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PENTECOST AND THE TEMPLE OF GOD, BY KIANG P LEE

Pentecost is the most marvelous festival in the Christian calendar which sits at the pivotal point in the Christian journey. It is an extraordinary day because it is the day which signifies a believer’s spiritual rebirth from the fallen ‘Adamic humanity,’ and being reborn into the new risen ‘Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus Himself, the second Adam. (1 Cor.15:45)

Light, Peace, Hope, Pentecost, Sunbeam
Pentecost – New Spirit, New Birth, New Human (Rom.8:29) (Pixabay)

Jesus said this to the people who were gathered for a festival, “Whoever believes in Me, as the Scriptures have said, river of living waters will flow from within them. By this he meant the Spirit” (John 7:38-39). What is a river? A river is an attractant for people because it is a place where they can flourish and be sustained indefinitely by the river’s waters. Ancient civilizations have been established along mighty rivers – the Nile, Euphrates, Yangtze, Ganges, Amazon, Mississippi, Thames, etc.

The greatest river is spiritual in nature. That is the role of the Holy Spirit – to give the spiritual life-giving waters for the sustenance to humanity who have received Jesus as Savior. Peter made this transference and diffusion of the Spirit to humans through Jesus’ mediation plain when he said, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Act.2:38).

This was Peter’s message to the people as they celebrated Pentecost on that momentous day when this astounding prophecy of Joel came to pass in Jerusalem when the Spirit was poured out upon the disciples and believers, one hundred and twenty in all. Soon after, three thousand more people were added by Peter’s message of reconciliation. (Act.2:41; Joel 2:28-29)

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The Spirit will not and cannot enter human life unless and until a human being “repents and is baptized.” What does this phrase mean, “repent and be baptized?” To repent means to acknowledge one’s past life of existing in the sin-condition of the fallen ‘Adamic humanity.’ The ‘Adamic humanity’ is the fallen sin-conditioned humanity of Adam mankind inherited from his first sin in Eden. It is diametrically opposite to the ‘Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus. He is the second Adam God gave for mankind’s redemption and restoration. (1 Cor.15:45; Isa.7:14; Matt.1:22-23; John 3:16-17)

Secondly, to be baptized means to be inducted (initiated, installed, and ordained) into the new triune life of God through Christ His Son in the Spirit’s power. We read Jesus instructed His followers, “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing (inducting) them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Matt.28:19, italics my emphasis). To be inducted into the divine life is to live the ‘Triune Life*”. (To know more about the ‘Triune Life’ please read my post titled, “Our Human Response In The “Triune Life” of God,“ at: http://bulamanriver.net/9199).

Jesus Baptized By John The Baptist in The Jordan River And Inaugurating The Gift Of The Holy Spirit Symbolized By The Dove.

Paul said this about our baptism following Jesus’ own template of repentance and forgiveness by John the Baptist in the Jordan River. (Matt.3:13-17)

To the Roman believers, he said saliently, “Don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? We were therefore buried with Him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. For if we have been united with Him in a death like His, we will certainly also be united with Him in a resurrection like His” (Rom.6:3-5).

Yes, to be baptized means to die to and bury our fallen ‘Adamic humanity’ from Adam in the watery grave of baptism through Jesus’ cross. Then rising up and out of the watery grave into the new resurrected life of Christ’s ‘Immanuel humanity,’ the second Adam, and unified with the one triune God. (1 Cor.15:45; Matt.28:19) Jesus’ ‘Immanuel humanity’ means the ‘God with us’ human life that’s inspired by the resurrected Christ in the Spirit’s power. (Matt.1:23; Isa.7:14)

Our Baptism Follows The Template Of Jesus’ Own Baptism (Wiki Commons)

In the new spiritual birth, humans become and receive Jesus’ new ‘Immanuel humanity,’ displacing and replacing the sin-conditioned fallen ‘Adamic humanity’ of Adam in Eden. Jesus gave his followers a rather weird prerequisite for becoming a follower. He said, “Very truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day. For My flesh is real food and My blood is real drink. Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood remains in Me, and I in them. Just as the living Father sent Me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on Me will live because of Me. (John 6:53-57).

Jesus was speaking metaphorically, not literal cannibalism as His listeners assumed. Later, Jesus used the emblem of bread and wine to convey what He meant. John records, “Jesus took bread, and when He had given thanks, He broke it and gave it to His disciples, saying, “Take and eat; this is My body.” Then, He took wine and said, “Drink from it, all of you. This is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins” (Matt.26:26-28).

The terms “flesh and blood,” and “bread and wine,” were metaphors to convey the truth of the second Adam, the new ‘Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus that is God’s gift to humanity. (John 3:16; 1 Cor.15:45) Paul said, “If anyone is in Christ, the new creation (Immanuel human) has come: The old (Adamic human) has gone, the new is here!” (2 Cor.5:17, italics mine for emphasis).

So recapping, “to repent” means to give up and forsake the sin-conditioned fallen ‘Adamic humanity’ of the first Adam, and “be baptize” means to be inducted and installed into the new ‘Immanuel humanity’ of the resurrected Jesus, the second Adam, and unified in the one triune life of God. (1 Cor.15:45) Through Jesus’ glorified humanity, mankind is made to live the Triune Life* in the Father, Son, and Spirit. (Matt.28:19)

So, Jesus is the One who gives passage for the Spirit to enter and renew humanity in Jesus’ ‘Immanuel humanity’ and the Triune Life*. Notice, “But very truly I tell you, it is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you” (John 16:7, NLT). Jesus said this knowing of His impending death on the cross to redeem mankind. Recall, Adam had cutoff humanity’s connection and communion with the Spirit as symbolized by the ‘Tree of Life’ in Eden.

Our First Parents Evicted From Eden Due to Sin, And an Angel Stood in The Way to The Tree of Life, Representing The Holy Spirit (Wiki Commons)

Note, after Adam had sinned, the Bibles says this, “After sending them (Adam and Eve) out (of Eden), the Lord God stationed mighty cherubim to the east of the Garden of Eden. And He placed a flaming sword that flashed back and forth to guard the way to the tree of life (Holy Spirit)” (Gen.3:24). So, humanity was cutoff from the Holy Spirit because of Adam’s sin against God. It was left for the second Adam (Jesus) to make this all-important vital connection to the Spirit and to the Tri-Personal Being of God. (Matt.28:19)

What happens when the Spirit comes and makes His abode in a human life? Paul answers, “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God?” (1 Cor.6:19). Yes, the Spirit’s presence in a person makes him/her the very temple of the living God. In this, God’s following prophecy comes to pass, “As God has said: “I will dwell with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be My people” (2 Cor.6:16). Yes, individually and collectively, humans have become the very temple God has sought to erect and live in upon earth.

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A Rendition of Solomon’s Temple Where God Is Present in The Holy Place (Wiki Commons)

The temple Moses built in the wilderness under God’s instruction, and subsequently Solomon’s magnificent temple in Israel, was picturing the spiritual temple of the hearts of saved humanity. God lives in His magnificent divine temple in Israel, were picture of the true temple in heaven and His spiritual temple on earth, the inner sanctum of the hearts and minds of saved humanity. Once we live this life in the Spirit then we are living in harmony with creation and the universal order as divinely conferred upon Adam at creation. (Gen.1:26-31)

We saw earlier Jesus compared the Holy Spirit as a riving of living waters. (John 7:38-39) This metaphor is symbolic of the Holy Spirit’s cleansing activity in human life. If the Spirit’s “living water” is always flowing, then He never leaves a void in humans but fills every aspect of our lives. What is the Spirit’s cleansing activity? What does He do in each of us as His vessel, His temple? Paul documents this in his letter to the Corinthians as he expounds about God’s Love as expressed through His Spirit. (1 Cor. 13; Also Gal. 5:22-23; Rom. 12:9-21).

God’s Love is the peaceful flow of the Spirit’s life in humans through His Love fruits. Paul tells us what they are: it is, *the fruit of patience, *the fruit of kindness, *the fruit of contentedness, *the fruit of being modest and unboastful, *the fruit of humility, *the fruit of honor, *the fruit of unselfishness, *the fruit of calmness and dignity, *the fruit of forgiveness and compassion, *the fruit of delighting in good and shunning evil, *the fruit of tolerance, *the fruit of responsibility, *the fruit of enduring hope, *the fruit of steadfast perseverance, *the fruit of joy, *the fruit of peace, *the fruit of goodness, *the fruit of faith, *the fruit of gentleness, *the fruit of self-control, *the fruit of zeal and spiritual fervor, *the fruit of friendship, *the fruit of sharing and generosity, *the fruit of prayerfulness, *the fruit of hospitality, etc. (1 Cor.13)

The River of Living Waters – Metaphor for The Spirit’s Cleansing Power Through The Fruits of Love (1 Cor.13)

All these and other Love-fruits and traits of the Spirit spells one thing: they spell the actions and emotions of God’s Love in the life of saved humans. (Rom.5:5) By and through them we decipher and peek into the different tones of God’s Love. They present to us the way of life of how God had eternally existed in His Triune Being in the Father, Son, and Spirit, and now invites humanity into His Loving existence. John tells us about how this Loving relationship will exist for eternity, “God is Love. When we take up permanent residence in a life of Love, we live in God and God lives in us’ (1 John 4:16).

Fruits of The Spirit Tell Us The Different Tones of God’s Love – (1 Cor.13) (Wiki Commons)

As we approach the festival of Pentecost which commemorates the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon mankind as prophesied by the prophet Joel, let us be reminded that it is the Spirit’s Presence in humanity that brings about and enliven the very Christ-life in each of us, His ‘Immanuel humanity’ empowered by the Spirit’s Love. And with Christ living and walking in humans, mankind has become the very temple of God upon earth where our heavenly Father dwells and is worshipped day and might. (Joel 2:28-29; Act.2:17)

God’s Gift to Humanity – The New ‘Immanuel Humanity’ of Jesus Which Displaces the Fallen ‘Adamic Humanity’ of Adam Through Rebirth

I close this post with my best wishes to all my readers for a blessed Pentecost season 2021. May God’s Spirit be with you and grant you peace and abundance.

The Dove, Symbol of The Holy Spirit and Power of God’s Love in Humanity (Rom.5:5)

Petition: Friends, as I have closed my post in the past, I customarily give our readers the opportunity to give their lives to our Maker. I thank you for investing your precious time with me in the sharing of the good news of Jesus who has enabled us to live the Triune Life.* Jesus is alive today as our High Priest in heaven seated at His Father’s side, and ceaselessly mediating for us.

God is Love

I hope that in your heart of heart you will receive Him as your personal Savior, receive God’s Spirit, and be part of living this glorious humanity made children of God forever. (1 Sam.16:7; Jer.17:10) You can privately and quietly pray the prayer below in your heart. I am asking you to pray this prayer as a human being Christ died for, regardless of your background. All are inducted into the one mankind Jesus saved, not into any religion, religious sect or denomination, color, culture, or nationality – but into one glorious ‘Immanuel humanity’ that Christ is preparing as the holy temple for God’s dwelling:

Prayer: “Almighty God, Father of all humanity, forgive me of all my sins for I receive Your Son, Jesus, as my personal Savior. In Your incalculable grace, thank you for recuing me and my loved ones, and all humanity, from the enemy’s fearful and destructive waters, and bringing us home into the life-giving waters of your Ocean of Love. Grant Your promised celestial life in Your Son through Your Holy Spirit, and open my eyes to the wondrous gifts you have conferred upon us all so we may serve one another in your Love. May Your Love guide and protect me and my Loved ones always, and bring us all into Your beloved and divine Kingdom. I praise and thank You, Amen.”

Prayer is A Profound One-On-One Spiritual Love Dialogue Between a Person and God the Father in Heaven (Wiki Commons)

Welcome to the celestial life of Love in God’s holy, eternal Family. (1 Tim.6:19) Then keep in touch with God’s Word for you by reading and studying your Bible, and visiting this blog and website and look at various subjects that may be relevant for your situation – go to: http://bulamanriver.net. You can email me with your questions at – bulamanriver@gmail.com.

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The Cross, Symbol of Death and Rebirth In Christ – Gal.2:20; John 3:5. (Unsplash)

Blessing: Until we meet again in my next post, may the blessings of the God who ceaselessly expresses Himself in His dependable Triune Love, be with you and your loved ones this Pentecost season and always. May the Spirit enliven your spirit and make all things concerning you possible as you live the “Triune Life”*. In closing, pray for God’s intervention with regard to the pandemic that is sweeping this world. Finally, may you always find strength in the Lord’s Joy.

Farewell for now,

Kiang P Lee, Your Servant in Christ,

*Triune Life: “Triune Life” speaks of the process of theosis or deification of humanity. What is theosis or deification? “It refers to apotheosis, meaning “making divine.” Theosis or deification is a transformative process whose aim is likeness to or union with God (as taught by the Eastern Orthodox Church and Eastern Catholic Church).” (Wikipedia.org) The belief in the process of ‘deification’ is understood in accordance with Jesus’ teaching, when He said, “Is it not written in your Law, ‘I have said you are “gods” ’? If He called them ‘gods,’ to whom the Word of God came—and Scripture cannot be set aside (cannot be broken)” (John 10:34-35; Psa.82:6). (You can read about the Triune Life at: http://bulamanriver.net/9199, and other posts)

The Resurrection to Immortality and Deification of Humanity Created In God’s Image (Wiki Commons)

I have written about this subject of ‘deification’ in my blogs under the theme ‘substitution’ and ‘attribution’ (see, http://bulamanriver.net/564), where I showed how Jesus came as God incarnate (Immanuel) to assume our sinful humanity in order to save mankind from sin and death for the express purpose of human deification. (Matt.1:23; Rom.3:10-12, 18, 23; John 3:16; 1 Cor.15:50-55; Rom.8:29) Further, we read the following, “As a process of transformation, theosis is brought about by the effects of catharsis (purification of mind and body) and theoria (‘illumination’ with the ‘vision’ of God). According to Eastern Christian teaching, theosis is very much the purpose of human life. It is considered achievable only through a synergy (or cooperation) between human activity and God’s uncreated energies.” (Wikipedia.org)

So, the “Triune Life” reveals the intersection of human life and activity and the uncreated divine energy flowing from the Tri-Personal Being of God of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. It is a way of life which explains that process of theosis whereby humans are transformed in body, mind, and spirit by the Love of God. God’s uncreated energy is His Love. So, the foundational tenet of the “Triune Life” is based upon the Love of God, for “God is Love” (1 John 4:8, 16). Thereby, it can also be called aptly, the “Triune Love.”

Sculpture of Rublev’s Icon of the Trinity (Wiki Commons)

I had coined the term “Triune Love” and “Triune Life,” to refer to a person who lives the three-dimensional life within the Tri-Personal Godhead of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. (Matt.28:19) This is opposed to the one-dimensional human way of life influenced by the devil. We see God’s Tri-Personal Love move in an inward, outward, and upward trajectory, in this process of theosis which I have called the ‘three ascents.’ The three ascents are three steps which dovetails into one another showing how all three Persons of the Godhead are in the relationship of Love with humanity – where God reveals the fullness of Himself to humanity, both individually and collectively. (2 Cor.13:14; 1 Pet.1:1-2) That’s to say, the act of one is the act of all three, and the act of three is the act of one, making them unified with in Love. (Mar.12:29; Deut.6:4)

Every aspect of human living follows this three-step format revealing the three-dimensional aspect of how the Tri-Personal Being of God in the Father, Son, and Spirit, directly and collectively involved in the life of human believers, individually and collectively to bring humanity to salvation. These three steps move in an ascending order, so I will call them ‘ascents.’ Each ‘ascent’ dovetails into the next and finally reveals the ‘manifestation’ of the topic, which we will call the fourth step, in this case, Love!

Hence, all my articles are framed within this three-step format, or ascents. The subject of the article dovetails into each ascent and spontaneously lead to the manifestation of the divine Love and reveals how humanity is enlightened by God, and cleansed in mind, body, and spirit. The ascents reveal three doors one must enter to attain the manifestation of God’s Love relationship with humanity. The ascents are not to be misconstrued as some ‘secret knowledge’ or mystical activity. Rather, each ascent represents the relationship of Love a human enjoys with the Triune God in the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, throughout a person’s life.

In fact, the ascents are actually three Love relationships the believer encounters with the Tri-Personal God. This three-way relationship is what I have called by the term, “Triune Life” or “Triune Love.” These ascents represent the movement of God’s Love in an inward, outward, and upward, trajectory to bring God’s enlightenment in a person. The fourth step reveals how the article is made to manifest in the life of the person, both individually and then collectively in humanity.

Man’s union with the Triune God, or “Triune Living/Loving,” is made possible by Jesus, who Himself, is one in substance and reality with the Triune Godhead. (John 1:1-2) He took our humanity into the very Being of the Triune Godhead by cleansing it of all sin and rebellion. To live the “Triune Love (Life)” is the miraculous expression of the Spirit (Love) in humans. (Rom.5:5; Eph.3:16; Col2:2) The miraculous life is the promise of the New Covenant, “I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you shall keep My ordinances, and do them” (Ezek.36:27).

The Bible states, “He (God) does great things that we cannot understand and miracles that we cannot count” (Job 5:9; 37:5). If God acts in ways that cannot be fathomed and is beyond human comprehension, then the miraculous life where humans are privileged recipients, cannot be deciphered by the human mind to its grandest manifestation. But we understand its meaning through divine revelation in that God reveals Himself as Love, and His miraculous activities are enveloped in His Love. (Jer.29:11)

The three-dimensional Triune Life/Love is opposed to living the one-dimensional solitary life of the fallen humanity inherited from Satan through Adam’s rebellion. For additional information about the Triune Life: http://bulamanriver.net/?p=8036. Also at: http://bulamanriver.net/9092.                                              

**Bulamanriver: To read the different facets of the life of the Bulamanriver, you may obtain a copy of my book, “Bula” Man-River, from Amazon.com; xulonpress.com, barnesandnoble.com, and other online book stores. All proceeds will go towards furthering the work of Gospel of Jesus Christ around the world.

Bulamanriver: Book Cover by Author

*Mission Statement: Read the Triune Love Mission, Vision, and Value statements at: http://bulamanriver.net/8664

All scriptures are taken from the NIV Version 2011, unless stated otherwise.

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EASTER 2021: DAY OF ATONEMENT, BY KIANG P LEE

Greetings Friends! In this post I would like us to explore the role of Jesus’ messiahship through the lens of the atonement story that was told in Israel in the Old Testament each year. Yes, it was the special religious observance called the Day of Atonement. The Day of Atonement is known in Judaism as “Yom Kippur.” It is a ritual performed yearly in the Old Testament setting in ancient Israel. (Lev.16) This is relevant as we enter and keep the season of Passover and Easter, 2021. The message of Atonement was prophetic in its scope and corresponds with the New Testament message of the cross and Jesus’ work of Messiah and Savior of humanity. (Hebrews chapters 9 and 10)

Yom Kippur Wall Art - Painting - Atonement by M Spadecaller
Trumpet Blown on Day of Atonement to Signify Freedom (Lev.25:9)

The story behind the Day of Atonement foretells the role of Jesus and His work of dealing with human sin and rebellion, but fundamentally to contend with and confront Satan, God’s and humanity’s adversary, who is the chief architect and instigator of sin and rebellion in humanity. Yom Kippur was a religious high day in ancient Israel because of its meaning and relevance to the people and to the God they worshipped. It is a day full of ritual and symbolism with profound significance.

Israel’s temple high priest played the chief role on this day. The high priest was enacting the role of mankind’s true High Priest who would later come in the Person of Jesus Christ. Paul tell us this, “Therefore, since we have a great High Priest who has ascended into heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we do not have a High Priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet He did not sin. Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need” (Heb.4:14-16).

The temple high priest was required to perform vital rituals associated with God’s relationship with the nation of Israel, and ultimately the whole world. (John 3:16) It is the only day the high priest is permitted to enter the most holy location in the temple, called the ‘holy of holies,’ where God is present when atonement is made for the people. (Heb.9:7). The people of Israel, for their part, were required to fast and confessed their sins before God as part of their act of worship. “Atonement is to be made once a year for all the sins of the Israelites” (Lev.16:34). God would appear before Israel in the holy place of the temple to cleanse the people of all their sins.

High Priest Before The Ark And Mercy Seat in the Most Holy Place in The Temple

On this most solemn of days in the Israelite religious calendar, the high priest performs a ceremony unique for this day where two goats are presented, and “he is to cast lots for the two goats – one lot for the Lord and the other lot for the scapegoat (Azazel)” (Lev.16:8). A very interesting, one might say strange ceremony, but why the two goats, and what do they mean?

The Two Goats of Day of Atonement and What They Represent (Wiki Commons)

The goat allotted “for the Lord” represents Jesus Christ. This goat was sacrificed and its blood sprinkled in the mercy seat in the ‘holy of holies’ before God. This act represents atonement made for the sins of the people which symbolically cleanse and unify them with God. (Lev.16:15-16) The Bible states emphatically, “The law requires that nearly everything be cleansed with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness” (Heb.9:22; Lev.17:11). Yes, everything was purified with blood. For without the shedding of blood, forgiveness can’t be achieved. This sacrificial goat depicts Jesus and the atoning sacrifice upon His cross for humanity’s sin and rebellion against God.

One of the Goats Represent the Messiah Jesus Christ’s Atonement for Humanity’s Sins

The other goat is called the Azazel or scapegoat. (Lev.16:8) The High Priest performed a separate and unique routine upon the Azazel goat. The high priest shall “lay both hands on the head of the live goat and confess over it all the wickedness and rebellion of the Israelites–all their sins–and put them on the goat’s head” (Lev.16:21-22). This scapegoat represents the devil who is the instigator of all rebellion and sin in humanity against God. This had been Satan’s chief activity who was ultimately responsible for Adam’s fall in Eden. He continues to tempt and seduce humans from all walks of life to sin against God and His holy Love. This goat is allowed to be released ‘alive’ into the desert wilderness, for obvious reason as we’ll see a little later.

This live goat represented Satan the devil, and through this unique ceremonial act the high priest transfers all the sins and guilt of the people upon the head of the live goat (Satan’s head), for he is the great tempter, and first cause for all sin and rebellion committed by the people against God.  

The Live Goat (Azazel) Released Into The Desert Wilderness (Wiki Commons)

Let us now see the New Testament parallel of this vital message of reconciliation and forgiveness through Jesus’ cross from the Day of Atonement, and specifically as it relates to Jesus Christ, humanity’s Savior, High Priest, and heavenly eternal Mediator. We are told clearly from Scripture, “Therefore, since we have a great High Priest who has ascended into heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess” (Heb.4:14). So, Aaron as high priest in Israel, was performing the role picturing the true High Priest, Jesus, who later came and fulfill this office and function in God’s grand plan of saving mankind, and continues to do so to this today. So, Jesus is both Savior and High Priest; the sacrificial Lamb of God and Redeemer.

And besides Jesus’ High Priestly function, the New Testament reveals how at this identical time, Jesus as humanity’s Savior defeated Satan in the titanic spiritual battle of the temptations unleashed by Satan upon Jesus as recorded in the Bible – Matthew.4:1-11. This was God’s overall plan for His Son to eradicate sin in humanity, by defeating the instigator of all sin, Satan, in the titanic battle of the temptations, and ultimately upon His cross upon Calvary.

Notice, one of the obligatory exercises expected of the people for observing the Day of Atonement was the people fasted and confessed their sins before God. (Lev.23:27; Lev.16:29-33) In the New Testament, Jesus fulfilled both obligations when He was baptized by John for the baptism of forgiveness of sins, and thereafter fasted for forty days in the Judean wilderness. Mark tells us, “And so John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins” (Mar.1:4). Yes, John’s message was identical with the message of Atonement the people of Israel heard and confessed their sins before God on the Day of Atonement.

However, Jesus had no sin to repent of, much less the need for forgiveness. Being the Son of God, the Immanuel and Messiah, He was sinless. (Isa.7:14; Matt.1:23; Luk.2:11) Jesus is the second Person of the Trinitarian Godhead. (John 10:30; 17:21; Matt.28:28-30; 2 Cor.13:14; Act.7:55; 1 Pet.1:2) John affirms this truth, saying, “The Word (Jesus) became flesh and made His dwelling among us. We have seen His glory, the glory of the One and only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth” (John 1:14)

Paul affirms this astounding truth, saying, “But when the set time had fully come, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law, that we might receive adoption to sonship. Because you are His sons, God sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba, Father” (Gal.4:4-6). He was both divine and human – “Immanuel,” meaning “God with us” – in the Person of Jesus Christ. (Matt.1:23)

Jesus, Born Immanuel Human to Become Mankind’s Savior and Mediator (Wiki Commons)

The Bible further affirms Jesus divesting His divinity to take up our fallen humanity in Himself in order to save us from sin and death. Immerse yourself in the words of Paul, “Because God’s children are human beings—made of flesh and blood—the Son also became flesh and blood (Immanuel). For only as a human being could He die, and only by dying could He break the power of the devil, who had the power of death. Only in this way could He set free all who have lived their lives as slaves to fear of dying” (Heb.2:14-15, NLB; Matt.1:23; John 3:16, italics mine). Paul reminds us what sin and rebellion brings, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom.6:23).

Paul supports Jesus’ deity, saying, “In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature a God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to His own advantage; rather, He made Himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross!” (Phi.2:5-8) God knew what it was like to be a tormented human held in bondage of sin by giving His Son to identify with us and save humanity. John corroborated this most beautiful truth about Jesus’ perfect Being, saying, “And you know that Jesus came to take away our sins, and there is no sin in Him” (1 John 3:5).

Jesus Baptized by John for Humanity’s Forgiveness

So, we ask, what was the purpose of Jesus’ baptism considering He had no sin to confess nor repent of, much less be forgiven? The true purpose of Jesus’ baptism was He was baptized for all humanity. He was repenting for mankind’s forgiveness, absolution, and salvation. Humans repent, obtain forgiveness, and are baptized because Jesus has gone on before and done it for mankind. Hence, God the Father imputes Christ’s perfect work, His sacrificial death upon the cross, and His resurrected now glorified human life, upon us. (1 Cor.1:30; 2 Cor.5:21; Act.2:38)

In other words, humans cannot repent on their own volition, repentance is a gift of God through His Son. (Act.11:18; Gal.3:13) When John saw Jesus approaching to be baptized, recollect their dialog. John said, “I am the one who needs to be baptized by You,” he said, “so why are You coming to me?” He recognized who Jesus was. Then Jesus replied, “Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness” (Matt.3:13-15). To “fulfill all righteousness” means they were obligated to carry out all that God required of them. And God’s plan was that Jesus was to be baptized by John for humanity’s repentance and forgiveness. (2 Cor.5:21; 1 Cor.1:30)

We repent and are forgiven upon the template of Jesus’ baptism, His saving work through His perfect life in our place. Just as Jesus was crucified for our sins, He was similarly baptized for our forgiveness. Paul said this, “In the Messiah, in Christ, God leads us from place to place in one perpetual victory parade” (2 Cor.2:14, MSG). Yes, in life we are marching with Him in His triumphant procession. Thank God, like a true Loving Father, He has ascribed and imputed His Son’s finished work upon us for our ultimate salvation. (Phi.3:9; Rom.4:55:19)

In truth, the new human life Jesus brought, the ‘Immanuel humanity,’ was to displace and substitute the fallen ‘Adamic humanity’ we inherited from Adam’s fall – so His whole life was a substitute for our fallen ‘Adamic humanity.’ He told us that we must be reborn and take upon us His new humanity energized by and enabled in the Spirit’s appeal and Love. (John 3:3-7; Rom.5:5) Paul affirmed this marvelous truth, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” (2 Cor.5:17). Jesus said, “Unless you repent (change), you will all perish likewise” (Luk.13:3, 5). Essentially, the call to repentance is of and in itself the call to change and take up the new ‘Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus in place of the sin-conditioned ‘Adamic humanity’ from Adam’s fall. (2 Cor.5:17; Ezek.36:26; John 3:3; Rom.6:4) (You can read about the New Humanity Jesus brought from the Father to Substitute our fallen ‘Adamic Humanity’ at: http://bulamanriver.net/19496)

We Are Baptized Into and Following Jesus’ Own Baptism of Forgiveness And Rebirth (Rom.6:3-4)

God gave Jesus this mission to bring us His new ‘Immanuel humanity’ empowered in the Spirit by coming as the Messiah who repented for us, lived a perfect human life, and died a sinless sacrifice upon His cross to save mankind from all sin, past, present, and future. (Rom.:12:1-2; Rom.15:16;) John said this, “My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have an advocate with the Father—Jesus Christ, the Righteous One. He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world” (1 John 2:1-2; also 2 Cor.5:21).

In God’s boundless mercy He has made provision for our destiny and salvation through His Son as our ongoing Savior and eternal Mediator High Priest in heaven today. He will not abandon us but will finish what He has begun in His Son. (John 3:16) Paul said this about God’s guarantee to bring us and all humanity into His divine realm and kingdom, “And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in Him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of His glory” (Eph.1:13-14).

The Gentle Dove, Symbol of the Holy Spirit (Wiki Commons)

God’s limitless compassion for humanity is beyond comprehension, “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” (Lam.3:22-23). Paul says here, “You were marked in Him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession.” And here we see the second reason the Father sent His Son, to inaugurate the gift of the Holy Spirit to indwell mankind and make real and tangible Christ’s new ‘Immanuel humanity.’

Recall, after Jesus was baptized by John, the Bible records, “Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. Just as Jesus was coming up out of the water, He saw heaven being torn open and the Spirit descending on him like a dove. And a voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased” (Mar.1:9-11). Yes, Jesus inaugurated the gift of the Holy Spirit, and later the Spirit was poured out upon the faithful and all humanity on the day of Pentecost. (Act.2:1-4)

“Rivers of Living Water” – Symbol of The Holy Spirit’s Cleansing Activity In Humanity (John 3:5; 7:38-39)

So, we see how Jesus replicated the traditional obligation to solicit divine forgiveness of human sins through repentance as was expected of the people on the Day of Atonement. (Lev.16:29-33) He then gave passage for the Holy Spirit to enter human life from the Father for the purpose of sanctifying humans in God’s Love (Rom.5:5; John 16:7; 14:26)

In the ancient Israelite ritual, baptism was symbolized by the high priest washing in the laver, a washbowl filled with water. The Bible states, “And Moses brought Aaron and his sons, and washed them with water (Lev.8:6). Jesus said, “Truly, truly, I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit” (John 3:5, also Eph.5:26-27).

The next ritual was that of fasting. Let’s note the parallel in Jesus’ own life. After His baptism, “Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. After fasting forty days and forty nights, He was hungry. The tempter came to Him” (Matt.4:1-3). Yes, Jesus fasted as did the people in ancient Israel.

Recall, where was the live Azazel goat released? It was let go alive into the desert wilderness, and Jesus fasted for forty days in the identical wilderness. (Lev.16:20-22) And here is where Jesus confronted Satan in the titanic spiritual battle in the temptations for the soul of humanity. His spiritual preparation was He fasted for 40 days.

He was tempted by Satan during His 40 days of fasting. What was the purpose of Jesus’ fast and His simultaneous encounter with Satan’s temptation? Jesus faced up to four paramount aspects of the devil’s temptations revealed in the Gospel of Matthew. (Matt.4:1-11) These 4 temptations forms the very foundation of Satan’s primal force of sin and rebellion which he unleashes upon all humanity.

By defeating Satan, Jesus not only gave humanity victory over this invisible enemy who is the instigator of all sin, He has also laid bare the very core of Satan’s evil plan to keep humanity in the chains of sin. That’s to say, Jesus gave humanity the divine inside track (so to speak) to Satan’s blueprint by which he tempts all humans to sin, do evil, and rebel against God, and keep humanity in the bondage of sin and rebellion. It has been said that the key ingredient for defeating an enemy is, “know thine enemy.” Through the temptations, God has opened this eternal wisdom for humans through His Son. Not only was Jesus baptized for our forgiveness, He also defeated the devil in our place, then was crucified for our atonement. 

