea158268.html?src=t_advice

Like every great religion of the past we seek to find the divinity within and to express this revelation in a life of glorification and the worship of God. These ancient goals we define in the metaphor of the present — turn on, tune in, drop out.[3]

1  But I, brothers, could not address you as spiritual people, but as people of the flesh, as infants in Christ. 2  I fed you with milk, not solid food, for you were not ready for it. And even now you are not yet ready, 3  for you are still of the flesh. For while there is jealousy and strife among you, are you not of the flesh and behaving only in a human way? 4  For when one says, “I follow Paul,” and another, “I follow Apollos,” are you not being merely human? 5  What then is Apollos? What is Paul? Servants through whom you believed, as the Lord assigned to each. 6  I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. 7  So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth. 8  He who plants and he who waters are one, and each will receive his wages according to his labor. 9  For we are God’s fellow workers. You are God’s field, God’s building. 10  According to the grace of God given to me, like a skilled master builder I laid a foundation, and someone else is building upon it. Let each one take care how he builds upon it. 11  For no one can lay a foundation other than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12  Now if anyone builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw— 13  each one’s work will become manifest, for the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done. 14  If the work that anyone has built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward. 15  If anyone’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss, though he himself will be saved, but only as through fire. 1 Corinthians 3:1-15 (ESV)

The Disciple Up Low Down On Multiple POV’s

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Episode 4

 

Thinking Biblically

God calls disciples to think Biblically not culturally and not to simply follow my feelings or to go by my instincts. No, God calls all disciples to think clearly, critically (I mean analytically not to be critical of others).

18  “Come now, let us reason together, says the LORD: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool. Isaiah 1:18 (ESV)

We need to think like God thinks, to see the world as he does and then follow that truth.

People sometimes say, “The god I believe in …”  Perhaps the god you believe in isn’t the real, true and living God. And the only way to know for sure what he thinks is to consult, understand and depend upon the Bible.

C.S.Lewis: “If you do not listen to theology, that will not mean that you have no ideas about God. It will mean that you have a lot of wrong ones!”

To really think Biblically I must to this:  21  but test everything; hold fast what is good. 1 Thessalonians 5:21 (ESV)

Test everything – especially things that make me feel good while sending me off in a slightly different direction in life. This kind of testing, comparing everything to Scripture – needs to become a deeply ingrained habit that the disciple does automatically!

1  Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world. 1 John 4:1 (ESV)

Your Mind Matters by John Stott

An Example of Thinking Biblically

 34  But when the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together. 35  And one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question to test him. 36  “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” 37  And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. 38  This is the great and first commandment. 39  And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. 40  On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.” Matthew 22:34-40 (ESV)

1st Question: Who is my neighbor?

29  But he, desiring to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” 30  Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and he fell among robbers, who stripped him and beat him and departed, leaving him half dead. 31  Now by chance a priest was going down that road, and when he saw him he passed by on the other side. 32  So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33  But a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was, and when he saw him, he had compassion. 34  He went to him and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he set him on his own animal and brought him to an inn and took care of him. 35  And the next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper, saying, ‘Take care of him, and whatever more you spend, I will repay you when I come back.’ 36  Which of these three, do you think, proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell among the robbers?” 37  He said, “The one who showed him mercy.” And Jesus said to him, “You go, and do likewise.” Luke 10:29-37 (ESV)

2nd Question:  What is the command here?

A: To love my neighbor. This isn’t two commands – it’s ONE. The command is to love my neighbor.

The second part of this is an explanation of HOW we are to love our neighbor. People have always known there are different kind of love. Love my dog, spouse, baseball, various unhealthy sweets etc.

“As yourself” explains that this command is for us to love our neighbor the way we normally LOVE OURSELVES. This selflove is assumed – NOT commanded. This type of self-love, or self-preservation as we’d probably call it, is noted throughout Scripture.

28 In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church, Ephesians 5: 28-29 (ESV)

Conclusion: This command is NOT a command to have high self-esteem. To make it say that is to twist the plain meaning of the text to fit into our modern therapeutic, psychologized world view. A view which did not exist prior to the last century and NEVER existed or was taught in the Bible.

Closing

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Episode 2

The Disciple of Jesus VS Selfism

Being a disciple of Jesus is a radical departure from our culture of selfism. Selfism = believe in yourself, etc.

Will power becomes won’t power very quickly. Will power makes me self-absorbed.

 23  And he said to all, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. Luke 9:23 (ESV)

How does this square with Phil. 2:5-7:   “Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who though he was in the form of God did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant,”

But at the same time we’re told that “Where ever you go there you are,” and “You are your biggest problem.” So which is it? According to the greatest leader, thinker and teacher of all time – you need to become selfless!

Jesus says to listen to your doubts when you think I can’t do it, I’m not able. Because they are telling you the truth! You cannot save yourself and you cannot become like Christ by yourself. The main problem all of us face is more than psychological it is spiritual. Problems go beyond what any of us can deal with except God alone.

For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it. Luke 9:24

AA 1st Step: We admitted we were powerless over alcohol that our lives had become unmanageable. Christianity isn’t self-help – it is self-surrender, self-denial, dying to self and living to God.

Read moreEpisode 2