Jesus was famished From His Fast. In the First Temptation Jesus was Tempted to Concede His Divine Powers to the Enemy by Changing Rocks into Bread (Wiki Commons)

So, Jesus led a glorious victory for humanity by defeating Satan by way of these temptations, and thereby defeat all of humanity’s sins which arise from them. If you were able to imagine all the sin and rebellion of humanity since Adam’s fall, they essentially can be categorized into and arise from these four temptation sub-headings. From their various pigments and color, indentations and grooves, and patterns and profiles, Satan blinds people and keep humanity in the chains of sin and rebellion. Be truly thankful for God’s divine wisdom, for Scripture tell us, “For since He Himself was tempted in that which He suffered, He is able to come to the aid of those who are tempted (by the devil)” (Heb.2:18). God our Father comforts us with His Fatherly words, “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you” (Psa.32:8).

(You can read about the four temptations in my blog post, titled, a) – “The Four Temptations And God’s Promises,” at: http://bulamanriver.net/11339. Also, b) – “The Saving Faith of Jesus,” at: http://bulamanriver.net/21946; and c) – “The 4 Temptations, How To Overcome and Live Victoriously In Christ,” at http://bulamanriver.net/20216)

So, what is the essential meaning of Jesus act of defeating the devil’s deceitful cunning temptations with overwhelming victory and accomplishment in the Judean wilderness? You will recall the high priest’s extraordinary act upon the second live scapegoat (Azazel): “He is to lay both hands on the head of the live goat and confess over it all the wickedness and rebellion of the Israelites—all their sins—and put them on the goat’s head. He shall send the goat away into the wilderness in the care of someone appointed for the task. The goat will carry on itself all their sins to a remote place; and the man shall release it in the wilderness” (Lev.16:20-22). Note the parallel with Jesus’ victory over Satan. The reason the live goat (Azazel) was released live in the wilderness is because it represents the devil who was created of spirit, not physical matter. Satan is a fallen angel who cannot die, hence the second goat was released ‘alive’ in the desert wilderness.


The High Priest “Lay Both Hands on the Head of the Live Goat and Confess Over It all the Wickedness and Rebellion of the Israelites—all their sins—and put them on the goat’s head. He Shall Send the Goat Away into the Wilderness.”

When the high priest in Israel laid his hands on the live goat (Azazel), he was portraying what the true High Priest, Jesus, would later do for all humanity when He effectively laid His hands squarely upon Satan’s head (the live goat) and transferred all the sins and rebellion of Israel, and by extension all humanity, when He defeated Satan in the temptations. (John 3:16, 36) Jesus had done what God His Father had planned in His appointed time and place. Today, Jesus Christ is mankind’s High Priest in heaven who continues to unceasingly mediate for humanity. (Heb.4:14-16; 1 Cor.1:30)

So, in Jesus’ temptation in the Judean wilderness, He was reconstructing the Israelite high priest’s ritual from the Day of Atonement of placing all the charge of humanity’s sin where they rightfully belong, Satan’s head. Jesus defeated Satan at his own temptations by which he has held humanity captive to the prison of sin and rebellion. It turned out to be the ultimate battle for the soul of humanity which culminated at His cross upon Calvary to restore humanity back to God. Seconds before Jesus breathed His last upon His cross, He uttered the words, “It is finished!” (John 19:30).

Jesus, Humanity’s High Priest Today Before The Heavenly Mercy Seat.

Yes, Jesus had ‘finished’ a vital aspect of His earthly mission given Him by the Father, by defeating the devil once for all through the temptations and later by His death upon His cross. Jesus’ mission continues to this day upon those He calls. (Matt.28:18-20; Act.14:21-28; 26:12-18) Jesus has brought humanity back from the brink of eternal disaster which began at the hands of Adam’s rebellion and sin in Eden, and back to the eternal God and Creator and made mankind His eternal children forever. (Gen.3:1-6, 23-24; John 3:16)

The message of the Gospel of reconciliation continues today, as Paul declares, “All this is from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to Himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And He has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making His appeal through us” (2 Cor.5:18-19).

John, in a vision he was given of the end of time when Jesus has restituted all things to His Father, recorded this, “And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and He will dwell with them. They will be His people, and God Himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away. He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” (Rev.21:3-5).

Living the Human Victorious Life in Christ

If eternal justice must be served, it would not be divine justice for Jesus to carry the weight of humanity’s sin upon Himself on His cross for which He is not ultimately responsible, where the primary guilty party is allowed to go scot free without charge. Christ’s sacrifice was to pay for and atone human sin and rebellion – yes, humanity is culpable because the choice was theirs, albeit by the deception and cunning of the devil. Since humanity is responsible and thereby answerable for their actions, individually and collectively, they must repent, ask for forgiveness and receive Jesus’ as personal Savior through His baptism. The Bible is unambiguous, For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard. “For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard” (Rom.3:23; also, Act.2:37-39; 3:19; 20:21; Mar.1:15; Eccl.7:20). Jesus came to redeem us from all our personal guilt and sins.

However, the absolute and incontrovertible responsible party who instigated, caused, and is indisputably guilty of all human sin and rebellion, Satan the devil, must be held accountable and answer to the charges of sin and rebellion against God and His human children, and be convicted of all guilt for mankind’s sin and rebellion.

For Satan, to live eternally with all his and humanity’s sins he was responsible for, misdeeds and failures, his defeats, disasters, and blunders, beginning with his revolt from the start, are of themselves considered as ‘hell’ to live through on its own self-sabotaging merits. Conceivably, a hell suited for a fallen archangel and other revolting angels with the incorrigibles who have turned against their Creator God. (Isa.14:13-14; Rev.12:9, 3-4; Matt.25:41) What is the closest place which analogizes the desert wilderness where the live scapegoat was released? The Bible calls it the “lake of fire and brimstone” (Rev.20:1-2, 10). One can say, this is the categorical ‘graveyard’ of all sin and rebellion,

After Jesus had defeated Satan, angels appeared and ministered and comforted Him. (Matt.11:4). Then the Scripture tell us what Jesus did immediately after His momentous victory over Satan, “From that time on Jesus began to preach, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near” (Matt.4:17). Yes, the Scripture tell us something so powerful and astoundingly marvelous beyond comprehension here, which we can easily gloss over and miss altogether.

That is: since Adam’s fall in Eden at the hands of the devil, the “Kingdom of Heaven” have been closed to humanity. But not anymore…that is what Jesus announced after He defeated Satan in His titanic battle in the temptation…Jesus has now opened the doors of the Kingdom for mankind to enter. Hence, and not until Jesus defeated Satan the enemy, could this passage be stated by Jesus in its timely and foreordained manner, “the Kingdom of Heaven has come” (Matt.4:17). The ‘first Adam’ had closed the door to the Kingdom that was available to him and his children trough rebellion and sin. Now, the ‘second Adam (Jesus) has reopened the doors of the Kingdom. (1 Cor.15:22, 45)

Cross, Christ, Faith, God, Jesus, Clouds
Jesus, Son of God, Savior, High Priest

Up to the point when Jesus defeated Satan in the temptations, humanity entered and experienced life in the kingdom of darkness of the devil through Adam’s fall. Paul affirmed this, saying, “For He (God the Father) has rescued us from the kingdom of darkness and transferred us into the Kingdom of His dear Son, who purchased our freedom and forgave our sins” (Col.1:13-14, italics my emphasis).

Since Jesus opened the doors of the Kingdom He affirmed this announcement, saying, “Until John the Baptist, the law of Moses and the messages of the prophets were your guides. But now the Good News of the Kingdom of God is preached, and everyone is eager to get in” (Luk.16:16, also Matt.11:12). Yes, “the kingdom of heaven has come” (Matt.4:17). What a glorious announcement by Jesus to humanity. We ought to leap for joy in our hearts because of Jesus’ finished work of defeating the architect and father of sin, living the perfect human life, and ultimately sacrificing Himself for our atonement. (John 19:28; 30; John 8:44; 1 John 3:1)

Through Noah, the Patriarchs, Moses, Israel, and the Prophets, until the Messiah’s coming, God slowly but surely restored the Kingdom that was first available to Adam but sadly lost through his fall, and finally reinstated by Jesus through His birth, His colossal battle with Satan, His sinless life, His atoning death upon His cross, His resurrection and ascension to heaven. With that, Jesus changed humanity’s destiny forever when He finally opened the doors of the Kingdom where humanity may fulfill their rightful birthright as God’s offspring. (Gen.1:26-27) Be utterly thankful!

So, Jesus’ finished work of bringing humanity back to God the Father had started until mankind arrive at its destiny as stated in the Gospel, so we may enter and live with God our heavenly Father for all eternity. (Matt.25:34, NLT; John 3:16)

A final word about the temple of God. Bear in mind, all we have read about Atonement as it relates to the work of the Messiah and its related activities were focused primarily within the confines and context of the temple. Without the temple, the work of the high priest in Israel and the act of reconciling the people with God could not have been carried out. The most holy place where God is seated, where mercy flows and acquittal is obtained located within the temple’s holy of holies. God is the Tri-Personal Spirit Being who is composed of ‘spirit,’ and as such dwells in a spiritual temple. He is not a physical human being to dwell in a physical temple. The physical tabernacle/temple was a copy of the true spiritual temple of God in heaven, and now He seeks a dwelling to live and walk in upon earth. (2 Cor.6:16; Rev.21:3)

What and where is God’s temple on earth today? God’s spiritual temple is the very heart of His own spiritual people. (Act.7:47-50; 17:24-25) Yes, there is a spiritual component to man’s makeup. And yes, humans are mortal beings but he is given a heart and mind resembling God’s spiritual likeness. (Gen.1:26-27) Many today think that God dwells in impressive physical temples. No, God is not a human being to dwell in such physical edifices. Humans were created with the internal orientation of heart to receive God’s Holy Spirit and be made offspring of the divine, and God’s spiritual, living, temple.

“Don’t You Realize that All of You Together are The Temple of God and that the Spirit of God Lives in You?” (1 Cor.3:16).

He made this distinction between the physical and spiritual temples when He asks, “Heaven is My throne, and the earth is My footstool. Could you build Me a temple as good as that? Could you build Me such a resting place? My hands have made both heaven and earth; they and everything in them are Mine. I, the Lord, have spoken! I will bless those who have humble and contrite hearts, who tremble at My word” (Isa.66:1-2, NLT). What an awesome declaration of truth about His physical and spiritual temples. Let’s break this passage down.

God is proclaiming He already has a physical temple – the whole of creation and the universe is His physical temple. Elsewhere God asks, “Do not I fill heaven and earth?” declares the LORD” (Jer.23:24). The Scriptures says how God is adorned in His physical temple, “You are dressed in a robe of light.” It tells us what His temple looks like, “You stretch out the starry curtain of the heavens; You lay the rafters of Your home in the rain clouds; You ride upon the wings of the wind. The winds are your messengers; flames of fire are your servants” (Psa.104).

We only have to look at the marvelous beauty of this earth and the awesome expanse of the heavens to witness His magnificent physical temple. Of course, it would be laughable to even imagine that humanity can build a physical temple that’s vaguely comparable to His wondrously sweeping panoramic creation.

When God commanded Moses to erect a temple so He could live among His people, He was portraying and characterizing His spiritual temple. What is that spiritual temple? Paul answers clearly, “Don’t you realize that all of you together are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God lives in you?” (1 Cor.3:16). Speaking to individual humans, God tell us through Paul, “Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price. So, you must honor God with your body” (1 Cor.6:19). Yes, individually and collectively, we comprise God’s spiritual temple on earth. So, His vast material creation is God’s physical temple, and the collective Loving heart of humanity is His spiritual temple.

Paul taught the Ephesians, “Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. And in Him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by His Spirit” (Eph.2:19-22). Again, we are all individual bricks that the Master Builder, Jesus, is building to erect the very spiritual temple of God.

Peter asserted this wondrous truth concerning our common human destiny with God our Father and Creator, “And you are living stones that God is building into His spiritual temple. What’s more, you are His holy priests. Through the mediation of Jesus Christ, you offer spiritual sacrifices that please God” (1 Pet.2:5; also, Rom.12:1-2). Jesus told His hearers, “Behold, the kingdom of God is within you” (Luk.17:21). Jesus was pointing to Himself living within each and every saved human being, “Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Col.1:27; also, Gal.2:20)

The prophet Isaiah gives us this revealing passage about the human heart as the spiritual aspect of the human body wherein God dwells, “For this is what the high and exalted One says– He who lives forever, whose name is holy: “I live in a high and holy place, but also with the one who is contrite and lowly in spirit, to revive the spirit of the lowly and to revive the heart of the contrite” (Isa.57:15). Yes, God lives in the heart of His human children who are contrite and humble in spirit and mind. John said this about this beautiful coexistence of God with His human children, “God is Love, and all who live in Love live in God, and God lives in them” (1 John 4:16).

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A Rendition of Solomon’s Temple Where God Is Present in The Holy Place (Wiki Commons)

The Psalmist’s prayer of contrition laments, “You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it; you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings. My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart You, God, will not despise” (Psa.51:16-17; Psa.34:18; Isa.66:1-2; Matt.22:37-40). His children have a “broken and contrite heart,” that’s to say, we Love Him with all our hearts and relate with Him in a humbling and respectful disposition and attitude of mind and spirit. We live to let His all-encompassing Love find a permanent home in the inner sanctum of our hearts. (1 Cor.13)

The act of Atonement happening in the heavenly temple in God’s presence, is replicated in the heart of humanity in those who have surrendered their lives to Christ, God’s High Priest. (Isa.57:15) The “holy of holies” in the physical temple portrays the “human heart/mind,” God’s spiritual temple on earth, where God’s presence is located in the inner sanctum of the surrendered heart of humanity. Here, humanity is cleansed through Jesus’ mediation and the Father communes in Loving relationship with us. It is truly an awesome divine picture of the future Loving union between God and His human children.

The Spiritual Aspect of Human Life in His Spiritual Consciousness In The Inner Sanctum Of The Human Heart and Mind (Wiki Commons)

God’s ‘mercy seat’ in heaven is identical with the ‘mercy seat’ on earth in the inner sanctum of the heart and mind of saved humanity. It is here the Father is seated enthroned and exalted. It is here before the Father, that Jesus our High Priest appears and appeals for us with His shed blood in His glorified human life for our eternal absolution and reconciliation. (Gal.2:20; Rom.8:3; Heb.4:14-16)

This is the sacred abode of God, the atmospheric within the temple is heavily laden and saturated with delightful fragranced incense, symbolizing human prayers, our Love and worship, gratitude and praise, being perfected in Jesus who transforms them into a sweet-smelling aroma before God. (2 Cor.2:15; Eph.5:2) It is here that humanity meets with the Triune God all the days of sojourn upon earth, until our change comes at the resurrection in the Spirit’s power at Christ’s return to earth. (1 Cor.15:51-58; also, 1 Thes.4:16-18; Rom.8:11)

What we are seeing is the fusing of two hearts in Love – the heart of God and the ‘contrite heart’ of humanity. John tells us this, “We know how much God Loves us, and we have put our trust in His Love. God is Love, and all who live in Love live in God, and God lives in them. And as we live in God, our Love grows more perfect” (1 John 4:16-17). We see the most beautiful picture of God living united with His human children in His divine nature of Love. (To read and understand the various functions of the temple and what they portray in our lives as humans and God’s children, you may read my post at: http://bulamanriver.net/11230.)

The “Holy of Holies” in the Physical Temple, Depiction of the Spiritual Temple and Holy Place of the Inner Sanctum of the Human Heart of God’s People

I close this post with my best wishes to all my readers for a solemn and blessed Passover/Easter 2021. May God’s grace be with you abundantly.

Petition: Friends, as I have closed my post in the past, I customarily give our readers the opportunity to give their lives to our Maker. I thank you for investing your precious time with me in the sharing of the good news of Jesus who has enabled us to live the Triune Life.* Jesus is alive today as our High Priest in heaven seated at His Father’s side, and ceaselessly mediating for us.

I hope that in your heart of heart you will receive Him as your personal Savior, receive God’s Spirit, and be part of living this glorious humanity made children of God forever. (1 Sam.16:7; Jer.17:10) You can privately and quietly pray the prayer below in your heart. I am asking you to pray this prayer as a human being Christ died for, regardless of your background. All are inducted into the one mankind Jesus saved, not into any religion, religious sect or denomination, color, culture, or nationality – but into the one glorious humanity that Christ is preparing as the holy temple for God’s dwelling:

Prayer: “Almighty God, Father of all humanity, forgive me of all my sins for I receive Your Son, Jesus, as my personal Savior. In Your incalculable grace, thank you for recuing me and my loved ones, and all humanity, from the enemy’s fearful and destructive waters, and bringing us home into the life-giving waters of your Ocean of Love. Grant Your promised celestial life in Your Son through Your Holy Spirit, and open my eyes to the wondrous gifts you have conferred upon us all so we may serve one another in your Love. May Your Love guide and protect me and my Loved ones always, and bring us all into Your beloved and divine Kingdom. I praise and thank You, Amen.”

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Prayer is A Profound One-On-One Spiritual Love Dialogue Between a Person and God the Father in Heaven (Wiki Commons)

Welcome to the celestial life of Love in God’s holy, eternal Family. (1 Tim.6:19) Then keep in touch with God’s Word for you by reading and studying your Bible, and visiting this blog and website and look at various subjects that may be relevant for your situation – go to: http://bulamanriver.net. You can email me with your questions at – bulamanriver@gmail.com.

Blessing: Until we meet again in my next post, may the blessings of the God who ceaselessly expresses Himself in His dependable Triune Love, be with you and your loved ones this Easter season and always. May the Spirit enliven your spirit and make all things concerning you possible as you live the “Triune Life”*. In closing, pray for God’s intervention with regard to the pandemic that is sweeping this world. Finally, may you always find strength in the Lord’s Joy.

Farewell for now,

Kiang,  (Your Servant and Friend in Christ)   

Special Note to our Readers: Kindly support our work, buy one or more Easter Mugs. You may go to our store, “BulaMugsGifts,” at: https://www.etsy.com/ca/shop/BulaMugsGifts_ Thank you all for your inestimable support.                                           

*Triune Life: “Triune Life” speaks of the process of theosis or deification of humanity. What is theosis or deification? “It refers to apotheosis, meaning “making divine.” Theosis or deification is a transformative process whose aim is likeness to or union with God (as taught by the Eastern Orthodox Church and Eastern Catholic Church).” (Wikipedia.org) The belief in the process of ‘deification’ is understood in accordance with Jesus’ teaching, when He said, “Is it not written in your Law, ‘I have said you are “gods” ’? If He called them ‘gods,’ to whom the Word of God came—and Scripture cannot be set aside (cannot be broken)” (John 10:34-35; Psa.82:6). (You can read about the Triune Life at: http://bulamanriver.net/9199, and other posts)

The Resurrection to Immortality and Deification of Humanity Created In God’s Image (Wiki Commons)

I have written about this subject of ‘deification’ in my blogs under the theme ‘substitution’ and ‘attribution’ (see, http://bulamanriver.net/564), where I showed how Jesus came as God incarnate (Immanuel) to assume our sinful humanity in order to save mankind from sin and death for the express purpose of human deification. (Matt.1:23Rom.3:10-121823John 3:161 Cor.15:50-55Rom.8:29) Further, we read the following, “As a process of transformation, theosis is brought about by the effects of catharsis (purification of mind and body) and theoria (‘illumination’ with the ‘vision’ of God). According to Eastern Christian teaching, theosis is very much the purpose of human life. It is considered achievable only through a synergy (or cooperation) between human activity and God’s uncreated energies.” (Wikipedia.org)

So, the “Triune Life” reveals the intersection of human life and activity and the uncreated divine energy flowing from the Tri-Personal Being of God of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. It is a way of life which explains that process of theosis whereby humans are transformed in body, mind, and spirit by the Love of God. God’s uncreated energy is His Love. So, the foundational tenet of the “Triune Life” is based upon the Love of God, for “God is Love” (1 John 4:816). Thereby, it can also be called aptly, the “Triune Love.”

Sculpture of Rublev’s Icon of the Trinity (Wiki Commons)

I had coined the term “Triune Love” and “Triune Life,” to refer to a person who lives the three-dimensional life within the Tri-Personal Godhead of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. (Matt.28:19) This is opposed to the one-dimensional human way of life influenced by the devil. We see God’s Tri-Personal Love move in an inward, outward, and upward trajectory, in this process of theosis which I have called the ‘three ascents.’ The three ascents are three steps which dovetails into one another showing how all three Persons of the Godhead are in the relationship of Love with humanity – where God reveals the fullness of Himself to humanity, both individually and collectively. (2 Cor.13:141 Pet.1:1-2) That’s to say, the act of one is the act of all three, and the act of three is the act of one, making them unified with in Love. (Mar.12:29Deut.6:4)

Every aspect of human living follows this three-step format revealing the three-dimensional aspect of how the Tri-Personal Being of God in the Father, Son, and Spirit, directly and collectively involved in the life of human believers, individually and collectively to bring humanity to salvation. These three steps move in an ascending order, so I will call them ‘ascents.’ Each ‘ascent’ dovetails into the next and finally reveals the ‘manifestation’ of the topic, which we will call the fourth step, in this case, Love!

Hence, all my articles are framed within this three-step format, or ascents. The subject of the article dovetails into each ascent and spontaneously lead to the manifestation of the divine Love and reveals how humanity is enlightened by God, and cleansed in mind, body, and spirit. The ascents reveal three doors one must enter to attain the manifestation of God’s Love relationship with humanity. The ascents are not to be misconstrued as some ‘secret knowledge’ or mystical activity. Rather, each ascent represents the relationship of Love a human enjoys with the Triune God in the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, throughout a person’s life.

In fact, the ascents are actually three Love relationships the believer encounters with the Tri-Personal God. This three-way relationship is what I have called by the term, “Triune Life” or “Triune Love.” These ascents represent the movement of God’s Love in an inward, outward, and upward, trajectory to bring God’s enlightenment in a person. The fourth step reveals how the article is made to manifest in the life of the person, both individually and then collectively in humanity.

Man’s union with the Triune God, or “Triune Living/Loving,” is made possible by Jesus, who Himself, is one in substance and reality with the Triune Godhead. (John 1:1-2) He took our humanity into the very Being of the Triune Godhead by cleansing it of all sin and rebellion. To live the “Triune Love (Life)” is the miraculous expression of the Spirit (Love) in humans. (Rom.5:5; Eph.3:16; Col2:2) The miraculous life is the promise of the New Covenant, “I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you shall keep My ordinances, and do them” (Ezek.36:27).

The Bible states, “He (God) does great things that we cannot understand and miracles that we cannot count” (Job 5:937:5). If God acts in ways that cannot be fathomed and is beyond human comprehension, then the miraculous life where humans are privileged recipients, cannot be deciphered by the human mind to its grandest manifestation. But we understand its meaning through divine revelation in that God reveals Himself as Love, and His miraculous activities are enveloped in His Love. (Jer.29:11)

The three-dimensional Triune Life/Love is opposed to living the one-dimensional solitary life of the fallen humanity inherited from Satan through Adam’s rebellion. For additional information about the Triune Life: http://bulamanriver.net/?p=8036. Also at: http://bulamanriver.net/9092.                                               

**Bulamanriver: To read the different facets of the life of the Bulamanriver, you may obtain a copy of my book, “Bula” Man-River, from Amazon.com; xulonpress.com, barnesandnoble.com, and other online book stores. All proceeds will go towards furthering the work of Gospel of Jesus Christ around the world.

Bulamanriver: Book Cover by Author

*Mission Statement: Read the Triune Love Mission, Vision, and Value statements at: http://bulamanriver.net/8664

All scriptures are taken from the NIV Version 2011, unless stated otherwise.

Note: All information is copy-write material. Any information obtained from this website that is used for publication should be acknowledged by citing the website address, date of acquisition and information pertinent to original authorship. For general guidelines regarding web citations see The Guide for Citing Electronic Information. Thank you!


GOD’S LOVE IS THE HUMAN SPIRITUAL GRAVITY, BY KIANG P LEE

Greetings once more Friends! The Bible says plainly without reservation or hyperbole, “God is Love” (1John 4:8, 16) God has eternally existed in Love, for God is Love. The divine Love, whether read as a noun and verb, describes God’s name, and how, what, and why, His activity is all about. Since God has eternally existed without beginning or end, then Love has likewise always existed without beginning nor end, He (Love) has always existed when nothing else was.

The flip side of God’s nature is freedom – that is where human free-will originate. You cannot have Love without freedom, nor freedom without Love.

“God Is Love” (Wiki Commons)

All the physical and material universe originate from God’s Love through His creative powers. So, Love has eternally existed for “God is Love.” On the other hand, rebellion from which evil, fear, and sin gives birth is the opposite of Love. Rebellion has a beginning, because it can never stem from God’s eternal Love. Anything that did not come from God is temporal in nature and cannot and will not be sustained for any length of time, whereas, God in His Love is timeless and eternal.

Freedom Wall Art - Photograph - It Was For Freedom by Gail Peck
Freedom, The Inverse of God’s Nature of Love (pixels)

The Bible tells us that all evil started with the archangel Lucifer’s rebellion against God. (Isa.14:12-14) So, rebellion and sin had a beginning – a starting point. Therefore, it has only one outcome – it will end in complete oblivion and demise for the simple fact it stands opposed to God’s immutable, unchanging, and eternal Love. Only Love (God) exists for eternity. (1 John 4:8, 16)

So, this is when rebellion and sin originate – with Lucifer uttering his self-centered and outlandish decision, “For you said to yourself, ‘I will ascend to heaven and set my throne above God’s stars. I will preside on the mountain of the gods far away in the north. I will climb to the highest heavens and be like the Most High.’” (Isa.14:13-14). Lucifer wanted to be God himself by unseating the Creator through an angelic rebellion. He convinced one third of the angels to follow his revolt. (Rev.12:9, 3-4).

Lucifer Cast from Heaven After His Rebellion (Wiki Commons)

But they were cast out from heaven and bound to this earth as their prison. (Rev.12:9) God created Lucifer an archangel and called him the “shining morning star, bringer of light.” (Isa.14:12-14; also Ezek. 28:13-17). How the created ever entertained the thought of deposing the Creator, is beyond logic and comprehension. How can anyone displace, what for eternity, has been the essence of life which fills all that is both seen and unseen. Yet, it happened, we can only make an unqualified guess about Lucifer’s choice.

Perhaps, he allowed his brightness to get the better of him, which scripture alluded to – Ezek.28:14-17. A timely lesson for us and all creation for that matter. So, we see rebellion, revolt, and evil has a beginning, On the other hand, Love does not – Love has always existed as God has always been for eternity. Lucifer became the devil, meaning adversary, after his sin of revolt against God. (Isa.14:12-14)

From the above we see can surmise that spiritual gravity can be categorized into two spiritual forces which is at work in the affairs of humanity and all of creation. The two forces are the spirit energy of God’s Love from which all grace and good originate; and the evil energy of rebellion and sin, which opposes and contradicts God’s Love, from which all evil and wickedness arise. We have established God is eternal and fills all eternity with His divine Love.

So, anything that exists in contradiction to and in violation of His infallible Love has to have a beginning, and is temporal and fleeting by nature. Nothing will challenge the all-embracing God who fills all of space and time, and the entire creation in matters seen and unseen, with and in His Love.

The Spiritual Gravity of God’s Love Is As True and Real As Physical Gravity (Wiki Commons)
Gravity Wall Art - Photograph - Sisyphus by Jeffrey Hummel
You Can Read Romans Chapters 5-7 To Learn More of God’s Love and How Sin’s Power Is Broken

These two forces are constantly and immutably spiritual, not physical. They are just as real as the unseen physical law of gravity. Although physical gravity is unseen, we believe it to be true because we can prove its reality, physically speaking. The two spiritual forces are real as physical gravitational force, however, the evidence and corroboration of its existence in reality does not work in exactly the same way as physical gravity.

These two spiritual gravitational forces (Love/sin, holy/evil, grace/fear, other-centered/self-centered) affect humans indirectly through the laws that govern its function. That’s to say, as true as the two spiritual gravitational forces are, it is vital to realize that its function in human life is determined through the choice people make as it concerns the laws which govern its function. In other words, God’s Love and its counterpart fear, are the gravitational forces in the spiritual environment (eternity).

Just as we compensate everything we do to counterweigh and neutralize the negative effect of the gravitational energy of our physical environment, like creating a chair to break our fall, so must we do likewise with the spiritual gravity that is regulated by human choice of the two opposing laws which govern spiritual gravity. Here’s the difference, we don’t learn to live within the two spiritual gravitational energies, as we do within our physical gravity, because the spiritual gravitational outcome and effect does not immediately penalize us as physical gravity does.

Hence, the Bible tells us this, “When evil people are not punished right away, (like physical gravity) it makes others want to do evil, too” (Eccl.8:11, italics mine). The spiritual gravity works in a roundabout manner, but is just as real as physical gravity.

What are the laws that govern the function of the two spiritual gravitational forces? The laws are, 1) the law of God’s Love; and 2) the law of rebellion, fear and sin generated by the devil, which oppose God’s divine Love . These two laws are real and affect and touch all human actions and relationships and the world around us. Anyone who breaks or keeps them will be either blessed or cursed depending upon their response to them. Through them, we live in freedom, or in we live bondage. By them we receive true life and grow and discover our true self and destiny, or we live in darkness with our false self that will end in torment and death. (Eph.4:22-24)

Paul clarified these two laws this way, “For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death” (Rom.8:2, NASB). This passage identifies the two laws which govern the human spiritual gravity, under the terms, “The law of the Spirit of life.” The second is “the law of sin and death.”

White Dove Canvas Prints
The Dove, Symbol of God’s Love – “The Law of The Spirit” (Wiki Commons)

What is “the law of Spirit and life?” It is the law of God’s divine Love. Paul explains for us the different shades or fruits of God’s Love in the Bible. The word ‘fruits’ simply means a person’s ‘actions.’ Paul gives us an inventory of the Love-fruits in his letter to the Corinthians. Here is a summary of  God’s Love-fruits: *patience, *kindness, *contentedness, *the fruit of being modest and unboastful, *humility, *the fruit of honor, *the fruit of unselfishness, *the fruit of calmness and dignity, *the fruit of forgiveness and compassion, *the fruit of delighting in good and shunning evil, *the fruit of tolerance, *the fruit of responsibility, *the fruit of enduring hope, *the fruit of steadfast perseverance, *joy, *peace, *goodness, *faith, *gentleness, *self-control, *the fruit of zeal and spiritual fervor, *The fruit of gratitude and thankfulness, *the fruit of friendship, *the fruit of sharing and generosity, *the fruit of prayerfulness, *the fruit of hospitality, etc. (1 Cor.13; also Gal.5:22-23Rom.12:9-21)

These Love-fruits reveal the holy Love-emotions of the Tri-Personal Being of God, and how the Father, Son, and Spirit have eternally existed in their relationship with each other from eternity. I encourage you to visit my post titled, “Our Human Response In The Triune Life – LOVE!” at: http://bulamanriver.net/9199.

God’s Love-Fruits Are For Human Fellowship and Relationship (Wiki Commons)

Then Paul says clearly Gods’ Love is deposited in humans through the Holy Spirit, “God’s Love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us” (Rom.5:5). Paul explains we exist in Love through the fruits (acts) of Love we read in the Bible which expounds to us the various tones of expression of our Love for each other, just as God does in His Tri-Personal Being. (Read 1 Cor.13)

He explains what we are to do with His Love, “Owe nothing to anyone—except for your obligation to Love one another. If you Love your neighbor, you will fulfill the requirements of God’s law (spiritual gravity). For the commandments say, ‘You must not commit adultery. You must not murder. You must not steal. You must not covet.’ These—and other such commandments—are summed up in this one commandment: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ Love does no wrong to others, so Love fulfills the requirements of God’s law” (Rom.13:8-10, NLB; Rom.7:12, italics mine).

So, “the law of the Spirit and life” basically means to “Love your neighbor as yourself.” To come to this blessed place, there’s a vital prerequisite, “The law of the Spirit and life” refers to the good news of the gospel and the new life of faith in Christ that we can live through the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit. (John 3:16; Rom.5:5) Humans cannot live this divine Love-inspired and Love-led life without Jesus who was and is responsible for the investiture of God’s Spirit (Love) in a person’s life. (John 16:7; Rom.5:5; Act.2:38) That’s to say the Holy Spirit can only be realized with the Messiah’s coming to first cleanse and reconcile humanity to God.

Serpent, Symbol for the Devil -“The Law of Sin and Death” (Wiki Commons)

What is “the law of sin and death?” We turn to Paul’s writings again, “You also have died to the law (of sin and death) through the body of Christ, so that you may belong to another, to Him who has been raised from the dead, in order that we may bear fruit for God. For while we were living in the flesh, our sinful passions, aroused by the law, were at work in our members to bear fruit for death. But now we are released from the law (spiritual gravity of of sin and death), having died to that which held us captive, so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit (and life) and not in the old way of the written code.” (Rom.7:4-6, ESV; also Gal.2:20; italics mine).

Think of everything which opposes the fruits of God’s Love as listed above, and you will see and understand “the law of sin and death.” You can read the list of God’s Love-fruits and its opposing fear-fruits (sin) of the devil. Just as freedom is the flipside of Love, fear is the flipside of sin. Read the opposing fruits of Love and fear (sin), at: http://bulamanriver.net/9199. Scroll down the article to paragraph titled, ‘To Be or Not To Be.’

Humans are all gifted differently, so these fruits and characteristic of the Spirit does not mean He is legalistic and hard and fast. But though He is constant in His Love, He is very much dynamic and personalizing as He relates to each of us according to our gifting in Love. Our individual responsiveness and move to His Love will be what makes all the difference.

Through Christ’s mediation as humanity’s Savior and High Priest, we become the righteousness of God through the Spirit living within us who empowers us for a life of holy Love. (2 Cor.5:21) Anything that promotes a way of life against God’s Love is defined as the opposing gravitational energy of the “law of sin and death.”

Jesus Christ, Messiah and Savior of Humanity From Sin and Death (Wiki Commons)

So, we see the two opposing laws which govern human spiritual gravity explained from Scripture above. They are both real, tangible, and consequential, like physical gravity. The only difference between the physical and spiritual gravity is the cause and effect dynamic which plays out based upon the interplay of human choice. Whereas physical gravity is immediately punishing if we’re foolish to break it, spiritual gravity is affected in a roundabout manner through the human choice of the two terminal spiritual gravitational laws. As I said earlier, spiritual gravity will break a person as surely if we recklessly break physical gravity.  

I hope that using the metaphor and analogy of physical gravity to explain the reality of God’s spiritual gravity of Love and life, we can understand His Love is true and real, just as surely as sin and death is opposed to the divine Love. Think of the force of gravity in our physical environment, as the counterpart to God’s Love as the gravitational energy in His spiritual environment (eternity).

In other words, what gravity is to our physical realm, Love is to our spiritual environment. When evildoers break the spiritual Love-gravity it hurts them, just as surely as breaking physical gravity hurts anyone who breaks it. We see this happening all over the world today before our very eyes. This spiritual gravity (Love) is real. It’s not a mere empty metaphor. Everything we do is connected and carries implied and conditional (good or evil) consequences based upon our interaction with the gravitational forces governing our lives .

All the suffering, pain, sorrows, man’s inhumanity to man, we witness in the world today is the result of man defying the spiritual gravity of God’s Love which we all inhabit. If you like, we’re all inhabitants of God’s country called Love, and governed by its laws. The Bible calls this divine sphere God’s Kingdom, of which we are all citizens since humanity was created in God’s image and made to be His offspring. (Phi.3:20; John 14:2; Gen.1:26-27)

Crown Of Thorns Wall Art - Painting - Crown of Thorns Glass Mosaic by Mia Tavonatti
Jesus Took All Our Human Evil, Sin, Pain, Suffering, and Death to His Cross in Our Place as Substitute To Free Us From The Penalty Of the Spiritual Gravity Of Sin and Death (1 Pet.2:24; Isa.53:4; Pixels)

Evil is confined to this earth and nowhere else in the universe because of man’s fall to evil at the hands of the devil. (Gen.3) The Bible show this earth will be consumed by fire and brimstone to destroy all semblance evil and usher in a new earth and heavens, where God dwells with His then immortal children upon earth. (2 Pet.3:10; Rev.21:1-5)

But more so for Love, because Love exists in all of space and time and the universe, and is the spiritual gravitational energy governing human relationships. Love is the Triune template of the Tri-Personal God in whom all of life derive and secure its existence into perpetuity

Here’s the difference, we don’t learn to live within Love’s spiritual gravity, as we do within our physical gravity, because the spiritual gravitational force (Love) does not immediately penalize us like physical gravity. The Bible tells us this, “Because the sentence against evil deeds is so long in coming, people in general think they can get by with murder” (Eccl.8:11, MSG) You see, all our acts are interrelated like God in His Triunity, is interconnected in ONE God as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Jesus prayed to His and our Father about this unity, “I pray that they will all be one, just as You and I are one—as You are in Me, Father, and I am in You. And may they be in Us so that the world will believe You sent Me. I have given them the glory You gave Me, so they may be one as We are one. I am in them and You are in Me. May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that You sent Me and that You love them as much as You love Me” (John 17:21-23).

Rublev’s Icon of The Trinity (Wiki Commons)

On the physical level, we learn very quickly that we need hand rails to prevent a fall by the force of our physical gravity, but fail to equate breaking Love’s spiritual gravity with the same presence of mind and inherent urgency. So, we’re frivolous when it comes to evil, let alone investigate its causal outcome. Thus, we suffer all its problematic consequences of living a vicious cycle in this meaningless life-bubble ignorant of God’s Love-gravity. (Eccl.1:2) Why, because man does not understand what Love truly is and its reality and effect upon us.

I sincerely hope you will see the light of God’s Love as in the day of Jesus when the people saw Him as the Light of God’s very essence of Love. (Matt.4:16) The only reality in life is God’s Triune Love, and everything else is fleeting. Evil, like a meaningless bubble, pops and disappears in God’s sphere of Love. His Love surrounds and caresses us, and all we have to do is embrace Him. (Psa.139)

Peter said this, “By His divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life. We have received all of this by coming to know Him (Jesus), the one who called us to Himself by means of His marvelous glory and excellence. And because of His glory and excellence, He has given us great and precious promises. These are the promises that enable you to share His divine nature and escape the world’s corruption caused by human desires.” (2 Peter 1:3–4).

Freedom Wall Art - Photograph - American Freedom Collection V8 by Lightboxjournal
Living the Believer’s Life is a Journey of Faith (pixels)

Petition: Friends, as I have closed my post in the past, I customarily give our readers the opportunity to give their lives to our Maker. I thank you for investing your precious time with me in the sharing of the good news of Jesus who has enabled us to live the Triune Life* through the 3 Ascents. Jesus is alive today as our High Priest in heaven seated at His Father’s side, and ceaselessly mediating for us.

I hope that in your heart of heart you will receive Him as your personal Savior, receive God’s Spirit, and be part of living this glorious humanity made children of God forever. (1 Sam.16:7; Jer.17:10) You can privately and quietly pray the prayer below in your heart. I am asking you to pray this prayer as a human being Christ died for, regardless of your background. All are inducted into the one mankind Jesus saved, not into any religion, religious sect or denomination – but into the glorious humanity that Christ is preparing as the holy temple for God’s dwelling:

Prayer: “Almighty God, Father of all humanity, forgive me of all my sins for I receive Your Son, Jesus, as my personal Savior. In Your incalculable grace, thank you for recuing me and my loved ones, and all humanity, from the enemy’s fearful and destructive waters, and bringing us home into the life-giving waters of your Ocean of Love. Grant Your promised celestial life in Your Son through Your Holy Spirit, and open my eyes to the wondrous gifts you have conferred upon us all so we may serve one another in your Love. May Your Love guide and protect me and my Loved ones always, and bring us all into Your beloved and divine Kingdom. I praise and thank You, Amen.”

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 1024px-Rubens_Praying_Hands.jpg
The Resurrection to Immortality and Deification of Humanity Created In God’s Image (Wiki Commons) Prayer is A Profound One-On-One Spiritual Love Dialogue Between a Person and God the Father in Heaven (Wiki Commons)

Welcome to the celestial life of Love in God’s holy, eternal Family. (1 Tim.6:19) Then keep in touch with God’s Word for you by reading and studying your Bible, and visiting this blog and website and look at various subjects that may be relevant for your situation – go to: http://bulamanriver.net. You can email me with your questions at – bulamanriver@gmail.com.

Blessing: Until we meet again in my next post, may the blessings of the God who ceaselessly expresses Himself in His dependable Triune Love, be with you and your loved ones always. May the Spirit enliven your spirit and make all things concerning you possible as you live the “Triune Life”*. In closing, pray for God’s intervention with regard to the pandemic that is sweeping this world. Finally, find strength in the Lord’s Joy.

Farewell for now!

Kiang,  (Your Servant and Friend in Christ)                                                        

*Triune Life: “Triune Life” speaks of the process of theosis or deification of humanity. What is theosis or deification? “It refers to apotheosis, meaning “making divine.” Theosis or deification is a transformative process whose aim is likeness to or union with God (as taught by the Eastern Orthodox Church and Eastern Catholic Church).” (Wikipedia.org) The belief in the process of ‘deification’ is understood in accordance with Jesus’ teaching, when He said, “Is it not written in your Law, ‘I have said you are “gods” ’? If He called them ‘gods,’ to whom the Word of God came—and Scripture cannot be set aside (cannot be broken)” (John 10:34-35; Psa.82:6). (You can read about the Triune Life at: http://bulamanriver.net/9199, and other posts)

The Resurrection to Immortality and Deification of Humanity Created In God’s Image (Wiki Commons)

I have written about this subject of ‘deification’ in my blogs under the theme ‘substitution’ and ‘attribution’ (see, http://bulamanriver.net/564), where I showed how Jesus came as God incarnate (Immanuel) to assume our sinful humanity in order to save mankind from sin and death for the express purpose of human deification. (Matt.1:23; Rom.3:10-12, 18, 23; John 3:16; 1 Cor.15:50-55; Rom.8:29) Further, we read the following, “As a process of transformation, theosis is brought about by the effects of catharsis (purification of mind and body) and theoria (‘illumination’ with the ‘vision’ of God). According to Eastern Christian teaching, theosis is very much the purpose of human life. It is considered achievable only through a synergy (or cooperation) between human activity and God’s uncreated energies.” (Wikipedia.org)

So, the “Triune Life” reveals the intersection of human life and activity and the uncreated divine energy flowing from the Tri-Personal Being of God of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. It is a way of life which explains that process of theosis whereby humans are transformed in body, mind, and spirit by the Love of God. God’s uncreated energy is His Love. So, the foundational tenet of the “Triune Life” is based upon the Love of God, for “God is Love” (1 John 4:8, 16). Thereby, it can also be called aptly, the “Triune Love.”

Rublev’s Icon of the Trinity (Wiki Commons)

I had coined the term “Triune Love” and “Triune Life,” to refer to a person who lives the three-dimensional life within the Tri-Personal Godhead of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. (Matt.28:19) This is opposed to the one-dimensional human way of life influenced by the devil. We see God’s Tri-Personal Love move in an inward, outward, and upward trajectory, in this process of theosis which I have called the ‘three ascents.’ The three ascents are three steps which dovetails into one another showing how all three Persons of the Godhead are in the relationship of Love with humanity – where God reveals the fullness of Himself to humanity, both individually and collectively. (2 Cor.13:14; 1 Pet.1:1-2) That’s to say, the act of one is the act of all three, and the act of three is the act of one, making them unified with in Love. (Mar.12:29; Deut.6:4)

Every aspect of human living follows this three-step format revealing the three-dimensional aspect of how the Tri-Personal Being of God in the Father, Son, and Spirit, directly and collectively involved in the life of human believers, individually and collectively to bring humanity to salvation. These three steps move in an ascending order, so I will call them ‘ascents.’ Each ‘ascent’ dovetails into the next and finally reveals the ‘manifestation’ of the topic, which we will call the fourth step, in this case, Love!

Hence, all my articles are framed within this three-step format, or ascents. The subject of the article dovetails into each ascent and spontaneously lead to the manifestation of the divine Love and reveals how humanity is enlightened by God, and cleansed in mind, body, and spirit. The ascents reveal three doors one must enter to attain the manifestation of God’s Love relationship with humanity. The ascents are not to be misconstrued as some ‘secret knowledge’ or mystical activity. Rather, each ascent represents the relationship of Love a human enjoys with the Triune God in the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, throughout a person’s life.

In fact, the ascents are actually three Love relationships the believer encounters with the Tri-Personal God. This three-way relationship is what I have called by the term, “Triune Life” or “Triune Love.” These ascents represent the movement of God’s Love in an inward, outward, and upward, trajectory to bring God’s enlightenment in a person. The fourth step reveals how the article is made to manifest in the life of the person, both individually and then collectively in humanity.

Man’s union with the Triune God, or “Triune Living/Loving,” is made possible by Jesus, who Himself, is one in substance and reality with the Triune Godhead. (John 1:1-2) He took our humanity into the very Being of the Triune Godhead by cleansing it of all sin and rebellion. To live the “Triune Love (Life)” is the miraculous expression of the Spirit (Love) in humans. (Rom.5:5) The miraculous life is the promise of the New Covenant, “I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you shall keep My ordinances, and do them” (Ezek.36:27).

The Bible states, “He (God) does great things that we cannot understand and miracles that we cannot count” (Job 5:9; 37:5). If God acts in ways that cannot be fathomed and is beyond human comprehension, then the miraculous life where humans are privileged recipients, cannot be deciphered by the human mind to its grandest manifestation. But we understand its meaning through divine revelation in that God reveals Himself as Love, and His miraculous activities are enveloped in His Love. (Jer.29:11)

The three-dimensional Triune Life/Love is opposed to living the one-dimensional solitary life of the fallen humanity inherited from Satan through Adam’s rebellion. For additional information about the Triune Life: http://bulamanriver.net/?p=8036. Also at: http://bulamanriver.net/9092.                                              

**Bulamanriver: To read the different facets of the life of the Bulamanriver, you may obtain a copy of my book, “Bula” Man-River, from Amazon.com; xulonpress.com, barnesandnoble.com, and other online book stores. All proceeds will go towards furthering the work of Gospel of Jesus Christ around the world.

Bulamanrive: Book Cover by Author

*Mission Statement: Read the Triune Love Mission, Vision, and Value statements at: http://bulamanriver.net/8664

All scriptures are taken from the NIV Version 2011, unless stated otherwise.

Note: All information is copy-write material. Any information obtained from this website that is used for publication should be acknowledged by citing the website address, date of acquisition and information pertinent to original authorship. For general guidelines regarding web citations see The Guide for Citing Electronic Information. Thank you

NEW YEAR 2021 – THE OFT-FORGOTTEN REASON FOR GOD SENDING HIS SON, BY KIANG P LEE

Greetings Friends! I greet you with a promising and hopeful New Year 2021. The reason for optimism must already be obvious to many now that the vaccine to fight the Covid-19 virus is being rolled out as we speak.

The title of my post speaks of a ‘forgotten reason’ not because the reason is fundamentally unknown, but more out of the fact that it is not generally emphasized compared to other more common aspects of Jesus Christ’s role as Messiah. So, my post in no way minimizes Christ’s various attributes as humanity’s Savior and Mediator. I simply highlight and bring to the fore a vital role Jesus plays that helps us realize a hopeful future as we place our faith in Jesus’ implicative function and responsibility as humanity’s High Priest in heaven today.

The ‘forgotten reason’ I am inspired and ecstatic to share with you for the New Year is God’s ‘principle of imputing’ Christ’s role of Messiah upon humanity to save us from pain, misfortune, misery, and ultimate death, regardless of our backgrounds and many differences. What do I mean by the ‘principle of imputation.’ It is the same if I used the term, ‘attribution.’ It basically means to substitute for another.

The Scriptures express this all-important ‘principle of imputation’ as follows, “If one man’s sin put crowds of people at the dead-end abyss of separation from God, just think what God’s gift poured through one man, Jesus Christ, will do! There’s no comparison between that death-dealing sin and this generous, life-giving gift” (Rom.5:16, MSG). By saying “one man’s sin,” Paul refers to Adam’s fall to sin at the hands of the evil one in Eden . (Gen.3:1-6)

So, Paul tells us that if Adam’s sin can and has consigned humanity to the sin-condition of the devil and thus separation from God, how much more will God’s grace save us by giving His Son Jesus as the Messiah to save and unite us once more to His Love. (John 3:16) The Bible is emphatic, “So, if death got the upper hand through one man’s wrongdoing, imagine the breathtaking triumphant life the one man Jesus Christ provides?” (Rom.5:17).

Jesus Christ – The Substitutionary Atonement (Wiki Commons)

What is God doing here? Through His unfathomable Love and grace, He is imputing His Son’s now glorious life through His imputative role and function of Messiah and High Priest upon all of humanity so we can be forever reconciled to our perfect and holy God. So, all the words of these verses in Romans 5 essentially speaks of the ‘principle of imputation and substitution.’ They tell us how God attributes the work of His Son as Messiah upon humanity to pluck us out of the devil’s jaws of death, and give us true life in His Son.

In a nutshell: the ‘principle of imputation’ means just as one person (Adam) did it wrong and got us in all this trouble with sin and death, another person (Jesus, the Second Adam) did it right and got us out of it. But more than just getting us out of trouble, Jesus got us into life! That is the essence of the ‘principle of imputation.’ God gave His Son to ‘substitute’ for humanity and save us. (Rom.5:18-21; 1 Cor.15:45; Rom.5:14)

But how does God do it all and make this ‘principle of imputation’ work for all humanity? If we go back a few verses in Romans 5, we will see Paul explains the first step, “When Adam sinned, sin entered the world. Adam’s sin brought death, so death spread to everyone, for everyone sinned. Yes, people sinned even before the law was given. But it was not counted as sin because there was not yet any law to break. Still, everyone died—from the time of Adam to the time of Moses—even those who did not disobey an explicit commandment of God, as Adam did” (Rom.5:12-14, italics mine/added; Gen.3:1-6, 11).

Cross, Christ, Faith, God, Jesus, Clouds
The Act of One Is The Act of Three, and The Act of Three is The Act of One

So, all of humanity have the death penalty passed upon them through the trespass of the one man (Adam). (Rom.5:17) No one has been spared from this Adamic death penalty. The Bible states further, “There is no one righteous, not even one…there is no one who seeks God” (Rom.3:10-11)

God pronounced the death penalty upon Adam only after he sinned, saying, “For dust you are, and to dust you shall return” (Gen.3:19). Then God continued to say, “The man (Adam) has become like one of Us… Lest he reach out his hand and take also from the Tree of Life, and eat, and live forever…” (Gen.3:22).

The above passage of Scripture appears to convey that Adam was created with a form of human immortality so he could commune with the divine in Eden, hence, he was created in God’s eternal image. (Gen1:26-27) One of God’s prime and basic makeup and likeness is He occupies everlasting life in Himself. (Isa.40:28; John 10:28; Psa.90:2) Everlasting life is a gift only the perfect God can confer upon humans. Human immortality and the divine holiness are mutually inclusive and goes hand in hand. One cannot do without the other.

So, our first parents would have lived and communed with God in timeless and faithful existence. No one knows how long our first parents remained faithful to God’s Love, since eternity is not measured by time as we know it. They lived for a very long while within the confines of God’s divine Love energy up until the moment of their change resulting from their disobedience and fall into sin. (Gen.3:1-6)

It was not possible for God to create Adam and contrive the curse of death as part of his destiny. Even Satan, humanity’s arch enemy, was created perfect as “Morning Star” until he chose to rebelled against God, and became the devil, the father of evil in the world. (Isa.14:12-14; John8:44; 1 John 3:8) So, Adam was destined to live forever in God’s divine realm and kingdom. (John 3:16; Rev.21:3; Ezek.37:27) Jesus said this about the future of redeemed humanity, “Then the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world” (Matt.25:34).

Death is anathema to God, and represents everything that is totally foreign, offensive, and reprehensible to Him. God is life, and embodies life in all its eternal beauty, splendor, and glory. Therefore, it was impossible for God to incriminate Himself by framing the death penalty upon Adam and his descendants, not by any stretch of the imagination. (2 Cor.5:1; Rom.6:9; Heb.2:14)

By virtue of His divine nature, God can give Adam only that which He embodies – life and Love. Death through sin was not an option for God. (Rom.6:23) For death is non-existent in His divine realm. He created Adam in His likeness to reflect immortal life in His divine kingdom. (Gen.1:26-27) Be that as it may, God tested Adam and warned him of the consequences of his actions. (Gen.2:16-17; Rom.6:16)

Adam and Eve in the eden — Stock Photo
Adam and Eve Lived the Divine Celestial Life in Eden

Adam had brought death upon himself and humanity because of His sin. (Gen.3:1-6; 2:16-17) Paul tells us where death originate from, and what keeps death alive and going, he said, “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom.6:23).

Consider, if you remove the sin-condition that has gripped humanity since the fall of Adam, then you stop the death-march humanity has undergone and is undergoing. It was for this very purpose that God gave up His Son for us, so by imputing Christ’s perfect sacrifice upon humanity, we are thereby declared sinless and death has no power over us. Sin’s death-power is forever broken in Jesus Christ. (Rom.6:4, 9) Instead, we receive God’s grace with the gift of immortality. (John 3:16; 1 Cor.1:30; Rom.8:11; Rom.6:23)

Paul said this about Jesus and His imputative role of Messiah and High Priest over our lives, “God has united you with Christ Jesus. For our benefit God made Him to be wisdom itself. Christ made us right with God; He made us pure and holy, and He freed us from sin” (1 Cor.1:30). Yes, through God’s unfathomable Love, He stands ready to give humanity the gift of immortality and break the power of death over us as He stated from the beginning and promises through His Covenant. (John 3:16; Rom.6:4, 9, NKJV; John 11:25-26; 1 Cor.15:55-57)

Ponder for a moment, how else could Adam and Eve commune with the divine life in Eden, for the Bible states that God told Moses, “For no one (fallen humans) can see Me and live.” (Exo.33:20). Except that Adam and Eve existed in a form of human immortality prior to their sin of disobeying God. The Tree of Life, which represented the Holy Spirit, most likely had sustained our first parents in their celestial life and Love relationship they were privileged to enjoy with the divine God in Eden.

Death entered the human story and became part of the human experience primarily and solely through Adam’s sin, granted that he was influenced and tempted by the evil one. (Gen.3:1-6Rom.5:126:23) After sin entered Adam’s life, his life changed structurally to a physical form of chemical existence which inevitably meant that he was subject to bodily corruption and untimely and ultimate death. This is the spiritual reality of sin and its consequence – “when sin has run its course, it gives birth to death” (Jam.1:15, AMP).

Adam and Eve Banished from Eden for Their Disobedience (Wiki Commons)

That explains why God declared to Adam and Eve after they sinned, “You are (now) dust, and to dust you shall return” (Gen.3:19). Adam and Eve could no longer appear before God for they were spiritually ‘naked,’ meaning, they stood condemned and deprived of life and were clothed in death due to sin. (Gen.3:11; Exo.33:20)

Think about how Jesus was able to restore the many sick people who came to Him for healing – the blind, the deaf, the leper, the lame and disabled, even the dead. (Matt.15:30-31; Luk.7:11-17; John 11:43-44) It was done because He was the ‘light of life’ who personified immortality who placed a temporary halt on the ‘march of death’ that was and is gripping humanity as validated by the physical afflictions and many health issues of the people Jesus had restored. Matthew spoke about Jesus’ eternal heritage as prophesied by Isaiah, “The people living in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned” (Matt.4:16; Isa.9:2).

Life and death are forces from two diametrically opposing worlds, the same as, Love and sin, good and evil. They both can never be harmonized, much less coexist, but rather they spurn and repel each other. Hence, unequivocally our fallen sin-conditioned humanity cannot appear before God or we’ll be vaporized on account of sin and death, just as Moses was warned plainly. (Exo.33:20) God is the very fountain and sole expression of life in all its eternal glory and mystery. (Isa.40:28; 57:15) Through Jesus mankind is recued from death and restored to God and life for eternity. (John 3:16; 1 Cor.3:16; Rom.8:11; 1 Cor.15:54-58)

In essence, it was not until sin first entered and changed Adam into his purely fleshly existence, that time as we understand it begun. The countdown to death was underway for our first parents and by extension all humanity. (Gen.3:19; Rom.5:12, 17) We are now approximately six thousand years removed from the point when sin and death first entered Adam’s life since the dawn of his purely fleshly existence. It was the end result of Adam’s disobedience, but God created humans to reflect His own divine likeness to manifest Love and life, not death. (Gen.1:26-27; Deut.30:19: Gen.2:17; John 3:16)

The Three Steps/Ascents: There are three steps or ascents a human has to navigate and straddle to depict the Love relationship of the Tri-Personal God of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, so humans can be restored to God. As Jesus instructed His disciples, “Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (Matt.28:18-20)

Later Paul uttered this benediction to Christians this way, “May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the Love of God (Father), and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all” (2 Cor.13:14). This depicts what I call the Triune Life* (see appendix below).

Essentially, humans are inducted (baptized) into the life of the Triune God in the Father, Son, and Spirit. (Matt.28:18-20) This three-step process guides humanity into the fourth step (ascent) of entering into the New Covenant with the Triune God. The Covenant is a promise from God to save humanity from the sin-mantle humanity has been garbed in since Adam’s fall through His Son, as John states, “For God so Loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16). This is the New Covenant as specified in the Book of Hebrews. (Heb.8:7-13) There are three steps in order to enter into the New Covenant of God with humanity.

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A Covenant Is a Promise Made Between Two Parties and Ratified for Authenticity (WikinCommons)

I will call this 3-step process the ‘covenant triad.’ The three steps which I call ascents, depicts the relationship of Love humans enter with the Tri-Personal Being of God in the Father, the Son, and the Spirit. (1 Pet.:12, NLT; 2 Thess.2:13) Here are the three steps or ascents which begins with God giving His Holy Spirit to humans to guide us to His Son, and Jesus in turn presents us to the Father as redeemed humanity. I have identified the three steps as it relates to the ‘principle of imputation,’ as: *Departure, *the Blood of Ratification, *Offspring. There’s the fourth ascent which relates to human participation and manifestation, I call, *the Covenant with humanity. Let’s begin…

Ascent 1: God the Holy Spirit – Departure. Let us start with the Spirit depicting God’s Love relationship in the area of departure. What does this ascent mean, what does departure mean? It means in order for a human to enter into a covenant with the holy God, he/she needs the Holy Spirit. Human beings must leave behind his/her former self that was fathered in sin through and from Adam’s fall in Eden. (Gen.3:1-6)

Humanity inherited the rebellious spirit to sin from Adam’s fall, and consequently the ensuing punishment of death. Paul tell us this, “When Adam sinned, sin entered the world. Adam’s sin brought death, so death spread to everyone, for everyone sinned” (Rom.5:12, NLB).

Dove, Symbol of The Holy Spirit (Wiki Commons)

The Spirit gives humans the power of God’s Love to guide them in a life of Love, as Paul told the Romans, “For we know how dearly God Loves us, because He has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with His Love” (Rom.5:5; also 1 Cor.13:2). The Bible says, “If I do not have Love, I am nothing” (1 Cor.13:2).

If the Spirit is the manifestation of God’s holy Love in humans, then sin is the corruptive spirit of rebellion we inherited from Adam, and passed to humanity from the devil. God exists in all the mystery of His holy Love we will never ever know or comprehend for mankind still exists in his fallen state of alienation from Him.

But the two spirits, Love and rebellion (life and death), cannot co-exist for they are contrarian and repel each other – one has to replace the other. God deposits His divine Love and life in humans through the presence of the Spirit to replace the evil spirit of rebellion, sin, and death that comes from the devil himself.

The prophet Amos asked this poignant but consequential question, “Can two walk together without agreeing to meet?” (Amos 3:3) No, two people cannot walk hand in hand if they aren’t going to the same place. Joshua famously said, “As for me and my household, we will serve the Lord,” when he told the tribes of Israel and their elders to choose between serving God or serving the false gods of the nations around them. (Josh.24:15)  

The Spirit is the power of God’s Love that help humans choose to walk together with God in His Loving Covenant, and forsake the rebellious spirit which gives birth to sin in human life. This is what departure mean – it is replicated after ancient Israel’s departure from Egypt for the Promise Land by the power of God, and depicts a life of departing from and leaving behind the life of slavery and bondage to sin of this fallen world, and partnering with God in the life of Love and uprightness. (2 Cor.6:17)

But let us not get ahead of ourselves. We must ask the one all-important question relevant to this first ascent, how can the Spirit be made to come and enter our sin-conditioned human life and unveil and demonstrate God’s power in His Love when we exist in diametrically opposing spirit (state) of existence?

As humans we are clothed in sin, rebellion, and death since Adam’s fall, and God is the absolute expression of life, and magnificently holy in His celestial Love from eternity. (Rom.5:19) Our answer must take us to the primordial and mandatory 2nd ascent in Jesus Christ.

The Act of One Is The Act of Three, and The Act of Three Is The Act of One. (Rublev’s Icon of the Trinity, Wiki Commons)

(Remember the mode of activity of God’s Love in His Tri-Personal Being: the act of One is the act of Three, and the act of Three is the act of One. A solitary act does not exist within the Tri-Personal Being of God. Jesus said, “I can do nothing on My own but say only what the Father taught Me…Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in Me? The words I say to you I do not speak on My own authority. Rather, it is the Father, living in Me, who is doing His work” (John 8:28; 14:10)).

Ascent 2: God the Son, Jesus Christ – The Blood of Ratification. The Scriptures tell us that the New Covenant from God was ratified in Jesus’ blood. (Heb.9:14-15) What does that mean? If you read God’s own words of the Covenant in the Book of Hebrews, it quotes God as saying, “But this is the New Covenant I will make… I will forgive their wickedness, and I will never again remember their sins” (Heb.8:10, 12). In other words, to rescue humanity from death, and give us life – eternal life. (John 3:16) You may read the full text of the Covenant in Hebrews 8:7-13.

So, God’s Covenant promise to mankind is He will establish a way to bring mankind that was separated from Him as a result of sin and our ongoing death march, by forgiving human rebellion and death and erase it forever. (1 Cor.15:53-56)

To do this, God the Father carries out His Covenant promise by giving His only Son Jesus to become human like us, and die as the only perfect sacrifice to atone for us by taking our place, so that we may escape the death penalty and be made right and unified with God’s holy Love for all eternity. (John 3:16)

God’s very divine nature exudes life in the truest sense because He has eternally existed with no beginning, and those who walk with Him must have the identical immortal life too, hence, humanity must be rescued from the penalty of everlasting death and given immortal life through Christ’s mediatory and implicative role of Savior. (John 3:16; also Psa.90:2; Heb.7:3)

Thereby, the Covenant is ratified in Jesus’ blood (life) when He was crucified as Savior to redeem humanity. (Heb.9:14-15; read 9:11-22; also, Lev.17:11). Paul said, “Everything was purified with blood. For without the shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness” (Heb.9:22; Lev.17:11). Through eternal forgiveness in Christ, humanity is saved from everlasting death.

“For without the shedding of blood, there is no forgiveness” (Heb.9:22). (WikiCommons)

Hence, we read Paul’s words to the Corinthians where he said, “God made Him (Jesus) who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God” (2 Cor.5:21; also read Gal.3:13; Rom.8:3). Here, we read the ‘principle of imputation and substitution’ clearly mentioned: God made His Son to be sin for us, that in Him we can be made right with God.

Consequently, since the nature of the Spirit is one of holiness (Holy Spirit), so He cannot enter human life while the condition of sin through the rebellious spirit persists in the human heart and mind. In other words, Love and rebellion cannot coexist for they oppose and repudiate each other. The rebellious spirit which breeds sin and brings death must first be removed and replaced with the Holy Spirit of Love before human life can be made right with God. (Rom.5:5)

John the Baptist was sent by God to prepare and introduce Jesus to the world. John said this about Jesus, “I baptize you with water for repentance. But after me comes One who is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire” (Matt.3:11; John 1:22-23).

Yes, Jesus is the anointed One who was crucified for our cleansing and sanctification, and thereby give passage for the Holy Spirit to enter and empower human life with God’s Love and divine life, we saw in the 1st Ascent. (John 16:7; Rom.5:5) Scripture tells us, “God is Love, and whoever abides in Love abides in God, and God abides in him” (1 John 4:16).

Afterwards, we read Jesus’ own words concerning the gift of the Spirit, “But I tell you I am going to do what is best for you. This is why I am going away. The Holy Spirit cannot come to help you until I leave. But after I am gone, I will send the Spirit to you” (John 16:7, CEV). Jesus’ words were uttered shortly before His death.

What Jesus had just said follows logically in that sin and the rebellious spirit must first be taken away and removed from the human heart and mind by His atoning sacrifice, and only then can the Holy Spirit enter human life whereby humans can be united with God on ‘holy ground,’ so to speak. Paul tell us about our human journey, past, present, and future, “You were once like that. But you were cleansed; you were made holy; you were made right with God by calling on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God” (1 Cor.6:11).

We see how the Spirit is made to come and enter the heart of humanity, and reside in the heart of mankind as the Spirit’s very temple for the purpose of sanctifying (make holy) the human life (temple) for God’s dwelling. (2 Thess.2:13; 1 Pet.1:2) Paul told the Corinthians, “Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in your midst?” (1 Cor.3:16; 1 Pet.2:5).

After Jesus lived a perfect life by defeating the devil’s devious temptations, He went about doing good through the miraculous life He lived. (Matt.4:1-11; Act.10:38) Then He was falsely accused and put to death upon His cross for human redemption. (Matt.26:59; Eph.1:7) But God raised His Son from the dead. Death has no power to hold down a person who is perfect and without sin. (Act.2:24) Therefore, God raised Him and through His resurrection He gave our humanity immortality – He led the way as the first human to be given human immortality for all humanity to follow. (Rom.8:29; also, 1 Cor.15:49; Phi.3:21; 1 John 3:2)

And similarly, it is by the imputation of Jesus’ glorious life that humanity now takes refuge in His glorious perfection in heaven, and thereby God assents to raising mankind to immortality as He did with Jesus’ humanity. (Eph.2:6; Col.3:1; Rom.6:5) As to the human resurrection to immortality, Paul said this, “And if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of His Spirit who lives in you” (Rom.8:11; also 1 Cor.15:53-54). Yes, Christ imputed human immortality upon mankind through His own resurrection.

This is the essence and pinnacle of the ‘principle of imputation and substitution’ where humanity exists vicariously in the life of the glorified life of Christ in heaven, as Paul said, “And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with Him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus” (Eph.2:6; Rom.6:5).

After His resurrection, Jesus appeared to the disciples and, “On one occasion, while He was eating with them, He gave them this command: “Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit” (Act.1:4-5).

“If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” Romans 10:9 (Wiki Commons)

Then on the Day of Pentecost, the Book of Acts records the following, “When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them” (Act.2:1-4). The Spirit came and gave them supernatural power which Jesus had and performed His miracles. (John 14:12)

So, we see that Ascent 1 (Spirit) goes hand in hand with Ascent 2 (Jesus). We must remember the intrinsic symmetry of God’s Love in His Tri-Personal Being where they exist and work interdependently, and never independently. That is, their mode of operation will always be: the act of One is the act of all Three, and the act of Three is the act of One God.

Now, what does the role of Jesus and the Spirit do? Peter tells us this, “God the Father knew you and chose you long ago, and His Spirit has made you holy. As a result, you have obeyed Him and have been cleansed by the blood of Jesus Christ. May God give you more and more grace and peace” (1 Pet.1:2). That brings us the third ascent…

“When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them.” Act.2:1-3.

Ascent 3: God the Father – Offspring. Having received the gifts of His Son as our Savior, and His Spirit (Love) as our Friend manifesting God’s power in us, humanity is presented to God the Father where He invokes His Fatherly blessing of declaring humanity His offspring for eternity. (Gal.3:26; 1 John 3:1; 1 Pet.1:2)

Remember, Jesus having ascended to heaven, He is made humanity’s High Priest and was seated at the Father’s right hand. (Heb.2:17-18; 4:14-16; 8:1-2) The Son is now presiding over humanity’s salvation in His role as humanity’s High Priest, mediating for all our human responses and presents us holy in the Spirit’s Love and keep us in right standing with the Father as children of God.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him” John 3:16-17 (Wiki Commons)

The Scriptures tell us this about Jesus’ role of High Priest in heaven today, “So Christ has now become the High Priest over all the good things that have come. He has entered that greater, more perfect Tabernacle in heaven, which was not made by human hands and is not part of this created world. With His own blood—not the blood of goats and calves—He entered the Most Holy Place once for all time and secured our redemption forever. Just think how much more the blood of Christ will purify our consciences from sinful deeds so that we can worship the living God. For by the power of the eternal Spirit, Christ offered Himself to God as a perfect sacrifice for our sins” (Heb.9:11-12, 14-15).

So, in the Love relationship with the Triune God, the Spirit’s role is to sanctify humans by taking us to Jesus, humanity’s High Priest, who in turn has been eternally elected and ordained to stand in our place as mankind’s Savior and Mediator, who arbitrates for all our human responses, and reconciles us to the Father and made everlasting children. This is the Triune process by which humans are made to participate in the Covenant promise of God.

Whenever we pray the daily prayer Jesus taught His disciples, the so-called Lord’s Prayer, we are in fact reliving this ‘3-Ascent Triune Love relationship’ and thereby always stand as reborn and redeemed offspring and Loved by the Father. (Luk.11:1-4)

This is the eternal manifestation of God’s Triune Love that is ongoing and never ceases. That is why this Lord’s Prayer is prayed daily where we come before God in worship, desiring His Loving Trinitarian will in our lives, imploring His blessing for spiritual and physical sustenance, and petitioning forgiveness in Jesus, and invoking divine protection from the evil one and his cohorts. (Matt.6:9-13) Now, we are brought to the 4th Ascent…

Ascent 4, Humanity – Manifestation of the Covenant, Humanity Made Children of God. What does the 4th Ascent mean? It simply means that after undergoing the process of the Triune Love relationship with Jesus in the Spirit’s power and brought before the Father, as shown in the preceding 3 Ascents, the provisions of the New Covenant is now being manifested in human life.

Love Is The Divine Nature of God in Human Hearts and Minds (Wiki Commons)

Above all, the 4th Ascent show that to bring the Covenant promise to reality in mankind, there is a part that we as humans must play in it (individually and collectively). A Covenant is a promise or undertaking between two parties that’s ratified and sealed in Jesus’ blood. (Heb.9:14-15, 22) A Covenant is reciprocal by nature because it is an agreement based upon a promise made between two parties. God gave humans the gift of freedom so we may choose to enter into His Covenant of Love, as opposed to rebellion and sin. (Deut.30:19; 11:26-28)

In effect, the Covenant is not a one-way street, but works in a two-way street. There is the Promiser (One who gives the promise), and the promisee (one who receives the promise). God is the Promiser, and mankind is the promisee.

So now, let’s look at the 3 ascents where we have seen the Love of the Triune God, and ask what is each of our part in it:

1) Consider our Love participation with the Spirit in the 1st Ascent. After the Spirit was given on Pentecost, the Apostle Peter informs us of our role in this Love relationship with God through His Spirit, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call” (Act.2:38-39).

Black electronic airport board realistic composition with departures time gates and flight directions illustration
The Spirit Gives the Power To Depart From the Life of Sin and Rebellion (freepik)

Recall that one of the provisions of the New Covenant is stated as follows, “I will imprint My Love (laws) upon their minds [even upon their innermost thoughts and understanding], and engrave My Love upon the tablets of their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be My people” (Heb.8:10).

Yes, our part is stated in the meaning of this 1st day and ascent – where departure means we surrender to the Love-force of the Spirit who dwells in us as His temple and tabernacle. (1 Cor.3:16) There is the ‘greater and more perfect tabernacle’ of God in heaven, and on earth God’s tabernacle is the human heart, individually and collectively. (Heb.9:11; 1 Cor.3:16; 1 Pet.2:5)

Paul further declares our part who make up God’s temple on earth when he quotes God, saying, “Therefore, come out from among unbelievers, and separate yourselves from them, says the LORD. Don’t touch their filthy things, and I will welcome you” (2 Cor.6:17). We do this with the help, and under the inspiration of, the Holy Spirit.

The Spirit gives humans the power to make this act of departure possible from the rebellious spirit and world, and turn to God and receive His Spirit of Love to live a life of harmony and symmetry with His Loving divine will instead.  

2) Now, let’s consider our Love participation with Jesus in the 2nd Ascent. I quote the immortal passage from John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. Whoever believes in Him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe has already been condemned, because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son…Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life. Whoever rejects the Son will not see life. Instead, the wrath of God remains on him.” (John 3:16-18, 36).

The 2nd Ascent Calls Upon Us to Exercise Belief and Faith In God’s Work of Rescuing Humanity from Rebellion and Death Through Jesus’ Atoning Sacrifice.

Yes, the 2nd Ascent calls upon us to simply believe – that is, to trust in God’s Love in the provision of His Son to save us and make us His everlasting children. (John 3:16; Gal.3:26; Rom.8:14) This will take the powerful living faith of Jesus. (Gal.2:20, KJV) As Mark’s Gospel says clearly, “Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned” (Mark 16:16). Paul further affirms the necessity of faith, “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him” (Heb.11:6).

Notice, this faith is powerful because it convicts the human heart and mind of the reality of God’s existence, and thereby the reality of His Covenant promise. It provides the assurance in God’s word of crossing over from our mortal realm into the divine realm. But humans were not born with this powerful faith, it must to be given as a gift. Paul makes this abundantly clear, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith–and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God” (Eph.2:8). Since the saving faith is a gift, then it must be Jesus’ Personal faith as other passages support. (Gal.2:20, KJV; Rom.3:22, KJV)

We turn to Paul once more who informs us about this gift of faith, and whose faith it is, “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave Himself for me” (Gal.2:20, KJV, italics for emphasis). Note the words, “I live by the faith of the Son of God.” So, this speaks precisely of the living, powerful, Personal faith of Jesus. In other words, by imputing the very Personal faith of Jesus upon humanity, this is not speaking of our inadequate human faith, but Jesus’ own faith that is living and powerful and can move mountains. (Matt.17:20)

Make no mistake, we have our human faith. The human faith is purely physical and is activated by the five human senses of sight, smell, touch, hear, and taste. We may have heard people say – ‘I will not believe it until I see it with my own eyes,’ – is a classic example of human faith that’s activated by the human senses. Such a faith is inadequate and incapable of taking us into the divine realm of God, much less experience the reality of God’s Love in His Covenant promise.

Jesus’ faith is spiritual and powerful for it is out of the physical world of our human senses. Without Jesus’ own living faith humans can never experience the certainty of God’s reality in their lives. (You may read my post on this topic, titled, “The Saving Living Faith of Jesus,” at: http://bulamanriver.net/21946)

Again, Paul distinguishes the two faiths, which he makes clear in this passage to the Romans – “The righteousness of God which comes by the faith of Jesus to all and on all that believe (with their human faith).” (Rom.3:22, AKJV, italicized for emphasis). As Jesus’ Personal faith grows in our hearts and minds, we’ll see our human faith more distinctly with its shortcomings.

We’ll find the ‘faith-scale’ between the two faiths begin to tip in favor of the faith of Jesus – our limited human faith will have less and less of a role and impact in matters of both the mortal and the divine realms. As John said succinctly, “He must increase, and I must decrease” (John 3:30). Yes, we’ll see Jesus’ faith take more center stage in life, and the human faith have a lesser role and importance, but nonetheless necessary.

When the Scripture says, “The spiritual faith is explained this way, “For we live by faith, not by sight,” it is referencing the living Personal faith of Jesus, not our incompetent human faith which trust in the human senses. (2 Cor.5:7). However incompetent and unsuited in the spiritual realm the human faith may be, it is still very necessary and much needed because God’s work requires our human participation.

Humans utilize the human faith to believe in the faith of Jesus. Our human faith must walk hand-in-hand and in participation with Jesus’ living faith, whereby human faith now looks to the living faith of Jesus for empowerment and execution of God’s Love as it takes on a more central role in our lives.

Human faith alone stand solitary, powerless, and incomplete without the gift of Jesus’ Personal faith. The two faiths now becomes complimentary and harmonious rather than contrarian and conflictful. And this is what we are discussing in the 4th Ascent – our human participation through the merging of the two faiths to make real God’s Covenant promise. (Read more on this topic of faith at: http://bulamanriver.net/21946).

All we are called to do, and can do, is keep confessing our shortcomings as humans, and accepting in faith Jesus’ implicatory and mediatory role to stand in on our behalf whenever we fall short by showing disdain for and disrespect for God’s perfect holy Love.

3) Finally, let us see our participation of Love with the Father in the 3rd Ascent. The Father anoints humanity and make us His offspring through the Loving acts of the Son and the Spirit in the two prior ascents (steps). Consequently, in the prayer Jesus taught us to pray, He said we are to begin by addressing God as, “Our Father in heaven” – it means through Jesus we have been made His children in the Spirit’s presence and power. (Matt.6:9-13).

Scriptures show that both Jesus and the Spirit are prayerfully mediating for humanity before the Father unceasingly – this is their act of Love for each and every human which results in our being anointed divine children of God. (Rom.8:34; Rom.8:26-27) 

Paul wrote to the Roman Christians, and said, “So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when He adopted you as His own children. Now we call him, “Abba, Father.” For His Spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are God’s children. And since we are His children, we are His heirs. In fact, together with Christ we are Heirs of God’s glory. But if we are to share His glory, we must also share His suffering” (Rom.8:15-17). Yes friends you have been made God’s eternal children. Be deeply and joyously thankful!

God’s Covenant Is His Promise to Make Us Children For Eternity Through The Gifts Of His Son and His Spirit.

In closing, let’s recap: since God is totally holy in His Love, and humans fall short with the required holiness to appear before God, therefore, there is the absolute necessity for an Intermediary to step into our place to bridge this impassable holiness chasm which exist between fallen mortal humans and the holy God. (1 Tim.2:5; Act.4:12)

This is the essence of the ‘principle of attribution and substitution’ we have covered today in this post. Paul stated, “God has united you with Christ Jesus. For our benefit God made Him to be wisdom itself. Christ made us right with God; He made us pure and holy, and He freed us from sin” (1 Cor.1:30).

What a place for humanity to take their stand at the very threshold of eternity…before the Father, with Jesus by our side as our Mediator, and the Spirit (Love) as our constant Friend and Helper, anointed as Loving children of God forever. The essence of the 4th Ascent depicting human input with God’s Covenant promise is our participation in believing and receiving the Father’s grace through the imputation of His Son and in the Spirit’s power make divine children out of all humanity. (Rom.8:11) Yes, human immortality is made possible only through Jesus’ own resurrection.

Let’s together pray for all mankind in this most auspices destiny outlined in His Covenant and the Gospels. Let us be eternally thankful to Jesus for taking responsibility for our future in God’s spiritual Kingdom.

Petition: Friends, as I have closed my post in the past, I customarily give our readers the opportunity to give their lives to our Maker. I thank you for investing your precious time with me in the sharing of the good news of Jesus who has enabled us to live the Triune Life* through the 3 Ascents. Jesus is alive today as our High Priest in heaven seated at His Father’s side, and ceaselessly mediating for us.

I hope that in your heart of heart you will receive Him as your personal Savior, receive God’s Spirit, and be part of living this glorious humanity made divine children forever reconciled to our perfect and holy God. (1 Sam.16:7; Jer.17:10) You can privately and quietly pray the prayer below in your heart. I am asking you to pray this prayer as a human being Christ died for, regardless of your background. All are inducted into the one mankind Jesus saved, not into any religion, religious sect or denomination – but into the glorious humanity that Christ is preparing as the holy temple for God’s dwelling:

Prayer: “Almighty God, Father of all humanity, forgive me of all my sins for I receive Your Son, Jesus, as my personal Savior. In Your incalculable grace, thank you for recuing me and my loved ones, and all humanity, from the enemy’s fearful and destructive waters, and bringing us home into the life-giving waters of your Ocean of Love. Grant Your promised celestial life in Your Son through Your Holy Spirit, and open my eyes to the wondrous gifts you have conferred upon us all so we may serve one another in your Love. May Your Love guide and protect me and my Loved ones always, and bring us all into Your beloved and divine Kingdom. I praise and thank You, Amen.”

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 1024px-Rubens_Praying_Hands.jpg
Prayer is A Profound One-On-One Spiritual Love Dialogue Between a Person and God the Father in Heaven (Wiki Commons)

Welcome to the celestial life of Love in God’s holy, eternal Family. (1 Tim.6:19) Then keep in touch with God’s Word for you by reading and studying your Bible, and visiting this blog and website and look at various subjects that may be relevant for your situation – go to: http://bulamanriver.net. You can email me with your questions at – bulamanriver@gmail.com.

Blessing: Until we meet again in my next post, may the blessings of the God who ceaselessly expresses Himself in His dependable Triune Love, be with you and your loved ones always. May the Spirit enliven your spirit and make all things concerning you possible as you live the “Triune Life”*. In closing, pray for God’s intervention with regard to the pandemic that is sweeping this world. Finally, find strength in the Lord’s Joy.

Farewell for now!

Kiang,  (Your Servant and Friend in Christ)                                                         

*Triune Life: “Triune Life” speaks of the process of theosis or deification of humanity. What is theosis or deification? “It refers to apotheosis, meaning “making divine.” Theosis or deification is a transformative process whose aim is likeness to or union with God (as taught by the Eastern Orthodox Church and Eastern Catholic Church).” (Wikipedia.org) The belief in the process of ‘deification’ is understood in accordance with Jesus’ teaching, when He said, “Is it not written in your Law, ‘I have said you are “gods” ’? If He called them ‘gods,’ to whom the Word of God came—and Scripture cannot be set aside (cannot be broken)” (John 10:34-35; Psa.82:6). (You can read about the Triune Life at: http://bulamanriver.net/9199, and other posts)

The Resurrection to Immortality and Deification of Humanity Created In God’s Image (Wiki Commons)

I have written about this subject of ‘deification’ in my blogs under the theme ‘substitution’ and ‘attribution’ (see, http://bulamanriver.net/564), where I showed how Jesus came as God incarnate (Immanuel) to assume our sinful humanity in order to save mankind from sin and death for the express purpose of human deification. (Matt.1:23; Rom.3:10-12, 18, 23; John 3:16; 1 Cor.15:50-55; Rom.8:29) Further, we read the following, “As a process of transformation, theosis is brought about by the effects of catharsis (purification of mind and body) and theoria (‘illumination’ with the ‘vision’ of God). According to Eastern Christian teaching, theosis is very much the purpose of human life. It is considered achievable only through a synergy (or cooperation) between human activity and God’s uncreated energies.” (Wikipedia.org)

So, the “Triune Life” reveals the intersection of human life and activity and the uncreated divine energy flowing from the Tri-Personal Being of God of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. It is a way of life which explains that process of theosis whereby humans are transformed in body, mind, and spirit by the Love of God. God’s uncreated energy is His Love. So, the foundational tenet of the “Triune Life” is based upon the Love of God, for “God is Love” (1 John 4:8, 16). Thereby, it can also be called aptly, the “Triune Love.”

Rublev’s Icon of the Trinity (Wiki Commons)

I had coined the term “Triune Love” and “Triune Life,” to refer to a person who lives the three-dimensional life within the Tri-Personal Godhead of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. (Matt.28:19) This is opposed to the one-dimensional human way of life influenced by the devil. We see God’s Tri-Personal Love move in an inward, outward, and upward trajectory, in this process of theosis which I have called the ‘three ascents.’ The three ascents are three steps which dovetails into one another showing how all three Persons of the Godhead are in the relationship of Love with humanity – where God reveals the fullness of Himself to humanity, both individually and collectively. (2 Cor.13:14; 1 Pet.1:1-2) That’s to say, the act of one is the act of all three, and the act of three is the act of one, making them unified with in Love. (Mar.12:29; Deut.6:4)

Every aspect of human living follows this three-step format revealing the three-dimensional aspect of how the Tri-Personal Being of God in the Father, Son, and Spirit, directly and collectively involved in the life of human believers, individually and collectively to bring humanity to salvation. These three steps move in an ascending order, so I will call them ‘ascents.’ Each ‘ascent’ dovetails into the next and finally reveals the ‘manifestation’ of the topic, which we will call the fourth step, in this case, Love!

Hence, all my articles are framed within this three-step format, or ascents. The subject of the article dovetails into each ascent and spontaneously lead to the manifestation of the divine Love and reveals how humanity is enlightened by God, and cleansed in mind, body, and spirit. The ascents reveal three doors one must enter to attain the manifestation of God’s Love relationship with humanity. The ascents are not to be misconstrued as some ‘secret knowledge’ or mystical activity. Rather, each ascent represents the relationship of Love a human enjoys with the Triune God in the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, throughout a person’s life.

In fact, the ascents are actually three Love relationships the believer encounters with the Tri-Personal God. This three-way relationship is what I have called by the term, “Triune Life” or “Triune Love.” These ascents represent the movement of God’s Love in an inward, outward, and upward, trajectory to bring God’s enlightenment in a person. The fourth step reveals how the article is made to manifest in the life of the person, both individually and then collectively in humanity.

Man’s union with the Triune God, or “Triune Living/Loving,” is made possible by Jesus, who Himself, is one in substance and reality with the Triune Godhead. (John 1:1-2) He took our humanity into the very Being of the Triune Godhead by cleansing it of all sin and rebellion. To live the “Triune Love (Life)” is the miraculous expression of the Spirit (Love) in humans. (Rom.5:5) The miraculous life is the promise of the New Covenant, “I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you shall keep My ordinances, and do them” (Ezek.36:27).

The Bible states, “He (God) does great things that we cannot understand and miracles that we cannot count” (Job 5:9; 37:5). If God acts in ways that cannot be fathomed and is beyond human comprehension, then the miraculous life where humans are privileged recipients, cannot be deciphered by the human mind to its grandest manifestation. But we understand its meaning through divine revelation in that God reveals Himself as Love, and His miraculous activities are enveloped in His Love. (Jer.29:11)

The three-dimensional Triune Life/Love is opposed to living the one-dimensional solitary life of the fallen humanity inherited from Satan through Adam’s rebellion. For additional information about the Triune Life: http://bulamanriver.net/?p=8036. Also at: http://bulamanriver.net/9092.                                               

**Bulamanriver: To read the different facets of the life of the Bulamanriver, you may obtain a copy of my book, “Bula” Man-River, from Amazon.com; xulonpress.com, barnesandnoble.com, and other online book stores. All proceeds will go towards furthering the work of Gospel of Jesus Christ around the world.

Bulamanrive: Book Cover by Author

*Mission Statement: Read the Triune Love Mission, Vision, and Value statements at: http://bulamanriver.net/8664

All scriptures are taken from the NIV Version 2011, unless stated otherwise.

Note: All information is copy-write material. Any information obtained from this website that is used for publication should be acknowledged by citing the website address, date of acquisition and information pertinent to original authorship. For general guidelines regarding web citations see The Guide for Citing Electronic Information. Thank you

CHRISTMAS 2020, BY KIANG P LEE

It is with an utterly heavy heart that I greet you this Christmas. We are presently living through the most urgent times for humanity because of the Covid-19 pandemic that is currently sweeping our world. Many, many, lives have been lost to this dreaded and terrible disease. I realize it is a tall order to ask for joy and be celebratory due to the devastating loss of life many have suffered and incurred in 2020.

Our hearts goes out to all the families that have lost loved ones as a result of this terrible plague, and “We mourn with those who mourn” as Love (God) would have us do. (Rom. 12:15; 1 John 4:8). I realize that so many of you have beautiful stories of loved ones and friends you would have liked to share in loving memory. I am heartfeltly sorry for your loss, we mourn with you. Their memories are precious, and as long as we serve a God who is our Loving Creator, they will never be forgotten. That is the good news about the message of Christmas – Christ came to save us…in the sense of our eternal restoration.

Adoration of the Baby Jesus By The Wise Men (Wiki Commons)

We are thankful to the Almighty for the vaccines that has been developed and is being rolled out as a potential cure and help blunt the progression of this cursed virus. The vaccine comes as a timely defensive buffer for the greater population worldwide.

With that, I would just like to add a word the Spirit has inspired me to share with you all. The Scriptures tell us not even a bird “falls to the ground without your Father knowing it” (Matt.10:29, NLT). If the life of birds are precious to God, then the life of humans are of far greater treasure to Him. This passage from Matthew continues to say that God “pays greater attention to you, down to the last detail—even numbering the hairs on your head! So, you’re worth more than a million birds” (Matt.10:29-31, MSG).

The Scriptures also tell us this, “Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all fall asleep (dead), but we shall all be changed. In an instant, in [the] twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must needs put on incorruptibility, and this mortal put on immortality… So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that your toil in the Lord is not in vain” (1 Cor.15:51-53, 58). Here we read about the utter depth of God’s Love in granting immortality to humanity so we may dwell with Him as our Father and with His Loving family forever.

Adoration of the Baby Jesus by The Shepherds (Wiki Commons)

With that message from God of a promising, hopeful, bright, and joy-filled future, I wish you all blessed peace this Christmas that only your heavenly Father can fill your hearts with. (You may want to read my article about Christmas, titled, “For Unto Us A Child Is Given” at: http://bulamanriver.net/9256).

Until we meet again, may the Lord grant you the courage and fortitude this Christmas to allow God to empower you with His celestial Joy. (Neh.8:10) 

Kiang (Your Servant in Christ)

*Triune Life: “Triune Life” speaks of the process of theosis or deification of humanity. What is theosis or deification? “It refers to apotheosis, meaning “making divine.” Theosis or deification is a transformative process whose aim is likeness to or union with God (as taught by the Eastern Orthodox Church and Eastern Catholic Church).” (Wikipedia.org) The belief in the process of ‘deification’ is understood in accordance with Jesus’ teaching, when He said, “Is it not written in your Law, ‘I have said you are “gods” ’? If He called them ‘gods,’ to whom the Word of God came—and Scripture cannot be set aside (cannot be broken)” (John 10:34-35Psa.82:6). (You can read about the Triune Life at: http://bulamanriver.net/9199, and other posts)

The Resurrection to Immortality and Deification of Humanity Created In God’s Image (Wiki Commons)

I have written about this subject of ‘deification’ in my blogs under the theme ‘substitution’ and ‘attribution’ (see, http://bulamanriver.net/564), where I showed how Jesus came as God incarnate (Immanuel) to assume our sinful humanity in order to save mankind from sin and death for the express purpose of human deification. (Matt.1:23Rom.3:10-121823John 3:161 Cor.15:50-55Rom.8:29) Further, we read the following, “As a process of transformation, theosis is brought about by the effects of catharsis (purification of mind and body) and theoria (‘illumination’ with the ‘vision’ of God). According to Eastern Christian teaching, theosis is very much the purpose of human life. It is considered achievable only through a synergy (or cooperation) between human activity and God’s uncreated energies.” (Wikipedia.org)

So, the “Triune Life” reveals the intersection of human life and activity and the uncreated divine energy flowing from the Tri-Personal Being of God of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. It is a way of life which explains that process of theosis whereby humans are transformed in body, mind, and spirit by the Love of God. God’s uncreated energy is His Love. So, the foundational tenet of the “Triune Life” is based upon the Love of God, for “God is Love” (1 John 4:816). Thereby, it can also be called aptly, the “Triune Love.”

Rublev’s Icon of The Trinity (Wiki Commons)

I had coined the term “Triune Love” and “Triune Life,” to refer to a person who lives the three-dimensional life within the Tri-Personal Godhead of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. (Matt.28:19) This is opposed to the one-dimensional human way of life influenced by the devil. We see God’s Tri-Personal Love move in an inward, outward, and upward trajectory, in this process of theosis which I have called the ‘three ascents.’ The three ascents are three steps which dovetails into one another showing how all three Persons of the Godhead are in the relationship of Love with humanity – where God reveals the fullness of Himself to humanity, both individually and collectively. (2 Cor.13:141 Pet.1:1-2) That’s to say, the act of one is the act of all three, and the act of three is the act of one, making them unified in Love. (Mar.12:29Deut.6:4)

Every aspect of human living follows this three-step format revealing the three-dimensional aspect of how the Tri-Personal Being of God in the Father, Son, and Spirit, directly and collectively involved in the life of human believers, individually and collectively to bring humanity to salvation. These three steps move in an ascending order, so I will call them ‘ascents.’ Each ‘ascent’ dovetails into the next and finally reveals the ‘manifestation’ of the topic, which we will call the fourth step, in this case, Love!

Hence, all my articles are framed within this three-step format, or ascents. The subject of the article dovetails into each ascent and spontaneously lead to the manifestation of the divine Love and reveals how humanity is enlightened by God, and cleansed in mind, body, and spirit. The ascents reveal three doors one must enter to attain the manifestation of God’s Love relationship with humanity. The ascents are not to be misconstrued as some ‘secret knowledge’ or mystical activity. Rather, each ascent represents the relationship of Love a human enjoys with the Triune God in the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, throughout a person’s life. In fact, the ascents are actually three Love relationships the believer encounters with the Tri-Personal God. This three-way relationship is what I have called by the term, “Triune Life” or “Triune Love.” These ascents represent the movement of God’s Love in an inward, outward, and upward, trajectory to bring God’s enlightenment in a person. The fourth step reveals how the article is made to manifest in the life of the person, both individually and then collectively in humanity.

Man’s union with the Triune God, or “Triune Living/Loving,” is made possible by Jesus, who Himself, is one in substance and reality with the Triune Godhead. (John 1:1-2) He took our humanity into the very Being of the Triune Godhead by cleansing it of all sin and rebellion. To live the “Triune Love (Life)” is the miraculous expression of the Spirit (Love) in humans. (Rom.5:5) The miraculous life is the promise of the New Covenant, “I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you shall keep My ordinances, and do them” (Ezek.36:27).

The Bible states, “He (God) does great things that we cannot understand and miracles that we cannot count” (Job 5:937:5). If God acts in ways that cannot be fathomed and is beyond human comprehension, then the miraculous life where humans are privileged recipients, cannot be deciphered by the human mind to its grandest manifestation. But we understand its meaning through divine revelation in that God reveals Himself as Love, and His miraculous activities are enveloped in His Love. (Jer.29:11)

The three-dimensional Triune Life/Love is opposed to living the one-dimensional solitary life of the fallen humanity inherited from Satan through Adam’s rebellion. For additional information about the Triune Life: http://bulamanriver.net/?p=8036. Also at: http://bulamanriver.net/9092.                                                  

**Bulamanriver: To read the different facets of the life of the Bulamanriver, you may obtain a copy of my book, “Bula” Man-River, from Amazon.com; xulonpress.com, barnesandnoble.com, and other online book stores. All proceeds will go towards furthering the work of Gospel of Jesus Christ around the world.

Book Cover By Author P K Lee

Mission Statement: Read the Triune Love Mission, Vision, and Value statements at: http://bulamanriver.net/8664

All scriptures are taken from the NIV Version 2011, unless stated otherwise.

Note: All information is copy-write material. Any information obtained from this website that is used for publication should be acknowledged by citing the website address, date of acquisition and information pertinent to original authorship. For general guidelines regarding web citations see The Guide for Citing Electronic Information. Thank you

SPEAKING YOUR PERSONAL TRUTH TO POWER, AND NOT ALLOWING ANYONE TO HIJACK YOUR UNIQUE REALITY IN GOD’S LOVE. BY KIANG P LEE

Greetings once again Friends! You may have seen a recent Netflix documentary called, “The Social Dilemma” (Initial released: Jan. 26th, 2020). I would recommend it to you. The following review of the documentary appeared on Wikipedia, “The Social Dilemma is a 2020 American docudrama film directed by Jeff Orlowski and written by Orlowski, Davis Coombe, and Vickie Curtis. It explores the rise of social media and the damage it has caused to society, focusing on its exploitation of its users for financial gain through surveillance capitalism and data mining, how its design is meant to nurture an addiction, its use in politics, its effect on mental health (including the mental health of adolescents and rising teen suicide rates), and its role in spreading conspiracy theories such as Pizzagate and aiding groups such as flat-earthers.

“The film features interviews with many individuals who give first-hand experiences of working in and around the tech industry. Interviewees state that the existence of social media platforms and big tech has been instrumental in providing positive change for society, however, some decisions and paradigms have caused consequences that are problematic. Throughout the documentary, many former employees, executives and other professionals from top tech, social media, and research backgrounds give their input on the problems that can be found on a variety of online platforms. These interviews are cut together with dramatizations which tell the story of a teenager’s social media addiction interlaced with a representation of how a social media algorithm powered by artificial intelligence may work.” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Social_Dilemma)

The documentary was Netflix Australia’s top ten list and has been popular around the globe. Some media pundits suggest it’s “the most important documentary of our times.” What are the consequences of our growing dependence on social media? As digital platforms increasingly become a lifeline to stay connected, Silicon Valley insiders reveal how social media is reprogramming civilization by exposing what’s hiding on the other side of your screen. Some have even said you will wish you watched this documentary before you started using social media.

These Silicone Valley insiders tell us that there are “whole teams of engineers whose job is to use your psychology against you.” So, these social media platforms aim and work at affecting real-world behavior and emotions of the end-user. The net effect is we become clueless pawns and unwary prey to these media platforms with algorithms that work at confounding social values for truth and freedom (likes, thumbs-up, conspiracies, disinformation, slogans, propaganda, causes), especially with the truth of our personal reality.

Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Pinterest, Social media, Keyboard, Technology (Wiki Commons)

Slowly and insidiously we lose control of who we are until we exchange our self-image for a person that is not true to our Maker’s reality, but a false one that was unsuspectingly manipulated by third parties who are now running the lives of many people.

And the question that must be asked is, who owns our reality, and thereby our futures – personally and collectively? How is each of our personality being cast, shaped, and reshaped? Is our personal freedoms being sacrificed on the altar of the algorithms of Silicone Valley technological companies, on propagandas and conspiracies? Once our human freedom is brought into question in the theater of these social media platforms, in most cases it becomes a moral issue that opens the door to the matter of making choices that in turn affect our personal and collective reality.

A choice is a decision we make where good and bad, right and wrong, where liberty and bondage, are weighed and considered. Humanity was created to be free, so that through our individual liberties we find our own realities that is fashioned in the Creator’s likeness (Gen.1:26-27; John 8:32, 36; Gal.5:1; 2 Cor.3:17)

This Blog is a Christian site dedicated with the worldview based upon values modelled in the Christian Trinitarian perspective. (To read more about what ‘trinitarian perspective’ means, go to: http://bulamanriver.net/6251; also at: http://bulamanriver.net/7458; and http://bulamanriver.net/8036).

There is the Christian perception to social media and the moral imperative it presents that is important for the Christian. Therefore, this blog has always presented its views from the perspective of the Christian Trinitarian believer. That is what this blog site is about, and will continue to do, and is dedicated to its mission.

The real issue behind our social media dilemma boils down to the question of values which dictates our human freedoms and how that affects our personal and collective realities. Each of our reality in turn determines our perspective and worldview that’s modelled after the Creator’s Triune Love and likeness. (Gen.1:26-27; 1 John 4:8)

When media platforms begin to step adversely and don’t allow civil interaction to take place and trample upon values that infringe our freedoms, then it becomes a human issue that has everything to do with who we truly are in our humanity modelled after God’s Love likeness, and thereby our reality. (1 John 4:8, 16; Gen.1:26-27)

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People are all different and possess personalities unique to one’s national, ancestral, ethnic, and cultural identity. Then inside such homogenous groupings, people are further identified into tribal and communal standings and functions. Then holistically the final dissection is identifying the self-conception which determine individual functions in the people’s reality in their God-given gifting – individually and collectively.

That is what determines the individual’s reality as a person in God’s Love-image. (1 John 4:8; Gen.1:26-27) This divine Love likeness is what human personhood is about, and determines the person’s reality. It has been proven each of our fingerprints are unique to each person, that’s how uniquely different we all are. Even identical twins, who share DNA, do not have identical fingerprints. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fingerprint#:~:text=The%20skin%20on%20the%20palmar,do%20not%20have%20identical%20fingerprints).

In biblical terms, each person is individually gifted with the personality to match the divinely-conferred gifts. Hence, we read this passage from scripture, “God in His kindness gave each of us different gifts. As good stewards of the manifold grace of God, each of you should use whatever gift one has received to serve one another” (Rom.12:6; 1 Pet.4:10). Life and gifts come fused together and are inseparable – that is the reality of our personhood and humanity.

No human can claim to be without a gift given him or her by the Creator. (Rom.11:29) Humans possess gifts because they are fashioned in God’s Love likeness. Paul said, “For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable,” to mean God has blessed humanity with His own image and likeness through the gifts He has conferred upon us from birth. (Rom.11:19). Paul reminds us, “For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands” (2 Tim.1:6; 4:14). Therefore, a person’s ‘life-gift,’ purpose, dream, calling, or whatever one may wish to call it, is a magnet in the person’s life.

We have heard the adage, “Life is a gift,” denoting that the gift is the expression of who the person is. This is the mind-blowing truth about the beauty of our humanity which is manifested in the vast array of gifts God has so marvelously conferred upon and dispersed in all of mankind. To destroy that ‘life-gift’ is to erase a person’s divine personhood that is his/her identity bestowed by the Creator. In short, each of our ‘life-gift’ defines our humanity that is created in the diverse image and likeness of God in His Tri-Personal Being. (Gen.1:26-27; Matt.28:18-20; 2 Cor.13:14)  

God Is Love (1 John 4:8)

The Bible tells us this about God who created our vast universe and all the heavenly wonders in it, “He (God) counts the number of the stars; He gives names to all of them” (Psa.147:4, NASB). God creates everything and is omniscient (all-knowing/all-wise), besides being omnipotent (all-powerful), and omnipresent (everywhere at once). The same manner God counts and names the innumerable stars of the heavens, He knows every human being He gave life and gifts (purpose) upon this earth and calls each by name commensurate with each of our unique gifts. (1 Cor.7:17)

Jesus said this about the value of every human in God’s sight, and how much He cares for us, “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows” (Matt.10:29-31).

Jesus’ name means Savior for He is the promised Messiah who saves humanity from the sin-condition. (Matt.1:21) It is the sin-condition under which humanity is held slaves that has hijacked our realities as humans created in God’s image of Love. Love and sin are polar opposites, and humans must choose which side to follow. Speaking about Jesus with those he saved, the Bible says, “The Shepherd (Jesus) walks right up to the gate. The Gatekeeper (God) opens the gate to Him and the sheep recognize His voice. He calls His own sheep by name and leads them out” (John 10:3, italics my emphasis, MSG; also Isa.43:1.). God names and identifies His human children by the gift He confers upon each person. (1 Tim.4:14-16)

Paul says that because God has conferred gifts upon every living human, we are to keep our gift dusted and polished and He desires we immerse ourselves in them by using them in God’s Love. (Rom.11:9; 1 Tim.4:14-16, MSG; 1 Cor.13:1-8). Gifts contribute to the zest of human personality and vitality for which God gave a weighty and influential metaphor for us to contemplate – Gold! Jesus spoke of the parable of the gold in reference to the gifts God confers upon us. You can read this in Jesus’ parable in Matthew 25:14-30. You may visit my Blog Post entitled, “Invest In Gold” at:- http://bulamanriver.net/3145 to view my explanatory perspective on this topic. To neglect and betray your life’s purpose per your gift, or to live diametrically opposite to your divine destiny in your Creator’s likeness. (Gen.1:26-27)

Gold – Metaphor for Human Gifts Divinely Conferred at Birth In Every Human

But here is the contextual relevance between the two, so I ask, what has human gifts to do with the social media and the effects social media has upon humans? Much in every way because God will never forsake humanity and will always have a hand in human destiny. (Job.12:10; Pro.16:9)

John was given a vision to record God’s glorious plan for humanity’s future upon earth, “Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the old heaven and the old earth had disappeared. And the sea was also gone. And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven like a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. I heard a loud shout from the throne, saying, “Look, God’s home is now among His people! He will live with them, and they will be His people. God Himself will be with them. He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever. And the One sitting on the throne said, “Look, I am making everything new!” It is finished! I am the Alpha and the Omega—the Beginning and the End” (Rev.21:1-6).

So God Himself will come and dwell among humanity who will have been restituted in His Love likeness. (Gen.1:26-27) His unfailing Love has never left mankind, He has never abandoned humanity, although we cannot say the same of us. (Rom.1:25, 28-32) It will be a future so glorious in its beauty and majesty beyond the human mind to comprehend. Truly, He will do as He promised, “Look, I am making everything new!” – even a new heavens and new earth!

Be that as it may, as we look forward to an unbelievably breathtaking future in God’s presence, there was a time in human history when humanity evolved into and became a grouping of self-destructive populace and people that has brought humanity to the brink of complete annihilation, and mercifully, God had to step in and stop the human madness. (Rom.1:28-32; Tit.1:15-16; 3:3) This epoch in human history had descended into a destructive spiral into evil, which the Bible records, “every intent of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil continually” (Gen.6:5). Then the Bible quotes God as saying, “The LORD was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart” (Gen.6:6).

So, God chose to reset His plans for humanity instead of allowing humanity to destroy itself, “The LORD said, “I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land, from man to animals to creeping things and to birds of the sky; for I am sorry that I have made them.” But Noah found favor in the eyes of the LORD (Gen.6:7-8). Most of us are familiar with the story of Noah.

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Noah’s Ark: “Every intent of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil continually” (Wiki Commons)

Through Noah and his children, God chose to make a fresh beginning for humanity, lest they destroy themselves from the face of the earth. Humanity today are principally descendants from Noah. The people who drowned in the flood were mostly descendants of Adam. (Gen.6:9-22) Humanity’s lineage from Noah find’s its beginning with Seth, Adam’s Son. (Luk.3:38: 1 Chron.1:1-4)

Why is the story from the epochs from Adam to Noah so important for humanity today? The Adamic epoch leading up to the flood of Noah carried vital lessons for humanity because it showed primarily how mankind as a whole can and had lost its way upon earth. (Gen.6:5) Most of all, it shows how God cares about humanity’s welfare whom He created in His image with divine destiny, and will never forsake but always guide mankind to their ultimate divine destiny which we can read about in Revelation 21 and 22.  

Jesus foretold that the calamitous experience humanity underwent in the Adamic epoch of Noah’s flood, will be something humanity will once more undergo and experience – but not necessarily by a flood. (Gen.9:11) Listen to Jesus’ prophecy, “The time of the Son of Man (New Testament/current day) will be just like the time of Noah (Old Testament/Noah’s time)—everyone carrying on as usual, having a good time right up to the day Noah boarded the ship. They suspected nothing until the flood hit and swept everything away” (Luk.17:26-27, MSG, italics mine).

We ask once again, what will happen that’s… “just like the time of Noah?” The answer from Genesis tell us, “…every intent of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil continually” (Gen.6:5). But here, we ask what is the vital truth each of us must face up to and answer as it relates to “the evil intent and thoughts of the human heart.” (Gen.6:5).

If and when humanity corrects his evil heart then we can avert another divine judgment from God. It may not be a deluge as in Noah’s time, it could well be something completely different. Principally, death come to people as a result of following a way of life that is destructive. That corrupt way is the way of rebellion and sin against God the Creator.

What is “evil?” Apparently, we see from Noah that ‘evil’ was the trigger for God’s wrath and punishment. (Gen.6:5-8) God said, “My Spirit will not contend with humans forever, for they are mortal” (Gen.6:3). What does that mean? It means God’s Spirit will not put up with humans forever if they decide to reject Him and rely upon their corrupt human minds entirely. God has always made His Spirit of Love available to humans. (Rom.5:5) What happens when humans refuse and deny God’s counsel? The Bible answers, “There is a path before each person that seems right, but it ends in death” (Prov.14:12, NLT). For the people of Noah’s day, death came by way of a worldwide deluge.

So, the answer to “evil” has to do with what is right and wrong, but most importantly by our conclusion as to ‘who’ is the final arbiter of good and evil in human life and human affairs. It calls for a moral imperative that humans must be very transparent and clear-cut about. How do we choose right from evil, because to choose wrongly can mean sure death. Our first parents were warned about this. (Gen.2:17) Adam and Eve chose to rebel against God’s simple instruction for them at the behest of the devil’s persuasion. (Gen.3:1-6, 11) So, everything good and right proceeds from God and His Love. Everything evil and corrupt stems from God’s adversary, the devil, Satan.

The Bible says this about God as to the custom and norm by which He exists in His nature and character, “God is Love” (1 John 4:8, 16). So, everything good and right springs out of God’s Love-nature. Because of this, God is inerrable and perfect. (Psa.18:30; Deut.32:4; Psa.19:7) So, the answer to “evil’ is God’s Love. We can refuse God’s Loving counsel and choose to go our own human self-centered way, and make up our own nefarious standards of right and good.

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Disinformation and Conspiracy Theories Abound on The Web (unsplash)

But that does not make it good nor right, no matter how much we may try to rationalize it to be so. The Bible says this about the human heart that is left to its own selfish devices, “The human heart is the most deceitful of all things, and desperately wicked. Who really knows how bad it is?” (Jer.17:9; also Mar.7:21). What is this passage saying? It says that because of Adam’s fall and thereby entrapped in Satan’s sin-condition, humanity has inherited his fallen ‘Adamic humanity.’

But more importantly, it also says there’s an inherent spiritual blindness humans are unmindful about, that is, what we may consider ‘good” may well be ‘bad’ and therefore wrong for us. (Prov.12:15; 16:2) This ‘good’ is what the Bible calls self-righteousness. Eventually, it comes down to the underlying nature and motive of the heart – on one hand is to live in God’s divine Love-condition, and on the other hand is to exist in the devil’s sin-condition. (Rom.5:17)

The human heart is not born ‘desperately wicked.’ The heart is born neutral and impartial, like a blank slate, so to speak. However, because humans are born into the sin-conditioned rebellious world of Satan resulting from Adam’s fall in Eden, the devious and crafty enemy has been busy at work reshaping humans into his own evil rebellious likeness through the fallen Adamic human heart we read in Jeremiah above. (Gen.3:1-6; Jer.17:9)

Unless all our motivations and actions are weighed in the scale of God’s Love and grace, they will be found inadequate, deficient, and wanting. John said this about God’s Love in human life, “God is Love, and whoever abides in Love abides in God, and God abides in him” (1 John 4:16). And the Scriptures reveal that we are empowered in His Love-nature by His Spirit He has given us. (Rom.5:5)

Again, let me pose our contextual question, what has all we have covered above to do with human gifts, the social media and its effect upon humanity? The connection is that all human gifts which define each of our personhood finds its origin and reality in God’s Love. Your gift as well as mine are gifts of God, and all of humanity’s gifts form the tapestry of God’s Love which cover this earth – that is, provided we have become Love ourselves in the likeness of God Himself. (1 John 4:12-13, 16) The danger of social media is its innate propensity and potential to reshape us away from God’s Love, and make us what God has not designed for each of us. Remember, God knows each of us by name, and that name reflects His gift in our lives – LOVE!

The menace of social media is its deliberate, unwarranted, and unsolicited intrusive attempts to keep people trapped in an altered reality of themselves where they are blinded to their fundamental and related gifts that are founded upon God’s Love. Unfortunately, people in their millions are ignorant, nor have no inkling of, the beauty and truth of their gift and their true personhood in God’s Love. Humans have existed and are being taken deeper into the devil’s deception and delusion in their already warped reality from the truth of God’s Love and Love-gift.

God admonishes us, “Don’t become partners with those who reject God. How can you make a partnership out of right and wrong? That’s not partnership; that’s war. Is light best friends with dark? Does Christ go strolling with the Devil? How can a believer be a partner with an unbeliever? And what union can there be between God’s temple and idols? For we are the temple of the living God. As God said: “I will live in them and walk among them. I will be their God, and they will be my people” (2 Cor.6:14-16, MSG, NLT).   

We saw how social media platforms aim and work at affecting real-world behavior and emotions of end-users. The net effect is we become clueless pawns and unwary prey of these media platforms whose algorithm work at conflating social value (likes, thumbs-up, conspiracies, disinformation, slogans, etc) with truth, especially with the truth of our personal reality in the Creator’s Love-reality.

Gradually but deceptively, we lose control of who we are until we exchange our self-image for a person that is not true to our personhood reality in the divine Love, but a false one that’s been unsuspectingly manipulated by third-party purveyors of misinformation on various media platforms. And gradually and insidiously social media is running our lives and supplanting our reality for a false ones upon an unwitting population.

God, A Tri-Personal Being in The Father, Son, And Holy Spirit (Wiki Commons)

  

It is actually the battle for our human minds. Remember what Jesus taught about the human heart and mind that is not aligned with God’s Love and counsel, “It’s what comes out of a person’s heart that pollutes: obscenities, lusts, thefts, murders, adulteries, greed, depravity, deceptive dealings, carousing, mean looks, slander, arrogance, foolishness—all these are vomit from the heart. There is the source of your pollution” (Mar.7:20-23, MSG; Matt.15:18-19). The foundation of these evil works and more is the spirit of rebellion which humanity inherited way back at Adam’s fall in Eden. (Gen.3:1-6)

So, now let us discuss how the divine Love can be made to take center stage in human life through the “Triune Life”*. What is the “Triune Life?” It informs us how God, in His Tri-Personal Being as the Father, Son (Jesus), and Spirit, are all participating divine Entities in the affairs of humanity, and bringing us to our final destiny in His eternal Kingdom. Each Triune Person’s activity within the trinitarian Love mechanism is referred to as an Ascent. There are 3 Ascents depicting the Love of the Father, Son (Jesus) and Spirit. Then the 4th Ascent depict the manifestation of their Tri-Personal activity in humanity. Let’s begin…

Ascent 1: Holy Spirit – Defeating Rebellion. The 1st Ascent reveals for us the role of the Holy Spirit in human life. What does ‘defeating rebellion’ mean? The work of the Spirit is to defeat rebellion in the heart of humanity. Love cannot take root in the human mind and heart unless and until rebellion is negated and defeated. Besides defeating rebellion the Spirit introduces and plants seeds of Love in the human heart. We read Paul say this to us, “God generously pours His Love into our lives through the Holy Spirit” (Rom.5:5; also, 1 John 4:13). However, here is the proviso – the Holy Spirit cannot come and enter human life as long as the sin-condition through rebellion has a firm footing in our lives. So, this 1st Ascent dovetails into and goes hand-in-hand with the 2nd Ascent…

The Dove, Symbol of The Holy Spirit And God’s Love (Rom.5:5)

Ascent 2: Jesus Christ – Light. The 2nd Ascent divulges to us the role of Jesus as our divine/human Savior who is responsible for making the Holy Spirit available to mankind by removing rebellion and the sin-condition which has kept us spiritually trapped since Adam’s fallen ‘Adamic humanity.’ Recall, after Adam and Eve sinned by eating the forbidden fruit, God placed and angel to guard the path to the Tree of Life, which symbolized the Holy Spirit. (Gen.3:23-24)

Jesus gave us access to the Spirit saying, “Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper (Spirit) will not come to you. But if I go, I will send Him to you” (John 16:7, italic mine). On the day of Pentecost the Spirit was poured upon humanity, beginning with the apostles and believers. (Luk.24:49; Act.1:4-5; Act.2:1-4) Hence, He reveals His unique role in each of our realities, “I am the way and the truth and the life” (John 14:6).

What does light in reference to Jesus mean? Light stands for gifts, it means life, which each is conferred by divine will and eternally embedded in Jesus. Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life” (John 8:12). The “light of life” to a person is his/her gift which is the human God-given purpose which keeps us connected to each of our divine destiny. Every gift has its origin upon the foundation of Christ’s Love.  

Paul informs us as to how our gifts are grounded in Christ, “Therefore it says, “When He ascended on high (to heaven as High Priest), He led captive a host of captives, and He gave gifts to men” (Eph.4:8, NAS, italics mine) Yes, humans were captives and slave of the enemy Satan, until Jesus freed us by defeating him in the temptation and at His cross. As a result, from His victory over the enemy humans are now prisoners of God’s Love, and He distributed gifts to all.

Paul said all of God’s mysteries are hid in Christ, His Son, “In Him lie hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Col.2:3). Yes, in Christ all the apportioned and assigned gifts in all of humanity comes together in one marvelous tapestry of God’s Love. (1 John 4:16)

Each of our gifts will be the vehicle by which we are kept connected to the divine will, just as Joseph’s dream did throughout his life until he became second in command in all Egypt, and saved his family and the known world at the time from a devastating famine. (Gen.50:18-21) Hence, Paul states emphatically, “And you have been made complete in Christ, who is the head over every ruler and authority” (Col.2:10, BSB) “Ruler and authority” means each of us is given rulership and authority through the gifts given to each person. You rule through your gift; you are given authority the same way. But rulership and authority must be established and implemented in God’s Love.(1 Cor.13)

Jesus, Savior and Mediator for Humanity

Ascent 3: God the Father – Death & Rebirth. The 3rd Ascent depict the Father’s Loving role of manifesting new life in Christ through the process of death and rebirth. (1 Cor.15:22; 35-36) Please keep in mind, this plan of salvation for all humanity is led by the Father. He surrendered His Son to be our Savior, and gave His Spirit as a Friend and gift to be a Helper in our life’s journey upon earth. (John 3:16; 1 John 2:2; Luk.11:13; John 14:16)

Every human is born into the fallen ‘Adamic humanity’ and enslaved to the enemy of mankind. God’s plan since Adam’s fall in Eden at the hands of Satan, was to give mankind a new humanity that is fashioned after Jesus Christ, the second Adam. (Rom.8:29; 1 Cor.15:45) Jesus was given the prophetic name, “Immanuel.” (Isa.7:14) The name means Jesus is both divine and human, or, as the Scripture translates His identity, “God with us.” (Matt.1:22-23)

Therefore, I have called Jesus humanity, the ‘Immanuel humanity’ – the ‘God with us’ humanity – and is the Father’s gift to mankind who spiritually and indisputably replaces the fallen ‘Adamic humanity.’ It speaks of a human whose life is inducted into and led by God’s Spirit (Ascent 1). The role of the Spirit is to manifest Christ in the life of the believer. (John 16:13-15) It is essentially the new birth in humanity manifested in the life of the glorified Christ in the Spirit’s power. (Eph.3:16-21; John 3:3-7)

How does the Father make this rebirth a reality in humans? God must remove the fallen ‘Adamic humanity’ of Satan, and plant the new risen ‘Immanuel humanity’ of Jesus in mankind. It began when Jesus inaugurated the gift and birth of the Spirit in humanity that gave birth to the new life that’s empowered the divine life and Love. Jesus introduced the Spirit to humanity when He was baptized by John in the Jordan. (Matt.3:13)

Recall what happened, the Gospel of Mark records, “At that time Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. Just as Jesus was coming up out of the water, He saw heaven being torn open and the Spirit descending on Him like a dove. And a voice came from heaven: “You are My Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased” (Mar.1:9-11). After Jesus inaugurated the gift of the God’s Spirit in humanity, the Spirit was poured directly upon humanity on the day of Pentecost. (Act.2:1-4; Joel2:28)

The Father Recreates Humanity In The New Birth

Jesus has made possible God’s gift of His Holy Spirit for and in humanity following His repentance on behalf of humanity’s sin in the Jordan where and when the Spirit was first given to Jesus. (John 16:7, ESV; Matt. 3:16-17). Then after His baptism, He was led into the Judean wilderness by and in the Spirit’s power to face Satan and defeat and overcome his iniquitous temptations. Again, He obediently and comprehensively defeated the devil on behalf of humanity. (Mat.4:1-11)

Ultimately, Jesus was crucified as atonement for human sin and rebellion to reconcile humanity to God. (John 3:16) Humans cannot defeat the devil were it not for God imputing His Son’s victorious life, death, resurrection, and ascension, upon us. Every day we vicariously relive Jesus’ own victory over Satan as a gift from the Father. Paul told the Corinthians about their ultimate hope in this way, “It is because of Him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God–that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption” (1 Cor.1 :30). The Father imputes Christ’s upon us which saves us ultimately. (Rom.8:1; 2 Cor.5:21) Yes, in life we are always marching with Jesus in His victory and triumphant procession. (2 Cor.2:14)

Paul tells the Romans this, “For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ! Consequently, just as one trespass resulted in condemnation for all people, so also one righteous act resulted in justification and life for all people” (Rom.5:17-18). Yes, God the Father has imputed the victorious life of His Son, Jesus, upon humanity to bring us to salvation and to Himself as His eternal children. (2 Cor.5:21; 1 Pet.2:24-25)

In like fashion, human Love and obedience toward God is not physically nor humanly possible without Jesus pioneering and having paved the way so that God the Father can impute Jesus’ Love and obedience of God upon mankind. Note Paul’s words in this regard, “But now God has shown us a way to be made right with Him without keeping the requirements of the law, as was promised in the writings of Moses and the prophets long ago. We are made right with God by placing our faith in Jesus Christ. And this is true for everyone who believes, no matter who we are. For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard. Yet God, in His grace, freely makes us right in His sight. He did this through Christ Jesus when He freed us from the penalty for our sins. For God presented Jesus as the sacrifice for sin” (Rom.3:21-25, NLT).

That’s to say, “everyone has and will sin” (V.23) whether through weakness or inadvertently (actively or passively), however, Christ mediates for humanity’s right standing before the Father in His High Priestly role in heaven. (Heb.4:14-16; Rom.3:22; 8:1-4)

Thereby, Paul further lays claim on the importance of faith, saying, “If you’re a hard worker and do a good job, you deserve your pay; we don’t call your wages a gift. But if you see that the job is too big for you, that it’s something only God can do, and you trust Him to do it—you could never do it for yourself no matter how hard and long you worked—well, that trusting-Him-to-do-it is what gets you set right with God, by God. Sheer gift” (Rom.4:4-5, MSG).

Call to mind as to when the Spirit was first inaugurated in human life? It happened at Jesus’ baptism in the Jordan. As Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist, the Holy Spirit descended from the Father upon Jesus, a depiction of the reality of our own baptism and how the Father extends the gift of the Spirit who spiritually transports humanity into Jesus’ holy presence as High Priest in heaven before the Father where mankind is embraced as God’s holy children. Also, we are reminded of what the Father did and said to Jesus at His baptism in the Jordan which we saw earlier (Mar.1:9-11).

When the Father sent His Spirit upon Jesus, He repeats the words He would forever say to all humanity who follow Jesus by undergoing His baptism, “You are My Son, (‘children’ for all humanity) whom I love; with You I am well pleased” (Mark.1:11; Luk.3:22). As children of God, we are always in God’s holy presence through His Son’s constant mediation, and made holy by the power of God’s Holy Spirit. This is the life we are all called to live – in holy union with the Triune God in the Father’s holy presence. (1 Cor.1:30-31)

4 Ascent 4: Humanity – Human Calling/Gift and Destiny. The 4th Ascent informs us of the manifestation of the work of the Tri-Personal God in humanity we saw in the preceding 3 Ascents above. In other words, the 4th Ascent is the manifestation resulting from the three activities (Ascents) of the Triune God a person encounters above. Arising from the Father’s presence (4th Ascent), humans receive the new birth distinctively in the devolution and distribution of gifts through Jesus. (Eph.4:8) The Father’s divine Love is the energy from which gifts are given birth through the ‘Immanuel human,’ Jesus, who now lives and walks in us. (Isa.7:14; Gal.2:20).  

Human Rebirth Into The Image Of Jesus In The Spirit’s Power

Paul tell us, “For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable,” to mean God has blessed humanity with His own image and likeness in the gifts he has conferred upon us from birth. (Rom.11:19). Paul reminds us, “For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands” (2 Tim.1:6; 4:14). Jesus said, “You are blessed when you are content with just who you are – no more, no less. That’s the moment you find yourselves proud owners of everything that can’t be bought” (Matt. 5:5 MSG).

We all have different life-gifts which we must focus upon and cultivate. That’s our gift given us out of the wealth of the Master which we see in Jesus’ parable of the gold (gifts) (Matt.25:14-30). Always believe in your uniqueness and difference in your personhood, and realize you’re that way for a purpose. The life-gift we are born with identifies our place in the plan of God and how each of us play a role in it.

The gift need not be ecclesiastical or religious in nature. People seem to have this perception that when God is involved in a person, his calling ought to be religious in nature. It’s a myth that stems from the enemy who wants to vilify the good in people’s varied talents and gifts. We have been given the freedom to be whoever we want, that obviously means in the area of our strengths, which most likely lean towards our gifts and talents.

Joseph, the son of Jacob and Rachel, was conferred a gift that was not of a religious nature. (Gen.50:18-21) He was an administrator and manager of people in the field of agriculture. (Gen.41:44-49) Joseph’s gift saved the people of Egypt and many nations from a devastating worldwide famine. A person can be a plumber, or engineer, a doctor or gardener, an architect or builder, a marine biologist or fisherman, a basketball player or botanist, or whatever the gift. Gifts evolve as the Spirit supplies the faith.

Peter was a fisherman. Then Jesus called him and said from this day forget the fish, let’s do something different with your skills – let’s fish humans. A person may be a basketball player with a short-term career. Then he/she moves onto something else in life. This is the way a person’s “life-gift” works in the Spirit’s influence and guidance.

The crux in the matter of gifting is how they are utilized and lived out in daily life and interaction in relationship with God and our fellow humans. Hence, Paul said this after giving his monolog about God Love fruits, he said, “But desire earnestly the greater gifts, and yet shew I unto you a way of more surpassing excellence,” meaning Love. (1 Cor.12:31). The greatest gift of all is God’s Love which can be made to indwell humans by the power of God’s Spirit. (Rom.5:5; 1 John 4:13) That’s to say, we be earnest in ensuring that all our gifts and talents are affecting all our actions by being carried on the backs of God’s Love fruits we read in the book of Corinthians. (1 Cor.13:1-13 – read the Fruits of the Spirit/Love expounded in detail, and the opposing fruits, at: http://bulamanriver.net/9199)

God counsels us to guard our minds against the insidious evil proclivity that’s foisted upon us by the enemy by way of the fallen human heart. (Prov.4:23) Paul put it across like this, “Summing it all up, friends, I’d say you’ll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse. Put into practice what you learned from me, what you heard and saw and realized. Do that, and God, who makes everything work together, will work you into his most excellent harmonies” (Phi.4:8-9; 2:15).

Yes, these virtues and more are the fruits of the Spirit’s Love we must seek to feed and manifest in our true person through God’s divinely conferred gifts. (You may read more about how to live by the fruits of God’s Spirit Love-fruits and power, at: http://bulamanriver.net/9199; and at: http://bulamanriver.net/16467). 

The Psalmist affirms this beautiful prose about each of our personal truth in the gifts God has fittingly conferred upon us so we are unique and one-of-a-kind, “Oh yes, you shaped me first inside, then out; you formed me in my mother’s womb. I thank you, High God—you’re breathtaking! Body and soul, I am marvelously made! I worship in adoration—what a creation! You know me inside and out, you know every bone in my body; You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit, how I was sculpted from nothing into something. Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth; all the stages of my life were spread out before you, the days of my life all prepared before I’d even lived one day” (Psa.139:13-16, MSG).

Truly, every human is fearfully, wonderfully, and magnificently created with gifts to match. Our response ought to be honorable and investigate our lives, and ask God to help us find out everything about us in each of our gifts. It behooves us to pray for insight so we can get a clear picture of who we are and what we are about. If we have done wrong then pray for guidance and correction.   

So, let us focus on the person we are given through the Love of God. Do not allow a third party to siphon nor introduce any persona that conflict with the truth of our personhood in Christ. As humans we can be naïvely unaware of the potential to be hijacked by a third party to our detriment and demise – which we must guard against, whether the third party is just a person/s, or the more insidious function of social media, or some cause, propaganda, or conspiracy, etc. We live in a world of global commerce in the rapid movement of goods and services, transfer of capital worldwide, social media, natural upheaval through climate change, mass migration as never before, and the ever-increasing complexity of life itself. We must learn to live together in harmony, in cooperation with one another by recognizing the dignity of others in their diversity as divinely ordained, or we will perish together.

Let us choose our paths wisely by heeding the words of warning of Jesus about trying to lead people away from their divinely ordained truth, “Jesus said to His disciples: “Things that cause people to stumble are bound to come, but woe to anyone through whom they come. It would be better for them to be thrown into the sea with a millstone tied around their neck than to cause one of these little ones (spiritual children) to stumble. So, watch yourselves” (Luk.17:1-3, italics mine).

Petition: Friends, as I have closed my post in the past, I customarily give our readers the opportunity to give their lives to our Maker. I thank you for investing your precious time with me in the sharing of the good news of Jesus who has enabled us to live the Triune Life* through the 3 Ascents. Jesus is alive today as our High Priest in heaven seated at His Father’s side, and ceaselessly mediating for us. I hope that in your heart of heart you will receive Him as your personal Savior, receive God’s Spirit, and be part of living this glorious humanity made children of God forever. You can privately and quietly pray the prayer below in your heart. I am asking you to pray this prayer as a human being Christ died for, regardless of your background. All are inducted into the one mankind Jesus saved, not into any religious sect or denomination – into the glorious humanity that Christ is preparing as the holy temple for God’s dwelling:

Prayer: “Almighty God, Father of all humanity, forgive me of all my sins for I receive Your Son, Jesus, as my personal Savior. In Your incalculable grace, thank you for recuing me and my loved ones, and all humanity, from the enemy’s fearful and destructive waters, and bringing us home into the life-giving waters of your Ocean of Love. Grant Your promised celestial life in Your Son through Your Holy Spirit, and open my eyes to the wondrous gifts you have conferred upon us all so we may serve one another in your Love. May Your Love guide and protect me and my Loved ones always, and bring us all into Your beloved and divine Kingdom. I praise and thank You, Amen.”

Prayer is A Solemn One-On-One Spiritual Love Dialogue Between a Person and God the Father (Wiki Commons)

Welcome to the celestial life of Love in God’s holy, eternal Family. (1 Tim.6:19) Then keep in touch with God’s Word for you by reading and studying your Bible, and visiting this blog and website and look at various subjects that may be relevant for your situation – go to: http://bulamanriver.net. You can email me with your questions at the address shown below.

Blessing: Until we meet again in my next post, I wish you and your family a truly transformative New Year. May the blessings of the God who ceaselessly expresses Himself in His dependable Triune Love, be with you always. May the Spirit enliven your spirit and make all things concerning you possible as you live the “Triune Life” in 2021  Be strong in the Lord’s joy.

Farewell for now!

Kiang,  (Your Servant in Christ)                                                                                                                        

*Imputation communicates the miraculous truth about how humanity is made right with God (or justified) on the basis of the obedience of Christ. By Jesus’s active obedience he meets the demands of perfect righteousness God has always required of humanity. By Jesus’s passive obedience, he pays the penalty due to humanity on account of sin. Additionally, beyond the imputation of Christ’s full obedience to believers, imputation may also refer to the counting of believers’ sins to Christ as the sin-bearing substitute.” (https://faculty.wts.edu/posts/what-is-imputation/)

*Triune Life: “Triune Life” speaks of the process of theosis or deification of humanity. What is theosis or deification? “It refers to apotheosis, meaning “making divine.” Theosis or deification is a transformative process whose aim is likeness to or union with God (as taught by the Eastern Orthodox Church and Eastern Catholic Church).” (Wikipedia.org) The belief in the process of ‘deification’ is understood in accordance with Jesus’ teaching, when He said, “Is it not written in your Law, ‘I have said you are “gods” ’? If He called them ‘gods,’ to whom the Word of God came—and Scripture cannot be set aside (cannot be broken)” (John 10:34-35; Psa.82:6). (You can read about the Triune Life at: http://bulamanriver.net/9199, and other posts)

The Resurrection to Immortality and Deification of Humanity Created In God’s Image (Wiki Commons)

I have written about this subject of ‘deification’ in my blogs under the theme ‘substitution’ and ‘attribution’ (see, http://bulamanriver.net/564), where I showed how Jesus came as God incarnate (Immanuel) to assume our sinful humanity in order to save mankind from sin and death for the express purpose of human deification. (Matt.1:23; Rom.3:10-12, 18, 23; John 3:16; 1 Cor.15:50-55; Rom.8:29) Further, we read the following, “As a process of transformation, theosis is brought about by the effects of catharsis (purification of mind and body) and theoria (‘illumination’ with the ‘vision’ of God). According to Eastern Christian teaching, theosis is very much the purpose of human life. It is considered achievable only through a synergy (or cooperation) between human activity and God’s uncreated energies.” (Wikipedia.org)

So, the “Triune Life” reveals the intersection of human life and activity and the uncreated divine energy flowing from the Tri-Personal Being of God of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. It is a way of life which explains that process of theosis whereby humans are transformed in body, mind, and spirit by the Love of God. God’s uncreated energy is His Love. So, the foundational tenet of the “Triune Life” is based upon the Love of God, for “God is Love” (1 John 4:8, 16). Thereby, it can also be called aptly, the “Triune Love.”

Rublev’s Icon of the Trinity (Wiki Commons)

I had coined the term “Triune Love” and “Triune Life,” to refer to a person who lives the three-dimensional life within the Tri-Personal Godhead of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. (Matt.28:19) This is opposed to the one-dimensional human way of life influenced by the devil. We see God’s Tri-Personal Love move in an inward, outward, and upward trajectory, in this process of theosis which I have called the ‘three ascents.’ The three ascents are three steps which dovetails into one another showing how all three Persons of the Godhead are in the relationship of Love with humanity – where God reveals the fullness of Himself to humanity, both individually and collectively. (2 Cor.13:14; 1 Pet.1:1-2) That’s to say, the act of one is the act of all three, and the act of three is the act of one, making them unified in Love. (Mar.12:29; Deut.6:4)

Every aspect of human living follows this three-step format revealing the three-dimensional aspect of how the Tri-Personal Being of God in the Father, Son, and Spirit, directly and collectively involved in the life of human believers, individually and collectively to bring humanity to salvation. These three steps move in an ascending order, so I will call them ‘ascents.’ Each ‘ascent’ dovetails into the next and finally reveals the ‘manifestation’ of the topic, which we will call the fourth step, in this case, Love!

Hence, all my articles are framed within this three-step format, or ascents. The subject of the article dovetails into each ascent and spontaneously lead to the manifestation of the divine Love and reveals how humanity is enlightened by God, and cleansed in mind, body, and spirit. The ascents reveal three doors one must enter to attain the manifestation of God’s Love relationship with humanity. The ascents are not to be misconstrued as some ‘secret knowledge’ or mystical activity. Rather, each ascent represents the relationship of Love a human enjoys with the Triune God in the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, throughout a person’s life. In fact, the ascents are actually three Love relationships the believer encounters with the Tri-Personal God. This three-way relationship is what I have called by the term, “Triune Life” or “Triune Love.” These ascents represent the movement of God’s Love in an inward, outward, and upward, trajectory to bring God’s enlightenment in a person. The fourth step reveals how the article is made to manifest in the life of the person, both individually and then collectively in humanity.

Man’s union with the Triune God, or “Triune Living/Loving,” is made possible by Jesus, who Himself, is one in substance and reality with the Triune Godhead. (John 1:1-2) He took our humanity into the very Being of the Triune Godhead by cleansing it of all sin and rebellion. To live the “Triune Love (Life)” is the miraculous expression of the Spirit (Love) in humans. (Rom.5:5) The miraculous life is the promise of the New Covenant, “I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you shall keep My ordinances, and do them” (Ezek.36:27).

The Bible states, “He (God) does great things that we cannot understand and miracles that we cannot count” (Job 5:9; 37:5). If God acts in ways that cannot be fathomed and is beyond human comprehension, then the miraculous life where humans are privileged recipients, cannot be deciphered by the human mind to its grandest manifestation. But we understand its meaning through divine revelation in that God reveals Himself as Love, and His miraculous activities are enveloped in His Love. (Jer.29:11)

The three-dimensional Triune Life/Love is opposed to living the one-dimensional solitary life of the fallen humanity inherited from Satan through Adam’s rebellion. For additional information about the Triune Life: http://bulamanriver.net/?p=8036. Also at: http://bulamanriver.net/9092.                                                  

**Bulamanriver: To read the different facets of the life of the Bulamanriver, you may obtain a copy of my book, “Bula” Man-River, from Amazon.com; xulonpress.com, barnesandnoble.com, and other online book stores. All proceeds will go towards furthering the work of Gospel of Jesus Christ around the world.

BulaManRiver Book Cover

Mission Statement: Read the Triune Love Mission, Vision, and Value statements at: http://bulamanriver.net/8664

All scriptures are taken from the NIV Version 2011, unless stated otherwise.

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THE CELESTIAL LIFE II, BY KIANG P LEE

Greetings Friends! In February 2020 I wrote a post about the ‘celestial life’ in which I said that the ‘celestial life’ is anchored upon this passage of scripture from the Bible, “Just as Jesus is, so also are we in this world” (1 John 4:17, KJV). To put it more simply, it means, we live in God and God lives in us. John wrote this, “God is love. Whoever lives in Love lives in God, and God in them” (1 John 4:16). Jesus is the Intermediary who makes the ‘celestial life’ possible. (John 3:16-17) Jesus is the second Person of the Trinitarian Godhead and is God. The Holy Spirit is the third Person in the Godhead, as is the Father who is the first Person. (Matt.28:18-20; Act.7:55) Humanity is God’s offspring by creation. (Gen.1:26-27). John tells us this, “See what great Love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God!” (1 John 3:1). Let us continue, this post is the sequel to my first post on the topic of the ‘celestial life.’

The Celestial Heavens- Metaphor for The Divine ‘Celestial Life’ in Human Form on Earth We are Called and Predestined To Live. The ‘Celestial life’ is a sense of awareness of harmony with creation around us with its Creator. (Pic: Star Cluster Westerlund 2 in The Milky Way Galaxy. Wiki Commons)

By stating, “Just as Jesus is” it conjures and invites the question, who is Jesus? (1 John 4:17) The Bible reveals Jesus as the “I Am.” (Exo.3:14). What does that identity mean – “I AM?” Jesus first revealed this truth about Himself during the time of Israelite slavery in Egypt. (Deut.24:18) God was about to send Moses to free the Israelites from Egyptian slavery. (Deut.5:15) But Moses was concerned that the Israelites may not find him credible much less believable since he was a wanted man in Egypt – having killed an Egyptian. (Exo.2:11-15)

We pick up Moses’ exchange with God in the book of Exodus, and Moses asked God, “Indeed, when I come to the children of Israel and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they say to me, ‘What is His name?’ what shall I say to them?” And God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” And He said, “Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’ “Moreover, God said to Moses, “Thus you shall say to the children of Israel: ‘The LORD God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you. This is My name forever, and this is My memorial to all generations.’ Go and gather the elders of Israel together, and say to them, ‘The LORD God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob, appeared to me, saying, “I have surely visited you and seen what is done to you in Egypt; and I have said I will bring you up out of the affliction of Egypt” (Exo.3:13-17, NKJV).

The name Yahweh is a transliteration of the proper name YHWH (without vowels) that is sometimes rendered “Jehovah;” in this translation it is usually rendered “the LORD” (note the use of small capitals in the passage). Jesus Christ was the second Person of the triune God that Moses and Israel was dealing with in the Old Testament and under the first (old) covenant.

“I AM WHO I AM,” what does that mean and how do we relate with God through this identity of Himself to Israel and all humanity, His children? The words “I AM WHO I AM,” is translated from the original text, אהיה אשר אהיה, (pronounced “Ehyeh asher Ehyeh”), which can mean a few different things: I am that I am. I am that which exists…. I will exist because I will exist… I will be what I will be.

Much later in the New Testament, Jesus said this to the listeners of His day, “Very truly I tell you, before Abraham was born, I AM!” (John 8:58). This shows Jesus’ identity as the second Person of the Triune Godhead with whom Moses spoke. Therefore, the “I AM” in the Old Testament is identical with “Just as Jesus is” we read earlier in the New Testament. (1 John 4:17, KJV). Consequently, “I AM” is who “Jesus IS.” The Bible reveals other identities and names for Jesus like Immanuel, Messiah, King of kings, and others. But we will deal with His identity as the “I AM” in this blog as it relates to the subject of the ‘celestial life.’

silhouette of trees and mountain under blue sky at nighttime
“I look up at Your macro-skies, dark and enormous,
    Your handmade sky-jewelry,
Moon and stars mounted in their settings.
    Then I look at my micro-self and wonder,
Why do You bother with us?
    Why take a second look our way?
 Yet we’ve so narrowly missed being gods,
    bright with Eden’s dawn light.
You put us in charge of Your handcrafted world,
    repeated to us Your Genesis-charge” (Psa.8:3-8, MSG). (Unsplash)

Let’s unravel the relationship with the identity of Jesus as “I AM” with humanity. Let us decode what “I AM” means? Paul’s words explains this further, as it concerns Jesus and our relationship with Him, “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith of the Son of God, who Loved me and gave Himself for me” (Gal.2:20, KJV). By saying we have “been crucified with Christ,” it basically means the fallen, rebellious self inherited from the first Adam no longer lives but was crucified and died on Jesus’ cross. In saying, “Christ now lives in me,” the passage reveals that Jesus’s death brings about a rebirth where the indwelling Christ, the second Adam, is the true spiritual person, whom God is creating in His image and likeness. (1 Cor.15:45; 2 Cor.4:10).

Call to mind what Paul was inspired to write, “For those He foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son” (Rom.8:29). By conforming and identifying humanity with the image of His Son, God harmonizes mankind with the “I AM” in Jesus. Jesus is the image of God in humanity. (Gen.1:26-27; Rom.8:29)

Having been born as Immanuel (God with us, Matt.1:23), Jesus lived the perfect human life, sacrificing Himself for our atonement, then being resurrected and ascended to heaven, Paul explains the truth of what Jesus did for humanity, “And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with Him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus” (Eph.2:6, BSB). Yes, “God raised humanity up with Christ and seated us with Him in heaven.” What does this mean? It means you and I find ourselves in heaven with Jesus (“I AM”) while simultaneously being human right here on earth. This is the essence of the ‘celestial life.’ I am constantly alive and living in heaven in our walk upon this earth.

Therefore, “I AM” is God’s name and life in humanity. So, we can say, “I AM who I AM in Christ, and Christ is the “I AM” in me.” Or, “Who I AM in Christ, is who He is in me.” Personally, it becomes a personal anthem and mantra to live by. So, when a person asks, ‘who am I?’…and answers by saying, “I Am (so-and-so),” it identifies the gift which Jesus (the “I AM”) has conferred upon the person by which he/she lives life as divine destiny would have. Thereby, all of humanity become interconnected, united and one through Jesus, the great “I AM.” Because of our oneness of our humanity in Jesus, each one of us can say to each other, “I am you!” where we are each identified by gift while unified as one.

There are three steps we undergo I call ‘ascents’ in the process of living the I AM ‘celestial life’:

The ‘Celestial Life” Is Lived In the Life of The Trinity (Rublev’s Icon of The Trinity, Wiki Commons)

Ascent 1 (Spirit): We must change our identity from the rebellious self who lives in the sin-condition of the enemy, Satan, and receive the new self in the “I AM” in Jesus by the Spirit. It is a process of death and rebirth. Jesus gave this analogy to depict this eternal truth of rebirth and renewal from corruption we must undergo, not only once, but as a way of life, “Unless a kernel of wheat is planted in the soil and dies, it remains alone. But its death will produce many new kernels—a plentiful harvest of new lives” (John 12:24; also, 2 Cor.4:10). Of course, Jesus was the first to initiate this cycle of life by surrendering Himself to the sacrificial death that will bring many to salvation.

Paul said, “Just as one trespass (through Adam) resulted in condemnation for all people, so also one righteous act (Jesus, the Second Adam) resulted in justification and life for all people.” Yes, “Much more did God’s grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many!” (Rom.5:18, 15, italics mine). The first ascent depicts the role of the Spirit in human life who leads all humanity to Jesus as the Messiah, who in turn mediates for humanity and keeps us unified to the Father. (John 16:12-15)

This image has an empty alt attribute
Dove, Symbol of Friendship of the The Holy Spirit and God’s Gift of Love To Humanity (John 14:26, MSG; Rom.5:5)

Ascent 2 (Jesus): When Paul said, “I have been crucified with Jesus” (Gal.2;20), this speaks of the process of spiritual death and rebirth through the act of repentance and forgiveness, with the gift of new life in the Spirit. Peter explains it this way, “Each of you must repent of your sins and turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Act.2:38).

Then Paul explains how life springs from death where God raises humans up to new life, “Since we have died to sin, how can we continue to live in it? Or have you forgotten that when we were joined with Christ Jesus in baptism, we joined Him in His death? For we died and were buried with Christ by baptism. And just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glorious power of the Father, now we also may live new lives” (Rom.6:2-5). God instituted the ritual of baptism to depict our death and burial in the watery grave, and just as God resurrected Jesus from the dead, we rise out of the watery grave of baptism as newly reborn humans through the Spirit’s power in Christ, the great “I AM.”

With the new life in the “I AM” in Christ, Jesus brings a fresh identity in each of us through the gifts He confers upon us individually and collectively. Paul said this of Jesus, “The Scriptures say, ‘When He ascended to the heights, He led a crowd of captives and gave gifts to His people’” (Eph.4:8). Yes, Jesus confers gifts upon saved humanity. So, every person can say, “I am who I am in Christ through the gifts He conferred by which we are identified in Him (I AM).” Each of our gifts enable us to take Jesus (the Gospel/Good News from God the Father) to others as the wondrous message of salvation from God in order that all humanity can be reconciled and saved.

This second ascent depicts the role of Jesus as Savior and represents the very essence of the Gospel message, for He is the Gospel (Good News). We become the extension of the very Gospel, Jesus Christ, the I AM Himself. Hence, we read, “So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making His appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, “Come back to God!” (2 Cor.5:20, NLB) Yes, Jesus’ work as humanity’s Messiah continues through the walk of saved humans He has called and assigned gifts. Jesus mediation as humanity’s Messiah is what gives passage for the Spirit to enter human life and accentuate Christ’s gifts in humanity, bringing glory to God. (John 16:7, 14-15)

The Second Ascent Reveals Jesus, The Savior and Mediator of Mankind Before God (Wiki Commons)

Ascent 3 (Father): The third ascent represents the Father’s role and act in humanity. The Father stands for the Triune Godhead and brings about the wellbeing of His Kingdom modelled after His Son, who in turn confers and assigns gifts upon humanity empowered by His Spirit (Love). The Apostle Peter tells us this, “And you are living stones that God is building into His spiritual temple. What’s more, you are His holy priests. Through the mediation of Jesus Christ, you offer spiritual sacrifices that please God” (1 Pet.2:5, NLB). The Father is building a temple through Christ the Son to dwell as a home for God and all humanity.

In saying, “living stones,” the passage is making reference to each human being with specific gifts as guides and mentors, who collectively becomes God’s temple and home. Peter goes further to say, “Once you had no identity as a people; now you are God’s people” (1 Pet.2:10). Yes, all God’s children are identified by the divine gifts Christ has conferred upon each person, and by which they live and bring healing and reconciliation to and in humanity.

God The Father, Creator and Primordial Essence and Mind of The Divine Destiny of Humanity

So, there we have it. What we saw in the three ascents are the work of the Father, Son, and Spirit, (Triune God) in humanity bringing about the ‘celestial life’ we live simultaneously in heaven in Christ and here upon earth. As we walk this earth, much like the marine life of the Seven Seas, we are swimming in the spiritual ocean of God’s Love-force guiding each of us to our respective destinies in His divine dwelling and temple.  

school of fish in water
The Marine Life in the Ocean is Metaphor for Living the ‘Celestial Life’ In the Ocean of God’s Love–Force in The Spirit (see: http://bulamanriver.net/23075)

Therefore, the I AM is the identity of Jesus’ Name and Personhood in humanity and vice versa. Humans become the spiritual person, the I AM in Christ. We become the offspring of God, the I AM in Jesus within the Godhead. By identifying our person with the I AM we are linking each of our personhood with the trinitarian God through and in Jesus to the Father and the Spirit. Thus, the ‘celestial life’ is the preeminence of our human/divine personhood in the I AM existence in Christ within the presence of the Triune Life* of God. (Matt.28:19)

Petition: Friends, as I have closed my post in the past, I customarily give our readers the opportunity to give their lives to our Maker. I thank you for investing your precious time with me in the sharing of the good news of Jesus who has enabled us to live the Triune Life* through the 3 Ascents. Jesus is alive today as our High Priest in heaven seated at His Father’s side, and ceaselessly mediating for us. I hope that in your heart of heart you will receive Him as your personal Savior, receive God’s Spirit, and be part of living this glorious humanity made children of God forever. You can privately and quietly pray the prayer below in your heart. I am asking you to pray this prayer as a human being Christ died for, regardless of your background. All are inducted into the one mankind Jesus saved, not into any religious sect or denomination – into the glorious humanity that Christ is preparing as the holy temple for God’s dwelling:

Prayer: “Almighty God, Father of all humanity, forgive me of all my sins for I receive Your Son, Jesus, as my personal Savior. In Your incalculable grace, thank you for recuing me and my loved ones, and all humanity, from the enemy’s fearful and destructive waters, and bringing us home into the life-giving waters of your Ocean of Love. Grant Your promised celestial life in Your Son through Your Holy Spirit, and open my eyes to the wondrous gifts you have conferred upon us all so we may serve one another in your Love. May Your Love guide and protect me and my Loved ones always, and bring us all into Your beloved and divine Kingdom. I praise and thank You, Amen.”

Prayer is A Profound One-On-One Spiritual Love Dialogue Between a Person and God the Father in Heaven (Wiki Commons)

Welcome to the celestial life of Love in God’s holy, eternal Family. (1 Tim.6:19) Then keep in touch with God’s Word for you by reading and studying your Bible, and visiting this blog and website and look at various subjects that may be relevant for your situation – go to: http://bulamanriver.net. You can email me with your questions at the address shown below.

Blessing: Until we meet again in my next post, may the blessings of the God who ceaselessly expresses Himself in His dependable Triune Love, be with you and your loved ones always. May the Spirit enliven your spirit and make all things concerning you possible as you live the “Triune Life”* in the  Bulamanriver** personhood.  In closing, Be strong in the Lord’s Joy.

Farewell for now!

Kiang,  (Your Servant and Friend in Christ)                                                         

*Triune Life: “Triune Life” speaks of the process of theosis or deification of humanity. What is theosis or deification? “It refers to apotheosis, meaning “making divine.” Theosis or deification is a transformative process whose aim is likeness to or union with God (as taught by the Eastern Orthodox Church and Eastern Catholic Church).” (Wikipedia.org) The belief in the process of ‘deification’ is understood in accordance with Jesus’ teaching, when He said, “Is it not written in your Law, ‘I have said you are “gods” ’? If He called them ‘gods,’ to whom the Word of God came—and Scripture cannot be set aside (cannot be broken)” (John 10:34-35; Psa.82:6). (You can read about the Triune Life at: http://bulamanriver.net/9199, and other posts)

The Resurrection to Immortality and Deification of Humanity Created In God’s Image (Wiki Commons)

I have written about this subject of ‘deification’ in my blogs under the theme ‘substitution’ and ‘attribution’ (see, http://bulamanriver.net/564), where I showed how Jesus came as God incarnate (Immanuel) to assume our sinful humanity in order to save mankind from sin and death for the express purpose of human deification. (Matt.1:23; Rom.3:10-12, 18, 23; John 3:16; 1 Cor.15:50-55; Rom.8:29) Further, we read the following, “As a process of transformation, theosis is brought about by the effects of catharsis (purification of mind and body) and theoria (‘illumination’ with the ‘vision’ of God). According to Eastern Christian teaching, theosis is very much the purpose of human life. It is considered achievable only through a synergy (or cooperation) between human activity and God’s uncreated energies.” (Wikipedia.org)

So, the “Triune Life” reveals the intersection of human life and activity and the uncreated divine energy flowing from the Tri-Personal Being of God of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. It is a way of life which explains that process of theosis whereby humans are transformed in body, mind, and spirit by the Love of God. God’s uncreated energy is His Love. So, the foundational tenet of the “Triune Life” is based upon the Love of God, for “God is Love” (1 John 4:8, 16). Thereby, it can also be called aptly, the “Triune Love.”

Rublev’s Icon of the Trinity (Wiki Commons)

I had coined the term “Triune Love” and “Triune Life,” to refer to a person who lives the three-dimensional life within the Tri-Personal Godhead of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. (Matt.28:19) This is opposed to the one-dimensional human way of life influenced by the devil. We see God’s Tri-Personal Love move in an inward, outward, and upward trajectory, in this process of theosis which I have called the ‘three ascents.’ The three ascents are three steps which dovetails into one another showing how all three Persons of the Godhead are in the relationship of Love with humanity – where God reveals the fullness of Himself to humanity, both individually and collectively. (2 Cor.13:14; 1 Pet.1:1-2) That’s to say, the act of one is the act of all three, and the act of three is the act of one, making them unified in Love. (Mar.12:29; Deut.6:4)

Every aspect of human living follows this three-step format revealing the three-dimensional aspect of how the Tri-Personal Being of God in the Father, Son, and Spirit, directly and collectively involved in the life of human believers, individually and collectively to bring humanity to salvation. These three steps move in an ascending order, so I will call them ‘ascents.’ Each ‘ascent’ dovetails into the next and finally reveals the ‘manifestation’ of the topic, which we will call the fourth step, in this case, Love!

Hence, all my articles are framed within this three-step format, or ascents. The subject of the article dovetails into each ascent and spontaneously lead to the manifestation of the divine Love and reveals how humanity is enlightened by God, and cleansed in mind, body, and spirit. The ascents reveal three doors one must enter to attain the manifestation of God’s Love relationship with humanity. The ascents are not to be misconstrued as some ‘secret knowledge’ or mystical activity. Rather, each ascent represents the relationship of Love a human enjoys with the Triune God in the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, throughout a person’s life. In fact, the ascents are actually three Love relationships the believer encounters with the Tri-Personal God. This three-way relationship is what I have called by the term, “Triune Life” or “Triune Love.” These ascents represent the movement of God’s Love in an inward, outward, and upward, trajectory to bring God’s enlightenment in a person. The fourth step reveals how the article is made to manifest in the life of the person, both individually and then collectively in humanity.

Man’s union with the Triune God, or “Triune Living/Loving,” is made possible by Jesus, who Himself, is one in substance and reality with the Triune Godhead. (John 1:1-2) He took our humanity into the very Being of the Triune Godhead by cleansing it of all sin and rebellion. To live the “Triune Love (Life)” is the miraculous expression of the Spirit (Love) in humans. (Rom.5:5) The miraculous life is the promise of the New Covenant, “I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you shall keep My ordinances, and do them” (Ezek.36:27).

The Bible states, “He (God) does great things that we cannot understand and miracles that we cannot count” (Job 5:9; 37:5). If God acts in ways that cannot be fathomed and is beyond human comprehension, then the miraculous life where humans are privileged recipients, cannot be deciphered by the human mind to its grandest manifestation. But we understand its meaning through divine revelation in that God reveals Himself as Love, and His miraculous activities are enveloped in His Love. (Jer.29:11)

The three-dimensional Triune Life/Love is opposed to living the one-dimensional solitary life of the fallen humanity inherited from Satan through Adam’s rebellion. For additional information about the Triune Life: http://bulamanriver.net/?p=8036. Also at: http://bulamanriver.net/9092.                                                

**Bulamanriver: To read the different facets of the life of the Bulamanriver, you may obtain a copy of my book, “Bula” Man-River, from Amazon.com; xulonpress.com, barnesandnoble.com, and other online book stores. All proceeds will go towards furthering the work of Gospel of Jesus Christ around the world.

"Bula" Man-River
Bulamanrive: Book Cover by Author

Mission Statement: Read the Triune Love Mission, Vision, and Value statements at: http://bulamanriver.net/8664

All scriptures are taken from the NIV Version 2011, unless stated otherwise.

Note: All information is copy-write material. Any information obtained from this website that is used for publication should be acknowledged by citing the website address, date of acquisition and information pertinent to original authorship. For general guidelines regarding web citations see The Guide for Citing Electronic Information. Thank you

LIVING IN THE ‘OCEAN’ OF THE DIVINE “LOVE-FORCE” BY KIANG P LEE

Greetings Friends! Jesus used many parables to try to make His listeners understand the Kingdom of God. (Matt.13:10-11) He gave the parable of the talents to show how God has conferred gifts in humanity so they may discover the treasure of their calling and purpose and use them to partner with God for His Kingdom. (Matt.25:14-30) Then He gave a parable of the good Samaritan to depict how being hospitable to our neighbors should always be an organic strength and common human denominator. (Luk.10:25-37) There was the parable of the sower, and the mustard seed, the wise manager, the great banquet, and so on.

The Parable of the Talent (Gold)

Today, I would like to share a parable with you which I believe the Spirit help to inspire. Like Jesus’ parable, I’ll begin with His words, ‘the kingdom of God is like’…the oceans of the Seven Seas teeming with marine life swimming in the ocean of God’s Love – see picture below.   

fishes in aquarium
The Parable of The Ocean of God’s Empowering Divine Love-Force

Let me elaborate. The water in the ocean is the enabling ‘condition’ which empowers marine life to go about living with other marine species, each fulfilling their individual role in the overall marine ecosystem. So likewise, the waters of the ocean is like God’s Love which enables humans to be sustained in His spiritual ecosystem and live out their divinely conferred gifts and purposes for the eternal destiny of God’s Kingdom. I likened the ‘ocean’ to the life-force of God’s Love as ‘conditions’ because inherent in its oceanic makeup is the power which enables humans to live under God’s purpose for all its inhabitants. The ocean of God’s Love-force immerses humans in the way of life that’s monopolized by God’s Love, and the fruits of His Love. (1 Cor.13) 

God’s Love, The Enabling Force In God’s Ocean of Grace

There is another ocean of fear and trepidation, that exists opposed to God’s Love. This is the ocean where the enemy of God, Satan, is master. Its waters are murky and therefore hard to navigate. It has many predatory marine species which lay in wait to devour helpless marine life – see picture below.

Great white shark - Wikipedia
The Ocean of Fear and Sin of the Enemy of God, Satan, Who Seeks to Destroy Humanity with Predatory Species (Unsplash)
brown octopus

The people who now live in the ocean of God’s Love were once inhabitants of this fearful and dreadful ocean. In fact, because of Adam’s fall when he and his wife succumbed to the Satan’s temptation in Eden, all humanity were fated to become unfortunate and inescapable inhabitants of this dreadful and destructive ocean. (Gen.3:1-6, 21-24) Just as our fist parents were banished from Eden, so humanity has grown in the fearful and destructive ocean. (Gen.3:21-24) We were born and raised in it. But for those who respond to God’s call, they have been given to be extracted out of and saved from this ocean’s deathly and deadly waters and now placed in and inhabit and swim in the ocean of God’s Love-force.

The two oceans are different inherently in the makeup of their waters which provides the energy which generate their respective motivational ‘conditions,’ or, they encourage appropriate ‘conditional responses.’ The ocean of fear and trepidation produces the ‘sin-condition,’ while the ocean of Love generates the ‘Love-condition.’ For it is the ‘condition’ that triggers the behavior and life of its inhabitants. Paul referred to the two spiritual oceans in this way, If you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live” (Rom.8:13).

Sin-Generating Fear, The Force in the Ocean of the Enemy Who Seeks to destroy humanity

How do people enter into and live in the peaceful, productive, and fulfilling life in the ocean of God’s Love? And how do humans find the way to extract themselves out of the ocean of fear and sin? It is obvious the marine life like fish, turtles, and other species cannot extract themselves out from one ocean into the next. So, it has to take the owner of the respective oceans to let their inhabitants or citizenry in and out at their voluntary free will. God is the owner of the ocean of Love. The devil is the owner of the ocean of fear and sin.

God is the Creator who rules supreme over all, including Satan. (Isa.45:5; Deut.32:39) The devil exists under His divine sovereign rule. Therefore, only God can rescue the people imperiled in the hazardous ocean of fear and sin. And God can execute a rescue plan for humanity, so to speak. And this He has already done by appointing and sending His Son, Jesus Christ, as master and owner of the ocean of Love. (John 3:16; Heb.1:2; 2:8) This is the ‘miraculous life’ that is our human heritage and preordained to live because mankind was created in God’s Love image – you can read more about the ‘miraculous life’ at http://bulamanriver.net/22961, where I share my own personal miraculous story as testimony.

Yes, the enemy must first be defeated, so he is made powerless to hold people captive in his ocean of sin-generating fear and rebellion. Through Jesus’ victory, people are released from their captivity so they may enter the ocean of Love in the Spirit. Jesus has done exactly that by defeating Satan in the temptation, lived a perfect sinless life, was crucified upon His cross for human sins, resurrected and ascended to heaven and made humanity’s High Priest, forever mediating for mankind. (Matt.4:1-11; 27:32-56; 1 Pet.1:3; Act.1:6-11; Heb.4:14-16) The Bible attests through Paul, “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not be encumbered once more by a yoke of slavery” (Gal.6:1). Yes, Jesus has set humanity free from the sin-conditioned waters of fear and rebellion of the enemy.

Paul further states “For He has rescued us from the kingdom of darkness (sin-generating Ocean) and transferred us into the Kingdom of His dear Son (Love-generating Ocean)” (Col.1:13, italics mine). John said, “There is no fear in Love. But perfect Love drives out fear” (1 John 4:18). Here, we see the Bible disclose to us the identity of the two metaphysical oceanic conditions: Love and sin (fear).       

Paul explains and makes plain for us what God did through His Son, and provides the answer between the distinction of the two supernatural oceanic conditions as the “law of sin and death,” and the “law of the Spirit (Love)”: “For in Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life has set you free from the law of sin and death” (Rom.8:2). Note, the “law of the Spirit of life” frees us from the “law of sin.”  The “law of sin” is the ocean that empowers the sin-condition from which the destructive way of life of the enemy emanates. And the “law of the Spirit” is the power that inspires the Love-condition” and Love-force in the ocean of God’s Love, and generates righteous and uplifting living.

Jesus Gave Himself as the Sacrificial Lamb to Save Humanity From The deathly Waters of the Ocean of fear and Sin, and Bring Humanity Home in The Ocean of God’s Love.

Jesus gives us the mechanics of how a person is taken out of the murky deadly waters of the devil, and installed in the Love waters of the Holy Spirit. He said, “You must be born again of water and the Spirit” (John 3:5-8). Let me paraphrase the passage as it relates to our topic today, “You must be born again into the waters of the Spirit’s Love.” This is a spiritual birth, as Jesus made plain to Nicodemus. (John 3:3-7) You see, the waters which flow in the ocean of Love is empowered by the Holy Spirit Himself. He is the very personification of the Love-force in God’s ocean.

Jesus made this clear when the Bible states, “On the last day, the climax of the festival, Jesus stood and shouted to the crowds, ‘Anyone who is thirsty may come to me! Anyone who believes in me may come and drink! For the Scriptures declare, ‘Rivers of living water will flow from his heart.’” (When He said “living water,” He was speaking of the Spirit, who would be given to everyone believing in Him. But the Spirit had not yet been given, because Jesus had not yet entered into His glory.)” (John 7:37-39).

So, we see that the waters of the ocean of Love is the Spirit of God, the third Person of the Triune Godhead, empowering and enabling humans to swim in God’s ocean of Love. Paul said this to the Romans, “God’s Love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us” (Rom.5:5). Yes, the Holy Spirit is likened to the cleansing waters which flows in humanity. (John 4:14; 1 Cor.12:13; Rev.21:6; 22:1-2, 17)

So, all the various life forms that exist in the ocean of the sin-condition, has to depend upon God who overpowers its evil owner, pluck humanity out, and resettle them in the life-giving ocean of Love. This is mankind’s true home, it is the home of their birthright. (Gen.1:226-27Eph.4:20-24Gen.5:1) It is the ocean where the words of the Psalms is brought to life where human live the celestial life in the Spirit, “One thing I ask from the LORD, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the LORD and to seek Him in His temple. For in the day of trouble He will keep me safe in His dwelling” (Psa.27:4-5). Yes, in God’s ocean humans are in God’s Love-temple, and vice versa. Let us be clear, the ‘house of the Lord,’ ‘His temple,’ is very much the life and heart of humanity, for Paul affirms this, saying, “Don’t you realize that all of you together are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God lives in you?” (1 Cor.3:16). Yes, the Psalmist is referring to the true temple of God – the very heart and innermost being of believers who now swim and exist in the ocean of God’s Love.

Paul asserted that the Father chose us in Christ before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in His sight in Love. We are the focus of the Father’s Love, and it is in the environment of the Spirit’s transcendent oceanic Love-force where we are renewed, transformed, and abundantly blessed. (Eph.1:3-4)    

We recall and remind ourselves of God’s trinitarian divine nature of Love in the Father, Son, and Spirit, into which humanity has been inducted. (Matt.28:18-20; 2 Cor.13-14) In their Loving union, they act as one for they are indivisibly One Triune God – so, the act of one is always the act of all three, and the act of three is always the act of one. Since God is a Tri-Personal divine Being, thereby Jesus is very much part and personification of the spiritual oceanic Love-condition in which humans exist and swim.

Jesus said, the Spirit’s role in our lives is to manifest Christ in each of us. Jesus said, “He (Holy Spirit) will glorify Me because it is from Me that He will receive what He will make known to you. All that belongs to the Father is Mine. That is why I said the Spirit will receive from Me what He will make known to you” (John 16:14-15). Paul makes this plain, “For the Lord is the Spirit, and wherever the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom” (2 Cor.3:17). In the supernatural ocean of God’s Love-force, humanity is always existing in the inner sanctum of God’s Love-Being, for John affirms, “All who live in Love live in God, and God lives in them” (1 John 4:16).

Paul goes further, “For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God” (Col.3:3). By saying, “For you died in this life,” Paul means the old life we lived in the enemy’s deathly ocean is gone forever, for Christ has paid the ransom to free humanity from the devil’s deathly waters and bring us to God’s living waters. (1 Tim.2:6; John 4:14; Rev.21:6) Yes, the ocean of God’s Love-force in the Spirit immerses and embrace us so that Jesus through the Spirit is by our side, He is over us and in us, so our every action and impulse are wrapped in the mysteries of God’s Love by which the Triune God reveals Himself to and in humanity. Yes, the scriptures reveal God’s triune nature in the Father, Son, and Spirit, acting as One in their Love for humanity. (Matt.28:18-20; 1 Pet.1:2; 2 Thess.2:13; 2 Cor.13:14)

Rublev’s Icon of the Trinitarian God (Wiki Commons)

The ceremony of baptism was inaugurated in the Christian faith to show in a visible form how humans are inducted into the new life in the ocean of God’s Love – notice, “For we were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one body–whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free–and we were all given the one Spirit to drink” (1 Cor.12:13; Matt.28:18-20). Yes, we are drinking from the same Spirit of God’s Love who unites us to Christ and the Father. Peter affirms this process where God, through His Son, brings humanity out of the prison of fear and sin, and inducts them into the ocean of God’s Love, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Act.2:37-38).

Depiction of Jesus’ Baptism by John in the Jordan River

In short, living in the ocean of God’s Love (Spirit) in Christ is what the whole purpose of life means. Paul goes further, saying, “You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness” (Eph.4:22-24). Let us not forget, that in addition to saving humanity from the raging waters of death of the devil, Jesus also handed people gifts so they may live their lives with genuine divine purpose. Note, “That is why the Scriptures say, “When He (Jesus) ascended to the heights, He led a crowd of captives and gave gifts to His people” (Eph.4:8, also, Eph.4:10-13, NLB). Yes, Jesus opened the eyes of the people He saved with the gifts God conferred in His living ocean of Love.

It is within the sovereignty of His empowering Love veiled within His spiritual oceanic environment that all the good, both spiritual and physical, that God has promised in His Word is made possible and brought to reality for all humanity. The inherent and substantive value of human life is all about living a free-flowing metamorphized life through the oceanic currents of the Spirit’s Love-force, so through our gifts He may carry each of us to our respective divine destinies. (You can read of the Promises God gave mankind out of His great Love at: http://bulamanriver.net/15209).

On the other hand, the enemy’s ocean of fear and sin exists for the purpose of establishing false and damaging motivations and activities which opposes God and neutralize His awesome Promises. The entrapped people in this destructive ocean live a life of deception where they are given the false and the dubious aspirations by following self-made promises influenced by the devil. It is a life where people aspire and pursue their own brand of success and are blinded from seeing and realizing their divinely-ordained gift and dream-life intended for them.

Baptism – The Sign of Rebirth Into God’s Ocean Of Grace and Love

First and foremost, among God’s numerous awesome Promises is the promise of eternal life, while the devil’s lot has been determined as the very harbinger of destruction and death. (John 3:16; Rom.3:23, 6:23; Rev.20:10). Then, this is what He Promised concerning our human sojourn upon this earth, “For I know the plans I have for you,” says the LORD. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope” (Jer.29:11, NLB). The context of this verse means that God’s plans are always good for us, provided we do not seek our own plans that’s really influenced by the enemy. The Psalmist tell us, “Those who trust in the LORD will lack no good thing” (Psa.34:20). Also, we are admonished to, “Wait patiently for the Lord. Be brave and courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the Lord” (Psa.27:14, NLB). Those who willingly follow the devil in his sin-conditioned oceanic environment, will finally meet God’s judgement, as the Bible states, “Then the devil, who had deceived them, was thrown into the fiery lake of burning sulfur, joining the beast and the false prophet. There they will be tormented day and night forever and ever” (Rev.20:10, 15).

Dove, Symbol of The Holy Spirit and The Source of the Life-Giving Divine Love-Force, Rom.5:5. (Wiki Commons)
school of fish in water
The Peaceful and Hopeful Environment of God’s Love-Force (Unsplash)

To read more about God’s Promise or Covenant of Love for humanity, and how a person is taken from the spiritually deathly oceanic environment to the Loving environment of God’s Love, go to: http://bulamanriver.net/17484.

Petition: Friends, as I have closed my post in the past, I customarily give our readers the opportunity to give their lives to our Maker. I thank you for investing your precious time with me in the sharing of the good news of Jesus who has enabled us to live the Triune Life* through the 3 Ascents. Jesus is alive today as our High Priest in heaven seated at His Father’s side, and ceaselessly mediating for us. I hope that in your heart of heart you will receive Him as your personal Savior, receive God’s Spirit, and be part of living this glorious humanity made children of God forever. You can privately and quietly pray the prayer below in your heart. I am asking you to pray this prayer as a human being Christ died for, regardless of your background. All are inducted into the one mankind Jesus saved, not into any religious sect or denomination – into the glorious humanity that Christ is preparing as the holy temple for God’s dwelling:

Prayer: “Almighty God, Father of all humanity, forgive me of all my sins for I receive Your Son, Jesus, as my personal Savior. In Your incalculable grace, thank you for recuing me and my loved ones, and all humanity, from the enemy’s fearful and destructive waters, and bringing us home into the life-giving waters of your Ocean of Love. Grant Your promised celestial life in Your Son through Your Holy Spirit, and open my eyes to the wondrous gifts you have conferred upon us all so we may serve one another in your Love. May Your Love guide and protect me and my Loved ones always, and bring us all into Your beloved and divine Kingdom. I praise and thank You, Amen.”

Prayer is A Solemn One-On-One Spiritual Love Dialogue Between a Person and God the Father (Wiki Commons)

Welcome to the celestial life of Love in God’s holy, eternal Family. (1 Tim.6:19) Then keep in touch with God’s Word for you by reading and studying your Bible, and visiting this blog and website and look at various subjects that may be relevant for your situation – go to: http://bulamanriver.net. You can email me with your questions at the address shown below.

Blessing: Until we meet again in my next post, may the blessings of the God who ceaselessly expresses Himself in His dependable Triune Love, be with you always. May the Spirit enliven your spirit and make all things concerning you possible as you live the “Triune Life” as a  Bulamanriver.*  Be strong in the Lord’s joy.

Farewell for now!

Kiang,  (Your Servant in Christ)                                                                                                                         

*Triune Life: “Triune Life” speaks of the process of theosis or deification of humanity. What is theosis or deification? “It refers to apotheosis, meaning “making divine.” Theosis or deification is a transformative process whose aim is likeness to or union with God (as taught by the Eastern Orthodox Church and Eastern Catholic Church).” (Wikipedia.org) The belief in the process of ‘deification’ is understood in accordance with Jesus’ teaching, when He said, “Is it not written in your Law, ‘I have said you are “gods” ’? If He called them ‘gods,’ to whom the Word of God came—and Scripture cannot be set aside (cannot be broken)” (John 10:34-35; Psa.82:6). (You can read about the Triune Life at: http://bulamanriver.net/9199, and other posts)

The Resurrection to Immortality and Deification of Humanity Created In God’s Image (Wiki Commons)

I have written about this subject of ‘deification’ in my blogs under the theme ‘substitution’ and ‘attribution’ (see, http://bulamanriver.net/564), where I showed how Jesus came as God incarnate (Immanuel) to assume our sinful humanity in order to save mankind from sin and death for the express purpose of human deification. (Matt.1:23; Rom.3:10-12, 18, 23; John 3:16; 1 Cor.15:50-55; Rom.8:29) Further, we read the following, “As a process of transformation, theosis is brought about by the effects of catharsis (purification of mind and body) and theoria (‘illumination’ with the ‘vision’ of God). According to Eastern Christian teaching, theosis is very much the purpose of human life. It is considered achievable only through a synergy (or cooperation) between human activity and God’s uncreated energies.” (Wikipedia.org)

So, the “Triune Life” reveals the intersection of human life and activity and the uncreated divine energy flowing from the Tri-Personal Being of God of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. It is a way of life which explains that process of theosis whereby humans are transformed in body, mind, and spirit by the Love of God. God’s uncreated energy is His Love. So, the foundational tenet of the “Triune Life” is based upon the Love of God, for “God is Love” (1 John 4:8, 16). Thereby, it can also be called aptly, the “Triune Love.”

Rublev’s Icon of the Trinity (Wiki Commons)

I had coined the term “Triune Love” and “Triune Life,” to refer to a person who lives the three-dimensional life within the Tri-Personal Godhead of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. (Matt.28:19) This is opposed to the one-dimensional human way of life influenced by the devil. We see God’s Tri-Personal Love move in an inward, outward, and upward trajectory, in this process of theosis which I have called the ‘three ascents.’ The three ascents are three steps which dovetails into one another showing how all three Persons of the Godhead are in the relationship of Love with humanity – where God reveals the fullness of Himself to humanity, both individually and collectively. (2 Cor.13:14; 1 Pet.1:1-2) That’s to say, the act of one is the act of all three, and the act of three is the act of one, making them unified in Love. (Mar.12:29; Deut.6:4)

Every aspect of human living follows this three-step format revealing the three-dimensional aspect of how the Tri-Personal Being of God in the Father, Son, and Spirit, directly and collectively involved in the life of human believers, individually and collectively to bring humanity to salvation. These three steps move in an ascending order, so I will call them ‘ascents.’ Each ‘ascent’ dovetails into the next and finally reveals the ‘manifestation’ of the topic, which we will call the fourth step, in this case, Love!

Hence, all my articles are framed within this three-step format, or ascents. The subject of the article dovetails into each ascent and spontaneously lead to the manifestation of the divine Love and reveals how humanity is enlightened by God, and cleansed in mind, body, and spirit. The ascents reveal three doors one must enter to attain the manifestation of God’s Love relationship with humanity. The ascents are not to be misconstrued as some ‘secret knowledge’ or mystical activity. Rather, each ascent represents the relationship of Love a human enjoys with the Triune God in the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, throughout a person’s life. In fact, the ascents are actually three Love relationships the believer encounters with the Tri-Personal God. This three-way relationship is what I have called by the term, “Triune Life” or “Triune Love.” These ascents represent the movement of God’s Love in an inward, outward, and upward, trajectory to bring God’s enlightenment in a person. The fourth step reveals how the article is made to manifest in the life of the person, both individually and then collectively in humanity.

Man’s union with the Triune God, or “Triune Living/Loving,” is made possible by Jesus, who Himself, is one in substance and reality with the Triune Godhead. (John 1:1-2) He took our humanity into the very Being of the Triune Godhead by cleansing it of all sin and rebellion. To live the “Triune Love (Life)” is the miraculous expression of the Spirit (Love) in humans. (Rom.5:5) The miraculous life is the promise of the New Covenant, “I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you shall keep My ordinances, and do them” (Ezek.36:27).

The Bible states, “He (God) does great things that we cannot understand and miracles that we cannot count” (Job 5:9; 37:5). If God acts in ways that cannot be fathomed and is beyond human comprehension, then the miraculous life where humans are privileged recipients, cannot be deciphered by the human mind to its grandest manifestation. But we understand its meaning through divine revelation in that God reveals Himself as Love, and His miraculous activities are enveloped in His Love. (Jer.29:11)

The three-dimensional Triune Life/Love is opposed to living the one-dimensional solitary life of the fallen humanity inherited from Satan through Adam’s rebellion. For additional information about the Triune Life: http://bulamanriver.net/?p=8036. Also at: http://bulamanriver.net/9092.                                                   

**Bulamanriver: To read the different facets of the life of the Bulamanriver, you may obtain a copy of my book, “Bula” Man-River, from Amazon.com; xulonpress.com, barnesandnoble.com, and other online book stores. All proceeds will go towards furthering the work of Gospel of Jesus Christ around the world.

"Bula" Man-River
Book Cover By Author

Mission Statement: Read the Triune Love Mission, Vision, and Value statements at: http://bulamanriver.net/8664

All scriptures are taken from the NIV Version 2011, unless stated otherwise.

Note: All information is copy-write material. Any information obtained from this website that is used for publication should be acknowledged by citing the website address, date of acquisition and information pertinent to original authorship. For general guidelines regarding web citations see The Guide for Citing Electronic Information. Thank you

“THE MIRACULOUS LIFE – NO ORDINARY LIFE!” BY KIANG P LEE

Greetings Friends everywhere! I would like to share a true-life miracle with my readers in this post. My wife, two family friends, and yours truly, were privileged recipients of God’s saving grace. I remember the miracle like it happened yesterday although it has been years now. I share this miraculous event to impress upon us that when we enter into a relationship with God, we will walk a life of miraculous activity which He intended for humans to live from the moment of man’s creation. Adam and Eve lived with God in Eden experiencing this miraculous life. The Garden of Eden was our first parent’s celestial home on earth which God their Father created miraculously and presented for His gift to them. They existed in God’s likeness and lived a form of human immortality never to be experienced by mankind since. (Gen.2:26-27) God promises to restore human immortality through the second Adam, Jesus Christ. (1 Cor.15:45; Isa.7:14; John 6:47)

When Adam and Eve alienated themselves from God’s presence the miraculous life stopped, and the countdown to mankind’s physical life began ticking from the moment God said this after their fall, “For dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return” (Gen.3:19; Rom.6:23). After Adam and Eve disobeyed God, humanity must now await the arrival of the second Adam to restore humanity’s birthright, which God proclaimed to our first parents and Satan, the arch deceiver. (Gen.3:15; Isa.7:14; Matt.1:23) The second Adam who would restore humanity’s rightful place in God’s presence was none other than Jesus Christ, the one and only Son of God. (1 Cor.15:45-48; John 3:16) Human immortality will be restored at the second coming of Christ, the second Adam. Man has always lived under God’s sovereignty no matter what, but scarcely in relationship of oneness in the bond of Love which produces the miraculous life which the second Adam makes possible. That comes as a matter of choice on humanity’s part as he responds to God’s Love. Recall, as long as Adam and Eve lived in the celestial Garden encased in God’s Loving presence, they enjoyed an uninterrupted miraculous human life and experience.

Jesus, the Second Adam, Came and Defeated Satan in the Temptations Restoring the Adamic Birthright.

This momentous event to restore human immortality became possible when the Son of God came as the Immanuel, God in the human flesh in the person of Jesus, fully God and fully man, to restore man back to the miraculous life which has always been our human birthright. (Isa.7:14; Matt.1:23; 2 Tim.1:7; Eph.3:20-21; Gen 2:26-27) Hence, we see Jesus went about doing good through God’s miraculous power which we read in the four Gospels. (Acts 10:38) By taking our humanity upon Himself, Jesus, through His defeat of Satan’s temptations in the Judean wilderness, His perfect sinless life, His sacrificial death for our atonement, His human incarnational resurrection and ascension, fused our humanity forever to the very Triune Being of God. Man can now enter a life of miracles as his birthright. Miracles come wrapped in God’s Love expression for man. God is divine and we are mere mortals, and when the two intersect in the bond of Love, miracles happen.

Jesus, Using The Divine Miraculous Power to Heal The Blind (Wiki Commoms)

Keep the “end” in mind as it relates to our beginnings in Eden (Rev.21:3; 1 Cor.15:51-52; Gen.1:26-27) That is a vital nugget of wisdom to keep us on an even spiritual keel in this journey we call life. Beasts and other forms of life don’t set goals much less inherit a divine destiny. They behave spontaneously through their God-given instincts in the moment and for the greater benefit of humans to reflect upon the responsibility of dominion conferred by divine edict upon humanity. But humans live in the present relative to the past and with an objective “end” (future) he has set out in his mind to achieve. There are many “ends” humans can craft for himself, but life’s true “end” is to live for our heavenly Father’s purpose of living in His presence. The Creator set for man his “end” from the beginning: “Then God said, ‘Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule.’” (Gen.1:26-27; Rom.8:29) Everything we do in life must have this overriding purpose behind it. His image is He is divine and immortal and He is Love by nature. (1John 4:8: John 4:24; Neh.9:6)

There’s only one way to achieve God’s objective “end” purpose for man – it has to take a hands-on miracle from God Himself. It’s that plain, it’s that simple. Immortality and Love is God’s image in His Tri-Personal Being, and for man to attain that objective requires God’s direct input. It is impossible for humans to attain the purpose of God for him/her so miracles has to be part of the human life. That brings about a constant miraculous activity in man’s journey on this earth.

So the miraculous life we experience as humans is a foretaste of the immortal life we will share with the Father, the Son, and the Spirit, for eternity. It is a trailer, a preview, of God’s movie for humanity happening in real life, if you like. It is your birthright and mine to live the miraculous life as a human, and eternally in immortality in Christ. Paul said, “For the Kingdom of God is not in word but in power.” (1 Cor. 4:20) The miraculous life humanity is ordained to live stems from God’s power. If we can get our limited human mind off our equally limited material world, and take the opportunity to look deeper at the greater creation and universe, we would undoubtedly conclude that miracles are happening all around us, and especially within our humanity. It is for man to make a choice, as God gave Adam, whether a person will enter into this relational oneness in Love with Him by faith in His Son through the Spirit’s move and power. (Zech.4:6; 2 Cor.13:14)

As we stand at the threshold of life conferred by divine edict and look ahead to this astounding promise God our Father has given humanity through His Son, let us take heed of God’s counsel, “Today I have given you the choice between life and death, between blessings and curses. Now I call on heaven and earth to witness the choice you make. Oh, that you would choose life, so that you and your descendants might live!” (Deut.30:19). Yes, as it did with our first parents, it has always been about making a choice – God pleads with us to choose the path of life – the path of living the miraculous life in Christ Jesus His Son by the Spirit’s power. (Zech.4:6; Gal.2:20)

The Human Resurrection to Immortality-The Divine Gift From God to Humanity John 3:16 (Wiki Commons)

God affirms the miraculous life He has given humanity through the promises He has given us in His Word, the Bible. To read more, go to: http://bulamanriver.net/11339

Here’s what I wrote regarding my miraculous experience in my book, “Bulamanriver – The Miracle of Triune Living”:

“The year was 1996 – the night of November 9th to be exact. I was living and working in the islands of Fiji in the South Pacific. The day, like any other, was fraught with its usual hectic demands of work. Yes, even in this beautiful idyllic paradise on earth, the strife of life is no respecter of your world. Little did I know the extraordinary event that lay in wait and about to unfold before me—that day will forever change the course of my life.

“Scheduled to take an early-morning flight to Canberra, Australia, my wife and I had to drive to the other side of the main island of Viti Levu where the international airport is located. A couple, friends of the family, traveled with us on this two-and-a-half-hour drive. The night was black as could be, with only the car’s headlights slicing through the pitch darkness. This stretch of the road ran straight and level for about a quarter mile with a bridge at the end and then turned sharply left around a mountain on the far side of the bridge.

“At around 2:30 a.m., the one thing most dreaded by drivers happened: I fell asleep at the wheel. I drove off my side of the two-lane road, drifted into the opposite lane, and finally went off the road onto the stopping lane. By now the car was not aligned with the bridge ahead to take us safely across the river. Instead, we were heading for a nosedive into the waters of the river below the bridge.

Intense Blinding Light Awoke Me From My Deep Slumber (Pic: Wiki Commons)

“My short but deep sleep was the kind you just don’t get out of unless you are vigorously shaken. Then something amazing occurred. In my mind’s eye I saw the most blinding white light I have ever seen. The light was so intensely bright it woke me from my sleep. As I opened my eyes, astonishingly, there before me I saw the source of this intense white light – literally in front of me. I now looked directly at a person clothed in dazzling white garment to his feet, standing in front of me. With his right arm outstretched he held up his lamp, the source of the brilliant light that woke me. He would not move out of my way. He never flinched but stood his ground.

“All this happened so fast my immediate reaction was to swerve to evade a head-on crash into the person. As I veered left, I found myself on the road landing on the road again and crossing the bridge. The spot where the person in dazzling white garment stood led directly into the river below. If he had not stood his ground, forcing me to turn sharply to avoid a collision, we would have headed straight into the river and most likely died of drowning—leaving seven parentless children behind.

“What happened next was equally astonishing. The bridge, made of concrete and pipe railings, lit up the dark night. Yes, the whole bridge was ablaze in brilliant white light. So as I swerved to avoid the crash into the person with the lamp, I was unwittingly maneuvered onto the bridge. The bridge’s railings turned into lights, something like fluorescent tube lights with a more intense brightness about them. By the side rails of the bridge I saw more people, all dressed in dazzling white shorts and short-sleeved shirts, walking along happily chatting and delighting in each other’s presence. All I could remember from their demeanor in those fleeting moments was the aura of complete joy and peace that radiated from their presence. It was a short but unforgettable few seconds in my life.

“My mind reeling, I wondered what had just happened. As we crossed the bridge and made the ninety-degree turn, we had a good view of the bridge we crossed. All we saw was nothing but pitch darkness, the brilliant light-show evident no more. I drove slowly for a few moments trying to collect my thoughts. “Did you see what just happened?” I asked my wife. She nodded, equally dumbfounded, and said she did. I asked my friends, and they said they too saw what happened. We all sat silent for a moment as the truth sank in: we had just tasted a miracle of angelic intervention.

Angels to the Rescue

“God sent angels to rescue us from certain death. (Psa.91:11) At the hotel, my wife and I knelt to thank God for His love and mercy for keeping us all safe. Seven children would have lost their parents that pitch-dark morning, but for the grace of God. It would be an understatement to say the event affirmed and solidified our weak human faith in God’s existence, His sovereignty over our lives, and unquestionably, His extraordinary Love.

A Bridge in Nadi, Fiji, Similar to One Crossed by Author, With Its Steel Pipe Rails Which Lit Up Like Fluorescent Light in The Pitch Black Night (Wiki Commons)

“I know the Lord saved us for more reasons than His awesome Love for us. You see, a friend from the nearby village had told me stories of lives lost to the awkward bend in the road—but why spare us? I had read about one such tragic incident at this very bridge in the local newspaper not so long ago. As this event kept replaying in my mind, and I recognized God’s unerring hand in my life from before and after the event, I kept asking “why” because I felt no more deserving than the next person.

“When I think of the people who have lost their lives in that river it’s hard not to see yourself as special to Him. God brought me to see that what He did for us that pitch-dark night, He would do for anyone – yes, you and me and everyone. Yes, I was special and so were my wife and friends and all of humanity. Everyone is precious in His sight. I was not any more special or exclusive to Him than the next person. His love is for all, and no one person can claim exclusivity to it. And as for the people who perished in that river? As we shall see, God’s Love never left them.

God is Love

“God Loves all humanity, make no mistake about that. However, the secret to the miracle-life is to have Him Love us intimately – like the “apple of His eye” (Psalm 17:7-9). Doesn’t this make God partial? Isn’t this the selectiveness we just discounted? God gives us the freedom to make choices. Freedom, as we will see later, undergirds the Love God extends to man. There is no Love without freedom and no freedom without Love. Love and freedom are relational and reciprocal by nature, for “God is Love.” (1 John 4:8) Therefore, because of God’s Love, we have a choice to make. We experience God’s Love intimately when we reciprocate His Love through the exercise of our free will—when we Love Him in return. (Read my blog on Loving God absolutely at: http://bulamanriver.net/21412)

Brown Sand Love Text on Seashore
“God Is Love” 1 John 4: 8, (pexels)

“That is the difference. God’s Love is impartial; He has unreservedly set aside His Love for every man, woman, and child for all time, and nothing can make Him change His mind. He sacrificed His only Son to prove His Love for all mankind. However, this intimate relationship can be made to happen in human reality. God waits upon man to choose to freely Love Him as He has chosen to freely Love humanity.

The Person with the Lamp

“As for the Person holding the lamp, I believe He is more than an angel. His attire and the lamp are symbolic of His station. The Person who held that lamp emitting the blinding white light on that black November night was none other than Jesus Christ Himself. The brilliant light emitted from the lamp is analogous of Him as the Personified Word (Psa. 119:105). He is the Light of the world, who guides humanity out of darkness. (John 8:12) He is also the Author of the literal Word of God, the Bible, who wakes us to see our human weaknesses which does not conform to God’s image. The bridge represents the crossover we make when we express faith in Him as our Savior.” (Excerpt from: “Bula-Man-River – The Miracle of Triune Living”)

Simon Dewey: Lead, Kindly Light | Christ, Pictures of christ, Jesus pictures
“I am the light of the world. Whoever follows Me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life” (John 8:12).

I hope you found that true story fascinating, but at the same time authentic and relatable because humans are offspring of the divine. My hope is that my story be a teaching moment about the greatness of God our Father in heaven who intimately cares for His human children. Yes, miracles become a way of life when you receive Jesus and the Holy Spirit live in you as His temple, where God says, “I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people” (2 Cor.6;16).

Jesus Died To Make The Miraculous Life Possible for Humanity

If you wish to read more, please obtain a copy of my book, “Bula Man-River – The Miracle of Triune Living,” from Amazon.com, Banrnesandnoble.com; Xulonpress.com. Also, see appendix below with Book Cover.

Petition: Friends, as I have closed my post in the past, I customarily give our readers the opportunity to give their lives to our Maker. I thank you for investing your precious time with me in the sharing of the good news of Jesus who has enabled us to live the Triune Life* through the 3 Ascents. Jesus is alive today as our High Priest in heaven seated at His Father’s side, and ceaselessly mediating for us. I hope that in your heart of heart you will receive Him as your personal Savior, receive God’s Spirit, and be part of living this glorious humanity made children of God forever. You can privately and quietly pray the prayer below in your heart. I am asking you to pray this prayer as a human being Christ died for, regardless of your background. All are inducted into the one mankind Jesus saved, not into any religious sect or denomination – into the glorious humanity that Christ is preparing as the holy temple for God’s dwelling:

Prayer: “Almighty God, Father of all humanity, forgive me of all my sins for I receive Your Son, Jesus, as my personal Savior. In Your incalculable grace, grant Your promised celestial life in Your Son through Your Holy Spirit, and open my eyes to the wondrous gifts you have conferred upon me and all humanity. May Your Love guide and protect me and my Loved ones always, and bring us all into Your beloved and divine Kingdom. I praise and thank You, Amen.”

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 1024px-Rubens_Praying_Hands.jpg
Prayer is A Solemn One-On-One Spiritual Love Dialogue Between a Person and God the Father (Wiki Commons)

Welcome to the celestial life of Love in God’s holy, eternal Family. (1 Tim.6:19) Then keep in touch with God’s Word for you by reading and studying your Bible, and visiting this blog and website and look at various subjects that may be relevant for your situation – go to: http://bulamanriver.net. You can email me with your questions at the address shown below.

Blessing:Until we meet again in my next post, may the blessings of the God who ceaselessly expresses Himself in His dependable Triune Love, be with you always. May the Spirit enliven your spirit and make all things concerning you possible as you live the “Triune Life” as a  Bulamanriver.*  Be strong in the Lord’s joy.

Farewell for now!

Kiang,                                                                                                                             

(Your Servant in Christ)

*Triune Life: “Triune Life” speaks of the process of theosis or deification of humanity. What is theosis or deification? “It refers to apotheosis, meaning “making divine.” Theosis or deification is a transformative process whose aim is likeness to or union with God (as taught by the Eastern Orthodox Church and Eastern Catholic Church).” (Wikipedia.org) The belief in the process of ‘deification’ is understood in accordance with Jesus’ teaching, when He said, “Is it not written in your Law, ‘I have said you are “gods” ’? If He called them ‘gods,’ to whom the Word of God came—and Scripture cannot be set aside (cannot be broken)” (John 10:34-35Psa.82:6). (You can read about the Triune Life at: http://bulamanriver.net/9199, and other posts)

I have written about this subject of ‘deification’ in my blogs under the theme ‘substitution’ and ‘attribution’ (see, http://bulamanriver.net/564), where I showed how Jesus came as God incarnate (Immanuel) to assume our sinful humanity in order to save mankind from sin and death for the express purpose of human deification. (Matt.1:23Rom.3:10-121823John 3:161 Cor.15:50-55Rom.8:29) Further, we read the following, “As a process of transformation, theosis is brought about by the effects of catharsis (purification of mind and body) and theoria (‘illumination’ with the ‘vision’ of God). According to Eastern Christian teaching, theosis is very much the purpose of human life. It is considered achievable only through a synergy (or cooperation) between human activity and God’s uncreated energies.” (Wikipedia.org)

So, the “Triune Life” reveals the intersection of human life and activity and the uncreated divine energy flowing from the Tri-Personal Being of God of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. It is a way of life which explains that process of theosis whereby humans are transformed in body, mind, and spirit by the Love of God. God’s uncreated energy is His Love. So, the foundational tenet of the “Triune Life” is based upon the Love of God, for “God is Love” (1 John 4:816). Thereby, it can also be called aptly, the “Triune Love.”

Rublev’s Icon of The Trinity (Wiki Commons)

I had coined the term “Triune Love” and “Triune Life,” to refer to a person who lives the three-dimensional life within the Tri-Personal Godhead of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. (Matt.28:19) This is opposed to the one-dimensional human way of life influenced by the devil. We see God’s Tri-Personal Love move in an inward, outward, and upward trajectory, in this process of theosis which I have called the ‘three ascents.’ The three ascents are three steps which dovetails into one another showing how all three Persons of the Godhead are in the relationship of Love with humanity – where God reveals the fullness of Himself to humanity, both individually and collectively. (2 Cor.13:141 Pet.1:1-2) That’s to say, the act of one is the act of all three, and the act of three is the act of one, making them unified in Love. (Mar.12:29Deut.6:4)

Every aspect of human living follows this three-step format revealing the three-dimensional aspect of how the Tri-Personal Being of God in the Father, Son, and Spirit, directly and collectively involved in the life of human believers, individually and collectively to bring humanity to salvation. These three steps move in an ascending order, so I will call them ‘ascents.’ Each ‘ascent’ dovetails into the next and finally reveals the ‘manifestation’ of the topic, which we will call the fourth step, in this case, Love!

Hence, all my articles are framed within this three-step format, or ascents. The subject of the article dovetails into each ascent and spontaneously lead to the manifestation of the divine Love and reveals how humanity is enlightened by God, and cleansed in mind, body, and spirit. The ascents reveal three doors one must enter to attain the manifestation of God’s Love relationship with humanity. The ascents are not to be misconstrued as some ‘secret knowledge’ or mystical activity. Rather, each ascent represents the relationship of Love a human enjoys with the Triune God in the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, throughout a person’s life. In fact, the ascents are actually three Love relationships the believer encounters with the Tri-Personal God. This three-way relationship is what I have called by the term, “Triune Life” or “Triune Love.” These ascents represent the movement of God’s Love in an inward, outward, and upward, trajectory to bring God’s enlightenment in a person. The fourth step reveals how the article is made to manifest in the life of the person, both individually and then collectively in humanity.

Man’s union with the Triune God, or “Triune Living/Loving,” is made possible by Jesus, who Himself, is one in substance and reality with the Triune Godhead. (John 1:1-2) He took our humanity into the very Being of the Triune Godhead by cleansing it of all sin and rebellion. To live the “Triune Love (Life)” is the miraculous expression of the Spirit (Love) in humans. (Rom.5:5) The miraculous life is the promise of the New Covenant, “I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you shall keep My ordinances, and do them” (Ezek.36:27).

The Bible states, “He (God) does great things that we cannot understand and miracles that we cannot count” (Job 5:9; 37:5). If God acts in ways that cannot be fathomed and is beyond human comprehension, then the miraculous life where humans are privileged recipients, cannot be deciphered by the human mind to its grandest manifestation. But we understand its meaning through divine revelation in that God reveals Himself as Love, and His miraculous activities are enveloped in His Love. (Jer.29:11)

The three-dimensional Triune Life/Love is opposed to living the one-dimensional solitary life of the fallen humanity inherited from Satan through Adam’s rebellion. For additional information about the Triune Life: http://bulamanriver.net/?p=8036. Also at: http://bulamanriver.net/9092.                                                          

**Bulamanriver: To read the different facets of the life of the Bulamanriver, you may obtain a copy of my book, “Bula” Man-River, from Amazon.com; xulonpress.com, barnesandnoble.com, and other online book stores. All proceeds will go towards furthering the work of Gospel of Jesus Christ around the world.

Bulamanriver Book Cover

Mission Statement: Read the Triune Love Mission, Vision, and Value statements at: http://bulamanriver.net/8664

All scriptures are taken from the NIV Version 2011, unless stated otherwise.

Note: All information is copy-write material. Any information obtained from this website that is used for publication should be acknowledged by citing the website address, date of acquisition and information pertinent to original authorship. For general guidelines regarding web citations see The Guide for Citing Electronic Information. Thank you

HUMAN RELATIONSHIPS AS EXPERIENCED THROUGH THE TRI-PERSONAL LIFE OF GOD, BY KIANG P. LEE

Greetings Friends! Relationships are the most important of all human interactions. It forms the basis of human existence and the foundation upon which all decent societies, and ultimately nations, are built. They fundamentally affect how we are judged as a nation, and how we conduct ourselves in international relations. (Pro.14:34) The origin of relationships is founded upon the nature of the Creator God who created all things to reflect Him in His Trinitarian nature. God, who exists as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, lived in Loving relationship with each other from eternity. That Tri-Personal Love relationship is the basis of human relationships.

File:Holy Trinity Icon.jpg
Human Relationships based upon the Triune Life of God (Rublev’s Icon of Trinity, Wiki Commons)

Notice the plural/collective pronoun/adjective. God did not refer to Himself solitarily, but plurally as the Trinitarian God. He said this when humanity was created, “Let US make human beings in OUR image, make them reflect OUR nature, so they can be responsible for (have dominion) … creation” (Gen.1:26-27, MSG, emphasis added). The original word for “God” was taken from the word, “Elohim,” which is single deity in the plural, or ‘uniplural.’ He did not say ‘let me,’ or ‘after my likeness.’ By declaring His plurality saying, ‘US,’ and ‘OUR,’ He signifies His Trinitarian nature, which is expounded in the scripture as the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, God. (Matt. 28:19; John 15:26; 2 Cor.13:14)

God is Triune and therefore relational. He is not a “solitary” and reclusive Being. God is not a solo, self-contained Being who is trying to subjugate His people as a stern judge and ruler, as many picture Him. God’s underlying nature is Triune, from which their Love unites them in ONE existence – ONE, unified, and inseparable Being. God can only be Love and thereby relational because He is Triune. For Love unites, but isolation breeds fear and division. All of creation was the design of the God who is Trinitarian and reflects His Triune expression.

So, creation reflects His relational and interconnected existence. For there is no dislocation between God’s act of creation and who He is in His Triune Being of Love. Everything from the universe and upon this earth is interconnected reflecting God’s Trinitarian nature. And the energy and essence which unites God is His Love. God Loves precisely because God is Love in His Triunity. (1 John 4:8, 16) Thereby, all creation is the reflection of His Love. There is no other possible way God could have made all things, whether visible or invisible, except to reflect His Loving Tri-Personal Being. Likewise, everything man does, he carries out to reflect his own humanity. For instance, man will not act to reflect the beast of the forest, for he has no inherent identity with beasts. It almost goes without saying that our human accomplishment can never be done on our own without the interdependent contribution from other humans. This reflects God’s interconnected Tri-Personal Being. Science itself, when it digs deeper into the created order cannot deny this wonderful truth that everything is connected as God made creation to reflect Himself in His Triunity. I would like to ask you to see this video from a ‘TedX talk’ given by scientist Tom Chi, which you can view at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rPh3c8Sa37M I hope you have found the presentation to be both informative and instructive.

Love – The Foundation of Relationships

Man’s relationships will always be based upon God’s interconnected nature of Love, for the Bible corroborates that “God is Love” in His Triune Being. (1 John 4:8, 16) That means it is His narrative of Love … not man’s definition of love. Whether man wish to acknowledge it or not, man’s existence is hardwired with and in God’s interconnected Triune Love. When we deviate from that which we are natured and created to become, we find ourselves in problematic relationships. It seems everywhere we look there’s increasing fragmentation of relations. We question the sincerity of our love for people and wonder if it is worth our effort trying to love others, even on a human level. We have been blind-sided into these relationship knots from which we can’t free ourselves. That is what human love with its limited scope does to us.

However, many times we miss what Jesus tells us clearly: “A brand-new command I give you: Love one another.” If the decree to Love is a brand-new command, then what’s new about it? What’s different about it? Does it make any difference? He answers, “As I have Loved you, Love one another.” How did He Love us? He answers, “As the Father has Loved me, so have I Loved you. Now remain in My Love” (John 15:9). Jesus was speaking from His Trinitarian relationship in the Father and the Spirit. He was making known a new command of the Triune Love of God, which the disciples never saw nor experienced until they met and saw it in the life of Jesus for three and half years.

“God Is Love” (1 John 4:8) (Wiki Commons)

Leading Through Loving/Serving

So, though Jesus was the “leader” to His followers, He did not lead by domination. He displayed leadership by the Love in which He has always existed within the Triune Life of God. He reprimanded His disciples when they haggled about who was dominant among them. Jesus said, “whoever wants to be first among you must be a slave to everyone” (Mark 10:35-45, esp. V.44) He was first and foremost the Chief Servant. He proved this, when, after performing a servant’s work of washing the disciples’ feet before His death, He asked them, “Do you understand what I have done to you?” He answered, “You address me as ‘Teacher’ and ‘Master,’ and rightly so. That is what I am. So, if I the Master and Teacher, washed your feet, you must now wash each other’s feet. I’ve laid down a pattern for you, “What I’ve done, you do. I’m only pointing out the obvious. A servant is not ranked above his master; an employee doesn’t give orders to the employer. If you understand what I’m telling you, act like it—and live a blessed life” (John 13: 12-17, MSG). He led them by inviting them to live in the Triune Love and Life of God as He did.

The Triune Love was Never Before Seen in Man’s History, Until Jesus Came

The Triune Love between the Father, Son, and Spirit was something that was never seen articulated in humanity until the Son came and took upon Him His creaturely human body. By taking our fallen humanity in Himself, He crucified the sin-conditioned human from Adam upon His cross, and rescued us from sin, rebellion, and condemnation. Then through His resurrection and ascension, God the Father now introduces Jesus’ new glorified humanity that humans can receive by faith in Jesus in the Spirit’s power. Hence, our “union” with the Triune God makes His new Love command a reality in human life through His Spirit. Peter said this, “Christ suffered for our sins once for all time. He never sinned, but He died for sinners to bring you safely home to God. He suffered physical death, but He was raised to life in the Spirit. (1 Pet.3:18; Rom.5:5; Rom.8:11)

Never before in human history was this Triune Love seen or tasted in human experience until Jesus came. Only Adam and Eve enjoyed it for a time until they alienated themselves from God, and followed man’s “solitary” way of fear. This Love was seen in Jesus’ life, where He went about doing nothing but good and healing all who came to Him (Acts 10:38). Jesus came as the Second Adam to rescue humanity from the sin condition which the first Adam consigned humanity at the hands of the devil. By taking our old sinful humanity in Himself and crucified it on His cross upon Calvary. Through Jesus’ resurrection He gave birth and brought into reality the new humanity in Christ mankind now adopt from God. (1 Cor.15:45; Rom.8:10; Col.1:27)

When Jesus took our humanity into Himself, and through His perfect life, sacrificial death, resurrection, and ascension to His Father, this very Love from the Triune Being of God became ours by inheritance. Peter said, “He (Christ) has given us His very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature.” (2 Pet.1:4; 1 John 3:16) All it requires is faith, and the Holy Spirit makes Love flow in our lives as spiritual “living waters.” (John 7:37-39; Rom.5:5)

In my Book, “Bulamanriver* – The Miracle of Triune Living,” I explained 3 mandates God gave man from the outset of His creation, by which to develop his relationship with God, other humans, and with creation as a whole. The three mandates reflect the way they existed from eternity in their Triune nature. He desires of humanity to adopt and live like they do in their Triunity. Here are excerpts from my Book on the 3 mandates:

1. The Genesis ‘Helper Mandate’

“The first act of man in his relationship with another human is to use his God-given purpose to promote “creative living” with his fellowman. The purpose of our divinely conferred gift is to be creative as God is Creator. If gifts originate from the divine source, then man’s relationship with one another is mediated by the One who is inherently part of the gift – the Gift-Giver, Jesus – through the “living waters” of the Bulamanriver* (you). (Eph.4:8;1 Cor.12:4) The creative aspect of this relationship was given at the beginning when Adam was created and the original “other” human was taken from him. There God uttered the first of three Genesis Mandates for man through Adam and Eve: to be a fitting “helper” for each other. Though the primary context for this instruction is marriage, the meaning is twofold. Since Eve was the only “other” human besides Adam, by extension she also represented our “neighbor,” whoever he or she may be. For the “helper” can be applied in every context, not necessarily matrimonial. I call this the “helper mandate.” We saw Jesus re-echoed this first principles from Genesis to His disciples in the final hours before His crucifixion.

We All Utilize Our Varied Gifts to Help One Another In An Act of Love for Humanity

“Paul encouraged the Corinthians, saying we are “helpers of your joy” (2 Cor. 1:24, KJV). Further, he told the Romans, “Owe no man anything, except the debt of Love” (Rom. 13:8; Gal. 6:2, KJV). Jesus reiterated man’s “helper mandate” when He said we are to “Love our neighbors as we Love ourselves” (Mark 12:31, emphasis added). The famed 23rd Psalm depicts God as the “helper” of mankind. So we see in all this that the “creative living” outline cannot be denied: to be a “helper.” The primary purpose of our calling therefore is ultimately to “help” one another and bring all mankind to unity with the Triune God in Jesus.” (Pg.177)

2. The Genesis ‘Dominion Mandate’

In my book, I continue to say this about the second mandate, “We cease to be “helpers” when we violate man’s “dominion mandate.” What is the “dominion mandate”? It is the second Genesis Mandate that has two parts given to mankind by the Creator: how a human is to interact and conduct himself/herself with creation, and with his/her fellow humans. The first part is the “helper mandate” in man’s relation with his fellowman, while the “dominion mandate” explains a person’s relation in his/her dominion over God’s creation, which doesn’t include dominion over another person (Gen. 1:26-31; 2:19-20).

Remember that, dominion was given over creation but not another human. The Bible is quite clear on this in Genesis. We are to “help” not “dominate” our fellow humans. Only God is man’s ruler because humanity was made in His likeness, and He is humanity’s Creator and Savior. We are to be man’s “helper,” not “ruler.” A person’s relationship with another is either creative or uncreative, productive or unproductive, but is hardly ever neutral. We make the mistake of trying to merge the two when it can’t be done, and we can be one or the other depending on which river we ride – the river of fear or the river of Love. There is no Savior of mankind except Jesus (John 3:16; Act.4:12). Every single human is given equal and shared dominion over the earth under the Creator (Ps. 24:1; Eccl. 5:9; Mic.4:4, NKJV). The passage from Genesis makes clear the dual mandate of man’s dominion over the entire creation, and the mandate of being “helpers” of his fellowman.” (Pg.178)

Jesus Shown The Devil’s World Dominion That is Driven by Rebellion, Greed, and Sin (Matt.4)

Mankind has unwittingly, or wittingly, rendered God’s “dominion mandate” ineffective by violating His first mandate of being “helpers” of other’s joy. We have turned the “dominion mandate” on its head by seeking to control (dominate) others. So we see people resist and fight dictators and tyrants that’s littered in the annals of revolutions and uprisings, across the face of human history. They have no freedom to express themselves through their gifts in the shared dominion of this earth where people of all races and cultures are equal inheritors, by Divine protocol (Micah 4:4; Gen.1:26-27)

Instead, in the flow of the Triune Life/Love we have in Christ, we’re to live in the Life-energy of God’s Love-expression, to help people in the shared dominion of this earth. We must not see this earth as the object of our fears, which results in greed and covetousness. This is what we have witnessed in human history upon this earth as people express themselves in their “solitary” way of life, apart from God, and His mandates. The next mandate completes God’s three-fold decrees.

3. The Genesis ‘Triune Mandate’

I continue in my book, “Man will dominate the blessing of the richness of this earth in peace, fairness, integrity, and true abundance when he exercises his dominion as the Creator decreed. God’s decree, vis-à-vis living like his Maker, ushers in the third Genesis mandate in the words, “Let us make human beings in the image and likeness. Male and female He created them” (Gen. 1:26, 27). I like to call this the “likeness mandate.” Man’s only purpose of existence is to live in the Creator’s likeness. As the likeness of God is Trinitarian, I also call it the “Triune likeness mandate.” By adding his “helper” and “dominion” mandates, man’s purpose can be said to be a “helper” of his fellowman in his “dominion” over this earth, by living in the “Triune likeness” of his Maker. Triune living is about a life of interdependence with one another in Christ and the Spirit, helping one another in man’s dominion of this earth.”

Love Wall Art - Digital Art - Love in Red Square by Michael Tompsett
The Triune Mandate Founded Upon God’s Divine Nature of Love

“The exercise of authority over another human, whether by coercion, physical force, or even psychological means, is precluded in the Genesis “dominion mandate.” God holds dominion over every man, woman, and child, and He has not abdicated His sovereignty when He fashioned humanity in His own image. Man may live under the sway of his archenemy and his deceptions, but God is the final arbiter over human fate. You see, our Creator placed in humans the aggressive spirit to reinforce and support His earthly “dominion mandate.” That is how mankind has progressed and advanced, which continues to our present day. However, the mandate limits man’s domineering spirit over the earth and all in it, which precludes another human.” (End of quotation. Pg.179)

I go on to say in my Book that trust or faith is the bedrock upon which all healthy relationships are built and made to last.

Trust

“Trust (faith) is the basis of all human and Godly relationships that began in Eden. The foundation of trust is grounded upon the three-fold Genesis Mandates the Creator gave mankind. Those relationships were hijacked by the devil, who introduced his own “domineering” spirit dictated by distrust, fear, self-interest, and greed (Gen. 3). Man bought it lock, stock, and barrel, and the rest is a history of heartaches, sufferings, violence, and death. As a result of fear and the absence of God’s Spirit in man, the devil has wreaked havoc in men’s relationships with one another. God has never abdicated His sovereignty over humanity, and from the beginning promised a Savior (Gen. 3:15).

Not only must we discontinue our control of our fellowman; we are also not to place our trust in them, but in God alone. The mandate is clear: it is to “help” not “trust.” The reason for this is obvious. There is only One who can save in whom man can wholly trust without fear of being betrayed or deceived – Jesus. Where people overextend their dominion to include men and place their wholehearted trust in them, sooner rather than later they awaken to find their trust is seriously misplaced.” (Pg.180)

“Trust” is All About Faith

From the Joyous to the Toxic

As I pen this blog post, I realize the innumerable human relationship issues that exist in all peoples from all walks of life. It is human to be in relationship dynamics where we are seeking resolutions for mutual co-existence. When we speak of humanity and relationships, they are one and the same thing. Our families are the product of relationships. Our work, though we may tacitly assume as matters of happenstance, are outcomes of relationships we have engendered, and continues to be such. So is school, and every other human affiliation we have encountered in life. Relationships come in all shapes, sizes, and hues. At times relationships may seem insurmountable, complicated, and inexplicable. At other times, they may not be so complicated where both parties see eye-to-eye on matters which can be of mutual interest and benefit. So, relationships can range from the joyous to the toxic. But God’s Love works like a balm to heal and bring joy where gloom once reigned.

Joy Wall Art - Mixed Media - Joy Blue- Art by Linda Woods by Linda Woods
Joy Is The Bedrock for Love

Man Is Relational…Because God Is!

All human relationship issues and dilemmas can be traced back to man’s ignorance and/or flagrant violation of the three mandates given by God at human creation. It seems, from most accounts, the issue that’s predominant in the world today is the blatant exploitation of the “dominion mandate” which renders the “helper mandate” superfluous and redundant. And we see this spirit of “control” extensive not only in the many facets of the life of individuals, but across the spectrum of human interactions, in communities, the corporate world, politics, of governance, to international relations between nations.

Be that as it may, we cannot see the human relationship dynamism simply through the corrupted one-dimensional “dominion mandate” view alone with self-serving propensity, for the three mandates work connectively as one because of their interdependence and inter-causative nature. Like God’s inter-relational Triune nature, it must be understood that the first two mandates cannot be articulated in its true authentic expression without the all-important third mandate, where a person is existing from within the Triune Life and Love of God. It is the foundation upon which the first and second mandates frame its existence, energy, and purpose. For in fact, the “Triune mandate” is uttered first, as the foundation decree, as shown in Genesis. (Gen.1:26-27; 2:18)

Here, as in all of His creation, we see how man’s relationship (existence) with his fellow humans relies upon this three-dimensional principle, rather than on fallen man’s “solitary” one-dimensional life. It is fashioned after a God who is Triune and lives by this same three-dimensional principle. Man’s relationship dynamics has its underpinning in the Creator who Himself is relational in His divine Tripartite Being and existence.

The Genesis Three-Pronged Principle Basis of Human Relationships

Once we have figured out with the Spirit’s help that God is Love in His Triune existence, and through His utterance at our human/divine image creation, He has included us in His Trinitarian Being through His Son, in the Spirit’s power. Only then, we will see the authentic underpinning of the human relationship with other humans through God’s divine Love nature. The Holy Spirit will be the power working mysteriously and miraculously in humanity, even though we may not be conscious of how He orchestrates life in all its complexity. (Rom.8:28) Or so it seems, but not for Him. We will see human life is to be fashioned and shaped after the Creator who is relational, and we observe what Jesus said, “I have laid down a pattern for you. What I have done, you do” – living the Trinitarian Life. That is the first and all-important base we cover in this matter of human relationships.

It begins with the family unit from which human life begins. Then it extends outside to others as our human connection determines how we cultivate relationships – in our homes, our work places, schools, churches, social interactions, villages and towns, in sporting activities, and numerous other affiliations. The three-pronged principle I have covered in this post is the way God has determined from the outset of man’s existence on this earth, as the essence of how human relationship is cultivated and made to thrive in its authentic expression, undergirded in His Triune nature of Love. (You may read my Book for a broader expose’ of this subject. See my appendix below titled “Bulamanriver” for ordering details)

You must recognize as a human holding the sacred image of God, you have your existence in the Triune Being of God in Christ and through the inspiration of the Spirit, is made to have relationship engagements based upon God’s Love. I end with encouragement to live as Jesus did in the Triune Love and relationship He has with God and His fellowmen. You can read about how humanity is given the new birth to enter into the new life in Christ at: http://bulamanriver.net/17978. Also at: http://bulamanriver.net/5525

Petition: Friends, as I have closed my post in the past, I customarily give our readers the opportunity to give their lives to our Maker. I thank you for investing your precious time with me in the sharing of the good news of Jesus who has enabled us to live the Triune Life* through the 3 Ascents. Jesus is alive today as our High Priest in heaven seated at His Father’s side, and ceaselessly mediating for us. I hope that in your heart of heart you will receive Him as your personal Savior, receive God’s Spirit, and be part of living this glorious humanity made children of God forever. You can privately and quietly pray the prayer below in your heart. I am asking you to pray this prayer as a human being Christ died for, regardless of your background. All are inducted into the one mankind Jesus saved, not into any religious sect or denomination – into the glorious humanity that Christ is preparing as the holy temple for God’s dwelling:

Prayer: “Almighty God, Father of all humanity, forgive me of all my sins for I receive Your Son, Jesus, as my personal Savior. In Your incalculable grace, grant Your promised celestial life in Your Son through Your Holy Spirit, and open my eyes to the wondrous gifts you have conferred upon me and all humanity. May Your Love guide and protect me and my Loved ones always, and bring us all into Your beloved and divine Kingdom. I praise and thank You, Amen.”

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 1024px-Rubens_Praying_Hands.jpg
Prayer is A Solemn One-On-One Spiritual Love Dialogue Between a Person and God the Father (Wiki Commons)

Welcome to the celestial life of Love in God’s holy, eternal Family. (1 Tim.6:19) Then keep in touch with God’s Word for you by reading and studying your Bible, and visiting this blog and website and look at various subjects that may be relevant for your situation – go to: http://bulamanriver.net. You can email me with your questions at the address shown below.

Blessing: Until we meet again in my next post, may the blessings of the God who ceaselessly expresses Himself in His dependable Triune Love,* be with you and your Loved ones always. May the Spirit enliven your spirit and make all things concerning you in God’s Promises possible as you live the Triune Life.* Be strong in the Lord’s joy, and Love Him completely.

Farewell for now,

Kiang P. Lee, (Your Servant In Christ)

*Triune Life: “Triune Life” speaks of the process of theosis or deification of humanity. What is theosis or deification? “It refers to apotheosis, meaning “making divine.” Theosis or deification is a transformative process whose aim is likeness to or union with God (as taught by the Eastern Orthodox Church and Eastern Catholic Church).” (Wikipedia.org) The belief in the process of ‘deification’ is understood in accordance with Jesus’ teaching, when He said, “Is it not written in your Law, ‘I have said you are “gods” ’? If He called them ‘gods,’ to whom the Word of God came—and Scripture cannot be set aside (cannot be broken)” (John 10:34-35Psa.82:6). (You can read about the Triune Life at: http://bulamanriver.net/9199, and other posts)

I have written about this subject of ‘deification’ in my blogs under the theme ‘substitution’ and ‘attribution’ (see, http://bulamanriver.net/564), where I showed how Jesus came as God incarnate (Immanuel) to assume our sinful humanity in order to save mankind from sin and death for the express purpose of human deification. (Matt.1:23Rom.3:10-121823John 3:161 Cor.15:50-55Rom.8:29) Further, we read the following, “As a process of transformation, theosis is brought about by the effects of catharsis (purification of mind and body) and theoria (‘illumination’ with the ‘vision’ of God). According to Eastern Christian teaching, theosis is very much the purpose of human life. It is considered achievable only through a synergy (or cooperation) between human activity and God’s uncreated energies.” (Wikipedia.org)

So, the “Triune Life” reveals the intersection of human life and activity and the uncreated divine energy flowing from the Tri-Personal Being of God of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. It is a way of life which explains that process of theosis whereby humans are transformed in body, mind, and spirit by the Love of God. God’s uncreated energy is His Love. So, the foundational tenet of the “Triune Life” is based upon the Love of God, for “God is Love” (1 John 4:816). Thereby, it can also be called aptly, the “Triune Love.”

Rublev’s Icon of The Trinity (Wiki Commons)

I had coined the term “Triune Love” and “Triune Life,” to refer to a person who lives the three-dimensional life within the Tri-Personal Godhead of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. (Matt.28:19) This is opposed to the one-dimensional human way of life influenced by the devil. We see God’s Tri-Personal Love move in an inward, outward, and upward trajectory, in this process of theosis which I have called the ‘three ascents.’ The three ascents are three steps which dovetails into one another showing how all three Persons of the Godhead are in the relationship of Love with humanity – where God reveals the fullness of Himself to humanity, both individually and collectively. (2 Cor.13:141 Pet.1:1-2) That’s to say, the act of one is the act of all three, and the act of three is the act of one, making them unified in Love. (Mar.12:29Deut.6:4)

Every aspect of human living follows this three-step format revealing the three-dimensional aspect of how the Tri-Personal Being of God in the Father, Son, and Spirit, directly and collectively involved in the life of human believers, individually and collectively to bring humanity to salvation. These three steps move in an ascending order, so I will call them ‘ascents.’ Each ‘ascent’ dovetails into the next and finally reveals the ‘manifestation’ of the topic, which we will call the fourth step, in this case, Love!

Hence, all my articles are framed within this three-step format, or ascents. The subject of the article dovetails into each ascent and spontaneously lead to the manifestation of the divine Love and reveals how humanity is enlightened by God, and cleansed in mind, body, and spirit. The ascents reveal three doors one must enter to attain the manifestation of God’s Love relationship with humanity. The ascents are not to be misconstrued as some ‘secret knowledge’ or mystical activity. Rather, each ascent represents the relationship of Love a human enjoys with the Triune God in the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, throughout a person’s life. In fact, the ascents are actually three Love relationships the believer encounters with the Tri-Personal God. This three-way relationship is what I have called by the term, “Triune Life” or “Triune Love.” These ascents represent the movement of God’s Love in an inward, outward, and upward, trajectory to bring God’s enlightenment in a person. The fourth step reveals how the article is made to manifest in the life of the person, both individually and then collectively in humanity.

Man’s union with the Triune God, or “Triune Living/Loving,” is made possible by Jesus, who Himself, is one in substance and reality with the Triune Godhead. (John 1:1-2) He took our humanity into the very Being of the Triune Godhead by cleansing it of all sin and rebellion. To live the “Triune Love (Life)” is the miraculous expression of the Spirit (Love) in humans. (Rom.5:5) The miraculous life is the promise of the New Covenant, “I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you shall keep My ordinances, and do them” (Ezek.36:27). The Bible states, “He (God) does great things that we cannot understand and miracles that we cannot count” (Job 5:9). The three-dimensional Triune Life/Love is opposed to living the one-dimensional solitary life of the fallen humanity inherited from Satan through Adam’s rebellion. For additional information about the Triune Life: http://bulamanriver.net/?p=8036. Also at: http://bulamanriver.net/9092.                                                          

**Bulamanriver: To read the different facets of the life of the Bulamanriver, you may obtain a copy of my book, “Bula” Man-River, from Amazon.com; xulonpress.com, barnesandnoble.com, and other online book stores. All proceeds will go towards furthering the work of Gospel of Jesus Christ around the world.

Bulamanriver Book Cover

Mission Statement: Read the Triune Love Mission, Vision, and Value statements at: http://bulamanriver.net/8664

All scriptures are taken from the NIV Version 2011, unless stated otherwise.

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